Posts Tagged ‘Unalienable Rights’

“Nature’s God”

May 15, 2017

short url to this post: http://wp.me/pGfx1-Aj

by Dahni
© 2017, all rights reserved

A friend of mine recently said, “I can’t seem to find any reference to Nature’s God prior to the time of Thomas Jefferson. I’m trying to figure out exactly what he meant by that term and where he picked up the concept.”

The words, “the Laws of Nature” and “Nature’s God,” appear in our founding document, The Declaration of Independence, in 1776.

“When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

Opening of: The Declaration of Independence, 1776, 1st paragraph

The idea that the United States of America is a, “Christian Nation,” has been argued since likely, our beginning in the years which led up to 1776 and ever since. You might be surprised as to its true origins?

We know from basic U.S. history that Thomas Jefferson (one of the youngest, if not the youngest earliest representatives to the 1776 body, The Continental Congress and other patriots), was tasked with the writing of, The Declaration of Independence. It was so because of his skill with language. But even so, it may be understood that there was one writer, but many authors. This is clearly seen in the opening of the second paragraph of ‘The Declaration,’ We hold these truths…”

Let us examine the writer, Thomas Jefferson.

Thomas Jefferson was basically a deist, although the term in his day had negative connotations such as being heretical or being an atheist. As revolutionary as it was to revolt against their mother country, their king ordained by supposed divine right, the greatest standing military and naval force of the times, words such as “the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and nature’s God entitle them,” were just as revolutionary!

Thomas Jefferson lived during the ‘Age of Enlightenment’ 1715-1789. In France, the central doctrines of the French worded, les Lumières (the lights), were individual liberty and religious tolerance in opposition to an absolute monarchy and the fixed dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church or of any one church, for that matter. The Age of Enlightenment was marked by an emphasis on the scientific method and reductionism along with increased questioning of religious orthodoxy—an attitude captured by the Latin words, Sapere aude, “Dare to know.”

Reductionism is the theory of reducing complex data down to its basic elements to understand and apply that knowledge. An example of reductionism may be better understood from the Bible?

“Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:”

I Corinthians 10:32 KJV

Whereas we may view the complexities of humanity with its many races and variations, according to what we just read, the God of the Bible reduces this complex data down to there being just 3— Jew, Gentile or the Church of God (which is made up of both Jew and Gentile).

Jefferson also lived during the ‘Age of Reason.’ It follows in the tradition of eighteenth-century British deism, and challenges institutionalized religion and the legitimacy of the Bible. It was published in three parts in 1794, 1795, and 1807. Jefferson died in 1826, but these two ages” shaped his thinking and that of our other founders and their manner of life. When Jefferson wrote our founding document, The Declaration of Independence, agreed to by all the signers of all 13 colonies, he and our founders, believed in a creator whom created all equal and endowed them with certain unalienable rights. Some of the signers were Christian and some held other beliefs. Jefferson’s belief in God the creator was not revelatory. He did not believe in miracles. He believed in the value of the moral code of Jesus, but not necessarily that he was God’s Messiah. God, Jefferson believed, was known or could be known by design in the laws of life, hence, “the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.” He believed in ethics and morals and science and reason and he believed this is how the creator was made known. This was believed possible by exercising the Latin term, Sapere aude, “Dare to know.”

“Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear.”

Thomas Jefferson

It was believed that this was not only the right of all to know, but the responsibility of all, in order to realize and live them – “We hold these truths.” But where did such ideas come from?

“The ideas that inspired them [our original founders] were neither British nor Christian, but largely ancient, pagan, and continental:”

excerpt from a description of: ‘Nature’s God,’ The Heretical Origins of the American Republic, by Matthew Stuart © 2014

Now this is interesting and it may or may not have been the origin of Jefferson’s belief and even it were the belief of every other signer of ‘The Declaration,’ it is, Christian, in that it is written in the Bible and specifically, in the New Testament and even more specific, in the first doctrinal (how to believe rightly) epistle, to the Church, the Book of Romans.

Please note: All scripture references from the Bible herein are from, The King James Version, KJV.

