Give Us Barabbas

Beneath my What If? What If? What If? post, Barabbas himself became an Apologist For Jesus, and left this extended comment.

Allow me to apologize for my brothers. I believe God gives every person a choice to believe or not. I’m not responsible for your choice and though it saddens me, I must respect your choice. May God meet you where you are and draw you to Himself “with chords of kindness” not clever or manipulative arguments or threats of eternal punishment. Have a wonderful day and again, I apologize for my fellow Christians that may have pushed too hard and far without respecting your freedom. – Barabbas

One:  Do not apologize for others.  It only highlights their misdeeds, mistakes, and contradictions.  It also makes both of you appear weak and needy.  Be honest.  Only apologize for your own errors.

Two:  Do not ever label my disbelief as merely a choice!  Never have I suddenly just chosen to be a petulant, rebellious asshole.  My Atheism is as fundamentally part of my being as my gorgeous brown eyes.  I have been an Atheist longer than you have been alive.  I got that way, not through choices and options, but by observing Reality as it presents itself to me.  The reality is, I see no God/gods.

Three:  A little convincing evidence of the existence of your specific God, and that you are somehow privy to what He/She/It/They will and will not do, would be a lot more useful than your vaguely-expressed wish and hope that someday – somehow – your Reality-impaired pet entity, will finally show up to see me, and validate all your unproven assumptions.

There was a reason that saccharine was banned.  Your ‘all sweetness and light and love and kindness’ delivery is, perhaps, a little less grating than those Apologists who promise me Hell and eternal damnation if I don’t agree with them.  At least they have the courage of their convictions, and are not afraid to express them.  Yours is cloying, and sickly sweet.  I feel religious diabetes developing.

Four:  Are you in the church choir, or should the line read, “with cords of kindness”?  You promised me no tricks or threats, but that sounds suspiciously like church BDSM – a little God bondage.  😳

Five:  You must lead a sheltered life, if you think that Mr. Torpedo-Victim did more than ruffle my hair.  I have engaged with Bible-thumpers who would have him for breakfast.  I feared none of them on a philosophy and logic basis.  The only reason I have hung back from some, is the modern, technological concern about flaming, hacking and doxxing.  Some of those good, loving, Christians quickly forget that ‘turn the other cheek’ command, when their beliefs are refuted.

Online Christian debaters give me as much freedom as I give them.  I allow them every opportunity to make foolish, irrational claims, and they let me point out the errors in their arguments, and make fun of their presentations.  See, everybody has fun.  👿

Dr. Who’s Questions

The Doctor (He doesn’t say, ‘of what.’) claims that he just wants to ask some respectful questions of Atheists – no trick or gotcha ones.  He wants to amass the information, and sift and sort it, to produce a published report.  When asked when he might submit it, and to whom, he was delightfully vague.

He and his wife were Atheists, until each of them had a revelation from the Christian God, and they became Jews For Jesus.  His questions natter on and on – and on, full of presuppositions and leading statements.  Another blogger graciously simplified the list, although I included part of his number six, for context and clarity.  I thought I’d have a go at them.

  • Is Your Atheism Based on Study or Experience? …

Yes!, to both.  As young as seven or eight, I regarded stories that started with “In The Beginning” to be no more believable than those that began, “Once Upon A Time.”  I didn’t realize until I became an adult myself, that other children, and adults, took them seriously.  I became curious enough to begin a long-term investigation.  I spent a great deal of time looking at arguments for or against God’s existence, and eventually had to conclude that there just wasn’t any evidence for God that stood up to examination.

  • Do You Have Purpose and Destiny? …

Yes.  I have had many ‘Purposes,” and will probably have more before I die, but each of them was created and affixed by me, or those close to me, not by some supernatural entity.  I believe that I have a destiny.  It’s just that I am not enough of a fortune-teller to see far enough into the future to get a clear glimpse of what it might be.

  • Does God Exist? …

This might seem a strange question to be asking of Atheists.  In the original long-winded version, he wanted Atheists to provide total, complete, 100% proof, that there was absolutely no chance that God exists.  This is the philosophical equivalent to home invasion.  There are almost no things that can be utterly proved not to exist.  He appeared to want a tiny gap, where he could wedge his definition of God into.  I consider the possibility of God existing, only slightly more likely than the existence of a married bachelor.

