Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Hero or Villain

RPK posed an interesting question on two historically legendary Malays, in a post titled
SO, WAS JEBAT OR TUAH THE HERO?


Jebat - hero or villain?


Aiseh, I know some of you won't visit his blog so I have re-posted here my comments made at his mentioned post, with some judicious editing to (hopefully) improve on my original but hurried comments(s):

W
hoever wrote Hikayat Hang Tuah was brilliant in posing this question via the tragedy in the minds of readers, namely: Was Tuah the better person for his absolute blind obedience to his liege lord but with lamentable disregard for his loyalty to his blood/sworn "brother", or was it Jebat for his deep sense of fraternal love and loyalty but lack of traditional absolute allegiance to his liege lord?

It's the eternal agonising yin-yang story, worthy of serious study as per some of the Greek tragedies like the story of Jason & Medea, ...


Jason & Medea
(portrayed instead in Roman style)

... or that of ginormous confronting contradictions to be found in the Hindu epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata where so-called heroes like Rama in the former and Arjuna in the latter appeared to be treacherous underhanded villainous cads while supposedly arch villains like Ravana in the Ramayana and Karna in the Mahabharata appeared as chivalrous & righteous heroes.

And then there was the story of Ekalavya in the Mahabharata which troubled me as much as the story of Hang Tuah unjustly (or stupidly) killing his best friend and sworn brother-in-arms (and that by deceit too) on the say-so of the Sultan whose unjust persecution of Tuah had ironically been the very reason for Jebat rebelling against the tyrannical ruler.

Ekalavya idolised Drona, who was the ultimate sifu who had taught martial arts and magic to both the Pandava and their cousins the Kaurava, the two principal warring foes in the epic. But Drona refused to accept Ekalavya as his student because the latter was a low caste person. Yes, the Mahabharata reeks of despicable caste discrimination and class snobbery.

righteous (but stupid) Ekalavya giving his right thumb to a caste-conscious discriminatory and sinister Drona

Yet Ekalavya despite his low caste disadvantage practised diligently by himself with only Drona as his inspiration, becoming the best archer in the epic. But Drona was out to get him as he subsequently revealed his sinister upper caste discriminatory reason to his fave student Arjuna on why he had Ekalavya cut off the latter's own thumb:

"What would happen to society if the lower castes start learning the martial arts reserved for Kshatrias? I had to do this to preserve stability and social order. My goal is to make you the best archer in the world and remove all barriers towards that goal."

You may want to know why Ekalavya willing cut off his own thumb to give it to an asshole like Drona even if that act caused the silly bloke to lose his supreme skills in archery? Well, that's almost the same question you would ask on why Tuah killed his best mate Jebat for a tyrannical ruler.


We see the same troubling injustice in the Old Testament where modern biblical scholars have been re-evaluating the now-apparent villainous deeds of an unscrupulous murderous and adulterous King David against the equally now-apparent exemplary kingly conduct and performance of King Saul, a role reversal that certainly won't appeal to the "faithful".


In the above last phrase, to wit "... won't appeal to the faithful", I believe I might have stumbled upon the clue to the answer for our agonising question, in that the "faithfuls" would naturally think differently to the "discerning", a case of faith versus scholarship.

Mind, that question posed (not directly of course, or even not intended) by the author(s) of Hikayat Hang Tuah didn't arise in Malay minds (at least publicly) until Kassim Ahmad wrote his dissertations "Perwatakan Hang Tuah" in 1950. In that paper Kassim saw Jebat as the real hero for standing up to tyranny while he considered Tuah as a palace sycophant.

Kassim's character analysis of the two Malay warriors was radical thinking in a then Malay world where absolute loyalty to a Malay ruler was automatic, expected, and without question. Kassim provided the spark that gave rise to a virtually virgin perspective for Malay thinking about their allegiance to cruel repressive rulers, where Jebat himself was reputed to have said:

"Raja adil raja disembah, raja zalim raja disanggah."

... which means "A fair king is a king to salute, a cruel king is a king to rebel against"..

And regardless of how Kassim Ahmad may be regarded by Malay monarchists, he certainly has earned his redoubtable title as Malaysia's foremost intellectual.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

6% too much?

Yesterday TMI told us About 90% of the Malaysian workforce can't cope with the additional expenses incurred following the implementation of the goods and services tax (GST), according to a recent survey by career resources site Jobstreet.com.

too much?

If you spent RM 20 a day, then with GST at 6% you'd be paying RM21.60.

If your personal monthly expenditure was RM1000 a month, you will now require RM1060.

Does it make sense that "90% of the Malaysian workforce can't cope with the additional expenses"?

90% of Malaysians?

Don't just talk cock & ayam

The Star Online - Ismail: Enough chicken for Raya


GEORGE TOWN: There is ample supply of chicken for this Hari Raya, said Agriculture and Agro-based Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

The problem was poultry prices and he believed that some traders were taking advantage of the coming festive season to raise prices.

“It is possible that some traders are holding back supply because of the high demand,” he said.

Ismail added that it was without question that the cost of chicken feed, which is mostly imported maize, had increased due to the depreciation of the ringgit against the US dollar.

“We have to import because we cannot grow maize in Malaysia. Even the soybeans mixed in the feed are also imported.