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
“Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
“For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

Romans 1:18-20 KJV

Without controversy, those three verses basically describe, “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God.” Now lets look at more of this chapter to see in contrast to “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God,” what the God of the Bible (His revelation of Himself) has to say.

1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel
[good news] of God,
2 (Which he [God] had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)
3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
5 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:
6 Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:
7 To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith [Greek pistis believing] is spoken of throughout the whole world.
13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. [Greek pistis believing, a verb which connotes action or if you will, the exercise of the right to, the Latin term, Sapere aude, “Dare to know.”].”
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed [shown] it unto them.”
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature [created thing] more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Romans 1:1-8, 13-25 KJV

Whether you or I believe as did Jefferson or in any of the beliefs of our original founders is not what is most important. For one thing, they believed that equality was created in all and rights were given to all by the creator, the “Laws of Nature” and “Nature’s God.” There is no contradiction if you believe God is made known by nature or revealed by His Word, the Bible, Himself the Word or His namesake and only begotten son, Jesus Christ the Word. These all agree. They conciliate in The Declaration of Independence. It is concluded in, The Declaration of Independence. There is no contradiction that our Republic is indeed, based on Judeo-Christian principles. Even if one is an atheist, and believes in the theory of evolution (the big bang theory), there is no contradiction because, equality and rights are a gift of this life force, “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God, a “creator,” a design and etc. otherwise, there is no equality and no rights, only inequality and privileges. Look at the final sentence in The Declaration.

“And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

Except from: The Declaration of Independence, 1776, last sentence

This ‘Declaration’ of equality and rights from “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God,” which relies on “Divine Providence,” the creator, is equal to and…

…as The Declaration is Declaratory of “Nature’s God,” so are the heavens

“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth [shows] his handywork.”

Psalm 19:1 KJV

Thomas Jefferson, our founders and our founding documents were not anti-God or atheists. All were anti-divine right and anti-religion. From since the fall of Adam and Eve in the first book of the Bible, Genesis, our species have tried to dominate by force of arms or religious dogma. They have tried to un-separate or conciliate (bring together), Church and State. Kings, Queens, emperors and etc. from ancient times, were thought of as gods or as God’s representatives on earth. This is called, “divine right” and may be thought of by expressing— rule from the throne. The church and specifically, the Roman Catholic Church, uses a Latin phrase, ex cathedra “from the seat of authority” or simply, “from the chair.” I like to think of that as, from the toilet because, it is just crap. 🙂

There is one problem with this concept, Biblically.

”When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?  And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter [Greek petros, a small grain-like stone that can be blown about, with every wind of doctrine], and upon this rock [Greek petra, a large unmovable rock or stone] I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

Matthew 16:13-20 KJV

In English, what this verse seems to say is that Jesus Christ would build his church upon Peter. This is the verse used to promote and substantiate the concept of apostolic succession. Please note that this verse says absolutely nothing about apostolic succession. But if you look in the Greek translation from which the King James Version came, just knowing and understanding the definition of two Greek words, this verse says something entirely different. The name Peter (petros in Greek), is very similar to his personality. One moment he was ready to die with Jesus and the next you can’t find Peter (a little grain of sand), anywhere. Jesus Christ used the word “rock” which again, is the Greek word petra, an unmovable stone. Jesus Christ simply said [my paraphrasing], Hey, look Peter, you are like a tiny grain of sand. You blow hot and cold and blow about at the whim of the wind. But on this rock (Jesus pointed to himself), I (Jesus Christ), will build my church!

So much for certain ones dominating over the church or of apostolic succession. 🙂

Throne or chair, take your pick or as it was or is, as to whomever in actuality, is in control of the rest of the population. These beliefs were rejected by Thomas Jefferson and our original founders and in our original documents.

From the throne of a king, queen, prince, princess and etc. or from the chair of a Pope or head of some other religious order, both have one thing in common, genealogy or privilege. Whether by birth or royal blood line, this “divine right” is equal to the pedigree or some spiritual association like apostolic succession. This belief was that from the line of the Apostle Peter of the Bible, all true authority of God on earth, being infallible, is thought to be the legitimate authority over all others. Thomas Jefferson, our original founders and our original documents rejected these ideas!

