Everyone Draw Mohammed Day 2011

Depicting the Islamic Prophet Mohammed is condemned by a few Hadith’s (but not by the Qu’ran). Some Muslim Fundamentalists believe even non-Muslims should be forced to abide by Islamic laws and have gone as far as to threaten violence against anyone who draws the prophet.

The first Everybody Draw Mohammed Day was held on 20 May 2010. It was conceived as an act of non-violent protest in support of free speech. Specifically, it was opposing Muslim fundamentalists who threatened violence against the creators of South Park, Parker and Stone, after they aired an episode parodying the contraversy.

Postings on RevolutionMuslim.com said that Parker and Stone could wind up like Theo van Gogh, a Dutch filmmaker who was killed by a Muslim extremist who shot him then pinned a letter to his body with a knife. The individuals running RevolutionMuslim.com claimed the postings were “not threats,” but I’m not sure how else they should be taken.

Access to Facebook was temporarily blocked by the Pakistan government, by order of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority because Facebook had an “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” page, which grew to over 100,000 participants. The Pakistan government also requested individuals contact them with “all similar URLs where such objectionable material is found.” Pakistan quickly extended the ban to include the YouTube, due to it’s “blasphemous content.” Overall, Pakistan blocked over 450 sites including: Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, and Wikipedia.

Facebook released a statement on May 19, 2010: “While the content does not violate our terms, we do understand it may not be legal in some countries. We are investigating this. In cases like this, the approach is sometimes to restrict certain content from being shown in specific countries.”

Rohadi Abdul Fatah the Indonesia, Religious Affairs Ministry director of Islam and Shariah Law, announced that Facebook was to be considered haram (forbidden) according to Muslim law.

The Pakistan embassy in the US told the Department of State that the images on Facebook “immensely hurt and discomforted the people and the government of Pakistan”; and asked the US government to “take effective measures to prevent, stop or block this blasphemous contest immediately”.

Pakistan agreed to lift the ban on Facebook after the company agreed to block pages containing the blasphemous content from users in Pakistan and India.

Religious News 4/30

What’s happening around the world, in the name of God?

Vandalizing for Jesus
http://x.co/pisschrist

Facebook Pedo Pastor
http://x.co/pedopastor

Psychic Fraud
http://x.co/psychic

Noah’s Ark
http://x.co/noahsark

Don’t Say Gay Bill passed
http://x.co/dontsaygay

AZ “Nullification Act”
http://x.co/nullify

AZ Birther Bill
http://x.co/birther

Day of Prayer
http://x.co/prayerday

Multi-National Superman
http://x.co/USsuperman

Email — Adam and Eve

Not all my email is from people who disagree with me.  Below is an email from someone who enjoys my  blog posts.

I love your stuff.  I just wanted to tell you that, and offer you words of encouragement.  I know the pain of telling someone a truth and having them rationalize it and dismiss you without having presented any argument.  Most of the time, they don’t even have the capacity to recognize defeat in a debate.  I think that the faith philosophy forces them to repress their natural inclination to logic, reason, and skepticism.  I sympathize with them because I used to be a Christian: terrified to even think anything critical of my faith or my savior.  This is an exchange that really sums up the frustration if you want to read it.  I just wanted to say keep it up.  You’re welcome to post my response all over your blog.

Best wishes,

Brad

Her first response to the knowledge of good and evil argument:

I think you misunderstood the story completely. The point was that, they were created so pure, without a sin, they were innocent like children, but they were not like children incapable to sin. Adam an Eve was able to choose. They also were free to choose. They were not slaves. As you don’t force your loved ones to love you, God didn’t force them to love Him, even though he made a very wonderful world for them and loved them very much. But they chose not to obey his rules, they cheated God, so they were actually evil in God’s eyes! So how could God then let them live forever as long as they didn’t keep his word? Can God live together with evil? Of course not! And that’s when God chose to make us mortal, and let us suffer in this world.
As you know from that time men were sinners, and never could stop from sinning all over again more and more. Now we inherit the sin to each other, also help each other to do it.