  • Can Science Explain the Origin of Life? …

Science has explained the origin of life!  There is one major, largely-accepted (by biologists and related scientists) theory, and a couple of minor variations.  They all entail the chemical soup present in early Earth seas, with geothermal energy and solar radiation fueling and mutating the chemical reactions, until self-replicating RNA strands evolved upward to cells and DNA.  All that free energy powered the increasing DNA complexity.

  • Have You Questioned Your Atheism? …

Constantly and continuously!  I have never been convinced that I can’t be wrong.  Over the years I have done considerable reading and study.  Now, with YouTube, I can watch debates and lectures.  Atheism is merely the lack of belief in God/gods – the failure by theists to provide sufficiently convincing evidence.  (See above) With all the research and investigation that I have done, I continue not to be convinced that God is guilty of existing.

  • Are You Materialistic? …
    Are you completely materialistic in your mindset, meaning, human beings are entirely physical, human consciousness is an illusion, and there is no spiritual realm of any kind?

First, a pedantic language lesson, I think that phrasing should be ‘are you a materialist?’. ‘Materialistic’ refers to someone who prioritizes obtaining money and possessions!  I believe that humans, and all else within our Universe, are material.  I don’t think it makes much sense to say that consciousness is an illusion.  I think a more accurate phrasing of the materialist position on consciousness would be that it’s the product of material things/physical laws.  I continue to see no evidence of a spiritual realm of any kind, except in the hopes and dreams of the gullible.  I do not believe in tarot, Ouija boards, crystals, ghosts, mind-reading, fortune-telling, or a miracle-producing God.

  • Would You Be Willing to Follow the God of the Bible?

It depends which part of the Bible you’re talking about when you say ‘God of the Bible’.

From reading the earlier part of the Old Testament, I remember a god laden with petty jealousy, orchestrating hideous mass deaths, with archaic views on rape and slavery and some strange gaps in his scientific knowledge. The existence of this god would be bad news.

In the later part of the Old Testament, I glimpsed a different and better kind of god; the god of Ezekiel 18 and similar passages, expecting us to take personal responsibility but also willing to see our virtues and our efforts and to judge us fairly. The existence of this god would be good news, and, yes, I would follow and honor him.

In the New Testament, we get the most hideous god of all; the one who condemns all non-Christians to an eternity of torment, who blames the Jews for sticking to the laws that He himself strictly instructed them to keep to forever, who expects us to overlook the ways he acted back in the early books, and who tries to convince us that all these things are really signs of great love and concern on his part. The existence of this god would be terrible news. And, to answer the question, I could never honor such a god, and while I suppose I’d follow him because ‘Or burn in hell’ isn’t really much of an option, it would never be willingly.

Eight Ways To Be Wrong About Atheists

The quickest and surest way, is to not actually engage with Atheists.  Don’t talk to them, debate them, or ask them questions.  Don’t listen to, or accept, their answers and explanations.  Just keep spouting groundless religious claims that you inherited from someone else.  Be like this guy, who had

Eight Reasons Not To Be An Atheist

  1. An atheist assigns himself to life with merely finite purposes

His first claim is full of the presupposition of choice and rebellion.  If indeed, God does not exist, then finite purposes are all that there are.  His further claim that even Atheists feel that there is something bigger than them – something outside them – still doesn’t prove that IT is God.  A little concrete evidence of His existence might change that.

  1. The atheist must also suppress the demands of logic

Again, we see the presupposition from Something complex must have been designed, to, A design requires a designer, so, The designer must have been God.  None of these three claims are necessarily true, and do not necessarily follow one another.  A large mirror, dropped on a concrete floor, will produce an amazingly complex result, with no designer.  Apologists like this don’t even understand Logic, unless it works in their favor.

  1. Yet, ironically, the atheist has to believe in miracles without believing in God

Here, he trots out the old, tired, often-refuted Kalam Cosmological Argument, saying that everything that begins to exist must have a cause.  Since he doesn’t have enough imagination, and scientific understanding, he can’t (and doesn’t want to) think of any alternative, so he plugs in God as the only option.

