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Author Topic:   Hyperbole in the Bible
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


(2)
Message 47 of 124 (640003)
11-06-2011 2:52 PM
Reply to: Message 43 by purpledawn
11-05-2011 5:16 PM


Hyperbole's Impotence Regarding the Limitations of Excess
If you call the stories about Paul hyperbole, then your definition of the word is different than mine. Perhaps we can leave things at that.

The idea that there is hyperbole in the Paul Bunyan story is not deemed so on my authority. I provided links to support that conclusion and here is another.

Pd, I’ve gotta say I’m fairly unconvinced you’re in true disagreement with NoNukes entire position regarding some examples of hyperbole discussed in previous messages. To me, hyperbole's generally a form of ironic comparison achieved through excessive - and sometimes even ridiculous, similes and metaphors. The word itself means ‘excess’.

Obviously not all literary devices employed by fictional works are meant as hyperbole. So it kinda seems to me suggesting hyperbole cannot be found in American folktales featuring Paul Bunyan & Co. is as disingenuous as attempting to cast a general shadow on certain portion's of such a tale, which aren't supposed to serve as hyperbole, as though they were.

This is what I’m seeing. The key may be in determining when seemingly exaggerative comparisons are not meant to be viewed as such. And perhaps we may gain this insight by further exploring the context of the work at hand.

I mean, no one who clearly understands Superman maintains abilities alien to the nature of a typical human would then suggest his ability to fly ’faster than a speeding bullet’ is meant as hyperbole. Even the suggestion it's meant as hyperbole detracts from the fact, within the context of the fictional narrative, Superman can indeed fly faster than any speeding bullet. He can ‘actually’ fly around the Earth so fast time reverses.

For reasons such as these, we can know that ‘faster than a speeding bullet’ is not only a poor example of hyperbole - being it’s no exaggeration; it cannot even meet the basic merits to be classified as such at all. The example of Paul Bunyan’s axe is similar in that it is not meant as hyperbole. However, when we examine the tales of Paul Bunyan such as Babe the Blue Ox, we can identify examples of hyperbole.

When we understand that Paul Bunyan is indeed a man of gigantic proportions and ‘any creature raised in Paul Bunyan's camp tended to grow’ the same, we can know his axe did indeed scar the Earth, leaving canyons in the wake at times. We can eventually learn Babe used to be a normal ox of typical size and color, as well as his conversion to becoming an incredibly massive blue ox. This is the opening of the tale ..

The 1st paragraph of Babe the Blue Ox writes:

Well now, one winter it was so cold that all the geese flew backward and all the fish moved south and even the snow turned blue.

Late at night, it got so frigid that all spoken words froze solid afore they could be heard.

People had to wait until sunup to find out what folks were talking about the night before.

These are perhaps a few of the finest examples of hyperbole one could hope for when examining the nature of such a literary device. As you’ve stated, hyperbole often takes advantage of a sense of irony to achieve a comedic effect, which is what we see; geese flyin’ backwards and fish movin’ south.

Hyperbole even appears woven into the notion it was so cold people had to wait for the sun to rise before the words from their previous nights conversation could thaw out and be heard. However, we need to understand, the snow really did turn blue due to the excessive - perhaps arctic, like conditions. And we need to read more of the story before we can actually know this, as eventually we find out the blue snow stained Babe’s coat. So then, otherwise he wouldn't be blue.

Hence the seeming exaggeration regarding blue snow turns out not to be neither excessive or hyperbole in context.

Excessive size appears as another theme written into the fiction matter of factly. I'm considering that as we determine what is and isn't hyperbole within this context, as it may limit us from classifying certain comparisons, metaphors and similes - of seemingly exaggerative proportions, as hyperbole. When we jump to the fifth paragraph we learn ..

The 5th paragraph of Babe the Blue Ox writes:

Whenever he got an itch, Babe the Blue Ox had to find a cliff to rub against, 'cause whenever he tried to rub against a tree it fell over and begged for mercy.

To whet his appetite, Babe would chew up thirty bales of hay, wire and all.

It took six men with picaroons to get all the wire out of Babe's teeth after his morning snack.

Right after that he'd eat a ton of grain for lunch and then come pestering around the cook - Sourdough Sam - begging for another snack.

The first sentence strikes us with still another example of hyperbole. Yet, now it has become apparent the idea Babe was so big he needed to scratch his itch on a cliff or a tree - obviously, isn’t it. The theme of excessive size being written into the story seems to excuse this as an example of hyperbole. We gain the sense the seemingly exaggerative metaphors, similes and comparisons of massive proportions written into the fiction are being employed to achieve different effects.

