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In what way were Socrates, Galileo, Newton, Pythagoras, Jesus Christ, Luther, and...

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mhie-nhel | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 27, 2009 at 12:01 AM via web

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In what way were Socrates, Galileo, Newton, Pythagoras, Jesus Christ, Luther, and Copernicus misunderstood?

explanation for to be great is to be misunderstood and nothing can bring you peace.nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles

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frizzyperm | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted February 11, 2009 at 1:51 PM (Answer #2)

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All the people you mention upset society with radical new ideas and discoveries. (You definitely should have Charles Darwin on your list) Some of their ideas now seem old and comfotable to us (The world is round. The world goes round the sun. etc), but at the time, they challenged peoples' view of reality. If you try to radically change peoples' lives, they panic, because they are frightened you might destroy everything.

Generally, old people, powerful people and some religious people do not like things to change because their lives might be worse after the change. They would rather be comfortable and unchallenged. They feel safe with what they know and what they want to believe. They don't want to change.

For example, One hundred and fifty years ago, Darwin said we evolved from monkeys, despite ample proof of this clear and simple fact more than 50% of Americans still do not want to listen and desperately try to block it out. 150 years of wanting to misunderstand the truth. But Darwin was right and there is nothing anyone can do about it. He stood on his principles and spoke the truth.

In the end, you cannot stop a great idea. You can kill the person who had the idea, but you cannot kill the idea.

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al8797 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 11, 2009 at 1:51 PM (Answer #3)

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Enlightened individuals who see the truth are frequently misunderstood - they see things clearly through intense focus and purpose - for they are without equal peers or distractions.   Focused thoughts are the greatest power in the universe.

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timbrady | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted February 11, 2009 at 1:51 PM (Answer #4)

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All of these said or did things that went contrary to the common knowledge of their time.  In general, they have been proven correct.  It's a little difficult to see Jesus/Luther as correct since their position(s) were more moral than practical, but they certainly challenged the common moral positions of their times and Jesus will killed for the threat he posed to the Jewish religion of his times.  Galileo was recently "reinstated" by the very Church that excommunicated him.

We are often put in positions where we have to make a decision between two or more alternatives.  When Emerson says that nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles, I think he is telling us not to worry about making decisions to please anyone, since we can never please both/all sides.  Instead, we should make decisions that come from our sense/knowledge of what is right because then we can always sleep at night.  The world may "whip us with its displeasure," but this is nowhere near as painful as whipping ourselves.

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jillyfish | Student, Undergraduate | Valedictorian

Posted February 12, 2009 at 3:31 AM (Answer #5)

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All of these said or did things that went contrary to the common knowledge of their time.  In general, they have been proven correct.  It's a little difficult to see Jesus/Luther as correct since their position(s) were more moral than practical, but they certainly challenged the common moral positions of their times and Jesus will killed for the threat he posed to the Jewish religion of his times.  Galileo was recently "reinstated" by the very Church that excommunicated him.

We are often put in positions where we have to make a decision between two or more alternatives.  When Emerson says that nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles, I think he is telling us not to worry about making decisions to please anyone, since we can never please both/all sides.  Instead, we should make decisions that come from our sense/knowledge of what is right because then we can always sleep at night.  The world may "whip us with its displeasure," but this is nowhere near as painful as whipping ourselves.

 "Jesus was killed for the threat that he posed to the jewish religion." I agree with everything you said Tim, except this quote.

Jesus was arrested, tried and executed by The Romans, not the Jews. Blaming the Jews for Jesus's death was part of Paul / Constantine et al Romanising Christianity. The Bible was written by the winners, The Romans. You remember 'The Da Vinci Code' and 'The Council of Nicocea'? The early councils weren't to hide Mary but to sanctify the Romans, demonise the troublesome Jews and outlaw various 'heretical' eastern Christian sects.

The problem for The councils was, how could The Roman Empire control Christianity if they'd crucified Christ? How could Popes and Emperors in Rome (and/or Byzantium) have authority when their authority was previously used to kill God? 

Well, with a few... little... changes... A Passover Lottery. The Jews Choose Barabas. The Roman Governor Washes His Hands. Not Rome's Fault. Blame The Jews... Bim Bam Bosh! Job Done.

In Matthew, The Jewish Crowd choose Barrabas and shout, "His blood be upon us and on our children"

How very convenient.

How very thoughtful of the Jewish mob to appreciate the historical significance of their actions and verbalise their children's eternal responsibilty for the crucifiction of Jesus.

Millions of European Jews have died because Rome dodged responsibility for crucifying Christ. It is time it stopped.

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billybobberkey | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted February 12, 2009 at 4:47 AM (Answer #6)

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Jesus Christ  was the chosen messiah  to save the Jews but the Jews felt threatened  and handed him over  to the roman guards  . in turn the romans cruciified him .  He  was raised from the dead and  remain on earth for 40 days after that.

