Pulpit Time

Apr. 9th, 2009 03:13 am
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
I'm going to paste this here. It meanders a bit, but I think that generally for off-the-cuff and no editing, it's pretty decent writing.

It's a response to an e-mail I received, which was in response to someone's comment that
"Gays have the same choice as straights. To marry someone of the opposite sex."


I responded:
"Just because being straight makes you miserable and unhappy doesn't mean everyone else should be as masochistic as you are. "


Must have hit a nerve because I got the following response:
Do you normally like to assume how other people feel? Statistically, according the the Pew Research study, the very highest levels of happiness are reported among people who were middle and upper class, married, Republicans, who have children and are regularly involved spiritual activity. Anyways, I hope the best of everyone. I hope homosexuals are happy even if they don't want me to be. My happiness doesn't come from someone else giving me permission.


And then I went off on this tear which sounds really good to me at 3AM after many long days at work. Warning! The stuff behind the cut starts snarky but rapidly degenerates into the most ultra-hippie supernova lovefest you've ever seen. View it at your own peril

Read more... )

and in summation... If you need me, I'll be levitating at the top of a nearby mountain.

Siasl

Jul. 25th, 2008 04:02 pm
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Perhaps I'm getting older, or perhaps reading on a chapter every day or so keeps the rage from building up. Whatever the case, though I've been quite tempted at several points, I haven't YET thrown Stranger in a strange land against the wall yet although it has quite grated on me at several points.

I think the only part I've found interesting thus far was Jubal Hershaw's views on religion. Man, I'm slow to catch on. His view is word-for-word almost absolutely identical to mine. The whole spiel about all religions being equally likely or unlikely and that it'd be a pretty lousy sort of God who'd prefer one over the other and the universe being so big that God probably doesn't care if you do X, Y, or Z. Even the bit about how he'd rather spend eternity in Hell than kiss up to an abusive God. It's almost verbatim from my head. Uncanny.

Curious. I thought this was a popular book and yet I've never really seen that POV expressed anywhere outside of me or this book. Surely other people have thought of this. I'm surprised it isn't widely accepted as the only sensible answer to anyone who's ever thought at length on the subject of religion. The question isn't whether or not God/Gods/magic exist but the value/credibility of religion.

The really positive thing about reading this is that, I came to it independently. Sure, lots of people have contributed to me fitting it all together and offered little pieces, but the result I reached was something I found for myself. Not something dictated by my parents, church, country, or social network.

No two groups (to my knowledge) have ever independently developed the same religion. Particularly not in abstract terms. Stories about the moon and the sun as gods may be somewhat common in many of them but you'd find a lot of devils in the details and their requirements and customs would have some radical differences. Even groups like jews, muslims, and christians all share the same root religion but have sharp divisions between them, and subdivisions of those religions are nearly as bitterly divided.

Oddly enough though, I also share the view of Mike, the Man from Mars. I am God. You are God, the trees and the wind are God. Not in the sense that I can raise a mountain with the wave of a finger, but more that we're all a part of everything. Even inanimate objects exist and that's something incredibly awesome and magical when you consider the vast emptiness of space. We're something unfathomably complex and amazing. sub-atomic particles structured just so to form atoms. Atoms linked together in just the right way to form different compounds, those compounds interacting and exchanging with other compounds. Those chemical exchanges and compounds sometimes forming what we call life in the form of cells and their myriad sub components. In us, those cells form organs which all work together to make an animal and somehow just the right firing of chemistry, electrons, and environment has produced us. Creatures that can move beyond their base needs and create. We're making the next level of complexity right now. We have been since the dawn of man. Fashioning crude tools and refining them more and more. Eventually creating machines which will one day become to us, what we are to cells, and in those machines, entire new universes are and will be born. We ARE the wheels within wheels within wheels. We are God.

Want to know the secret of the universe? Why everything exists and where it all came from? Want to know the mind of God? It's simple... BECAUSE. That's it. It exists because it does. What else would the universe do if it didn't exist? All the rules and everything else, gravity and all that are necessary to making this because function. There could be and most likely are an infinite other number of universes (either parallel or serial) with completely different sets of rules. There's at least 7 billion on this planet alone. All your dreams, ideas, and emotions, creating their own infinite expanses with their own sets of rules. Every story that is written, every song, every painting is a world of its own.

