How Judaism evolved from polytheism

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Laceyq's picture
How Judaism evolved from polytheism

Hi

I have read some accounts on how Judaism was once a polytheisric religion that had a lot of local variants. I've also read about how Yahweh and el were evolved deities without a clear origin. How certain are we of this history? If we know historically that Judaism and then Christianity evolved like any other religion then what do Christian apologists say about it?

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Tin-Man's picture
@Lacey Re: "If we know

@Lacey Re: "If we know historically that Judaism and then Christianity evolved like any other religion then what do Christian apologists say about it?"

Oh, they have PLENTY to say about it. The problem, though, is pretty much everything they do say is not much more than a steaming smelly pile of double-speak, twisted assertions, and outright imaginary speculation. Basically, if any of their precious fairytale stories were actually true, then there would be no need for their apologetics in the first place. Ever since joining this site, I have been absolutely AMAZED at the mental gymnastics and contortionist thinking displayed by theists in an effort to defend and retain their "blessed" faith.

Of course, then there are those who simply plug their fingers into their ears and go, "LA-LA-LA-LA-LA-LA...", because they simply do not want to accept/believe anything that places their religious beliefs in doubt. Matter of fact, I actually know a few folks personally who probably could not function in daily life without their precious Jesus/God there to comfort them. Therefore, they cannot afford to have so much as a shadow of doubt cast upon their beliefs. Sad, but true.

In a nut shell, from my experience, the only folks who will ever listen to any rational reason or seek out the truth of the history of their respective religion are those who are already having honest doubts. And as for the numerous apologists that plague the population, it would be difficult to convince me that many/most of them actually believe the shit they spew from their mouths. Sure, no doubt there are a few who are truly and sincerely devout and believe they are "doing the Lord's work." However, for those such as WLC and his ilk, it is a job. A profession. They get PAID really good money to travel the world and twist, bend, warp language and scientific studies in an effort to convince people why they should remain in "The Church." And make no mistake, "The Church" is a multibillion dollar INDUSTRY that has been steadly losing ground (Translate that to "losing money.") over the past several decades. Hence the need for apologists to counter the vast wealth of knowledge that is now at the fingertips (literally) of a vast majority of the world population. In my opinion, scientific and historical facts and truths are annoying speedbumps to apologists. And it is their job to try to counter that information by any means necessary in an effort to keep their God securely wedged into those ever-decreasing gaps.

Laceyq's picture
It's so ...amazing...that

It's so ...amazing...that they can be so obtuse. With how much apologetics there is out there unjust guessed that things like this were not so clear? Like how can you argue with documentation and history?

I know that apologetics is smoke and mirrors; inuse tonspend a lot of time on Catholic Answers till they banned me, and then CARM. I just keep thinking that they can't be straight out lying or else more people would find out!

Tin-Man's picture
@Lacey Re: "...inuse

@Lacey Re: "...inuse tonspend a lot of time on Catholic Answers till they banned me, and then CARM. I just keep thinking that they can't be straight out lying or else more people would find out!"

Consider this... Why do you think you got banned? Why do you think that most religious sites prefer to avoid having atheist members? Again, this is just my opinion, but I see apologetics as the method used to maintain control over those individuals who WANT to believe, but are having trouble coming to terms with all the scientific/historical data available in today's modern world of information availability. Many/most of these people do not always have the education/intelligence to understand the sciences involved in causing their doubts. And that is where apologetics steps in to twist/contort the scientific facts into a biblical mold that helps ease the mind of those who never wanted to lose their religion in the first place. Then they can sleep peacefully at night knowing their beliefs are upheld by "modern science", and we atheists are just too blind to see the truth.

The best lies are always told with just enough truth to be convincing to those who do not know any better. And even if the church and/or apologists do blatantly misrepresent scientific/historical research findings, you have to understand that most faithful members WANT TO believe the church. In some cases (as I mentioned earlier) they HAVE TO believe, because they cannot imagine their lives without their faith. Basic psychology. Heck, I would even toss a bit of Stockholm Syndrome into the mix in many cases.