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linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted February 12, 2009 at 12:41 PM (Answer #7)

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Jesus was killed in fulfillment of biblical prophecy. Whether his execution was instigated by the Romans or by the Jews doesn't matter. His sacrifice was willing and necessary to bring about God's kingdom on earth.

Galileo and Luther were not misunderstood. It was clear to everyone that what they were advocating went against accepted beliefs. They were labeled heretics because their ideas were unacceptable.

The same is true for Socrates. He was charged with corrupting the youth, teaching them ideas that were contrary to conventional thinking.

These people weren't misunderstood. They were dangerous.

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timbrady | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted February 12, 2009 at 1:39 PM (Answer #8)

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A question for linda-allen, #7.   Luther is up for grabs.  You might see him as dangerous if you were a Catholic, but what was going on at the time needed reform and he was the questioner.  The same may be true for Socrates, although it is generally accepted by scholars that corrupting the youth was just a front.  But Galileo was right, not dangerous ... unless you stand for the established view which is about to be set aside by the truth.

Is this the sense that you are using "dangerous" --- that people who bring new ideas are a danger to established ideas?  Because I certainly can't see these men as dangerous in any other way.

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enotechris | College Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted February 12, 2009 at 5:13 PM (Answer #9)

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It's important to understand ideas and the potential conflicts they generated (or in some cases, continue to generate) within the historical time they were first expressed.  Certainly no one today gets upset about which celestial body revolves around which, but in the day, this marked a fundamental change in how cosmology and God had to be viewed. Perhaps its a point of pride -- if someone believes something long enough, to alter that belief may make them feel foolish.  Were each of these men misunderstood?  Perhaps they were completely understood, and silenced for the changes their thoughts would command.  When no one's left to be threatened by a new idea, it can be accepted.

A few points -- humanity did not descend from monkeys.  All primates have a common ancestor.  Monkeys are a parallel evolutionary track.

From what we know historically, Jesus was set up by both Roman and Jewish powers; neither group is innocent. (http://www.livius.org/caa-can/caiaphas/caiaphas.htm)

And if we can accept the dialogue from Jesus Christ Superstar:

Pilate -

And so the king / Is once again my guest / And why is this? / Was Herod unimpressed?

Caiaphas -

We come to Rome / To sentence Nazareth / We have no law / To put a man to death

We need him crucified it's all you have to do.....

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frizzyperm | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted February 13, 2009 at 5:23 AM (Answer #10)

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Jesus was killed in fulfillment of biblical prophecy. Whether his execution was instigated by the Romans or by the Jews doesn't matter. His sacrifice was willing and necessary to bring about God's kingdom on earth.

Galileo and Luther were not misunderstood. It was clear to everyone that what they were advocating went against accepted beliefs. They were labeled heretics because their ideas were unacceptable.

The same is true for Socrates. He was charged with corrupting the youth, teaching them ideas that were contrary to conventional thinking.

These people weren't misunderstood. They were dangerous.

It certainly matters to the millions of European Jews who were subjected to deadly anti-semitism from Christians for the last 2000 years. Christianity has found it very convenient to label their religious ancestors as abominable and guilty murderers.

Jesus was a populist Jew speaker. He was crucified by the provincial Roman authorities in Jerusalem. They are the only facts that we have. The proven changes to the bible in the 3rd and 4th centuries shift the blame away from Roman Administration onto the 'evil, half-human Jews.' As soon as the Roman Empire became officially Christian, Constantine began targeting the Jews as Christ Killers. It was nasty, deliberate propaganda.

And millions and millions have died because of it. Only 65 years ago, six million jews were gassed to death for being 'sub-human'... I think it matters a lot that Christians still insist on blaming Jews for Jesus's death. Jewish authorities stoned people to death whereas Jesus was crucified by the Roman Provincial Govenor, Pontius Pilate.

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jillyfish | Student, Undergraduate | Valedictorian

Posted February 13, 2009 at 6:29 AM (Answer #11)

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Did you know in 1543 Martin Luther (one of the names cited here as a free thinker) wrote a book called Von Den Juden und Ihren Lugen (On The Jews and Their Lies).

He claimed the Jews were 'the devil's people'. He said they were, "base, whoring people, that is, no people of God, and their boast of lineage, circumcision and law must be accounted as filth... [The synagogue is] a defiled bride, yes an incorrigible whore and an evil slut... [The Jews are] full of the devils's feces... which they wallow in like swine."

He advocated the burning of synagogues and the killing of Jews. He said, "we are not at fault in slaying them." He advocated their forced labour and the confiscation of their property and led large campaigns to drive them out of Germany 'for all time'. (That sounds very similar to another, more recent campaign against the Jews, doesn't it?)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther#Luther_and_antisemitism

Under the Nazis, many German protestant churches used Luther's text to support the expulsion of the Jews and did not speak out while millionsof Jewish men, women and children were sent off to the death camps. Luther is still upheld today as a moral crusader (as this thread shows) yet he advocated mass Genocide and used doctored 'Biblical facts' to justify it.

