Sunday, December 25, 2016

Nassim Nicholas Taleb — No, Jesus was not a “NonWhite” refugee who would have voted for …


Setting the record straight. Taleb distinguishes Mediterranean peoples from interior peoples.  So Southern Europeans are differentiated from Northern Europeans, Near Easterners from Middle Easterners, and Mediterranean Africans from non-Mediteranean Africans. 

These are increasingly important distinctions now that ethnicity is coming to the fore in the world as political parameter.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb's blog

14 comments:

Matt Franko said...

"Jesus was from Nazareth (close to Tyre, actually many parts of Galilee were owned by Phoenician kings); his parent went Judea so he could be born there;"

So what designated your "ethnicity" was not where you were born but rather under which ethnicin (nation) your parents were subject... no "anchor babies"...

Tom I agree this "ethnic" trend is real but they are looking at fleshly/biological criteria rather than a legal (non material) criteria... I don't see that moving the ball forward ultimately...

Matt Franko said...

"Ethnic" (Greek ethnicin) is a lawful designation not a biological designation....

Tom Hickey said...

Americans at least have a fuzzy idea of the Middle East and don't distinguish it from the Near East. Very few realize that Mediterranean peoples are a single ethnic group.

What Taleb doesn't mention is that there is an ethic division between Northern and Southern (Mediteranean) Europeans. My Father's family was Irish. Before I was born one of my fathers older sisters chose to marry an Italian. I was later told that the uproar was like the daughter of a Southern plantation owner waiting to marry a "darkie." Even when I was growing up, Mediterraneans were regarded as "other." Actually, the family absolutely loved the guy once they got to know him, of course. And now the difference between Northern and Southern Europeans is pretty a thing of the past in America, as least as far as I can see.

BTW, for many people that react to difference in skin color, it is not so much physical appearance as difference in culture. When people assimilate into the culture, differences are either not noticed or hardly noticed. This is obviously an issue for those who want to preserve their ethnicity and not-assimilate.

For others, genetic purity is a top priority.

Now that the right is set on breaking down the political correctness associated with this, I think we are going to see it emerge as a visible factor rather than being operative from the closet.

Again, perception is reality. There is only one race, the human race. Perception of divisions and their significance changes culturally and historically.

Matt Franko said...

One human race but with numerous nations each with their own legal authorities (including numismatic authority) .... this is what 'ethnicin' means in the Greek scriptures...

Rote: "stand aloof from stupid questioning and genealogies" Titus 3:9

John said...

There are people have lived in Palestine and who can trace their history back to the time of Jesus and before. They're called Palestinians, and they either stayed Jews or became Christians or Muslims. A small minority stayed Jewish. A bigger minority became Christian. While the vast majority became Muslim.

All of which is to say, Jesus looked more or less like Nassem Nicholas Taleb: dark hair, dark eyes, tanned, etc. You can prove a lot with DNA, and archaeologists and biologists have shown that the inhabitants of Palestine at the time of Jesus look pretty much similar to the people who live their now. We can map a good deal of the world's past "ethnic" inhabitants through DNA. Give it another twenty years and we'll have done just that, to the chagrin of all the racists who believe in ethnic purity and all that other garbage. No doubt, it'll be called "Jewish" science or "politically correct" science. It's just science. Some will always hate science because, as someone once said of the truth, it will set you free: humans are nothing more than apes with brains wired in such a way as to give us the world we see.

Matt Franko said...

What he looked like is not revealed so hence it is NOT important to know....

John said...

It's not important to me. My issue is with those who claim that Jesus either looked like a northern European or could not possibly have resembled the people who now inhabit what was then Palestine. Consciously or not, they're making a racial issue out of it.

And since they're the ones raising the issue, those who take science seriously can respond with the genetic evidence that is now able to trace population movements and therefore the ethnic demographic makeup of the world as it was. To wit, Jesus would have looked like the native population: a man with dark hair, dark eyes and dark skin. Given the lack of obesity in such societies, he would also have been very slim, even thin, and of short to average height.

And in any case, I should have thought a strapping six foot blue eyed blonde man (of the western imagination as can be seen in stained glass windows in many churches) would have been mentioned in the Gospels or elsewhere. Looking utterly different to the native population as he allegedly have been would have aroused some comment. Chinese Christians have depicted Jesus looking Chinese. All quite natural. But that isn't to say that it is true. People imagine that Jesus looked like them. Why they find it so hard to imagine that he looked like someone else is for them to come to terms with.

Matt Franko said...

Why go thru all of that just read Titus 3:9. I posted above.... if you are Christian....

Malmo's Ghost said...

John. Merry Christmas. Jesus' looks don't matter like Matt said. Ask the founders of Princeton for elucidation on why it is so.

As an aside, race is a real thing and it matters...a lot! And it always will matter to each and every race because that wing of identity ideologues of all stripes will never let it die. Never.

Bob said...

Jesus was George Michael's double.

WillORNG said...

Matt wasn't the genealogies thing a dig at those clinging to Jewish Old Testament culture?

What about the odd gospel genealogies?

John said...

Malmo, where have you been? You've been missed. The Trump era has begun, and Malmo the visionary disappeared. To tatooine no doubt for further instruction? A belated Merry Christmas to you too. Happy New Year to you all though.

Race has no basis in fact in science. In evolutionary terms, there is one race: the human race. Everything that we claim "racial" is in fact geographical. There are geographical differences in appearance (skin colour being the most obvious), but no racial differences in the way evolutionary biology understands the term.

Matt, there's that shifty character Paul again! He's making a semi-interesting point, but what's behind it? The shift away, as ever, from Mosaic law. And what is the definition of a "foolish controversy"? After all, some one might say that moving away from Mosaic law or the second amendment or prohibition of torture is anything but a "quarrel about the law".

"When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things."

John said...

Bob, no reason not to speak ill of the dead. George Michael was a bloody awful musician.

One thing's for sure, Jesus would have been better looking and wouldn't have bored the world with his unbelievably vapid life.

Bob said...

I thought George Michael was a sex symbol. Oh well...