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civil

English translation: non-religious, secular, earthly, material

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:civil
English translation:non-religious, secular, earthly, material
Entered by: Ana Juliá
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09:58 Mar 13, 2004
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Religion
English term or phrase: civil
We are taught to manage our civil and spiritual business with ease and safety, and to avoid everything that might encumber of ensnare us. Stumbling-bolcks lie before us in our journey through life, and they who have not a skilful guide often fall upon them to their hurt.

Do you think that "civil" here can be undestood as "earthly", "material"?
Ana Juliá
Spain
Local time: 04:41
non-religious
Explanation:
is what it means in this context. It is the counterpart to spiritual in your sentence, so that "civil and spiritual business" means "all one's business".

The Oxford Dict. defines one of the senses of civil as "of ordinary citizens and their concerns, as distinct from military or naval or ecclestical matters".

Your example is similar to the way civil is used in the term "civil marriage" which means a secular marriage ceremony (in the UK, one carried out at a registry office) as distinct from a religious ceremony held in a church.
Selected response from:

Armorel Young
Local time: 03:41
Grading comment
thanks!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +12non-religious
Armorel Young
5 +5secular
Christopher Crockett
4 +3interaction with human beings
Sven Petersson
5State and/or secular
humbird
4 +1earthly
George Rabel
4everyday lifeRHELLER
3of a community of citizens, their government or their interrelations
chica nueva
3 -1social
Sonia Gomes
4 -3polite and obligingPnina


  

Answers


10 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
interaction with human beings


Explanation:
My interpretation:

civil and spiritual business > interaction with human beings and God

Sven Petersson
Sweden
Local time: 04:41
Native speaker of: Native in SwedishSwedish, Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Heidi Stone-Schaller
42 mins
  -> Thank you very much!

agree  chopra_2002
54 mins
  -> Thank you very much!

agree  Mario Marcolin: :)
2 hrs
  -> Thank you very much!

agree  giogi
3 hrs
  -> Thank you very much!

neutral  Scott Horne: secular
6 hrs

disagree  Refugio: And yet much spiritual business involves interaction with human beings 'Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.' (Matthew 25:34-40)
18 hrs
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17 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +12
non-religious


Explanation:
is what it means in this context. It is the counterpart to spiritual in your sentence, so that "civil and spiritual business" means "all one's business".

The Oxford Dict. defines one of the senses of civil as "of ordinary citizens and their concerns, as distinct from military or naval or ecclestical matters".

Your example is similar to the way civil is used in the term "civil marriage" which means a secular marriage ceremony (in the UK, one carried out at a registry office) as distinct from a religious ceremony held in a church.

Armorel Young
Local time: 03:41
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 51
Grading comment
thanks!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
6 mins

agree  Heidi Stone-Schaller
35 mins

agree  chopra_2002
47 mins

agree  Jonathan MacKerron: yes, or "secular" as my preacher Dad always used to say
55 mins

agree  Charlie Bavington: secular is a good shout. As Armorel said, the implication is that the texts' 'civil' + 'spiritual' = everything. In this case, I guess it would include military and navy, no matter what the OED says !!!!
1 hr

agree  Mario Marcolin: secular + spiritual, military would be part of secular, wouldn't it?
2 hrs

agree  Scott Horne
6 hrs

agree  Nado2002
12 hrs

agree  hookmv: or secular as suggested below
13 hrs

agree  Asghar Bhatti
18 hrs

agree  Refugio
18 hrs

agree  mportal
2 days3 hrs
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47 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): -3
polite and obliging


Explanation:
This is one of the definitions of the adjective "civil". It means adhering to the norms of polite social communication and helping or gratifying by performing a small service.