Every f* pre-festival we hear the same message and accompanying excuses, in their various forms, as:

  • assurance of plentiful supply
  • unscrupulous traders taking advantage
  • threats of punitive actions against unscrupulous traders
  • yadda yadda yadda

... whether the feared shortage was on chicken, beef, mutton, eggs, flour, minyak, etc, and in this case, even santan.

For a minister to give assurances and excuses each and EVERY year, there has to be sheer bad management or something naughty and hanky panky going on on the supply side. And don't just blame those small traders but look more at the conglomerates. It's beginning to sound like Indians and Russians of yesteryears booking for their own car 10 years ahead.

I could tell you a story on how several years ago one wannabe-get-rich-instantaneously with "connections" had attempted by approved monopoly to corner the mandarin-orange market in the pre Chinese New Year market. One of the most effective boycott of goods then took place and the bloke was sent scurrying away with his tail between his hind quarters to his tuan's arms. But I won't now, wakakaka.

So will the minister/authority stop the blame & excuse game. The free market is about supply & demand, and the traders are more than happy to make profits in increased sales - that's the very essence of business.

Also anticipate festival requirements and ensure the shelves on the supermarkets, wet markets and kedai2 kampung are well stocked. Don't wait until a shortage crisis occur before importing.


Monday, June 29, 2015

PAS lost again in the medieval world

Malay Mail Online - PAS Syura Council to decide on DAP ties after Raya.


Caliph Ali ibn Abi Talib, bravest of Prophet Mohammad's generals

Above scene shows him leading the Prophet's army to victory at the Battle of Badr

A cousin and son-in-law of the Prophet he was said to Prophet Mohammad's rightful heir, and that the Prophet had anointed him as successor

He lost the caliphate to Abu Bakr in a swift bloodless coup d'etat while he was busy washing the Prophet's body for burial

He eventually and reluctantly accepted the appointment of 4th Caliph, but 5 years later was assassinated with a poison-coated sword while he was prostrating in a Fajr (dawn) prayer in the Great Mosque of Kufa.

His descendants and followers became Shia Muslims 


I wonder whether the Mail's headlines could be wrong; perhaps it should have read:

PAS Syura Council to decide on DAP ties after the Battle of Badr.

Wakakaka!

Did Abraham sacrifice Ishmael or Isaac?

On the right hand column of my blog I have listed my 10 top popular posts. Unfortunately the list somehow does not reflect the true stats, that of the posts most read. Currently DAP's comedy (or tragedy) of errors with Tunku Aziz is listed as the second most read post.


Hagar and Ishmael expelled because Sarah was jealous

It should be Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael which has many thousands of hits more than the one above.

I tried refreshing the blog including republishing Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael to make it appear correctly as No 2, but alas all my efforts failed to work

I'm going to take a leaf out of someone's book (or tactics) wakakaka and blame the Illuminati for suppressing its appearance as my 2nd most read post, because the post is uncomplimentary to Israel's so-called greatest 'hero', David, who in reality was an evil murderous treasonous and adulterous villain. Wakakaka.



Incidentally, on the topic of Ishmael and Isaac, Muslims believe that Abraham sacrificed Ishmael rather than Isaac to the Hebrew god. Though the Bible (Genesis 22:2) mentioned Isaac's name as follows:


And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. 
And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

... we need to remember the Bible was written by Judeans (Israelites), and not Muslims, so naturally the Judeans wanted the singular honour to be that of Isaac rather than the son of a slave in Abraham's household.


But note the words thine only son which in itself betrayed the truth, because Ishmael could be such an 'only son', whereas Isaac was yet to be born.

Once Isaac was born, Abraham had two sons where there was no more 'only son'.

The three Abraham religions do not dispute that Ishmael was born before Isaac, so Isaac could NOT be Abraham's 'only son'. But Ishmael was!

However the Judeo-Christian argument has been that Ishmael was the son of Hagar, a slave and a concubine who was not a free woman nor loved, and therefore could not be considered as Abraham's son, let alone 'only son'.

Thus, based on their flimsy partisan beliefs, they ruled out Ishmael as Abraham's 'only son'.

more importantly, note how the Judeans (from the line of Jacob and then Judah) marginalized Esau and his descendants in a ketuanan Israelite move, turning Edomites (descendants of Esau) from Jews into Arabs even though Esau and Jacob were twins of same parents, Isaac and Rebecca

In my post Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael I wrote that:

The Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) was written by various people but mainly by (though not all) Davidic supporters (obviously of the House of Judah). ‘Davidic’ supporters mean supporters of King David who was of the House of Judah, the most evil and treacherous man in the entire bible. [...]

David was also guilty of many other crimes including treasonably consorting with Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, against Israel.

In the way that the New Testament would not have been written if there was no Yesohua ben Yusuf, the Tanakh would not have thus been written if there was no David.

David's supporters wrote the Tanakh to exonerate his many crimes, but fortunately for posterity they weren't the only writers of the Tanakh, hence through the writings of those who weren't his supporters we catch glimpses of his evil as well as the treachery of his eponymous cheating ancestor, Israel, or as Jacob was known by, in the Old Testament.