Physicists have posited several theories for the existence of the Universe.  Constant energy infusion into a bubble of the Meta-verse may have caused it to shit spit out our local representation.  Since Time only came into existence with the coalescence of Matter, there was never a Time when the Universe did not exist.  Therefore, it is possible for the Universe to have a finite past – yet to have existed infinitely – no God required.

  1. An atheist must also suppress all notions of morality

Why??!  Just because he says so??!  Most Atheists make no claims about morality, because it is a term that has been co-opted by Christians.  Atheists have ethics and empathy.  The Christian God of the Bible – the archetype of their moral values – not only permitted, but encouraged, murder, rape, torture, forced marriage, genocide, racism and slavery.  Good Christians and their morals clog prisons, rehab centers and divorce courts.  I want nothing to do with Christian morals.

  1. In fact, the atheist must conclude that evil is an illusion

So, if Atheism is valid, there are no real evils, just violations of human customs or conventions. How hard would it be to think of murderers as merely having bad manners?

Evil” is indeed, an illusion, one believed in by most Christians.  It does not exist as a distinct entity.  For any given situation, there are different possible series of actions.  Some will be more beneficial to an individual, and the Human race as a whole.  Others will reduce individual and group happiness and well-being.

Drinking battery acid – or Ivermectin – may not be “evil,” but it will not produce the most good.  Neither will murder.  It is far more than mere ‘bad manners.’  I know of no Atheist who would claim it was.  I am appalled that this Christian Apologist would do so.

  1. The atheist must also live with the arrogance of his position

His assertion that there is no God requires that he pretend to possess total knowledge.

That is why Apologists get so upset when Atheists insist that they simply don’t believe because they have not been presented with convincing evidence.  For the Christian, it’s like punching a fogbank, so they lie pretend that Atheists say things that most of us don’t.  For many Christians, their religion is their life.  Despite their protestations, they aren’t half as upset that we don’t believe in their God, as they are when they find that we don’t believe in them.

  1. The atheist must also deny the validity of historical proof

The extensive manuscript evidence of eyewitnesses to the resurrection is presented in an unbiased, authentic manner.

Yeah, right??!  Pull the other one.  Four Gospels that don’t agree with each other, and one author who wasn’t there, but who claims that 500 people saw the risen Christ – only – that’s all there is, one man’s claim.  There is no list of names, or where/how many places, this occurred.  There are not 500 sworn affidavits, just a vague assertion.  I couldn’t get someone convicted of double-parking with that quality of evidence.

  1. Finally, atheists must admit that humans are not importantly different from other animals

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, that desperate, ego-driven need to feel special.  Humans are like, and different from, other animals in a variety of ways, and to a range of degrees.  Science is finding that species like whales and dolphins and apes and chimpanzees are remarkably human-like in many ways.  I’d like to drop him in the middle of the Serengeti, near a pride of hungry lions, and let him explain to them, just how important he is.

The atheist’s problem with belief in God is not an absence of evidence but suppression of it.
Citation needed!  Many well-known Atheists were priests, preachers, seminarians, and evangelicals.  Reputable polls show that, on average, Atheists know more about the Bible and the Christian faith, than most Christians do.  Their ‘evidence’ is not being suppressed.  It is being dismissed as unproven, and unconvincing.

Another Pot Of Christian Tea

Portions of my June Anti-Religion rant were downloaded and republished by a different Christian apologist, with many of the same, silly, baseless arguments.

Woke Atheist Insists, “You have to accept it” | Shadow To Light (wordpress.com)

Woke Atheist insists, “We Just Have To Accept”

Archon’s Den replied:

Personal feelings, personal testimony, personal experience, intuition, etc. do NOT count as evidence, when applied to something outside yourself.  They are, however, the only valid way to know what is happening in anyone’s mind.  Lia could state that she is a Cincinnati Reds fan, a non-smoker, a vegetarian, and likes heavy metal music, and you have to accept that.  And if she says that she feels more like a girl than a guy despite the plumbing, just as she feels more like voting for Biden than Trump – that’s an objective proof.  You have to accept it, even if you are a dyed-in-the-wool Republican.  She is, and will remain, the best judge of what she thinks, feels, and believes.  She identifies as a female personality, trapped in a male body.

Did you notice that,” if she says that she feels more like a girl than a guy despite the plumbing, ….that’s an objective proof.  You have to accept it.”

