Class Warfare Blog

January 21, 2018

Why Can’t Atheists Just Shut Up About It?

Filed under: Culture,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 8:24 pm
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There is a pervasive feeling among many Americans that there is a war being made upon Christianity, when in actuality Christians are part of a class of people called theists, people who believe in the existence of a god or gods so that includes Christians, who are making class war against those who do not so believe, atheists. This has been going on since there have been religions so it is nothing new. For example:

  • Plato, in his construction of the ideal state, made “impiety” a crime punishable by five years imprisonment for the first offense and death upon a second conviction.
  • Jesus, who is offered as the fount of love and compassion, threatened nonbelievers claiming they will be thrown “into the furnace of fire” where “men will weep and gnash their teeth,” just as “the weeds are gathered and burned with fire….” (Matthew 13: 40– 42).
  • Thomas Aquinas, the great medieval theologian, taught that “the sin of unbelief is greater than any sin that occurs in the perversion of morals,” and he recommended that the heretic “be exterminated from the world by death” after the third offense.
  • Our political waters have been so poisoned against atheists that in 1958 a mere 18% of Americans could abide the idea of an atheist president. (Recently that number has climbed to 58%, possibly due to atheists speaking out?)

So, those thinking that atheists should be silent are saying that we should suffer their iniquities in silence. But, by not being silenced, we are fighting back, and as the poll result above shows, making progress. We should have learned to fight long ago but it is hard to think when you are being burned at a stake.

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Without God How …

Filed under: Religion — Steve Ruis @ 1:35 pm
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There is a class of people called theists, people who believe in the existence of a god or gods, who are making a class war against those who do not so believe, atheists. This is called a class war, if you didn’t know. Part of that class war is fueled by theist’s minds being poisoned against atheists based upon false claims for their religion. Here are a series of questions that theists put to atheists that expose these false beliefs:

Without god, what is left of morality?

Without god, what purpose is there in man’s life?

If we do not believe in god, how can we be certain of anything?

If god does not exist, whom can we turn to in a time of crisis?

If there is no afterlife, who will reward virtue and punish injustice?

Without god, how can we resist the onslaught of atheistic materialism?

If god does not exist, what becomes of the worth and dignity of each person?

Without god, how can man achieve happiness?

These questions are based upon assumptions or claims that are made for religions that actually have to basis to exist whatsoever, well other than being fiction created by men. Allow me to answer these questions based upon my view that religions exist solely because they serves the interests of secular and religious elites by controlling the behavior of the great masses of people to serve those interests.

Without god, what is left of morality?
This has been discussed at length here and elsewhere. It is based upon the illusion that religions create moralities when, in fact, the moralities existed prior to the creation of the religion. Beyond that, people suffer under the illusion that religions reinforce moral codes, by encouraging good behavior, and without that all of us would revert to a savage state of “might makes right” or the “law of tooth and fang.” This is actually propaganda of religions themselves with no basis in fact. The simple truth is that, around the world, the less religious a state is, the more peaceful it is.
If you accept their argument, then you are being conned by the religious into thinking the existence of the religions and the elites who live off of them are essential, when they are not and instead of doing something proactive to encourage moral behavior, you are deferring to an institution which doesn’t really do this.

Without god, what purpose is there in man’s life?
Again, this has been discussed at length here and elsewhere. The simple answer is that most religious people cannot answer the question “What is the purpose of life?” Many Christians say it is “to serve God.” Consider for a minute that, if the only reason for the existence of a religion is to control the behavior of the masses, including you and me, for the benefit of the elites, who does this belief serve? Basically, this says that our purpose is to serve not others, but God? Who benefits from this? Not you or me, unless you believe other things, that are also untrue. (Some religions go so far to insist that doing “good works” for others will not get a reward in the after life, only belief in their claptrap will do that. They are actively discouraging us helping one another!) Please read on.

