Archive for the Religion Category

The way to argue with science

Posted in Global Warming, Religion on January 20, 2010 by jackpot12

I’ve pretty much had it listening to global warming deniers and creationists. They aren’t interested looking at the actual facts. They invent their own, and twist everything 180 degrees opposite of what the data imply. They rely on the fact that most people won’t examine any of the evidence themselves, accepting anything thrown into the wind as having an equal likelihood of being true as anything else.  When thoroughly debunked, they just continue spouting the debunked idea as if nothing happened. This video illustrates the phenomenon (which should be named, classified and studied).

Here is how the phenomenon works with the global warming “debate” and the most popular attack piece from denialists.

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Parliament of the World’s Religions

Posted in Religion with tags on November 29, 2009 by jackpot12

Congress of world Religions 1893

It’s that time of year everyone! The parliament of world religions will be held in Melbourne Australia in a couple of weeks and Andrew “Sasha Baron” Cohen will be on hand to police the madness thanks, according to his blog, to a “generous donor”. You may recall last issue of Enlightenext magazine where Cohen was pleading for donations to save his magazine, and thus- the earth, from certain ruin. The life savings of his disgruntled former apostles has apparently been devoured by the Lord’s work.

It’s nice to see how far religion has advanced since 1893.

 

Parliament of World's Religions 2009

Cohen’s impossible quest to override the human amygdala and limbic system to “evolve” a species of “God-Men” through concentrative group medibation sessions (meditative masturbation) is about as promising for “evolving” the human soul as the penis pump is for male enhancement. No amount of wishing will turn a cat into a dog, a chimp into a human, or a human into a god-man. This is because humans have brains, and brains are very limited and faulty organs which are literally organized in such a way as to ensure that god-men can’t exist. One can’t not be human. Cohen blurs the definition of “evolution” and imagines some hazy mind/matter intelligent design interaction which will speed the process of literally reorganizing human neurology through some kind of intent over coming generations. Good luck bub, it won’t happen. Your organization will turn to historical dust and end in misery and failure just like every one of your predecessors. But have fun. I’ll grab some popcorn and watch you prove my point, again, and again and again.

Bubba Battle Royale and Reminiscences of a Placebo Priest

Posted in Religion, Science & Spirituality with tags , , on November 21, 2009 by jackpot12

Samuel Harris, Chistopher Hitchens, and Daniel Dennett debate a flock of orangutans including Dinesh D’Souza, perhaps the only one worthy of debate among them. Amazingly Bubba Wright was invited and makes a guest appearance before the 50 minute mark. Given a choice which side to be on, Bubba Wright, the author of the most anti-human work ever scribed in any language, (with the possible exception of Mein Kampf and Straw Dogs by John Gray) “The Moral Animal”, decided to be on the side of the believers! But made it clear that he disagreed with everyone there- believers and atheists. Quite fascinating. Our theory is maintained- that Robert Wright’s crystal clear and masterful description of the human predicament in TMA drove him to subclinical temporal lobe epilepsy and the graphophilia so plainly demonstrated in his recent copious canons.

Daniel Dennett talks about people who go to seminary school and decide the bible is bunk after learning things they were never taught in Sunday school. He says “Some walk away, and those are the lucky ones.” And some stay. This struck a chord with me as it brought memories of my first trimester of Chiropractic school where I learned things I did not know before and was mildly tempted to leave the school. Everyone easily talked me out of it and 97,000 dollars and a 6.8% interest rate with years of no income later, my life is permanently financially lost, barring the act of winning the lottery or gold-digging a spouse. Mormons are cheap. I tithe 20% to Nelnet student loan corporation, a company of scam artists riddled with controversy. I had the great misfortune of getting double spinning backfisted by the invisible hand by imparting my two greatest financial transactions through the criminal institutions of “Nelnet” and “Countrywide”. I will spend decades providing cashflow for some fat slobbering prick for a nearly useless education which took 3.5 years to aquire. As Michael Shermer would attest- the concept of the “student loan” is one of the many bitch slaps from the invisible backhand of supercapitalism where the hand holds you underwater- for 25 years. I would much prefer a system where merit is based on test scores and education is provided freely to those who qualify only, as they do in say Switzerland.