With such biased authorship, needless to say, we would have Judean disparagement against Ishmael's mom (slave, concubine) and thus his pedigree within the Abraham household, that he wasn't Abraham's 'son' whereas Isaac was.

And if anyone wants to argue that Hagar was not a wife but only a concubine, please read Genesis 16:2-3 which states:

And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai. 
And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.

Indeed Hagar was the wife of Abraham (or at that time Abram while Sarah was then Sarai), and therefore Ishmael was the son of Abraham.

sorry Hagar baby, you have to go 'coz Sarah is green-eyed but worse is yet to come when her descendants would with invincible bias write of your son as not being my son contrary to Hebrew laws - it'd be their ketuanan bull

The Judeo-Christian tradition has been very biased, even ironically unto ignoring Hebraic laws. which tells us in Deuteronomy 21:15-17, that::


If a man has two wives, and he loves one but not the other, and both bear him sons but the firstborn is the son of the wife he does not love, when he wills his property to his sons, he must not give the rights of the firstborn to the son of the wife he loves in preference to his actual firstborn, the son of the wife he does not love.
He must acknowledge the son of his unloved wife as the firstborn by giving him a double share of all he has. That son is the first sign of his father’s strength. The right of the firstborn belongs to him.

So, hasn't 
Deuteronomy 21:15-17, a Hebrew law (not an Islamic one) been very very clear about the very legitimate status of Ishmael in the eyes of God as compared to Isaac's?

Now, it could well be that was how Abraham treated Ishmael, in accordance with Hebraic laws, but leave it to those prejudiced Israelite authors who wrote bout Isaac being Abraham's 'only son' some 1300 years after Abraham passed away, effectively to change Ishmael status and to confer upon Isaac the honour of being Abraham's sacrifice to their Hebrew god.

As I explained in
 Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael we have biblical commentators who would even say the idea of firstborn in the Bible (as per Deuteronomy 21:15-17) is often a position of pre-eminence, not necessarily meaning 'first out of the womb'. Wakakaka, what utter assshit.

see if you believe the above Christian crap where the descendants of Ishmael in trusting in good deeds would be in bondage to sin and rejected by (presumably the Christian) god

Thus by Judean 'creative' biblical composition, David enjoyed the position of firstborn, even though he was the youngest of Jesse's eight sons. By David's deliberately 'created' eminent birth, he was 'conferred' a status which then deemed him fit to be King of Israel - all conveniently written by David's men (not God, wakakaka).

But you know, regardless of whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was sacrificed by Abraham, the boy was killed.

There was no angel interceding at the very last minute to save the human sacrifice. Biblical scholars believe Abraham sembileh his son. And if the son was the 'only son' then it would have been Ishmael. But on the other hand it could well be Isaac.

Richard Elliott Friedman, a biblical scholar and the Ann & Jay Davis Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Georgia was one of at least two (Jewish) biblical authors who told us what had likely happened to Isaac or Ishmael. The other biblical scholar has been Tzemah Yoreh.

Putting aside for a moment the argument whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was the human sacrifice for a while, Friedman wrote his seven reasons why he believes Abraham killed his son at the sacrificial altar, as follows:

sorry son, all Hebrew first born automatically belongs to YHWH and He wants you now

1. In the original sources that come to make up the Torah, Gen 22 is attributed to an author from the Northern Kingdom, nicknamed “E” because he refers to God as Elohim, in contrast to “J” who refers to God as Jehovah, or Yahweh in contemporary use. 

In Gen 22:1-10, God is called Elohim, but suddenly an “angel of Yahweh” appears to save Isaac.

2. Gen 22:11-15, when Isaac is rescued by the Angel of Yahweh, also discusses how Abraham names the site after Yahweh in his honor.

3. In 22:16, “he” (is this the angel or Elohim?) praises Abraham because “you did this thing and didn't withhold your son.” 


What?!? This seems to describe a moment after which Isaac had been killed. It could refer, of course, to Abraham’s willingness, but it could also mean that he did it.

4. The story concludes with Abraham returning home, without any mention of Isaac.

Tzemah Yoreh confirmed the above oddity of 2 going out but only one returning.

5. In all of the other writings attributed to “E,” Isaac never again shows up. In fact, the traditions about Isaac even in the other texts are pretty meager compared to Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph.

6. Exodus 24, also from E, presents the story of a revelation at Mount Horeb which has multiple parallels with Gen 22, except that none are found in v. 11-15.

7. There are some midrashic stories that say that Isaac was sacrificed. I personally consider this to be pretty weak evidence since the editing of the Torah took place long before midrashim start showing up on this story, but it nevertheless represents the idea that at least for some, the idea of God actually asking that Abraham sacrifice Isaac is not out of the question.


Tzemah Yoreh added:

In verse 12, after staying Abraham’s knife-wielding hand in mid-air, the angel of God tells the father of monotheism, “I now know you fear God because you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.”

That phrase, “have not withheld your son,” “could indicate Abraham was merely willing to sacrifice his son, or that he actually did so.”

One hint that it may have been the latter is contained in the names for God used in the story. The Biblical text calls the God who instructs Abraham to sacrifice his son “Elohim”. Only when the “angel of God” leaps to Isaac’s rescue does God’s name suddenly change to the four-letter YHWH, a name Jews traditionally do not speak out loud.