If we do not believe in god, how can we be certain of anything?
If you realize that certainty is a false goal, it will help you. We actually cannot be absolutely certain of anything. We can be very certain of many things. But “gods,” or at least the words put into god’s mouths, promise absolute certainty. So, have you every had a moment of religious doubt, that some part of it wasn’t right, even a tiny part? I doubt you can be human and not have had such a moment. Therefore, you are not absolutely certain of your religion, otherwise you never would have had any doubts at all. If you admit such doubt to a theologian, they will blame you; it is your fault, because of your weakness, you have had this doubt. Blaming the victim is a common aspect of such scams.
The desire for absolute certainty is understandable. But it does not exist, so anyone who promises it to you is trying to control your behavior for their benefit, not yours.

If god does not exist, to whom can we turn in a time of crisis?
If you believe that a god consoles you in a time of crisis, what does this consolation consist of? If your child is lost and in danger, is your child returned by a god or by a search party of your fellow human beings? If a loved one gets sick, who will be responsible for their getting well: doctors or gods? If we were to be invaded by a foreign army, would you expect a god to repel that army or would you rather trust our army?
Consoling is what human beings do for others they love and respect and sometimes for total strangers. They basically say that they understand, that they also feel grief, and that life will go on. That is where consolation comes from.

If there is no afterlife, who will reward virtue and punish injustice?
This is an abomination. This tells people that if things are done that are evil to not resist them because punishment will be meted out in some spiritual realm that no one has ever seen. Oh, and you will be rewarded for your virtue in a neighboring supernatural realm. Just do not expect the fruits of your labor to reward you now, because those are being skimmed off to serve the elites.
I have always marveled at priestly classes who surround themselves with priceless architecture, paintings, statuary, furniture, etc. We are told this is necessary to impress the secular elites with the “power of the church.” Hmm, is the similar display by the secular elites to impress the religious elites? Why would the religious want to impress the rich and powerful by showing that they are rich also? I would be much more impressed by modesty and simple living, such as can be seen in Buddhist monks. (They are better only in quantity, they are supported by “alms,” that is gifts of food and other things from “believers.” They also participate in a system that allows the elites to subsist off of the labor of masses.)
Imagine if your home were robbed and the thief dropped his wallet during the theft and his driver’s license clearly identifies him, would you accept from the police that there was nothing they could do but the culprit surely will be punished in the afterlife? Who benefits from an infinite delay in punishment for bad deeds? Who benefits from a infinite delay in rewarding your virtue? What would you think if your boss came up to you and said “That idea you came up with will make millions, maybe billions, for the company! This is really exciting! Thank you. Someday, I am sure, you will be rewarded.” Think about how that would feel and then ask yourself, who would benefit from such a belief here?

Without god, how can we resist the onslaught of atheistic materialism?

Gosh, have you ever considered that the definition of “materialism” is basically focusing on what is real and not on the mythical reality one’s religion is trying to create? In sports or business or the military, what does team building have to do spirituality? I suggest that being focussed on reality could help us decide whether we want good, productive, caring lives, or one’s dictated by people trying to control our behavior so that a very few can be rich and powerful. If you don’t think we have a capability within us, without religion, to know how to live good lives, consider the current stance of the current Pope to avoid condemning Catholic Church officials, including bishops, for covering up widespread child sexual abuse by priests? What possible reason might a religious leader have to not condemn child sex abuse and those who facilitate it? No, Church Lady, it is not Satan, but it is power.

If god does not exist, what becomes of the worth and dignity of each person?
My goodness, can this not be based upon what a person establishes through their actions. Do you really need a god to be able to recognize someone’s dignity? Is a dignity based upon the belief that you were “made in God’s image” or that you are one of “God’s people” real dignity? What kind of god creates conscious beings and then chooses to favor one group of those over the others? Would you praise one of your children and condemn the others because it seems like a godly idea?

Without god, how can man achieve happiness?
Why is it Christians are so unhappy? They look around and see wickedness everywhere. I see acts of human kindness on a daily basis. I am rather a happy person as these things are judged and none of it is god-based. International surveys of happiness correlate well against religiousness. The more religious a country is, the less happy its citizens are. Imagine that.

There are myriad such questions and behind everyone of them is a false claim of a religion:
God is the source of morality.
God is the source of  purpose.
Only God can be trusted and is the only source of truth.
God will console you in times of distress.
God will reward virtue and punish injustice.
God is the source of all happiness.

