Buggering off – two week’s holiday!

A reminder (basically to myself, the sole reader of my blog) that I’m on two weeks’ leave from work so I can finish recording my vocals for my band‘s album.

What does this mean for my loyal readership? Sporadic blogging – after all, I have some lyrics to write and I expect to be way too tired from singing all day for any kind of daily self-indulgent passive-aggressive Jeebus-denying.

See you soon, me!

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Friday Frivolity (& an aside): Jesus in the house of Terry & Jed

click to embiggen!

When I scribbled this I was still something of a deist. Neale Donald Walsch’s Conversations With God series of books was greatly influential and elicited in me some quite profound revelations about my existence (one particular dream, where I was a ghost who not even my dog could see – contrary to all popular mythology on that subject – had me waking up sobbing uncontrollably with the joyous relief of still being alive, which was the beginning of the most serene & beautiful day of my entire life). I would sit there reading them, utterly absorbed & compelled and nodding my head quite a bit, saying “oh hell yes, that’s exactly what I thought!”

Ironically though (inevitably, in hindsight), the CWG series set me coasting very steadily toward atheism. One of the major points of Walsch’s conversations with his god were that all religions were human creations concentrated on control & retention of membership; hierarchical political organisations in all but name but based on infinitely higher ideals than conventional political parties (and thus able to wield much, much more power & influence – some still do, I’m looking at you, Pope Ratzinger, US fundie retards, Iranian ayatollahs, Saudi Thought Police et al.). Because they’re as completely artificial and arbitrary (and corrupt) as any party or football team or fast-food franchise, no human owes any allegiance to them. The responsibility of each & every human being is to live the most honest life they can and find their unique truth; the one thing or set of things that makes them happy. A pretty simple & obvious philosophy, one might think, but one that’s been coopted & distorted by religions for millennia to the point where joy & happiness in this life is unthinkable for most people in the world. Why? Because they expect to achieve (and have been promised since infancy) perfection in the next world, people most of the time don’t strive for joy in this one.

Reading the CWG series was a defining moment in my spiritual development. It crystallised my beliefs; more importantly it crystallised for me my opinions on organised religions and what political, human-manufactured control systems they are (regardless of whether they were ever intended to be). Since that moment in my mid-teens, literally half a life away, when I’d decided Christians were basically making shit up, I’d long been cynical about religion but still held some kind of belief that something was somewhere, observing if not actually doing anything.

Before I read CWG I met (& dated) a few hippies, wiccans and assorted New-Agers who were into crystals, spirit guides, Magick, paganism, past-life regression, sweat-lodges, peyote and other assorted bollocks. Some had watercolour pictures of their alleged “spirit guides” framed on their walls, usually taking the form of a kindly-looking man or woman dressed in pseudo Middle Earth garb, on a nice colourful aural background. Their bookshelves were full of crystals and books on the various trendy spiritualities of the mid-late 1990s; some called themselves “seers” and some even practiced reiki (occasionally uninvited, which made me very uncomfortable). I thought they were all clear-headed and enlightened at the time. Through hindsight, however, I saw that they were lost, confused and sexually promiscuous people, myself included, clearly seeking some kind of clarity, path, answers or revelations. Much I wanted to be a part of their world, their pseudo-religions & superstitions didn’t really catch on with me and I realised later that I had just been feigning interest, even to the point of wearing a kaftan at some point and allowing some old charlatan to dangle his crystal pendulum over me as I lay down. He proclaimed, as a result of the crystal swinging rather rapidly, that I was “very psychic”; I could clearly see his thumb and index finger moving the leather strap. At that point it all just seemed completely unnecessary & a bunch of wishful thinking.

