Man sues boss for 'condemning him to eternal damnation'
666 sticker was portal to hell, argues Christian
An American man has brought a wrongful dismissal suit over his former employer's attempt to make him wear the number of the beast - in the guise of a safety record sticker.
Billy E Hyatt alleges that he was fired from the Pliant Corp plastics factory in northern Georgia for refusing to wear a sticker declaring the factory had been accident free for 666 days, Courthouse News reports.
While that number is no doubt a testimony to Pliant's workplace safety practices, it's also, of course, the number of the beast in the Book of Revelation.
There are, El Reg must point out, a number of beasts in the said apocalyptic text, but the one in question is the beast of the sea: the one with ten horns, seven heads and ten crowns on his horns, and "upon his heads the name of blasphemy". Amongst other impositions, under the beast's reign of terror "no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name". That number being, of course, six hundred threescore and six.
Anyway, in the run up to accident-free day 666, Hyatt raised his concerns with his boss, explaining "his sincere religious belief is that to wear the number 666 would be to accept the mark of the beast and to be condemned to hell".
His boss initially told him not to worry, as someone might have an accident, or they could let the count stand still for a couple of days. (He might also have argued that since the seven headed, ten horned beast had not apparently manifested himself in Georgia, Hyatt's fears were somewhat theoretical.)
However, when the day of reckoning came, Hyatt's boss refused to offer him a religious accommodation or change the calendar, and voiced the opinion that Hyatt's beliefs were ridiculous.
Hyatt was given the choice of bearing the number of the beast or taking a three-day suspension. THe worker took the suspension, but was subsequently fired. He now claims he was subjected to harsher punishment than colleagues who had missed work for reasons other than escaping eternal torment in the fiery fireplace of Beelzebub.
He is now demanding his own judgement day, in the form of trial by jury, lost pay and benefits and an injunction.
While we can't comment on the merits of the case, we can't help thinking Hyatt might have jumped the gun. It is now clear that the beast in question is that proposed by the Vatican, in the guise of a worldwide financial regulator, and likely fulfilled by the head of the European Central Bank, Mario "dragons" Draghi. ®
Leaving aside this man's religious beliefs, what kind of employer makes you wear a sticker that says how many days there have been since the last accident? If it's worth noting at all, surely a poster on the wall would be better?
In the original text it's not actually written as "666" but as something like νρων κσρ in greek or, in modern hebrew letters, נרון קשר.
This is because, in those days, there was no separate numerical system and both cultures used letters of the alphabet as numbers, adding up various letters until the required total is reached (which is part of the logic behind numerology-based mystery cults like Kabbalah and so forth). A modern equivalent might use A as 1, B as 2 all the way up to J as 9, then K as 10, L as 100, M as 1000 and so forth.
The smart amongst you may have already noticed that the letters above spell "nron ksr" and "nrwn qsr" respectively. When the book of Revelation was written, it was done so in greek, as any literate writer in Israel of the day would have known Greek as well as Aramaic and old Hebrew. The writer may have written in Greek, however he was still thinking in Aramaic and wrote the name "nero ceasar" (or neron kaiser as it would have been in literate circles there, as they all spoke Greek rather than Latin), transliterated from aramaic to greek, as the "number of the beast". Aramaic, like Hebrew and most other semitic languages has no vowels, so the result would be the equivalent of NRWN QSR. With the transition to hindu-arabic numerals the transliteration lost its meaning and the total number was rendered simply as "666".
In some translations from greek to latin a mistake was made by the translator, who assumed that the text should say NRW QSR, resulting in some later texts having the number add up to 616.
So, to end it all, the whole "number of the beast" thing is actually a bit of historical curiosity now rather than a fundamental element of identification of some future "antichrist" figure. It's worth remembering that there is no mention of a single man named "antichrist" in the entire book of revelation. The entire book refers to events that took place around 69 AD, when the romans laid seige to Jerusalem. The beast of the sea was Nero, the beast of the land was the Jewish religious hierarchy, the "harlot" was that same hierarchy, the weeping merchants were the Jewish people and foreigners who traded in Jerusalem as it stood on the crossroads between east and west and so on and so forth. Those "end times" referred to throughout the new testament were a reference to the eventual sack of Jerusalem and the annexation of Israel as part of the Roman Empire, something anyone with a bit of foresight and brain could have predicted if they paid attention to the political motions of the day.
Basically the entire book refers to events in the past. It's over. Finito. Finished. We're living after the end of the book.
If he's such a sincere believer...
Why is he working for a company and collecting wages when he should be dedicating himself to the work his Saviour recommended: feeding the poor, looking after the widow and orphan, visiting those in prison, helping people out who need help, laying down his life for others?
Oh, I guess that would be walking the walk. So much more fun to get hung up on the superstitious, mumbo-jumbo bit of your religion and enjoy feeling outraged.
Or he could just be very, very thick.