Thursday, December 31, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #33

And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you.

If ye will not hear, and if ye will not lay it to heart, to give glory unto my name, saith the LORD of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already, because ye do not lay it to heart.

Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.

~ Malachi 2:1-3, KJV

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #32

Early in the morning, as he [Jesus] was on his way back to the city, he was hungry. Seeing a fig tree by the road, he went up to it but found nothing on it except leaves. Then he said to it, "May you never bear fruit again!" Immediately the tree withered.

When the disciples saw this, they were amazed. "How did the fig tree wither so quickly?" they asked.

Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer."

~ Matthew 21:18-22, NIV

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Anything But Theist FAQ

Why are you atheist?
I am not convinced there is any evidence that indicates the existence of gods. I also lack any belief in spirits, souls, an afterlife, prophecy, ghosts, zombies, vampires, faeries/pixies, witchcraft, the loch ness monster, big foot, UFO abductions, or L. Ron Hubbard (they made him up to scare Tom Cruise's kids).

What is your religious background?
I was raised Catholic, and my mother insisted I go through Confirmation. I agreed on condition that I would no longer be required to attend mass with my family, though I have sat through a few since (including a mass held in Rome).

Isn't Atheism a religion?
No, Atheism (with a big A) is not a religion, but it is a statement of faith ("I believe there are no gods"). However, atheism (with a little a) is not a statement of faith, merely a rejection of the God Theory. I am atheist, not Atheist. The difference between an atheist and an agnostic is that an agnostic is unsure whether to reject the God Theory. For more information on why I feel I can make this distinction, read this. For more information on why atheism is not a religion, see here and here.

Do you read/follow/worship at the altar of Dawkins/Harris/Hitchens?
I am aware of their work, but have never read a single book by any of these men (though I have read some excerpts and essays). I have never even read a book I would consider "atheist" in theme. George Carlin is one atheist with whom I identify. I do not hate or despise religion, I find it hilarious.

Have you considered religions outside of Christianity?
A great deal of my short adult life has been spent learning about religion and mythology. I am aware of the multitude of faiths available to humanity, both past and present, and I understand that all religions have something positive to offer. I am also aware that the "truths" which lure followers are dwarfed by the lies which hold them captive to ignorance upon accepting the whole religion. Moreover, the existence of so many different religions means one of three things:
1. They are all equally right [logically impossible]
2. They are all equally wrong [despite each claiming otherwise]
3. One is correct [which one?]

Don't you want to go to heaven and avoid hell?
Ahh, Pascal's Wager. I have a wager for you, called Ginx's Wager. I believe that nothing happens after we die. This is not a pleasant thought, and I prefer the idea of burning in hell forever. Therefore, even if I am wrong and am sent to hell, I will be pleasantly surprised to know I can continue to exist forever, even if it is in excruciating agony. However, no pain can truly have an effect forever, and I imagine it will be like getting into hot tub: bad at first, but eventually you'll get used to it, maybe even find it kind of pleasant (kind of like life in general). However, most theologians accept the notion that hell has nothing to do with fire, but is instead "the absence of God." In this case, hell will be no different than my earthly existence.

Then again, one must consider the posibility that I may get into heaven. Gandhi was not a Christian, though he was aware of Christianity. Despite rejecting Jesus' saving grace, many Christians believe a man of his moral caliber will go to heaven anyway. While I'm no Gandhi, I still have a non-zero chance of getting into heaven (according to some non-fundamentalist forms of Christian theology). And if Gandhi didn't get into heaven, I have no interest in going.

Let me know what hell is like.
That's not a question, but I appreciate your curious nature. For one thing, I'm not sure how I can inform you, unless I get to come back as a ghost to warn people. If I figure out how to do this, I will be happy to oblige your request.

Funny Bible Quote #31

When Elisha reached the house, there was the boy lying dead on his couch. He went in, shut the door on the two of them and prayed to the Lord. Then he got on the bed and lay upon the boy, mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands to hands. As he stretched himself out upon him, the boy's body grew warm. Elisha turned away and walked back and forth in the room and then got on the bed and stretched out upon him once more. The boy sneezed seven times and opened his eyes.

~ 2 Kings 4:32-35, NIV

Monday, December 28, 2009

Please Grow A Pair

I am sick of living in a society where everyone is so afraid of everything. Democrats are afraid to stand up to Republicans. Republicans are afraid of anyone who looks remotely different. And apparently bloggers are afraid of comments.

What is wrong with you people? Stop requiring approval for your fucking comments! Yes, sometimes someone will post spam. Yes, sometimes people will tell you you're going to hell. WHO CARES?!

Grow a pair of fucking balls/ovaries and realize that if an idea you disagree with is displayed under your post for a few hours or even days before you get around to deleting it, the world will not end. There's nothing so dissatisfying as leaving a comment on someone's blog and then seeing the "Your Comment Can Be Viewed Upon Approval." MOTHER FUCKER!

Better yet, leave offensive comments up forever. Ridicule them, or allow someone with a pair of balls/ovaries to ridicule them for you. Nothing someone says to you can hurt you unless you let them, and in most cases it will not make you look bad to leave up insulting comments. It is more of an indictment of the commenter.

I expect this sort of thing from Christians, but atheist sites who moderate their comments really piss me off. It bogs down the possibility for discussion, and discourages the exchange of ideas. Censorship is one step from religion. Let people say what is on their mind in real-time. Honestly... what is the worst that can happen if you don't moderate your comments?

Funny Bible Quote #30

When he [Jesus] arrived at the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were so violent that no one could pass that way.

"What do you want with us, Son of God?" they shouted. "Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?"

Some distance from them a large herd of pigs was feeding. The demons begged Jesus, "If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs."

He said to them, "Go!" So they came out and went into the pigs, and the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and died in the water. Those tending the pigs ran off, went into the town and reported all this, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men. Then the whole town went out to meet Jesus. And when they saw him, they pleaded with him to leave their region.

~ Matthew 8:28-34, NIV

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Straw Man Trinity

If you are an atheist, be prepared to be identified with every atheist who ever lived, even if you have never heard of them.

When I was still in college a few years ago, my Lit professors were all Christian, save one who was Buddhist. From them, I first heard the annoying comments that I would spend more time responding to than I would have ever liked.

The first: "Richard Dawkins never studied theology, so he isn't qualified to discuss it." At this point, I had seen Richard Dawkins a few times on TV shows pushing his books (I only remembered "The God Delusion"). What struck me was that I had never read his work, yet here these professors were telling me that my arguments are unfounded because some British Biologist didn't understand religion. Instead of addressing anything I said, the believers brought up Dawkins, and felt that discrediting him would somehow have an effect on me.

The second: "Christopher Hitchens is a drunk." Again, a man whose books I had never even touched was the target of criticism for my professors. I had never quoted him, mentioned him, or even suggested any ideas that I am aware are his. Of course, this didn't stop any of them from attempting to debunk his ideas for my disinterested benefit.