So I read CWG and I realised I was a deist. After the memory of the books had faded somewhat I simply lived as I chose and tried to make myself happy. But an interesting thing happened a couple of years ago: I read DawkinsThe God Delusion. A Christmas gift from my mother, it had been on my wish-list ever since I saw Dawkins’ now-legendary discussion of it at the Randolph-Macon Women’s college on youtube. This book made me re-evaluate whatever I considered my spiritual side. Through close introspection (a favourite hobby) I realised that my cynicism regarding religion was well-placed and that I’d basically been living as an atheist for the past decade or so. It’s not that Dawkins‘ words told me what to think or what I was (which would defeat the entire purpose of atheism, reason and freethinking in general); they made me think. They allowed me to crystallise what my beliefs and opinions were on the subject of religion and made me realise what a true danger blind faith can be to reason and rationality and science (as well as providing some great insights on how religion could be spread and how things such as morality may well have evolved as we did). From childhood I’d loved science & nature, from my biology teacher father’s shelves full of natural history & palaeontology volumes & subscriptions to New Scientist & Australian Geographic, to the David Attenborough (long may he reign) documentaries we’d sit as a family and be enthralled by, to Carl Sagan’s Cosmos series and my eventual deep love for the science fiction of people like Asimov (again, dad’s bookshelf – now mine and I wonder if he’s noticed that he’s missing the entire Foundation series), Clarke, Frank Herbert, William Gibson, Gene Roddenberry and Iain M Banks. Dawkins‘ arguments appealed to nerdy side of me as well as the part of me that now, almost instinctively, mistrusted religion and an atheist was born! Well, not so much born – an atheist was made to realise he’d actually been one for years and didn’t know πŸ™‚

I didn’t experience a profoundly upsetting & negative experience at the hands of religion or its practitioners as, so many unfortunately have; I arrived at atheism in such a quiet, understated way that I didn’t realise I was there until a well-spoken professor advised me to simply stop & observe my surroundings. As I think I was already pretty reasonable, the rest just fell into place. “Oh, right … I suppose I’m an atheist then – all the relevant boxes are ticked. OK then. Good. Now what? Oh right – get on with my life!”

Thanks, Prof Dawkins. I think I’ll go and read it again now. Once I finish Sagan’s The Demon-Haunted World …

Cancer – now a fungus!

At a forum I’m a member of, someone posted a link to this story about a doctor who claims that (a) he’s discovered cancer is caused by the candida fungus and (b) that he can cure it with – get this – fucking BAKING SODA. Naturally (get your yawn ready) he’s been expelled! by Big Medicine because it’s all just a conspiracy to support profit-making medical treatments.

Here’s the orginal post:

I thought this was a joke–especially after 10 minutes of Monty Python-esque rambling about white lumps–but after reading the article, I can’t help but wonder: “what if?”

Basically he’s arguing that cancer is a fungus (or rather is caused by a fungus), and he has cured it with simple pH-raising baking soda injections, and that cancer is a huge money-maker for the disease-care industry, and doctors and drug companies don’t want to mess with the status quo.

It’s actually kind of scary. But wouldn’t we always want to believe that the simple truth is being suppressed by rich doctors and drug companies? Nevertheless, I would kind of hope it isn’t true, so I don’t feel as helpless for not doing anything about it, or maybe so I can keep giving money to cancer “research.”

Has anyone heard anything along these lines? has it been debunked? just another conspiracy theory?

Here’s my response:

Yeah well, I heard the whole HIV/AIDS thing is a scam by latex manufacturers to make people buy lots & lots of condoms. Oh, and there are pyramids in freaking Bosnia. And the world is 6000 years old! Don’t believe the Big Science Conspiracy!!one!1eleventy!!1

This chap is claiming that the fungus allegedly responsible for cancer, Candida, is also responsible for asthma, food allergies, depression, weight gain, migraines, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and vaginitis. Well, he’s got that last one right – vaginitis is a thrush infection most commonly cause by the candida fungus. So why doesn’t it cause vagina cancer?

Unfortunately, Dr. Simoncini is yet another brilliant doctor who has been ousted from the medical community due to his revolutionary simple ideas of how to cure profit-making diseases.

A. the reasons people get “ousted” from medicine are usually along the same reasons people get “expelled” from the scientific community: pseudo-science; extraordinary claims with no evidence; “studies” which are biased and uncontrolled; improper methodology; beginning with assumptions and working backwards to justify them; mistakenly conflating coincidences for cause & effect. Until this “cancer = fungus” connection can be reliably proven, repeatedly with unbiased double-blind testing, this doctor and his alleged baking soda cure should be regarded with the utmost skepticism.