Now, just for a minute, consider if these are just made up ideas, part of a system designed to control your behavior. Who would benefit from you believing such things? Realize if they were just made up, they are not true, so who benefits if you believe them to be true?

Is it you?

I don’t think so.

But there is a saying that “the rich get richer.” This, as it turns out, is the purpose of civilization. Civilization was designed by the elites for their benefit and this has not changed. In the entire history of civilization, over half of all human beings have been a slave of some sort. Does that sound to you like a system made for you by a loving god? No matter what cause religions to be created, they would not survive if they didn’t keep the masses under control. The elites are few and we are many, so they need ways to make sure we stay calm and not blame them for problems. If we have problems it is because we are sinful and weak, but God loves us and we will be rewarded … later. Just be sure to get up and go to work today, because those profits you generate are needed by the secular elites and if they don’t get them, they will be sad.

By the way, you might note the rules for the masses of ordinary people do not apply to the elites. The elites feel free to break laws, customs, traditions, social norms, whatever. They are above all of that. This is why Catholic priests can sexually abuse choirboys and their superiors cover that up. This is why corporate executives break laws over and over and never go to jail. This is why politicians can become rich in office by taking bribes and suffer no consequences. Oh, and any elite foolish enough to admit they have drunk the Kool-Aid and are true believers will not be trusted by the real elites.

 

 

 

 

January 15, 2018

What Kind of Atheists are These?

Filed under: Culture,History,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 10:00 am
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After reading the following excerpts, I will ask you what kind of atheists are displayed based upon their words. Let us begin:

Atheist the First
This is in the form of a conversation between Samuel White Baker and Commoro, a non-believer. They communicated through interpreters:

Baker Have you no belief in a future existence after death?

Commoro Existence after death! How can that be? Can a dead man get out of his grave, unless we dig him out?

Baker Do you think man is like a beast that dies and is ended?

Commoro Certainly. . . .

Baker Then you believe in nothing; neither in a good nor evil spirit! And you believe that when you die it will be the end of body and spirit; that you are like other animals; and that there is no distinction between man and beast; both disappear, and end at death?

Commoro  Of course they do.

Baker (Some corn had been taken out of a sack for the horses and a few grains lying scattered on the ground. Making a small hole with my finger in the ground, I placed a grain within it.) That represents you when you die. (I covered it with earth) That grain will decay, but from it will rise the plant that will produce a reappearance of the original form.

Commoro  Exactly so; that I understand. But the original grain does not rise again; it rots like the dead man, and is ended; the fruit produced is not the same grain that we buried, but the production of that grain: so it is with man—I die, and decay, and am ended; but my children grow up like the fruit of the grain.

Is Commoro a new atheist, a militant atheist, angry atheist, or an agnostic?

Atheist the Second
This book, the Bible, has persecuted, even unto death, the wisest and the best. This book stayed and stopped the onward movement of the human race. This book poisoned the fountains of learning and misdirected the energies of man. This book is the enemy of freedom, the support of slavery. This book sowed the seeds of hatred in families and nations, fed the flames of war, and impoverished the world. This book is the breastwork of kings and tyrants – the enslaver of women and children. This book has corrupted parliaments and courts. This book has made colleges and universities the teachers of error and the haters of science. This book has filled Christendom with hateful, cruel, ignorant and warring sects. This book taught men to kill their fellows for religion’s sake. This book funded the Inquisition, invented the instruments of torture, built the dungeons in which the good and loving languished, forged the chains that rusted in their flesh, erected the scaffolds whereon they died. This book piled fagots about the feet of the just. This book drove reason from the minds of millions and filled the asylums with the insane.

This book has caused fathers and mothers to shed the blood of their babes. This book was the auction block on which the slave-mother stood when she was sold from her child. This book filled the sails of the slave-trader and made merchandise of human flesh. This book lighted the fires that burned “witches” and “wizards.” This book filled the darkness with ghouls and ghosts, and the bodies of men and women with devils. This book polluted the souls of men with the infamous dogma of eternal pain. This book made credulity the greatest of virtues, and investigation the greatest of crimes. This book filled nations with hermits, monks and nuns — with the pious and the useless. This book placed the ignorant and unclean saint above the philosopher and philanthropist. This book taught man to despise the joys of this life, that he might be happy in another – to waste this world for the sake of the next. I attack this book.

