Tag Archives: divine law

Divine Law Sets the Boundaries Between the Social Contract and Natural Law

220px-Thomas_Hobbes_(portrait)The limits of human interaction are bounded by the state of nature and the state of the social contract. Each of these limits, however, is further limited by Divine Law.

In the state of nature, there are no rights of man and no laws to govern him, only freedoms to take what he can by force to enable him to extend the longevity and happiness of his life. In the state of nature, man has boundless freedom to take from others what he can, but the ensuing chaos leaves all but the strongest few with less happiness, less safety, and less life.

To improve the likelihood of achieving most men’s divine and natural goals, over time they entered into social contracts with others to establish societies. Through social contracts, man gave up natural freedoms that allowed him to take whatsoever he desired by force, but in giving up his natural freedoms, he gained the structure through which he could increase safety from having his happiness and life taken from others. The essence of the social contract became law, and the process of creating law was embodied in political society.

An uneasy balance between the social contract and natural rights has been our struggle of human existence ever since. Power struggles within tribes for dominance have shifted this balance through the many political systems to which we have subjected each other. And between tribes, the social contract was neglected and wars pitted tribe against tribe, executing organized natural law to shed blood for profit.

Within tribes, the struggle between social contracts and natural rights is bounded by the limits of authoritarianism and anarchy. Kings and priests shared authoritarianism in early societies. Today, most society’s powers are divided amongst representative governments and the “new kings” of the international, powerful, financial elite. Yet whether by kings, priests or financial elite, power is still bounded by the opposite limits of totalitarianism and the threat of revolution or devolution into anarchy.

Within the realm bounded by these firm human limits are the limits required by Divine Law. Divine Law suggests that neither of the limits of authoritarian control or of the natural state provide optimum communion with God. Both extremes take away from man’s divine purpose on Earth.

The Declaration of Independence recognized that Divine Law should govern man well before he ever is subjected to the extremes of human law. The founders agreed by signature that men are:

“endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights…That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness”

Declaration of Independence, 1776

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Divine Law is the Defense Over Addictive Power

1361966304_Victory parade in Red Square, Moscow, 24th June 1945.Is there a truly evil power that afflicts the world, is there a dark side as is portrayed in science fiction, is there universal force of evil that attempts to feed men? We suggest that capitalism is the economic system that balances this dark force for the good of nations but if such a dark force exists can it truly be contained? Consider this thought from the sci-fi writer Adam Turquine…

“Evil is not just a theory of paradox, but an actual entity that exists only for itself. From its ether of manifestation that is garlanded in perpetual darkness, it not only influences and seeks the ruination and destruction of everything that resides in our universe, but rushes to embrace its own oblivion as well.

To accomplish this, however, it must hide within the shroud of lies and deceit it spins to manipulate the weak-minded as well as those who choose to ally themselves with it for their own personal gain. For evil must rely on the self-serving interests of the arrogant, the lustful, the power-hungry, the hateful, and the greedy to feed and proliferate. This then becomes the condition of evil’s existence: the baneful ideologies of those who wantonly chose to ignore the needs and rights of others, inducing oppression, fear, pain, and even death throughout the cosmos. And by these means, evil seeks to supplant the balance of the universe with its perverse nature.

And once all that was good has been extinguished by corruption or annihilation, evil will then turn upon and consume what remains: particularly its immoral servants who have assisted its purpose so well … along with itself. And within that terrible instant of unimaginable exploding quantum fury, it will burn brighter than a trillion galaxies to herald its moment of ultimate triumph. But a moment is all that it shall be. And a micro-second later when the last amber burns and flickers out to the demise of dissolving ash, evil will leave its legacy of a totally devoid universe as its everlasting monument to eternal death.”

How does one that is not driven by the intoxication of evil power nonetheless gain an understanding of it. If it is power that skews men’s wages to the detriment of a nation, should we then not try to gain more than a vague understanding of it:

“The fairy tale belongs to the poor…I know of no fairy tale which upholds the tyrant, or takes the part of the strong against the weak. A fascist fairy tale is an absurdity.”
― Erik Christian Haugaard

“Power is a word the meaning of which we do not understand.”
― Leo Tolstoy

Perhaps we are lucky to have escaped a grasp of understanding for it seems there is no escape once one falls prey to its lure:

“In the beginning, the taste of power is sweet, savored on the tongue, like fine wine. It whispers promises in your ear and pretends to be your friend. It is easy to become addicted to this feeling.”
― Rahma Krambo

