An American man has brought a wrongful dismissal suit over his former employer's attempt to make him wear the number of the beast - in the guise of a safety record sticker. Billy E Hyatt alleges that he was fired from the Pliant Corp plastics factory in northern Georgia for refusing to wear a sticker declaring the factory had …
666 or 616?
According to the oldest copy of the book of Revelations (~1700 yo) the number of the beast is 616. So the poor chap was already damned to eternal hell 50 days previously!
That's what I'd thought, too.
And I heard it on an NPR podcast, and they are NEVER wrong.
In the original text it's not actually written as "666" but as something like νρων κσρ in greek or, in modern hebrew letters, נרון קשר.
This is because, in those days, there was no separate numerical system and both cultures used letters of the alphabet as numbers, adding up various letters until the required total is reached (which is part of the logic behind numerology-based mystery cults like Kabbalah and so forth). A modern equivalent might use A as 1, B as 2 all the way up to J as 9, then K as 10, L as 100, M as 1000 and so forth.
The smart amongst you may have already noticed that the letters above spell "nron ksr" and "nrwn qsr" respectively. When the book of Revelation was written, it was done so in greek, as any literate writer in Israel of the day would have known Greek as well as Aramaic and old Hebrew. The writer may have written in Greek, however he was still thinking in Aramaic and wrote the name "nero ceasar" (or neron kaiser as it would have been in literate circles there, as they all spoke Greek rather than Latin), transliterated from aramaic to greek, as the "number of the beast". Aramaic, like Hebrew and most other semitic languages has no vowels, so the result would be the equivalent of NRWN QSR. With the transition to hindu-arabic numerals the transliteration lost its meaning and the total number was rendered simply as "666".
In some translations from greek to latin a mistake was made by the translator, who assumed that the text should say NRW QSR, resulting in some later texts having the number add up to 616.
So, to end it all, the whole "number of the beast" thing is actually a bit of historical curiosity now rather than a fundamental element of identification of some future "antichrist" figure. It's worth remembering that there is no mention of a single man named "antichrist" in the entire book of revelation. The entire book refers to events that took place around 69 AD, when the romans laid seige to Jerusalem. The beast of the sea was Nero, the beast of the land was the Jewish religious hierarchy, the "harlot" was that same hierarchy, the weeping merchants were the Jewish people and foreigners who traded in Jerusalem as it stood on the crossroads between east and west and so on and so forth. Those "end times" referred to throughout the new testament were a reference to the eventual sack of Jerusalem and the annexation of Israel as part of the Roman Empire, something anyone with a bit of foresight and brain could have predicted if they paid attention to the political motions of the day.
Basically the entire book refers to events in the past. It's over. Finito. Finished. We're living after the end of the book.
But what about 'XL' the T-Shirt Size of the Beast or 'Cotton' the Breathe-able Natural Fiber Really Quite Suitable For a Variety of Climatic Conditions of the Beast ?
Finally someone who puts some sense in Christian Mythology.
I am not a Nihilist, in fact I am baptized christian by choice- but I really have a hard time with fundamentalists of any color who do not care to get the facts and have no sense for of the spiritual side of things.
They rather take unreflected everything as truth that is written down and hand themselves cowardly to whatever authority claims to own that truth. If that's not 100% materialistic, lacking every spark of spirituality.
And worse, they fight everyone who choose to disagree without an inch of tolerance...
Aye, so much of the bible makes a lot more sense with even a little understanding of the cultural milieu it was written in.
666 is not the number of the beast! Like most things in the bible its wrong...
Like most things NOT in the bible
but believed to be there by self-claimed X-ians who are not half as pious as they would like to beleive (for if they were, they would have bothered to read the &^#^$% Bible!)
Surely the boss could just have him sectioned (or the american equivalent) thus saving all this hassle?
May I be the first to point out ...
... that not all of us Left-Pondians are completely whacked-out religious nutters? Most of us are actually sane. Really.
Now if we could only get the masses to vote ...
Get the masses to vote?
You could argue, with the help of some adult beverage, that that's where things went wrong.
Everyone tells us to be tolerant, but I've never understood why I should tolerate such complete, utter, manic, raging, rot-inducing idiocy. Then again, that seems to be the most common state of humanity.
Isn't the number actually 616?
Number of the Beast-No it aint.
I do wish these sky fairy merchants would occasionally get their facts right. The NOB is not, as explained by the erudite Mr Stephen Fry, 666. More like 620 or thereabouts, though my memory fails to extract the definitive result.
Not sure if this minor inaccuracy deserves sacking though.
If I recall my QI correctly
(and its more reliable than Wikipedia you know)
Isn't 666 the wrong number anyway?
That said, some people really are numpties.
Leaving aside this man's religious beliefs, what kind of employer makes you wear a sticker that says how many days there have been since the last accident? If it's worth noting at all, surely a poster on the wall would be better?
It seems like the sort of thing you'd do with kids who have to wear bike helmets all the time, even on their short bus.
Then again, given this employee's reaction, ...
What kind of employer
One who can "voice the opinion that Hyatt's beliefs were ridiculous" without a hint of self-awareness?
One who does, as you put it, "leave aside this man's religious beliefs"?
Or, most likely, one who was looking for an excuse to sack him anyway.
Employer is a nutcase
The employer is asking for it really, isn't he. And why 666? Why not 600?
