Sunday, October 10, 2010

Biblical pro-slavery stance disproves that the bible is a moral book

""'As for your male and your female slaves, whom you may have; of the nations that are around you, from them you may buy male and female slaves."
Author: Leviticus 25 Verses #: 44

"You masters, do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with him."
Author: Ephesians 6 Verses #: 9

Moses and the prophets of the Old Testament did not speak against slavery.  Jesus did not speak out against slavery.  The apostles did not speak out against slavery.  The church did not speak out against slavery until 1800 years after the life and death of Jesus. The southern baptist denomination was developed and created to speak out for the practice of slave owners and slavery in the south.  It was through reasoning, justice and logic and conscience that mankind finally spoke "over" the bible's morality and declared slavery to be wrong, cruel and unjust and immoral.  The bible did not establish this truth.  Man evolved and advanced and listened to his inner morality and declared slavery illegal, but only after a very bitter civil war.  Christians and non-christians alike spoke out against the practice of slavery out of human reasoning and a sense of morality and justice, not because the bible outlawed the practice of buying and selling other human beings for selfish motives and greed, but because man's morality finally broke through the lack of compassion that had existed for thousands of years.  I believe that without the bible the practice of slavery would never have taken hold in western advanced societies.  Racism fueled a morality that declared someone of another color to simply be "non-human" and thus suseptible to being marginalized and dominated and bought and sold as you would buy a pig or a mule or a cow.  Female slaves could not "own" and control the rearing of their own children and could not hope for a lifetime lover and companion.  Jesus could have spoken out against the practice of slavery.  This truth puts the bible in question.  This truth puts the morality of Jesus, the apostles and Moses in question.  This truth begs the question of why would a god allow and stand silent for 4,000 years while "his" books were being written and "his" thoughts being told.  This truth of silence forces one to ask "Is God Moral?"   Who needs a god that does not recognize a basic and simple human truth?  The above are just two of many bible verses that condone slavery and legitimate it with biblical laws, rather than rebuking and denouncing it.  The bible is not a moral book.  The bible condons what should have been condemned.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Contradictions over Jesus' genealogy by Thomas Quinn

The inerrant word of God, you say? Huh... That claim lacks a certain Christian humility, don't you think? Especially since there is no greater evidence of the Bible's human origins than its frequent disagreements with itself. A perfect god wouldn't allow this sort of thing. What would be the point? If he's willing to show off by parting oceans and stuff, he'd certainly want to impress us with a boo-boo free biography. Alas, it ain't so. Here is just a partial list of scriptural inconsistencies in the New Testament. Many of them are genuinely unimportant...all the more reason why there shouldn't be any inconsistencies. But here they are.

Matt 1:6-7 The genealogy of Jesus runs through David's son, Solomon.

Luke 3:23-31 The genealogy of Jesus runs through David's son, Nathan.

Matt 1:16 Joseph's father is Jacob.

Luke 3:23 Joseph's father is Heli.

Matt 1:17 There are 28 generations from David to Jesus.

Luke 3:23-38 There are 43 generations from David to Jesus.

Read more »

Posted by Thomas Quinn at 5:53 PM 2 comments

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Can and does Jesus heal PTSD?