Laceyq's picture
I think it's crazy how much

I think it's crazy how much stuff is assumed to be fact from religion. I know grown adults who still think men have one less rib than women and that Jewish slaves built the pyramids. And hell, you still see people talking about arc sites and stuff like we have facts about it. I think apologetics puts a false glamour on religion and makes it seem intellectual. But it doesn't seem anything more special than people knowing all the ins and outs of their favorite fandom

Tin-Man's picture
@Lacey Re: "I think it's

@Lacey Re: "I think it's crazy how much stuff is assumed to be fact from religion."

Oh, I totally agree. It can be very disturbing sometimes speaking with certain theists and learning what they believe to be "true". And keep in mind, this is from fully grown and educated adults, with many of them having very skilled jobs/professions and holding positions of high authority/responsibility. So imagine, if you dare, how disturbingly MORE vulnerable are the masses of people around the world who do NOT have the benefits of higher education and modern comforts. Easy targets, in other words. Hell, apolegetics aren't even necessary in many cases with the more isolated groups.

Here's the deal. Growing up as a kid, I never even heard of the term "Apolegetics". Never. Why? Because it was not necessary back then. Because nobody questioned God or the Bible the way people do today. Even though I most certainly had my doubts at the time, it did not matter. My elders told me the bible was God's words and it was true, and that was the end of the matter. Besides, I really didn't have access to any other materials to research the actual history of the bible anyway. Moreover, even if I DID happen to run across something that contradicted the bible teachings, it was NOT TO BE read/studied/considered in any way, or else you risked being condemned to hell. Scary shit for a little kid.

Nowadays, on the other hand, more and more people across the globe have almost instant access to just about anything they want to know. Heck, on this site alone I can chat with people halfway around the world and learn firsthand about different societies/cultures. This was in the realm of science fiction fantasy when I was a kid, but it is now simply a part of life that is taken for granted. And THAT is where your specialized teams of religious apologists come into play. The main-name public figures in this field are true experts in word manipulation and weaknesses in the human psyche. And they have to be in order to counter all the true scientific and historic material available to more and more people every day. Moreover, average Joe and Jane now have access to sites where they can exchange ideas with those who study in specialized fields such as history, biology, astrophysics, etc. Again, apologetics to the rescue of religious dogma. If they muddy the waters enough to create even the slightest amount of doubt, those who still want to cling to their chosen faith will happily accept the words of a "fellow Christian/Muslim/Jew", especially if that fellow theist is labeled as an "expert". Therefore, to me at least, it really is no big mystery why apolegetics works so well for many people.

watchman's picture
@Laceyq ….

@Laceyq ….

What I always found weird was the way that its all there …. attested to in the Bible...… and they still deny /ignore it all..... you've probably already got all this..... but I've got it in my notes …. so I'll drop it here....if that's ok with you.....

Ez ....635 BC

8:10 So I went in and saw; and behold every form of creeping things, and abominable beasts,
and all the idols of the house of Israel, pourtrayed upon the wall round about.

8:11 And there stood before them seventy men of the ancients of the house of Israel,
and in the midst of them stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan, with every man his censer in his hand;
and a thick cloud of incense went up.

8:14 Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the LORD's house which was toward the north; and,
behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.

8:16 And he brought me into the inner court of the LORD's house, and, behold, at the door of the
temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men,
with their backs toward the temple of the LORD, and their faces toward the east; and they
worshipped the sun toward the east.

Jer ...626.BC

3:6 The LORD said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king, Hast thou seen that which
backsliding Israel hath done?
she is gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot.

3:7 And I said after she had done all these things, Turn thou unto me. But she returned not.
And her treacherous sister Judah saw it.

3:8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her
away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went
and played the harlot also.

3:9 And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and
committed adultery with stones and with stocks.

3:10 And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto me with her whole heart,
but feignedly, saith the LORD.

3:11 And the LORD said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous
Judah.

7:9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and
walk after other gods whom ye know not;

7:17 Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?

7:18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough,
to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods,
that they may provoke me to anger.

7:31 And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom,
to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded them not, neither came
it into my heart.

8:1 At that time, saith the LORD, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones
of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the
inhabitants of Jerusalem, out of their graves:

8:2 And they shall spread them before the sun, and the moon, and all the host of heaven, whom
they have loved, and whom they have served, and after whom they have walked, and whom they
have sought, and whom they have worshipped: they shall not be gathered, nor be buried; they
shall be for dung upon the face of the earth.

10:2 Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.

10:3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.