Think about it. What's the end goal of science? Isn't it always at the very end to build better universes? Some people think they can do that through war, others through inspiration and exploration but we're all still going. All dreaming of a better world. Some of us may only dream of a comfy chair and a decent nap while others have grander dreams but we're all basically searching for the same thing, be we astrophysicists, computer programmers, evangelists, artists, writers, parents, alcoholics, heroine addicts, dogs, cats, insects, even plants. Everything is God. Everything is an isolate universe infinite unto itself. As thinking creatures, we can chose to be either, both, neither, or some complex and varied combination of all of them.

Recently, someone called me a bodhisattvas. (After looking it up) I think I could nearly accept that label though I think I would say that from my current vantage: On the road to enlightenment, the only destination is the journey and the only truth is none. (In other words, I'm no smarter than anyone else and no closer to 'the truth')
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
A friend mentioned an article about a convicted sex offender winning a 57 Million Dollar lottery jackpot.

http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2008/06/19/ap5133840.html

I thought I'd mention this because usually when you hear about large jackpot winners, they're invariably quoted as thanking god and it's a miracle and blah blah blah. So. Here's a fine example, that it's just random chance.

I know, there will be people tempted to say that it's the power of the devil... Namely, the same people who would praise Jesus if THEY won the lottery.

That's how the world works. It's 'Gods will' when something good happens to you. It's 'the work of the devil' when it happens to someone you don't like.
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Ah, the time of year for lies, greed, self-importance, and gross consumerism. Now before you jump on the "Aaaa! Liberals! War on Christmas!" bandwagon, please hear me out and wait for the end. I actually more or less support the holiday. I just find it annoying.

I'm being lazy and drove to work instead of biking this morning and so I listened to the radio on the way. Between the obnoxious diamond industry ads (which are a long rant unto themselves) and the obnoxious car ads (another good rant) there was an obnoxious Duracell ad.
Did you know a certain gentleman at the North Pole uses Duracell for all those toys he has to deliver on Christmas Eve


I admit I was taken aback by this claim. Now of course, they never say Santa Claus but given that the North Pole is in the middle of an ocean and no one actually lives there, let alone flies around giving toys on Christmas Eve, it's fair to say that most people are going to fill in this particular fictional character. That's like saying Jesus's last supper was at McDonalds or something.

What a claim! He uses these batteries in all the toys! HEY KIDS, IF YOUR TOYS HAVE ANY OTHER BRAND OF BATTERIES, THEY DIDN'T COME FROM SANTA!

Okay, sure, Santa Claus is a marketing construct that's been used to pimp merchandise for the past hundred and fifty years. That's the beauty of a fake celebrity. You can claim anything you want about them and he'll never file suit against you.

That brings me to the second part of this rant. I've never really understood why parents feel compelled to lie to children every year. *Children are greedy self-serving little creatures. So why do parents go along with a lie to kids that is basically, "Magic will give you everything your selfish little heart desires!" It makes all kinds of sense for the corporations selling stuff, of course. Parents are so desperate to keep the secret that they drive themselves into debt every year to shower their children in cheap crap that the child will probably be bored of after a few days.

I suppose the other half of it is the selfishness on the part of the adults. In the month between Thanksgiving and Christmas (US biased commentary) they can pretend they're decent people and drop a 50cent can of beets into the bin at the grocery store to make up for a year of looking the other way when near homeless people and cutting in queues and running traffic lights and so on. Of course, they'll do more of those other things since traffic is bad and they have to be FIRST to get this year's MUST HAVE items.

However, it's all so they can pretend they're selfless by giving the kids a GREAT Christmas with Santa's name on every package, and mom and dad's name on every bill, quietly taking one for the spirit of the holiday.

Seriously parents... Think back to when you were a kid. Was christmas EVER fun, or was it an over-hyped day where you were disappointed you didn't get a solid gold pony with a jet engine and lasers and then you had to put on a monkey show for your relatives. Christmas is all about ego for adults. **LOOK WHAT OGG MAKE! LOOK WHAT OGG CAN BUY! OGG GREAT! OGG POWERFUL! OGG MAKE MORE OGGS! OGG LIVE FOREVER!!! It's really all about ego for the adults involved. Of course, on the child end of things, I don't know what is good. Certainly there is a difference between gifts and rewards and not everything should be rewards. I'm not even going to pretend to know what's best for children. I just dislike the lies people tell themselves at Christmas time.