No, it’s not an objective proof and I don’t “have to accept it.”  There are two common traits among human beings – deception and delusion.  It is NOT uncommon for people to lie nor is it uncommon for people to be deluded (have beliefs that don’t match reality). Therefore, it is possible that Thomas is lying, and if that is not the case, it is possible that Thomas is deluded. Archon’s Den would have us abandon these possibilities, as if they could never ever be true, and instead embrace Thomas’s claims on blind faith.

Let me demonstrate the complete absurdity of Archon’s Den’s position with a concrete example.

Consider this person: and presents a video of a young female who thinks that she is a bird, and uses ey/em/eir pronouns because birds don’t inherently have a gender. (Spoiler alertYes they do!)  And no one has the right to expect me to believe she is a bird.  Yet according to Archon’s logic, “You have to accept it.” 

I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Woke party!
I detest the whole woke movement.  I feel that it is an exaggerated extension of PC (Politically Correct.)  It is the chance for many people, who don’t know what they are talking about, and many of whom don’t have a dog in the fight, to make unsupported claims, and demand that others accept them – sort of like what you’re doing now.  To pretend that you know what I think and believe, and claim that I am a “Woke” Atheist shows that you are either deluded or lying.

What I don’t understand, is the fervent need to finely split Theological hairs on this subject, unless it’s to cover a religious bald spot in your argument.  It has nothing to do with the existence of God.  It’s just a bunch of self-righteous Christian bullies, again insisting on what others must say, do, or think.  The last time that became organized, it was called The Inquisition, and did not end well.

You must have been in a real hurry to jog past the ‘Judge not, lest ye be judged’ spot, which really has nothing to do with you.

As for your bird-brained little Gotcha….
So it’s rather amusing to realize that while woke atheist Archon insists there is “no evidence for god,” he/she believes that girl in the video is a bird (assuming Archon is intellectually sincere and practicing what he/she preaches).

Despite claiming that they read my post, it is apparent that they are still incapable, or unwilling, to understand and accept the differences between ‘Internal’ and ‘External – between ‘Objective’ and ‘Subjective,’ producing another instance of Deluded or Lying.

Lia never made the external claim that she WAS a woman, only that her soul (for those who believe in such foolishness) felt like a woman’s, in a male body.  Little Miss ey/em/eir claims that she IS a bird.  I am quite willing to be intellectually sincere, only if she flies up into a tree, builds a nest, and lays an egg.  That’s what I practice, but I never preach.

***

BTW:  On neither of these websites did I make the claim that there is no evidence for God.”  I have, in the past, said that there is “not sufficiently convincing evidence”, but that’s a grey horse of a different color.  😳

As a matter of fact, on neither of these websites did I state that I am an Atheist.  While not incorrect, that claim is unfounded.  All I did was question the linguistic and logic misusages.  I could have been an outraged Woke Christian.  This is divisive tribalism at its worst.  “If ya ain’t fer us, yer agin us!”   😈

’22 A To Z Challenge – O

I’ve been told to try to keep my posts family-friendly.  This post will be suitable for the Manson family, or the older, nearer Black Donnelly family.  I damned near shit a brick, a couple of years ago, when my son casually told me that, “They let Charles Manson out of prison.”  When I’d caught my breath, he continued, “It was feet first, but they let him out.”

I get a kick, listening to Christian Apologists loudly, firmly, declaiming in a religious debate, when it becomes obvious that they don’t know what they are talking about, and are wrong, but they desperately won’t accept it.  Today’s off-color word is

ONANISM

As The Princess Bride movie told us, I don’t think that means what you think it means.  Masturbation is not high on the list of Christian talking points, but it does get mentioned by a certain group.  From the time of the Bible, a faction of deeply insecure, (mostly) men, believe that there is some mystical power in sperm, and that it is a sin to ‘waste it on the ground,’ and rail about the evils of masturbation.

Strangely, this group usually also denounces female masturbation, even though there is no sperm involved.  They just don’t want anybody else to get some enjoyment, if they’re too tight-assed to get some themselves.  What are you using for birth control??  So far, just my personality.  They call it self-abuse, as if pain or physical damage were being inflicted.

The term originates with the story of Onan, who was forced to marry, and mate with, his brother’s widow.  Not wanting any possible child of his dead brother to be thought to be his, he withdrew at the point of ejaculation, and ‘spilled his seed upon the ground.’