Elohim commands the sacrifice; YHWH stops it. But it is once again Elohim who approves of Abraham for having “not withheld your son from me.”

These sorts of variations, rampant throughout the Bible, have led scholars to conclude that different names for God are used by different storylines and editors.

Indeed, Isaac is never again mentioned in an Elohim storyline. In fact, if you only read the parts of Isaac’s life that use the name Elohim, you don’t have to be a Bible scholar to see the story as one in which Isaac is killed in the sacrifice and disappears completely from the Biblical story.

Not that the YHWH portions make much of an effort to bring him back to life either. Indeed, Isaac seems to fade after the sacrifice, with his life story told in just one chapter, compared to more than a dozen chapters for both Abraham and Jacob.


So based on Friedman's and Yoreh's analyses, the author of J changed the biblical narration by inserting a J tale to show that an angel saved Isaac (or Ishmael) at the very last minute. The aim of the redaction was to reflect subsequent (1300 years later) Judean rejection of child sacrifice.

whoa there buddy, I'm the US "J" 7th Cavalry


Why is there a leitmotiv in the bible surrounding Abraham and Sarah, of the man and wife pretending to be brother and sister, of a Pharaoh or King taking (or attempting to take) the wife, of God then intervening to return the wife to the husband, and of the husband profiting greatly from the separation? The leitmotiv may be discerned in:
  • Abraham and the Pharaoh (Genesis 12:11-20)
  • Abraham and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 20:2-18) – Sarah was even older by then, around 90.
  • Isaac and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 26: 7-16) – we aren't too sure whether this was the same Abimelech for it was then more than 50 years later, but the King had a chief captain of the army named Phichol (Genesis 26:26) as was in the case of the earlier or Abraham’s Abimelech (Genesis 21:22).
If it was the same Abimelech, then it would suggest that Abraham and Isaac could well be the same person.

Read the last sentence above, which says it would suggest that Abraham and Isaac could well be the same person.

When Abraham sacrificed Isaac (or Ishmael) as a human offering to his Hebrew god, the above observed leitmotiv serves the story gnam gnam, in which Abraham (rather than a dead Isaac/Ishmael) was the father (and not grandfather) of Jacob. Thus the leitmotiv pointed to an Abraham experience rather than that of both Abraham and Isaac.

If we read the Old Testament we would discover that the Hebrew god liked human sacrifice, preferably burnt in a ceremony called olah, with the most notorious being Jephthat sacrificing his daughter to YHWH (Judges 11:29-40) and the most numerous being either all the first born of Egypt (Exodus 12:29) or those burnt by King Josiah - And he slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars, and burned men's bones upon them, and returned to Jerusalem - (2 Kings 23:20).

We return to the question: was it Ishmael or Isaac that Abraham sembileh? Think about it. 


A wee after-note digression here - Some scholars believe Saul's seven sons were similarly given as sacrificial offerings by their arch-foe King David (usurper of Saul's throne) to the Gibeonites (2 Samuel 21:1-14), though they admitted the biblical phraseology is less explicit but other indications, however, point in the same direction (of human sacrificial offerings).

But whichever, it was still essentially a David's evil act of ‘charm ch’ow tnooi keen’* which means chop/rid the grass, break/eliminate the roots. 

* (斩草不除根,春风吹又生 or in pinyin: zhǎn cǎo bù chú gēn, chūn fēng chuī yòu shēng)

The Chinese maxim literally translates into ‘cut the grass by severing its roots’, advising that to rid the grass forever, so that they’ll sprout no more; one must destroy the roots.

Thus, the saying as applicable to the biblical David's case means destroying the House of Saul totally and thoroughly by eliminating the Saulide family's potential for comeback, in other words, a genocidal intent in the elimination of all members of Saul's family to prevent future vendetta.

Why 'God' loved Isaac more than Ishmael

I refer to some parts of RPK’s Much ado about nothing (part 2), wakakaka those which states:

Abraham with (at that time) a futuristic mode of transportation, wakakaka

According to Genesis, Abraham had a wife named Sarah who was barren and could not give him any children. Sarah had an Egyptian slave named Hagar, so Sarah told Abraham to use Hagar as a surrogate mother since she (Sarah) could not give Abraham any children.

Hagar soon became pregnant and not long after that Sarah, too, became pregnant. So now both of them were pregnant. Hagar’s son was named Ishmael while Sarah’s son was named Isaac. But Ishmael was elder to Isaac since he was born first.

Sarah soon became jealous and told Abraham to get rid of Hagar and Hagar’s son, Ishmael. So Abraham dumped both of them in the desert and left them there. God, who called Himself, El Shaddai, then appeared and told Sarah that she will become the mother of all nations.

Now, there are two things to note here. First of all, God acknowledged Isaac (the younger brother) and not Ishmael (the elder brother) as the true successor and heir to Abraham.

and

Oh, by the way, Jews practice circumcision, an Egyptian practice at that time -- and Hagar was Egyptian while Sarah was not. Does this mean the Jews follow Hagar and not Sarah? 

Let me comment on the last part first, that of circumcision.

Gulp, I don't like the look of what appears to be a pair of pliers (on right)
what's that tool on the left?

RPK is correct that circumcision was then an Egyptian practice. The Egyptians were probably the first people to conduct circumcision, but then only among the royals and nobility.