In the dark ages there were very few medicines and even less knowledge of the human body and the human mind.  Currently, army psychologists are giving soldiers suffering from PTSD and stress disorders a $5.00 bible and telling them the cure is in reading it.  This "cure" is  not unlike something a priest might have done a thousand years ago.  There is no scientific or natural  evidence that god can or is healing the minds and bodies of these soldiers of accumulated stress.  This application of non-medicine  puts the burden of  healing and wellness back on the ill soldier.  This does three things for the military: 1. It lowers their costs and responsibility.  What could be easier and cheaper than saying here is a $5.00 bible and now it is up to you to read it until you are well.  The burden of recovery is on the ill soldier and an invisible and silent and absent deity that the soldier is told to tap into for his health resources.  Surely anyone can recognize that this is medicine out of the dark ages.  Just because the army does not want to recognize the problem and hire the psychologists and psychiatrists that could apply the best current science to the problem, they make PTSD a spiritual problem.  This is cruel spiritual abuse.  In the end, the blame for someone not getting better is his/her own fault.  This is just wrong.  2.  The dependency on the bible rather than reason and logic makes for a soldier who is separated from reason and logic and placed squarely in the realm of a 4,000 year old deity that was born out of a fighting people in the deserts in the middle east.  Believing in a deity that cannot be verified and told to fight another group of people because they oppose our deity builds a religiously motivated military who is fighting for "their" god.  This puts military action into the elusive category religious fanaticism based on  superstition and mysticism, not logic. It is very easy to control a religious fanatic,  unskilled and uneducated preachers do it every sunday all across america.  3.  Applying the bible to a physical/mental problem grows a religious military that is easy to control and manipulate because free thought is eliminated and skepticism is taken out of the equation.  A religious person is controlled with religious teachings and instruction.  The military uses religion and religion uses the military. 

Back to my original link and question?  How effective is the reading of the bible when dealing with psychological trauma.  Is their any scientific and verifiable evidence that these soldiers should be treated in this way?  I personally tried to heal PTSD for 30 years with diligent bible reading, forgiveness, faithful church attendance and the application of the "biblical" self help writers.  I got no relief from a prayer meeting, a self-help book or from "giving the problem to god".  The problems associated with PTSD did not go away and I suffered 30 years.  When I gave away every christian self-help book and went to a therapist and a psychiatrist I began to heal.  I truly weep for our soldiers who are told to go home and read their bibles. We wonder why so many of them blow their brains out.
It takes money, time and resources and acknowledgement of the problem of PTSD, but the military wants to sweep it under the rug and apply elusive spirituality to the problem with a $5.00  bible fix.  Our soldiers deserve better. 

Is it true?

"He said to them, "Because of your unbelief. For most certainly I tell you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will tell this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you."

Author: Matthew 17 Verses #: 20

This is Jesus saying that problems do not go away because of unbelief.  All that is necessary for life and health and wealth is belief.  Is that statement true?  Was it true at the time?  Is it true now?  This is a man claiming to be god and know god stating that belief in god fixes everything.  What about peak oil?  What about climate change?  What about destruction of the planet with pollution?  What about death and destruction by war?  What about illness?  What about poverty?  What about food shortages?
Jesus is saying problems can "magically" disappear with belief.  Is this a true statement?  Has anyone had a problem disappear by apply an ascent of faith to the problem?  NO.  Logic and reason and knowledge and science and math lead to problem resolution not mysticism.  For  2,000 years women and children died from a lack of science about obstetrics.  When someone wants a safe delivery they go to a doctor that is trained to deliver babies and protect the life of the mother and the infant.  There is no evidence that a greater "belief" in god solved any health or public crisis in the last 2,000 years of mankind applying christianity to culture.  If  struggling to reach a state of "greater belief" leaves you exhausted and unsure that you arrived anywhere, feeling guilt for the problem that does not go away and believing the problem is the fault of  "unbelief" or lack of "faith" is exactly the place where religion wants you and needs you to be.....guilty, and feeling inadequate and insecure and in need of more religion and more faith.  The solution to the problem is scientific, political, economic or cultural, not a lack of belief in an unseen and absent, silent, and mystical deity.  Ask yourself if it is true that nothing is impossible?  Growing old?  Getting sick?  Having an accident?  It is not true and never was true.  If everyone believes a is still a lie.  If no one believes the is still the truth.

Monday, September 13, 2010

The dome on the rock owned by 3 competing gods

The above link to an article about the Dome of the Rock highlights the problem of 3 religions (Islam, Judaism and Christianity) and their deities claiming rights the a piece of land in modern day Israel.