“Whoever has experienced the power and the unrestrained ability to humiliate another human being automatically loses his own sensations. Tyranny is a habit, it has its own organic life, it develops finally into a disease. The habit can kill and coarsen the very best man or woman to the level of a beast. Blood and power intoxicate … the return of the human dignity, repentance and regeneration becomes almost impossible.”
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky

For the masses of us who have not been tormented by the temptations of power, we are nonetheless victims of this obscure stranger:

“Power lacks moral or principles. It only has interests.”
― Horacio Castellanos Moya

“For the powerful, crimes are those that others commit.”
― Noam Chomsky

“The object of terrorism is terrorism. The object of oppression is oppression. The object of torture is torture. The object of murder is murder. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?…Power is not a means; it is an end.”
― George Orwell

“Station is the paradox of the world of my people, the limitation of our power within the hunger for power. It is gained through treachery and invites treachery against those who gain it. Those most powerful in Menzoberranzan spend their days watching over their shoulders, defending against the daggers that would find their backs. Their deaths usually come from the front.” -Drizzt Do’Urden”

“People with power always take advantage of those without power.”
― Christopher Pike

“It is the destiny of the weak to be devoured by the strong.”
― Otto von Bismarck

“Power brings a man many luxuries, but a clean pair of hands is seldom among them.”
― Robert Harris, Imperium

We Americans go about our quiet lives depending on our institutions of fairness and justice to govern the affairs of others over us yet it is power that directs our lives when we turn over our institutions to others:

“If we define an American fascist as one who in case of conflict puts money and power ahead of human beings, then there are undoubtedly several million fascists in the United States.”
― Henry A. Wallace

“What better way for a ruling class to claim and hold power than to pose as the defenders of the nation.”
― Christopher Hitchens

“All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities.”
― Frank Herbert

So then we must choose whether power will be our master:

“In this world, who can do a thing, will not;
And who would do it, cannot, I perceive:
Yet the will’s somewhat — somewhat, too, the power —
And thus we half-men struggle.”
― Robert Browning

“History shows that it does not matter who is in power or what revolutionary forces take over the government, those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they had in the beginning.”
― Carter G. Woodson

Unless we are so far removed from power, it is hard for us to see it influence over us:

“What, to the American slave, is your Fourth of July?
I answer: a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sounds of rejoicing are empty and heartless; your denunciation of tyrants, brass-fronted impudence; your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your sermons and thanksgivings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are, to Him, mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy-a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages.
There is not a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States at this very hour.”
― Frederick Douglass

“It is a self-deception of philosophers and moralists to imagine that they escape decadence by opposing it. That is beyond their will; and, however little they acknowledge it, one later discovers that they were among the most powerful promoters of decadence.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

Yet as a nation, we collectively have righteous power to correct imbalance:

“To me, the conclusion that the public has the ultimate responsibility for the behavior of even the biggest businesses is empowering and hopeful, rather than disappointing. My conclusion is not a moralistic one about who is right or wrong, admirable or selfish, a good guy or a bad guy. My conclusion is instead a prediction, based on what I have seen happening in the past. Businesses have changed when the public came to expect and require different behavior, to reward businesses for behavior that the public wanted, and to make things difficult for businesses practicing behaviors that the public didn’t want. I predict that in the future, just as in the past, changes in public attitudes will be essential for changes in businesses’ environmental practices.”
― Jared Diamond, Collapse

The powerful may be less powerful in the end for they are inhibited by their station:

“The higher a man stands on the social ladder, the greater the number of people he is connected with, the more power he has over other people, the more obvious is the predestination and inevitability of his every action.”
― Leo Tolstoy

Yet the masses are not so constrained:

“You have a power that most high noblemen envy. It is a power that, had you been born an aristocrat, would have made you one of the most deadly and influential people in all of the final empire…’But, you weren’t born an aristocrat. You’re not noble. You don’t have to play by their rules–and that makes you even more powerful.”
― Brandon Sanderson

“You can tell people of the need to struggle, but when the powerless start to see that they really can make a difference, nothing can quench the fire.”
― Leymah Gbowee

Ultimately the rule of law is no defense against power:

“Constitutions become the ultimate tyranny,” Paul said. “They’re organized power on such a scale as to be overwhelming. The constitution is social power mobilized and it has no conscience. It can crush the highest and the lowest, removing all dignity and individuality. It has an unstable balance point and no limitations.”
― Frank Herbert

Yet divine law if it exists, is a subtle, everlasting defense:

“God has chosen to save the world through the cross, through the shameful and
powerless death of the crucified Messiah. If that shocking event is the
revelation of the deepest truth about the character of God, then our whole way
of seeing the world is turned upside down… all values are transformed… God
refuses to play games of power and prestige on human terms.”
― Richard Hays

“The great question…What did Jesus actually bring, if not world peace, universal prosperity, and a better world? What has he brought?