In their day and time, Thomas Jefferson, our original founders and our original documents were revolutionary because, they rejected the “divine right” of the king, the rule from the throne and the rule of the church (any church), “from the chair,” or the toilet. This established the concept of separation of Church and State, but certainly not, the separation of God and State. This is clearly seen in the words, “The Laws of Nature” and “Nature’s God.” As The Declaration Declares, “All men [a plural noun inclusive of all men, women and children], “are created equal…” “…that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Any religion that is contrary to these universal truths would be unequal and would be based on privileges, not rights, and the divine right of royalty or spiritual authority, based on some pedigree of even ANY moral and ethical church, from dominating the affairs of our republic. However, this would not prevent any of the “Free and Independent States,” by “consent of the governed,” of that state, from having a state religion. But among the other states, their state religion would not/could not prevent the rights of any other state or any other individual. But the United States, interdependent, would not/could not have either a dominating governing force (see checks and balances in the Constitution of the United States), or religious force.

“The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God,” clearly declares that we are all created equal and are all endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights. And though it does not declare whom this God is, whether by what is known from the study of these universal laws (Sapere aude “dare to know”), or what is revealed, it does not prevent God, a creator from revealing its self (male or female) in its manner and provides for, the Freedom of religion which includes, the truth! In other words, religious freedom or religious liberty, allows anyone to worship or not, as they deem appropriate, as long as, their liberty and their rights, do not prevent those of any others.

In 2015, Chris Cuomo, a lawyer, son of Mario Cuomo (former NY governor a Democrat candidate for president), brother to Andrew Cuomo, the current governor of the state of New York, is a paid contributor and host at CNN. He interviewed the then Alabama Chief Supreme Court judge, his honor, Roy Moore. The following picture is a quote from that interview.

Our rights do not come from God?

Cuomo is lecturing a Supreme Court judge, the Chief Justice at the time, of the State of Alabama and addresses him with an air of respect in calling him, “your honor.” But the insulted Chief Justice, respectfully, did not agree with Cuomo. In contrast and in direct contradiction to Cuomo, this is what the writer of The Declaration, Thomas Jefferson said,

Our Equality and Our Rights come from God!

Does it matter if Jefferson was a deist, a Jew or a Christian? No it does not. Does it matter if any of our founders were deist, Jewish or Christian? No it does not. Does it matter if any were Jew, Gentile or Church of God? No it does not. Does it matter if our original founding documents were based on ancient, pagan, continental, desist, Jewish or Christian principles? No it does not. “Nature’s God,” in concept or in reality is not contradictory, but is conciliatory. Our equality and our rights do not come from man, mankind, humanity, collective agreement or compromise, but from, “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God,” from the creator, however you freely choose to believe in one. What really matters is not what we may or may not believe, but that “Nature’s God” gifted us with equality and rights!

“Nature’s God” allows for the free choice, or religious freedom or religious liberty, to believe as one sees fit, provided that it is ethical, moral, is equal to all and does not prevent the rights of all, of every individual!

There are two compound words that are now, much easier to understand, inspiration and enthusiasm. Inspiration is made up of in + spirit or in spirit action. Enthusiasm is made of the Greek preposition en meaning, totally within as opposed to, from without and the Greek word theo, which is, God. Combined, its meaning is, in totality or wholly within God, the origin or power of God. “The Laws of Nature and Nature’s God,” are equal to a “creator,” all people being “created equal,” and the “endowment” “of certain unalienable rights.” Things equal to the same thing, are equal to each other!

In conclusion, “Nature’s God” are words written in our original declaratory founding document, The Declaration of Independence. Though equality and individual rights are inclusive or universal, they are written and authored by Free and Independent States that have the right to govern their own affairs, as does any other Free and Independent State or country. We have the right to allow in or remove anyone or anything which is contrary to universal rights and the privileges of citizenship we hold together, as Free and Independent States! And we also, have the responsibility of both now and in the future, to prevent anyone or anything from dominating our republic and any church from dominating our United States, religious liberty.