Please note that when we refer to the biblical Egyptians we’re NOT talking about today’s Egyptian who are and have been mainly Arabs, and of course mainly Muslims since Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) introduced Islam to the Middle-Eastern world.

The biblical Egyptians were a different race, no, not even the people of Ptolemy’s and Cleopatra’s who came later and were mainly Macedonians and Greeks, remnants of Alexander’s army. The original Egyptians were a race of a much earlier era, and have since long gone; no one other than perhaps historians of ancient Egypt or Egyptologists know where they are now - perhaps in Padang and Negeri Sembilan wakakaka.

In a post earlier this year titled B-D,the new G-D of ‘Truth’ I had written about the same thing.

Strangely, for the Hebrews, a people who despised the Egyptians for their pagan beliefs, yet they adopted many Egyptian practices, including that of circumcision – see my post B-D, the new G-D of‘Truth’. Of course the Hebrews would claim that Abraham circumcised himself to show his covenant with YVWH.

OK then, we might as well begin our discussion with Abraham who the Bible told us came from Ur of the Chaldees, as in Genesis 11:27-31, which say:

27 Now these are the generations of Terah: Terah begat Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran begat Lot.

28 And Haran died before his father Terah in the land of his nativity, in Ur of the Chaldees.

29 And Abram and Nahor took them wives: the name of Abram's wife was Sarai; and the name of Nahor's wife, Milcah, the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah, and the father of Iscah.

30 But Sarai was barren; she had no child.

31 And Terah took Abram his son, and Lot the son of Haran his son's son, and Sarai his daughter in law, his son Abram's wife; and they went forth with them from Ur of the Chaldees, to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and dwelt there.

Abraham was born around 2000 BC according to those who also believed that Adam and Eve and their Fall happened around 4000 BC). But archaeologists said that Chaldeans (of the Chaldees) didn’t even exist until around the sixth to fifth century BC, nearly 1500 years after Abraham’s time.

Thus the claim that Abram (before he became Abraham) came from Ur of the Chaldees was likely a latter day invention (or writeup) at a time (after 586 BC) coincidentally when the Judeans, as slaves in Babylon, first wrote down the oral tradition of Abraham’s story while compiling the written Hebrew Bible Tanakh).


Now, just note Genesis 17:17 which says Abraham became hilarious when God told him he would have a son:

Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? And shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear?

This tells us that the age gap between Abraham and Sarah was 10 years.

OK, flashing back to an earlier period, specifically 25 years earlier, to Genesis 12:4, we have (before he changed his name to Abraham):

So Abram departed, as the Lord had spoken unto him: and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran.

Abraham was already 75 years old when he was instructed by God to leave Haran after his father died. Therefore Sarah would be sixty-five years old, being 10 years younger than her husband. It also tells us that there was a gap of at least 25 years between entering Egypt and having their son Isaac.

In Genesis 12:14-15 we have:

And it came to pass, that, when Abrams was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair.

The princes also of Pharaoh also saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house.

When entering Egypt, Abraham wanted Sarah to pretend she was his sister. The biblical reason was that he was afraid of being killed if it was known she was his wife, for he anticipated Sarah would attract lustful attention. And he was right. Pharaoh was told of her beauty, took her into his Palace and rewarded her ‘brother’ generously.

Here, some questions begged to be asked.


(1) What did the Egyptians see in a 65 year old Hebrew woman that made them acclaim she was fair (beautiful), and recommend the beauty to the Pharaoh, and why would a Pharaoh, who could have any woman in the land, want an old crone as his lover?

(2) Did the Pharaoh have his naughty ways with Sarah after taking her into the Palace?

(3) What was a pastoralist (shepherd) like Abraham doing in a cosmopolitan city like Ur (apart from the archaeological-historical fact that Ur existed only 1500 years later)? One would expect him to live in a tent in a rural area, but we are told by the bible he came from Ur of the Chaldees.

(4) Then, what would be the likelihood of a foreign commoner, a mere pastoralist, even allowing for him having a beautiful 65-year old wife, coming into contact with the royal house of Egypt, namely the princes and the Pharaoh? (Genesis 12:15) Can a great empire like Egypt be so small that a mere foreigner would, on entering its border, come into contact with or to the knowledge of its princes?

(5) Why is there a leitmotiv in the bible surrounding Abraham and Sarah, of the man and wife pretending to be brother and sister, of a Pharaoh or King taking (or attempting to take) the wife, of God then intervening to return the wife to the husband, and of the husband profiting greatly from the separation? The leitmotiv may be discerned in:

  • Abraham and the Pharaoh (Genesis 12:11-20)
  • Abraham and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 20:2-18) – Sarah was even older by then, around 90.
  • Isaac and Abimelech of Gerar (Genesis 26: 7-16) – we aren't too sure whether this was the same Abimelech for it was then more than 50 years later, but the King had a chief captain of the army named Phichol (Genesis 26:26) as was in the case of the earlier or Abraham’s Abimelech (Genesis 21:22).

    If it was the same Abimelech, 
    then it would suggest that Abraham and Isaac could well be the same person.

