The Role Of Ignorance In The Hebrew Bible And The Popol Vuh

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Ted Nania – 9/5/17
Human Event – Professor Fedock
The Role of Ignorance
A defining characteristic of humanity is our unparalleled ability to reason, to see the world in new ways and to reinvent it within our minds. Yet, a human mind without knowledge, one ignorant to the workings of its surroundings, is limited in what it can achieve, and changed in how it will act. In humankind’s creation stories portrayed in the Hebrew Bible and the Popol Vuh, the gods utilize human ignorance in difference ways. I will argue that while ignorance is used as a tool by the gods to guarantee human worship and thus their own existence in the Popol Vuh, the god of the Hebrew Bible concedes that total ignorance is detrimental to the advancement of the human race and uses it rather as a tool to advance humanity’s own success. A prime difference between the Popol Vuh’s version of the creation of humanity and that of the Hebrew Bible’s is their acquisition of knowledge, which ultimately relates to the intended purpose for humanity by the deities in each of these works. The importance of this chosen level of knowledge in the Popol Vuh is of particular importance in regards to the gods’ motives behind the creation of humanity in the first place, which results from the need for “one who will honor us, who will respect us; one who will be a provider and a sustainer,” (pg. 66). The clear driving force behind the gods’ actions is to create a species which can worship their names on the earth, thereby
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