I said at the beginning that I was generally in favor of Christmas and I should tie up that claim. Of course, like most christmas promises, it probably wasn't quite what you were expecting and the air of goodwill may ring a little hollow in the ears of others but... Tis the season. So yes. I like Christmas. I like the magical thinking and particularly I like the lie of the fat man, that's fed to kids year after year. I like that he's a symbol of consumerism and greed and that children are used as pawns for corporations to make a quick buck. I like it all, not for the crowds or the artificial good-will or some glowing memory.

I like it BECAUSE it's fake. I like it because it's all transparent crap and eventually EVERY child wakes up to a morning where they realize there is no Santa Claus. The great thing about this isn't death of innocence, but rather the beginning of questioning. When you learn Santa isn't real, it gets those little wheels turning. If Santa isn't real, what about the Easter Bunny? Or God? It's most fortuitous that christians co-opted old weird pagan holidays and greeting-card companies then took those icons out of context to ridiculous levels. It makes discovery of fake-magic so much more timely with regard to considering religion in the same vein. I owe the fat man much.

Without the help of Santa, Peter Cottontail, and the tooth fairy, I might never have escaped the ignorant, hateful, and self-destructive religious beliefs of my mother. Thanks, Santa. In the end, you gave me the best gift anyone has ever given me. You gave me doubt and made me think for myself. You took away magic but you gave me the entire universe on my own terms and taught me to believe in myself. You gave me the power to make my own dreams and made me who I am today.

*No, I don't hate kids. ALL animals are greedy and self-serving. We humans just learn to try and be better than our base desires and kids generally haven't quite got the hang of it.

**Shamelessly stolen from Nina Paley! http://www.ninapaley.com/Flash2000/PaternalInstinct.swf
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Logically, I know this is a huge waste of time. What I've done is the equivalent of going to the produce aisle, picked up a rotten cantaloupe, drawn a face on it, and talked to it as if it were a real human being. None the less, it felt good. It makes me sad when people use the impossibility of proving a negative as an excuse to be hateful self-righteous little pricks. There's one theme that's common in nearly all religions and even among us horrible atheists: Be excellent to each other. Fail that and you have a far higher chance of failing whatever God might truly want you to do than because you didn't get down on your knees and perform spiritual blow-jobs on Sunday.

Anyhow... In response to this:

http://rhjunior.livejournal.com/389908.html

I posted this (Let me know if there's some flaw in it. My understanding of the world is an ongoing process):


Let's see. Will you fearfully delete this because you can't argue it or will you try to argue the semantics of one small point and ignore the 99% that you can't argue because you can't handle it. Let's find out:

God is irrelevant.

I know you're mindbogglingly stupid but try to follow along. I'll use small words.

There have been thousands of different religions in the history of mankind.
Until recently it was nearly impossible for someone in one place to know the religion in another place.

That leaves you with a few possibilities:
  1. God doesn't exist
    • No one is punished for their behavior because there is no god.
  2. God does exist
    • Most religions have some common stuff "don't steal/kill/hate" but otherwise have a LOT of variation in ritual and requirements. That gives you three possibilities:
      1. God's a pretty nice entity.
        • There's a lot of variation in religions so as long as you try to be a decent person it doesn't matter what you believe. God is going to treat you according to how you've treated others and the world around you and even atheists go to heaven.
        • If this is God, religion is purely comfort-food. You like steak, I like spaghetti. No need to argue over that.
      2. There's a somewhat parental God
        • God wants you to follow some path but isn't going to beat the crap out of you for screwing up. You're only human after all. You'll die, you'll get your scolding from the horse's mouth and you'll feel foolish and atone.
        • Here again, so long as you try to do what's right, it doesn't matter what path you take.
      3. God is an asshole
        • There's only ONE true religion and everyone else is going to SUFFER!
        • How do you know your religion is the RIGHT religion?
        • God is unknowable, so how can you know you're on the right path?
        • Even if this God does exist, why would you want to worship him? He's petty and cruel. What's the point of eternally torturing everyone who doesn't get down on their knees and call him master like some sick BDSM scene?
      4. There are multiple gods with strict rules
        • That implies their power is limited so why stick with a demanding an cruel god when you could go find the lord of the fluffy bunnies?
        • There's no reason to worship a hateful and judgemental god unless you yourself are hateful and judgemental.