My response:

Maybe you’ve missed the point I made: Adam and Eve were ignorant about the WHOLE subject of good and evil—they were utterly incapable of thinking about it, talking about it, or making any decisions about it. There is no way you can say it is morally just to punish someone for doing wrong when they have no concept of wrong. Likewise, it would be moral abasement to praise the creature for doing something that was morally proper, because he couldn’t have known it was good. Any decision he makes concerning good and evil is nullified by his ignorance. And if he does something good or evil, it is completely by accident and has nothing to do with his ability for discernment in such matters—because he has no discerning ability whatsoever. Let’s pretend that you had a child with a disability. And you told him not to do something, but he did it anyway. But also pretend that a part of his condition means that he cannot decipher language very well. In essence, it doesn’t matter what you told him, he can’t understand you. But after you discovered that he disobeyed you, with the full knowledge of his condition, you begin to beat him mercilessly until he screams in anguish and tears fill his eyes. You continue to beat him and as he begs for mercy, you kill him. This what god does in that story; could you do that to your own child? Adam and Eve are not human beings, they are Ken and Barbie dolls. They have a severe mental handicap: they are not just under informed, they are absolutely ignorant. The only thing happening before the fall of “man” was Adam naming animals all day and Eve lounging around with snakes. There may not have been a care in the world, but they wouldn’t have known it because they were just two oblivious husks of human beings. If anything, the “Fall of man” was the best thing that ever happened to him. The problem with the theological connotations behind that wretched story is that it tells people that they are wicked, evil sinners, and there is nothing they can do about it. What a terrible concept! First man is given the boot (from what we are told is a good place) for, when it comes down to the details, being ignorant. Now, post-Fall, he’s born evil, capable of nothing but sinning, except for the chance occasion that something else (but never him) commits a good act but uses his body like a puppet—and he had better make sure to direct the credit for such good deeds to the higher power and not himself or else it will be hubris. I don’t see how it’s defensible but through blind faith and a mind always prepared to rationalize every truth that contradicts it’s belief—which, as I showed earlier, is based on obfuscation. The main point that I want to underline concerning the texts, which is true of the Ark, the Fall, and every other story in the Bible is that they should never be interpreted as historical facts; they should be interpreted as symbolic, metaphysical ideas. To interpret the stories as historical facts is to miss the whole point behind them which is to present a metaphysical or symbolic idea.

Her Response:

Adam and Eve were not ignorant at all. God let them know that you must not eat from this tree, and that was an order, but they didn’t listen to God, can’t you see the difference? They did something that God didn’t want them to do, so that a sin. They were not incapable to understand as you are saying, it’s the opposite, they knew God but just liked “more” than what they got, but lost even what they had.

There are very evil and wicked people ,very bad bad people, so it’s not a terrible concept, it’s reality.

Thank you for the kind words, I will definitely put that on the blog. I always appreciate a good well-worded argument. Here is the approach I like to take when I’m discussing the Genesis creation story:

God told Adam and Eve “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

The serpent told them: Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”

Now they have heard 2 claims, one from God and one from the serpent. Both claims were told to individuals who do not yet possess the ability to tell right from wrong or good from evil. (The tree was the “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil” to say they already knew good from evil means this was just a normal tree and not a tree of “knowledge” as the Bible God claimed.)

According to Genesis 3:22, God said: “Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil” confirming that the serpent told the truth when he described the results of eating the fruit.

Adam and Eve didn’t die the day they ate the fruit, but they did become “as gods, knowing good and evil.” God said Adam and Eve would “surely die” the same day they ate the fruit – that didn’t happen – instead, God realized they could still become immortal so he kicked them out of the garden. “… lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden…” (If someone uses the “a day to God is like 1000 years to mankind” argument, they’re saying God lacks basic conversion skills.)

Sure Adam and Eve knew something would happen if they eat from the tree, they had been told they will either “surely die,” or will “not surely die” and will become “as gods, knowing good and evil.” They didn’t know that obeying God was good and disobeying God was evil. They simply had two contradictory accounts of what would happen if they ate the fruit… and to top it off, the Bible says the fruit looked good.

