’21 A To Z Challenge – U

 

 

I want to believe as many true things, and as few false things, as I can.
I want my internal, mental world-view to match observed reality as closely as possible.

The wife claims that, in the last 5 or 10 years, I have become intolerant and nasty toward religion and Christianity.

I think that it’s just that I’ve been more and more exposed to people who believe – and want me to believe – religious positions based on observably false claims, and I’m just getting more chances to express my discontent.

The wife’s Catholic Father died of cancer when she was 13.  He was sick for 5 years.  His teen-aged children cared for him for a year, but he was moved to the Catholic hospital, and given palliative care for 3 years.  Hospices did not exist back then, and hospitals finally realized that they could not afford to take up space with someone who would not recover.  He was discharged, to die at home.

At the end of the fifth year, he was terminal.  Four times, the local Catholic priest had to put on his cassock, and come over in the middle of the night, to give him last rites.  The first time, he rallied.  Two weeks later, the priest was back with another serving of last rites.  Again, he rallied.  Two weeks later, the tired priest made a third late-night house-call.  Once more, he rallied, but the end was inevitable.

The wife told me that, on his final visit, the priest gave her Father, not the last rites, but

EXTRA MUNCTION

I had been exposed in my youth to Baptist, Presbyterian, United, Pentecostal and Anglican, but not much Catholic.  I knew that The Church had all kinds of rites and rituals, and amulets, and potions, and spells, but I’d never heard of MUNCTION.  I asked, “What the Hell is munction?  Why did he need any, much less, extra??  Is it some kind of herbal remedy, or an opiate to ease his suffering??”

“I don’t know, but he must have needed it, because the priest gave him some extra.”   😯

Years later, I was reading a book about a Catholic who was dying, and the priest attended him, to give him

Extreme UNCTION

noun Roman Catholic Church.
anointing of the sick.
From: unction
an act of anointing, especially as a medical treatment or religious rite.
an unguent or ointment; salve.
something soothing or comforting.

I can’t fault the wife.  Shortly after that, she left the Church because she asked questions that they wouldn’t/couldn’t answer, so she didn’t get the complete indoctrination into the arcane, magical, mystical, mythical, mumbo-jumbo.  I have talked to other people who have been Catholics all their lives, but are no better informed about the Church’s tenets and ceremonies.  From the wife’s aggressive defense, even half a century later, I don’t think that she’s shed all the propaganda, but has obvious discomfort at my criticisms and doubts.

I am strangely reminded of the ‘60s British comedy movie, Carry On Doctor, which revolves around a hospital ward, with 8 stereotypical English males.  One is the brash, loud-mouthed know-it-all, who irritates fellow patients and staff alike.  Finally, a long-suffering nurse tells him to roll on his stomach, and get up on his knees.  She is going to take his temperature rectally.

He hoists his butt into the air, and something slender, round and cool is inserted.  Almost immediately, The Matron enters the ward, and demands to know from him, why his jiggly bits are hanging out in the breeze.  He says, “Have you never seen a man having his temperature taken?”  She replies, “Yes.  Many times.  But never with a daffodil!”   😯  😳  Just go along with it, because someone who claims to have authority, tells you to do something ultimately meaningless, no matter how foolish you look in the end.

It is difficult to take Christian Apologists, and their claims and arguments, seriously, when it appears obvious that there is something going on behind their…. back, and they have no idea that it’s happening, or what it is.

’21 A To Z Challenge – I

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well, let me tell you about Ahab the Arab.  Or you could just click on that title, and let Crazy Ray Stevens tell the story.

Ahab claims that he snuck into Fatima’s tent, and….

There he saw Fatima layin’ on a zebra skin rug with Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes and a bone in her nose ho, ho.  There she was, friends, lyin’ there in all her radiant beauty, eating on a raisin, grape, apricot, pomegranate, bowl of chitterlin’s, two bananas, three Hershey bars, sipping on a RC co-cola listenin’ to her transistor, watchin’ the Grand Ole Opry on the tube, readin’ a Mad Magazine while she sung, “Does your chewing gum lose it’s flavor? “Ahab doesn’t mention me being there, but I was.  I was giving Fatima lessons in being

INDOLENT

Having or showing a disposition to avoid exertion; slothful:
inactive or relatively benign:
slow, inactive, sluggish, torpid.

Maybe Ahab figured that I was a eunuch.  Perhaps he thought that I was just another overstuffed pillow.  It’s hard – literally – being indolent on a zebra-skin rug.  The sand underneath is very unforgiving, and it gets into some uncomfortable places.  I said to Fatima, right after she got back from giving the Sultan a lube job, that we were in Persia – try to get the Great Camel-Chaser to provide some softer Persian rugs.