So either just being a good person is as good as any religion or God's a mean bastard and 99% chance you'll pick the wrong religion and get the snot kicked out of you for all eternity. In the later case, why worship him at all? Better to die on your feet than live on your knees. I'll take my odds with following my conscience and if that god exists, I'll fight him, and even if I lose and spend eternity suffering in Hell, I'll at least know that I stood my ground against a petty tyrant.

Consider that bit. If tortured, sure, I might verbally recant and cry out for mercy. Who wouldn't. But there is NO amount of torture that can ever make me feel the torturer is doing me a service so on this point, your God can never defeat me. Destroy me perhaps, make me beg for mercy yes, but we will always know it was He who sinned. He who was selfish, petty, and unworthy. I did the best I could with the knowledge and tools I had.

So.... Let's see. Will you argue some irrelevant point, or simply delete this comment or lock the post, foam at the mouth with some idiotically circular 'logic' and prove yourself an idiot yet again, or (most probably) run screaming to a bunch of your friends and have them all jump on the band wagon with character assassinations and mindless gibbering because if you can't kill the message, at least you can kill the messenger. (And there's plenty of dirt you can find on me and use to call me names)

Of course, you could surprise me and actually think, but I strongly doubt that will happen. Remember of course, that even if you claim it, if God exists, he'll know if you are lying. If he's particularly craven, he may even pat you on the head for it. Good dog.
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Saw this link on a friend's blog and thought I'd forward it.

http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta_christinas_weblog/2007/10/atheists-and-an.html

I think though that I feel like it's a little flawed to accept the label of 'angry' because it means that people who want to can immediately dismiss anything you say as being 'emotional'. I don't generally feel angry. Sometimes I'm rather annoyed and every once in a while I do get angry with religious groups but on the whole I'm pretty happy with myself.

I'd contend really that it's religious people who are hateful towards atheists and other religions who have the emotional investment. They feel threatened by science or the existence of other religions. I think proselytizing is generally born out of fear and doubt. I get the feeling that the loudest religious people don't QUITE believe their own bullshit and that's why they have to push it on everyone else so loudly because if no one else doubts, it will be easier for them to forget their own doubts.

Sure I get annoyed with pushy religious people but it's they who are full of fear and hate. My irritation is but a response to their sickness.

Edit:
Okay. I admit that these two from that list do routinely annoy me more than all the others combined:


I get angry when believers say at the beginning of an argument that their belief is based on reason and evidence, and at the end of the argument say things like, "It just seems that way to me," or, "I feel it in my heart"... as if that were a clincher. I mean, couldn't they have said that at the beginning of the argument, and not wasted my fucking time? My time is valuable and increasingly limited, and I have better things to do with it than debating with people who pretend to care about evidence and reason but ultimately don't.

Bible_magnifying_glassI'm angry that I have to know more about their fucking religion than the believers do. I get angry when believers say things about the tenets and texts of their religion that are flatly untrue, and I have to correct them on it.
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Last night on the way to an appointment, I was behind a car that had a Jesus fish and one of those license plate things with words on it. This one read:

WARNING: In case of the Redemption, this vehicle will be unmanned.

... Isn't that a conundrum? I mean Vanity is the #1 sin and it seems rather arrogant to me that someone driving a gas-guzzling SUV (Single passenger, I might add) can be absolutely sure that God wants HIM specifically. If you're SURE you're doing EXACTLY what God wants, you're a pretty vain little fuck. I mean wow. You know the machinations of the creator of the universe. That's quite a claim! You paid probably twenty bucks to buy that and put it on your vehicle and proclaim to everyone how smart and how much more good you are than everyone else around you. You could have given that money to charity. You could have bought a vehicle that cost only $14K instead of $50K and given THAT to charity. You could have saved $40/mo+ on fuel and given THAT to charity. But no. Not you. You slap God on your bumper because he's not in your heart but you think you're clever enough that if you give him enough lip service, he'll somehow miss your sins. You're going straight to Hell.


