Leviticus (Redacted)

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Everybody knows all about Leviticus. In fact, most of us are sick to death of the old boy. According to this ancient sheep-herder, it is an abomination for a man to lie with man like a woman. Fundamentalists particularly like this one: they even tattoo the verse on their arms. Which is ironic, of course, since Leviticus thought tattoos were an abomination, as well. Irony is, sadly, wasted on bigots.

Leviticus went on to condemn the eating of bacon and shrimps on the barbie; football was also not on the to do list (touching the skin of a pig being a sin). You can find the whole list here if you are so inclined. Some of it is pretty good advice, I think, such as the prohibition of selling your daughter into prostitution. Just good parenting, I say, but it must have been a fairly common practice if it rates a verse or two in the Bible. Hmmm, makes you wonder why the other stuff got a mention, too. Others are a bit tough, like not mixing two fabrics in clothing – Walmart is clearly a den of iniquity.

Recently, an archeological dig in the Levant turned up some ancient scrolls that included even more things that Leviticus found abominable. I’m happy to share them with you – the first time they’ve appeared in English.

It is an abomination to listen to the advice of your mother-in-law. According to the notes, this almost made the cut; it took a threat from Leviticus’s wife not to lie with him like a woman to keep it out.

Leviticus also included some positive admonishments in his redacted verses.

Glorious is the woman who gives her husband a pedicure.

She will be blessed who kisses the feet of her husband.

The feet of the weary man is a badge of honour in his faithfulness to God. It is not clear what this last one even means other than Leviticus seems to have had something of foot fetish.

Mockery as you know was big on the list of admonitions. No mocking of God and so on. Apparently he also included a prohibition of mocking Leviticus but his editor – the Big Guy – removed it as being too meta. I guess I can be thankful for this. Most people already think I’m going to burn; I’d hate to do it on a mocking –Leviticus rap.

But wait there’s more. Leviticus forbade the eating of insects with four legs unless they be jointed. Leviticus was clearly not an entomologist – insects all have six legs, jointed or not. Perhaps he was thinking of spiders who had been injured in the war. In the redacted version, Leviticus also forbade the eating of jalapenos (too hot), ice cream (too cold) and porridge (just right). Leviticus was well known for his culinary prescience.

I realize that I’ve probably pissed off my fundamentalist friends (sorry Jim-Bob) but sometimes I am overwhelmed with the need to be sarcastic – also an abomination in Leviticus’s eyes.

All I can say is Thank Heaven, I don’t believe in Hell.

But that’s ten minutes.

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