Archive for the ‘ Religion ’ Category

#Fuck The Pope

#Fuck The Pope is what Mr Deity has to say, and I agree with him.

There is one thing that Mr Deity forgot. ‘The Pope’ at various and numerous times in history has been one of the most vile creatures to walk this Earth. To even speak as though his religion is a moral podium is to mock everyone of no faith and everyone who has died at the hands of religion.

#Fuck The Pope

A Poem Or Knot

I invented a poem, or knot

It was here on the table

now it’s not

fell off behind the bottle of Scotch

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That poem was top notch

Seventy lines of prose

You’d think I could find it

You’d think I was able

 

Trust me, I have looked

I called the publisher

That poem was booked

But that’s how it goes

 

I have been published

I am also a liar

When it comes to writing

What was I saying?

 

So, I call this Monday

Nothing exciting

Just forced into this shit

Because Sunday ran away

 

Happy Monday

The Meaning Of Life

Oh, I know… 42

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Okay, maybe not. I think that to answer the question  “what is the meaning of life?” we should start with “what is life?” I’m going show you something. Something they don’t want you to see. I don’t know the future but I know what’s happening now. I know where we’re going.

I know you’re out there. I can feel you now. I know that you’re afraid. You’re afraid of us. You’re afraid of change. I don’t know the future. I didn’t come here to tell you how this is going to end. I came here to tell you how it’s going to begin. I’m going to hang up this phone and then I’m going to show these people what you don’t want them to see. I’m going to show them a world without you, a world without rules and controls, without borders or boundaries, a world where anything is possible. Where we go from there is a choice I leave to you. — Neo

From the perspective of the universe (should it be conscious) this is your life and what it means:

Watch it closely. What do you see? Give up? No idea? Remember that video as you listen to Sean Carroll explain it.

What is the meaning of life? To dissipate energy. To push the universe closer to heat death. Nothing more, nothing less. A quick ride on a burning match and snuffed out. That’s life. Enjoy it, the ride, for all you can.

Christianity Out Of Context

I’ll admit this up front, I’m going to base this post on a paragraph taken out of context from another post (read it here) I’m not even going to mention the blog named ‘Roll To Disbelieve’ or that the OP is about Ryan Bell in some way. Nope, not going to do any of that. I’m going to take this all kinds of out of context. Here is the paragraph that woke me up like a bucket of cold water. (emphasis is mine)

I should not be surprised by this comparison. She genuinely thinks that as her religion loses cultural dominance that “iniquity will abound,” and even cites a Bible verse (Matthew 24:12) she thinks props up her assertion that Christians today are living in the “Endtimes,” that mystical apocalyptic ending of the world that will involve the Rapture, then (or before or during the Rapture, depending on exactly what Christian you’re talking to) a period of great persecution called the Tribulation, and then the Battle of Armageddon and the final destruction of the planet Earth, which in the minds of many Christians like her will start when her religion experiences a great “falling away.”

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I read the above paragraph (whole post actually) and as I did it occurs to me that the belief that without religion that iniquity would abound in the world is a belief that can ONLY be held by people who are absolutely, positively, without a doubt, beyond repair, ignorant of the news.

We are living in, one of the most peaceful time in human history, but there is this:

Studies demonstrate the world is becoming less violent, and that human warfare is on the decline. There is one aspect of the human existence, however, that continues to ignite humans to commit violence and atrocities against fellow humans. A major new study published by the Pew Research Center shows that religious hostilities reached a 6-year high in 2012.

We can look at the news and see ‘random’ ‘psychotics’ attacking police officers while chanting to their deity. There are no stories of atheists attacking cops while shouting there is no god.

Then there is Evangelicals trying to kill the gays wherever they can:

The Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Act, 2014 (previously called the “Kill the Gays bill” in the western mainstream media due to the originally proposed death penalty clauses) The legislative proposal would broaden the criminalisation of same-sex relations in Uganda domestically, and further includes provisions for Ugandans who engage in same-sex relations outside of Uganda, asserting that they may be extradited for punishment back to Uganda, and includes penalties for individuals, companies, media organisations, or non-governmental organisations that know of gay people or support LGBT rights.