If these things were not so, there would be only inequality and privileges; no equality and no rights! “Nature’s God” is, the origin of equality and of our rights. And this equality and these rights did not come by humanity, but by the creator and these rights can therefore, not be bought, sold, bartered, traded, surrendered or taken by force from anyone, by anyone or anything, under any circumstances! The Constitution of the United States is the second, but equal part to our republic. Whereas The Declaration declares the origin of our equality and our rights, the Constitution is, for the defense and protection of this equality and these universal rights and our “collective agreement and compromise,” as to our privileges as citizens and how this republic is to be served— of the people, by the people,  for the people and to the people! And this is the responsibility of every one of us, to protect and defend against all enemies, foreign or domestic!

For more information about the beliefs and times of Thomas Jefferson see:

http://www.constitutionaleducation.org/index.php?page=Jefferson&loc=fathers

 

1 of WE,

 

Advertisements

Unalienable or Inalienable

April 19, 2017

short url to this post: http://wp.me/pGfx1-A4

by Dahni

© 2017, all rights reserved

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.” 

The Declaration of Independence, July 4th, 1776, 2nd paragraph

 

Does it matter if your rights are unalienable, inalienable or alienable? Many have no idea what these words truly mean in context of what was written in the Declaration of Independence. Look at the article from the following link.

https://fee.org/articles/why-it-matters-that-some-rights-are-inalienable/

Although the link above is an interesting read (and I did read it word for word), it fails to use the word as written, in the familiar clause of the Declaration of Independence. That word is, “unalienable” and not “inalienable” as used in the title of the afore mentioned and linked article. It fails to define the word “unalienable” and like our rights, it cannot be separated from the source from which they are derived which is, “their [our] creator,’ God. And finally, the article fails in that it does not show original intent of our founders that authored it (WE the People are the authors), and written by, Thomas Jefferson, one among us, WE the People.

Our founders, many of which were from England and influenced by the work of John Locke, English jurisprudence (English Law) and were familiar with the words “inalienable” and “alienable” as they relate to property rights, to rights of property. But this was not, absolutely not, what their intentions were, in the Declaration of Independence or how the words were used, in the context of this document. “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness,” are certainly not referring to mere property rights.

Very, very simply, the words “unalienable” or “inalienable,” which as defined in most any dictionary are, exactly the same. Both can be understood by the root word, “alien.” Basically, something or someone that is “alien” or is, an “alien” is, foreign or just not from here. What separates us from any other foreigner or alien? These “truths” were written down, put into and left, in our founding documents. It is a record. It was recorded. It is a recording and like a sound recording, is considered more permanent than having to rely on the fragility of memory which is prone to leave out, put in or change things over time. Let me say that again in another way. The only thing that makes us UN-aliens any different from any other alien outside of this country is that we put our rights into writing. They are the laws of our republic. We are all aliens, but our rights are unalienable and are given by “their [our] creator,” God. If they are given by people, they are not rights, but privileges and could be bought, sold, given away or forcibly taken. They would be then, alienable privileges, but they are not. One cannot separate another from their unalienable rights, any more than they can separate the source of Him, “their [our] creator,” God that gave them, gives them freely to all, for all are, “created equal!”

Having written those things, I will leave a link below, which digs into the depth of these two words, “unalienable” and “inalienable.” Even though they are defined the same in a dictionary today, were both understood as the same in the 18th century and there were even drafts of the Declaration of Independence that used the word “inalienable,” before the final document which used, “unalienable,” most courts, corporations, and even state constitutions, only recognize inalienable rights. According to their interpretation, those rights are separate from unalienable rights and can be transferred with your permission or without it if, the court, corporation, and/or state decides it so. This is a perversion, an interpretation, a corruption; a usurpation of our unalienable rights, given freely by “their [our] creator,” God, for those rights cannot be bought, sold, bartered, transferred or taken away, with or without our permission! Why not? Because we are all aliens or foreigners in a strange land. We are pilgrims. We are just passing through. We and our unalienable rights will all one day, return to the source that gave them, “their [our] creator,” God.