Is this author a new atheist, a militant atheist, angry atheist, or an agnostic?

So, what did you answer?

The correct answer is that these were old atheists.

The first example was from the 1860’s! Source: Stephens, Mitchell. Imagine There’s No Heaven: How Atheism Helped Create the Modern World. St. Martin’s Press. Original source: Samuel White Baker, The Albert N’Yanza: Great Basin of the Nile and Explorations of the Nile Sources. Commoro was described as a chief of the Latooka tribe in East Africa, and as a barbarian.

The second example is Robert G. Ingersoll. Source: About the Holy Bible, first published in 1894! Ingersoll is the best example of an American freethinker as can be found.

My point is atheism is not “new.” It has been around since religion raised its ugly head. It is simply an expression of doubt when people are told tales that have no support in reality. The reason atheism is characterized as it is is due to the fact that it has been suppressed for so long that people are actually surprised when it rears its ugly head, and therefore think it is new.

Atheism is not new.

These examples show that you can be formally educated or not, black or white, all of those things don’t matter. All that matters is you cherish being able to think for yourself and do not want to be controlled by make believe principles.

 

 

December 26, 2017

God, the Inspiration of Artists!

At this time of year I see many representations of artist’s glorification of the Christian god (including mundane Christmas carols that I have always loved). This treasure trove of art is used from time to time for justification (aka spin) of the existence of this or that god. “How could a god who does not exist inspire so many artists?” we are asked. “How could such great artistic expression come from less than the most holy?” (♫ Grandma got run over by a reindeer … ♫)

I think folks need to take a closer look at this. I just finished a book on the messages hidden in the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel by none the less than Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni. Michelangelo, who only wanted to sculpt, was given the commission to paint the ceiling of a huge chapel, a facsimile of the temple of the Jews (at least part of it—which was a huge insult as the Jews forbade any such replicas being built). This was an offer he couldn’t refuse and which cost him seven years of his life, his most productive years that could have been applied to sculpture, but. . . . His commission was to paint Christian scenes upon the ceiling and then later, the far wall. This was so inspired by God (and the Pope, his patron) that Michelangelo painted that huge fresco, still one of the largest frescos ever painted, without painting a single Christian figure on the ceiling. All of the figures Michelangelo painted were Jews. There were also several insulting messages for the Pope and other prominent people of the time.

This was not a new practice invented for the occasion, Renaissance painters often painted in such “messages,” including insults for their patrons. Artists were also not allowed to sign their works, so it was often the case that a figure in a painting carried the face of the painter. Michelangelo was so insulted when he unveiled the Pieta he sculpted because the viewers insisted that the sculptor must be Roman because no one from Florence had enough skill, that he broke into the site at night and hastily chiseled his name into the statue! Similarly his face and the faces of his lovers appeared in his frescos. One of the faces on the Sistine Chapel’s surfaces is that of his lover of the time (and yes, M was gay)!

Much of this art and music was commissioned at a time when the few rich people who could afford to commission such works were either Princes of the Church or were secular leaders who needed to overlay some religious sanctity atop their secular rule. So, many of these glorious works of art (sculpture, painting, music) were commissioned on religious themes.

To claim that religion inspired these art works is disingenuous at a minimum. The ability to paint or sculpt “on spec” was limited as artists were paid very little, so if you wanted to guarantee a sale, you had better cater to the prevailing “art market.” Since the rich were constantly sucking up to the religious elites, and vice-versa, it is no surprise that many, many glorious artworks were dedicated to such people. To make an argument for the existence of god from such inspiration shows either a complete lack of understanding, a lack of other credible arguments, or both.

I am really tired of the elites pissing in our glasses and telling us it is lemonade. I would find them more honest if they were to swing a pocket watch in front of our eyes, mumbling “You are getting very sleepy, very sleepy … when you awake, you will believe….”

