The Ten Commandments

Moral imperatives provided to the masses to help them live a better life or ten rules that you don't need to break for retribution of biblical proportions. The ULTIMATE top ten: The Ten Commandments...

Just The Facts

  1. Depending on your faith, there are actually more than ten commandments but they were refined down to just the top ten things you need or need not do.
  2. The epic movie starring Charlton Heston has been shown on ABC the Saturday before Easter for more than the last two decades.
  3. In the "cast of thousands" for the movie, famed trumpeter Herb Alpert and televison and movie actors Robert Vaughn and Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer had bit parts.

When a booming voice saying "CUT IT OUT!" just isn't enough...

As the story goes, a young man named Moses, born of Hebrew descent but raised among Egyptian royalty as a prince was given the memo that he was actually Hebrew and realizing that Egytpians were really jerks that were enslaving his people, Moses steps up and admits who he is before they cast him out of Egypt and have him wandering in the desert. But Moses eventually starts a new life herding sheep at the foot of this huge mountain and when he gets an urge to climb it one day, he comes across a burning bush, which is actually God speaking to him and the two have a very crucial chat.

When you see a bush burning at the top of a mountain in the middle of a desert that talks, you sit down and listen to what it has to say. Nuff said.

God is not liking that the Hebrew people were enslaved by the Egyptians and he told Moses to go break 'em out and after a little stubborness on the Egyptians part that forced Moses to lay the smack down via the Almighty, Moses and his peeps were on their way. But in a time when there were no real laws or even any real guidelines on how to live properly and not...you know...be a lecherous, sinning scumbag, God was two steps ahead and he bestowed upon Moses the very principles that all people should live by so the world that he gave us wouldn't get all mucked up. So many years later, let's take a look at those commandments, how we're doing on following them and if need be how ol' Charlton would've handled it.

He parted a sea for them and they still need proof? Got a brand new word I just created. "Ingrate".

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS!

Commandment #10: Do Not Covet Your Neighbor's Goods

In the past, Ezekiel might've though his neighbor's ox cart was totally cherry and he wished he had one while nowadays, that sweet BMW your neighbor Bill drives makes you so mad, you may hope he gets a flat on a deserted road in the middle of nowhere. That encompasses No.10 as we should simply be happy with what we have and not long for those things that others possess.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

They came up with a saying a while back called "keeping up with the Joneses" which means to acquire all of the things that your neighbor has, whether you actually want those things or you feel you need them to be as good as your neighbor. See all of those commercials with the brand new Droid phone from Verizon?

"Don't you just HAVE to get that phone? Your friend Marcey's got one. If you don't have one, what in the hell is wrong with you?! Outcast! The new Droid from Verizon!"

But you say "Screw, Marcey. I don't need to have her phone. I'm happy with my old Nokia." and you're not alone. Many, many other people are just happy with what they have and don't need to compete with others. Good for you.

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Considering that he was one of the greatest actors of his generation and he started some of the biggest movies of the time, it's a pretty safe bet that others were busy coveting what HE had, which is when he would break out his own version of the tablets and read them the riot act.

"...what am I speaking Esperanto?! It's right THERE! Now stop coveting my stuff and shove off!"

COMMANDMENT #9: Do not covet your neighbor's wife

Men are dogs and this isn't simply something that's happened in the last few decades. When the world was young, dudes could pretty much walk up to a woman and deflower her at will unless she knew how to use a weapon or could run really fast. So after marrying the woman that you fell in love with, wouldn't it be nice to exact some type of rule that lets your neighbor Dathan know that trying to make time with your wife would mean that they would end up burning in the fiery pits of Hell for it?

Meet Dathan. Broke almost all of the commandments. Enjoyed breaking No.9 repeatedly.

So, How Are We Doing With That?


Ask individuals like Jerry Springer and Maury Povich about people that break No.9. Their shows have been fueled for years by a slew of men (and women) that covet the hell out of each other and seem to have a good old time going on TV and getting dressed up to display their pride.

Swelling up with pride...yeah

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Charlton was married to 64 years to the same woman and in a time when Hollywood had some of its most glamorous starlets (of which he acted with most), we can assume he wasn't tempted to break No.9. It didn't hurt that a number of his movies were religiously themed, a constant reminder to practice what you were scripted to preach.

