Ignorance is fine, it keeps some smiling. And those who smile from it are okay by me. However, those who condemn others by it, very much, scare me. Take for example the biblical story of Samson. One can say that there are three attitudes towards this Old Testament story.
The first sees Samson as an actual event in history and to think otherwise is blasphemous.
The second type see the story as a lie, an old story told to keep a tribe of people scared so they would be obedient to their leaders. These people are sometimes atheist, but more times than not, power-hungry/greedy bastards who want to rule the world by pretending to believe to get your vote.
The third type are you and me, Truth Seekers and Lovers of Light. This essay is for you.
We look to the facts that the primitive people who told the old bible stories, were familiar with their own feelings, but knew little else. So they explained everything in nature by projecting themselves mentally upon it, by personification. The stones, the trees, the hills, the earth, the clouds, etc., were all real to them, not figurative. If a single person related a story of an isolated event to one of the other tribe members, it would soon be lost, but if this person related it to the natural world, it would live on.
Chief among these stories were the ones connected with the sun, and such an all powerful heavenly body as this could but be represented as a God.
When his father has gone to rest, Sun God is born and goes forth to fight with Storm and Darkness and make Earth fruitful. He has many amorous frolics with the Dawn Maidens and many midnight escapades with the Evening Twilight Goddesses. He is mighty in his own strength and slays his enemies. After victory he retreats and sinks to rest or dies. Something like this was used to explain the solar year.
The name Samson, according to the best etymologists, is most clearly derived from the Hebrew word shemesh, meaning sun. So, from shemesh, sun, we have Shims-on, the Sun God.
These last events are the ones of all to fasten the solar character of Samson. His strength is in his long hair — the rays of the sun; while he sleeps, in the winter, or at night, or when covered by the storm cloud, the rays are cut off. His enemies, the Gods of winter, darkness or storms, put out his eyes and laugh at his helplessness. There is a touch of sublimity about the scene of his death. He goes down between two pillars amidst the general destruction of his enemies; by one sun’s death a new one is born, which destroys completely the opposing forces of cold and darkness. Hercules also had to do with two pillars; he sets them up at the mouth of the Mediterranean, those world-famed rocks of Gibraltar.
Many minor points of symbolism have been omitted in this brief survey of the narrative, and in those given, there is ample opportunity for shades of distinction to be pointed out by differently constituted minds; for in such interpretations there can be no iron-clad rules to follow. But the atmosphere of mythology enveloping the story is so oppressive, that no one, who has the least susceptibility to its influence can resist it for a moment. Only such as cannot distinguish between accurate history and mythology at all, or are completely stunted by theological preconceptions, will fail to respond to such overwhelming case as this.