If his simple treatment really cured cancer I would expect any doctor worth the term (and especially oncologists) to be jumping on it and using it to treat all their cancer patients, not vehemently denying it to funnel profits into Big Medicine. I know people who have cancer and some who are, for now, in remission. I worked for a short time at a lab in a dedicated cancer treatment hospital in Melbourne. I know that if something came along that could make cancer go away without the need for painful, debilitating chemo & radiation, their doctors would be on it in a second, “profits” be damned. People become plastic surgeons for money; people become oncologists to treat people with cancer. I cannot imagine any self-respecting paediatric oncologist deliberately overlooking an effective cancer treatment while simultaneously looking an 8-year old brain cancer sufferer (and his parents) in the eye and telling them there’s no more than can be done and they’d better just make little Timmy comfortable.

B. the only people “profiting” from cancer are cranks who prey on credulous, desperate people who are running out of options. Having a cousin, aunt and close friend who all recently survived three different forms cancer and the associated chemo & radiation treatments, I get really, really pissed off by this kind of bullshit.

C. Mercola.com bills itself as “The World’s Most Popular Natural Health Newsletter”. Now, effective as many natural remedies can be, a lot of people who use them unfortunately think that any modern medical treatments are not to be trusted, because they’re “unnatural” and because people make money from them. My naturopath wife (who’s about to start studying medicine – i.e. proper doctorism) encounters this anti-modern point of view all the time and has a lot of trouble convincing people that natural medicine has its limits and that people should be able to recognise them and use a combination of modern and natural treatments – if & where appropriate. More than once, being aware of naturopathy’s limitations, she’s referred a client to a doctor for a more modern & comprehensive treatment, only to be met with fierce, almost dogmatic resistance to the thought.

Basically, every single “practitioner” that’s appeared in my lifetime who has claimed to be able to cure cancer, or proclaimed cancer is caused by an easily-cured and until-now undiagnosed simple disorder or infection (for which he happens to have discovered a cure) has been shown to be lying through his ****ing teeth. Inevitably, they pop up for a while, charge extortionate amounts of money for their “breakthrough”, get their fifteen minutes and then slither back under the rug, never to be seen again. There is no reason to treat it as such until sufficient evidence is furnished. Frankly, I don’t see it happening.

——-

As you can see, that really got my back up. The original poster asks “It’s actually kind of scary. But wouldn’t we always want to believe that the simple truth is being suppressed by rich doctors and drug companies?” Why the fuck would anyone want to believe that? Is such an elaborate conspiracy, necessarily requiring thousands upon thousands of participants in pretty much every nation on Earth, even possible to conceive? How could such a large group of doctors & oncologists be content to sit by and watch people die in their thousands & make lots of money, rather than treat them with whatever is proven to be effective? There are ways to make money that are a lot easier, require far fewer years of hard study and less morally repugnant than working yourself into a coma to become an oncologist and then just sitting back rolling in cash while your patients fucking DIE because you’d rather have an Aston Martin than treat a kid with bone cancer with whatever treatment works.

I’ve read the article and I urge you to do so as well. It simply reeks of unfounded assertions, paranoia, conspiracy theory and special pleading.

Completely regardless of the truth or not of both the fungus claim and baking soda cure, the paranoid, anti-modern tone of the article is, unfortunately, typical of many “alternative” health articles and, naturally, assumes that Dr Simoncini is right straight from the start and Big Med is just picking in him because he’s right and they’re afraid they might lose some profit, which instantly triggers my bullshit detector. That is not science and it is not medicine, it is faith & an over-developed victim complex. Just because Dr Baking Soda is being “persecuted”, it doesn’t mean he’s bloody Galileo. If people like Dr B.S. want a seat at the big table, let them satisfy the requirements every other treatment has had to satisfy in the history of medical science, from the humble aspirin to the mind-blowing world of neurosurgery.

