What On Earth Will It Take?
Thou Art God!


Interpretation of the Traditional Ten Commandments of Moses

We (well most of us) know about the Ten Commandments. Herein I refer to them as the Ten Commandments of Moses, as purportedly handed down from God. I mean no disrespect here, just a slightly different viewpoint.

As we have previously discussed, formal and organized religion is mostly a set of rules, guidelines, interpretations and instructions on how to live one's life. While we in the USA primarily honor the rules and regulations known as Abrahamic religions. They are one of the three major divisions in comparative religion, along with Indian religions (Dharmic) and East Asian religions (Taoic).

Ten Abrahamic Commandments:

I.     I am the Lord your God. You shall have no other gods before Me.

II.    Do not make an image or any likeness of what is in the heavens above.

III.   Do not swear falsely by the name of the Lord.

IV.   Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy

V.    Honor your Father and your Mother

VI.   Do not murder

VII.  Do not commit adultery

VIII. Do not steal

IX.   Do not bear false witness against your neighbor

X.    Do not covet your neighbor's wife

The Prime Directives.

Consider the first three commandments:

I.   I am the Lord your God. You shall have no other gods before Me.

II.  Do not make an image or any likeness of what is in the heavens above.

III. Do not swear falsely by the name of the Lord.

I. The first commandment sets the basic rules as inviolable and place God above all others. Now consider the statement: Thou Art God in the light of this commandments. If you consider that the individual is indeed godlike, then these three principals support the concept of rational self interest and Objectivism. You place yourself, your godlike being ahead of all others.

Consider an in-flight emergency as instructed to place the oxygen mask on yourself before aiding children and/or others. This is rational self interest but NOT selfishness. If you die, are defeated or overcome, you are in no position to do anything, much less aid others! You may then choose to assist, aid or support others for your own self interest, as a matter of humanity and defined benefit that promotes your own well-being.

II. The second commandment, Do not make an image or any likeness of what is in the heavens above”, directs you to not worship another above yourself. Do not mindlessly follow another doctrine as it would conflict with the primary rule of objectivism and rational self interest. Pretty simple and quite obviously a directive to take responsibility for your own actions, follow your own path and not allow another to dictate how to live your life.

III. The third commandment, Do not swear falsely by the name of the Lord”, directs you to not falsely portray yourself as something that you are not. Don't swear or make claims that you cannot support, enforce or deliver. Put simply, put up or shut up!

Administrative Directives

The remainder of the commandments are more administrative and social in concept and delivery. They instruct how to best live a life that is fruitful, productive and otherwise supportive of your rational self interest.

IV. The forth commandment, “Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy”, is my favorite and is a rational directive that says that you cannot work yourself to death and expect to accomplish much of anything. As part of a rational self interest approach, you have to take care to rest and replenish your strength for the workdays ahead. In most interpretations, this 'day off' is deemed to include your entire family, household and even those who are in your employ. Makes perfect sense as we all need a break now and then. Whether it is Sunday, or another day, taking time to rest, relax and re-energize oneself, one's family, household and those in your employ is a sound concept.

V. The fifth commandment, “Honor your Father and your Mother”, lets you know that you are not all powerful. Someone else created YOU and you owe your very life to (at least) your Father and Mother (at least until cloning becomes prominent). This may also be related to the concept of civilized conduct and that we are all existing in a community that in many ways jointly is responsible to our continued well being, livelihood and existence. While rational self interest and an objectivism approach is part of the Thou Art God concept, it is not to be considered in a vacuum.

VI. The sixth commandment, “Do not murder”, continues to relate to civilized co-habitation of individuals. Rational Self Interest must be over-ridden by civilized rules of order. Indiscriminate murder as practiced by so many dictatorships and so called rulers, who tried to promote their godlike powers, cannot be tolerated in a civilized organization. The same rules apply to bureaucratic and dictatorial individuals who attempt to override the first commandment. They attempt to place themselves over the individual and his own rational self interest. Only a civilized mutually beneficial (i.e. contractual) relationship then sets rules of order should be honored.

VII. The seventh commandment, “Do not commit adultery”, again relates to a civilized rule of community. Adultery implies the breaking and non-adherence to a marital contract and thus considered a violation of societal and civilized practices. The rules of law provides for nullifying a contractual relationship as long as the parties are duly compensated.

VIII. The eighth commandment, “Do not steal”, is one that goes beyond simple theft. It relates to the bureaucratic theft of goods, real property and coinage in excess of mutually agreed to support of civilization and the related infrastructure. In modern times, this has been codified into tax laws whereby real property, coinage and other things of value are taken and redistributed unlawfully to others who have no earned or otherwise are deserving of such distributions. This is the common basis for socialistic and communistic principals; all of which have historically been miserable failures.

IX. The ninth commandment, “Do not bear false witness against your neighbor” goes hand in hand with the third commandment. This is a societal taboo that prohibits lying, cheating and other nefarious acts of untruthful behavior. False gossip, jealous and self righteous behavior is counter productive and impinges on another's rational self interest.

X. The tenth and final commandment, “Do not covet your neighbor's wife”, goes hand in glove with the seventh and eighth commandments. In additional it is usually interpreted to include jealousy and desire to control or otherwise impinge on another's rational self interest and individual rights/freedoms. This reinforces the concept of mutual self interest in contractual relationships and the illegal wish to interfere, disrupt or intercede in another's personal and contractual bond with another.

It should be noted that three of these Abrahamic Commandments deal with spousal ownership directly or implied. While we should discredit the concept of one's control over another as a violation of individual rights and attempt to override an individual's right to pursue their own individual rational self interest, society at the time considered females property and not individuals. This should give us pause to consider the source of many historical rules and laws that have no place in a civilized society pursuing the concept of Objectivism and rational self interest.

Age of Individualism