Do we need to look at how much money the LDS wasted trying to prevent same sex marriage in a different state?

It is estimated that the amount of money the US government loses in tax exemptions for religions could feed the hungry, clothe and house the homeless and improve our medical services every year, year on year, because the amount that religion steals from the rest of us is perhaps as much as $71 billion a year.

I’m just getting started. Do we have to mention the mess that the Roman Catholic Church has made around the globe by abusing and raping children? Do we need to put links to every Christian pastor who raped or stole? Do we have to example every mega-church pastor’s problems? I don’t think so. The news is littered with stories about the religious doing iniquities left, right, and center.

That doesn’t even begin to cover the self proclaimed religious politicians and lobbyists and their iniquity. There are more convicted felons in the houses of congress across the US than there are employees in most small businesses. Go ahead, Google that one.

Back when everyone was a ‘believer’ and religion ruled Europe they had a name for it, it was called the dark ages. Toward the end when humans began to decide that we needed a different way, one of the first was some pissed off barons who took King John out in the woods and made him sign the Magna Carta and it is these precepts of law (and others) which were spread around the world, refined here and there by various colonists as they gained freedom. Forget the believer’s god and its hell, people should be afraid of law enforcement and citizens with guns. Those citizens do not like to be robbed, raped, and treated poorly. Those citizens created revolutions across most of the globe now. While they did not choose to eliminate religion most of them  have removed religion from government… for a reason.

Before you get all huffy, from this we can easily conclude that being part of a religion (even an integral part) does not make you a good person.

Now, to say that iniquity would happen if religion disappeared is blindingly stupid. The laws don’t stop these people and religion certainly doesn’t stop them. In fact, for much of it, it is religion that makes their crimes possible or often enough the religion hides their crimes.

Why do we allow such people a public speaking post? This is exactly the kind of person that should be laughed at and mocked and shamed into silence. That one thought is so stupid it is offensive.

 

 

Christmas Ghosts

I’m sitting here thinking. Not to myself, the bottle of scotch I got for Christmas and I are having a conversation. It’s not much of a conversation I’ll admit but it is a conversation. The bottle asked me “where is all the Christmas ghosts at?” After correcting its grammar I tried to explain that this was just a story about stirring the conscience of the readers.

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So the bottle says “you have a conscience, why no ghosts?”

That got me to thinking. Why don’t I have ghosts? Ghosts are supposed to be: an apparition of a dead person that is believed to appear or become manifest to the living, typically as a nebulous image. Then it hit me. I don’t believe in the supernatural so I’ll never see ghosts. Wait. I just said because I don’t believe in them I’ll never see them.

It’s an odd way of thinking but in reality I don’t see them so I don’t believe in them is more accurate. There is also no evidence for them that is convincing or credible. Then the bottle said “but when you were a child….” and I cut it off. So what! I was a child then and I did what children do. Now I’m not a child.

https://i2.wp.com/www.apostoliclighthouse.org/Lesson8-7_files/image002.jpgYes, it’s true. When I was a child I was taught to believe that there is a Holy Ghost.

Then I remembered something:

Matthew 12:31-32

31 lWherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. 32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.

That’s right folks. I’m unforgiven. Never to be forgiven. The all-loving god of Abraham cannot forgive this one thing and I managed to do that one thing. There are no ghosts, not even holy ones. That childhood indoctrination was not enough, I just can’t believe in what cannot be seen – by design.

So me and the scotch are collaborating, here’s to seeing you in hell HAHAHAHAHAHA

Holy crap did they try to scare us to death. Always watching, always there. Deny the big brother of the god of Abraham and you burn forever. How can we consider people that teach this stuff to their kids as competent parents? Oh, I know they are doing what they think is right and best for their own offspring. Still, looking at it from the big picture how can we let them torture children this way. I know it’s not physical torture, but is physical pain ever the worst part of torture?

Am I saying that teaching theism to your children is child abuse? No. I’m saying it’s torture. An entirely different set of laws apply. No, I’m not going to spend 2500 words justifying that thought. Scotch says we don’t have that much time. Teaching your children something that is against all logic and without evidence and which comes with pain of eternal torture for not believing is torture of a mental kind. Sure, lots of us survived it but there are a lot of messed up people in the world and we are not trying to explain that. Just saying.