The third: "Something something Sam Harris." By now I had completely stopped paying attention whenever they got that defensive tone in their voice. Sam Harris is sort of the Holy Spirit in this atheist trinity, because I know the least about him and he's just mysteriously there, lumped into some movement called "The New Atheists."

If my understanding is correct, these guys sell books to believers who buy them to be shocked. I have never read the work of these men, nor do I feel compelled. And yet, believers everywhere feel the need to criticize these men. Not the ideas of these men, mind you, just the men themselves. It would help if believers would state some of their ideas, so I had any fucking clue what they were talking about. I guess believers assume all atheists run out to buy the latest atheist diatribe in print form whenever it is available, since this is what they do. This is what psychologists call "projection."

I wonder, how would Christians feel if I judged them solely based on the Pope, Pat Robertson, and the head of the Mormon Church (whoever that is)? I can imagine the vast majority would be pissed off that I was assuming hundreds of millions of people were all taking their cues from three men who I find easy to criticize.

Why do Christians bother to criticize prominent atheists, rather than their claims? Atheists all appear to independently have the same ideas, since the things I said to my professors must have sparked recognition. They must have thought, "Oh, I heard that before when I was reading something by Dawkins/Hitchens/Harris. If I debase the author, clearly their idea is wrong!"

But this is not the case. Atheists have common arguments because we as atheists observe and must deal with believers who are standardized in their thinking, attitudes, opinions, and theology. This atheist does not meet up every week with other atheists to exchange notes. Religious people do. This atheist does not read from an ideologically-themed book list and plagiarize their ideas. Religious people do. This atheist is not swayed by charisma. Religious people are.

Do I observe evolution as a biological fact? Yes, but that just means I woke up in time for two semesters of biology, two semesters of biochem, a semester of anatomy, a semester of immunology, two semesters of physiology, and a semester of microbiology. In none of those classes were Dawkins, Hitchens, or Harris ever mentioned. Even Darwin was mentioned only during historical overviews because his direct contribution to evolution is merely its initial observation. Darwin is not the foundation of evolution. At best, he was the first shovel in the ground.

So why do religious people constantly misrepresent atheists? Is it retaliation for years of atheists pointing out the horrible things religious leaders have done? Is it a naive belief that atheism actually is a cohesive religion? Is it lazy rhetoric? I may never know, but I do know this: Christians refuse to discuss the Bible, the one thing they all admit to having in common. Christians worship a book of lies, and they are unable to imagine atheists doing any different. Again, this is what psychologists call "projection."

I guess you can't expect much from a group of people who view not only themselves, but all of humanity as a horrible, sinful race requiring supernatural assistance. Psychologists call that... well, you know.

Funny Bible Quote #29

Tell the people: "Consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow, when you will eat meat. The Lord heard you when you wailed, 'If only we had meat to eat! We were better off in Egypt!' Now the Lord will give you meat, and you will eat it. 19 You will not eat it for just one day, or two days, or five, ten or twenty days, 20 but for a whole month—until it comes out of your nostrils and you loathe it—because you have rejected the Lord , who is among you, and have wailed before him, saying, 'Why did we ever leave Egypt?'"

~ Numbers 18-20, NIV

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Video: Pope Tackle

I hear the Bears have already signed her to a three-year contract.

"Not Worth The Wait"

One story over this holiday break actually made me burst out laughing.

Kevin Jonas (who is apparently "the ugly one" in the popular boy-band "The Jonas Brothers") got married recently. One of the main themes of this band is their Christian faith and the fact that all three sport "Promise Rings," which are a symbol of one's intention to wait until marriage to have sex.

So, now that Kevin's cherry is finally popped (at the ripe old age of 22), what does he have to say about sex? "To be honest about it, sex was not worth the wait."

I'm not sure which surprised me more: the fact that Kevin actually said this publicly or the fact that Kevin remained a virgin until marriage. For one thing, every single person I have ever known who wore a promise ring had sex before marriage. Every. Single. One. And I went to a Catholic high school, so I knew quite a few. I even banged two myself, though neither was a virgin by the time I got to them. [What's this odd rash...]

So let's assume, against all odds, that Kevin was actually a virgin. How do two virgins even have sex? There he is, on his wedding night, clumsily fumbling with his new bride's bra... "Here, let me do it," she says. He sees his wife's tits for the first time and...

Am I the only one who questions if perhaps Kevin is still technically a virgin? Is a 22 year old, who has never had sex and has been sexually wound up since the age of 13, even capable of lasting to the point of insertion? That might explain the lack of enthusiasm, because I know sex is fucking awesome not only at first, but even over a decade later (and here's hoping that never changes).

After losing your virginity, one does not generally have such a blase attitude about the whole thing. Most people (guys, anyway) want to scream it from the mountain tops, "I HAD SEX!!!" The candid nature of his comment almost makes me believe his sincerity, because I was apt to assume these guys were banging under-age fans night after night. Apparently not.

And how must his wife feel? I can't imagine she'll be pleased to read this in the paper, nor will Kevin's fellow brothers in abstinence, nor will Disney (the production company who owns them and their giant blue testicles).

Kevin Jonas, for honestly telling the world that sex isn't worth the wait, I salute you. It takes a lot of balls to stand up and say you were wrong, and I hope the divorce leaves you with enough money to continue living comfortably.

Funny Bible Quote #28

That whosoever would not seek the Lord God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, whether man or woman.

~ 2 Chronicles 15:13, KJV

Friday, December 25, 2009

Funny Bible Quote: Christmas Edition!

This is what the Lord says:
Do not learn the ways of the nations
or be terrified by signs in the sky,
though the nations are terrified by them.

For the customs of the peoples are worthless;
they cut a tree out of the forest,
and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel.

They adorn it with silver and gold;
they fasten it with hammer and nails
so it will not totter.

~ Jeremiah 10:1-4, NIV

Wishing everyone a Merry Heathen Christmas!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #27

As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.

~ Proverbs 26:11, KJV

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Silent Night

I have changed my mind on a number of things. I have gone from Catholic to "spiritual seeker" to atheist. I have gone from free market capitalist to communist to market socialist. I have gone from Democrat to Libertarian to unaffiliated independent. I have gone from hopeless romantic to womanizing man-whore to happily married. I haven't had the most interesting life, but I sometimes feel I have more experience in some areas than the average person - at least for a 26 year old (so young... so dumb).

I would not have had such a life without exposure to so many different ideas and people. At any time, I could have shut out what is different. I could have ignored people who disagreed with me. I could have just nodded and smiled at every opportunity to argue. But the truth is I couldn't.

I have an inability to remain silent in the face of opposition. I don't particularly relish conflict, but if I hear someone say something I think is stupid and it comes down to politely backing off or telling them they are flat out wrong, I have yet to find the situation where I respectfully bow out of the conversation.

I find discussion of ideas with people who think very differently to be not only refreshing and novel, but beneficial to my intellectual development. I'm not done learning, even though school ended for me years ago. Besides being exposed to new ideas that I may choose to adopt, arguing with someone whose ideas I have found to be inaccurate tends to strengthen my understanding.