There was a lot more fruit in that bowl before Fatima got back.  If I’m going to be obese, I’m going to do it the healthy way.  Chocolate is bad for my complexion, and R C Cola???!!….  They say that Coke can be used to remove rust from cars, but the government should stockpile    R C Cola in case some of the UFOs they are studying turn out to be extraterrestrial.  A high-velocity spray of that stuff can repulse aliens, and destroy their craft.

COVID shutdowns are finally being relaxed.  I’m not quite as relaxed about that, but Oktoberfest is on its way, and I’m practicing my impersonation of Roll Out The Barrel.  I’ll trundle back over and publish another fascinating post on Wednesday – right after I snitch another fig from that bowl.  😉

Bible Man Speak With Forked Tongue

Bible

Once again, I have found Christian Apologetics, the new Defenders of the Faith, doing exactly what they accuse Atheists, Agnostics, and other doubters of doing.  In the past year, I’ve seen at least three Christian blogs critical of a list of Atheist statements.  While each is composed slightly differently, the list of Atheist sins in each, is cut and paste identical.

It is undeniable that they often put forth nearly identical catch-phrases and responses. I mean, just ask yourself how often you heard these Atheist talking points:

  • There is no evidence for God;
  • God is not great;
  • Religion poisons everything;
  • Faith means believing something without evidence;
  • Atheism is just a lack of belief;
  • If you don’t believe in evolution, you’re a fool;
  • If everything has a cause, then what caused God;
  • That’s just a God of the Gaps argument;
  • Well, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence;
  • Religion is just wish-fulfillment;
  • Jesus is a zombie;
  • Metaphysics is bunk, I believe in what works;
  • I want evidence, not arguments;
  • God is just a delusion;
  • Religion is a mind virus;
  • Why doesn’t God heal amputees; and, finally
  • God is evil or a dictator or a maniac.

And these are just some of the catch-phrases that are routinely put forward by Atheists.

It wasn’t until I happened upon this soap opera evil twin triplet, that I realized I had a theme to rant about.  All three of them, and lots of others I’ve read, just complain about not wanting to encounter the routine list of Atheist denials of their unproven claims.

Amusingly, what they all seem to hope for, and invite, are newer, different, more creative and inventive, but easier to dismiss, arguments.  Like what??!  I don’t want to believe in God because he might be Scottish, wearing a kilt, and I don’t want to look up his skirt.  There’s enough big pricks down here on Earth.

I also noticed that, aside from whining about not wanting to be constantly faced with this list of reasons not to believe their claims, none of them actually did anything to refute any of it.  ‘Go ahead, prove the list wrong.  Offer proof of rebuttal for a couple of these claims – not Faith, or Belief – actual, provable facts.’  While a couple of the Atheist points are a bit aggressive, or colloquial, they all appear valid.  Religion poisons everything??  “I’ll gladly book you a trip to ISIS territory.  Take it up with them.”  If they want better rebuttals, they’re going to have to provide better claims, which are based more on evidence, rather than just their faith-based opinions.

Those who are firm in their faith seem willing to nod sagely and ignore all Atheist arguments.  It seems though, that the more unsure and insecure these Apologetics are, the louder and more frantic their wails are.

On that great Cosmic Scorecard in the sky, which they’re sure that Someone is keeping, having even the slightest doubt will get them sent to Hell.  Atheists’ arguments cause doubt, so they just want them to shut up.  What they’re doing is, trying to make it my job to ensure that they go to Heaven.  I’m too busy sinning and having no morals (according to them) to get around to that.  To Hell with them!  😉

Flash Fiction #99

Three Pigs

Thanks to Piya Singh for this week’s photo prompt

BIG BLOWHARD

When the Big Bad Wolf blew down the house of straw, that Piggy ran to his brother’s house of sticks. The Wolf blew down the house of sticks, and they both ran to their older brother’s house of….??!

“Bricks are too expensive; I used free fieldstone; it’s much stronger!”

The Big Bad Wolf said, “I’m going to huff and puff, and blow that house down.”

The third Piggy replied, “Not today, bitch!” He stuck a 12-gauge SPAS shotgun out the tiny window and blew the wolf away.

They all lived happily ever after, with their feet on a wolf-skin rug.

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I wanted to include a line about, “This State’s got a Stand Your Ground Law.”, but a word limit is a word limit.  You’ll just have to imagine it.  😆

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Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple website and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.