Hmm. You know... If I weren't an atheist, my idea of Heaven would be spending eternity in Hell punishing 'good christians'. Particularly ones who'd cut me off in traffic. :)
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
http://www.voanews.com/english/Entertainment/2007-09-12-voa13.cfm

Gee... What was I just saying the other day?

http://dv-girl.livejournal.com/623848.html

Thanks universe. It's nice to know that I'm not just paranoid. Though honestly, I'd rather it be the case that I were.

Mini-Rant

Sep. 5th, 2007 11:20 am
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
I am SO fucking sick of seeing student films that have an end credit that says, PRAISE TO GOD especially when they're a project worked on by a group of a dozen people and the school isn't a religious institution. You know it was just the fuckwad doing the end credits who stuck that in there and their classmates were just too polite to say anything.

If I'm ever in a position to vote on any animation competitions, that will get them an automatic fail. That bugs me. All the other people who worked hard on something getting a fail because of a a few asshats. Also, I know there are lots of people who will give them EXTRA points for being so pious. If you said, PRAISE THE FLYING SPAGHETTI MONSTER they'd likely react the way I am and take offense and silently ding the piece for it.

You know, from that point of view, it's a credit that makes sense too. Most judges tend to be old obnoxious religious asshats, and everyone wants to WIN and even if there is a liberal judge, liberals are more likely to forgive your asshattery because we'd rather not think ourselves intolerant. (and in truth, after I got over being irked, I'd probably only ding them a little for it because I'd rather NOT be like conservatives)

By contrast, conservatives revel in the glory of being intolerant. Not to mention, since it doesn't offend them, they'd probably not even notice their own reaction, just nod approvingly and go on. ISo putting that credit in there helps you WIN. You've got nothing to lose and everything to gain by adding it. Hurray. :/ Isn't it nice to be reminded that you'll always be on the losing side just because you're inclined to play fair and because you're a minority?
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
So three sociopathic religious fascists walk into a Senate...

Except this isn't a joke and it wasn't in Iran. A group of fundamentalcase Christian-screw-heads walked into the US congress and started screaming their jihadist messages.

http://electioncentral.tpmcafe.com/blog/electioncentral/2007/jul/12/christian_right_activists_disrupt_hindu_chaplain_in_the_senate

This really scares me. These ignorant ass stains are getting bolder and braver and more powerful by the day. How long before we become Iran or Germany? How do we stop them from destroying the freedoms that made this country a good place?

Link swiped from Kyhwana.

WWJT?

Apr. 11th, 2007 02:20 am
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Apparently there was recently some blogging against theocracy thing that I missed out on. Maybe just as well. I've been trying to make fewer scathing posts about religion but anyhow.. In responding to someone I asked them a question which I now find myself still thinking about an hour or so later.

If Jesus was here today, would he consider himself Good or Evil?

What I mean is... If he showed up today and looked back on all the things that'd been done in his name both selfless and cruel, would he see his influence on the world as positive or negative? Not how he would judge the people who'd done the deeds. How would he see himself? If he thought his impact had been positive, negative, or none at all, what would that mean?

For some, I'm sure the answer is as simple as "He's good therefore he must see himself as good because he's good!" but the guy I read about is all forgiveness and sorrow and seems more the type to blame himself for every atrocity committed in his name. The Jesus I read about might consider himself an abomination and regret his legacy as Einstein regretted the atomic bomb.

I could ramble on with my thoughts on the subject for quite some time but perhaps it's better left as something to contemplate. There are many many more possibilities than the two I've presented.
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Trying to post about religion and politics less unless I'm really doing something to make a positive change, but this article was good enough I thought I'd pass it along. It's rather chilling to read.

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20070128_christianists_on_the_march/

---

"What is the Nature of God?"

CLICK...CLICK...WHIRRR...CLICK...=BEEP!=
1 QT. SOUR CREAM
1 TSP. SAUERKRAUT
1/2 CUT CHIVES.
STIR AND SPRINKLE WITH BACON BITS.
pasithea: glowing girl (Default)
Buh?

Christian cartoon produced in the 70's against mormons.

Freaky. Makes them sound like Scientologists.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7v_V8qSIIo

February 2012

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