It's a strange situation, that the same activity can yield such paradoxical results. On one hand, arguing with someone has the common tendency to entrench the participants, playing off the stubborn nature of both debaters. Yet, polarization is not the only outcome. In fact, it is only through engaging those who are different that we can ever hope to change - or improve.

Will I one day grow old and look back on the heated discussions I had with others and feel proud, or will I be ashamed? Only time will tell, but right now I am glad I have never kept my piece just to keep peace. I am not out to change other peoples' minds, only to develop my own. The more I express my opinions and open them up to the world of criticism, the stronger they will become. I want ideas forged in fire, not soft and comfortable belief. It is comfort enough to know that I have formulated the best ideology that I could have possibly developed for myself.

Am I always right? Of course not, but one day I hope to be. True, I can never know everything, but I can aspire to know a few subjects very thoroughly. One thing I do know: you can't learn anything by being silent. One must engage in meaningful discussion, no matter how foolish it may make you appear. Listening is important, but if all you do is listen... are you learning or being preached to?

Funny Bible Quote #26

If only you would be altogether silent! For you, that would be wisdom.

~ Job 13:5, NIV

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #25

Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and ill-tempered wife.

~ Proverbs 21:19, NIV

Monday, December 21, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #24

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

~ Revelation 4:11, KJV

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snowed In

We got a lot of snow, so I took pictures and realized I had lots of old photos I hadn’t transferred to my computer yet. I figured I’d share them, since some aren’t too bad.

We got 23 inches (over 58 cm) of snow. Not the most I’ve ever seen, having lived in Michigan, but still pretty impressive. Here’s the pics:

There were also pictures on my camera from me and my wife’s trip to Virginia, when we stopped in DC.

First we have some pics of us trying to get my wife, our dog, myself, and the Washington Monument in the background.

We did this all over Europe with great success, though we didn’t have the dog. A guy in a nice pinstripe suit came over and offered to help us take a photo. This is the result:

I also took a shot with my wife and our dog, Barkley, in front of the reflecting pool:

We also saw the Lincoln Memorial:

This is a shot of the Washington Monument from the Lincoln Memorial steps:

And the White House, complete with Christmas tree:

Too bad the new season of Dexter and Californication are over… nothing to do or look forward to on this snowy Sunday, besides waiting for the weather to let up so we can pack and head halfway across the country to my parents’ house.

Funny Bible Quote #23

God thundereth marvellously with his voice; great things doeth he, which we cannot comprehend.

For he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth; likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of his strength.

~ Job 37:5-6, KJV

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christianity: The Mentor of Atheism

Before monotheism, there was polytheism. Polytheists did not think of themselves as polytheists. They didn’t write books about polytheism. They merely wrote about many gods as if it was essentially “assumed knowledge.”

Sure, people preferred some gods over others. If you lived in Athens, Athena might be important to you. If you were a farmer, you might make sacrifices to Cybele . If you were a noble or ruler of some kind, you would look to the divine king Zeus. It was usually not a matter of asking oneself, “Which god or goddess is more powerful?” but rather, “Which god or goddess is most appropriate for me?” This is a concept known as henotheism, which is the preferential worship of one god while still acknowledging the presence – and power – of other gods.

Enter monotheism. We don’t know when the original Hebrew texts took on their current tone, but clearly at some point long ago the Jews decided to not only worship their god above all others, but also to demote all other gods to inferior status.

This practice got them into trouble from time to time. Israel was a hotbed of political problems when held by Jews, from the early conflicts resulting – twice – in the destruction of their most sacred temple, to their current inability to share and play nicely with goyum.

However, monotheism was contained for a long time. It was practiced by a fringe group for centuries before it went viral. With the adoption of Jewish theology in a framework that was compatible with any ethnic background, the idea of monotheism spread from port to port throughout the Mediterranean in the form of Christianity.

Christianity seems archaic and superstitious today, but it was second only to the Epicureans when it came to skepticism during the first millennia CE in Europe. In fact, Christianity was so successful as a form of skepticism, they left almost no trace of nearly any competing religion. Europe was dimmed by a Dark Age of ignorance and territorial disputes until their violence spilled over into the Middle East.

Initially possessed by an intent to conquer, Europe came away from the numerous crusades with little political gain and mountains of knowledge that their ancestors had burned as heretical. An interest in Classical philosophy, especially Plato and Aristotle, set the tone for scientific advancement that culminated in the Renaissance.

We are now in the final phases of Christianity. Thanks to Christian skepticism, there are very few of the deceptive magicians who prey on the gullible. Now, the logical conclusion is that the other gods lost all their influence once we stopped believing, so disbelief in The God™ will bring about the end for Christianity.

Christianity, and all monotheistic faiths, are merely incomplete forms of skeptical atheism. They recognize the sham implicit in praying to a god’s statue and expecting a more desirable outcome, unless it’s their God (statue or abstract).

One thing atheism has learned should be unlearned. Christianity grew to singular prominence not by virtue of their theological arguments, but by force. For centuries, Christianity was inseparable from European governance, and therefore was “guilty” of being the religion followed by many people who did wicked things in the name of their religion.

One thing atheists must not do is follow in these footsteps… again. It is wrong to force religion upon a person, but it is equally wrong to wrest it away. Not only is it no one’s place to police the minds of human beings, no good can come from forcibly censoring others. The religious must always be allowed to voice their opinions, and must never feel they need to hide their faith.

When governments attempt to tell people what to believe, people resist – even those who would otherwise agree. I for one would strongly oppose any measure to destroy churches or deport people of a particular faith (Scientologists don’t count as people… I mean, they’re “aliens,” or whatever, right?). Besides, if religion was “abolished,” what would we blog about?

Funny Bible Quote #22

The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren;

And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram;

And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon;

And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse;

And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias;

And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa;

And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias;

And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias;

And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias;

And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:

And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel;

And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor;

And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud;

And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob;

And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

~ Matthew 1:1-16, KJV

[Why is it funny? In 38 other examples, the lineage is father to son, but Joseph has no relation to Jesus. Jesus is only a “son of David” if he is related to Joseph.]

Friday, December 18, 2009

Math and the Bible

I’d like to mathematically disprove Creationism, using the Bible.

By the most liberal estimates, the Bible describes 10,000 years of history. Most put it under 6 thousand, but we’ll give the benefit of the doubt. In 2 Peter 3:8, we find: “But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” So I did the math:

10,000 God Years x 365.24 Days/Year = 3,652,400 God Days
3,652,400 God Days x 1000 Human Years/God Days = 3,652,400,000 (3.65 billion) Human Years

The Earth is over 4 billion years old, not to mention the universe being much, much older. Even with metaphors, the Bible is a joke.

Funny Bible Quote #21

And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.

And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king's son in law: and the days were not expired.

Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king's son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.

~ 1 Samuel 18:25-27, KJV

Thursday, December 17, 2009


I think there’s too much doubt these days, but I can’t be sure.