..

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Slowing down – going on two weeks’ holiday to Rock Camp!

Righto. I know it’s been slow lately, but I’ve had other things on my mind besides the retardulence of the credulient.

My band is heading into the studio on Monday August 11 to finish our debut album and I’m taking two glorious weeks off work to lay down the rest of my vocals. I have seven entire songs to record (one of which isn’t completely written) and a smidge over two weeks to get it done (we also need to record one more entire song, get the string quartet & horn section in there and complete the programming of the electronic stuff). I’m greatly looking forward to getting in there and singing myself into a coma. Bring it on! Viva Rock Camp!

Curious? Here is what we’ve done so far.

Not curious? Go to church πŸ™‚

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Christians on youtube = good times!

Over recent months I’ve taken (for some reason) to commenting in youtube threads and getting myself into arguments. I present, for your entertainment, selected comment exchanges following this video about the origins of the character of Satan. It was an interesting video, if lacking a little depth, but the comments – as is often the case on youtube – were the best part.

fyuuryjury:
demons are attracted to rotting death, like their name in the bible say, beelzebub (or lord of the flies) that’s why there are so many haunting in places like cemeteries, they are a being without form only mind and power(also from the bible) they can create powerful illussion of sight, sound, feel, smell and taste such as ghost, troll, goblin ect.. its all just illussion of their dark, filthy, twisted and evil minds, that’s why there are no hard proof or evidence of them.

mandrellian:
You said “that’s why there are no hard proof or evidence of them”. So how do you KNOW they haunt cemeteries and create illusions and have dark twisted minds, or even exist at all? Without evidence or proof, you can’t know anything. All you can do is take someone’s word for it or believe a bunch of old fables & superstitions. Or make it up yourself.

Fyuuryjury seems to be confusing the bible with Hallowe’en.

Then came this inspired comment…

blessedjohn:
Rev 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet [are], and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

… which received this response from me:
Thanks for your input there blessedjohn. Feel free to get back to us when you have a thought of your own that doesn’t originate in someone else’s book.Anyone who still believes this Satan character (your basic boogeyman/scare-you-straight villain, cobbled together from various ancient mythologies – like most other characters in the Christian fiction) is real and wants to torment your soul needs to do some serious growing up. And if you also teach this shit to your kids as true, shame on you.

…which in turn inspired this work of typically well-proofread genius and subsequent free exchange of ideas and respectful discourse (why do the most angry ones never check what they write?):

02joseph02:
fuck you ASS HOLe if u dont bvelive in god then go fuck your self

I wiped my screen – having spat out my drink laughing my arse off at this concentration of pure, raging STIPUD, and replied…

mandrellian:
Another great piece of loving, compassionate Xtian input.Seriously, can you guys do anything besides (a) quote scripture or (b) hurl badly-typed abuse at people? One only DEMON-strates (ooh booga booga) your willing enslavement to mythology, the other only shows that you don’t, can’t or won’t proofread your comments before you post.But I believe I will go fuck myself, thank you. I haven’t spilled any daemon-seed today and I’m feeling a bit pent-up.

02joseph02:
if your an athist and if you dont belive in god the you should just kill your self beacuse if there is nothing out there then you wont have to wory i mean if you die you wouldent regret killing your self youd be dead you wont feel anything so what if people belive in god at least it gives them hope that there is a god on like u fucking pesemist

mandrellian:
I was a lot more pessimistic when I was a Xtian – and I was a lot more fucking polite to people who weren’t Xtian!The fact that I don’t count on an afterlife means that I make _this_ life count. Life’s too short go around telling people I don’t know to fucking commit suicide because we believe different things. Although I’m tempted to, because if you survive to breed you’re no doubt going to pass your halfwitted, illiterate, hate-filled fundamentalist bigotry on to your kids.

02joseph02 seemingly thought I was no longer worth his precious time – after all, there may be heathens down at the mega-mall to convert! Entertaining though that was, I’m actually glad it was brief.