    The Oxford Paperback Dictionary
Pnina
Israel
Local time: 05:41
Native speaker of: Native in HebrewHebrew

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Scott Horne: not in this context
6 hrs

disagree  humbird: Yes that is one of the definition. But issue at hand is not politeness which is a mandane matter. We are talking in a context of religion.
6 hrs

disagree  Refugio: Since civil is contrasted with spiritual, are you implying that spiritual business is uncivil (impolite)?
17 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): -1
social


Explanation:
Social, as maybe dealing with other people

Just a thought

Sonia

Sonia Gomes
Local time: 08:11
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in PortuguesePortuguese

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Scott Horne: no
5 hrs
  -> why not
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3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
earthly


Explanation:
Hola. Ana
Looks like you have the best option: "earthly vs spiritual"

George Rabel
Local time: 22:41
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Spanish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Scott Horne
3 hrs
  -> Thanks
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5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
everyday life


Explanation:
the English here is quite poor so all of these responses might fit (more precise language leads us to more targeted vocabulary)

good luck

RHELLER
United States
Local time: 20:41
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 44

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Scott Horne: not the best choice
1 hr
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7 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
State and/or secular


Explanation:
Overall I agree with Christpher but it's not a whole story. When I think about it (as an American citizen) first thing comes to my mind is US Constitution's "Separation of religion and State". Here I am using "State" in this context. Then "civil" the asker brought up is a thing that is in opposite of religion or religous institution.
See following reference:
"3. You use civil to describe things that are connected with the state rather than with a religion ....i.e. Jewish civil and religious law.
-- Cobuild English-English Dictionary."

Religion was once the Government, then state government (civil power) took over its place in modern history. Think about it. Surely if you want simple answer, then "secular" is the one.


humbird
Native speaker of: Native in JapaneseJapanese, Native in EnglishEnglish
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +5
secular


Explanation:
The best antipode for "spirtual" here, in my opinon, is "secular" [< Lat. "saeculum" = "world"], as Armorel, Jonathan & Mario have noted in passing.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 hrs 59 mins (2004-03-13 18:58:12 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

The answer to your question, \"Do you think that \'civil\' here can be undestood as \'earthly\', \'material\'?\"

is \"Yes\"

Earthly/material/mundane/secular, as opposed to Religious/spiritual/transcendant.

Deconstructing, trying to get at the context :

\"We are taught...\"

by whatever \"spiritual\"/religious practice is at issue here...

\"to manage our civil...

just not a very good choice of words.

\"and spiritual business with ease and safety, and to avoid everything that might encumber of ensnare us.\"

The idea of the \"material\" world \"ensnaring\" human beings is common to almost all religious traditions, of course.

\"Stumbling-blocks lie before us in our journey through life...\"

Sounds rather Hindu/Buddhist, to me.

\"and they who have not a skilful guide often fall upon them to their hurt.\"

Likewise, the idea of a \"skillful guide\" [\"guru\"] is not an idea commonly found in the Western [Christian] exoteric tradition.

Do you think that \"civil\" here can be undestood as \"earthly\", \"material\"?

Yes.

Christopher Crockett
Local time: 22:41
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 16

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Scott Horne: correct
35 mins
  -> Thanks, Scott.

agree  danya: it best fits the context, IMO
2 hrs
  -> Well, it *might*, if we knew anything about the context. Thanks, danya.

agree  Nado2002
6 hrs
  -> Thanks, Nado.

agree  hookmv
7 hrs
  -> Thanks, Veronica. Wow, does your last name *really* have two umlauted "o"s, back to back? I don't think I've ever seen such a thing before.

agree  GoodWords: laico, mundano, material - - Matthew 22:21
7 hrs
  -> Thanks, Good. Matt. 22:21, about Caesar's stuff vs. God's is the general idea, but our text is more about *joining* those two, than about seperating them, seems to me.
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13 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
of a community of citizens, their government or their interrelations


Explanation:
of a community of citizens, their government or their interrelations

compare:
1 render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's (civil) and unto God that which is God's (spiritual) (The Bible)
2 civil law and Church law
civil law = the body of law that an individual nation or state has established for itself
3 civil marriage and Church marriage
civil marriage = a marriage performed by a public official, not by a clergyman

=> I think the inference is that there are two realms, that of civil society (the business of a citizen and its obligations) and that of the Church.


    Collins Concise English Dictionary
chica nueva
Local time: 14:41
Works in field
Native speaker of: English
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