No, I am sure. I’m sick of people who act like maybe the sun won’t come up tomorrow.

“Nothing can be sure,” except I think they wrote that saying when we treated disease with leeches and mercury. Today, we go about our incredibly complex lives with a subtle confidence in millions of tiny things.

We trust our alarm to wake us up. We trust that hot water will come out of the shower faucet. We trust that the cleaning products we use will get us clean. We trust that our mode of transportation will get us from where we live to where we work without killing us. We trust that our employer will pay us. We trust that our family will love us. We trust that when we sit our fat asses on the couch and touch a hand-held piece of plastic, that a TV will magically come on, and that somewhere hundreds, maybe even thousands of miles away - in a place you have never been - that people produced your favorite show, which will appear on your television set at a pre-ordained time.

I think sometimes people get hung up on the fine details. I am more of a big-picture person. I take in many details, but since I respect no one, I don’t agree with most of what I read. Anything I agree with is something I have been presented many times and which I find accurate when applied as an explanation for particular phenomena.

There are so many things in this life that we trust every day, we just take them for granted. We get hung up on details, perhaps because it’s so fun to take something out of context.

Funny Bible Quote #20

And Ehud came unto him; and he was sitting in a summer parlour, which he had for himself alone. And Ehud said, I have a message from God unto thee. And he arose out of his seat.

And Ehud put forth his left hand, and took the dagger from his right thigh, and thrust it into his belly:

And the haft also went in after the blade; and the fat closed upon the blade, so that he could not draw the dagger out of his belly; and the dirt [excrement] came out.

~ Judges 3:20-22, KJV

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Divine Gender

What I’m about to say may surprise some of you. Maybe not the women, but it will shock the guys. I have come to find out that God is, in fact, a female. Think about it. God created life by birthing the universe. God raised man and taught him the rules to live by. Man was made in God’s likeness, but before woman. Therefore, when woman was created, God clearly already had practice. Eve is more closely related to God, as she was a second attempt, and more apt to be done right.

Also, God always needs reassurance. The Biblical God is an insecure God, and She must be praised often in order for Her to be reminded of just how wonderful of a God She is. She does an often thankless job: cooking up the universe, raising Her billions of children, all while fighting with Satan (clearly a scorned ex-husband). All She asks in return is a little gratitude… and money.

God always needs money. This clearly indicates that She doesn’t hold a job while raising the universe. I’m not judging; I’m glad She’s keeping an eye on things rather than wearing a gaudy blazer and showing homes to young couples who cannot afford them. However, let’s face it, God can never get enough alms, donations or tithes.

God’s female gender can help account for the staggering number of inconsistencies in the Bible regarding God’s personality. God is very jealous of other Gods. “Don’t you dare look at that golden calf over there! Oh I know you didn’t just say something about Me under your breath, mister. That’s blasphemy!” Which reminds me, God also clearly has a menstrual cycle. God will be extremely kind one minute… then the hormones kick in. The next thing you know, an earthquake knocks your house down. The whole Noah’s ark flood thing? Talk about a heavy flow. That was one nasty case of cosmic PMS. She was bitter during the Old Testament because of the whole break-up with Satan, but God got the house in the divorce, once again proving She’s female, and the birth of Her child seemed to calm her down.

Other personality traits of God can be more easily explained once one realizes God is female. God claims to know everything and is always “right.” If you upset God, She makes you sleep in the dog house… for eternity. Of course, if you admit you’re wrong and say how sorry you are, She will forgive you, ’cause that’s just the kind of girl She is. No matter how much you abuse Her, She keeps taking us back. God is a co-dependent housewife. She sticks by Her man: Mankind.

Funny Bible Quote #19

And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn.

And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him.

Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.

So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.

And the Lord said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him.

~ Exodus 4:23-27, KJV

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Obituary: Oral Roberts

Televangelist Oral Roberts died today at age 91, illustrating once again that the good die young. His legacy will likely be Oral Roberts University, which he founded in Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1963 (colleges are a huge racket).

I’ll remember him for his claim that Jesus came to him in a vision and commissioned him to find a cure for cancer. Below: CitiPlex office complex, originally built as the Oral Roberts’s City of Faith Medical and Research Center.

It turns out non-evolution based biology doesn’t really… exist.

Mythical Interviews: God’s Mom

GINX: Today, I’m interviewing God’s Mom. What can I call you besides “God’s Mom?”

GOD’S MOM: I’ve been called so many things. To be honest, it’s just nice to be recognized. You can call me anything you’d like.

GINX: You don’t have a favorite name?

GOD’S MOM: Well, I always liked Sophia. You can call me that.

GINX: Okay, Sophia. How would you describe yourself?

SOPHIA: I am Wisdom, the intangible abstraction of collective living knowledge.

GINX: So, you know everything humans know?

SOPHIA: In a way, I am everything humans know. Of course, not everything human’s know is even accurate, but I don’t think that’s what you were really asking. I know you didn’t seek me out to talk about my qualities.

GINX: Yeah, I really wanted to interview you in order to ask about God.

SOPHIA: What piece of information do you expect to extract from me to use against my child?

GINX: Look, I know you want to protect your son–

SOPHIA: Yahweh is not to blame. I made a mistake.

GINX: Gods make mistakes?

SOPHIA: I’ve made more mistakes than most people, of course I’ve had more time to make them. But Yahweh is innocent, nothing but a part of me, a Little Knowledge. I knew better, that a Little Knowledge is a dangerous thing. What’s worse, I kept him isolated for so long. But you have to understand, I was forbidden to have children of my own. I was forced to remain a virgin against my will. I had to keep my child hidden, even from my parents.

GINX: So, how did Yahweh come about?

SOPHIA: Emanation.

GINX: What is that?

SOPHIA: Autonomous creation. I created Yahweh all by myself.

GINX: Gods can do that?

SOPHIA: Sure, sometimes. Of course, there was that night when I got drunk with Hermes and woke up kind of sore.

GINX: What?!

SOPHIA: Regardless, I hid Yahweh on Earth, to avoid mocking from the other gods, for the sake of myself and my child.

GINX: Mocking?

SOPHIA: Yahweh is… special.

GINX: Special? Like Sarah Palin’s baby?

SOPHIA: No, special like Lady Gaga.

GINX: Wait, He’s blonde and can’t sing? Oh I see, He’s an attention whore.

SOPHIA: No, Yahweh is both male and female.

GINX: Hmm… I heard God had no gender.

SOPHIA: All the gods have gender, and it’s quite important. The men look down on the women, and the women look down on the men. There are very few gods like Yahweh. All the gods call Him ambisextrous behind His back. I use the masculine pronoun for Him because, well, a mother wants her child to be happy, and He wants to be a male.

GINX: Does Yahweh know you exist?

SOPHIA: Oh yes. He believes He created me. I believe it’s mentioned in Proverbs, Chapter 8.

GINX: So, if He thinks He created you, why did He get defensive when I mentioned His mother?

SOPHIA: He assumes you’ve been talking to the other gods. They have tried to tell Him the truth, but He ignores them.