(6) Why was Sarah told to change her name from the original Sarai to Sarah, the latter in Hebrew meaning Princess? (Genesis 17:15)


What were the authors (or author) of Genesis trying to say, or do?

I leave the above for you to find out, wakakaka, including Genesis 12:16 which states: And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he asses, and menservants, and maidservants, and she asses, and camels.

If according to Judeo-Christian belief, Abraham was supposed to live around 2000 BC, then camels weren't domesticated yet for another 800 years, until around 1200 BC, coincidentally around the time when the Chaldeans existed and indeed, coincidentally around the time the Judeans compiled their written bible, the Tanakh.

You can draw your own conclusion as to the reliability of the Judeans' story as written by them in the Tanakh.


Carrying on with other biblical mysteries, wakakaka:

The Israelis journeyed from Rameses to Succoth. There were about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children ….. (Exodus 12:37)

The Book of Exodus narrates the preparation of the Hebraic exodus after the Pharaoh, cowered by the 10 plagues including the death of his firstborn, gave Moses leave to lead 600,000 male Jewish slaves plus their families, totalling some two million people, out of Egypt.

2,000,000 Hebrew slaves migrating out of Egypt!

Even allowing for some ancient exaggerations, yet there is not one single mention of this monumental migration in an ancient Egypt famed for its recording of anything and all things! No, not one!

Continuing:

Now the length of time the Israelite people lived in Egypt was 430 years. At the end of the 430 years, to the very day, all the Lords’ division left Egypt ….. (Exodus 12:40-41)

Nearly half a millennium of residence in Egypt by the hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of Hebrews – again there was not one ancient Egyptian record of them! Not one hieroglyphic, hieratic or demotic line anywhere!

As mentioned, this was a nation which recorded everything, about Pharaohs, their gods, floods, harvest, births, deaths, ownership of this and that, weather, social events, wars, etc, but not a skerrick of written line about 2,000,000 Hebrews living in their land for 430 years, let alone making a mass exodus.

This was an unexplained omission of amazing proportion by the Egyptian scribes. Or, was it?

Surely there must be something to explain the mysterious and very monumental omission in ancient Egyptian records on the significant Hebraic presence there, unless of course there was no Hebrew ever in Egypt, and thus no Hebraic exodus took place.

The most puzzling mystery has been that in a land of such fastidious recording of events, not one single line of hieroglyph or hieratic or demotic in Egypt’s famed and vast repository of recording made any mention of this race, their or their mass exodus from Egypt.

The only account of the Hebrews living in Egypt and their exodus out of Egypt is in the Tanakh, which coincidentally was written by their descendants, the Judeans while they were slaves in Babylon from 586 to 539 BC.


OK, as mentioned, the word Pharaoh is mentioned 274 times in the Bible in various descriptions and forms. In the first two books of the Old Testament (OT), namely Genesis and Exodus, it is referred to 155 times.

Yet, in that 155 times, the OT fails to identify which Pharaoh was involved in the respective events involving Hebrews. The time span as chronicled by the Books of Genesis and Exodus would logically suggest that the Pharaoh of Abraham and Sarah should be a different person to the Pharaoh of Joseph son of Jacob, and indeed to the Pharaoh of Moses and the Exodus.

In the story of Joseph, he was sold to an Egyptian Potiphar, one of Pharaoh’s officials (Genesis 39:1). After interpreting his famous ‘seven fat and seven lean years’ for the Pharaoh (Genesis 41: 25-32), the latter made him the Grand Vizier, the No 2 man in the land, and conferred on him an Egyptian name, Zapethnath-Paneah and married him off to an Egyptian wife, Asenath (meaning Gift of the Sun-God). She was the daughter of Potiphera, priest of On (Genesis 41:45).

Notice how detailed were the personalities identified, yet the name of the Pharaoh was not revealed. Instead the Pharaoh was merely referred to as ‘a new king over Egypt, who knew not Joseph’ (Exodus 1:8).

As for Moses, we read of Pharaoh learning of the killing of an Egyptian by this Prince of Egypt (Exodus 2:12), and naturally wanting to have Moses executed (Exodus 2:15). Of course by then Moses had fled.

Much later, after marrying Zipporah and witnessing the burning bush, he heard that the Pharaoh died. Around then, God ordered him back to Egypt to demand from the new Pharaoh the release of the Israelite slaves (Exodus 3:10).

Again, we observe the lack of details about one of the most significant Pharaoh in the biblical saga. Who was this Pharaoh? Or better, who were the Pharaohs, the one who died as well as his newly crowned successor?


Compare the seemingly evasive or, if one wants to be less conspiratorial, broad brushing of the Pharaohs’ identities, specifically those associated with the stories or events of Abraham to Moses, with the detailed genealogies of others in the Old Testament, as presented in Genesis Chapter 4:17-22 (Cain’s), Genesis Chapter 5 (Noah’s, he of the Flood and Ark fame), Genesis Chapter 10 (The sons of Noah and their families’), Genesis Chapter 11:10-32 (from Shem to Abraham), and the list of details goes on.

WHY?

So, were there Hebrews in Egypt after all? Was there ever an Exodus?

Incidentally, the word ‘Egypt’ appears in the Bible more than 750 times while ‘pharaoh’ is mentioned over 274 times. More than any of the Israelite nation’s neighbouring countries, Egypt was the most described country in the Scriptures.

