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Is it dishonorable to steal, lie, or cheat someone who is not of your folk?
Yes 50%  50%  [ 2 ]
No 50%  50%  [ 2 ]
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Joined: Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:57 am
Posts: 25
Could being the antithesis of virtuosity actually be honorable when used on people not of your kith and kin?
What do you think about the statement, "It is better to steal than accept charity?"


Fri Sep 15, 2017 1:11 am
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Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:35 am
Posts: 561
Personally, I'm just not the kind of person who can steal and lie and cheat against others who have never done me any wrong. Cross me, and I may consider it a breach of honour, in which case I owe the offender none.
Now, I'm not saying that there may never be a situation in which we must act in a way that is less than honourable in order to survive, and certainly it is a worse offence to commit dishonorable acts against your own folk, particularly your kith and kin.
Do I really owe honour to those who are not my folk? Eh, probably not, but I still wouldn't feel right about it. And there is such a thing as guest right or hospitality. If you welcome a stranger into your home or vice versa, then to steal or lie or cheat would be dishonourable.
We are not beasts who act without conscience. We possess the ability to reason and to consider our choices carefully before acting. So why then would you inflict harm upon someone who doesn't deserve it? Would you steal from an old woman with barely enough to live on? Would you cheat an old man who's worked his whole life, wearing himself to the bone, and has naught to show for it but a meager pension? Would you steal money from a mother when that little she had was all she had to feed her children? Would you deceive a kindly man who had only wanted to help? And would you think nothing of it, only because these people are not your folk, your kith and kin? And if they were Arabs, or Jews, or Asians, or Africans... Does that make it OK, when perhaps you could simply have accepted charity from one who had more than enough to spare? Is stealing somehow more noble than accepting an offer from a stranger to share the food off their table? And if you find it disgraceful in some way to accept charity, well what about this: "A gift for a gift." If someone shows you an act of generosity, then do something for them. A gift does not come with a price tag. Just because your gift cannot be so grand as the one you received, is it not all the more generous of you to give at all when you had so little to give?
Many will surely argue that such acts must be acceptable, because the gods have also committed similar deeds. But I'll make two points on this:
1. Are the gods beyond reproach, and must we emulate all the actions of one whom we deem greater than ourselves, without considering those deeds. Are we not to know our own minds, but rather follow blindly?
2. How can we be sure that the lore has not been tainted to stain the characters of those gods we revere? Are we so sure that the gods resorted to thievery and treachery against those who had done them no wrong, only to get their way? Since when do we uphold envy, greed, lust and selfishness as virtues? If those are to be considered virtuous conditions, then by what right does Odin punish the Svartálfar for their ill treatment of men, or the jotuns for their trespasses, or Loki? Why is he not revered for his treachery? After all, the Aesir are not of his blood.
Is it "Might is Right"?


Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:26 am
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Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2014 6:39 pm
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I agree with Fand on this.

From my perspective, during the time the Edda's were committed to paper, the Viking way was to steal and take what they wanted - but that was what society did during that period. And it wasn't only the Viking who did so. Many societies including the Christians, Muslims, Asians, Russ, took what they deemed was rightfully theirs and what they considered to bring them luck or much gold or silver. Therefore, the words to steal rather than beg would hold true.

However, I do not see that this statement, taken on face value, holds credence for us now given that the world we live in is decadent and abundant in whatever you would want. To steal is disrespectful and, in my opinion, dishonourable. Honour is held in providing for yourself through honourable means - whether working a small holding, working in the city for yourself or someone else. To steal from someone else, no matter how rich or poor they are, is dishonurable.

Stormr


Fri Sep 15, 2017 11:46 pm
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:07 am
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Stealing gets me what I wat at the price of becoming someone I do not respect. One can say the same of charity. One has to weigh off the two.

For example, I have decided I will have nothing to do with the ACA if ever I return to the States. An example of fortitude is what people there need now. No one has a right to good health; he has a duty, though, to bear with what the Norns serve up.