I DON’T THINK THAT MEANS WHAT YOU THINK IT MEANS.

Therefore, Onanism is not the masturbation that Good Christians condemn, but rather, coitus interruptus.  I recently listened to a female caller denounce birth control, because she felt that, “All life is sacred, from conception to death.”  Hello!!!  Have you seen the definition of CONTRACEPTION’???!  Trance gender isn’t allowed by God – No, but stupidity and illiteracy are.

I was watching Women’s Olympic Beach Volleyball yesterday, and there was a wrist injury – but I’ll be okay to post again in a couple of days.  C U then.   😉  😎

Why Go To Church?


One Sunday morning, a mother went in to wake her son and tell him it was time to get ready for church, to which he replied, “I’m not going.”
“Why not?” she asked.
I’ll give you two good reasons,” he said. “(1) They don’t like me, and (2) I don’t like them.”
His mother replied, “I’ll give you two good reasons why you SHOULD go to church: (1) You’re 59 years old, and (2) you’re the pastor!”

***

The Picnic
A Jewish Rabbi and a Catholic Priest met at the town’s annual 4th of July picnic.
Old friends, they began their usual banter.
“This baked ham is really delicious,” the priest teased the rabbi. “You really ought to try it. I know it’s against your religion, but I can’t understand why such a wonderful food should be forbidden! You don’t know what you’re missing. You just haven’t lived until you’ve tried Mrs. Hall’s prized Virginia Baked Ham. Tell me, Rabbi, when are you going to break down and try it?”
The rabbi looked at the priest with a big grin, and said, “At your wedding.”

***

The Usher
An elderly woman walked into the local country church.
The friendly usher greeted her at the door and helped her up the flight of steps.
“Where would you like to sit?” he asked politely.
“The front row, please,” she answered.
“You really don’t want to do that,” the usher said. “The pastor is really boring.”
“Do you happen to know who I am?” the woman inquired.
“No,” he said.
“I’m the pastor’s mother,” she replied indignantly.
“Do you know who I am?” he asked.
“No,” she said.
“Good,” he answered.

***

Show And Tell
A kindergarten teacher gave her class a “show and tell” assignment.
Each student was instructed to bring in an object that represented their religion to share with the class.
The first student got up in front of the class and said, “My name is Benjamin and I am Jewish and this is a Star of David.”
The second student got up in front of the class and said, “My name is Mary. I’m a Catholic and this is a rosary.”
The third student got in up front of the class and said, “My name is Tommy. I am Methodist, and this is a casserole.”

***

Goat For Dinner
The young couple invited their elderly pastor for Sunday dinner.
While they were in the kitchen preparing the meal, the minister asked their son what they were having.
“Goat,” the little boy replied.
“Goat?” replied the startled man of the cloth, “Are you sure about that?”
“Yep,” said the youngster. “I heard Dad say to Mom, ‘Today is just as good as any to have the old goat for dinner’.”

Oh Lord, keep Your arm around my shoulder and Your hand over my big mouth!!!

***

Grandma is eighty-eight years old and still drives her own car. She writes:
Dear Grand-daughter,

The other day I went up to our local Christian book store and saw a ‘Honk if you love Jesus’ bumper sticker.

I was feeling particularly sassy that day because I had just come from a thrilling choir performance, followed by a thunderous prayer meeting.  So, I bought the sticker and put it on my bumper.  Boy, am I glad I did; what an uplifting experience that followed.  I was stopped at a red light at a busy intersection, just lost in thought about the Lord and how good he is, and I didn’t notice that the light had changed.

It is a good thing someone else loves Jesus because if he hadn’t honked, I’d never have noticed.

I found that lot of people love Jesus!

While I was sitting there, the guy behind started honking like crazy, and then he leaned out of his window and screamed, ‘For the love of God!’  ‘Go! Go! Go! Jesus Christ, GO!’

What an exuberant cheerleader he was for Jesus!

Walk This Way

We all do it, to some extent.  Christians do it more than Atheists.  What is IT??!

“IT” is to assume that other people think, feel, and act just like you do.