Notice what God did NOT tell Adam and Eve.

He did not say: “Watch out for the serpent, he lies.”

He did not say: “If you choose to disobey me you will condemn you and all your children and every future generation of mankind to be tortured for eternity.”

He did not say: “If you eat the fruit you won’t actually die the same day, but you will be kicked out of the garden and forced to work for a living and have painful childbirth – and I will create poisonous plants and man-eating animals, and microscopic flesh-eating bacteria who will eat your future children alive.”

It’s like me telling you I have a quarter is in my right hand, and someone else telling you it is in my left hand.  Then asking you to guess which hand the quarter was in and telling you I will kill you if you get it wrong.  You didn’t see me place the quarter, so you wouldn’t know who was telling the truth.

Christians often argue that Adam and Eve did die that day, spiritually.   Saying they died spiritually is to simply ignore the meaning of the words used. The word translated as “surely die” in Genesis 2:17 is “muwth” it is the same word used in Genesis 5:5 to describe the physical death of Adam “And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.” It’s also the same word used to describe the physical death of: Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah, Haran, and Terah. (And that’s just in the first 11 books of Genesis) It’s also the word used for the “thou shalt surely die” threat God made against Abimelech in a dream (Gen 20:7) if he didn’t return the prophet’s wife.

The same word, the same threat, from the same God, in the same book – yet the same people would argue that the meaning is completely different. The same word is used more than 500 other times in the Bible, each time referring to physical death — except (according to some apologists) this ONE time.

I hope that helps with your discussion.

Thanks again for the email,

Your friend,
Shawn

Religious News 4/17

Lights Off For God

When God returns, he will light the new Jerusalem with his glory – until then, even holy sites need to pay their electric bill.

According to the Associated Press, one of Israel’s most popular Jewish pilgrimage destinations, the tomb of Moses Maimonide, had it’s electricity shut off earlier this month due to an unpaid electric bill totally $11,500.

Maimonides was a preeminent Jewish philosopher and one of the greatest Torah scholars and physicians of the Middle Ages, his tomb nonetheless draws many devout, people come to pray around the clock.

The tomb remains open during the day, but is now closed at night. Signs at the entrance say the site is closed at night “due to a power glitch.”

http://x.co/lightsoff


A Sexually Active Celibate Priest

A Roman Catholic priest with a worldwide television ministry based in San Bernadino has admitted to having a sexual relationship with his cousin, a county schools superintendent on California’s Central Coast.

70 year old priest, Michael Manning, will be leaving Wordnet, the worldwide television ministry he founded 1978 in order to give himself more time to reflect on his relationship with Monterey Schools Superintendent Nancy Kotowski, his second cousin.

Manning confessed to the affair after a newspaper questioned him about copies of correspondence between the kissing cousins that they had received.

Manning claims to no longer have a sexual relationship with his cousin, he says the relationship ended two years ago.

“The reality is I was living two lives: one as a priest who was vowed to celibacy and another life as a sexually active man…”

No, you were living one life, as a sexually active priest.

He claims he has sought and received forgiveness from God. “That’s the neat thing with Jesus. There can be the chance of starting again,”

Marriage between 1st cousins is legal in California, and both participants are adults. Personally I don’t think they did anything wrong. That’s the neat thing without Jesus, you don’t need to ask forgiveness for a legal act with a consenting adult. – and you don’t need to retire from your job for not doing anything wrong.

http://x.co/cousins


Teachers Who Refuse to Teach are Protected

Earlier this month the House of Representatives in Tennessee voted 70-28 in favor of a bill that would protect teachers from disciplinary action if they challenge scientific subjects including, but not limited to: evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning in their classrooms.

The bill starts by stating “An important purpose of science education is to inform students about scientific evidence and to help students develop critical thinking skills necessary
to becoming intelligent, productive, and scientifically informed citizens;”

Unfortunately, it then goes on to protect teachers who subvert this “important purpose” by allowing them to present unscientific subjects, like Intelligent Design.

