[Milton-L] RE: the Immaculate Conception (clarified) (Nairba Sirrah)

Aaron Drucker penandpaper at mac.com
Sun Dec 19 06:45:10 EST 2010


I've been reviewing this very peculiar debate, and I must admit, I'm a bit estranged by the original claim.  I'm not inclined to defend Yahweh, but the text just doesn't read that He raped Mary.  I agree with Dr. Danielson, but for the sake of clarity, I'll draw it out in a bit more detail.

For simplicity's sake, I'll use the KJV as reference, though maybe on a Milton board we should be using the Geneva.  Anyway, unless I am mistaken, in all the translations I've read it goes more or less this way:

In Mark and John, there is no account of Jesus' conception.

In Matthew 1:18, all it says is that Mary is his mother, and Jesus was the "child of the Holy Ghost."  It carries no discussion of consent.  Therefore, you cannot make claim to rape.

Luke contains the only detailed account. There, Gabriel comes to Mary to announce that she has found "favour" with God.  Then he explains the situation (1:26-37) in the future tense ("shall come...shall overshadow..." (Luke 1:31)), and she actually responds to him before she is impregnated:  "And Mary said, 'Behold the handmaid of the lord; be it unto me according to thy word'"  (Luke 1:38).  In other words:  "Yes, I'd be happy to conceive and carry the Lord's child."  And then angel departed from her.  Apparently, she conceives sometime between the angel leaving and her arrival at Elisabeth's the following month, though the Bible lacks the actual scene in which Yahweh "overshadows" Mary.  This is consent before the fact, and therefore not rape.  

Later, when asked how it happened, her reaction is jubilation and celebration (Luke 1:45-55), which is uncommon for a rape victim.  From all evidence and appearances, she consented and was happy about it.  Again, I tend to shy away from calling that rape.  

So ends our survey of the Gospels.  There is no other primary evidence that deals with an account of Jesus' conception.

While you may be debating nuances of encyclopedic catechism (which I also taught in Catholic High School, and it's varied dogmas remain perplexing for a lapsed-Protestant-turned-athiest), I'm looking at a source text that makes quite clear that Mary's decision was both consensual and exciting to her.

Now, if you'd like to make the case -- as I rather amuse my classes by doing -- that Jesus is God's apology for wrongfully indicting Eve, then we can have some fun discussing the finer points of theological causality.  However, the Bible is really quite clear that the Immaculate Conception of Jesus was consensual and sinless.  Directly put, the text does not support your reading, regardless of anyone's application of Immaculate Conception.

Best, and Happy Holidays,
Aaron Drucker
Claremont Graduate University

On Dec 19, 2010, at 12:46 AM, milton-l-request at lists.richmond.edu wrote:

