Conversations: Impotent or Evil?


Lysandra
We should note that people of all faiths regularly assure us that God is not responsible for human suffering.

Helena
This belief undermines the claim that God is both omniscient and omnipotent. Now, this is the age-old problem of theodicy, and we should consider it solved. If God exists, either He can do nothing to stop the most egregious calamities, or He does not care to. God, therefore, is either impotent or evil.

Lysandra
Even though your reasoning is correct, it might be rendered null and void by the belief that any omniscient being cannot be judged by human standards of morality.

Helena
Caution, that is a pirouette. Continue reading

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Gagingwell is a hamlet in West Oxfordshire, England.

Until Abramic religions were introduced in Egyptian society, women had been independent, empowered and emancipated citizens.

Roman Emperor Vespasian introduced a tax on the sale of urine. Therefore, the phrase pecunia non olet, ‘money does not stink’, is ascribed to him.

Mutterkuchen, the German word for placenta literally means ‘mother cake’.

Stravinsky had an affair with Coco Chanel in the summer of 1920. He was revising the Rite of Spring at the time, and she was about to launch Chanel No.5.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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Gymnophoria is the sense that someone is mentally undressing you.

Elephants tickle each other.

The Sami people of northern Finland use a measure called Poronkusema: the distance a reindeer can walk before needing to urinate.

The novelist Kurt Vonnegut ran America’s first Saab dealership.

When Rameses II’s mummified body was shipped to France in 1974, it was issued with a passport. Its occupation was “King (deceased)”.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

Ideal Female Bodies (i)


Ancient Egypt (c. 1292 – 1069 B.C.)

Women in ancient Egypt enjoyed many freedoms that would take thousands of years for women to enjoy again. Ancient Egyptian society was sex-positive, and premarital sex was entirely acceptable. Women could own property independently from their husbands, and could initiate divorce from their husbands without shame. Women could even inherit titles, even become Pharaoh.

Art from this era of ancient Egypt tells us that long, braided hair was an important aspect of female beauty. Braids framed a symmetrical face, and women wore thick black kohl around their eyes. Women are shown as slender, with high waists and slim shoulders.

“No one wants to see curvy women.” – Karl Lagerfeld

Ancient Greece (c. 500 – 300 B.C.)

Aristotle called the female form “a deformed male,” ancient Greece was pretty male-centric. The ancient Greeks were more focused on the ideal male physique than women’s, meaning that it was the men of this time period, rather than the women, who had to live up to high standards of physical perfection. This sounds good, except that this meant women were body-shamed for not looking like men.

Nudity was a common part of ancient Greek society, but sculptures and paintings of nude women were often covered. It is thought that the first important female nude sculpture in classical Greece was Aphrodite of Cnidus, who showed that beauty in ancient Greece meant plump and full-figured bodies.

“Girls are like country roads, the best ones have curves.” – internet meme

Han Dynasty (c. 206 B.C. – 220 A.D.)

Chinese society has been patriarchal since ancient times, which as a result minimized women’s roles and rights in society. During the Han Dynasty period of Chinese history, feminine beauty meant delicate, slim bodies with a radiating inner glow. Women were expected to have pale skin, long black hair, red lips, white teeth, and a graceful walk with small feet. Small feet were an aspect of Chinese beauty that would continue for hundreds of years.

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” – Oscar Wilde

See other: Ideal Female Body Types Throughout History

Feminism in Ancient Egypt


The Egyptians believed that joy and happiness were legitimate goals of life and regarded home and family as the major source of delight.

Ancient Egyptian society was sex-positive, and premarital sex was entirely acceptable. Love and emotional support were considered to be important parts of relations. Egyptians loved and respected children as people and not just as potential workers and care-takers.

The lover, all as frantic,
Sees Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt:
The poet’s eye, in fine frenzy rolling,
Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
– William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Egypt treated its women better than any of the other major civilizations of the ancient world. In fact, women in ancient Egypt enjoyed many freedoms that would take thousands of years for women to enjoy again.

Women were regarded as totally equal to men as far as the law was concerned. They could own property, borrow money, sign contracts, initiate divorce, appear in court as a witness, etc. Of course, they were also equally subject to whatever responsibilities normally accompanied those rights. Women could even become Pharaoh in special circumstances.

The takeover of Abramic religions has had a disastrous impact on Egyptian society – Islam has been particularly horrible to the position of women. Consider the following comparison between the average life of Ancient Egyptian women and present-day Egyptian women:

Sociology
In Ancient Egypt, man and women shared all activities including festivals, religious ceremonies and daily life. In modern Egypt, men and women live segregated lives.

Fashion
In the ancient world, Egyptian women wore simple liberal clothes, nudity was permitted and female servant girls, dancers and acrobats went around totally or semi-nude for their jobs. Nowadays, thanks to the Abramic religious misogyny, women are forced to wear very conservative clothes.

Equality
Thousands of years ago, in Egypt, privileges were not uniform from one class to another, but within the given classes equal rights between genders. In present-day Egypt, the mantra of “Allah favoured men over women” is the order of the day. Modern Egypt is a patriarchal society dominated by men.

Marriage
In Ancient Egypt, male polygamy was common in nobility, but unusual in lower classes. Interestingly however, women were partners in divorce settlements. Today, male polygamy is widely spread in all social classes. And only men can divorce, Muslim women have no right to divorce their partner.

Legal Rights
Women could manage and own private property, including: land, portable goods, servants, slaves and livestock in Ancient Egypt. And unlike women in most other ancient civilizations, the Egyptian women seems to have enjoyed the same legal and economic rights as men. They were regarded as totally equal to men as far as the law was concerned, and could conclude any kind of legal settlement in court. Nowadays, women receive half the financial rights of men, and the manipulation of the strict inheritance laws are not permitted.

Sex
Sexuality and romance were open, and considered to be an important part of life, references to sex and love poems were freely written in literature. Contrary to Ancient Egypt, in modern Egypt, sex is a taboo – transgressions may lead under law to severe penalties. Love is viewed as a weakness and is considered bad conduct for unmarried women.

Herodotus on Egyptian Women


‘The Egyptians appear to have reversed the ordinary practices of mankind. Women attend markets and are employed in trade, while men stay at home and do the weaving! Men in Egypt carry loads on their head, women on their shoulder. Women pass water standing up, men sitting down. To ease themselves, they go indoors, but eat outside on the streets, on the theory that what is unseemly, but necessary, should be done in private, and what is not unseemly should be done openly.’

– Herodotus II: 33-37