An identical bill is up for vote by the Senate Education Committee at the end of the month. If the vote follows the party line, it will be signed into law, allowing Tennessee to join Louisiana as the second state with specific protections for teaching anti-evolution rhetoric.

http://x.co/inteldes


Sue the Pope!

The Pope and Vatican officials were previously considered immune from lawsuits under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act of 1976. However a Ninth Circuit ruled that the Vatican can be held accountable for priest’s actions under the “tort exceptions” clause, because they created the conditions in which sexual abuse could occur. The Vatican appealed the ruling, but in June of 2010 the Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal, allowing the ruling to stand and opening the door for the priests, Vatican officials, and even the Pope to be sued.

Now the Pope and two top Vatican officials have been served with court papers associated with the molestation case in which 200 deaf children in a Milwaukee-area school were allegedly molested by Reverend Lawrence C. Murphy between 1950 and 1974.

Reverend Murphy has since died, but the case continues because of the allegation that the Vatican attempted to systematically cover-up the case. The suit alleges that the Pope and two other top Vatican officials knew about the accusations and called off investigations, obstructed justice, and put other children in harms way.

http://x.co/popearrest


Pornography Causes Spontaneous Human Combustion

Proof that pornography can be dangerous to your health.

For seven years, Roger Huang, a pastor who runs a rescue mission in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district, has been trying to shut down the sex shops there. “I don’t know if you believe in prayer,” Huang said, “but … the last seven years, every August, I go to every store and pray that it [will] be closed down.

This week he may have seen a sign that his efforts are working.

On Wednesday, a man burst into flames while inside one of those porn shops, police said.

Could this bizarre incident be attributed to a higher power?

“I believe so. I definitely believe so,” Huang told AOL News, adding that he hopes the unidentified man is recovering from the burns.

An employee said the man had been watching a film in the back of the store when he suddenly ran out screaming and on fire.

Witnesses reportedly saw the burning man running out of the Golden Gate Adult Superstore at about 6:20 p.m. Wednesday. The man ran past stunned onlookers and collapsed.

There was a private ambulance company in the area that witnessed the collapse, they were able to extinguish the flames and call it into dispatch.

The man, whose name has not been released, was taken to the burn center at St. Francis Memorial Hospital, where he is being treated for first-, second- and third-degree burns that cover 90 percent of his body.

“He suffered life-threatening injuries,” Dangerfield said, adding, “He’s still recovering.”

http://x.co/pornburn


Stab Me to Prove Jesus

The student group, Freethinkers at Virginia Tech, sponsored a local “Ask an Atheist” table on Wednesday.

Witnesses said Alexander M. Huppert, a freshman university studies major, stood near the table for nearly an hour.

Huppert eventually approached the table, borrowed a pen and drew a circle with a cross inside on the back of his hand.

A senior psychology major, Nicole Schrand, said Huppert then asked students at the table to stab him in the cross with the pen to “prove to us God existed.”

The students declined.

“We don’t believe in assaulting people,” Schrand said. “We’re very against assaulting people.”

When Schrand and the other students declined to stab his hand, Huppert grabbed another pen and began stabbing himself in the back of the hand.

Wade Duvall left the table to call 911. Tyler Pease, a member of Campus Crusade for Christ, convinced Huppert to giving him the pen.

Huppert attempted to confront Duvall after seeing him on the phone, but several people at the table stood between the two.

Police were on the scene within a few minutes. Huppert did not cooperate with the officer’s commands, and a struggle ensued. Duvall and Pease both assisted the officer in subduing Huppert.

While in custody Huppert broke out a police car window and assaulted two other officers. None of the officers’ injuries required medical attention, and no other individuals were injured during the incident.

How stabbing yourself in the hand, or having someone else stab you in the hand is supposed to prove the existence of God has not yet been explained.

That puts it on par with many of William Lane Craigs arguments.

http://x.co/stab


Jesus Has Some Competition

Proof that Jesus and Mary are not the only people to appear in processed food.

A jelly bean bearing a resemblance of Prince Williams bride-to-be, Kate Middleton, has been found. If you’re interested in owning the miraculous bean, the owners hope to sell the bean on eBay.

http://x.co/katebean