10:4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

10:5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil,
neither also is it in them to do good. ########

16:11 Then shalt thou say unto them, Because your fathers have forsaken me, saith the LORD, and have walked after other gods, and have served them,
and have worshipped them, and have forsaken me, and have not kept my law;

17:1 The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron, and with the point of a diamond: it is graven upon the table of their heart, and upon the horns of your altars;

17:2 Whilst their children remember their altars and their groves by the green trees upon the high hills.

19:4 Because they have forsaken me, and have estranged this place, and have burned incense in it unto other gods, whom neither they nor their fathers have known, nor the kings of Judah, and have filled this place with the blood of innocents;

19:5 They have built also the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings unto Baal, which I commanded not, nor spake it, neither came it into my mind.

44:16 As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee.

44:17 But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven,
and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah,
and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.

44:18 But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto
her, we have wanted all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.

44:19 And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven, and poured out drink offerings unto her,
did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her, without our men?

In the book of Genesis, God used a plural pronoun to refer to himself (herself, itself, or themselves),
implying that there is more than one god up there.
And God said, let us make man in our image. Genesis 1:26
And the Lord God said, Behold, then man is become as one of us, to know good and evil. Genesis 3:22
Let us go down, and there confound their language. Genesis 11:7
The Old Testament God is a "god of gods" who is worshiped by the other gods..
For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords. Deuteronomy 10:17
Worship him, all ye gods. Psalm 97:7
O give thanks unto the God of gods. Psalm 136:2
No other god is like him.
Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord. Psalm 86:8
He is better than the other gods.
Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? Exodus 15:11
Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods. Exodus 18:11
Thou shalt have no other gods before me. ... Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them.
Exodus 20:3-5
What God is there in heaven or in earth, that can do according to thy works? Deuteronomy 3:24
Our Lord is above all gods. Psalm 135:5
The other gods will die someday.
The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth,
and from under these heavens. Jeremiah 10:11
The Hebrew God judges the other gods.
And against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment. Exodus 12:12
Upon their gods also the LORD executed judgments. Numbers 33:4
God standeth in the congregation of the mighty, he judgeth among the gods. Psalm 82:1
And will punish them.
I will punish the multitude of No, and Pharaoh, and Egypt, with their gods. Jeremiah 46:25
The Lord will be terrible to them: for he will famish all the gods of the earth. Zephaniah 2:11
He is a jealous God (whose name is Jealous). So he forbids us to "go after" or worship any of his
competitors.
For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. Exodus 34:14
Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you; (For the LORD thy God is a jealous God among you.) Deuteronomy 6:14-15
Thou shalt not ... go after other gods to serve them. Deuteronomy 28:14
If you give God glory, he'll go easy on you and all your other gods.
Ye shall give glory unto the God of Israel: peradventure he will lighten his hand from off you,
and from off your gods. 1 Samuel 6:5
And go not after other gods to serve them, and to worship them, and provoke me not to anger
with the works of your hands; and I will do you no hurt. Jeremiah 25:6
But you must fear God more than all the other gods.
The Lord ... is to be feared above all gods. 1 Chronicles 16:25
For the Lord ... is to be feared above all gods. Psalm 96:4
Don't sacrfifice to any of the other gods. (Or God will kill you.)
He that sacrificeth unto any god, save unto the LORD only, he shall be utterly destroyed. Exodus 22:20
Don't put any of the other gods before him.
Thou shalt have none other gods before me. Deuteronomy 5:7
Don't make a covenant with them.
Thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor with their gods. Exodus 23:32
Don't burn incense to them.
I will utter my judgments against them ... who have forsaken me, and have burned incense
unto other gods. Jeremiah 1:16
Or even mention their names.
Make no mention of the name of other gods, neither let it be heard out of thy mouth. Exodus 23:13
Put away your father's gods.
Fear the Lord ... and put away the gods which your fathers served. Joshua 24:14
And stay away from the god named Chemosh.
Wilt not thou possess that which Chemosh thy god giveth thee to possess? Judges 11:24
But don't revile the other gods.
Thou shalt not revile the gods. Exodus 22:28
Other people served other gods (as did Abraham's father Terah).
Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, even Terah, the father of Abraham,
and the father of Nachor: and they served other gods. Joshua 24:2
And a witch once saw gods going up to heaven.
And the king said unto her, Be not afraid: for what sawest thou? And the woman said unto Saul,
I saw gods ascending out of the earth. 1 Samuel 28:13

Sorry for the wall of text …. but...……

Then there's that unfortunate business with the bronze snakes...….

http://www.keyway.ca/htm2003/20030818.htm

Daniel's picture
Hi I am new here my name is

Hi I am new here my name is Daniel , I have learned more about the bronze snakes at https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nehushtan

watchman's picture
@Daniel ….

