Archive for the ‘organized religion’ Category

so sue me

September 24, 2011

Religious belief is a personal matter. I cringe at those who don’t act from that fact.

if

August 29, 2011

If this Holy Man is correct, I have a confession to make as Nanmadol closes in on Taiwan. I support same-sex marriage and have contributed to this supernatural disaster. I have visited New York before but in my defense, I haven’t spent much time there. Probably others are more to blame than me for that.

The Christian Family Lynch Network

November 18, 2009

wants to legalize their hatred in Uganda.

when DIY shouldn’t cut it

October 28, 2009

Botched:

The man’s lawyer, Doug Christie, tr[ied] to have the case tossed out on constitutional grounds, saying his religious motive negated any criminal intent.

Thrown out? A legal system has failed if “religious motive” can excuse such an act. I can buy the lack of criminal intent, but that’s only through an insanity defence. At the very least, the man needs to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

On a related but inconsequential note, I don’t understand why (especially in this day and age) some parents have their sons circumcised. I have heard several arguments but don’t find any of them compelling. Perhaps a medical condition could set in necessitating the procedure, but I’m referring to an otherwise healthy child.

evolution is not religion

August 31, 2009

Brad Pollitt, a Missouri high school assistant superintendent, makes a bad call having band members turn in promotional t-shirts utilizing the theme of evolution. Mr. Pollitt caved to fear from parent complaints as evidenced by this faulty reasoning:

Pollitt said the district is required by law to remain neutral where religion is concerned.

The problem here is that evolution has nothing to do with religion. It’s science. While some religious cranks perceive science as a threat to their beliefs, that doesn’t make science anything other than science. Pollitt goes on to say,

If the shirts had said ‘Brass Resurrections’ and had a picture of Jesus on the cross, we would have done the same thing

Here Pollitt properly uses a religious example but his analogy fails in that evolution is not religious commentary. Hopefully Pollitt will wake up and apologize for letting the fundamentalists bully him to censorship.

iraqi gays tortured and killed

August 17, 2009

Sadrist Sheik Ammar al-Saadi would like to distance himself from the murderers. He denies involvement in the killings. He states that he and other clerics “only urged people to stop practicing homosexuality”. Here al-Saadi is blind to the fact that his general attitude forms the platform from which the killers justify their actions. While holding such beliefs regarding homosexuality is not (and should not be) against the law, society’s sane must work to expose such dangerous bigotry through education. These views stimulate conflict and suffering for many.

prayer != medical attention

August 2, 2009

Sad news out of Wisconsin as a father allows his 11-year-old daughter to die from an undiagnosed case of diabetes. The core of his defence was as follows:

God promises in the Bible to heal. If I go to the doctor, I am putting the doctor before God. I am not believing what he said he would do.

While I don’t buy Skydaddy stories, I can’t help but wonder why some who do don’t spin that belief in their favor. For instance, God gave us the brains to learn about our bodies and their well-being. With this gift from God, some even become gurus (i.e. doctors) and become the aid we can seek to deal with complex health problems. Silly, but a much more practical and useful outlook.

Unfortunately, Mr. Neumann substituted medical attention with prayer and his Bible – of which he apparently had a warped and literal take on certain passages therein. His defence lawyer says they will appeal the guilty verdict. However, one may wonder why. After all, isn’t going to a lawyer putting the lawyer before God? If there is innocence, won’t God take care of Mr. Neumann and protect him from injustice?

“the top position”

May 25, 2008

On a whim, we took the High Speed Rail to Tainan and spent the night. We visited Chihkan Tower. On the site is a statue of Kui-Xing, believed by some to be a servant deity of a “God of Literature” named Wen-Chang.

Kui Xing, servant of Wen Chang

By the statue were many of what appeared to be student identity cards hanging near a sign that explained the motivation of those who worship (click to enlarge and read).

Sign Explaining Worship

While we observed the surroundings, a young gentleman walked in and faced the statue. With his hands together and head prostrated, he muttered with intensity. He then gazed at the sculpture with a hint of desperate hope and left. Elsewhere on site, a shoal competed for food human visitors paid 10NT for to toss into the human-made pool.

Shoal of Fish

Einstein: smarter than he let on

May 15, 2008

Albert Einstein:

The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish.

and…

For me the Jewish religion like all others is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions. And the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity have no different quality for me than all other people. As far as my experience goes, they are no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise I cannot see anything ‘chosen’ about them.

I relate to and consider Einstein’s “cosmic religious feeling” (see article) sensible. It’s a tremendous fact that we’re connected to all that is, ever was, and ever will be (how can it be otherwise?). This fact alone is more than enough impetus to give serious consideration toward the question of living morally. It’s sane and sensible to deny the outrageous idea that any particular group of people are “chosen” by a personal “god” to play a privileged role in human history. Such nonsense, like other childish religious beliefs, can only stir trouble.

Hey, that’s me he’s talking about!

May 6, 2008

Christian, anti-abortionist and capital punishment supporter, Neil:

If people want to make jokes about inconsistencies, a better example would be those who don’t mind [legalizing] the [early term] crushing and dismemberment of innocent human beings (without anesthetic) but protest when a convicted murderer is to be executed and who want to ensure he dies as painlessly as possible.

I thought Neil’s microscope on Reality was a little smudged, so I added the two sets of bold box brackets to temper his emotional plea. I didn’t subtract anything though his wording was a little sloppy joe. For instance, a large percentage of abortions are done 6 weeks or less into gestation so “crushing and dismemberment” might not be the most accurate description for all abortion. I left “innocent” in there because technically speaking, a human fetus lacks the mental requisites to be anything other than harmless…even though being told so is awkwardly redundant. And while “human being” is a poor word choice (it overgeneralizes) when speaking of abortion, an embryo/fetus, though not a person is taxonomically speaking, still a human being. But other than those minor details, he’s talking about people like me!

Oh, and the “Christian” part? Normally I wouldn’t bother mentioning if someone believes in God or not as that isn’t necessarily relevant. But in Neil’s case, he is clearly someone who not only believes in God, but speculates as to what “God” thought. He then uses that speculation to convince others of his views:

Remember, God thought that the death penalty was ok as some point in time.

I thought it was important that readers understand the angle he’s coming from.