So while the context may not appear to as easily support hyperbole being found in the fact every time Babe rubbed ‘against a tree it fell over’, we can safely identify hyperbole in the notion that the tree’s took on an anthropomorphic quality as they ‘begged for mercy’ after being knocked over due to fictional Babe's actual gigantism.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s fact or fiction necessarily. Either way it seems helpful to determine to what degree certain comparisons, metaphors and similes are being exaggerated within various booklets of the bible by better understanding the specific context afforded in the literature. For example - we're to understand the Nephilim indeed were ‘the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown’ who were much larger than the average Yisraelite.

We can also recognize that - proportionately, the Yisraelites weren’t actually the size of ‘grasshoppers’ (although they apparently felt that way) - that's ridiculous, and so, hyperbole. The exaggeration exposes it because while the Nephilim were big boys, they weren’t quite that big; Paul and Babe, however, were. There appears to be another issue at work.

I get the sense at times many christians are under the impression popular bible translations convey the true essence of the original Hebrew and Greek ‘accurately enough’. The fact the original languages can be highly exaggerative, to the excess that one with a Western view may sense the appearance of deception at times, appears to be often overlooked.

Anyway, hyperbole is exaggeration for effect.

I think we’re in a better position to understand hyperbole's relation to scripture, when we understand that often the original languages, as well as hyperbole are all exaggerative by their very natures. There needs to be a clear consensus to the constraints set forth in the narrative. I offer Matisyahu 23:24 as another clear and definable example of hyperbole.

Matisyahu 23:24 writes:

You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.

There are certainly plenty more to discuss

One Love

Edited by Bailey, : repair link ..

Edited by Bailey, : grammar ..


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 43 by purpledawn, posted 11-05-2011 5:16 PM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 48 by NoNukes, posted 11-06-2011 7:10 PM Bailey has responded
 Message 51 by purpledawn, posted 11-07-2011 10:05 PM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


(1)
Message 49 of 124 (640045)
11-07-2011 2:10 AM
Reply to: Message 48 by NoNukes
11-06-2011 7:10 PM


Re: Hyperbole's Impotence Regarding the Limitations of Excess
I agree with most of your analysis. In rethinking things, I can agree that there certainly is hyperbole in the Paul Bunyan tales, but certainly not all of the extraordinary descriptions of Paul's height, weight and strength are hyperbole. The key in my opinion, is whether the seemingly exaggerated scale is intended to be taken literally or as a mere indication of bigness.

I think we’re on the same wavelength here. I’m interested to learn where PD weighs in.

quote:
You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.

Is this really hyperbole? I'd suggest not. Certainly a literary device is in use, but nobody is really claiming that any animals are being eaten or swallowed. Instead the comparison between gnat and camel is supposed to indicate how badly the Pharisees and teachers of the law had missed the mark by concentrating on relative minutia. I'd suggest that we are looking at a metaphor rather than hyperbole.

It certainly seems fair fodder for discussion.

I’m of the opinion much of the exaggeration and irony employed within depictions of Joshua’s dialogue take on a hyperbolic sense. Hyperbole operates on magnitude in different ways and, again, we find it here employing exaggeration for effect.

Like other’s within the radical prophetic traditions before him, we gain the sense they were masterfully exaggerative and ironic - consistently employing the essence of hyperbole within their language, with Joshua making apparently little exception. That said, while these things aren’t being suggested to necessarily diminish your conclusion - and quite the opposite actually, I’m suggesting metaphors and similes are compatible with hyperbole.

For example, while I may be teetering on the edge of Godwin’s Law, if I were to say ‘you may as well attend Nazi death camp’s than post in those threads’ it’s obviously a metaphor; however, there’s also such an extreme element of imagery present the hyperbole contained within becomes hard to deny (I hope that didn't earn a citation).

After all, metaphors operate successfully on analogy providing the analogy’s an appropriate one. In this sense, I’d take our original example a step further, identifying the hyperbole as being enveloped within the form of a metaphor; if you will - a metaphor operating on an analogy which is, in context, hyperbolically inappropriate in magnitude.

While this metaphor employing a sort of analogy between the comparison of straining at gnat’s and camel’s effectively expresses Joshua’s disapproval regarding the Pharisees priorities, I’d argue the extremism employed as another hint towards the presence of hyperbole. They routinely operate on ironic, extreme magnitudes and, at times, inappropriate comparisons - even at meal time, nobody is swallowing camels.

However, as you point out - meal preparations aren’t even actually being discussed, which seems to further isolate the analogy forming the plain metaphor as a failure of sorts. We find a certain sense of irony present serving as another indicator of the use of hyperbole, in the gnat - being one of the smallest critters, is removed without a problem though it should be harder to find than a camel - oh the irony, which gets left to be swallowed, as though it’s even possible.

Finally, the first will come last and the last shall be first (more hyperbole lol) - those being reprimanded aren’t actually blind. The extreme, excessive and exaggerated expression is being used to highlight their inability to successfully determine what is good, despise what is bad and accurately teach their conclusions to others (i.e. analogy).