Commandment #8: Do Not Bear False Witness Against Your Neighbor

Back in the day, starting a rumor about someone wasn't just something for the local old biddies to gossip about. If you told someone (say with a sharp and or pointy blade) that your neighbor Sardonius liked to steal people's sheep and get intimate with them, it could mean a pretty bad outcome for ol' Sardonius. To keep people from falsely "narc"ing on one another and making life hard for each other, Commandment No.8 comes into play.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

If you're brought before a jury to testify information that you know and you choose to alter the facts of your testimony, not only are you breaking No.8 but you're just a big friggin' liar who needs to review their life and wonder where you went wrong.

You must be so proud, slugger. Breaking records AND commandments. Wow.

Have you ever started an unfounded rumor about someone to get them back for something they did to you? No? Well then you've got number No.8 in your back pocket. Sadly, you can easily pick out any number of people that you know that have done just that AND still do it today.

Fountains of information. Too bad the water is tainted.

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Hmm...well, he was right about what was in Soylent Green BUT that crack he made about "damned dirty apes" in the Planet Of The Apes? Not cool, Chuck. Not cool at all.

Dirty enough to kiss though, Charlton?

Commandment #7: Do Not Steal

You work hard to earn those things that other people covet and bear false witness to get. Do you know much harder it was for people back in the B.C. times? No ADT, no LoJack on your camel, and houses made of things fairly easily breakable meant that everything that you earned could be easily taken by a skeevy individual just interested in acquiring YOUR stuff. No.7 is something that we're all taught from our earliest days, hoping that we all catch onto the idea that taking something that isn't yours isn't just wrong but will eventually end you up in a bad place.

The "Get Out Of Jail" free card wasn't exactly helping with enforcing No.7. Damn those Parker Brothers.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

Before our economy took a downward spiral, theft was still running pretty rampant in the U.S. and abroad and now with millions losing their jobs, it's a bleak outlook. While a man stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family is altruistic, isn't that breaking No.7? A good number of these thefts however aren't to feed one's family to but moreover to feed addictions of varying natures, playing back into the original creation of the commandment.

Never quite understood No.7 but not understanding doesn't exclude you from burning, Bernie. And you're going to roast slow, sonny jim.

But How'd Heston Handle It?

...he stole my money. Mother Lode. $4.50 at Blockbuster Video. It was a lode all right.

Commandment #6: Do Not Commit Adultery

Referencing back to No.9 where we were told not to covet our neighbor's wives, shtuping them is a definite no-no. The idea was that when a man met a woman and they found this thing between each other where the man wouldn't physcially assault the woman and just go for a kiss, these two crazy kids should form a sacred union. A union that didn't involve the wife having sex with Teamsters. No.6 helps to reassure an understanding between a man and a woman that this other person is all they're going to need even after they head off to the old folks home.

Something like this...nothing like what's about to follow...

So, How Are We Doing With That?

Where to begin? One of the ten that is the most broken and done so callously, there are many reasons for infidelity from looking for someone "new" to being bored or drunk and despite being engrained with the ideal of the biblical repercussion of diddling outside marriage, a good number of people still do it.

From people you don't know...

To those we know all too well...

But How'd Heston Handle It?

64 years. That was how long he was with his wife. While we weren't with his schwantz 24/7 and we can't tell if he ever headed down this specific path, it really depends on what you believe here. He starred alongside of the likes of Sophia Loren, Ava Gardener, Kim Hunter, and Racquel Welch. He was either the best example of No.6 that existed in his Hollywood era or an undercover poonhound that took his indiscretions to the grave with him.

HESTON: (Whispers) "You know, I'm not at all attracted to you."
LOREN: (Whispers) "...then what is poking me?"
HESTON: (Whispers) "That's my saber."
LOREN: (Whispers) "Un hunh. Anthony Quinn called his a broadsword. *Sigh*. Gotta call him."

Commandment #5: Do Not Murder

We are granted the spark of life, we are allowed to toddle through the world until we are able to walk and seek out the answer to the meaning of life itself. Then some a-hole comes along, lops your head off because he thought you were a guy that owed you money and your life is over. With one of the most precious things in life being one of the most fragile, No.5 is one of the biggest commandments that you shouldn't be breaking, no matter what the reason.