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> Today's Topics:
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>   1. RE: Jeffery please (one last time) (Nairba Sirrah)
>   2. Re: Jeffery please (one last time) (Horace Jeffery Hodges)
> 
> 
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> 
> Message: 1
> Date: Sun, 19 Dec 2010 08:27:39 +0000
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please (one last time)
> To: <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
> Message-ID: <SNT128-W3072DDAE4515A6E1D0F79FC1180 at phx.gbl>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="windows-1252"
> 
> 
> Hopefully this settles the issue. A scholar contacted me privately about this, and I gave him a pretty good response to clear this up. I realize now the encyclopedic statement you are referring to. News to me. I had heard people talk about this. But that is not what my copy of the Roman Catholic Catechism, or any other religious reference I have, says.
> 
> Please consider what you saying. If what you are saying is true, then Mary was God's first immaculately conceived child on earth.
> 
> With all due respect to those inter-acting with me on this, please, I don't want to make any more enemies.
> 
> But the story of Mary's birth is not in the Bible. The tradition of Saint Anne (Mary's mother) came from European folklore. It was adopted by the Vatican merely by regional concession because medieval Europe loved believing in saints.
> 
> But it has nothing to do with Biblical foundation. In the book of Mark, even the conception of Jesus is not mentioned, let alone Mary's.
> 
> For the last time, for 2,000 years "the immaculate conception" has meant the conception of Jesus in the womb of Mary by God.
> 
> What you are referring to is a divergence, meaning we are talking about TWO immaculate conceptions.
> 
> But again, if we are, then Mary was Jesus' sister....the first person born of a womb impregnated by God. Which is NOT in the Bible at all.
> 
> Now please, can we stop this? You all know what I meant.
> 
> 
> 
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:57:02 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>> From your response, I infer that you are referring to the Romann Catholic doctrine. Here's the Catholic Encyclopedia:
> 
> http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm
> 
> 
> You can read there that the "Immaculate Conception" refers to the process by which Mary was conceived.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:47:08 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> 
> 
> 
> I'm sorry Mr. Hodges, I'm not continuing with you about this. I have the Roman Catholic Catechism as well. I have no clue why you are debating this. I've stated my point...a point that needs no statement in the first place. Billions of people know you are incorrect. I will not respond again. Please don't use my name in another post.
> 
> 
> 
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:41:52 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> "'The Immaculate Conception' refers to how God impregnated Mary with Jesus."
> 
> Nairba, are you saying that this is what you mean by the expression "Immaculate Conception," or that this is what is meant by the Roman Catholic doctrine?
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:36:06 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> 
> 
> 
> I am NOT wrong. If you are actually reading an excerpt from the Roman Catholic Catechism, it is simply a typographical error. There is nothing in the Biblical canon about the birth of Mary. Nothing. There is no reason for the church to have any doctrine about how Mary was conceived.
> 
> "The Immaculate Conception" refers to how God impregnated Mary with Jesus. Even people who don't practice Christianity know that. Please stop saying i'm wrong. I am not wrong.
> 
> 
> 
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:31:38 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (clarified)
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> No, Nairba, you are wrong. The Roman Catholic doctrine of the immaculate conception refers to the process by which Mary was conceived in her mother's womb.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:26:28 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (clarified)
> 
> 
> 
> Hello Jeffery,
> 
> good hearing from you. But..
> 
> no, again. If your statement were true it would be dealing with the birth of Mary. Conception refers to the conceiving of a child, a fetus. The person being conceived in the most famous case of "immaculate conception" is JESUS. Jesus! you both know what I meant.
> 
> As for the Biblical passages quoted by Professor Danielson, all of us scholars know there are many, many different translations of that particular book and verse...and have several very different wordings and implications.
> 
> But in them all, is the declaration made by god; the divine mandate of "this is what is going to happen to you." How Mary responds, as far as my contention is concerened, is irrelevant. God didn't offer her a choice.
> 
> Giving a declaration of impregnating a woman is a violation of that woman's sanctity, no who (or what) makes that declaration. Her response could simply have been a moment of accepting inneviatablity. For all we know, she was mortified. Or madder than Hell.
> 
> 
> 
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:15:00 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> Nairba, you are wrong. The immaculate conception refers to the process by which Mary was conceived, not the process by which Jesus was conceived.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:05:04 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
> 
> 
> 
> amazing you bothered to post that..."the immaculate conception" is the conception of JESUS inside Mary. It is therefore, quite "concerned" with both Mary and Jesus, and God.
> 
> and to append the word "doctrine" to it is absurd.
> 
> Some of you with your detial debating are truly frightening.
> 
>> Date: Sun, 19 Dec 2010 01:56:09 -0500
>> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
>> From: alanshorn at gmail.com
>> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
>> 
>> Once again, as Professor Danielson pointed out to you, the doctrine of
>> Immaculate Conception is concerned with the conception of Mary, not of
>> Jesus.
>> 
>> Alan
>> 
>> On Sun, Dec 19, 2010 at 1:37 AM, Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com> wrote:
>>> 
>>> Hello Dennis,
>>> 
>>> didn't mean to infuriate. But that unfortunately happens a lot on here.
>>> 
>>> In response, of course the Roman Catholic church is going to see it that way. But the main essence of the story is that Mary did not have a choice. God was the father. And she was the mother. She got preganant by divine insemination.
>>> 
>>> As hard as it may be to face or admit, the "immacualate conception" by ancient and modern definition IS rape. She had no choice. Not exactly immaculate. Had God asked her permission, then fine. But as is, it was rape.
>>> 
>>> Not to mention she was already married to another man. Adultery.
>>> 
>>> And as for it not having anything to do with Milton, in Milton Jesus is "begotten" in Heaven. And considering he soon after fought in a war, was also born an adult.
>>> 
>>> What's so wrong about considering the physical implications of these spiritual narratives? In Milton, we are to suppose that "the Son" is zapped into her uterus and reborn...but as you so graciosly pointed out, in Luke it clearly says she will conceive, meaning a sexual bonding between father and mother.
>>> 
>>> Again, sorry for the offence and infuriation, but a fact is a fact.
>>> 
>>> 
>>>> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 21:42:13 -0800
>>>> From: danielso at interchange.ubc.ca
>>>> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception
>>>> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
>>>> 
>>>> OK, so this hasn't much to do with Milton. And perhaps I shouldn't rise
>>>> to the bait. But Mr. Sirrah's assumptions are apparently false
>>>> (infuriating, too, but let that pass) on two counts:
>>>> 
>>>> 1. The Roman Catholic doctrine of the Immaculate Conception states that
>>>> *Mary* was conceived without sin; it wasn't officially formulated as
>>>> dogma until the 19th century.
>>>> 
>>>> 2. If Sirrah means to say that *Mary* was impregnated against her will,
>>>> that statement is contrary to the plain meaning of the biblical account
>>>> of Luke 2:26-38 (See below, noting the future tense in the angel's "you
>>>> will conceive," plus Mary's compliant response).
>>>> 
>>>> I'm done, except to thank Louis Schwartz for his eminently sensible
>>>> comments yesterday, and to wish my fellow Miltonists all the blessings
>>>> of the season, whatever feasts or festivals they observe.
>>>> 
>>>> Dennis Danielson
>>>> _______________________
>>>> 
>>>> Luke 2:26-38
>>>> 
>>>> In the sixth month of Elizabeth‚s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel
>>>> to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a
>>>> man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin‚s name was Mary. The
>>>> angel went to her and said, „Greetings, you who are highly favored! The
>>>> Lord is with you.‰
>>>> 
>>>> Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of
>>>> greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, „Do not be afraid,
>>>> Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to
>>>> a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be
>>>> called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne
>>>> of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob‚s descendants forever;
>>>> his kingdom will never end.‰
>>>> 
>>>> „How will this be,‰ Mary asked the angel, „since I am a virgin?‰
>>>> 
>>>> The angel answered, „The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of
>>>> the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be
>>>> called[b] the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have
>>>> a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is
>>>> in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail.‰
>>>> 
>>>> „I am the Lord‚s servant,‰ Mary answered. „May your word to me be
>>>> fulfilled.‰
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On 10-12-18 9:07 PM, Nairba Sirrah wrote:
>>>>> in the vein of considering the classic epic hero and the classic epic
>>>>> villain, let us remember that "the immaculate conception" was (if it
>>>>> actually happened) categorically...rape. Anytime you impregnate a woman
>>>>> against her will, it is rape.
>>>>> 
>>>>> So if Satan is the hero, guess who's the villain.
>>>> 
>>>> --
>>>> Dennis Danielson
>>>> Professor of English
>>>> University of British Columbia
>>>> #397 - 1873 East Mall
>>>> Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z1
>>>> telephone: 604-822-4092
>>>> Author: The First Copernican
>>>> Editor: Paradise Lost, Parallel Prose Edition
>>>> WEB: http://faculty.arts.ubc.ca/ddaniels/
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>> Milton-L mailing list
>>>> Milton-L at lists.richmond.edu
>>>> Manage your list membership and access list archives at http://lists.richmond.edu/mailman/listinfo/milton-l
>>>> 
>>>> Milton-L web site: http://johnmilton.org/
>>> 
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Milton-L mailing list
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>>> 
>>> Milton-L web site: http://johnmilton.org/
>> 
>> _______________________________________________
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>> 
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> 
> _______________________________________________ Milton-L mailing list Milton-L at lists.richmond.edu Manage your list membership and access list archives at http://lists.richmond.edu/mailman/listinfo/milton-l Milton-L web site: http://johnmilton.org/ 
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> ------------------------------
> 
> Message: 2
> Date: Sun, 19 Dec 2010 00:45:36 -0800 (PST)
> From: Horace Jeffery Hodges <jefferyhodges at yahoo.com>
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Jeffery please (one last time)