Otherwise they could have simply been guides with ‘so-so vision' (i.e. magnitude) [< happy blind emoticon]

(which, as we understand the use of hyperbole, is more or less what they actually were)

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 48 by NoNukes, posted 11-06-2011 7:10 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 50 by NoNukes, posted 11-07-2011 9:41 AM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


(1)
Message 56 of 124 (640430)
11-09-2011 1:10 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by NoNukes
11-07-2011 9:41 AM


Re: Hyperbole's Impotence Regarding the Limitations of Excess
I hear ya NoNu. All I’ll add is considering to what degree certain comparisons, metaphors and similes within various booklets of the bible, or other works, may be exaggerated provides its own benefits. Our overall familiarity with the particular material steadily increases, as well as perhaps our ability to better discern literary technique every time we’re able to take advantage of the opportunities. Those benefits shone forth so bright, my cataracts' sunburned (xtra credit?).


Fo’ real tho, what may constitute exaggeration appears to maintain a certain degree of relativity in any given fiction, historical fiction or non-fiction. This appears to tinker with the ability to discern whether something’s to be taken literally or otherwise sometimes. Naturally, this limit to what may be considered excessive often seems easier to identify as the context of any given narrative develops, in turn assisting our determination of what's intended literally.

We’ve seen temperatures so cold ice particles take on a bluish hue, 'literally' staining the fictional fur it melts on. We’ve witnessed ‘geese flyin’ back’rds, fish movin’ south and tree’s beggin’ for mercy’. We’ve seen how a metaphor from the church testaments can assume the role of hyperbole, as well as how context may prevent the metaphor ’faster than a speeding bullet’ from accepting the role. And so it seems, as context develops, these limitations of excess appear to offer us the resources necessary to better assign a scope of magnitude towards a specific comparison, metaphor or simile.

In turn, we’re in a better position to determine when (and how) they may be serving as hyperbole or whether a function of excess may have been purposely integrated, consequently preventing a respective possibility. I think you’ll agree, until people understand Paul and Babe are anomalies - that they exist in a setting where the typical limitations of excess have been modified, they’re bound to mistake the issue that Babe uses cliffs and trees to itch as hyperbole.

Ironically, providing a theme of excess as a built-in feature of a written work may tend to prevent the practical or successful use of hyperbole, as well as the ability to recognize it. Without a clear consensus regarding the constraints set forth in a given text, many attempts to determine and discuss hyperbole almost seem doomed to beg and force their arrivals toward variant conclusions. Granted, while many won't be taking them literally, Paul, Babe and Noah still apparently all face similar challenges - it’s possible the victims are too numerous to count.

So in the end, if hyperbole operates on magnitude then it seems this magnitude may maintain relativity to the overall context of a given literary work. That said, perhaps rather than some perceiving apologies, what PD claims is hyperbole may become evident as we all sift the sands of the Flood Story through a JEDP filter. However, that’s up to her.

It seems the more we understand the overall context a particular literary work presents, the better place we’re in to make determinations. In the end, whether fiction, historical fiction, non fiction, etc., the opportunity to identify hyperbole appears to vary depending on any given lease of grandeur, as well as limitations, set forth in the context of a narrative.

Thanks for the exchange good man ..

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by NoNukes, posted 11-07-2011 9:41 AM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 57 of 124 (640432)
11-09-2011 1:45 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by purpledawn
11-07-2011 10:05 PM


How to Reduce an Eternal Gobstopper to 39 Minutes or Less ..
Yes, the grasshopper reference is a good hyperbole. As for Paul Bunyan, I provided links that deal with hyperbole in tall tales ..

I understand that hyperbole is exaggeration for effect or to make a point. As I've shown with links hyperbole can be obvious or subtle ..

We compare against our reality and all humans don't literally have evil thoughts 24/7. After the flood God still considered the humans who survived to still have the evil inclination. Mankind didn't change, and the Bible tells of righteous people ..

Yes there is a lot of exaggeration in the language, that's why we have to be careful what we deem literal. We don't seem to have difficulty recognizing the ones with the obvious format ..

Even if we perceive what’s obscure eventually, there seems to be an apparent issue with this ‘obvious’ format

For example, there’s only one of us - so far, able to recognize Noah’s age as a hyperbole of sorts which the authors allegedly intended. Similarly, NoNukes and I had to discern whether the biblical metaphor presented in my previous message constituted hyperbole. As well, some are unable - so far, to recognize the fictional snow at Paul’s house was so cold it literally turned blue or that his ox could fall trees.

As far as tall tales, I gotta say I’m surprised - you should know flashin’ a lil of Mrs.Dowling’s leg isn’t likely to get anyone a better grade in here. Meanwhile, the link you’ve provided, (delivering a 404 error) has been thoroughly addressed.

If you feel we’ve missed something she has to show us, please, reserve brevity and demonstrate in your own words. Until then I’ll linger with what has been clearly demonstrated; hyperbole is exaggeration for effect. Providing excess is a feature built into the work, it may not necessarily support the practical or successful use of hyperbole, much less foster the ability to recognize it. Ultimately, projecting a foreign setting (i.e. the context of our present reality, etc.) into a dated historical fiction may be a good way to create hyperbole in place of that which the authors originally designed.

