Now, Fundies lurk most articles like this – they’re part of the larger ‘army of god’ that takes on the likes of me when we side with common sense, reason, and sanity – and the two I’m quoting below are no exception.
I don’t take these people on in a ‘comments’ section – I figure that if I’ve stated my position, that’s enough – and a full-on discussion of such things is well beyond the purview and nature (indeed; it involves hijacking a person’s article or thread) of simple commentary.
Plus, when you take these people on, one or two others seem to come out of the woodwork like magic; they seem to just know when it’s time to begin a shit-slinging contest.
Now, understand – I’m of the belief that nobody knows what happens when we die – and anyone who claims to have that knowledge is behaving with such arrogant hubris as to be beyond both help and description. While humility is the best course by which to approach these topics, Fundies aren’t wired that way.
My Dad used to say (in reference to religious proselytizing), “There’s nothing more obnoxious than a reformed drunk.” Fundies are good at that – in their view, the only thing better than having discovered ‘god’ is to force the whole world to discover him, too. In this case, there was some discussion about the absolute statements in their Bible about homosexuality – and I pointed out that there really wasn’t much to learn at all about life or the cosmos from a bunch of Bronze Age goat-herders whose campfire-legends and variant proscriptions managed to survive and wind up codified into a book.
One of them – a fellow named Mark – came back with this: “…I am compelled to defend God's word. It has been a source of comfort and solace to me on many an occasion, and has been proven accurate from translation to translation to translation. I trust it with my eternity. Especially the New Testament parts where several simple fisherman, empowered with a belief in a risen and living savior changed world history. These fisherman (sic) were ignorant of higher education and critical thinking. Yet they did spread the gospel. I thank God for them!”
Fuck me. Running.
Mark, first off, if your Bible really is ‘god’s word’, then it doesn’t need defending. It would be universally compelling and universally understood. There wouldn’t be any need to ‘spread the gospel’; people would flock to it naturally.
They don’t. Reason? Because it’s a collection of half-baked tales involving people who thought the earth was flat, that slavery was a good idea, and that it’s entirely logical to think that the sun can stand still in the sky for half a day (Joshua 10; 12-13). In fact, nearly 15% of the world's population doesn't believe in a 'divine being' at all.
(Let’s not even think about what happens to the laws of physics to make this happen. In fact, let’s not think about it at all – because if you do, for about five seconds, you’d have to throw out anything you believe about those laws, and accept what an old preacher once told me – “god can do anything he wants.” If you go there, then you’re going to have to throw out the whole book – but hey. Never mind.)
“Accurate from translation to translation?” I really don’t know what he meant by that, and I really wasn’t going to try. I could have brought up the Sinai Codex (the earliest known bible, written between 325-360C.E. - and the 42 separate omissions or variances between it and the King James bible – including two books which aren’t present today).
Another one – a young lady named Kelline – said, “I always wonder why people hate something that is centered in love, forgiveness, grace, mercy, and the giving of life. Let's just say God is real. He says, "I'm here, I created you, and you are extremely loved and important to me and the world. I want you to live on after your body gives out. I offer you the promise of peace and love without anguish or pain. All you have to do is take a tiny leap of faith and say, I believe. I require nothing else, believe and I'll do the work that needs to be done to change you from the inside out." Now, my question is, why is that such a horrible thing that the world should be better off without?”
Kelline, first off, I don’t ‘hate’ your bible. I’m simply the guy who’s pointed out that it’s just a book; nothing more. If you want to believe that a Kosher zombie came to earth, died, got himself brought back to life, and because you communicated telepathically with him and made him your Master, then he’ll magically remove a force from your body created when a talking serpent coerced a woman into eating fruit from a magic tree – hey; go ahead on. Makes perfect sense to me. People believe all sorts of strange things, and while this probably ranks up there with the strangest, you don’t seem to be telling people to sell everything and wait for the end to come like that Camping fellow did a year ago – (plus, you’re kinda cute, if your profile pic is real, and I give a lot of slack to cute gals. Just sayin’.)
If this resonates with you and you have faith in it, believe it or not, I understand faith. I really do. What I can’t abide is your attempt to sell it to me.
Why do I reject your belief? Because I don’t believe in Osiris, Ahura-Mazda, Amun-Ra, Serapis, Zeus, Jupiter, or any of the other gods of former civilizations, either. Neither do you, for that matter – which means that the only difference between you and I is that I’ve gone one ‘god’ further than you did.
And yes, by saying this, I’m also saying “You and Mark are both full of crap.” How do I know this?
Because there’s a fundamental difference between the both of you, and me – you see, I know I’m not telepathic. I know I can’t see the future. I know I can’t talk to dead Jewish Zombies. I gave up the whole concept of an Imaginary Friend over five decades ago.
Lastly, please just remember that religion is like a penis – you’re entitled to your quiet enjoyment of it; you can play with it in private all you want. But when you wave it in my face, tell me that it’s the ‘best, and insist that I spend time on my knees worshiping it – and, if I refuse, try to shove it down my throat –then we’re going to have words.
I might even bite the damn thing off. Then, where would you be?