@Daniel ….

Greetings & Welcome

Grinseed's picture
@Laceyq

@Laceyq

We can be certain of the history of Judaism's early polytheism because its all in the Bible.
From Abraham to Moses and on to the Babylonian exile around 700BC the Jewish never closely followed the fiats of Yahweh and they constantly displayed a lack of constancy in worshipping just him. Baal and Asherah were some of the fellow gods of Yahweh or El as he was formerly known in the early pantheon and there were persistent revivals for the other gods when hardship hit the common peasant Jewish farming communities. If you want to be a successful god you really need to make your worshippers lives successful and abundant otherwise you lose their interest.

Think of the Exodus. The children of Israel experienced the miracles of the twelve plagues of Egypt, that Yahweh performed just to show how powerful he was. The Nile turned to blood, the insects, frogs, flies, boils, the endless darkness and the defining and heartless event of the Passover not to mention the parting of the Red Sea and what happens?

A few weeks later in Moses' absence at the foot of Mt Sinai, the people, getting bored and fidgety hanging around in the wilderness, encourage Amos who is destined to be the supreme Hebrew priest, to craft a golden calf for pagan worship!
After witnessing Yahweh's power these Hebrew goatherders would have to have been really stupid to want to worship another deity. It makes you wonder why a even a god would bother. (Yes, I know, another explanation is the 12 plagues and the Red Sea incident and the Exodus never really happened and it is all a priestly fantasy.)

And on it goes. The OT is not a story about the loving and requited relationship between god and goatherders. Their god is continually smiting the poor buggers for disobedience to the laws that the priesthood, heavily invested in god's decrees, have busily written up. By the time you get to just before the Babylonian exile, Solomon's temple in Jerusalem has a section devoted to Ishtar, housing temple prostitutes (Isaiah writes about employing one, reasonable rates apparently).

The priests of Judah still adhering to Mosaic law, have witnessed the entire kingdom of Israel being taken into captivity and getting lost to history. So understanding the local politics better than anyone, they endeavour to save their livelihoods from the Babylonians and discover a 'lost' book supposedly written by Moses (its Deuteronomy) detailing how Yahweh demanded the destruction of pagan temples in Canaan else bad shit would happen. King Josiah freaked and complied. And some time later, after Josiah is executed in Babylon, the prophet Isaiah meets refugee women in Egypt who complain that everything had been fine until the priests and soldiers had destroyed Ishtar's shrines in Judah. Oh vey, indeed.

In the ancient world there were many pagan cults and religions and they all got on peaceably with each other particularly under Pax Romana. They practiced syncretism, the exchange and melding of different ideas and beliefs of other religions. It was not unusual for a member of one cult to be a priest of another. Monotheism was regarded as bizarre. Why put all your hopes on just one god when there were so many to choose from? No wonder the Romans lacked patience with Jews and Christians who, some of them at least, preferred death for blasphemy rather than to perform the most token effort of sacrifice to the state gods. They could even buy the licence from shonky Roman officials that said they had performed the state sacrifice.

After the experience of the exile Judaism changed. It survived the lack of a temple and they felt their god had followed them into captivity and they managed to keep the Mosaic Laws (they actually fared better than the denizens of Israel because they were allowed by the Babylonians to practice their faith as slaves). And they fully adapted to the idea of monotheism apparently to the utter delight of Yahweh.

Christianity simply could not accept any syncretism. As the faith centres around the resurrection of Yeshua as an expression of Yahweh's love there's an absolute need to focus faith on the one god. Christianity remains monotheistic, sort of, if you overlook the Trinity and the 30,000 variations. I don't think many professed christians seriously care or much know about the origins or history of their religion. It provides comfort and when you are satisfied with just that nothing else really much matters, not even the quest for truth, particularly when you are assured by others that you have already found it.

cranky47's picture
@ Laceyq

@ Laceyq

How sure?