Filtering potential hyperbole through the Documentary Hypothesis is but one way to approach scripture, and by no means a default position amongst laymen I think you’ll agree. That said, I’m not one to take issue with those approaching different texts from the ToRaH as candidates for hyperbole through the lens of late twenty first century literary criticisms, as it is what it is. Yet, how do we know the authors intended us to view their story through modern academic criticisms?

I’m thinkin’ this thread may need some sorta general consensus before any steady biblical analysis occurs. To prevent the perception of apologetics and some further confusion, may I suggest the OP be updated to request the considerations given toward hyperbole regarding the ToRaH and other relevant booklets be peered through this lens you're partial to?

Or at least, don’t play coy many people don’t share this view and that ‘til they do, they’re bound to misunderstand you.

I agree genre doesn’t preclude technique. However, we compare a given narrative against our reality when the context allows. We don’t necessarily project our reality all willy nilly like into the context of an historical fiction or fiction, just as we don’t do that with myths. When we do, we should expect bits of trouble identifying some literary techniques.

It’s been demonstrated context slowly instructs how seeming exaggerations may be revealed as neither excessive or hyperbole in context. If you disagree, simply show how context is irrelevant, or perhaps a hindrance, towards determining what may constitute as hyperbole in a given work.

All I’m sayin’ is if we’re not certain the author expects us to project our reality into the context of their writing, or worst yet - we’re certain they do, but they didn’t - the risk of missing what they intended to present to us increases. Imagine performing a literary analysis of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory this way ..

The elevator quits goin' sideways and the Ever-Lasting GobstopperTM's reduced to 39 minutes!

One Love

Edited by Bailey, : grammar ..


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by purpledawn, posted 11-07-2011 10:05 PM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 59 by purpledawn, posted 11-09-2011 4:19 PM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 77 of 124 (640560)
11-10-2011 2:25 PM
Reply to: Message 59 by purpledawn
11-09-2011 4:19 PM


Why Context and Customs are Helpful ..
quote:
It’s been demonstrated context slowly instructs how seeming exaggerations may be revealed as neither excessive or hyperbole in context. If you disagree, simply show how context is irrelevant, or perhaps a hindrance, towards determining what may constitute as hyperbole in a given work.

Actually I don't feel that anyone has. The issue with Noah's age, which I yielded on, is an odd situation due to possibly being a later addition.


Wow .. fo' realz? The issues of Babe's situation aside, have you forgotten the Superman example also?

Regardless, as it's been pointed out already, the general context of the Genesis booklet already caused you to concede at least one point of debate. We know your view of Noah's age is arrived at through higher academic criticisms, rather than the natural context of the narrative. There's nothing particularly odd about that (i.e. apology through projection, etc.).

As we've come to learn, providing a theme of excess as a built-in feature of a written work may tend to prevent the practical or successful use of hyperbole, as well as the ability to recognize it. But even if you believe the context of the narrative did not sway your change of mind, are you seriously arguing context is unable to determine how seeming exaggerations may be revealed as neither excessive in magnitude or hyperbole?

If so, please take a sec to explain why context is irrelevant towards determining hyperbole.

All I've been shown are examples of stories that contain hyperbole. These don't show me that what I've shared and not yielded on cannot be hyperbole.

I'd encourage you to reread the posts in this thread if that's all you've seen so far.

We've been discussing the role of hyperbole. Please, make sure you're eyes are open when ya do it tho cuz it works much mo' betta that way Seriously, the context of a narrative may present how something you've shared couldn't easily classify as hyperbole, providing you don't disregard it or project an alternative.

We've employed more definitive non-biblical examples to better understand how hyperbole operates, then considered how we may apply what we've learned to the more challenging texts. I'm clearly not the one providing bare links, much less have I presented any examples without the courtesy of at least a crude analysis.

You've claimed the ages in Genesis are exaggerated when compared to reality, blatantly discounting many possibilities the author may intend the reader consider as a function of the story (i.e. people used to maintain longer life spans, etc). Considering the booklets subjective nature, there may be 'lil sense in further attempting to examine potential hyperbole.

At least 'til we can properly understand the limitations of the technique.

God saw that the wickedness of mankind was great. How great was it? It was so great that their thoughts were evil 24/7.

Pd, this is nonsense I'm afraid. Yes, God saw that the wickedness of mankind was great. And how great was it? Great enough to kill everyone but a handful, so let's not put the cart before the horse ..

Rather, he saw every intention was so only evil so continually, that the wickedness of man was great in the earth.

It wasn't so great that their thoughts were consequently evil 24/7 - but rather, the evil was consequently 'so' great because their thoughts were evil 24/7. It's a distinct yet subtle difference I'd say. Intentions lead to consequences ..