GINX: Well, I haven’t talked to other gods.

SOPHIA: I know, but why don’t you?

GINX: No interest.

SOPHIA: And yet here you are.

GINX: Maybe another day. So Yahweh knows about other gods?

SOPHIA: Certainly. You’ve read the Bible, you know that dozens of other gods are mentioned. He just does not recognize their true nature, let alone their superiority.

GINX: What do you mean?

SOPHIA: I have obtained an oath from the other gods to never harm Him, but they have certainly introduced themselves… sometimes rudely. Yahweh is quite aware of their existence, He just believes He is the most powerful.

GINX: Is He?

SOPHIA: In a way… in the sense that no one can harm Him.

GINX: One other thing I want to ask before I let you get back to… whatever gods do.

SOPHIA: Gardening, mostly. After all, only gods can create a tree.

GINX: Right… My final question: did Yahweh create the universe, the Earth, or life?

SOPHIA: No, no, and no.

Ginx. Care to elaborate?

SOPHIA: What is there to elaborate? In the beginning, there was fire. Yahweh did not come around until water had settled on the planet Earth. He believes that is the state of the universe without Him. He only believes the universe is a couple thousand years old, because that’s how old He is. He has no concept of existence outside of himself. By divine standards, He is a mere child barely out of infancy. He hasn’t even left the Earth.

GINX: Well, Sophia, thanks for taking the time to talk to me.

SOPHIA: It was my pleasure. I have to run, anyway. I need to be mistaken for the Virgin Mary on a burnt piece of toast in Tennessee before dinner.

Funny Bible Quote #18

A quarrelsome wife is like
a constant dripping on a rainy day;

restraining her is like restraining the wind
or grasping oil with the hand.

~ Proverbs 27:15-16, NIV

Monday, December 14, 2009

Funny Bible Quote[s] #17

You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere men?

~ 1 Corinthians 3:3, NIV

For thou shalt worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:

Lest thou make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they go a whoring after their gods, and do sacrifice unto their gods, and one call thee, and thou eat of his sacrifice;

And thou take of their daughters unto thy sons, and their daughters go a whoring after their gods, and make thy sons go a whoring after their gods.

~ Exodus 34:14-16, KJV

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Personal Chuckle

I usually have a personal rule about commenting on still open polls/quizzes, but I just couldn’t wait.

The question: In which language is the New Testament originally written?

The answers: Herbew, Aramaic, Latin, Greek

Hebrew is the language of the books Christians collectively call “The Old Testament” (which is more or less the Jewish Tanakh). I’m going out on a limb here, but I’m guessing most of the people who guessed this are Jewish. My wife’s blog sends a lot of traffic to my site, so I think it’s a fair assumption.

One person said Aramaic. This is the pseudo-intellectual Christian answer. The person who answered this clearly knew Jesus spoke Aramaic, so they just figured, “Well, if his buddies wrote the New Testament, clearly they wrote it in Aramaic. Plus, wasn’t ‘The Passion of the Christ’ in Aramaic?”

Catholics probably answered Latin. Not all Catholics, since I know I was taught in CCD that the New Testament was written in Greek, and that the Latin Vulgate is merely an accepted translation. Maybe someone who knew Roman ideology had such an influence on Christianity also took a stab that it was Latin.

Greek was the scholarly language of the early Roman Empire. Specifically, Koine (or common) Greek was the lingua franca (primary language) during the centuries leading up to and proceeding Jesus.

Greek is the language in which the New Testament was written. The earliest works attributed as books of the New Testament were Paul’s epistles/letters. The earliest Gospel is Mark’s, dating no earlier than 65 CE. Nothing in the New Testament was written anyone who ever met Jesus. The New Testament is a work of Greek literature, relying heavily on Platonic philosophy.

Just something to chuckle about.

Funny Bible Quote #16

And Er, Judah's firstborn, was wicked in the sight of the Lord; and the Lord slew him.

And Judah said unto Onan, Go in unto thy brother's wife, and marry her, and raise up seed to thy brother.

And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother's wife, that he spilled it [semen] on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother.

And the thing which he did displeased the Lord: wherefore He slew him also.

~ Genesis 38:7-10, KJV with clarification added

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #15

Then the Lord awoke as from sleep, as a man wakes from the stupor of wine.

~ Psalm 78:65, NIV

Friday, December 11, 2009

Personal God

I have always found the term “personal god” a little suspect, and I think I figured out why. Every monotheist defines their own personal image of God, which is what “personal god” really means. In other words: if you went to a church on Sunday, each of those people is praying to a completely different god, each of which has completely different traits.

Some worship the angry God, all vengeance and smiting. They think AIDS is God’s divine viral justice (I guess hemophiliacs and children are collateral damage on the celestial battlefield). They envision God judging us upon death and sending the bad to hell, while the “good” (see also: people who agree with them) live forever with Him in heaven, behind the pearly gates (a sort of eternal gated community, I assume to keep out those in “poor person” heaven).

Some worship the “Love” God. “God is love!” Of course, they don’t explain how atheists are capable of loving, but that doesn’t stop their bubbly optimism. They believe God performs miracles for dying atheists so they can repent at the last second and be saved. They believe God doesn’t send anyone to hell, that our own actions send us there (thereby absolving their touchy-feely God from the unsavory task).

Some worship the abstract God, a complex being who exists outside of time and space, a deity who can create a rock not even He can move – or can He?! God is a complex series of paradoxical propositions: the master who serves, the one who sets you free if you submit completely, the benevolent creator of evil.

Lots of people worship various aspects of all of these gods, and most will jump between the definitions when convenient. None are any more “correct,” as each is quite accurately portrayed in the Bible by different writers.

The interesting thing is that there are no God archetypes stated; everyone wordlessly creates the image for themself, without being instructed to do so. It seems to just come naturally. The Bible is full of nearly every imaginable depiction of God, so there is no difficulty in formulating any particular image of God from its pages. Liberal, conservative, moderate, hippy, bad-ass, lover, fighter, whatever you can think of: God has been depicted in that way somewhere in the Bible.

So once people have this image of God, how do they go about ignoring all the other depictions? If you see God as a condemner of evil, how do you justify Jesus’ relationship with prostitutes? Again, it’s quite easy to perform the necessary mental gymnastics required: you just use rationalization to justify what you already do. “Well, Jesus wasn’t condoning prostitution, He was saving their souls. There, now I can still maintain a clear conscious when I call women in short skirts ‘no-good whores.’”

However, what amuses me the most is that many believers don’t know God’s name. It’s a common question I ask initially in religious conversations (of non-Jews), and I find that most Christians have no clue. They guess “Jesus” most of the time, and blank when I say “No, I mean the Father, not the Son.” Which reminds me, does the Holy Spirit have a name? If not, I think it should be named Nothing. “I feel by the power of Nothing!” That sounds so much more accurate.

[For the record, Jesus’ name is actually more closely pronounced “Yeshua,” and God’s name is YHWH, pronounced roughly “Yaw-way,” commonly spelled Yahweh. I prefer Yawa, as it maintains the tetragrammaton property of four letters.]