But we conveniently ignore that part of Luther's influence and contribution. It would seem that Christians can have very selective and subjective memories.

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billybobberkey | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted March 20, 2009 at 8:55 AM (Answer #12)

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Did you know in 1543 Martin Luther (one of the names cited here as a free thinker) wrote a book called Von Den Juden und Ihren Lugen (On The Jews and Their Lies).

He claimed the Jews were 'the devil's people'. He said they were, "base, whoring people, that is, no people of God, and their boast of lineage, circumcision and law must be accounted as filth... [The synagogue is] a defiled bride, yes an incorrigible whore and an evil slut... [The Jews are] full of the devils's feces... which they wallow in like swine."

He advocated the burning of synagogues and the killing of Jews. He said, "we are not at fault in slaying them." He advocated their forced labour and the confiscation of their property and led large campaigns to drive them out of Germany 'for all time'. (That sounds very similar to another, more recent campaign against the Jews, doesn't it?)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther#Luther_and_antisemitism

Under the Nazis, many German protestant churches used Luther's text to support the expulsion of the Jews and did not speak out while millionsof Jewish men, women and children were sent off to the death camps. Luther is still upheld today as a moral crusader (as this thread shows) yet he advocated mass Genocide and used doctored 'Biblical facts' to justify it.

But we conveniently ignore that part of Luther's influence and contribution. It would seem that Christians can have very selective and subjective memories.

 

 wikipedia doesn't count as a  source because anybody could edit it. but  i do have to say that this is a lot of nonsense , Jillyfish.

 

BTW, i'm a christian. I don't have a selective mind. I DO have a sebjective mind though. message me if  anybody has a problem.

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alexb2 | eNotes Employee

Posted March 20, 2009 at 9:01 AM (Answer #13)

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Speaking of Martin Luther and his anti-semitic views, you can read his tract The Jews and Their Lies online. It's available in many places, including at the Jewish Virtual Library. Here is one quote:

First to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians.

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marilynn07 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted March 21, 2009 at 1:47 AM (Answer #14)

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OK, Martin Luther was an anti-Semite, something he shared with almost everyone in Europe who was not Jewish at the time.  He still succeeded in breaking the stranglehold of the Catholic Church on society and Christianity, at a time when that Church was both far removed from the teachings of Jesus, and impeding progress of all types.

Jesus was executed by Romans at the insistence of the Jewish leaders, because he was showing their hypocracy.  The only people he ever criticized were "religious" people.  And no matter how many times someone tells me, "Josephus never mentions Jesus," he does, in vol. 19 of Jewish Antiquities.  So did every Roman historian of the time and the following generation.  The way Jesus was treated is what happens when you have religious leaders with political power- because power really does corrupt.  If that sounds like the Religious Right, ultra-orthodox Zionists and Muslim terrorists, that's not an accident.

Socrates, Galileo, Newton, et al all were using their brains, thinking deeply about their observations and what those observations might mean in relation to mankind and the universe.  If you think hard about things and figure something out, you can about bet that someone is not going to like it.  People don't like being disturbed from the usual sleep-walking through life sort of mindset.  A sad fact, perhaps, but a true one.

As for Darwin, well, the theory of evolution has been useful.  It stimulated a lot of serious thought and research into the nature of life and how species change form over time.  We have learned an immense amount of useful information about genetics and gametic mutation, and a great deal about somatic mutation (essentially "aging").  And I'm sure we'll learn more.  But at the same time we have learned so much that we now know for an absolute fact that one species cannot change into another species; everthing we have learned about biology tells us this.  Instead of adjusting our theories, we have let the scientific discussion break down into emotionalism.

What would any of the people we're discussing think about our society's inflexible mental fixation on any of this?  I think they'd tell us to stop thinking about what we want the universe to be like, and just experience it and think for ourselves.  That's why they were misunderstood, because their entire lives scream, "Think for yourself!"

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billybobberkey | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted June 8, 2009 at 11:22 AM (Answer #15)

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anti-Semite. What , exactly does that mean?

 

Martin Luther  was against Jews. I understand that . But, I do disagree  with the  idea of burning other nations things. I know that Jews defiled God's temples and what not  but- yet again- I have to disagree. God doesn't like it when we ruin things for others. just like parents.

 

Marilynn07 posted:

As for Darwin, well, the theory of evolution has been useful.  It stimulated a lot of serious thought and research into the nature of life and how species change form over time.  We have learned an immense amount of useful information about genetics and gametic mutation, and a great deal about somatic mutation (essentially "aging").  And I'm sure we'll learn more.  But at the same time we have learned so much that we now know for an absolute fact that one species cannot change into another species; everthing we have learned about biology tells us this.  Instead of adjusting our theories, we have let the scientific discussion break down into emotionalism.

 

Evolution is plain bull . I think that Scientists just made that up because they couldn't explain the GOOD BOOK to people .

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