The answer is very simple: God…. He has brought God, and now we know his face, now we can call upon him. Now we know the path that we human beings have to take in this world. Jesus has brought God and with God the truth about our origin and destiny: faith, hope and love. It is only because of our hardness of heart that we think this is too little. Yes indeed, God’s power works quietly in this world, but it is the true and the lasting power. Again and again, God’s cause seems to be in its death throes. Yet over and over again it proves to be the thing that truly endures and saves.”
― Pope Benedict XVI

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Divine Law Suggests Technology Cannot Obsolete Labor, Only Direct It

industry_hightechSome say that the age of capital has arrived and that technology has made the labor of the high school drop out obsolete. It is this argument then that supports the idea that uneducated laborers should be paid a wage that does not sustain life. Yet the vast majority of the world does not exceed this poorly educated standard of learning. Are we saying then that the majority of the world should not exist? The creation of computers, while making the world vastly more productive, has not yet made mankind extinct.

The ability of a country to lift its people through education determines its ability to compete on the economic frontier of the world. The fact that only 4% of Detroit’s eighth graders can pass basic knowledge tests in math is an indicator of the abysmal condition of America’s system of preparation for competition on that economic frontier.

Yet, whether or not we are adequately preparing our nation for the leading edge of national production, we still are producing more humans. These humans have value, a value that is economically determined by our ability to educationally prepare them, but that has value nonetheless.

America continues to replace human capital with machinery and computers to compete with other parts of the world that still uses human capital at a much lower price. America has seen fit to add $15 per hour equivalent through regulation and set a minimum wage of $7.25. With our artificial barrier of $22.25 in a world with a median income of less than a dollar, technology must prevail.

Yet those are artificial barriers we set for ourselves that drive labor decisions in America. Therefore, we are content to give on top of those barriers an additional equivalent of $13 per hour to every citizen that we keep sidelined and unemployed. It is our artificial barriers that attempt to create obsolescence. However, even if we removed the barriers and reformed our abhorrent educational system as we should, America would still have a segment of our population unable to rise to the levels of knowledge required to compete for those jobs that are left with our $22.25 barrier.

Are we then divinely just in letting American labor sit idle while millions provide similarly educated labor in other countries to supply us our goods?

There is strength in Biblical verses about work. Several contain the context that men must work to eat. For instance:

1. Thessalonians 3:10

“For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.”

Now if the Bible says if anyone is unwilling to work let him not eat, then if follows that if they are willing to work then they should eat. The laborer is not the owner of the work. The master of the work is the capitalist that has provided for the business owner.

1. Timothy 5:8 states:

“But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”

How could God allow the servant of a master’s work to become an unbeliever and deny his faith because he cannot provide for his relatives simply because the master of the work does not provide a living wage? If God commands a man to work and to provide from that work for his family less he be deemed and unbeliever condemned to Hell, then God must want for this man to earn a living through honest work.

Ephesians 4:28 says:

“Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”

Yet, we turn our backs on our failing schools, condemning millions to a life unprepared for honest work. We then turn them to the streets where high school drop outs and failed students cannot earn a living wage, and we force them into making a poor choice between public handouts and lives of crime.

The idea that a man can condemn another to work for wages beneath his ability to sustain life has been tread out through the ages and always ends in fallen governments and revolution. The Arab Spring happened because the world’s economic implosion brought food prices beyond the reach of North Africans. Just because men can lower wages below livability does not mean that God supports their power.

For the scripture of 1 Timothy 5:18 says,

“You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”

The Bible is replete with verses that support the concept of work equating to a living wage. It certainly does not state that the laborer will become wealthy from his toil. Yet, it does support the idea that man should be provided through his toil his needs so that he may come to God in solitude with good prayer.

If this is so, then our leaders are called to come together to determine how all can earn a living wage through a community’s toil.