I'm just kiddin' (kinda)

Honestly though, at first glance this verse appears a bit more like a simple idiom to me which gets back to being familiar with the customs of the language (i.e. 'the beginning of his strength, and, the firstborn of the bountiful harvest etc.)'.

Why believe the statements are meant to be taken as cause and effect, rather than parallel's forming a Hebrew idiom?

What in the context deems Gensis 6:5 not to be hyperbole?

Better yet - what does? Please, start showing your work .. which expression is developing the potential for hyperbole?

Genesis 6:5 writes:

The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

For example, which word do you feel's providing a sense of exaggeration we must apply the scope of magnitude to:


  • 'great' (i.e. .. wickedness of man was great ..)
  • 'every' (i.e. .. every intention ..)
  • 'only' (i.e. .. only evil ..)
  • 'continually' (i.e. .. evil continually ..)

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 59 by purpledawn, posted 11-09-2011 4:19 PM purpledawn has acknowledged this reply

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 80 of 124 (640587)
11-10-2011 7:58 PM
Reply to: Message 65 by purpledawn
11-10-2011 7:47 AM


Why Irony?
quote:
Matisyahu 23:24 writes:

You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.


Is this really hyperbole? I'd suggest not ...

I'd suggest that we are looking at a metaphor rather than hyperbole.



Interesting that you don't consider Matthew 23:24 to be a hyperbole.

You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel. Matthew 23:24

The camel and gnat are not being compared to each other. Straining out gnats or their larvae from one's drinking water was common. The camel is an exaggeration of what can be swallowed, let alone be found in one's water. Humor of the day.


If you read on, he and I took a closer look in Message 49 and Message 50 concluding it was hyperbole. In all fairness, he never actually said it wasn’t. We noticed hyperbole can exist within metaphor.

I agree the camel’s an exaggeration of what can be swallowed. Yet, I don’t see where the audience is led to believe it’s a stand up comedy routine. IMO the story doesn’t seem to indicate the speaker’s pitchin’ jokes, but rather that a sense of irony’s being employed to provoke serious thought. Perhaps even a hue of silliness to soften the blow ..

I’d argue there’s certainly comparison being made between the camel and gnat.

Apparently, there's even some evidence suggesting a pun of sorts in Aramaic between camel and gnat, or louse, from the Aramaic kalma. Regardless, as you said, straining gnats was common to the day. However, one can be swallowed relatively painlessly - the other’s a ridiculous thing to consider you could swallow without noticing. Enter, irony ..

Could someone with alleged diligence perform in their work, yet miss something so obvious?

What could possibly lead to such folly and how does one insure they avoid a similar fate?

We create metaphors when we imply a comparison between a couple different things with something substantive in common. That’s all a metaphor is really. A sense of irony develops in this comparison between a couple of critters that were common to the time and place.

Where the camel was the largest animal regularly spotted in Yisrael, in regions where the Babylonian Talmud developed the elephant seems too have been. So we find an elephant passing thru the eye of the needle in Talmudic aphorisms.

What's more recognizable becomes more relevant. Regardless, here the gnat appears as the most common smallest critter and a camel, the largest. We see a comparison made between them highlighting the magnitude of their size. The ridiculous, irony establishing the hyperbole isn’t likely to succeed without it.

The context of the story doesn’t indicate the gnats or camels are atypical, so we apply our reality and compare. This particular hyperbole/metaphor seems to present more irony to me than humor. Granted, I’d reckon just about everybody within earshot who took them Pharisees for a bunch of tools probably gotta good kick out of it, but any humor may have been lost on those reserving judgment.

I doubt the same could be said of the irony established in the ridiculous comparison.

Unless those listening were somehow unable to conjure up the images of two of the most common critter’s in their daily life to make a worthwhile comparison. Then perhaps they missed it, and simply followed with some nervous laughter ..

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 65 by purpledawn, posted 11-10-2011 7:47 AM purpledawn has acknowledged this reply

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


(1)
Message 93 of 124 (640664)
11-11-2011 1:45 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by purpledawn
10-31-2011 8:08 AM


The Kings of Exaggeration (Minus the Humor or Irony)
Many times we have examined the accuracy and inerrancy of Bible passages, but how many were simply exaggerations? Although I dislike apologetics, I would like to look at various passages considered by some to be contradictions or absolute statements and see if hyperbole comes into play.

You're conflating the two.

Exaggeration and hyperbole are similiar, not synonymous.

Hyperbole's a specific form of exaggeration producing irony, etc..

An exaggeration not producing the effects isn't hyperbole.

It's an exaggeration.

Good Kings

2 Kings 18:5 - Hezekiah trusted in the LORD, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him.
2 Kings 23:25 - Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the LORD as he did--with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses.

The above verses are simply an exaggerated way to say they were good kings. We use similar exaggerations when complementing people.

Here goes ..

I’ll take a swing at bein' pithy.