In times past a prophet could claim to hear from god and round up a local following that would eventually find the desire to create a new religion and worship the prophet and his words and life, but the world would go on and do it's best to assimilate and accomodate the new religion and the believers.  Time would pass and a new prophet and a new religion would seek believers in honor of the new deity.  The problem for the world at this juncture is that this has happened three times in one place in history and now "Houston we have a problem".  Who has rightful claim to the land on which the Dome of the Rock sits?  The world sits and watches as we now have  3 different deities competing for the rights to a piece of ground.  First, the jews built a temple where animal sacrifice and worship to Yahweh centered their culture for centuries.  Then came Jeshua, an iteranite jewish prophet who claimed Yahweh for his own and taught new teachings and a new religion.  Four hundred years after his death a chapel was built on the destroyed temple mound to honor this Jesus.  Two hundred years later, muslim conquerors leveled that shrine and built the dome on the rock mosque.  It is said to be the place where Mohammed, their prophet was welcomed into paradise by his god Allah.  Fast forward 1400 years and you have passionate followers of these gods claiming ownership of the holy ground.  Passionate sermons and ministries are founded to push for the rebuilding of the temple so Jesus can come back to earth.  The jewish Israeli's who have dispossed the palestinians of their homes, land, water and freedom in order to occupy the country given to them after World War II believe that nothing less than a pure jewish state is their right, given to them by their god, and the muslims revere the dome of the rock as one of their most holy sites.  What is the solution to this collusion of deities?  How many gods can one piece of land accomodate?

The fundamentalists of all three of these religions have no appetite for compromise and no one is backing down from loyalty to their ancient prophets and stone age gods and their "supposed" but unproven miracles.  A substantial  lack of  proof for these "divine revelations" seems to hold no bearing for a modern man committed to his ancient gods.  In a shrinking world possessed of atomic bombs it does not appear that any of these three gods is capable of stopping the other god of destructive  genocide and domination by right of the "largest bombs" and "largest military" and most passionate believers willing to die for their deity.  Why modern man clings to these ancient gods who did not advance the cause of mankind by simply explaining the "germ theory" of disease when they walked on the earth speaks of their total lack of knowledge of knowledge.  The deities guiding them were content to let mankind suffer in ignorance for centuries.  The 1800's began to bring about advances in science in spite of every attempt by religion to stop the progress of science.   These deities never felt the need to speak of the human rights of slaves or women and both suffered for 2,000 years after the death of jesus.  What good is a deity that encourages the death of any person who does not "believe" and condemns creation to an eternal place of punishment for skepticism and honest doubt?   Without science mankind would be back in his illiterate stone age, but with these ancient religions mankind may end his planet all together with weapons of mass destruction.  I vote we give up the confused and unenlightened deities and follow reason and logic and justice and disarm and call it a new day without stone age illiterate prophets who claim to speak for their god to be silenced in our minds and in our hearts.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The fall of woman

Genesis describes a "paradise" that was created by god.  First for Adam (the man he created from dirt) and then for his "helpmeet" Eve (who was created from one of Adam's ribs).  They did not wear clothing and they had everything that they needed and walked with god daily.  God put a tree of fruit in the middle of the garden that was "forbidden" for Adam and Eve to eat for the fruit possessed a power that would allow them to know "good and evil".  One day, Satan, in the form of a serpent tempted Eve to eat the fruit "so she would be like god" and then she gave the fruit to Adam to eat. Once they ate the fruit they realized that they were naked and they hid from god in shame.  God found them and killed an animal and made clothes for them and kicked them out of the garden after he cursed them by making them work for their food. He cursed Eve by making childbirth painful.  The other part of the curse was for Eve to "desire" Adam, but for Adam to rule over Eve.  The fall of Adam and Eve made Eve a "lesser" human to be dominated and subjugated.  The "fall of man" gave Adam dominance over Eve even though she would "desire" to be equal and for the relationship to once again be one of love and companionship.