I’ve got no Christmas ghosts. There are a couple of things from my past that I don’t want to talk about, but push comes to shove I will. It won’t kill me, it’s just unpleasant to contemplate.

I start the new year like I did the last one. Confident that I did as good as I could in the last and confident I will do as good as I can in the next. No ghosts. Hell be damned. I am not guiltless, but I do not feel guilty. Perhaps this is why no ghosts visit me this time of year?

What ghosts visit you?

Start The New Year With A Refresher

Everyone is publishing their blog statistics and wishing everyone a Happy New Year. I thought about that but there is more on my mind. A comment conversation recently regarding the historicity of Jesus and I thought I’d start the year off that way. It does the mind good not only to start afresh but to have a refresher on what we know.

https://i1.wp.com/quotespictures.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/the-worst-thing-about-being-lied-to-is-knowing-you-werent-worth-the-truth-emotion-quote.jpgLet’s start with Bible archaeology from PBS. Then let’s let the L.A. Times cast some doubt on the veracity of the Christian Bible.

Today I read a post by Surprised By Doubt which is about a Bart Eherman video

Why Evolution Is True had a guest post by Ben Goren, here in its entirety

The Jesus Challenge

by Ben Goren

Many æons ago, in the heyday of USENET, I was first exposed to the idea that maybe there simply wasn’t any “there” there at the heart of Jesus’s story. It was, of course, at first a bizarre notion…but one that eventually become overwhelmingly compelling to me — and especially, ironically enough, after I took the time to look up the original sources Christian apologists offered as evidence for Jesus’s existence.

Somewhere along the line, I started challenging apologists to offer a coherent apologia, a theory of Jesus that was both self-consistent and supported by evidence. In all the years since then, I cannot recall even one single person, Christian, atheist, or other, who argues for an historical Jesus who has ever taken me up on this challenge, despite repeatedly offering it and even begging people to take a whack at it. And, so, I’d like to thank Jerry for letting me use his own soapbox to present this challenge to what’s, I’m sure, the largest audience it’s yet received.

It’s quite simple.

  1. Start with a clear, concise, unambiguous definition of who Jesus was. Do the Gospels offer a good biography of him? Was he some random schmuck of a crazy street preacher whom nobody would even thought to have noticed? Was he a rebel commando, as I’ve even heard some argue?
  2. Offer positive evidence reliably dated to within a century or so of whenever you think Jesus lived that directly supports your position. Don’t merely cite evidence that doesn’t contradict it; if, for example, you were to claim that Jesus was a rebel commando, you’d have to find a source that explicitly says so.
  3. Ancient sources being what they are, there’s an overwhelming chance that the evidence you choose to support your theory will also contain significant elements that do not support it. Take a moment to reconcile this fact in a plausible manner. What criteria do you use to pick and choose?
  4. There will be lots of other significant pieces of evidence that contradict your hypothetical Jesus. Even literalist Christians have the Apocrypha to contend with, and most everybody else is comfortable observing widespread self-contradiction merely within the New Testament itself. Offer a reasonable standard by which evidence that contradicts your own position may be dismissed, and apply it to an example or two.
  5. Take at least a moment to explain how Jesus could have gone completely unnoticed by all contemporary writers (especially those of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Philo, Pliny the Elder, and the various Roman Satirists) yet is described in the New Testament as an otherworldly larger-than-life divine figure who was spectacularly publicly active throughout the region.
  6. Last, as validation, demonstrate your methods reliable by applying them to other well-known examples from history. For example, compare and contrast another historical figure with an ahistorical figure using your standards.

