Forest, Meet Trees

Bible

What a damned bunch of hypocrites!

Whenever I read an article which describes a conflict between a branch of religion and the public at large, I’m often struck by the hypocrisy shown. It is difficult to know whether it’s honest, gullible, naïve, ‘have faith and believe what I tell you’, or the more serious, intentional lie to save face and retain control.

Some Bishops have sharply criticized proposed guidelines to help transgender students in schools. The Education Minister says he had a ‘frank conversation’ with Calgary Bishop Fred Henry.  Henry has called the Province ‘totalitarian’, pursuing what he calls ‘narrow-minded, anti-Catholic ideology’.

Imagine the nerve of the Province, telling the Church that they can hate the sin, but have to help the sinner. The very thought of the Catholic Church accusing any other organization of being totalitarian and narrow-minded just has me on the floor.
Kettle….->….Pot!  Pot….->….Kettle!  That one’s gotta show up in the highlight reel on the Comedy Channel.

PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS

But I’d be willing to bet that, if the government declared abortion illegal, banned the sale of contraceptives, and rescinded the law allowing divorces, the good Bishop would not find that totalitarian and narrow-minded .

***

A letter to the Editor, defending a controversial columnist’s right to an unpopular opinion, recalled the writer’s first-ever letter of complaint about her.

I was so mad I swore I would never read The Record again. The article concerned a young man handing out Christian literature at a local high school.
She thought it was wrong; I thought it was right….
By the way, after 25 years, I still think the kid was doing the right thing at the school.

And I’m also pretty sure that if it had been Jewish tracts, or Muslim literature, or Atheist promotion being handed out, he wouldn’t have thought the kid was doing the right thing at the school.

Oh, those poor beleaguered Catholics/Christians. (Insert sarcasm here.)  Non-Catholics and non-Christians object to being treated poorly.  If our children only get one side of a story, it is not education – we could call that propaganda – or being bullied into one way of thinking. Protestants protested, and separated from the Catholic Church so that they had freedom of thought and worship.  They have no plans to give that up.   😈

Advertisements

The Torture Of Faith

(Not too) recently, I read of Boko Haram, or ISIS, torturing 23 young children to death. I don’t know what menace six-year-olds can be, to bullies armed with AK-47s. If you feel the kids must die, at least do it quickly and cleanly. Afford them the dignity that you lack.

On the same day, a television station reran the movie, The DaVinci Code, in which a character slams down a copy of Malleus Maleficarum (Witches’ Hammer), a handbook The Inquisition used, to torture and burn thousands of innocents, most of them women.

Malleus Maleficarum

I had to read this thing, so I contacted my library. They didn’t have a copy, but obtained one for me on inter-library loan, from Toronto. The book was originally written in 1647, and I got a 40 year old paperback version, identical to the one in the movie, if more used and worn. It was composed about the same time as the King James Bible, full of ‘thee and thou’. It was a struggle to get through it in the 3-week loan period, but I managed.

The subtitle should have been, “How To Inflict Excruciating Pain For Fun And Profit.” The Church seized all property of those found guilty. Some Inquisitors skimmed a bit off for themselves, while others merely benefited through the enrichment of their organization.

I opened it up and started reading. Immediately, the lies, hypocrisy, mistaken assumptions and unprovable claims began. On page 1, clear as crystal, it said, “Magic exists. It was created by God in the beginning with all else, but He does not wish mankind to use it. Anyone who practices magic, allies with Satan.”

On page 3, just as clearly, it said, “Magic does not exist. It is merely apparent, only believed to exist by the faithful.” On page 5, the yo-yo now claimed that, “Magic does exist, but its effects are ephemeral and transient. If ignored, soon all will return to God’s intended state.”

I don’t know who the book was intended to convince, the writer, the commoners, from whom unfortunate victims were plucked, The Church/Pope, or the secular Royalty. Presumption of innocence just didn’t exist. “Hang ‘the witch’ by her thumbs for a day.” She’s already been convicted, but the ritual must be observed, so that ‘legal’ confiscation can proceed.