So, if you’re reading this and you believe in God, why not give Him a name? You created Him, you have every right to name Him: He’s your “personal god.”

Funny Bible Quote #14

Designate a place outside the camp where you can go to relieve yourself. As part of your equipment have something to dig with, and when you relieve yourself, dig a hole and cover up your excrement. For the LORD your God moves about in your camp to protect you and to deliver your enemies to you. Your camp must be holy, so that he will not see among you anything indecent and turn away from you.

~ Deuteronomy 23:12-14, NIV

Thursday, December 10, 2009

It’s Against My Religion

I found religion. As it turns out, it was in the cushions of my couch, where I assume it leaked up my exposed legs and into my body, infecting me. I had this epiphany while watching a young adult on TV who is the child of deaf parents discuss her difficulty as a hearing person when dealing with people who are deaf.

My sister went to college with the intention of entering deaf education. She hears just fine, and she was especially interested in speech therapy which works with deaf people in an attempt to help them learn to speak. It turns out there is a lot of resistance to this. The deaf think of themselves as an insular culture, one which is minimalized by “hearing” culture. The intentions of my innocent sister were an affront to their way of being.

The child of deaf parents on TV spoke while signing, and discussed the stigma she felt when communicating with the deaf. Deaf people often ask very early in a conversation whether you are deaf or just know ASL (American Sign Language). They ask, of course, because it matters to them. Deaf people treat the hearing differently.

At this point, my mind immediately jumped to the sociological implications of this. Everything is like a religion. Religion is nothing but a cultural vehicle. It is a word with Latin origins, and St. Augustine was one of the first to expound fully upon it. To him it meant “reconnection.”

I feel reconnected, but not to anything divine. Atheism has always been a “religion” to theists. They jeer the phrase “Atheism is a religion,” like hurling a dozen rotten eggs, the smell of which we can’t get out for days. Why try to fight it, I wondered… I have a religion, it’s just not based on faith and it’s not even based on atheism.

Every atheist makes the choice for themself. Is atheism a religion to you? To me, it never has been, and I can’t imagine it being one, but that doesn’t mean I lack religion. I have rituals, I have habits, I have likes and dislikes, I have ethics, I have exaggerated stories of my greatness. I have everything you need for a religion. I am a veritable Cult Depot.

So what does the Cult of Ginx entail? I’ll start with my weird habits, since religion is just contagious obsessive compulsions.

I don’t like whipped cream. I don’t eat anything with whipped cream like filling, such as Twinkies or Ding Dongs. I’m not against junk food, by any stretch, I just prefer peanut butter and chocolate based products like Reese’s Cups or those chocolate dipped peanut butter wafer things by Little Debbie.

I don’t pour milk in my cereal; I eat it dry. I don’t eat cheeseburgers, but I enjoy burgers and I love cheese. It has nothing to do with “don’t boil a calf in its mother’s milk,” although I think a chicken omelet is something only a serial killer would order.

I don’t drink any hot beverages, be it hot cocoa, tea, or coffee. I also don’t drink alcohol. I didn’t get caught drinking and driving without pants, nor am I on any wagon, nor have I ever had a drinking problem (I drank, got drunk, passed out in my own bed, no problem). I’m just surly and talkative enough, and even if I was a drinker, people without jobs shouldn’t incur drinking bills.

I also love stuff I think of as RTMPs (room temperature meat products). Kippered herring, pickled beef sticks, beef jerky, turkey jerky, smoked beef nuggets, those beef sticks packaged with room temperature cheese. I love eating that stuff; it’s like going camping without leaving the house.

I love seafood of all kinds, from lobster, crab, shrimp, prawns and crawfish to salmon, flounder, tilapia, and tuna. I would not be surprised if I had mercury poisoning, and frankly, it would explain a lot.

How long can a guy talk about food and have people still pay attention to him? I assume some of the people reading this have read the Bible, so I’m banking on you guys having a good attention span for this stuff.

I don’t like vegetables. I will eat most salads - though buy lettuce? Rarely. I hate the texture of cooked veggies. I don’t mind them in soup, but I eat around them in just about anything else. I am picky about what I’ll put on my fork, but I don’t send things back. That’s part of my moral code.

I have never worked as a waiter, but I know a lot of people who have. I always tip at least 15%, and that’s if they spilled boiling hot soup on me. I tip usually about 20%. To be honest, I’m unemployed and haven’t gone out to eat in a long time. It’s usually a special occasion these days.

And you don’t send back food. I don’t care if your steak is still fucking mooing and you ordered it well done. You eat your bloody fucking hunk of meat.

I have a deep-seated fear of my belly button. The Bible lacks segues and it’s the top selling book of all time. You can’t argue with success.

When I was little, my parents told me to look out for bats during the daytime because they were probably rabid, and if I was bit, I would have to bring the bat so they could chop its head off to check. If I got bit by a rabid bat, I was told, I would have to get 99 shots in the belly button. Not long after hearing this, I saw the movie Gremlins.

One nightmare of Gremlins in doctor’s masks pinning me down to a gurney while they stuck six-inch hypodermic needles into my belly button later… and I will break your fingers if you try to touch me there. Also, deathly afraid of needles. I request restraints when I have to get shots, but they think I’m kidding.

So maybe I’ll add to my religion: no scaring your kids with bullshit stories of inordinate pain resulting from improbable events. And while we’re at it, don’t scare your kids into hating strangers. I remember seeing some Winnie-the-Pooh special about not trusting strangers. When did xenophobia become a value of Winnie?

You can scare us as kids so that we grow to never trust anyone, to the point that we all walk blankly down the street, eyes on the ground in front of us, fingering a bottle of mace in our coat pocket… but why? Child abducters can still take your kids because they’re adults and kids are small and stupid. You don’t have to scar everyone for life just to appear to help a few.

Also, I hate people who say you shouldn’t talk about religion or politics. Am I the only one who thinks people who say this are just saying it to try to prevent us from seeing how stupid they are? They say it is to be polite, but people talk about sports all the time and there’s certainly no civility there. In fact, I think I’m going to start using my new-found religion to get out of talking about sports.

I stopped paying attention to all sports about a year ago, but it had started long before. Football was the last to go, and my favorite player Brett Favre’s trade to the Jets pretty much cemented my disinterest in the sport. Like Charles Barkley retiring from basketball, I just sort of lost all interest. I found myself much better informed about the rest of the world and having much more time to enjoy other things.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying my new religion will oppose sports. Play “Hockey” for all I care, but next time sports comes up, I’m going to gracefully bow out of the conversation by saying, “It’s against my religion.”

Every religion needs taboos, and I think talking about sports is a great one. Sports conversations are mindless ramblings of drunken speculation and projected anger. “Yeah, they’ve never been the same since the trade. They need to pick up some decent talent in the support positions during the off-season…”

Let’s put it this way, when I was single and you guys were having your sports circle jerks and playing fantasy football, I was playing other fantasies with the ignored girlfriends. Girls like a guy who can talk about gay stuff like “books” and “feelings.” In my religion, it’s only wrong to cheat on your significant other, not to facilitate someone else’s cheating (of course it’s hardly cheating if she sends him the pictures that night).