Understanding of these things is of paramount importance! In addition to separating the words “unalienable” and “inalienable,” though they are defined as the same, there are those which believe the Declaration of Independence, has no place in our government nor standing, in any court of Law. There are those which believe that the preamble to our Constitution, has no place or standing, in any court of law.

The We that hold “these truths” are, the same WE behind, “We the People.”

The “We” that hold “these truths” are, the same WE behind, “We the People.” The Declaration of Independence cannot be separated from, The Constitution of the United States of America. And the preamble to the same, cannot be separated from the document including, the ‘Bill of Rights.’

To separate unalienable from inalienable, seeks to separate rights from “their [our] creator,’ God, whom gave them, from  “their [our] creator,’ God, God, being just a figure of speech, a legal fiction when in fact, it is humans (governments) that give us those rights (privileges) and can therefore, take them away? As no one can separate the Preamble from the Constitution from or the Bill of Rights, no one can separate the Constitution (a more perfect union) from, the Bill of Rights, all which are given limited power by consent of the people, to protect the rights of the People. And no one can separate the Constitution (the protector of these rights) from the Declaration of Independence (the declarer of those rights and from whence those rights have come (“their [our] creator,” God.

There are those that believe we are a democracy (rule by majority) as opposed to a republic (rule by law, a representative government). There are those that believe the electoral college should be eliminated and presidential elections should be decided by popular vote. Popular vote is, democracy, rule by majority. This is not the same thing as a republic, the rule by law, a representative government.

Nothing could be more clear in understanding the failures of democracy and the intent of the republic, than a map of the United States showing by county and by colors red or blue from the national election, November 8th, 2016. The popular vote (majority of votes) is in blue and the electoral college votes, in red.

The popular (majority) vote is in blue and the electoral college votes are in red

 

Votes from the areas in blue above show both where the majority of the votes were received and are where the majority of the people live in the USA. But it is obvious that not everyone lives in the blue areas. To control the government in this manner, all one needs to do is to receive the majority of the votes from where the majority of the people live. Now I ask you, which color (blue or red) truly is more representative of the United States? If you ca see red, then this is indicative of a republic, a representative government in action and our founders original intent. If you still desire the blue, a majority, a democracy, this was not our founders intent and you should seek to legally amend our Constitution.

There are those which believe as the times have changed, even our Constitution is subject to change. The Constitution may be amended, but it cannot be changed. We the people have the right to:

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

Excerpt from: The Declaration of Independence, July 4th, 1776.

Separating unalienable and inalienable is to separate rights of all to the priviledges of the few. Separating the Bill of Rights from the Constitution, the Constitution from the Preamble, The Constitution from The Declaration of Independence, rights from “the [our] creator,” God, reduces all to a democracy instead of a republic and robs every man woman and child from their equal rights that among these are, “Life Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” These are all very dangerous ideas. It is only WE the People which consent to those powers which government may by only specified limits, execute on our behalf. We the People have those rights because, WE the People are all and each, equally endowed by “their [our] creator,” God, whom gave us these rights! These rights which cannot be bought, sold, bartered, transferred or taken by force, with or without our permission! Government is neither an individual or a person (corporation), it is just a servant, our servant, the servant of WE the People.  Government’s sole function is, to protect and defend our unalienable rights from all enemies, foreign (alien) or domestic (from within us).

I offer the following link to a PDF file for your consideration. It is an except from my book of 2012, ‘RESET “An UN-alien’s Guide to Resetting Our Republic”

 

I of WE,

 

 

 

 

 

“UN-alien” or “Inalienable”

 

 

Pre-Civil War Ignorance

March 23, 2010

by Dahni

© Copyright 3/23/10

all rights reserved

HOW can WE the People regain control of OUR right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?” WE have delved into what won’t work in order to find what will work.

