We should keep in mind that the term "sin" derived initially from one of the gods whose epithet was Sin. As the myth goes, he unsuccessfully defied authority and was put back in his place by Ninurta. Sin and Ninurta were better known as Thoth and Geb in Egypt. Of course Thoth became one of the most renowned and respected gods, so he was evidently forgiven for his youthful trangression. The name of this "moon god" Sin was only later generalized as a moral fault or condition.
Mankind was said to have been "conceived in sin", but more accurately brought into existence by the creative and perhaps unauthorized works of Ea/Ptah and his assistant Sin/Thoth. A "burden of "sin" was therefore placed upon the human race, not only due to the "rebellious" actions of Sin and Ea, but in order to "shame" the "illegimate offspring" into accepting a lower and therefore an exploitable position. Such is the origin of the caste sytem. The new people were essentially the same as their so-called creators, but were expected to serve and even die for them. They were made to feel inferior to them by means of a stigma attached to their birth and by the withholding of knowledge. This turned out to be a very clever and effective strategy. It is still in use to this very day in its various and nefarious forms.
Ironically, those who resist exploitation in this cultural model established in the time of the gods are called sinners by those who profit from exploiting them!
So, we see that guilt is one of the most prevalent control methods. However, it was not mankind but their gods who fell from grace and into greed. And being made "in their image" we perpetuate the tradition. Where will it stop? Probably only with catastrophe and destruction. Such is the natural cleansing cycle in a perverse Universe.
"We will continue to be primitive until we understand the primitive."
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© Charles N. Pope, US Library of Congress. All rights reserved.