Sun Sep 17, 2017 11:28 am
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Joined: Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:57 am
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In the society that I live in, illegal immigrants steal from the entire country. Corporations steal from everyone. The government steals our tax dollars upon threat of violence and uses it in ways that does not benefit me or my neighbors. The police steal by writing tickets for a cow that is loose in a drug infested neighborhood - citing public safety concerns, meanwhile knowing where drug houses are and doing nothing about them. The police write a person a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt (an individual choice and consequence) while there are school busses filled with children and said busses are not even equipped with seat belts. Middle Easterners running gas stations and profiting off of us without having to pay taxes. Hell, I had some deer come and steal some food from my garden and a fox stole one of my chickens (and now i am going to steal his life).
I once believed that stealing was flat out dishonorable. Now I believe that I would be weak if I were not to allow myself to do it. I believe that stealing from my kindred or my family is dishonorable. Stealing from a neighbor is unwise. Beyond that, I ask myself "WWJD" or "What Would Jarl Do"? (hah).
Why would I allow myself to be subjugated by corporations and governments? I'm not a slave. I don't go around looking for an opportunity to steal, but I am not going to go without. I will do what needs to be done, like any free man would do. Am I less of a man than the president who covets another countrys natural resources and starts a war to claim them? At least I don't have to make up a lie to cover my reason for thievery. I just won't get caught and if I was, I would put up a fight to get away.
Going too long without taking action like stealing, fighting, etc brews weakness in my opinion. A guy screwed me over years ago on some money, so the other day I walked up in his yard and stole 5 watermelons (after a few years of letting it go). I wanted some watermelon and I didn't have any money and hadn't stolen anything in 3 years. It felt good to leave without getting shot. ;) Call me dishonorable. Just don't call me that to my face.


Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:53 am
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Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 6:35 am
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Big Country, I take the attitude that if someone has wronged me in some way, like cheating me, stealing from me, etc, then I'd feel no remorse for taking what I want from them. Steal from the corporations. The way I see it, the owe us. Lie, cheat or whatever you have to do to get out of paying taxes, and take what you can get from the government, because the stole all they have from the people in the first place. And never kneel to anyone. Kneeling is for slaves. Fight if you need to fight. If there are no enemies worth fighting, get some practice from sports, boxing or martial arts or something.
But stealing indiscriminately, like from the weak, the elderly, the innocent, I cannot do. Now, outsiders who have trespassed and taken advantage of the hospitality of my folk, well, you reap what you sow.


Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:24 am
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:07 am
Posts: 104
The question is a bit lacking in nuance. I can see lying as tactically advisable in any number of circumstances. On the other hand, I could not very well imagine myself selling, say, defective goods to strangers on the grounds, "They ain't kin."


Sat Sep 23, 2017 11:04 am
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Wotan's Late Harvest wrote:
The question is a bit lacking in nuance. I can see lying as tactically advisable in any number of circumstances. On the other hand, I could not very well imagine myself selling, say, defective goods to strangers on the grounds, "They ain't kin."

Agreed, there is no honour in this.

Fand wrote:
Big Country, I take the attitude that if someone has wronged me in some way, like cheating me, stealing from me, etc, then I'd feel no remorse for taking what I want from them. Steal from the corporations. The way I see it, the owe us. Lie, cheat or whatever you have to do to get out of paying taxes, and take what you can get from the government, because the stole all they have from the people in the first place. And never kneel to anyone. Kneeling is for slaves. Fight if you need to fight. If there are no enemies worth fighting, get some practice from sports, boxing or martial arts or something.
But stealing indiscriminately, like from the weak, the elderly, the innocent, I cannot do. Now, outsiders who have trespassed and taken advantage of the hospitality of my folk, well, you reap what you sow.

If people cheat, steal or wrong me I will not lower myself to their level. They no longer exist.
Stealing from corporations - just don't support them, again there is no honour in stealing from them.
Paying taxes - there are some evils in this world that cannot be avoided however given best efforts they can be minimised
Kneel to no-one - agreed.
Teach your kin to fight and teach your children to fight - bare knuckles or via a sport. These are things we were designed to do but the world has become weak. Let us remain strong.
Outsiders ... now that is a different story. As you say, reap what you sow.


Sat Sep 23, 2017 12:46 pm
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Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:18 am
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Wotan's Late Harvest wrote:
The question is a bit lacking in nuance. I can see lying as tactically advisable in any number of circumstances. On the other hand, I could not very well imagine myself selling, say, defective goods to strangers on the grounds, "They ain't kin."

Agreed. I value hospitality, but I would not hesitate to kill a cockroach. Humans, on the other hand, are complex. We need to be complex to adapt and survive.
8. Happy is he who hath won him the love and liking of all; for hard it is one's help to seek from the mind of another man.
9. Happy is he who hath won him both winning ways and wisdom; for ill led is oft who asketh help from the wit and words of another.
r


Thu Sep 28, 2017 1:13 am
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