The List (simplified)

8.   Establish a new service to restore OUR rights to “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Today: Pre-Civil War Ignorance

Last time WE looked at the hypothetical possibility of what life would look like today, if the Southern states were allowed to secede from the Union in 1860-1861.  The previous post ended where this one begins and it begins with slavery. Despite the many experts and theories as to the cause or causes of the Civil War, I do not believe slavery was the issue. Does this surprise anyone? Slavery was not an issue! It was made an issue, by both the North and South!

WE will now look at some history of slavery in what is now called, the United States of America. This understanding is important as it relates to “legal fiction,” the corrupt, corrupting and corruptible “system” and the “mindset’ WE have been endeavoring to discover and remove from OUR republic.

This “mindset” is related to the title of this post, “Pre-Civil War Ignorance.” Let us now look at “mindset” and its origins in this country, as it pertains to slavery.

Everything has an origin or a beginning. The words ‘gene,’ ‘genetics,’ ‘genealogy,’ and the first book of the Jewish and Christian Bible, ‘Genesis,’ all share the same root word. From the Greek word [genus], its definition is origin, beginning, race, kind etc.

Before actions are taken, they are preceded (originate, begin) by thoughts. Through time, a ‘mindset’ develops. This thinking and the corresponding actions get passed on from generation to generation. An evolving or otherwise civil society, when faced with something that is not understood, will often seek to justify or rationalize its position even through logical discourse. But in logic, no matter how logical the premise, if the premise is wrong, the conclusion will be wrong.

So without knowledge, WE are ignorant. Ignorance is just the state of being without knowledge or understanding.

Stupidity is to know and understand, but refusing to change.

As long as people have been a species upon this planet, slavery in some form or another has existed. Every continent, country and culture has some history of slavery in their societies. It has not always been an issue of race or the color of skin. Any person or people could have been under the subjugation, involuntarily servitude, or considered as the property of others. Some of those under whatever form or names you want to call slavery were enslaved, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually and all of the above. Some were treated kindly and some cruelly. But slavery kind or cruel is, still slavery!

Imagine living in a little village thousands of years ago. It makes no difference the color of your skin or your race, but everyone in you village are all the same color or race. One day, for the very first time in your life, you meet someone that looks similar, but has a different color of skin, culture and even language. What would you think?  The world has a history of making up stuff. Instead of finding the answers to OUR differences by conversing with the person and instead of looking at OUR similarities, the differences become the focus. Maybe WE ask others instead of the person WE meet about these differences. Maybe they don’t know and no one wants to look foolish, so things often get made up, fictionalized and even vilified. What WE do not understand, WE often fear. WE often defer to others that seem to be wiser or have some connection to the ‘divine ear.’ These wise and ‘spiritual’ people are, themselves, people too. And if they don’t know, they make up stuff too. So here WE see clear examples of ignorance and how it is often passed from one generation to the next. Religion is often the source from which this ignorance begins and continues.

Slavery as it came to this country must have had some beginning. To the best of my understanding, slavery as it evolved in America, started with the Roman Catholic Church.

In 1441, Portuguese captains Antão Gonçalves and Nuno Tristão captured 12 Africans in Cabo Branco (modern Mauritania) and took them to Portugal as slaves. This no doubt continued so that around 10 years later, the Roman Catholic church was the dominate religion of the area and addressed slavery officially.

June 18, 1452, Pope Nicholas V issues ‘Dum Diversas’, a bull authorizing the Portuguese to reduce any non-Christians to the status of slaves.

“We grant you [Kings of Spain and Portugal] by these present documents, with our Apostolic Authority, full and free permission to invade, search out, capture, and subjugate the Saracens and pagans and any other unbelievers and enemies of Christ wherever they may be, as well as their kingdoms, duchies, counties, principalities, and other property […] and to reduce their persons into perpetual slavery.”

Excerpt from: ‘Dum Diversas’ by Pope Nicholas V

Note: A papal bull is a letter or announcement from the Pope to the Catholic world. It is so named, because a lead bulla or seal was attached to the Pope’s edict by a cord, thus authenticating it was from the Pope.

January 8, 1454, Pope Nicholas V issues ‘Romanus Pontifex’, a bull granting the Portuguese a perpetual monopoly in trade with Africa. Nevertheless, Spanish traders brought slaves from Africa to Spain. By the time Christopher Columbus sailed the blue in 1492, slavery was already imbedded in his country of Spain.