It is like comparing British English to American English.  The words are the same, but the conclusions they reach and the information they convey, are vastly different.  I think that I felt it, but I had it clearly pointed out to me by a young, Atheist YouTuber.

He had been raised as a fervent, evangelical Catholic.  In his teens, he began to question!!  By twenty, he admitted that he had become an Atheist.  His Bible-thumper Mother was appalled, and tried to lure/force him back.

First, she accused him of “Just blindly believing what those Atheist books say.”because she blindly believed in a book.  He explained that he had not read most of the books she was worried about, and the couple that he had, he had not read until after he had declared himself an Atheist.

While he had not read the evil Atheist books, and had arrived at his position through years of careful study and research, she then accused him of just unquestioningly accepting the non-religious claims of Atheists who establish themselves in authority – because she unquestioningly accepts the self-declared authority of The Catholic Church.

I recently listened to a Christian apologist try to wiggle out from under an Atheist complaint about the Christian concept of infinite punishment in Hell, for the finite crime of not believing.  His justification was that, the infinite punishment was not for merely not believing, but that Atheists die, and go to be judged, and are cast into Hell, and the infinite punishment is because, even in Hell, they continue to ‘deny God.’

I find this apologist scenario preposterous.  Any Atheist who dies, expecting to just fade out, who finds his spirit, his soul, his consciousness, his personality, still coherent and miraculously transported to Heaven, faces God, is condemned to Hell, and who is suffering horrible tortures – would admit to observed reality and accepted truth – not petulantly continue to ‘deny God,’ whatever that means.  But the Christian apologist believes that the Atheist would – because he would!

Frank Turek, a Christian debater, whose slick, used-car-salesman face beams down from the top of this post, was asked if there was any information or argument that might make him change his mind.  He responded with a Bible verse which orders the loyal to reject anything which might cause them to doubt.  No matter how reliable, proven, or convincing the facts and evidence are, Turek and his ilk will simply deny it!  😳

To even try for a non-believer to have a discussion with a Christian about morals/morality, seems doomed to failure.  It will not become a debate or a conversation.  It is like two solitudes, shouting past each other.

The Christian will allege that there are Objective Morals, things which are good or evil, whether or not people exist.  Without any evidence that either of them exists, they claim that God defines and enforces morals, despite the fact that great swathes of Good Christians disregard and disobey them, filling prisons, divorce courts and rehab facilities.

The very words morals, and morality have been hijacked by Christian debaters.  Like sin, they are something that their God wants mankind to do, or not do.  Atheists have ethics, and evolution-induced empathy.  If Atheists can get Christians to agree that reduction of harm and increase in happiness and wellbeing is an acceptable subjective basis, then we have Objective Atheist Morals, and all without God.

Apologists Haven’t A Brain In Their Heads

THAT is MY BRAIN!

At least that’s what the office told me when they gave me the disk of pictures. I have no other pictures of my brain with which to compare, and I’ve never seen my brain in person so as to recognize it from these hazy black and white pictures which I’m told came from a big magnet. It remains entirely possible that the pictures on that disk are pictures of somebody else’s brain.

Or that this is a Xerox image of something made entirely of playdough.(sic) I can’t prove that it’s not.

It may not be my brain on the disk, and in fact may not be pictures of anybody’s head at all but may be computer-generated. It’s not impossible.  Maybe the people with problems that require a brain-scan are the only ones who have brains.

In modern America VERY few people have even seen the inside of ANY mammal skull so as to see that there is a brain inside, let alone any human heads.  The number of medical and scientific personnel who claim to have seen inside a human head is a VAST minority of the total.  They except(sic) that we have sent what three or four rovers all the way to Mars and yet they don’t believe in God.

Atheists say that they have never seen God and that I have never seen God and they demand evidence.  They believe electrons exist, having never seen one. They believe the wind exists having never seen it. They believe gravity exists having never seen it. They believe in all kinds of things they have never seen. You know why? Because they’re not really skeptics. There are just some things they don’t want to believe, so they pretend that they are skeptics, when in fact, they are just rebellious sinners.

Except…. that the correct word is accept.  I would think that you would be familiar with one of the most important words of your faith system, considering the number of things that you are expected to blindly accept.  Perhaps you have never seen it in print, and are just taking someone else’s word for it.