If THIS counts as breaking No.6, then everyone reading this article is screwed. Including yours truly. Man, that would suck.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

Since ye olden days when there wasn't an actual place that tabulated the number of deaths in the U.S. and abroad, there now exists a statistical database of the number of people that have been murdered in the U.S. and abroad. It's something you hear about on the news on a daily basis. Separating the accidental or self inflicted demises, the act of someone calculatingly ending the life of someone else is not something that's been curbed by No.5 and in an everchanging world of growing insanity, the number doesn't seem to be decreasing.

Damn. Let's turn to Chuck on this one. He's been a go to guy so fa...ah hell.

But How'd Heston Handle It?

A joke about how easy it would be to pry the gun from his hands now COULD be made here, but considering the topic, let's just avoid that temptation.

After John F. Kennedy was assassinated, Heston and a number of other famous people lobbied for a gun control act which was passed but only a decade and a half later, Chuck supported the right to carry guns, becoming president and spokesman for the NRA in the late 90's. While one can't say that the right to carry a gun means you will kill with said gun, in Chuck's own words at a National Press Club meeting:

"Now, I doubt any of you would prefer a rolled up newspaper as a weapon against a dictator or a criminal intruder."

"...you're lucky this isn't the Sunday edition. You'd be dead already."

THE...LAST FIVE OF...THE TEN COMMANDMENTS!

COMMANDMENT #4: Honor Your Mother And Father

Back when the commandments were written, the duties of mom and pop didn't just involve feeding, clothing and shelter for their kids. It commonly required keeping the children from being maimed or killed in times of great wars as well as being snatched up by twisted individuals with even more twisted intentions.

The look of someone up to no good.

As the family system meant that father and mother would make sure their children would be provided for as they grew older so they could become well adjusted adults, No.4 would like kids to pay some tribute to these two people that fended off warring factions and kept Edward G. Robinsons as far away as possible.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

...this is a toughie. Gone are the times of old and the archetype of the standard "mother" and "father", replaced in some variations with single parents but in even more cases parents in general that weren't ready to be parents. These particular parents don't always have the mindset to properly administer care for their children and when problems roll around, too many documented cases arise of improper care of their children. This creates resentment in children, realized or not and when it comes to expecting them to "honor" a person that's treated them shabbily, the response is a common one.

DAD: "Intervention? I'm so drunk, I can't spell intervention, smartass. But I can spell...go to your room!"

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Don't know about him honoring his own parents but his kids haven't written any tell-all books about Chuck since his passing, so it's safe to say that No.4 was practiced in the Heston household. Didn't hurt the father / son relationship when Chuck's son got a starring role in "The Ten Commandments" as baby Moses.

"And yea my son will get a film credit or personal promotion for this film will not come to pass!"

COMMANDMENT #3: Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy

So, thanks to the Almighty, you are allowed to live your life outside of an Egyptian dude whipping on you. Now, you can do pretty much whatever you want. (within reason. Remember the commandments. FYI.) So after an entire week of farming, cattle or sheep herding or standing around yelling at brick walls for people's entertainment (a profitable skill in the olden days), the Almighty asked that you took one day off to commemorate. For six days, he made the world and he took a lode off on Sunday. So should you and if it's not too much trouble, head on down to your old house of worship and remember that day with him.

So, How Are We Doing With That?

Out of our glorious 50 states, 29 of them have what's called a "blue law" which prohibits commerce on Sunday but the law doesn't apply to ever city within the state, just certain principalities. No.3 says your not supposed to work on this day, but what if I was in desperate need for a goose feather comforter and Sunday was my only day off? Shouldn't I, a hard working guy be able to go out and purchase that which will help me to sleep better at night?

*Sigh* "...it's like I'm talking to myself."

And of course, there's one of the most popular excuses as to the need for activity on Sunday.

Is God a football fan? It's a possibility but for decades, these grid iron guys have been working on Sunday to earn themselves a giant golden trophy that signifies their greatness. And millions of men and women make their way to their local stadium to cheer these guys on.

No, Jesus is playing AFTER services. Without a protective helmet though. Are you going to "horsecollar" Jesus?