December 24, 2017

Effing Blundering Humans

What a perfect invention a human is, how noble in his capacity to reason, how unlimited in thinking, how admirable in his shape and movement, how angelic in action, how godlike in understanding! There’s nothing more beautiful. We surpass all other animals. (Hamlet, Shakespeare)

We use the term “civilized” as a complement and “uncivilized” as a criticism. We seem to be fans of civilization and “being civilized.” Unfortunately this is part of the self-propagating control mechanism which is culture. Culture exists so a few can control the many for the benefit of the few.

I was watching a documentary on the Americas before Columbus. I knew much of what they portrayed but to have it all thrust in my face at once made me see the big picture in alarming clarity.

The European conquest of Europe and then the Americas was a blundering, abysmal, staggeringly unenlightened display of brute force. The European’s animals and plants were brought onto this continent and then took over essentially every ecological niche available. Along with the pigs and barley and beer came European weeds and European diseases; smallpox itself was the cause of a majority of the Native Americans being killed. Native species of plants and animals died in front of a wave of horses, pigs, cattle, sheep and staple grains. The plow basically ruined the thin soil in New England that the Native Americans had been nurturing for millennia. Hogs rooted up vast acreage and spread diseases that native species had no ability to fight. Whole forests fell under the axes of the invaders.

Viewed in its entirety, this is a horror show. Genocide alongside ecological imperialism alongside greed alongside culture assassination.

And we call it civilization.

What I see is immense ignorance on display. A complete uncaring for the future of humans and a complete uncaring for anything that does not benefit humans. The definition of a “weed,” for example, is any plant unwanted by humans.

Arrogance, greed, immense ignorance, … aka civilized.

Are we any different now? Are events any different now?

Europeans used up Europe’s resources: cutting its trees, depleting its soils, spoiling its streams, and stripping its oceans of fish. Then they brought “civilization” to the Americas. And now the Americas are quite like Europe when the Americas were discovered.

Have we really learned anything?

I am not talking about academic knowledge, but cultural and political knowledge and actions. Have were learned to the “doing stage” any of the lessons we should have, lessons that will allow us to survive and other species alongside of us? If we have, I sure haven’t noticed that.

 

December 15, 2017

God is No Democrat

Filed under: Politics,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 10:07 am
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There is a bit of word play in the title of this post, but the core meaning is clear. There is no place for democracy in the Bible. Adam Nicolson says in his book God’s Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible, “The condition in Eden had been one of obedience; a steeply raked social structure was ordained by God; and so crawling to the great could be holy in England too.”

This is not just a remnant of the Old Testament replaced by the New Testament by Christians. Paul in his Epistle to the Romans says quite straightforwardly: “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers for there is no power but of God. The powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist, shall receive to themselves damnation.” It is obedience all the way down. (If it were not, would Rome have made Christianity its state religion?)

There is no greater authoritarian than God himself. His will be done. Obey or suffer. There is no place for “one man, one vote.” Men do not get a vote, they get judged.

So, why do I bring this up now? There is talk about declaring this nation a “Christian Nation” and claims that “it always has been.” Evangelical Christians came within an eyelash of getting a completely reprehensible Republican elected Senator from Alabama. They did manage, again by another eyelash, to get a completely reprehensible Republican elected President of the United States. But Christianity and Democracy do not mix. Something has to give, and right now it is democracy that is giving. Our current federal administration wants to do away with the Johnson Amendment, which prohibits religious leaders from politicking from their pulpits. This sounds innocuous enough, but it violates a basic political principle, namely that political money is money that is subject to taxation. If religious organizations are allowed to politic and are exempt from taxation, what do you think is going to happen? (Why the religious cannot see the potential corruption of their churches is completely beyond me.)

Christianity is authoritarian by its very nature. The Grand American Experiment in Democracy eschews authority by requiring the rule of law (the law being the authority, not the law enforcer), by electing rather than appointing its leaders, and eschewing the inheritance of any office, and myriad other ways, of course. But what happens when the lawmakers are captured by Christian authoritarians?

God is surely no democrat, nor should He be a Republican or Democrat. The question now is “Are Republicans democrats?”