Exaggeration has been mistaken for hyperbole.

Your intent seems to be demonstrating no contradictions.

You’ve claimed both these as hyperbole to achieve the result.

The author may simply be telling us each king was one of a kind.

Hyperbole achieves humor and irony through exaggeration, for effect.

Highly exaggerated examples clearly convey the discourse goal of humor and/or irony.

Both verses employ universal negatives suggesting ‘neither before nor after’ and absolutes simply indicate excess.

Less extreme exaggeration is more effective towards providing simple over statements.

I agree these are exaggerated and disagree they’re hyperbole.

Exaggeration simply occurs when things are overstated.

Hyperbole employs obvious, intentional exaggeration.

We have no contradiction, no humor and no irony.

We’ve no evidence (i.e. effect) for hyperbole.

Just plain ol’ fashioned exaggeration.

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by purpledawn, posted 10-31-2011 8:08 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 95 by purpledawn, posted 11-11-2011 3:55 PM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


(1)
Message 94 of 124 (640665)
11-11-2011 2:15 PM
Reply to: Message 90 by Jon
11-11-2011 12:59 PM


A Better Way?
There is no formula. I cannot give you a list of rules or checks that I can use to recognize figurative language.

But when I see it, I will know I have seen it.

No methods are 100% reliable.

But when it comes to recognizing figurative language, "I'll know it when I see it" is the only method we have.

I politely disagree Jon.

Our difficulty with interpreting isn’t coincidence.

Blind faith in our ability to perceive something we’re unable to define is one way.

Learning about the author’s culture, time and place assists us in understanding their expressions.

We have a hard time with figuration in scriptures when lacking that valuable information.

It also helps to understand the purpose and limits of a given literary technique.

The more we lack, the more challenging the task.

Just ask the average christian

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 90 by Jon, posted 11-11-2011 12:59 PM Jon has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 97 by Jon, posted 11-12-2011 12:42 AM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 96 of 124 (640694)
11-11-2011 8:02 PM
Reply to: Message 95 by purpledawn
11-11-2011 3:55 PM


Re: The Kings of Exaggeration (Minus the Humor or Irony)
Honestly, no one has said all three must be present except you.

To stake your claim at least one should be evident though.

Please show any support the verse contains hyperbole.

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 95 by purpledawn, posted 11-11-2011 3:55 PM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 99 by purpledawn, posted 11-12-2011 4:27 AM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 101 of 124 (640745)
11-12-2011 12:49 PM
Reply to: Message 99 by purpledawn
11-12-2011 4:27 AM


Re: The Kings of Exaggeration (Minus the Humor or Irony)
Pd, the idea the verses contain exaggeration, rather than hyperbole, doesn't appear to effect whether or not they may be contradictory, rather than overstatements. I'm not certain, but it appears evident you're devising apologetics in an attempt to avoid a non-existent contradiction by reappropriating the given functions of established literary techniques.

Please, make a valid attempt to support your claim at some point.

I understood your conclusion to say that there is no hyperbole concerning the kings because the exaggeration contained no irony and no humor.

Irony is basically contradiction.
Hyperbole is exaggeration for effect.


I contend there's no hyperbole concerning the kings because the verses don't appear as more than simple exaggerations.

The exaggerations contain no irony or humor, and each example is without contradiction also.

Please demonstrate what constitutes the exaggerations as more than mere overstatements.

IOW, apart from Pastor Moss’ nod, what constitutes them as hyperbole?

Btw, irony and contradiction aren’t synonymous either.

Not that it matters if they were in this instance ..

Both are absent.

What I understood from that was that you feel that intentional exaggeration can only be considered hyperbole if it contains both irony and humor.

You appear to have misread, and so, misunderstood.

quote:
Highly exaggerated examples clearly convey the discourse goal of humor and/or irony.

So far we have no contradiction, humor or irony - and much less, any evidence (i.e. effect) for hyperbole from you.

Exaggerations are not defined by contradiction, irony and/or humor, but rather simple overstatements.

Hyperbole is comprised, and defined, by these very dynamics through the vehicle of exaggeration.

General overstatements indicate the tell tale signs of basic exaggeration.

Contradiction, irony and/or humor are each tell tale signs of hyperbole.

The couple examples in Kings appear to contain none of the three.

With your exception, no one’s implied all three must be present.

To stake your claim you must provide evidence of hyperbole ..

Or be satisfied that you've encountered an exaggeration.

Please provide any support the verses contain the former.

Or, conversely, you can simply retract your claim.

That's why I said hyperbole can contain contradiction, which is irony ..

If you're contending hyperbole and exaggeration are synonymous, please provide outside support for that premise.

If you're contending irony and contradiction are synonymous, please provide outside support for that premise also.

Again, whether or not you agree, exaggeration and hyperbole are similar, not synonymous.

Now, likewise, irony and contradiction possess similarities, but aren’t synonymous.