Well, I think the material I'm about to post is a lot more credible than anything contained in the bible .There are few certainties in ancient history ,and none in the bible.(old and new testaments) :

"In the oldest biblical literature, Yahweh is a storm-and-warrior deity[2] who leads the heavenly army against Israel's enemies.[3] At that time the Israelites worshipped Yahweh alongside a variety of Canaanite gods and goddesses, including El, Asherah and Baal,[4] but in time El and Yahweh became conflated,[5] El-linked epithets such as El Shaddai came to be applied to Yahweh alone,[6] and other gods and goddesses such as Baal and Asherah were absorbed into the Yahwistic religion.[7] In the 9th through to the 6th centuries the Yahwistic religion separated itself from its Canaanite heritage as Yahweh became the main god of the Kingdom of Israel (Samaria) and of Judah,[8] and over time the royal court and Temple in Jerusalem promoted Yahweh as the god of the entire cosmos, possessing all the positive qualities previously attributed to the other gods ---"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yahweh

Jews like to claim that monotheistic Judaism dates from ca 2000 bce with the Abrahamic covenant . As far as I can tell, Judaism remained polytheistic until well after the alleged exodus .

It's interesting to note that YHWH did not claim to be the ONLY god. In the ten commandments, he commanded only:

Traditional translation (for example Aryeh Kaplan [1]) is as follows:
(20:3) "Do not have any gods before Me. Do not represent (such gods) by any carved statue or picture or anything in the heaven above or the earth below or in the water below the land. Do not bow down to or worship them."

https://thiaoouba.com/first_commandment.htm

There is no consensus for the time of the exodus. The article linked below is worth a glance

https://www.thoughtco.com/when-was-the-biblical-exodus-118323

Archaeologists Israel Finkelstein and Neil Siberman have written that they found hundreds of female deity figures dating to ca 300 bce. That suggest that although the state religion may have been monotheistic, many of the people were not.

My references:

The Bible Unearthed: Archaeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of Its Sacred Texts, a book published in 2001, discusses the archaeology of Israel and its relationship to the origins and content of the Hebrew Bible. The authors are Israel Finkelstein, Professor of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University, and Neil Asher Silberman, an archaeologist, historian and contributing editor to Archaeology Magazine.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bible_Unearthed

Did God Have a Wife?: Archaeology and Folk Religion in Ancient Israel, (Eerdmans, ISBN 0-8028-2852-3, 2005),[1] is a book by Syro-Palestinian archaeologist William G. Dever, Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Archeology and Anthropology at the University of Arizona. Did God Have a Wife? was intended as a popular work making available to the general public the evidence long known to archaeologists regarding ancient Israelite religion: namely that the Israelite god of antiquity (before 600 BCE), Yahweh, had a consort, that her name was Asherah, and that she was part of the Canaanite pantheon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Did_God_Have_a_Wife%3F

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@Cranky

@Cranky

Nice one son. I love the University of Tel Aviv Archeology stuff. I subscribe to their publications. What a wealth of information they contain and so many silver bullets to be used against the vampire of religion.

David Killens's picture
My personal perception is

My personal perception is more generalized. Almost all early religions had multiple gods. And many cultures that surrounded the Jewish camp were polytheistic, from the Greeks to the Egyptians to the Babylonians.

Everything evolves, and this includes religion. At the instant of the big bang, there was just pure heat and energy. That early universe went through an evolution in energy. Then that energy was converted to matter, and the universe went through an evolution of matter. Families evolve, laws evolve, politics evolve. And so does religion.

And it appears that once the concept of a single god was introduced, religion would also evolve into a single god system. In business terms, that is also coined as consolidation. Why have multiple temples and priests when you can consolidate all of them into one entity?

Segev Moran's picture
The bible (Hebrew) itself

The bible (Hebrew) itself tells the story that Abraham was polytheist.
He was the first to realize that polytheism is nonsense.
Abraham depicts the first human to realize (after Adam) that there is much more to reality than what meets the eye :)

cranky47's picture
@Segev Moran.

@Segev Moran.

"The bible (Hebrew) itself tells the story that Abraham was polytheist.
He was the first to realize that polytheism is nonsense.
Abraham depicts the first human to realize (after Adam) that there is much more to reality than what meets the eye :)"

My goodness, we are fond of silly unfounded claims.