 

November 25, 2017

More Proof They Are Just Making This Stuff Up

Filed under: Culture,History,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 9:06 pm
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Have you ever heard of the Holy Grail? If you haven’t I suggest you get out more. My question is: is it real? Does it have a real connection to the Jesus story?

This is a bit of a tease because nobody knows what it “is” because the first known mention of a Grail (“un graal”) was made in a narrative spun by a 12th century writer of French romance, Chrétien de Troyes, that’s right a fiction writer.

I did a Google Books search and according to them there are 363 books on the topic of the Holy Grail currently for sale (just in English).

So, books, movies, serious scholarly articles … and all of it based upon a piece of fiction writing that caught people’s imaginations.

So, when people claim that the whole Jesus phenomenon was an attempt at myth making and that Jesus wasn’t a real person (although likely to have components of real people woven in), please do not argue that such a thing could not be made up.

The Holy Grail myth did not have the power of a church behind it pushing with all it has. They were willing, to suck off a little publicity, but they didn’t start the thing.

Addendum Okay, you can’t make this stuff up. After I wrote this post (on the same day) I saw an announcement for a new TV series with the topic … the search for the Holy Grail.

November 24, 2017

Harari Infuriates Again

I am working my way through “Sapiens” by Yuval Harari and I apologize for posting about it over many moons, but when I read something profound (or profoundly upsetting) I set aside the book for a bit to let the ideas percolate and see what gestates from that. (We do not create our thoughts, although we do give words to them to be able to communicate them.)

I have mentioned before what I perceived as perversity in Mr. Yuval’s book. This is another example.

He was pointing out that no one has natural rights, which is why we claim they come from some god or other. He quotes Voltaire (“There is no God, but do not tell my servant lest he murder me at night.”) and others as to the role religion plays in controlling the masses. He goes on to quote Talleyrand on why physical coercion alone won’t be enough to control people (“You can do many things with bayonets, but it is rather uncomfortable to sit on them.” and “A single priest does the work of a hundred soldiers, far more cheaply and effectively.”) and that religion is as or more useful than physical threat. Yuval concludes that some beliefs/memes, etc. are needed to keep people functioning as soldiers, e.g. honor, country, manhood, God (On our side!), motherhood, etc. and by extension as participating members of a stable society.

But then he goes on to consider the people at the top of the pyramid, the elites. He asks: “Why should they wish to enforce an imagined order if they themselves do not believe in it?” Okay, now we are cooking! He continues in the next sentence: “It is quite common to argue that the elite may do so out of cynical greed.”

Bingo … but …

Yuval then continues to dismiss this statement implicitly by perversely arguing that it could not be “cynical” because the Cynic philosophers had no ambition, and the elites do. This has to be willful obtuseness on the author’s part. Any dictionary would have told him that when ordinary people use the word cynical they are referring to it being “contemptuously distrustful of human nature and motives,” not some harkening to the Greek philosophical school of the Cynics. He then goes on to conclude that the elites have to have their beliefs, too.

Argh!

The key word in “cynical greed” is greed, not cynical. And he sloughs off the greed aspect because, well, what? Getting too close to criticizing the elites can be dangerous? He just leaves it hanging.

Of course, the elites have their beliefs and memes. This is how they communicate without having a Central Committee somewhere issuing orders. The elites believe: that because they are wealthy (or pious) they are special; they are better than the hoi polloi because they show mastery over their environment (through their wealth and power it gives them); because they are better, who better to determine the course of society, to lead. Their wealth is a manifestation of their innate abilities in all things, even if they inherited their wealth. Obviously, the elites have their beliefs and memes.

But beliefs and memes aren’t motives. Greed is a motive. It needs no beliefs or memes to support it. Why do you think it is that religions condemn greed? Because this is what the elites want the masses to believe. First, they do not want competition. If religions preached “Greed is Good!” (The Church of Gordon Gecko?), more people would practice it and the ranks of the elites would swell and there would be less wealth in a share. Second, the elites do not believe greed is bad and they want the masses to think that if the elites appear to be greedy, that they will be punished … by the god(s). As long as the masses take no action upon themselves, the elites are good with that. Accepting divine punishment is perfectly fine if you don’t believe in divines.