As I said, it doesn't matter if they were in this instance, since neither is present.


abe ..

I have not claimed that hyperbole must contain either or both irony and humor.

No one has and I know what you claim: these verses in Kings display hyperbole.

You proceed to refuse any demonstration as to how or why that is, apart from stating, exaggerations are common.

However, the fact exaggerations are common to find doesn't make this one hyperbole, so what allegedly does?

If your contention is that hyperbole must contain either irony or humor or both, please show outside support for that premise.

My contention is the verses don't contain hyperbole. It was supported by noting the plain exaggerations don't obviously convey any of the intended discourse goals hyperbole is known to commonly produce (i.e. contradiction, humor, irony, etc.).

Demonstrate what constitutes the exaggerations in the Kings booklet as hyperbole, apart from your declaration it's so.

Otherwise, it seems fairly obvious the verses don't display any.


In my most humble opinion, this is what you're demonstrating as a means - applying ambiguity between definitions of exaggeration, contradiction, hyperbole and irony fosters the proper environment to better misappropriate each term.

This increased opportunity to reappropriate specific literary techniques should better allow the successful misdiagnosis of any given literary work, in the same way that reappropriating interpolated doctrinal projections over specific cultural definitions captured within original hebrew and greek better allows the successful misinterpretation of scripture.

Now our end - what constitutes simple overstatements defining exaggeration as hyperbole? IOW, without any obvious intentional contradiction, humor, irony, etc., what identifies a simple overstatement - defining exaggeration, as hyperbole?

Btw, if you getta chance, please provide any support the verses contain hyperbole.

Or concede they do not

One Love

Edited by Bailey, : grammar ..

Edited by Bailey, : sp.

Edited by Bailey, : abe ..


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 99 by purpledawn, posted 11-12-2011 4:27 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 103 by purpledawn, posted 11-12-2011 4:29 PM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 102 of 124 (640757)
11-12-2011 4:09 PM
Reply to: Message 97 by Jon
11-12-2011 12:42 AM


On Studying the Bible Like Hyperb-Ali ..
All of that certainly helps us identify figurative language...

... when we see it.

lol I hear ya brother and we'll probably miss it if we pull an ostrich

Employing faith in an ability to learn hebrew culture and basic literary technique through osmosis seems a lil’ back’rd.

I kno you agree it takes effort, diligence and time, yet when we persevere in our studies we may someday be able say ...

'I'm experienced now, professional. Jaws been broke, been knocked down a couple of times, I'm bad! Been chopping trees. I done something new for this fight. I done wrestled with an alligator. That's right. I have wrestled with an alligator. I done tussled with a whale. I done handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail. That's bad! Only last week I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick! I'm so mean I make medicine sick!'
~ Muhammad Hyperb-Ali

To those that have eyes ..

One Love

Edited by Bailey, : added jazz ..


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 97 by Jon, posted 11-12-2011 12:42 AM Jon has not yet responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 104 of 124 (640760)
11-12-2011 5:27 PM
Reply to: Message 103 by purpledawn
11-12-2011 4:29 PM


Re: The Kings of Exaggeration (Minus the Humor or Irony)
I agree when you conflate exaggeration and hyperbole, the latter becomes easier to find in the bible.

You still didn't provide support that hyperbole must contain irony or humor.

Nor will I anytime soon - you're supposed to be providing support for your own arguments.

I didn't supply that implication, rather you did, and I'm not here to support your desperate and fleeting implications.

They were presented merely as examples of what hyperbole is commonly known to produce as an intended discourse goal.

The universal negative is my basis for viewing the verses as possible hyperbole. As you said, absolutes Are excess.

You have demonstrated absolutes, such as universal negatives, achieve exaggeration.

You are supposed to show the verses in Kings display hyperbole though. Oh well.

The following link contains examples considered to be hyperbole. In that list the are some that contain absolutes.

Hyperbole Examples

I have now provided support for my reasoning again.

That's a bare link and, as such, you've provided support for nothing. Please demonstrate in your own words.

When we look at the thesaurus we see that hyperbole and exaggeration are synonyms.

When we go to grammar school and then to college we learn they're similiar, yet with distiction.

lol you could have just said you're unable or unwilling to differentiate between the two

Now you too may preach how the bible's full of it

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by purpledawn, posted 11-12-2011 4:29 PM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 107 by purpledawn, posted 11-13-2011 5:44 AM Bailey has responded

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 113 of 124 (640837)
11-13-2011 4:37 PM
Reply to: Message 111 by purpledawn
11-13-2011 1:38 PM


Re: Exaggeration vs hyperbole
Yes, I read that, (wish I could read the whole thing) but Bailey claims otherwise and doesn't and won't ..

Tsk, tsk - shame on you

Please don't bear false witness sista dawn, it's not becoming ..

