Archive for the ‘Religion’ Category

Today’s Lesson

Sunday, November 18th, 2007

It’s Sunday, so it’s only befitting that a spiritual lesson be presented.

The scripture reading today comes in the form of a comic strip titled “Grand Prix” from Sinfest.

No sermon necessary, it stands on its own.

Deprecate the Old Testament?

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007

In my most recent post, I made a statement saying that I feel that the Old Testament should be deprecated.

Damian replied:

Although I wholeheartedly agree I’m interested to know how you would square this up with a mainstream Christian who’d see this as something akin to blasphemy. “All scripture is God-breathed”, etc, etc.

I decided to make this a post in itself, as I was getting lengthy in my comment reply and want a separate comment thread for this notion. Let me toss a little prophecy out here. When you begin to see Christians starting to adopt this view, it will mark the beginnings of a glorious reformation of Christianity itself as it transforms from a religion about Jesus into the religion of Jesus. New and improved, with a lot less woo. (more…)

Wimmin Preachers

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007

I sometimes wander around the net, peeking in at various blogs of preachers, pastors, priests, and other clerics. Once in a blue moon, I’m rewarded with someone’s sermon which shows that rare combination of good writing skills, an inspiring message, and a minimal showing of the various doctrinal errors which, in my mind, pervert Christianity at a fundamental level.

If anybody is has a similar interest, allow me to introduce Emily Hunter McGowin, a seminary student in Texas Ohio. I originally found her via a link on Rodney Dunning’s blogroll, and have, over the course of the last few weeks, been reading some of the sermons she’s writing as part of her coursework as well as her other posts.

Verily, I say unto you, this chick has got a high spiritual coefficient; she has a light that shines so brightly it pierces through the fog that the Southern Baptists call a theology. (more…)

Recent comment activity

Saturday, November 10th, 2007

There’s been some recent comment activity in my Scientists can’t get it right in their own field let alone others post; it includes some of my thoughts which really need their own posts, but I just hadn’t gotten around to ‘em yet.

Arguments against God, pt 3

Monday, October 29th, 2007

Any discussion of common arguments against God needs to address the use (and misuse) of the various forms of Bertrand Russell’s famous mental exercise typically called the Celestial Teapot. Originally devised to illustrate the obvious idea that when positing something, the burden of evidence and/or proof is upon the person who is making the claim, it is a positively wonderful analogy, simply and irrefutably demonstrating its premise.

The current problem with the Russell’s teapot arises when people expand and twist the meaning and intention of it. Rather than being presented as an illustration of who has responsibility to show evidence for a theory, it is frequently presented as an example of an absurd, random hypothesis in an attempt to claim that theists are idiots. Interestingly, the people who most frequently lack comprehension of the analogy also like to call themselves “brights”. It can be argued, however, that they are more likely to qualify for the definition of athiest in the Encyclopedia Dramatica. *cough* (Sorry to my friends who are atheists, I couldn’t resist. Note that the same source also has offensively funny descriptions of theists as well). (more…)

Arguments against God, pt 2

Sunday, October 28th, 2007

Continuing with the some of the typical arguments against God, we come to the “God is not necessary to explain the universe” line of thinking. For suitable definitions of “universe”, I agree wholly. You see, I fully subscribe to the line of thought which is summed up with the statement “Science explains how, Religion explains why”. This, however, I have to take as an article of belief/faith, because I can’t really point to any evidence that religion is even working on the question of why, let alone providing us with an adequate reason. But just because I see religion as being derelict in its duties doesn’t negate the fact that it is indeed its duty.

The physical universe obviously exists. There are physical laws by which it operates, and those laws obviously exist whether or not it was created by a God or Gods, whether it is a simulation ala the Matrix, or whether it just is. When one is trying to figure out how gravity works, it is quite irrelevant whether God decided to create gravity specifically, if it was simply a side effect of something else God decided, or if there wasn’t even a God. At this level, we’re not concerned how gravity got here, we’re concerned with figuring out how it works. Yes, this specifically means that I believe that people should keep God out of science classrooms, just like I believe that religious classrooms should avoid claiming to have figured out how old the earth is.

The problem comes when atheists attempt to use this as a justification for their disbelief in God. The fact that God’s presence isn’t necessary to explain what we can see in the universe doesn’t provide justification either way. “Occam’s Razor”, they chant in sycophantic unison, properly realizing that one should strive for the simplest explanation possible. (more…)

Arguments against God, pt 1

Sunday, October 28th, 2007

I keep trying to avoid writing a lot about religion on here since I’ve decided to set up a separate blog to cover that vast topic. Whenever I get the urge to attempt to teach someone about God, I simply write it in a notepad for future use on that blog. Why? Well, for one reason, I intend to try to hold myself to a higher degree of civility in the discussions regarding religion. This blog tends to be me in my “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore” mood, a place where I can vent my frustrations at the world as I see it now. Unfortunately, I can’t resist a good religious discussion debate argument, and the rest of the world doesn’t have the courtesy to wait for my nuggets of truth and understanding which I will be authoritatively presenting on the new blog. *grin*

Case in point: Over on Very Important Stuff, Dr. Dunning has a recent post addressing some of the most common atheist arguments. This post isn’t really a response to his, which is itself personal opinions in a post inspired by someone else’s post on their personal opinions (God bless the blogosphere!), but rather a convenient excuse for me to make another post for which an arguably suitable response is tl,dr. :) Despite that these supposed arguments against God are nothing new, and I’ve got reams of material already written to attack these arguments, I find myself compelled to jump in with my own opinions. People who know me just chuckled at that last phrase, probably saying “that’s nothing new either”. :) Anyway, without further ado, let’s get down to the four main arguments: (more…)

Magic Mormon Masonic Underwear

Saturday, September 1st, 2007

I hesitate to post this lest people think that I’m yet another one of the chorus of people who obviously hate Mormonism, but I can’t resist because it’s rather humorous. Personally, while I think there’s a good amount of error in Mormon teachings, I have to add that of the Mormons I’ve personally known, they’ve shown themselves to be good, upstanding people. I’m sure there’s plenty who aren’t, but hey, that goes for any given group.

Anyway, on to the funny bit. I confess that I’d never heard of Mormons having magic underwear. And I find the masonic symbols on same fairly interesting as well. Check it:

The only thing that comes to mind is John Winger’s (Bill Murray) famous quote from Stripes:

Chicks dig me, because I rarely wear underwear and when I do it’s usually something unusual.

Hmm, ya think he was talking about magic Mormon underwear? Unusual indeed. :)

China regulates reincarnation

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

As of next month, China is going to begin regulating “the procedures by which one is to reincarnate“.

As the article states, it’s really simply so they can gain more control over the selection of the next Dalai Lama. Of course, that’s if the current Dalai Lama chooses to reincarnate at all. He has already said he would not reincarnate in Tibet (or any Chinese-controlled land), and has expressed thoughts that the work of the Dalai Lamas may complete, thus no further need to return.

The article also mentions the possibility of having two concurrent Dalai Lamas; which would be an interesting repetition of Christian history during periods when more than one Pope claimed authority. Let’s hope that if there’s two Dalai Lamas, they’ll treat each other with a higher degree of civility and morality than the Popes did.