By 70% of the way through Chiropractic school, there was not one single person I knew who did not realize that what they thought they were getting into was not what they did get into. Some walked away after graduation. Maybe those were the lucky ones. They were also the devastated ones. Dennett masterly explains how priests talk to each other different than how they are trained to talk in front of the congregation. In the same respect, a typical conversation between Chiropractic students often went something like, “I don’t have any idea what I’m doing do you?” . “No”. Then to the patient – “here’s exactly what I’m going to do and here is exactly what is going to happen.”

Ahh, placebo priests in training.

I bring this up because when your paycheck requires you to maintain a particular belief, you are not free to *consider* the opposing views seriously. Priests, homeopaths, acupuncturists, all selling bankrupt ideas that ironically help certain people feel better despite having no factual basis in reality to speak of. The more studies coming out to show that homeopathy does nothing at all, the more popular it becomes.

My genes did not provide an internal milieux capable of inhabiting that world. I am convinced that my form of reason is a genetic mutation, or perhaps a variant, not something natural selection found useful to dole out in large part to each dancing, drinking, drugging and fellating member of the small orgiastic tribal hedonists our species evolved from. And for that I’ve suffered tremendously.

Book of Genesis Illustrated

Posted in Religion on November 5, 2009 by jackpot12

cover You can see some examples and an interview here.

I just wish he would do Leviticus. Please R. Crumb illustrate Leviticus.

I will buy the hardcover and put it on my coffee table.

The perils of actually believing your scriptures

Posted in Gay & Lesbian Issues, Religion on November 1, 2009 by jackpot12

I believe most Christians in America today would denounce those who hold up signs about God hating fags. I like the statement in this video, its okay to have a fifth grade view of god as long as you are in the fifth grade.

What Christians deny is that their scriptures were written from a fifth grade perspective, or even less. A bright modern fifth grader knows more about the universe and the nature of planet earth than the scriptural authors from millennia past describing the “4 corners”. What they deny in their never ending capacity for self-deception and politically correct denialism, is that their modern view of “god” constructed by post-modernism, pluralism, civil rights, modern cosmology, and a computer with instant access to virtually any piece of knowledge garnered through history a mere 2 seconds away (and a painfully long 2 seconds), did not come about by reading their scriptures more closely or understanding their scriptures more thoroughly. It came about by ignoring large swathes of their scriptures outright and reinterpreting vast tracts of it to their own liking to avoid the pain of cognitive dissonance, and the alienation from their peers.

Did you catch that masterfull piece of editing – the man reading a passage from the bible “they shall be put to death, their blood is upon them”, and then an immediate cut to a black woman who says “I am going to read the passage very differently than someone who might be white male and straight.”

Right, there is soooo much room for symbolic reinterpretation here. They didn’t *really* mean it did they?

Why an educated modern uses the Western religions as a basis for their spiritual inquiry to this day baffles me. There is way better available now. We in the civilized world are a more advanced and moral people as a whole, despite not having a universally accepted national religious institution to help us justify our exploitation of others. The Eastern religions are vastly better as a whole than the Western, which is not to deny them of their silly superstitions (and not to deny that some Christian mystics reached the same conclusions).

These archaic Western religions are a cage for intellect. The reason people still use them as their spiritual base is fear and cultural imperative. Anyone who has read the old testament with any degree of belief was shaking in their boots at the capricious and whimsical wrath of the LORD. For those who grew up under the tyranny of this imaginary being, it is a leap of courage to just consider dismissing the slave driver. Particularly when the LORD’s son was so much nicer of a guy.