Putting aside that the Torah is the mythology of Judaism .That Adam and Abraham are mythological (--are you seriously claiming that all human beings came from Adam and Eve? )

Ever heard of Zoroastrianism?

"Zoroastrianism or Mazdayasna is one of the world's oldest continuously practiced religions. It is centered in a dualistic cosmology of good and evil and an eschatology predicting the ultimate conquest of evil with theological elements of henotheism, monotheism/monism, and polytheism.[1][2][3][4] Ascribed to the teachings of the Iranian-speaking spiritual leader Zoroaster (also known as Zarathushtra),[5] it exalts an uncreated and benevolent deity of wisdom, Ahura Mazda (Wise Lord), as its supreme being.[6] Major features of Zoroastrianism, such as messianism, judgment after death, heaven and hell, and free will may have influenced other religious and philosophical systems, including Second Temple Judaism, Gnosticism, Greek philosophy,[7] Christianity, Islam,[8] the Bahá'í Faith, and Buddhism.[9]

"With possible roots dating back to the second millennium BCE, Zoroastrianism enters recorded history in the 5th century BCE.[10] Along with a Mithraic Median prototype and a Zurvanist Sassanid successor, it served as the state religion of the pre-Islamic Iranian empires for more than a millennium, from around 600 BCE to 650 CE. Zoroastrianism declined from the 7th century onwards following the Muslim conquest of Persia of 633–654.[11][full citation needed] Recent estimates place the current number of Zoroastrians at around 110,000–120,000,[12] with most living in India and in Iran; their number has been thought to be declining.[13][14] "

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zoroastrianism

Segev Moran's picture
"Putting aside that the Torah

"Putting aside that the Torah is the mythology of Judaism .That Adam and Abraham are mythological (--are you seriously claiming that all human beings came from Adam and Eve? )"...
Lol.. no. neither does Judaism :)
Only a person who lacks much understanding of the Jewish teachings will think that is the case.
The OP wrote about how Judaism evolved from Polytheistic religions. I simply noted that it is also written in the bible it self :)

cranky47's picture
@Sergev Moran

@Sergev Moran

"Only a person who lacks much understanding of the Jewish teachings will think that is the case"

Absurd ad hominem. How could you possibly know ?

"Lol.. no. neither does Judaism :)" In fact that is exactly what the Torah says, in the Book Of Genesis. Of course I'm aware that just about the only people on the planet who still take Genesis as literally true are literalist Christians .

I was responding to this:

""The bible (Hebrew) itself tells the story that Abraham was polytheist.
He was the first to realize that polytheism is nonsense.
Abraham depicts the first human to realize (after Adam) that there is much more to reality than what meets the eye :)" This is a claim, not an argument.

Polytheism is no less rational than any other religious belief, and is still widely practised. Just about every religion has its own internal logic. To simply dismiss a belief system as nonsense is arrogant and ignorant.

Since you seem to have a superior knowledge of Judaism; Are you a rabbi? Jewish? Orthodox or Reform? At which university did you obtain your undergraduate degree? In which discipline? ---or are you simply another autodidact with a big mouth?

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Cranky

@ Cranky

He is a programmer, so he claims....sound familiar?

Must change me socks...thanks for the reminder....

cranky47's picture
@Old man shouts

@Old man shouts

He do have that flavour. As a general principle, I've found that people with real knowledge don't need to attack the less knowledgeable. Mostly, they are patient, and pleased that you want to learn. I could name a goodly number here, but I don't want to embarrass them.

OT: Curiosity; What's happened to reedemption? Has his name been removed from the golden book?

Cognostic's picture
Reedemption and Tittyala

Reedemption and Tittyala (Whatever) got caught with their fingers in the cookie jar without permission. Running posts from this site on other sites and posts from other sites on this site. Users of the other sites popped in to complain. Enter the mods and it is all ancient history after that.

Segev Moran's picture
I cant see why stating

I cant see why stating something makes no sense is arrogant.
Polytheism makes no sense.
And yes, i guess I have a big mouth ;)
I study the bible for 10 years now.
3 years back i thought it is nothing more than a collection of nice stories.
Today i know much more, yet superior knowledge is far from what i have.

How much knowledge do you have? what degree do you have? or are you just the same as me? ;)

David Killens's picture
"or are you just the same as

"or are you just the same as me?"

Of course not, I am not dishonest.