·   Egypt – the nation that, according to the Bible, held 2,000,000 Hebrews in slavery until God instructed Moses to lead his people out of Egyptian bondage. The Egyptian pharaoh only released them after a bitter and acrimonious struggle resulting in the deaths of all Egyptian first-borns including the pharaoh’s own.

·   Egypt – where the Israelite people including its kings would always run to for refuge and sanctuary when threatened by other warring nations such as the Babylonians. The Israelite so-called prophet Jeremiah threatened the Israelites about running to Egypt for refuge when the Babylonians were advancing, by relaying God’s message: “As my anger and wrath have been poured out on those who lived in Jerusalem, so will my wrath be poured out on you when you go to Egypt” (Jer 42:18). But the Hebrews nevertheless went to seek sanctuary in Egypt, and Jeremiah, notwithstanding his own warnings, followed, purportedly to rail against the Israelites for picking up Egyptian worship (Jer 44), but more likely to save his own bloody skin, wakakaka.


On Egypt as a perennial sanctuary for the Israelites-Judeans, it may worthwhile venturing across into the New Testament to recall Matthew 2:13 which advised Yusuf (Yehoshua’s dad, you know, Joshua or with the Greek name of Jesus)  in a dream, of Herod’s murderous hunt for the newborn Messiah:

Arise, He said, take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt and stay there until I bring the word ………

And most surprising of all, in Deuteronomy, under 23: Exclusion From the Assembly, God warned the Hebrews not to allow the neighbouring nationalities to enter the assembly of the Lord, even unto the tenth generation, except for the Edomites and the Egyptians.

The Edomites were of course also Hebrews, ‘cousins’ to the ketuanan Israelite people, as they were descendants of Esau, the firstborn of Isaac, who lost his birthrights to Jacob through trickery and deceit.

In fact, Deuteronomy 23:7-8 read:

You shall not abhor an Edomite, for he is your brother. You shall not abhor an Egyptian, because you were an alien in his land; the children of the third generation born to them may enter the congregation of the Lord.

The Edomites I can understand, but why this special treatment for their so-called mortal enemies, the Egyptians, those oppressors who supposedly kept the Hebrews in bondage for 430 years, and required a series of terrifying divine-sent plagues to intimidate the Pharaoh before he released them from slavery.

Indeed why?

I am afraid that again, I’m going to leave all the above for you to find out, wakakaka. Call me a bloody tease if you like, wakakaka.

So now we come to RPK’s first statement I posted at the beginning of this post, namely:

According to Genesis, Abraham had a wife named Sarah who was barren and could not give him any children. Sarah had an Egyptian slave named Hagar, so Sarah told Abraham to use Hagar as a surrogate mother since she (Sarah) could not give Abraham any children.

Hagar soon became pregnant and not long after that Sarah, too, became pregnant. So now both of them were pregnant. Hagar’s son was named Ishmael while Sarah’s son was named Isaac. But Ishmael was elder to Isaac since he was born first.

Sarah soon became jealous and told Abraham to get rid of Hagar and Hagar’s son, Ishmael. So Abraham dumped both of them in the desert and left them there. God, who called Himself, El Shaddai, then appeared and told Sarah that she will become the mother of all nations.

Abraham casting Hagar and Ishmael out

Now, there are two things to note here. First of all, God acknowledged Isaac (the younger brother) and not Ishmael (the elder brother) as the true successor and heir to Abraham.

On RPK's last paragraph, whether it was the Hebraic God who acknowledged ‘Isaac (the younger brother) and not Ishmael (the elder brother) as the true successor and heir to Abraham’ would, in my opinion, depend on who was the Hebraic God, wakakaka.

The Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) was written by various people but mainly by (though not all) Davidic supporters (obviously of the House of Judah). ‘Davidic’ supporters mean supporters of King David who was of the House of Judah, the most evil and treacherous man in the entire bible.

David was even more treacherous than his eponymous ancestor, cheating Jacob. He plotted the murder of King Saul who doted on him, and f**ked Saul’s wife and Saul's son Jonathan (yes, he and Jonathan were lovers) to get to the throne.

And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. ... Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle Samuel 18:1-4 (KJV).

David and Jonathan

Though both his lover Jonathan and his wife Michal (Saul’s daughter and Jonathan’s sister) helped the bloke all the time, nonetheless he eventually had both of them murdered as he did to their father King Saul.

Naturally the Bible was written by his supporters to show that Saul became mad with jealousy etc etc and was forsaken by God, to justify David's trail of f**king and murders right up to the Israelite throne.

He also shagged the wives of many others to get what he wanted (presumably he must be a handsome Adonis) including the most infamous of all, Bathsheba, the wife of his most loyal general Uriah whom he deliberately sent into the thickest of battle to be killed.

Uriah, cuckolded and murdered by King David, so-called God's beloved

David was also guilty of many other crimes including treasonably consorting with Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, against Israel.

In the way that the New Testament would not have been written if there was no Yesohua ben Yusuf, the Tanakh would not have thus been written if there was no David.

David's supporters wrote the Tanakh to exonerate his many crimes, but fortunately for posterity they weren't the only writers of the Tanakh, hence through the writings of those who weren't his supporters we catch glimpses of his evil as well as the treachery of his eponymous cheating ancestor, Israel, or as Jacob was known by, in the Old Testament.