Every med student in every medical college in the USA, Canada, and probably around the world, must assist in the dissection of a human cadaver.  The skull is sawed open.  The brain is removed and examined.  The same is true for most veterinary students, with a dog or cat.  This alone consists of tens of thousands of people each year.  And then there are abattoirs and meat-packing plants….

We can also include pathologists, and coroners and their assistants, and police officers and paramedics, who, too often, get to see human brains that didn’t need MRIs.  Until one of them finds a skull with no brain in it, I’m going to assume they all do, with the possible exception of yours.  They are a minority – but hardly a VAST one – totalling several million people.

While actually seeing God would be a good start to accepting His existence, not all evidence need be visual.  Do Christians have Faith that electrons exist?  Atheists accept that they do because they can see the actions they cause; televisions glow, cell phones communicate with each other, and ovens get hot.

Atheists (and everyone else) can feel the wind blow, and see its effects, from tornadoes, to kids’ kites flying, to wind turbines.  We don’t need to see the wind to know that it exists.  I can see gravity working every time I drop something.  It will accelerate toward the center of the Earth (or any other celestial body).

On Earth, its speed of fall will increase by 9.8 meters/second/squared.  It has done so each and every observed and measured time.  Only when a dropped pen starts drifting upward will I doubt the existence of gravity.  You can tell me that God makes my light bulbs shine or that angels hold my feet (and every other object) to the ground.  I will rely on reasonable expectations based on a history of testable and repeatable actions.

I will believe the hypotheses of reputable scientists, who have shown their work, rather than the far less coherent and parsimonious claims that Christians make.  I will believe in space/time curvature rather than angels.  Atheists often say that they have not been presented with sufficiently convincing evidence, but evidence is information which convinces, or tends to convince, regarding any given matter.  If it does not convince to some degree, it is not ‘evidence,’ it is just another unverified claim.

I want to believe the most true things, and the fewest false things as possible.  Despite your desperate attempt at mind-reading and fortune-telling, I am not a rebellious sinner!  After 2000 years of asking Christians for evidence, the best they seem to be able to come up with is, ‘You just have to have faith, and you won’t know until you die.’  That is unacceptable to me – no sin involved.  👿

’22 A To Z Challenge – K

 

I went looking for sauerkraut, –I don’t know why.  I should be able to smell it – and found a Cabbage-Head instead.

I am sometimes sooo… happy that I am saddled with the simple name of Smith, when I research the meanings of other people’s.

A reader made me aware of surname.com, but it only concentrates on English, Scottish and Irish names.  Bing has become more reliable, offering results from several sites.  One of them often does the job.  I also rely on Google Translate, though it does have its drawbacks.

I recently ran into a new, female blogger, who had married a man by the name of Kohlhepp.  This is a rare German name that I had never run into, here in ex-Berlin, Ontario.  I had to look it up.  The biggest problem with Google Translate, is that it does so literally, word by word, rather than idiomatically, with the meaning of the entire phrase or clause.

When I entered Kohlhepp, I got back cabbagejerk.  Now, does jerk mean a sharp tug, or is he the guy with the big desk in the corner office?  Another rare, local German name is Dreisinger.  I know that it means Three Singers – but which three?  The Magi??  Larry, Shemp and Moe??  A Christian-based name from a church choir??

I may snicker a bit to find that Kohlhepp is a cabbage harvester, but in Germany, that’s an important job.  Somebody gotta make all that sauerkraut.

Here in Canada, we have an up-and-coming Federal politician named Poilievre.  In French, pois are peas, and lievre is a form of ”lever,” which means to lift or raise.  If Tennessee Ernie Ford were still alive, he would Bless his little pea-pickin’ heart.

Flash Fiction # 286

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

ROCKIN’ UP

All society is a pendulum, from too strict, to too lax, and back again.  Our best hope is that the average is always upward.  The proof is here in Ed Sheeran’s Castle On The Hill-land.  Once, the rich, who stole from the weak and poor to get that way, built huge commanding castles on hilltops to keep others from stealing from them.

Nowadays, that service is provided by the IRS.  I am optimistic that American education will improve, and Trump-sponsored Christian willful ignorance and intolerance will begin to abate.  Castles are passé, but ‘Prepper Shelters’ are becoming all too common.

***

If you want to join the fun with the Friday Fictioneers, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site, and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.