> To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
> Message-ID: <395840.21818.qm at web54601.mail.re2.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> 
> Nairba, I wasn't being contentious. I was simply attempting to clear things up. 
> The expression "Immaculate Conception" means what the Catholic Church says it 
> means because it's a Roman Catholic doctrine. Christianity is not limited to the 
> Bible, but if one does wish to limit oneself to that, then one won't find the 
> expression "Immaculate Conception" there with reference to the conception of 
> Jesus either.
> 
> Also, I would be curious about what your own copy of the Roman Catholic 
> Cathecism literally states.
> 
> Finally, in a list of this sort, one has to expect critical questions and 
> requests for clarification. That's the way this list works. It's the social 
> contract for joining this society of scholars. Not everybody likes this sort of 
> critical discussion, I understand, but that's the sort of discussion to expect 
> on this list.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 5:27:39 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please (one last time)
> 
> Hopefully this settles the issue. A scholar contacted me privately about this, 
> and I gave him a pretty good response to clear this up. I realize now the 
> encyclopedic statement you are referring to. News to me. I had heard people talk 
> about this. But that is not what my copy of the Roman Catholic Catechism, or any 
> other religious reference I have, says.
> Â 
> Please consider what you saying. If what you are saying is true, then Mary was 
> God's first immaculately conceived child on earth.
> Â 
> With all due respect to those inter-acting with me on this, please, I don't want 
> to make any more enemies.
> Â 
> But the story of Mary's birth is not in the Bible. The tradition of Saint Anne 
> (Mary's mother)Â came from European folklore. It was adopted by the Vatican 
> merely by regional concession because medieval Europe loved believing in saints.
> Â 
> But it has nothing to do with Biblical foundation. In the book of Mark, even the 
> conception of Jesus is not mentioned, let alone Mary's.
> Â 
> For the last time, for 2,000 years "the immaculate conception" has meant the 
> conception of Jesus in the womb of Mary by God.
> Â 
> What you are referring to is a divergence, meaning we are talking about TWO 
> immaculate conceptions.
> Â 
> But again, if we are, then Mary was Jesus' sister....the first person born of a 
> womb impregnated by God. Which is NOT in the Bible at all.
> Â 
> Now please, can we stop this? You all know what I meant.
> Â 
> ________________________________
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:57:02 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
>> From your response, I infer that you are referring to the Romann Catholic 
> doctrine. Here's the Catholic Encyclopedia:
> 
> http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm
> 
> 
> You can read there that the "Immaculate Conception" refers to the process by 
> which Mary was conceived.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:47:08 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> 
> I'm sorry Mr. Hodges, I'm not continuing with you about this. I have the Roman 
> Catholic Catechism as well. I have no clue why you are debating this. I've 
> stated my point...a point that needs no statement in the first place. Billions 
> of people know you are incorrect. I will not respond again. Please don't use my 
> name in another post.
> Â 
> ________________________________
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:41:52 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> "'The Immaculate Conception' refers to how God impregnated Mary with Jesus."
> 
> Nairba, are you saying that this is what you mean by the expression "Immaculate 
> Conception," or that this is what is meant by the Roman Catholic doctrine?
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:36:06 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Jeffery please
> 
> I am NOT wrong. If you are actually reading an excerpt from the Roman Catholic 
> Catechism, it is simply a typographical error. There is nothing in the Biblical 
> canon about the birth of Mary. Nothing. There is no reason for the church to 
> have any doctrine about how Mary was conceived.
> Â 
> Â "The Immaculate Conception" refers to how God impregnated Mary with Jesus. Even 
> people who don't practice Christianity know that. Please stop saying i'm wrong. 
> I am not wrong.
> Â 
> ________________________________
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:31:38 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (clarified)
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> No, Nairba, you are wrong. The Roman Catholic doctrine of the immaculate 
> conception refers to the process by which Mary was conceived in her mother's 
> womb.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:26:28 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (clarified)
> 
> Hello Jeffery,
> Â 
> good hearing from you. But..
> Â 
> no, again. If your statement were true it would be dealing with the birth of 
> Mary. Conception refers to the conceiving of a child, a fetus. The person being 
> conceived in the most famous case of "immaculate conception" is JESUS. Jesus! 
> you both know what I meant.
> Â 
> As for the Biblical passages quoted by Professor Danielson, all of us scholars 
> know there are many, many different translations of that particular book and 
> verse...and have several very different wordings and implications.
> Â 
> But in them all, is the declaration made by god; the divine mandate of "this is 
> what is going to happen to you." How Mary responds, as far as my contention is 
> concerened, is irrelevant. God didn't offer her a choice.
> Â 
> Giving a declaration of impregnating a woman is a violation of that woman's 
> sanctity, no who (or what) makes that declaration. Her response could simply 