But an important point his supporters wanted to make was to show that contrary to Deuteronomy 21:15-17, God wanted him to be King.

So what does Deuteronomy 21:15-17 say? Essentially and significantly the following:

If a man has two wives, and he loves one but not the other, and both bear him sons but the firstborn is the son of the wife he does not love, when he wills his property to his sons, he must not give the rights of the firstborn to the son of the wife he loves in preference to his actual firstborn, the son of the wife he does not love.

He must acknowledge the son of his unloved wife as the firstborn by giving him a double share of all he has. That son is the first sign of his father’s strength. The right of the firstborn belongs to him.

So, where did that leave Ishmael as compared with Isaac in the eyes of God?

That’s the reason I opined earlier: Whether it was the Hebraic God who acknowledged ‘Isaac (the younger brother) and not Ishmael (the elder brother) as the true successor and heir to Abraham’ would depend on who was the Hebraic God – wakakaka again.

But why did David’s supporter want to diminish the age-old concept of primogeniture, which is (until even today in many races and cultures) the right, by law, or usually by custom and even religion as per Deuteronomy 21:15-17, of the firstborn son to inherit the family title, properties, even greater blessings compared with other sons, and which was what buggered Ishmael out from being Abraham's rightful heir.

That’s because David was not the first born of Jesse of Bethlehem. He was the youngest of Jesse’s eight children (sometimes mentioned as seven).

How could an eighth child become King of Israel?

Of course he could ........ BUT only if the Bible showed that God didn't favour primogeniture despite Deuteronomy 21:15-17.

And we'll see how a bible commentator would cunningly get around these two conflicting points, wakakaka.

Thus, in the story of Cain and Abel we have God favouring Abel over Cain, the first born. Conveniently the Tanakh had Cain murdering Abel.

Yes, no reason of whatever sort was provided by the Bible for God’s favouritism. It would only be in other subsequent explanatory documents or books that embarrassed clerics creatively explained away God’s inexplicable bias.

was the Hebrew God a meat lover who thus preferred
Abel's barbeque offerings over Cain's veggies?

Then we have our Ishmael and Isaac, with Ishmael conveniently being an Egyptian. Guess which nationality was Isaac, wakakaka. Don't know? Well, go back above and re-read my post, wakakaka.

Following that, we have Esau and Jacob. Again, conveniently we are told Esau sold his birthrights away to his younger brother for a bowl of lentils. Even allowing for that pro Davidic creation, we have their mother conspiring with Jacob to cheat, yes, CHEAT, his father into blessing him when the old blind man wanted to do that for his first born Esau.

How could God love such a cheat? How could God love his descendant David, the most treacherous murderous adulterer?

Can lah, because the Davidic supporters, not unlike our Utusan Malaysia and Biro Tatanegara, wakakaka, could write any bullshit!

As if that was not enough, when Joseph (of the Technicolor coat in the Old Testament) went to see his father Jacob the Cheat for blessings for his sons, Manasseh (first born) and Ephraim (the younger), make a guess who Jacob blessed more, wakakaka.

The Bible tells us that despite Joseph positioning his sons before Jacob so that the elder son Manasseh would be blessed by Jacob’s right hand (this being the hand which gave the greater proportion of blessings) and Ephraim by his father’s left hand, Jacob crossed his hands so that his right hand was on Ephraim’s head instead while his left hand blessed Manasseh but less according to Hebraic custom.

When Joseph tried to catch hold of his father’s right hand to have it on top of Manasseh head, Jacob resisted and said “I know it, my son, I know it: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations.” (Genesis 48:19) - Wakakaka.


And we have the biblical commentator who wanted it both ways, saying as we have suspected all along, that

This shows how the idea of firstborn in the Bible (as per Deuteronomy 21:15-17) is often a position of pre-eminence, not necessarily meaning 'first out of the womb'. Wakakaka, what utter bullshit.

Thus by creative biblical composition, David enjoyed the position of firstborn, even though he was the youngest son. Thus he was fit to be King of Israel, as was conveniently written by men and not God.

So naturally we have those Judean BTN writers (wakakaka) with Psalm 89:20-29 (KJV) informing us how God viewed David:

20 I have found David my servant; with my holy oil have I anointed him:

21 With whom my hand shall be established: mine arm also shall strengthen him.

22 The enemy shall not exact upon him; nor the son of wickedness afflict him.

23 And I will beat down his foes before his face, and plague them that hate him.

24 But my faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him: and in my name shall his horn be exalted.

25 I will set his hand also in the sea, and his right hand in the rivers.

26 He shall cry unto me, Thou art my father, my God, and the rock of my salvation.

27 Also I will make him my firstborn, higher than the kings of the earth.

28 My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him.

29 His seed also will I make to endure for ever, and his throne as the days of heaven.


That’s how and not why the Hebrew God inexplicably loved Abel over Cain, Isaac over Ishmael, cheating-Jacob over Esau, Ephraim over Manasseh, and of course the most evil man ever in the Bible, David the adulterous traitorous murderer and 8th son of Jesse of Bethlehem - all courtesy of the pro David bible writers.