Natives of various countries were enslaved by the Conquistadors (from Spanish and Portuguese languages meaning “Conqueror”); were taken as slaves from one place and put or sold as slaves in other places.

By the 1700’s, African slaves was the preferred choice for the Colonies.

Note: The reason African slaves were the “preferred choice,” was that as a people, they were found to be more adaptable to conditions and training (discipline); could work harder and longer than Native Americans, or slaves from South America, Central America and the Caribbean. This is just one fact that should shut the door to the argument that the African slave was an inferior race.

George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were known to have slaves. Although there is no evidence to support that they were cruel to their slaves, slavery is still slavery. Perhaps they thought it was their Christian, civic, or human duty to help those inferior? The ‘mindset’ of slavery nonetheless, prevailed in the minds and the culture of the colonies and our founding fathers.

When George Washington was 16 years old, he had copied by hand, ‘110 Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation.’ These rules were based on a set of rules composed by French Jesuits in 1595. The first English translation, appeared in 1640, and is ascribed to Francis Hawkins, the twelve-year-old son of a doctor.

These many rules today may seem fussy and silly, but courtesy, manners, decency and good behavior were believed to be an absolute necessity, if one desired to be a true civic minded person; a gentleman or a gentlewoman of the 1700’s.

Thomas Jefferson was by the standards of the 1700’s, a highly educated man. He lived in or near Williamsburg, VA as a young man and was tutored and mentored by many of the finest minds of his day. Through his association with George Wythe, young Jefferson was afforded many opportunities and was introduced to the Governor and became a frequent visitor to the Governor’s mansion, in what we now call, Colonial Williamsburg.

George Wythe was the first signer from Virginia whose name appears on the Declaration of Independence. He was also a framer of the Constitution and instrumental in the design of the seal for the state of Virginia.

Jefferson wrote of George Wythe the following.

“No man ever left behind him a character more venerated than George Wythe,” Thomas Jefferson wrote. “His virtue was of the purest tint; his integrity inflexible, and his justice exact; of warm patriotism, and, devoted as he was to liberty, and the natural and equal rights of man, he might truly be called the Cato* of his country.”

*Cato – Marcus Porcius Cato Uticensis (95 BC, Rome – April 46 BC, Utica), commonly known as Cato the Younger (Cato Minor) to distinguish him from his great-grandfather (Cato the Elder), was a politician and statesman in the late Roman Republic, and a follower of the Stoic philosophy. He is remembered for his legendary stubbornness and tenacity (especially in his lengthy conflict with Gaius Julius Caesar), as well as his immunity to bribes, his moral integrity, and his famous distaste for the ubiquitous corruption of the period.

Wythe lived a long and prosperous life and was well respected. He was the first Law Professor of the College of William & Mary. He even boarded many students and treated them as his own children. He was long opposed to slavery and freed his own, which included one that chose to stay with him for the rest of Wythe’s life. One of Wythe’s heirs had gambling debts and forged checks of his uncle to pay them. To avoid detection and inherit his uncle’s estate, he is believed to have murdered George Wythe. The evidence was circumstantial and there was no conviction. The only possible witness was the black woman, the once former slave that chose to stay with him. But no black person was allowed to testify against a white person in court.

This is just one example of the consequences of ignorance, which ironically allowed a guilty person to go free, because of the ‘mindset’ of slavery.

But of books and learning and influence, there can be no doubt of the education of Thomas Jefferson. Even his work in the Declaration of Independence was inspired by the Magna Carta and clear influences from John Locke.

John Locke (1632 –1704) was widely known as the Father of Liberalism. He was an English philosopher and physician and regarded as one of the most influential thinkers of the times. In London in 1689, he published, ‘Two Treatises of Government,’ which arguably offers a justification for slavery.