> have been a moment of accepting inneviatablity. For all we know, she was 
> mortified. Or madder than Hell.
> Â 
> ________________________________
> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 23:15:00 -0800
> From: jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> 
> 
> Nairba, you are wrong. The immaculate conception refers to the process by which 
> Mary was conceived, not the process by which Jesus was conceived.
> 
> Jeffery Hodges
> 
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com>
> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
> Sent: Sun, December 19, 2010 4:05:04 PM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
> 
> amazing you bothered to post that..."the immaculate conception" is the 
> conception of JESUS inside Mary. It is therefore, quite "concerned" with both 
> Mary and Jesus, and God.
> Â 
> and to append the word "doctrine" to it is absurd.
> Â 
> Some of you with your detial debating are truly frightening.
> Â 
>> Date: Sun, 19 Dec 2010 01:56:09 -0500
>> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception (response)
>> From: alanshorn at gmail.com
>> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
>> 
>> Once again, as Professor Danielson pointed out to you, the doctrine of
>> Immaculate Conception is concerned with the conception of Mary, not of
>> Jesus.
>> 
>> Alan
>> 
>> On Sun, Dec 19, 2010 at 1:37 AM, Nairba Sirrah <nairbasirrah at msn.com> wrote:
>>> 
>>> Hello Dennis,
>>> 
>>> didn't mean to infuriate. But that unfortunately happens a lot on here.
>>> 
>>> In response, of course the Roman Catholic church is going to see it that way. 
>> But the main essence of the story is that Mary did not have a choice. God was 
>> the father. And she was the mother. She got preganant by divine insemination.
>>> 
>>> As hard as it may be to face or admit, the "immacualate conception" by 
>> ancient and modern definition IS rape. She had no choice. Not exactly 
>> immaculate. Had God asked her permission, then fine. But as is, it was rape.
>>> 
>>> Not to mention she was already married to another man. Adultery.
>>> 
>>> And as for it not having anything to do with Milton, in Milton Jesus is 
>> "begotten" in Heaven. And considering he soon after fought in a war, was also 
>> born an adult.
>>> 
>>> What's so wrong about considering the physical implications of these 
>> spiritual narratives? In Milton, we are to suppose that "the Son" is zapped into 
>> her uterus and reborn...but as you so graciosly pointed out, in Luke it clearly 
>> says she will conceive, meaning a sexual bonding between father and mother.
>>> 
>>> Again, sorry for the offence and infuriation, but a fact is a fact.
>>> 
>>> 
>>>> Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 21:42:13 -0800
>>>> From: danielso at interchange.ubc.ca
>>>> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] the Immaculate Conception
>>>> To: milton-l at lists.richmond.edu
>>>> 
>>>> OK, so this hasn't much to do with Milton. And perhaps I shouldn't rise
>>>> to the bait. But Mr. Sirrah's assumptions are apparently false
>>>> (infuriating, too, but let that pass) on two counts:
>>>> 
>>>> 1. The Roman Catholic doctrine of the Immaculate Conception states that
>>>> *Mary* was conceived without sin; it wasn't officially formulated as
>>>> dogma until the 19th century.
>>>> 
>>>> 2. If Sirrah means to say that *Mary* was impregnated against her will,
>>>> that statement is contrary to the plain meaning of the biblical account
>>>> of Luke 2:26-38 (See below, noting the future tense in the angel's "you
>>>> will conceive," plus Mary's compliant response).
>>>> 
>>>> I'm done, except to thank Louis Schwartz for his eminently sensible
>>>> comments yesterday, and to wish my fellow Miltonists all the blessings
>>>> of the season, whatever feasts or festivals they observe.
>>>> 
>>>> Dennis Danielson
>>>> _______________________
>>>> 
>>>> Luke 2:26-38
>>>> 
>>>> In the sixth month of Elizabethâ•˙s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel
>>>> to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a
>>>> man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virginâ•˙s name was Mary. The
>>>> angel went to her and said, ╲Greetings, you who are highly favored! The
>>>> Lord is with you.╡
>>>> 
>>>> Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of
>>>> greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ╲Do not be afraid,
>>>> Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to
>>>> a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be
>>>> called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne
>>>> of his father David, and he will reign over Jacobâ•˙s descendants forever;
>>>> his kingdom will never end.╡
>>>> 
>>>> ╲How will this be,╡ Mary asked the angel, ╲since I am a virgin?╡
>>>> 
>>>> The angel answered, ╲The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of
>>>> the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be
>>>> called[b] the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have
>>>> a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is
>>>> in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail.╡
>>>> 
>>>> ╲I am the Lordâ•˙s servant,╡ Mary answered. ╲May your word to me be
>>>> fulfilled.╡
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On 10-12-18 9:07 PM, Nairba Sirrah wrote:
>>>>> in the vein of considering the classic epic hero and the classic epic
>>>>> villain, let us remember that "the immaculate conception" was (if it
>>>>> actually happened) categorically...rape. Anytime you impregnate a woman
>>>>> against her will, it is rape.
>>>>> 
>>>>> So if Satan is the hero, guess who's the villain.
>>>> 
>>>> --
>>>> Dennis Danielson
>>>> Professor of English
>>>> University of British Columbia
>>>> #397 - 1873 East Mall
>>>> Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z1
>>>> telephone: 604-822-4092
>>>> Author: The First Copernican
>>>> Editor: Paradise Lost, Parallel Prose Edition
>>>> WEB: http://faculty.arts.ubc.ca/ddaniels/
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>>> 
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