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Divine Law Allows for Imperfect Institutions to Find Perfecting Solutions to Man’s Poverty

pb-111230-detroit-churches-da-01.photoblog900Assume divine law is real….Assume for just a moment that the purpose of Earth is as a vessel to allow man to find his way toward an infinite, pure life….If this were so, perhaps then it would be the task of man is to find his way through a jungle of worldly jeopardies toward choices that allowed a pathway toward this infinite life. That task might seem impossible if not for these innate carnal tools given at birth of greed, lust, and fear.

So we bubble our way through the maze and hope to find our way through at the end of 100 years of life. Yet, since it takes a lifetime of learning to find our way through that maze, it necessarily means that the vast majority of us have not yet found our way. We are an imperfect world struggling to make it through, and the billions of our world citizens are therefore imperfect in their governments and other institutions.

It is these imperfect institutions made of imperfect beings that must then look to create perfect solutions for the least of our citizens. If then drivers such as greed, lust, and fear are what will guide us for most of our lives until we have reached our final earthly terminal, then our institutions must be able to function with these drivers as well.

Capitalism is one such tool. It does not depend on the goodness of all men such as communism does. It depends on the greed of all men so that all will seek best personal solutions in a way to benefit everyone. My tools for Detroit depend on these same imperfect drivers. I say all must benefit from Detroit’s solution. The elite capitalist must be made better off by his choice to locate in Detroit and the illiterate, out of work citizen must be made better off as well.

Divine law applies to all human beings, not just those of Detroit. All in our world should have adequate food to eat, clean water to drink, a safe place to sleep, and the ability to provide for their families. The Western capitalist system has left many to suffer. The capitalist system that is rising in the East is not much better, and perhaps history will even judge it worse.

Divine law will by necessity then loosen the world from the imperfections of capitalism even as capitalism continues to provide the world a tool to progress in spite of mans imperfections. Just as capitalism by necessity in the 1970s was able to loose itself from the gold standard, it now needs to loose itself from the bondage of international banking that limits world progress to a chosen few nations. Capitalism can exist on the promises of people without the bondage of bankers, just as it now exists on the promise of people through bankers without the bondage of gold.

This will be the next step in the world’s travels toward divine law, yet it will not occur until the next crisis of necessity forces its hand.

However, this talk of divine law is simply a diversion from the task at hand, and only meant for those struggling to see why we must employ all of Detroit’s citizens. The solution to Detroit’s financial problems is employment. That will come when Detroit decides by necessity that jobs are more important than politics. The solution will come when Michigan determines that jobs are more important than to allow artificial barriers to keep them from returning to the state. Roll up your sleeves and begin to knock those barriers down. Put your citizens back to work and bring your city and state back to prosperity.

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Divine Law Calls for Full Employment with Living Wages

man-praying-knees
Balance of moderation is what is required yet the world’s system of governance drives us toward imbalance. It seems that moderation is not a natural state of governance, that man drifts toward either extreme. On the one hand, we have state sponsored religion that strives for moral imperatives yet enforces them through state regulation. On the other, we have separation of church and state that suggests natural law is a moral substitute for divine law, and yet natural law in the absence of divinity degenerates to survival of the fittest. It is toward one of these extremes or the other that mankind seems to find itself in tortured equilibrium.

Neither extreme provides the moderation necessary for a nation to prosper. In progressing, or regressing as it were, from one extreme to the other, a nation reaches its peak and then degrades over time into obscurity. Finding that optimum balance in the middle is what modern nations strive for but seldom obtain.

In America’s beginnings, a founding group of men, many of whom were Deists, sought to find a moderately balanced starting point that separated church and state but that maintained religiously derived principles in its laws. Yet these same religiously derived laws retained bigoted principles of slavery that were incorporated in the nation’s founding documents. Those principles had been hardened into centuries of state sponsored religious doctrine.

Over two hundred years, principles of separation of Church and State have progressed in America’s doctrine and laws, yet in so doing, they have also allowed the progression of the natural law of survival of the fittest, for they go hand in hand.Natural law does not allow for living wages for all men. Natural law does not allow for the raising up of community. If balance to a nation is to be restored, divine principles might be required, even while maintaining separation of the state.

The divine principle that must be adhered to is that of man’s ability to commune with God. If that were a true principle, then no law could be created that caused a loss of communion. If laws then were created that caused man not to have a living wage, that caused strife in his ability to provide the basic necessities of life sustenance, that in turn distract his communion, then these laws would necessarily be put down. Communion then is the driver for rights of man, and a living wage becomes man’s right. With this right, full employment changes from a fluffy goal not adhered to by our politicians, to a high priority of the nation. This is as it should be.

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