“If a Dark Witch do evil by Black Magic, find a White Witch to reverse the spell – then quickly burn them both to death.” “Have the Witch’s friends to tell her that if she confesses her sins, you will be merciful. If this does not avail, tell the Witch yourself that you will be merciful – holding in mind that you will be merciful unto The Church and the King, from whom you hold obedience and loyalty.” No lie was too big, or too devious.

The Catholic Church even had the temerity to declare, “No-one convicted of heresy by The Inquisition, was later found to be innocent.” largely because any friend or relative who protested, was subjected to the same torture and execution.

“Ask the witch why she does not cry for her sins. Watch carefully to see that she does not use spittle to wet her cheeks.” She did not cry for her sins, because she committed none, and modern science knows that a body under stress cannot cry.

You might think that a person in agony might choose quick death to end the prolonged torment, but even here, The Inquisition cheated. If you confessed, you had to swear to God that your confession was true. Anyone lying to God was sent to Hell, so Inquisitors were granted more time to play their sick games. An innocent person was believed protected from pain by faith in God. That worked so well in everyday life.

For anyone who wants to play the No True Scotsman game, and claim that these were not ‘real Christians’ or ‘Good Catholics’ – during the worst of the Inquisition, a Bishop went from city to city, marking down the ingenious ways the locals had of inflicting pain. The book was copied and sent back to the various areas, so that others could benefit. When this was done, the Bishop traveled to Rome, and the Pope blessed both him and his vile book.

A Scottish sea captain delivered a cargo to Madrid. While he was on the streets, looking for another cargo, he was snatched and imprisoned. He was held for three days without food or water. He was flogged, and stretched on the rack. Joints and bones in his hands and feet were broken. He was seared with red-hot irons, and cut with knives. Pieces of skin and flesh were torn off his body, and finally he was subjected to the medieval equivalent of water-boarding.

When he managed to survive all these indignities, he was thrown, naked and broken, back out onto the street. No questions were asked. No accusations were made. No confession was extracted. These Dominican Servants of God merely wanted the practice.

A king of Sweden wished to marry a particular lady, but the court advisors were against his choice. Perhaps they felt her virtue was questionable, or maybe they knew that she would undermine their influence with the king. They claimed that she was a witch, who had ensorcelled his mind, and demanded that she be ‘Put To The Question.’ (Tortured)

This was usually enough to make someone back off, but she and the King persisted. The test was to grasp a red-hot iron bar in both hands, and walk three measured paces. It was reported that she took the three paces, stopped, took another three paces, and demanded, “Is there more you would have me do?”

Cynical me sees gold changing hands, the castle torturer being told that he might become a customer of his replacement, and the recording priest reminded that he could suffer a fatal accident. Or maybe they both just loved the king and his lady, and hated the devious courtiers. The lady became Queen Gertrude, and almost everyone lived happily ever after.

A hundred years later, Swedes were so taken by the story of the virtuous maid, protected from pain and evil by God, that it was declared a miracle, and she became Saint Gertrude. Oy! 😳

#486

Some Religious Thoughts

“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” – Epicurus circa 300 BCE

I’ve heard of Christians evolving into Atheists.  Is that possible?

What Would Jesus Do?

Teacher: And remember, boys and girls; always ask yourself ‘What would Jesus do?’

Student #1: Make my friends drink my blood, like a vampire?

Teacher: What?

Student #2: And eat my flesh, like a cannibal?!

Teacher: Wait –

Student #3: Vilify my own people?

Teacher: Now, hold on –

Student #4: Condone slavery? Jesus condoned slavery.

Teacher: Hang on. What I mean is –

Student #5: Rebel against authority and wind up being executed?

Teacher: Look, it’s not about –

Student #6: I have an uncle called Jesus.

Teacher: Oh… Okay…?

Student #6: He sells drugs in Mexico.

Teacher: Forget it.

Ten Reasons Why Gay Marriage Is Wrong

Being gay is not natural – because Americans always reject un-natural things, like eyeglasses, polyester and air-conditioning.

Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay – in the same way hanging around tall people encourages them to be tall.

Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior.  People will even want to marry their pets – because a dog has legal standing, and can sign a marriage contract.

Straight marriage has been around for a long time, and hasn’t changed at all – women are still property, blacks can’t marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed – the sanctity of Brittany Spears’ 55 hour, just-for-fun marriage, and Larry King’s 10 weddings will be destroyed.

Straight marriages are valid because they produce children – gay couples, infertile couples and seniors should not be allowed to marry – because our orphanages aren’t full yet, and the world needs more children.

Gay parents will obviously raise gay children – because straight parents raise only straight children.

Gay marriage is not supported by religion.  In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are inflicted on the entire nation.  That’s why we have only one religion in the world.

Children can only succeed if there is a male and a female role model in the home – that’s why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise kids.

Gay marriage will change the foundation of society – we could never adapt to new social norms, like we failed to adapt to cars, the service-sector economy and longer life-spans.

___________________________________________________

During the recent flooding in Alberta, a man took refuge from the rising water on the roof of his house.  A guy in a canoe came along and asked him if he wanted a ride.  He said No, that he was a good Christian, who believed that God would save him.  As the flood waters rose, two men in a motorboat came by and offered to rescue him.  Again, he stated his faith in God, and waved them on their way.

With the waters lapping at the eaves of his house, a helicopter flew over.  He told them to look for others, because he was sure that God would spare him.  Of course, he was swept to his death.

When he arrived at Heaven, he had the audacity to castigate God Himself.  “I believed in You.  I’ve been a good and obedient Christian.  How could You abandon me, and let me die??”  All-forgiving God quietly replied, “I sent you a canoe, a motorboat, and a helicopter.  What more did you wish Me to do?”

The reality is, that’s not really a joke!

The 10 Commandments: A Parody Written in 3 minutes

1. Thou shalt have no other gods before me… Because you know, I, God, am a jealous little controlling psychopath. 

2. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image… But if you must, please, Instagram that shit. 

3. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain… Jesus Fucking Christ, do I really need to be telling you idiotic cows this? 

4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy… Unless the football game is on, then fuck it! 

5. Honour thy father and thy mother… because you ruined their sex life the moment you were conceived.

6. Thou shalt not kill… Only I, the Almighty, can do that – especially the homos, kill the bum boys! 

7. Thou shalt not commit adultery… But by all means, take a few wives, heck, chain the bitches up and call them “concubines”. 

8. Thou shalt not steal… because stealing a loaf of bread is worst than rape, which is absolutely fine by the way. 

9. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour… Once again, this neighbour shit is way more important than rape and pedophilia.

10. Thou shalt not covet… because you can see, but you can’t touch. 😉

Good Intentions, Misguided Planning

A family of five left Arizona, moved to San Diego, bought a sailboat, and got into trouble on the high seas.  Now, I can think of a couple of places where the average knowledge about sailing would be lower than Arizona.

Two, thirtyish parents, a 3 year-old girl, his father, and she gave birth to another daughter while they spent 91 days, without setting foot on land.  Not members of any denomination, they described themselves as “good Christians”, who didn’t believe in abortion and homosexuality in  ”the state-controlled church.”

Storms damaged their boat, and blew it off course – off almost anybody’s course.  They drifted for weeks, and were rescued by the helicopter of a Venezuelan fishing boat, where they spent five days, before being transferred to a Japanese cargo vessel, where they spent another three weeks, before landing in Chile.

They had “decided to take a leap of faith, and see where God took us.”  God gave them a slap up-side the head, for endangering themselves and others, including two tiny children, and put them back where they belonged, in Arizona.  Do they accept God’s guidance and care, and their own stupidity, and blind arrogance?  Yeah, right!  Now they talk of having to “come up with a new plan.”

Serious comments only please!  I am not attacking or vilifying.  I wish discussion, not a flamewar.  If you are angry, you’re not thinking, only reacting, and probably with someone else’s opinion.  Respectful disagreement is welcomed, but prove your point.