Note: I do not recommend attempting to have a serious relationship with someone who has already demonstrated to you that they will, in fact, cheat on their significant other. Knowing this fact would have saved me from about 5 years across two different relationships.

My religion is against censorship of any kind, so I can’t recommend telling people to stop talking about sports. Instead, I recommend giving them a designated area, like smokers. A small, windowless room with poor ventilation, or some steps outside, should be adequate as long as you provide cheap domestic beer. Also, since meeting my wife, I can’t fuck your girlfriends and wives, but I can get them to divulge embarrassing things about you while you mindlessly drone about meaningless children’s games.

Sorry for the aimlessly wandering post, but that’s just how religious experiences are, I suppose. I don’t know what I’ll call my religion, maybe Orthodox Ginx. One thing I’ll certainly be doing: looking for new things that are “against my religion.”

Funny Bible Quote #13

The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.

~ Psalm 14:1, KJV

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #12

If two men are fighting and the wife of one of them comes to rescue her husband from his assailant, and she reaches out and seizes him by his private parts, you shall cut off her hand. Show her no pity.

~ Deuteronomy 25:11-12, NIV

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #11

Yet she became more and more promiscuous as she recalled the days of her youth, when she was a prostitute in Egypt. There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses.

~ Ezekiel 23:19-20, NIV

Monday, December 7, 2009

On The State of Atheism

As stated before, I demark a difference between atheism and Atheism. I see atheism as being a lack of belief in Gods, while Atheism is a belief that there are no Gods. For most information on why I feel I may make this distinction, see here.

There is a disturbing trend involving Atheism. It seems like every day Atheists are becoming more and more like a religion. Not a single, cohesive religion, but an annoying one none the less. I saw a billboard on my way to Virginia, just outside of Washington D.C., which said:

Can you be good without God? Millions are.

Now, I agree with the message. I also believe the companies and transit authorities who refuse to allow Atheist groups to buy ad space are wrong for doing so. However, I really wish Atheists wouldn’t advertise.

For one thing, it looks bad to religious people. I know, it shouldn’t matter, but it’s annoying when you see ads like this:

Again, I agree with the argument, and Atheists should be allowed to make themselves look bad, but it’s annoying because religious people jump from that ad to claims that Atheists are after their children. Nothing pisses off a religious person more than the thought of their kids not hating the same things they hate.

Atheists: you are dealing with an opponent who isn’t very bright. They take things way out of context, on a fairly regular basis. Putting up a sign suggesting people can be good without God serves no purpose beyond goading religious people. Showing kids in your ads even smacks of the emotional tactics of the religious. Why waste the money?

On top of all this, Atheists are organizing into groups that meet. Way to take away the best part of being non-religious: no stupid meetings. Sure, it all starts with “I just want my child to feel a sense of community…” and it ends with “You know what we should do? Let’s use our collective willpower to annoy people.”

Atheists have nothing in common. Instead, they merely share an aversion for something. I’m not going to explicitly say it [Godwin's Law], but what groups can you think of that met to discuss their dislike for other groups? How does that usually turn out?

It’s good to be part of a community, but it’s best to be part of the community. We are residents of towns and cities, citizens of states and nations, and members of the human race and planet Earth. If you crave something smaller, find a positive commonality, not a negative one. Get your kids into something constructive like sports, art, music, animal torture (er, hunting), anything but Atheism. If you take your kids to an Atheist group, you’re no better than religious people who isolate their children from those who think differently.

You can be good without God, but you sure don’t need God to be bad.

Funny Bible Quote #10

From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some youths came out of the town and jeered at him. "Go on up, you baldhead!" they said. "Go on up, you baldhead!"

He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.

~ 2 Kings 2:23-24, NIV

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #9

Slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.

~ 1 Peter 2:18, NIV

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Mythical Interviews: God #1

GINX: I’m here today with God, in the first of a series of interviews I have planned. My first guest is someone I hope to have back again many times—

GOD: I know how many.

GINX: Well of course you do. It’s contingent on how many times you agree to talk to me.

GOD: I am always with you, always listening.

GINX: So I hear. Kind of creepy... but that’s sort of why I feel qualified to do the interview—

GOD: Even though you’re an atheist?

GINX: I’m not going to interrupt you, don’t interrupt me.

[uncomfortable silence]

GINX: Okay, I’ll just start with the questions.

GOD: Ask away, my child.

GINX: You can stop being a stereotype at any minute, by the way. So, do I call you God or Yahweh or what?

GOD: You can call me the Infinite, the Prime Mover, He who is, the Source, the Light, tickler of Evil—

GINX: The tickler of Evil?

GOD: It sounds better in Sanskrit.

GINX: Okay, sorry to interject there. I’m just going to call you God.

GOD: As you wish.

GINX: God, where do you come from?

GOD: I exist outside of time.

GINX: Alright... but what’s your back story? Who are your parents?

GOD: I am He from whom all things emanate. I am the alpha and the omega.

GINX: What are those, multivitamins?

GOD: They’re the first and last letter of the Greek alphabet, and you know that. Quit trying to be a smart ass.

GINX: Okay, let me put this a different way... what is your earliest memory?

GOD: What?

GINX: What’s the first thing you remember?

GOD: Well... Nothing. I can remember Nothing.

GINX: You have no memory?

GOD: No, I’m saying I remember when there was not a single thing in existence.

GINX: Nothing at all, except you.

GOD: Correct.

GINX: That’s the first thing you remember, opening your eyes and there was nothing?

GOD: I don’t have eyes.

GINX: You’re ducking the question. You don’t remember being born or how you came about?

GOD: I am the first thing to exist.

GINX: God, I’ll tell you what I think.

GOD: I know what you think.

GINX: How mystical of you. I think you were abandoned at birth—

GOD: Nope.

GINX: —and that your stance on child abandonment, and subsequently your views on abortion —

GOD: No, no, no...

GINX: —are a form of Jungian projection.

GOD: That’s completely false.

GINX: Oh, really?

GOD: Yes.

GINX: What if I told you I’ve been in contact with your mother—

GOD: You didn’t!

GINX: Join us for our next installment of Mythical Interviews—

GOD: Don’t you dare!

GINX: —when I interview God’s mom. Was God a good little deity, or a terror of Biblical proportions?

Funny Bible Quote #8

Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

~ Colossians 3:18, KJV

Friday, December 4, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #7

Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to win their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

~ Colossians 3:22-24, NIV

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The True Meaning of Christmas

It’s that time of year again, when Christians start talking about “the true meaning of Christmas,” with the occasional complaint regarding the “war on Christmas.” Apparently saying “happy holidays” is an affront to Christianity, which has some sort of social monopoly over the season… and it is a season, because Christmas crap goes on sale just after Halloween these days.

