Skip to comments.28 Fundamental Principles of the Founding Fathers
Posted on 05/20/2010 11:39:50 AM PDT by JimBobWay
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I think studies into the supernatural have been elevated to such levels, because it gives us all a chance to argue, discuss and compare our lofty theories, without that pain in the butt need or ability to prove any of it.
That sounds like a defense of our president’s economic programs and theories..... ;^)
Yes, but the issue is confused by the context of the times. That is, that European nations proclaimed that their nations and their kings were appointed by God, and as such, to disagree with the king was also heresy.
So, with all due respect to God, the founding fathers wanted no pretense that the US constitution was written in heaven. As Lincoln later said, that it was “of the people, by the people, and for the people.”
This in no way disparages God, in fact just the opposite. It takes away the use of God’s name from the vanity of secular law. This is no small thing, as it is said that “those who enjoy sausage and the law should never see either being made.”
With this idea behind the constitution, the people can feel free to create, change or amend the US constitution and US laws, without offending heaven. If heaven is offended, then it is up to heaven to say so, not some smarmy Episcopalian leftist priest.
This is far more respectful of God than proclaiming that He directs your hand in creating zoning ordinances and mandating the minimum size of bikini swimsuits, and all who say otherwise are heathens.
Read the book a few months back. Really excellent read.
Recommend another of Dr. Skousen's books entitled, "The Making of America.
Also recommend another volume outlining those principles, published in 1987's Bicentennial of the Constitution Year, entitled, "Our Ageless Constitution."
In addition to outlining and describing the principles, the Editors of "Our Ageless Constitution" engaged constitutional scholars for the purpose of tracing, step by step, how those fundamental principles had been eroded and changed over the 200 years.
Like "The 5000 Year Leap," "Our Ageless Constitution" has been reprinted and is ready for purchase here. Those who praised the book included President Ronald Reagan (see the Endorsements tab on web site).
Understanding the principles and the steps by which those principles have been ignored, disregarded, and bypassed is essential to any effort to return America to her foundations. TEA Partiers, and all who love liberty, should add these 3 books to their libraries and share with their friends.
Thanks for the ping!
>>The founders believed in a creator. Those who abhor the studies into the supernatural (in favor of honoring their gods in politics) fail in Aristotles encouragement, who said it is the highest calling of the human mind.
“To talk of immaterial existences is to talk of nothings. To say that the human soul, angels, god, are immaterial, is to say they are nothings, or that there is no god, no angels, no soul. I cannot reason otherwise ... without plunging into the fathomless abyss of dreams and phantasms. I am satisfied, and sufficiently occupied with the things which are, without tormenting or troubling myself about those which may indeed be, but of which I have no evidence.”
— Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Adams, August 15, 1820
“And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.”
—Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823
“I have recently been examining all the known superstitions of the world, and do not find in our particular superstition [Christianity] one redeeming feature. They are all alike, founded upon fables and mythologies”
—Thomas Jefferson (Letter to Dr. Woods).
“Christianity neither is, nor ever was, a part of the common law.”
— Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814,
“The common law existed while the Anglo-Saxons were yet pagans, at a time when they had never yet heard the name of Christ pronounced or knew that such a character existed.”
— Thomas Jefferson, letter to Major John Cartwright, June 5, 1824
“That form [of self-government] which we have substituted for that which bound men under the chains of monkish ignorance and superstition restores the free right to the unbounded exercise of reason and freedom of opinion.”
—Thomas Jefferson to Roger C. Weightman, 1826.
So, to sum all that up, what message are you attempting to deliver?
>So, to sum all that up, what message are you attempting to deliver?
There is no question that Jefferson was one of those who ‘abhorred the studies into the supernatural’. In fact, the discussions between him and John Adams with regards to Plato, Jefferson’s bible, etc., show that Adams, as well, held similar thoughts. The ‘Creator’ and ‘Nature’s God’ was not the Christian God for many of the founders or for many of the people at the time of the founding. I’m not saying they were ‘deists’ in the absolute sense, they were not - they did believe in a ‘Providence overlooking’, eg. - but Jefferson himself, rejected all the supernaturalism of Christianity - the idea that Jesus was the ‘son of God’, the virgin birth, the resurrection and any other aspect that didn’t, in his view, reflect reality and reason.
What may be true of Samual Adams, was not true of John, Jefferson, Madison, Franklin, Paine, Monroe, to name a few.
You explained your point very well. Thank You.
A belief in God does not make one a follower of Christianity. From what I gathered in my reading, many people in that time believed in a creator - - and seriously hoped that there was a final judgement by that creator.
Of course, tyrants wish nothing of the sort.
thanks much. Grateful for outlets like Free Republic.
> You explained your point very well. Thank You.
> A belief in God does not make one a follower of Christianity. From what I gathered in my reading, many people in that time believed in a creator - - and seriously hoped that there was a final judgement by that creator.
> Of course, tyrants wish nothing of the sort.
Some ‘background’ ;-)
Not like this subject hasn’t arisen before :-)
And you’re implication that tyrants may face a ‘final judgment’ goes further into the ‘immaterial things’ than Jefferson would be comfortable with.
Another thing that comes up in the conversation about an ‘overseeing Providence’ is the idea that the US form of gov’t was ‘guided by an invisible hand’ - I believe Washington used those words (he must have read Adam Smith :-) However, the idea of something coming about from the Creator, could be in the form of a deistic view of ‘design’ that ‘all was set in motion at creation’ and that the results of that was being felt in the 18th century without there being a direct and present ‘guiding hand’ of God playing out his hand. [some Christians, admirably, imo, use this - ‘design’ - to explain evolution - ‘that’s the way God planned it originally - next question’. lol... It’s a good argument.]
And I’ll grant that some founders and many of the citizens at the time felt that this was a Christian God’s direct intervention, but it is wrong for people and Glenn Beck to discount the religious but non Christian view - esp. when there are direct quotes regarding this - or to read ‘Christian’ into the word ‘Creator’ or ‘Nature’s God’, when coming right out of the Age of Reason, those words meant something entirely different at that time.
I believe that the D of I was a ‘political’ document (and I’ve said this before, here) where it was in a sense, a ‘work of art,’ where people could read into it, from their own viewpoint of what was meant by “Nature’s God”, “Creator”, “self-evident truths” and “Nature’s Laws”. And because that aspect of it could be ‘subjective’ doesn’t mean that there are not real objective truths in the document. There are.... ‘individual rights’ being one of those and the one thing that for the first time in history (it wasn’t democracy - that had been done before ;-) that the rights of the individual was held sovereign rather the needs of the church or the state. And when we attempt to restore those truths, to overemphasize any religious aspect, imo, takes away from the more important and liberating aspect of the sovereignty of the individual.
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