The correct follow-up to “It is quite common to argue that the elite may do so out of cynical greed” is “This is indeed the simplest answer … but the elites need a way to communicate with others in their class, so beliefs and memes are shared as a form of signaling.”

 

November 23, 2017

We Are All Together Now

Fundamentalist Christians are sticking to their Adam and Even narrative and now seem to be crowing about the discovery of a male counterpart of mitochondrial Eve. This male ancestor of us all has been dubbed Y-chromosomal Adam. Catchy monikers those scientists come up with.

There is, of course, no evidence these two ancestors ever met and every indication that there were probably tens of thousands of other Homo sapiens alive at the times they existed, but the church people will have their crow, because Jesus.

I can’t help but note that both of these ancestors of ours existed in Africa, were Africans, and likely had very dark skins (an adaption to sunny climates).

I can’t wait for the first Southern Baptist preacher who gets up in front of his congregation on a Sunday morning, and proclaims that science has confirmed the Adam and Eve story as they all knew it would and that Adam and Eve lived in Africa. He finishes with: “Well, we all nigras now.”

Addendum
Just for giggles, it seems that all Europeans or people of European ancestry have DNA that is largely two thirds African and one third Asian. I wonder how my hypothetical pastor might phrase that conclusion for his “flock.”

November 19, 2017

A Kinder, Gentler Religion … Not

Christianity is now described in the most cushiony of terms: it is peaceful, it is love, it embraces you as a mother would a child. Jesus is the Prince of Peace, is … love! But at its core … ?

There are a number of problems with this kinder, gentler portrayal of Christianity:
1.  Christianity gives, in no uncertain terms, man dominion over women. The effects of this have been 2000 years of male oppression of women in the Christian world. If you think we have grown out of this, read the news.
2. Christianity gives “man” dominion over the Earth. This assertion has lead to environmental disaster. This continues at a greater and greater pace.
3. Christianity gives adults dominion over children. Child abuse, even child sexual abuse, is not even mentioned in the Bible, for example.
4. Christianity gives “man” dominion over animals.
4. Christianity gives “man” dominion over slaves, aka other human beings (including those of their own tribe designated as slaves).

Chistianity is not alone in these “givings” as they are shared with many other religions, but not all (Jainism comes to mind). What if, instead of dominion, “man” were to have been given stewardship over the Earth and women and children? Conditions of that stewardship could have been spelled out clearly: that man was to be a protector of those, rather than to lord over them. Would that have made a difference? What if the clergy were given the stewardship of the welfare of all of “their flock” (like any good shepherd), rather than of just our “immortal souls?” What if all human beings were be treated with respect and never enslaved?

These provisions would have had dire consequences for the future of Christiainity, surely making it unsuitable to become the state religion of Rome and hence, consigning it to the rubbish heap of history, but we can dream of a better world and how it could be or have been created.

Why is Christianity and its Jewish roots so adamant about who controls what?

When you adopt the viewpoint that all religions are instruments of social control, especially of the masses for the benefit of the elites, it makes much more sense.

It is elites who wanted the dominion, not the 90+% of the population who are sterilely referred to as farmers or peasants (actually slaves and serfs). Those lesser beings had not the power to exert dominion over much of anything, maybe a few animals in a pen. In any case if the religious had any qualms about subjegating animals, or other human beings, they need not worry as it is warranted in their scripture and there were plenty of propagandists ready to point that out … over and over and over.

A kinder, gentler religion? Not Christianity, because at its core is dominion, not peace, not love. And if you do not believe so, there are threats, dire threats, to make you believe.

Addendum
Twenty-five years ago this month, more than 1,500 prominent scientists, including over half of the living Nobel laureates, issued a manifesto titled “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity” in which they admonished, “A great change in our stewardship of the earth and the life on it is required if vast human misery is to be avoided and our global home on this planet is not to be irretrievably mutilated.” They cited stresses on the planet’s atmosphere, forests, oceans and soils, and called on everybody to act decisively. “No more than one or a few decades remain,” the scientists wrote, “before the chance to avert the threats we now confront will be lost.”

Which U.S. political party opposes action on this front? Is it the more Christian of the two major political parties? Are you surprised? I am not.

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