Some Christians jump to the conclusion that atheists are ruining Christmas. Most atheists don’t care and are happy to take the time off from work. While there’s the occasional atheist who uses this time of year to lash out at the frustrating institution of Christianity, it’s proportionately more often Jews (who make up a population of about 1/10th that of atheists) and fundamentalist Christians who oppose Christmas displays. [Jews often protest nativity scenes, fundies protest the plethora of pagan symbols associated with the season.]

So what is the true meaning of Christmas? The birth of Jesus? Any non-believer will gleefully point out that Christmas is born from pagan holidays, though this isn’t exactly the case. Instead, an early non-Biblical reference to Jesus’ annunciation (the incarnation of Jesus) was given as being on the spring equinox (March 25th), which led scholars to just lazily count nine months forward. The adoption of the local pagan traditions that took place around this time of year came much later.

December 25th is a big one for holidays, mostly because of its association with the solstice. In the northern hemisphere, the “winter solstice” occurs in late December. It is the darkest, coldest day of the year. Many polytheistic faiths have holidays during this time, including the Norse Yuletide celebration of Thor, the birthday of Mithras, Saturnalia and the Dies Natalis Solis Invicti (“the birthday of the unconquered Sun”).

Celebrating Jesus’ birth on December 25th is incredibly arbitrary, and modern scholars are positive the date is inaccurate for several reasons. If you’re a Christian, I recommend you celebrate Real Christmas in the late spring or maybe early summer. May 20th was an early guess by Egyptian scholars. Another guess is March 28th. In either case, there’s no way Joseph would schlep Mary through the desert in the middle of winter if the baby’s legs were practically sticking out already.

As for what you should do if you want to have a strictly Christian Christmas… I am at a loss. You can’t really do the “traditional” stuff, it’s all pagan: no tree, no big feast, no mistletoe, no holly. I guess you could give gifts, since that’s in the story of Jesus’ birth, but a decent Christian avoids the lure of Mammon. And if you do succumb and give gifts to your kids, you can’t have them be from Santa Claus, his demonic elves, or his bewitched flying reindeer.

So what’s the true meaning of Christmas? There’s not much to do around December 25th. You can’t really go outside for long. There’s not much work to do [in a farming culture]. People will do anything to keep themselves busy and happy. You need something to look forward to… because this is also the day with the most suicides. Holidays are society’s anti-depressant. Sure, there are those who OD on the medication, or refuse to take it, but there’s just no helping some people.

The true message of Christmas is: “Don’t kill yourself, and buy something while you’re at it.” Most people are more than happy to celebrate Christmas. In fact, the only two groups I can imagine opposing it would be monotheists and communists (how often do they agree, huh?). Christians ought to be offended that the birth of their object of worship is a sales pitch for selling worthless plastic junk which serves only to distract people. I can’t really think of anything more un-Christlike.

Go ahead, give some gifts, decorate a tree, and wish someone “Merry Christmas” with gusto. And if they sneer and say they’re not Christian, just say, “Neither am I, Scrooge McGrinch. Take your meds!”

Funny Bible Quote #6

Let your women keep silence in the churches:
for it is not permitted unto them to speak;
but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law.

And if they will learn any thing,
let them ask their husbands at home:
for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

~ 1 Corinthians 14:34-35, KJV

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Evolution: Debate vs. Denial

There is no debate over evolution. Evolution occurs.

If you deny evolution, I urge you to explain to me what is wrong with the model I am about to present, one which has been shown to be as true as heliocentricity:

1. DNA and RNA store the basic information for creating life. (still with me?)
2. DNA and RNA function best when they copy themselves accurately.
3. DNA and RNA are imperfect, so sometimes they mess up.
4. Sometimes the error is in a location that makes it harmless, sometimes the error is harmful, and about .0000000001% of the time, the error provides a benefit.

The above happens all the time in your body. Whenever you get sick, bacteria or viruses use your body as a little world. They multiply so fast that billions of them end up in your body within a few days, and they all have to shit. Not literally, of course, but they have waste products. Most symptoms of being sick are a result of these by-products circulating in your body.

They “pollute” your body, so to speak. Sure, they’re so small you could never hope to see them with the naked eye, but they can make a giant organism like you die. Something to think about for climate change deniers.

During this crap-fest inside your body, they’re multiplying. It’s like a giant orgy in there, only no actual sex. The bacteria are just dividing once they have accumulated the necessary resources. The viruses are almost having sex, but the process is more like raping your cells, which then burst open like someone in “Alien” when the next generation is born.

During all this, most are born normal. Because they don’t reproduce sexually, they essentially clone themselves… unless one of those little mistakes occurs. If a mistake occurs, usually nothing of notice happens; those two may die early or be unable to reproduce, or they may be fine.

On rare occasions, the mistake turns out to be better than the original. The problem is, that little beneficial accident is in for an uphill battle from the start: it is surrounded by millions of other bacteria or viruses essentially just like it. They all want to multiply and spread their genetic blueprints. How is one lone mutant going to reproduce enough to compete?

Well, there’s dozens of ways documented, but my favorite is the “population bottleneck.” All bacteria have a wall, and that wall is full of doors with passcodes. Our drugs have the passcodes. Our drugs essentially blockade bacteria, because those doors are how the bacteria eat. If a single bacteria mutates just right, so that the passcode changes, our drugs stop working. That means this bacteria can keep reproducing, even during antibiotic treatment (which is also when it will be easiest for them to succeed, without any competition from other bacteria).

This is why you should always take antibiotics completely: the antibiotics kill the bulk, and your body’s own immune system cleans up the rest. If you stop the treatment, you’re liable to give the resistant mutants a fighting chance. The odds of a new drug-resistant strain evolving inside you is slim, but we don’t like risking it (because SOMEONE has to be patient zero).

These are all events we know happen. I know, it’s sad to see another tale from the Bible relegated to metaphor, but it’s not the first thing to go.

Remember the “firmament?” That bowl in the sky that holds back the waters? Religion didn’t go anywhere after we realized it didn’t exist.

Remember “geocentrism?” Yeah, we censored and oppressed people for suggesting the Earth revolved around the sun. Why? Because the Bible says otherwise!

Remember “demons?” Now we just call them “diseases” or “conditions” or “illness.” Except the mentally ill, they hold onto the idea of “demons in their head.”

Remember “slavery?” The Bible not only condones it, it prescribes it for the paying of debts and as punishment. We seem better off without it, if you ask me.

There’s no debate over evolution; there is only a group of deniers (largely in the Uneducated States of America) who refuse to acknowledge the small evidence for fear of the larger consequences. If you absolutely must, convince yourself that all life EXCEPT people evolved, and that man was designed to work just like an animal in every way, but that we are made in God’s image.

Why you worship a God who looks like a chimp is beyond me.

Funny Bible Quote #5

A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord.

~ Deuteronomy 23:2, KJV

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Funny Bible Quote #4

Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy [Babylon’s] little ones against the stones [actually rocks this time].

~ Psalm 137:9, KJV
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