Alice C. Linsley
Ethical concerns of the ancient Afro-Arabians involved binary opposites or binary sets such as east-west, male-female, day-night, hot-cold, dry-wet, raw-cooked, life-death, and heaven-earth. These sets are universally and objectively observed in creation. Not every set of opposites is a binary set. Tall-short and talent-untalented do not represent binary sets because they are entirely subjective.
There is no doubt that these peoples going back to at least the Neolithic period thought of the world in terms of observable binary sets. Further, they observed these binary sets as a fixed feature in nature. The binary sets were used to determine good and evil. Good recognized and honored the fixed boundaries observed in creation. Evil violated the boundaries observed in creation.
Good and evil were themselves opposites, but not equal. The binary worldview of the ancients was not dualistic. One member of the binary set is by its nature superior in some way to the other. So the Sun, as the greater light, is superior to the Moon. The male, as the larger and stronger, is superior to the female. Modern values and political correctness are irrelevant here. These distinctions are objective and universally observable.
Ancient peoples were close observers of nature. They recognized that seasons run in a cycle, the Sun appears to move from east to west, and people bring forth people, not plants or other animals. In other words, there is a fixed quality to the binary sets and to the cycles of nature. This is very unlike the randomness notion held by many today.
Today scientists study the sky for answers to the origins of the universe. The ancients studied the heavens because they believed that the pattern observed there speaks of the Creator's nature and how we should order our lives on earth. This is the idea behind the part of the Lord's Prayer that says "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."
The binary sets also provide direction and guidance. Lacking a compass, we can watch where the Sun rises to determine east. Knowing east, we can determine the direction of west. Just as the directional poles help us to avoid disorientation, so the binary sets observed universally and objectively in Nature can help us to avoid ethical confusion.