flesh (human nature)

The Greek that is often translated as “flesh” in English (when referring to the lower human nature) can, according to Nidq (1947, p. 153) “very rarely be literally translated into another language. ‘My meat’ or ‘my muscle’ does not make sense in most languages.” He then gives a catalog of almost 30 questions to determine a correct translation for that term.

Accordingly, the translations are very varied:

See also spirit / flesh.

mind (heart / soul) (letters of John)

The concept that is expressed as “mind” in English is translated as “head-heart” in Yatzachi Zapotec. This concept is applied to terms that are translated in English as “fellowship” (“head-hearts are one”), the “inner-self” (“have no evil” is “have no evil in our head-hearts”), “eye” (in the sense of “understanding”), “heart” and “soul.”

Source: John Beekman in Notes on Translation November 1964, p. 1-22.

See also heart, soul, mind (with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind).

complete verse (1 John 2:16)

Following are a number of back-translations of 1 John 2:16:

  • Uma: “For all that is in this world–like the evil desires of our hearts, what we see and we desire, whatever makes-high [i.e.,, haughty] our hearts–all that sort of thing is not from our Father, it is from the world [emphatic].” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “Because all that belongs to this world, that means the bad things that ones (dual) body/person craves, and (the things) that one (dual) sees and craves and (the things) that mankind boasts-about, all these (things) are only of this world and are not from our (dual) Father God.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “For as for any kind of evil behaviour here on the earth, like evil desires or the evil things which are seen and desired by people, or their causing themselves to be praised because of the possessions they have acquired, these things do not come from our Father God, rather they just come from here on the earth.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “Because all that are like these: the bad-things that sinful people love/want, their coveting (lit. grabbing-after) what they see, and their boasting about their possessions and their status, it is not God our Father who is their source but rather they are from this earth.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “Because as for all the evil here under the heavens, it really is opposed to God. Like the habit of indulging our own desire which is evil, the habit of wanting to get everything one sees, and the habit of being conceited about the things in our lives. These ways/habits didn’t come from God the Father, but rather they come from here under the heavens.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
  • Tenango Otomi: “Because all the evil here in the world is not the decision of God, rather it is the decision of people themselves. People do their own pleasures. What all they see, they want to own it all. And they pride themselves about how they live.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)
  • Yatzachi Zapotec: “All these things people do who are in this world: they do evil which their evil head-hearts desire intensely, and they do evil which they want to do by reason of what they see, and they are proud of their possessions. The people who do like that think only of what happens on this earth. They do not do what our father God wants.”
  • Eastern Highland Otomi: “Because all the deeds of the world, God didn’t cause (prescribe, ordain) them like doing one’s own will, and the sins which one’s heart likes, and when one is proud because of what he possesses. But doings like these originated here in the world.”
  • Tzotzil: “The people (unbelieving) who are here in the world, their hearts are taken up with what their bodies want and what looks nice to their eyes, and what they are proud about (raise themselves up about), our (in) Father God does not want that we (in) still do this also like the people do.”
  • Sayula Popoluca: “Because all that is in this world, the evil our heart begs for, and we want that evil we see, and if we boast because of our possessions, these things our father doesn’t give, but this world gives them.” (Source for this and three above: John Beekman in Notes on Translation 12, November 1964, p. 1ff.)