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 111 by purpledawn, posted 11-13-2011 1:38 PM purpledawn has acknowledged this reply

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 114 of 124 (640845)
11-13-2011 5:54 PM
Reply to: Message 107 by purpledawn
11-13-2011 5:44 AM


Re: Exaggeration vs hyperbole
Take me with a grain of salt pd - you should kno I luv ya by now.

I am so overwhemed by the wealth of information you have bestowed upon me. If you had provided any more I might have actually learned something.

Although they are synonyms, there apparently is a difference that college people are loathe to share.

So with the help of my trusty internet and waning comprehension skills, I found that basically (this means I'm not going to give a dissertaion with slides to cover every minute detail concerning the differences. I'm just covering what I see as the funamenital nature of the beast.)

Oh jeez - get down from that stauros, there's no need to crucify yourself; you know I’m a full blown metard. That said - I wasn’t trying to teach (as I often drink from your cup), but rather to maintain objectivity. In the end, there’s only one teacher.

Perhaps I was holding your feet a bit too close to the flames. My apology is forthcoming, as I'm a bit much at times

Also, lemme be fair - I understand the terms exaggeration, hyperbole and overstatement are often used interchangeably.

I just don’t perceive (from my end) how refusing to draw any distinction lends the debate an assist in this instance.

the difference is that the exaggeration used in an exaggeration is not beyond possibility, but in hyperbole it is beyond possibility.

Examples:
I'm so hungry I could eat a dozen eggs. (This is in the realm of the possible.)
I'm so hungry I could eat a horse. (Impossible.)

Unfortunately, no matter how hard I looked, I could not find anything that confirms that irony and/or humor is a necessary factor for identification in either one or in one but not the other.

Now, no one stated humor and/or irony must be developed in the expression in order to constitute hyperbole, so please, give that one a rest. In good faith, I’ll establish my position one more time to clarify ..

Exaggerations are not defined by contradiction, irony and/or humor, etc., but rather simple overstatements.

Hyperbole is often comprised, and defined, by one of these dynamics through the vehicle of exaggeration.

I noted we’ve no contradiction, humor, irony, etc., nor any evidence (i.e. effect) for hyperbole from you. My hope was you might establish an obvious intentional ‘effect’ being developed through the exaggeration. And it still is.

I never stated hyperbole cannot exist without one of the three present. They were presented as familiar examples of what hyperbole is commonly known to produce as an intended discourse goal; to be sure, others exist.

I'm not gonna shoot myself in the foot in the middle of a debate listing them though lol

I continued noting the examples you provide don't obviously convey any of the intended discourse goals hyperbole is known to commonly produce (i.e. contradiction, humor, irony, etc.), which we're familiar with.

Hyperbole is most frequently intentional and obvious exaggeration employed for effect.

And so, if contradiction, humor, irony, etc., aren’t the obviously intended effect, what is?

Universal negatives produce absolutes, but they themselves don't seem to be an effect.

And so, it seems, you wouldn’t tell me.

So given that basic difference (and I'm sure I'm wrong), IMO, the universal negatives fall in the category of impossible. Never before, never again.

An issue I see is somethings are unique and uncomparable to what comes before and after, rendering uni neg's 'possible'.

Anyway, in the end, I disagree with your conclusion, although I appreciate your position and the effort you’ve put into it.

Generally, I consider hyperbole to be something which may be difficult to take literally. It appears the examples in our Kings booklets may easily be when we consider the author to be stating each king as one of a kind as we've agreed.

As an example, is this hyperbole:

quote:
The four corners of Mount Rushmore laid the foundation of hope in the Lord, the God of America, there was not one like it among all the mountains of earth, either before it or after it.

In providing this example, I'm not suggesting hyperbole can never be taken literally, but rather it is exaggeration for effect.

As such, there should be an obvious intentional effect visible with the kings, so what's the effect of the exaggeration?

Besides fruitful debate

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 107 by purpledawn, posted 11-13-2011 5:44 AM purpledawn has acknowledged this reply

  
Bailey
Member (Idle past 3357 days)
Posts: 574
From: Earth
Joined: 08-24-2003


Message 115 of 124 (640848)
11-13-2011 6:11 PM
Reply to: Message 112 by NoNukes
11-13-2011 2:04 PM


Re: Exaggeration vs hyperbole
Is the distinction between hypebole and exaggeration really all that important?

Perhaps as a matter of debate and semantics, but otherwise I think not. To defend allegations of biblical contradiction, it seems one can suggest equally whether exaggeration or hyperbole is at play lending an appearance of mutual exclusivity.

One Love


I'm not here to mock or condemn what you believe, tho my intentions are no less than to tickle your thinker.
If those in first century CE had known what these words mean ... 'I want and desire mercy, not sacrifice'
They surely would not have murdered the innocent; why trust what I say, when you can learn for yourself?
Think for yourself.

Mercy Trumps Judgement,
Love Weary


This message is a reply to:
 Message 112 by NoNukes, posted 11-13-2011 2:04 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
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