Many Europeans came to America for religious freedom. But slavery was a form of persecution which, in the eyes of colonial America, had to be justified. So the black slave was viewed as being inferior, subhuman, and fated for servitude. The early Christian churches did not consider eliminating slavery until much later in the century. In 1693, Cotton Mather, a famous theologian from Boston, in his ‘Rules for the Society of the Negroes’ wrote,

“Negroes were enslaved because they had sinned against God.”

Later, Mather included a heavenly plan for the slaves in writing,

“God would prepare a mansion in Heaven.”

In the Colonial religious mind, the plight of the slave was servitude on earth and freedom was only possible in heaven.

King George on Dec. 10, 1770, issued an instruction, under his own hand, commanding the governor of Virginia,

“…upon pain of the highest displeasure, to assent to no law by which the importation of slaves should be in any respect prohibited or obstructed.”

In 1772, the Virginia Assembly earnestly discussed the question, “How shall we get rid of the great evil?” Jefferson, Henry, Lee, and other leading men anxiously desired to rid the colony of it. “The interest of the country,” it was said, “manifestly requires the total expulsion of them.”

Interestingly, the 1600’s and 1700’s is commonly referred to as part of the ‘Age of Enlightenment,’ with such forward thinkers as Descartes, Isaac Newton and John Locke among others. All of these influences had significant weight in the mind of Thomas Jefferson.

Despite the rules of conduct, manners, and civility as mentioned earlier about Washington and the learned environment of the Colonial mind and the mind of Jefferson, slavery was wrestled with as “the great evil,” but left uncorrected, continued to be justified.

From a capitalistic or economic view, slavery was justified as for the good of the people, and slaves were not people but property.

Some indentured servants were freed after their terms expired. Some of these became slave owners themselves. Some slaves were freed and some of them also, became slave owners. Some servants and slaves had their issues by others challenged in court and were successfully freed legally. Some of these cases were overturned by other courts. But in practice and policy, slavery continued, deepened and expanded in the consciousness of people as a whole.

From a religious or humanistic point of view, slavery was justified as the master’s duty to treat their property kindly and to bring them to independence in heaven or their contented place on earth, under the benevolent hand of the superior master race.

Looking back to the history of this ‘mindset,’ and comparing it with OUR most treasured documents, many people see exclusion and hypocrisy. What then is the profit of such beautiful and flowery words as, The Declaration of Independence?

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

From the Declaration of Independence, penned by Thomas Jefferson

Though slavery existed in the home of the writer and perhaps even in very room where these words were penned and “men” did not include slaves, women, or children on July 2 – 4, 1776, the truth of these words cannot be negated!

How can such language be justified when in practice, it was exclusive, contradictory or hypocritical? There is no justification as WE will see this definitively in the next post. But neither is there justification for discarding truth, because it is not practiced of, for, and by ALL of US, WE the People!

These words were authored by Enlightenment and penned by a collective civil and learned, Colonial ignorant mind or ‘mindset!’ It was and is wherever it may exist today, part of a corrupt, corrupting and corruptible “system.”

The concepts and practice of slavery was wrestled with during the formation of the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution, but was never settled; never corrected.

The whip or shackles are not the only means to enslave. The pen can be used to enslave. The law and the courts to enforce them can enslave. Even OUR Constitution if interpreted, has and in the present-day,  can, enslave. But it is ignorance; a “mindset;” a corrupt, corrupting and corruptible “system” which perpetuates the ignorance and enslaves the bodies, souls and spirits of people.

Though it is possible that some knew the truth during these times and practiced otherwise and therefore, were and may still today be hypocrites, slavery was not the cause of the Civil War, to occur almost 100 years hence. It was a “mindset” passed down from one generation to the next. It was part of a corrupt, corrupting and corruptible “system.”  In a single word, it is simply, ignorance.

Next Time: Civil War Ignorance

Check out the other blogs listed to the right. Come often. Bring others. Get involved. Do something. See:

How You Can Help


Ask not what your country can do for you

or what you can do for your country,

but what can WE the People do, for each other!”


1 of WE,

Dahni
An Amer-I-Can eagle

Next Post – Civil War Ignorance
Previous Post – What if – The U.S.A. & C.S.A.
Front Page – Welcome & Introduction