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Much like most that try to follow the commandments, we could assume Chuck went to services and then went out to bring the word of God to the people, race chariots, save people from giant earthquakes or evade roaming bands of talking apes.

"You forgot the zombie killing. I know that's against No.5, but they're ZOMBIES, goddamnit!"
"Son of a bitch! I just broke...

COMMANDMENT #2: You shall not make wrongful use of the name of your God

So, we were given life and a world with pretty much everything we needed to survive. Travel across it, fly over it, if you need to poop we would all prefer you do it in private and in a place designated for it. We have a name for the one we thank for all of this and the Almighty would appreciate if you didn't use it improperly. It's not an unreasonable request in place for...oh, I don't know...making everything?

So, How Are We Doing With That?

You're headed to grandma's house with the wife and kids in tow but you're ridiculously late because grandma moved out to the country and your GPS which hates you and likes to see you miserable lands you forty miles outside of your destination. Your wife is telling you to ask directions from a man in dirty overalls, chewing on a wheat stalk, your kids are arguing about which "Twilight" movie was better and your gas tank is almost on "E".

Do you:

A ) Pull over to the side of the road and ask God to give you the strength to continue
B ) Pull over and ask the man in the dirty overalls directions as he picks up a banjo and slowly strums it

C ) Hurl the GPS out of the window and yell out "Goddamnit, screw your grandmother! We're getting back on goddamned I-95 and going home!"

A commonly used phrase which can be accompanied by "Jesus Christ", "Jesus f-ing Christ" or the newly popular "Jesus tapping dancing Christ", in times of great stress or painful injury, what comes stumbling out of our mouths goes fairly sternly against No.2. Hey, how would you like it?

"Brian f-ing Kirkland! Why do I install a pop blocker and still get spyware?!"

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Not being around Chuck at all times of the day, how can one truly determine if the guy who brought those stone tablets down the mountain ever took the lord's name in vain? He didn't look too happy coming down from Mount Sinai when he saw all of the people helped to free from bondage going crazy with sin. Might've mumbled it under his breath. Which leads us up to...

COMMANDMENT #1: I am the Lord your God, you shall have no other gods before me, you shall not make for yourself an idol

So, once again, the one we owe everything to, the one who gave us our existence is asking us for something. Seeing as how he's the one that made us, how about recognizing him as the one that did it by not looking to someone or something else for that honor. Seems pretty cut and dry, right? Of all of the commandments that were written down, isn't this like the easiest one to follow?

I believe that I have something to say about that...

From L.Ron Hubbard (seen above with one of his treasured kerchiefs about his neck) to a number of other religions with followers with plans to leave all ten of the commandments behind. This failed science fiction writer developed his church in the early 50's and got the ball rolling by getting the rich and famous to join their ranks, void of a doctrine like the commandments and replaced by a story about an alien being named Xenu who slaughtered his people millions of years ago on Earth and the alien souls are trapped within our bodies making us feel bad and causing us problems.

"...so you found the plot to "Minority Report" plausable but you can't buy into Scientology? Interview over."

But How'd Heston Handle It?

Like This...

YOUTUBE REMOVED GOD'S WRATH FOR VIOLATION OF TERMS. NOT a smart move, YouTube.

Do You Get Points For Helping Little Old Ladies Cross The Street?

So on the whole, every last one of the commandments set out before us have been broken REPEATEDLY by ourselves, people we know and people we probably don't want to where we live.

You might be reading this and disagree that you've never broken one of them and that you've lived a clean and virtous life.

You might be reading this and say this is simply a list of rules laid down by some dude real long ago to keep a bunch of wild friggin' people in line.

Still others might read this and think they're the biggest sinner in the world.

The basis for all religion and the thing that makes the idea such a strong one is your faith. Sometimes how much you believe in what you've been taught but moreso what you believe in your heart. In times of great stress when trouble seems to be bearing down on you, faith is something you have to have.

Got him that snazzy leather jacket and some top ten hits.

Do we not follow the commandments, looking at them more as guidelines and live our "heathen" lifestyles just to end up like Edward G.Robinson and his golden calf? Do we turn ourselves around and follow the commandments to their very letter, hoping to avoid damnation?

What do you believe?
Where does your faith lie?

We're not all screwed but we aren't all saved.
Keep the faith, just in case.