Nor do I posture myself as having superior knowledge over others. When one begins to brag about how long they have studied a subject or how much they know, yes, they are attempting to establish a knowledge heirarchy, with the fool on top.

Just ten years of bible study? Heck I did more time doing that in Sunday School.

Tin-Man's picture
@Segev

@Segev

Why the hell are you still in the Atheist Hub??? Are you incapable of showing even just a bit of personal integrity?

Cognostic's picture
@Segev Moran: Polytheism

@Segev Moran: Polytheism makes no sense. And yet the Jews were Polytheistic until they became Henotheistic. There is very little evidence in the Bible that they have progressed past Henotheism. How do you interpret the first commandment? Thou shalt have no other GODS before me? The Hebrew Scriptures sometimes claim that there is only one God, and sometimes that Yahweh is the greatest among many gods. And

God said, let us make man in our image. Genesis 1:26

And the Lord God said, Behold, then man is become as one of us, to know good and evil. Genesis 3:22

Let us go down, and there confound their language. Genesis 11:7

For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords. Deuteronomy 10:17

Worship him, all ye gods. Psalm 97:7

O give thanks unto the God of gods. Psalm 136:2

Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord. Psalm 86:8

Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? Exodus 15:11

Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods. Exodus 18:11

Thou shalt have no other gods before me. ... Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them. Exodus 20:3-5

What God is there in heaven or in earth, that can do according to thy works? Deuteronomy 3:24

Our Lord is above all gods. Psalm 135:5

The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens. Jeremiah 10:11

And against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment. Exodus 12:12

Upon their gods also the LORD executed judgments. Numbers 33:4

God standeth in the congregation of the mighty, he judgeth among the gods. Psalm 82:1

For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. Exodus 34:14

Thou shalt not ... go after other gods to serve them. Deuteronomy 28:14

The Lord ... is to be feared above all gods. 1 Chronicles 16:25

For the Lord ... is to be feared above all gods. Psalm 96:4

THIS IS GETTING BORING...... THE LIST GOES ON AND ON AND ON...... ARE YOU FAMILIAR AT ALL WITH JEWISH HISTORY OR WHY THERE ARE MANY GODS IN THE OT?

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@! Cog

@! Cog

Oh come on, Uncle Sergey has already explained that. YOU DON"T KNOW HOW TO READ IT...see? There he is is residing at 'fourth level' understanding after a whopping 10 YEARS (wow) study...(in between learning how to build websites).

Jeez, chimp fucking get a grip and learn from the master willya? AND STOP THROWING POO!

Cognostic's picture
Old man shouts ...: Great

Old man shouts ...: Great. 10 years of study and a level 4 certificate won't get you a discount on bananas at the local farmer's market.

cranky47's picture
@Segev

@Segev

"How much knowledge do you have? what degree do you have? or are you just the same as me? ;)"

That's like asking " how long is a piece of string?"

University educated?. Yes, seeing as you ask . I have expert knowledge in 3 or 4 areas of study, know a little about many more and am totally ignorant in thousands of others. .

I have no idea how much we have in common. I do not claim knowledge when I have little or none ,and don't insult people for disagreeing with me. I appreciate and am grateful for the opportunity to learn I have on this forum, as well as the pleasure of conversing with some like minds. . I'm sorry that you do not value those things.

David Killens's picture
@ cranky47

@ cranky47

"Since you seem to have a superior knowledge of Judaism; Are you a rabbi? Jewish? Orthodox or Reform? At which university did you obtain your undergraduate degree? In which discipline? ---or are you simply another autodidact with a big mouth?"

His tactics are obvious, trying to place himself as the one with the superior knowledge and all of us as simple children who need to be led by the hand. He has not demonstrated superior knowledge, he just states we lack the knowledge.

Cognostic's picture
This is the best I can do for

This is the best I can do for you. Just play it while you are bopping around the house. I tried to put it into words a few times but it's a bit complex. It's a big question.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJNNg-CT7Gw&t=5552s

CyberLN's picture
SEGEV MORAN, as you are no

SEGEV MORAN, as you are no longer atheist, you are not allowed to post in the Atheist Hub. If you do so again, I will ban you.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Cyber

@ Cyber

*Leads the Chant" Ban him! BAN him! BAN HIM!

Self congratulatory pussies should never be allowed to sully the fragrant atmosphere of the Atheist Hub.

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