And, for everybody’s sake, please be brief. You shouldn’t need more than about five hundred words to outline your thesis. By way of example and for the sake of fairness, here are my own answers making the case for Jesus’s mythical nature:

  1. Jesus is a syncretic Pagan death / rebirth / salvation demigod in the mold of Osiris, Dionysus, and Mithras grafted onto Judaism.
  2. Justin Martyr, the very first of the Christian apologists writing in the early second century, devotes much of his First Apology to exactly this thesis. Indeed, once you eliminate all the prior parallels that he unambiguously identifies from Jesus’s biography, nothing else remains. Further, Lucian of Samosata describes “Peregrinus” as having been a con artist who interpolated Pagan religion wholesale into the nascent Christianity — and Paul’s introduction of the Mithraic (as identified by Justin Martyr) Eucharist into Christianity in 1 Corinthians 11 is a perfect example of this in practice, especially in the full context of the chapter.
  3. Justin Martyr’s explanation for the extensive imitation (his word) is that evil daemons with the power of foresight knew Jesus was coming and so planted false stories of Pagan demigods centuries in advance in order to lead honest men astray. His identification of the Pagan elements of Jesus’s story stand on their own; I do not think it much of a stretch to discount his supernatural explanation for the cross-contamination.
  4. At least superficially, the Gospels purport to be honest reporting of Jesus and his ministry as the God’s honest Capital-T Truth. However, again as described by Justin Martyr, they are nothing more than fantastic faery tales imitating well-known Pagan myths. The Gospel according to Matthew, for example, doesn’t merely report that Jesus died on the cross; in the same passage, he claims that the Sun was blotted out, the Earth shook, and all the graves opened and an horde of zombies descended upon Jerusalem. As such, even if the author sincerely believed he was honestly reporting factual history, the death reported clearly is not that of a mere mortal nor an historical figure. Such is the case for all other Gospel stories; the mundane events are an afterthought that only serve as insignificant vessels for the spectacular pyrotechnics. Concluding historicity from them is like concluding that Luke Skywalker was an historical figure because he grew up as an orphan on a farm.
  5. Jesus wasn’t noticed by his contemporaries because he hadn’t yet been invented — or, at least, he was just starting to be invented. The Pauline Epistles represent an early stage in that process when Jesus was more divine spirit than human interloper; the Gospels represent the point at which the Church later decided development was complete. (And the Angel Moroni represents Smith’s continued development.)
  6. What I propose of Jesus is no different from what virtually everybody would agree is true of all the Pagan demigods Justin Martyr identifies with Jesus — Bacchus, Perseus, Bellerophon on Pegasus, Mercury, Mithras, and all the rest. Examples of entirely mythical gods are legion in antiquity. We see the same pattern continue into modernity; Joseph Smith and L. Ron Hubbard were historical figures, but the angel Moroni and Xenu are purest fiction. Similarly, the various authors of the New Testament texts were real humans, but the “stone soup” Jesus they collectively created over the course of a few generations is not.

For those who’re counting, that was just about five hundred words. Any case for an historical Jesus should be possible to make similarly succinctly…

…but I’ll predict right up front that the streak will remain unbroken, and not a single soul will attempt to meet this challenge. Oh, sure; there’ll be plenty of replies to this post, esepcially many arguing with my own mythicist argument. But of actual point-by-point responses to the challenge there will be none.

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When the book your deity wrote or inspired is full of lies, what does that say about your deity? Perhaps your deity doesn’t feel you were worth the truth? Perhaps your deity doesn’t deal in truth? Perhaps your deity is not potent enough to protect the only words he ever gave you, which begs the question what care has he for you?

I’d be willing to bet that there are dozens of ways to show how the god of Abraham appears more like the supposed satan than the stories of the satan themselves make the satan look like the satan. If god lied to you about these other things how can you know he is not lying when he promises an afterlife in heaven?

So, as we all start our new year it does us well to remember the things we’ve learned so far. If there is truth of an afterlife, why should we be looking for it in a book of lies?

Note: I did not even try to make this comprehensive … the volume of it would simply be too much for even a dozen posts. This is just a refresher.

Faith And Violence

I know that there are many believers who think their faith is non-violent. This post is about that very point.

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I would like all and any theists to show me how their faith is non-vilent.

I get it,  you yourself are not violent. I’m asking you to show me that your sect is not violent. Show me how it is hat I should not consider your belief a part of a violent sect. That’s right, I am presupposing that your belief is violent and I’m asking you to show me that it is not so. Show me that your belief and sect has never been violent. Show me that your sect has never been and will not be violent.

 

Go on, show me

 

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