The fall of mankind sets up a culture of "patriarchy" where man is dominate as the family and tribal authority.  Any woman who has ever gardened knows that she is subjected to toil and sweat to make food come out of the ground, and Adam's "curse" is her curse.  The lost paradise is forever Eve's fault and she is thereafter judged to be a weaker and less trustworthy creature.  Sex is changed to one of "desire" that is not met as she is seen as one who exists to bring forth children in pain.  Love and tenderness and equality is now out of the equation as angry domination on the part of Adam takes over.  This story unfairly blames Eve, and thereafter all women for the pain in childbirth and the inequality in male/female relationships.  The fall of mankind sets up a pattern of patriarchy that has been followed for 4,000 years.  The western cultures have evolved into more or less secular humanistic cultures where reason and logic can sometimes ascend above ancient tribal folklore myths, but the muslims are still deeply entrenched in the myth with cultures that are a mirror the effects of the curse.  For christians to know what life was like 4.000 years ago for women and children, they need to look no further than taliban ruled villages in Afghanistan. 

I discuss the "fall of womankind" in order to point out that without the myth we do not need a "savior".  If Eve's failure to obey a command by her creator never happened, we have nothing to be saved "from".
It is all just "make believe" told by ancient sheepherders to give them authority  in their affairs and help them understand their plight and shape their tribes as they see fit.  Once the mind rejects the story, one rejects the need for a god as a "savior", for one no longer needs to be saved.
Once the myth of the fall of womankind is rejected, men and women are free to create a society where women are equal and have a voice in the affairs of the culture.  Christians everywhere would wish that the muslims would throw off the myth of male dominance that causes so much female suffering as a result of their belief in the fall of mankind.   Christians are blinded by "faith" in the bible and unable to  see the same mirror image in their own beliefs and their own culture.  It is only fair that if we expect the muslims to discard the myth of the fall of mankinnd that christians would too.  Celebrate logic and reason today and envision a future where we do not teach our children 4,000 year old stories of how the world began and how mankind came about when science tells us differently. Encourage a culture of justice based on reason and logic and celebrate equality today!  It does not make sense to teach a creation story written by men who had no knowledge of the earth, the solar system or the universe, but created a myth that served their purposes and filled their "knowledge" void.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Jesus and the Pentagon

"You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you aren't troubled, for all this must happen, but the end is not yet."

Author: Matthew 24 Verses #: 6

Jesus tells his listeners to not be concerned about wars or even rumors of wars.  He boldly claims that war is necessary for the end of time to come.  Millions of christian americans wake up everyday and hope that they will be raptured, the world will be destroyed by war and Jesus will come back and set up a theocratic world-wide government that will last for 1,000 years while satan is subdued.  At the end of the 1,000 year millenium, the angels will fight it out, at which time god and his armies of angels will win and eternity will be established.  For a believing nation, that clings to the "supposed" words of a palestinian prophet from 2,000 years ago, possession of an earth destroying military empire is strangely comforting.  We have it within out power to fulfill this prophecy  and no one seems troubled.  The peace movement is "dead" or at least nearly silenced as unpatriotic and unbiblical.  God has always approved the killing of tribes outside of the hebrews and christians.  "Love your enemies" does not apply to Iraqi's, Afghani's or Iranians.  It is nearly impossible to convince an american christian to oppose the wars of the past decade and the next decade.  At the very least they consider it a hopeless endeavor to oppose war, and in a larger view, it is not in their best "eternal" interests to do so.
Consequently, the earth is now poised with muslims who are taught that Islam must dominate the planet and the christians who believe that war in the middle east is necessary to usher the "end times".  The children on both sides will suffer a great deal in the next century because of these ancient prophets and their books.  Maybe humans should at least be humane and not create offspring who are destined by the prophets to kill and be killed on behalf of their commands.  Just because a prophet declared divine revelation doesn't mean that he heard from god or was god.   Panda's have stopped breeding in the face of ecosystem stress, should humans do any less when we are poised to destroy the planet?