These people carrying signs in this video are surely being more true to the letter of their scriptures than the liberal Christianists who stopped being honest about what their scriptures actually say long ago. No matter how tolerant, pluralistic and modern Christians become, their scriptures remain printed the same way in the same book for all to inspect. And when they brave a wade through the passages of Leviticus and see that indeed, in no uncertain or symbolic terms whatsoever god *does* hate fags, I wonder when it will finally give them pause. I wonder when they will finally give it up and move on. To stand on one’s own feet and realize that you are more moral, more enlightened than your own god, your own tradition. And no amount of mental gymnastics or cross-eyed reading is going to magically make those scriptures fit into what you have become.

Ahh……The Irony of it All

Posted in Opinion, Politics & Religion, Religion with tags , , , on May 2, 2009 by jackpot12

who-would-jesus-torture_spWASHINGTON (CNN) —” The more often Americans go to church, the more likely they are to support the torture of suspected terrorists, according to a new analysis.

More than half of people who attend services at least once a week — 54 percent — said the use of torture against suspected terrorists is “often” or “sometimes” justified. Only 42 percent of people who “seldom or never” go to services agreed, according the analysis released Wednesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.”

If rallying behind Sarah Palin proves that a large percentage of conservatives are more interested in the preservation of their end-times anarchical cult than they are the country itself, then the increased support of torture among Church goers proves that the very same people are more interested in the preservation of their cultish nationalistic traditionalism than the actual spirit of the religion they profess to adhere to itself.

Everywhere a religion goes it gets altered by culture. China developed Zen from Buddhism, and that turned into a more militant Zen when it went to Japan. When Buddhism came to America it became just another ala carte new age grab-bag discipline, sort of exemplified by an attitude of “I’ll adhere to the strict guidelines when I feel like it, then complain about my karma and past lives when I don’t, please pass the chips”.

When Christianity came to a hyper-capitalistic society with a vast military industrial complex larger than the entire economies of other nations, guess what happened to Christianity? Any adolescent future historian would be able to cover the answer with his hand and guess correctly without looking. It managed to morph into the exact opposite of the figurehead’s clear and plain words. The prosperity gospel. Overt nationalism. Blind defense of questionable military strategies, an increased acceptance of torture above and beyond the rest of the population. like clock work.

“Amerika” (wave flag here)  is the new Christianity. To these pseudo-conservatives, “Amerika” defined by their warped fantastic reconstructions of history,  their copious and convenient memory lapses, obfuscations, selective dissection of facts, along with their hallucinatory pastel images of the perfect 50’s and the beautiful land of god-fearing neighborhoods, has become more important than Christianity itself. Christianity is nothing but a plastic decal which represents something far more important underneath- the religion of Amerika. Where the good guys are pure good and the bad guys are pure evil. Where it’s good to strive for slovenliness, to be proud of gluttonous excess, and to attend church regularly. Where it’s good to feel like you’re really cool and rebellious by saying the ice is increasing in the North Pole even when you know it isn’t. To say evolution is a conspiracy when you know it isn’t. To say that despite knowing what we know now Iraq was still a good idea when you know it wasn’t. And to be able to read and defend the sermon on the mount with a straight face yet pretend that the use of torture is okay and compatible with Christianity… despite knowing since the days you slobbered on wooden alphabet blocks in the most cursory of Sunday school classes …  that it absolutely isn’t.

But Christianity is not the important part of the conservative religion. Amerika is the religion. Christianity is an artifactual tag-along relic. And this is why this article should frighten people. When the nationalism and religionism of a people skittering on the brink of economic meltdown is no longer remotely associated with any real moral high ground, any form of evil in the name of good is possible. The same people with the creativity vast enough to persuade themselves that evolution is not true and that ice at the North Pole is on the increase, are capable of believing other more atrocious things with atrocious consequences. It has happened before by the same people we are now, and it can be triggered again.