If I worked for them I'd go to the first aid room with a paper cut, insisting it be logged. On day 665, after the stickers had been printed, and I'd been asked to unbox them.. you see where this is going.... the irony would make it all worth while.
Obviously doesn't keep up with his claptrap - the mark of the beast has been updated to 616, referring to Caligula, I believe.
Meaning, of course, that for quite a long time religious nuts have been using Satan's mark quite happily, condemning themselves to hell. I can't help but smile. :-)
If he's such a sincere believer...
Why is he working for a company and collecting wages when he should be dedicating himself to the work his Saviour recommended: feeding the poor, looking after the widow and orphan, visiting those in prison, helping people out who need help, laying down his life for others?
Oh, I guess that would be walking the walk. So much more fun to get hung up on the superstitious, mumbo-jumbo bit of your religion and enjoy feeling outraged.
Or he could just be very, very thick.
"Or he could just be very, very thick."
my instincts say to go with that one.
Or he could just be very, very thick
unskilled worker in a plastics factory?
man must have been a genius!
I worked with this guy once
You should have seen the kerfuffle that happened when I had Iron Maiden on the radio.
Walking the walk?
Tricky thing, helping out the less fortunate if you don't have your own home and income. Cos, you know, you'd *be* one of the less fortunate at that point. How do you feed the poor if you can't afford food? Or the land on which to grow it?
The fact the guy is credulous and a bit daft is reason enough to mock him. So what does your complete failure to understand economics or charity say about you?
Credulous and daft
If the guy was credulous and daft, I would not mock him. If he were just a simple soul who'd swallowed the whole thing, fuzzy supertitious bits and all, i would pity him. But he was shrewd enough to sue his employer. Nothing like money to sharpen a man's wits. I curl my lip at him not because he is a simple believer, but because he's a canting hypocrite.
When he felt frightened and oppressed, he was supposed to turn the other cheek. What do you think that means? When hurt, humiliated, put into distress, a Christian accepts it joyfully as a way to walk the walk his Saviour set for him and the one He demonstrated. Though wearing the nunber of the beast (although completely out of context), he would have held fast to his faith and trusted his God.
Or can you find somewhere that Jesus said 'Sue the socks off the b*st*rd, matey, get loads of dosh: that's My teaching in a nutshell.'
re: If he's such a sincere believer...
He could have arranged an "accident" on day 665.
Works for Monks.
Granted they need to eat and somewhere to keep the rain off, but they don't exactly have many needs.
Why not start a religion that states *all* numbers and letters are evil, and then claim that any work given to your by your employer is against your religious faith, and then sue them?
There are days when I wonder if the government-run education system is run by a cult like that. Certainly some of the teachers I know are card-carrying members. (No names or numbers, just sparkly pictures.)
Why not start a religion that states *all* numbers and letters are evil
and when you get your personal heavenspace assigned... you find sarah palin is there and has been for years
Why not start a religion.......
Go on then..........
Ah, but how are you going to get the word out about your religion, and more to the point, how can you publish your religious tenets if numbers and letters are evil??? Maybe with punctuation marks, unless they evil as well?
Not much of a fanatic
A real religious nutcase would have voluntarily had an industrial accident on day #665, just to stick it to the boss.
A nail related incident would have been very appropriate?
>>Not much of a fanatic → #
>>In Man sues boss for 'condemning him to eternal damnation'
>>A real religious nutcase would have voluntarily had an industrial accident on day #665, just to stick it to the boss.
a sensible religious nutcase would have organised an industrial accident for his boss. involving nails, or a crown of thorns, or something :)
If he chose to have it, it wouldn't have been an accident.
There's one born every minute...
I thought that 666 was a mistranslation and 616 was the actual (scientifically proven) beast's number. So according to the religious nut-job in question, he was already condemned to eternal hellfire 50 days earlier. So there.
'...the actual (scientifically proven) beast's number.'
It's been scientifically proven that there is a beast and what its number is?
According to the gospel of QI...
I though our saviour Stephen Fry had established that the number of the beast was 616, and 666 was a 2000 (ish) year old typo?
He's obviously a nut case.
^title says it all
Jumping on the 616 bandwagon...
Let me add like everyone else has that the oldest versions of revelations had the number as 616.
Let me also add that this would have been a front-page bile-spewer in The Daily Fail if this had happened in the UK.
"Another Christian persecuted for beliefs!"
...where he'd be pictured glum-faced with his copy of the Bible and his wife and dogs. The sub-text would then go on about how different it would have been if he'd been Islamic or gay and would then try to wangle in something about peadophilia and secularists.
Why didn't he just
have an accident in the workplace? Probably less painful than eternal damnation (though there is some doubt, I guess).
I believe Hell is not even mentioned in The Bible which will further harm his already ludicrous case.
Ah, sweet irony
Ah, but Lord Google teaches us that just because you believe in something doesn't make it true.
Except that, those are translations (mostly from Greek), and some of those uses aren't quite as clear-cut as they seem, when you start looking at the actual words and context.
It would be even weirder if "Hell" (not one of the many towns) was mentioned unambiguously.
Just not as a place human souls are sent to. Or a place Satan is lord of.
As I read it, Hell is basically a big volcano Satan was cast into to punish him for vanity.
Didn't Ron Hubbard do something about castings into a big volcano too?
Area Code 616
Is in Michigan, specifically Grand Rapids.
Insert your own punchline here.
666 is more like the number of commentators who'll point out it should actually be 616
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