Next came this chap…

acenaspheru:
hate goes both ways. you complaining about people bashing you is hypocritical when you bash others. the fact remains that no one alive can know for sure who is right or wrong and to assume that you do is arrogant and just as half witted as those who you say are halfwits. believing or not believing in something has nothing to do with intelegance.

mandrellian:
Belief has *everything* to do with intelligence (as does spelling and grammar). A belief is a choice we make through our experience of the world and our understanding of it. The better your understanding, the more informed your beliefs will be. If you choose to believe superstition and teach it as truth without thinking, your understanding of the world is shallow and inadequate.Read my last paragraph again. I bash *ideas*, not people. A stupid idea should be called stupid, simple as that.

acenaspheru:
okay. πŸ™‚ try science and history. The account where the sun stood still, was not just in the bible but is also reported by cultures around the world, proving that it actually happened. The Native Americans have a story about a time when the sun didn’t rise.

There is evidence of a large disasterous flood. Science has proven how the ten plagues came about. And also how the reed sea was parted. *not red sea as was incorrectly translated* There are countless things you can look up that happened.

mandrellian:
The Native Americans also have a story about the Thunderbird. Believe that too? The Aborigines have one about the Rainbow Serpent carving out riverbeds. The Greeks had a flying horse too! What other mythologies are you gonna cherry-pick to confirm your own?

I always chuckle when theists use the word “science” when they think it confirms their fables, but will dismiss it out of hand when it tells of evolution or the 4 billion year old Earth or anything else that contradicts their dogma.

That was actually the end of the public version of our exchange. Acenaspheru contacted me personally later to send me this message (comment length limit restricted the exchange, so I have to give the guy respect for following up his arguments). I’d paste the whole exchange but it was a private conversation and, to be honest, it was just a longer version of the exchange in the comments and wouldn’t bring anything new – though I did some research and found out exactly what disastrous consequences would eventuate if the Earth suddenly stopped rotating (which would produce the illusion of the sun standing still):

“Get this: our planet rotates at about 1100 miles (1770 km) per hour. If it were to stop suddenly, because of inertia our atmosphere would still be spinning at that speed! Imagine a global windstorm of over Mach 1.5 – it would scrub the Earth clean! Every ounce of topsoil, every plant, every animal and anything not anchored to the bedrock would be swept up into the atmosphere, turning into a massive cloud of deadly airborne debris. We’re talking a disaster a billion times worse than that tornado in The Wizard Of Oz.

That’s not even considering the gigantic quantities of water that will now be sloshing around as massive, continent-sized tsunamis, washing away what ever the wind doesn’t blow away. Think about how hard it is to drive or sit in a moving car and try to keep a bucket from spilling (or even just half a cup of water) and think about what happens when you stop suddenly. Multiply it by several trillion.”

In short: it would be very, very, very BAD.

After a little break, the thread got interesting again!

conradpilapil:
They found skeletons.. wow..

Well. One can’t let crap like that slide, can one?

mandrellian:
Is that what constitutes a rebuttal to two centuries of paleontology, geology and of scientific progress in general?

Seriously, if all you’re going to do is act like a sarcastic teenager, this thread’s better off without you.

Conrad later contacted me privately as well, but all he could muster was a sentence and a half of incoherent fundie-babble which, I now regret, I marked as spam, deleted, at which point I blocked him. I don’t use youtube messaging at all unless someone messages me first, but I still don’t want it filled with crap. At least acenaspheru had some idea of how to communicate with other humans; this guy could barely tell me what he believed, let alone why what I believed was bollocks.

This commenter, however, was pure gold! He’s still going in that thread too, ever-ready to fight the good fight with his Flaming Sword of Flaming (+50 ignorance but easily deflected if opponent has the intelligence of a cave troll or higher).

pzloz:
You consider Christianity to be a fable. Is it me or in the last 20 years have people decided that mocking religion is the hip and cool thing to do. I understand evolution, and the age of the planet, and so on. It must be very difficult to mock something you never understood in the beginning. I think atheists are the biggest assholes on the planet, the biggest egos, arrogant, condescending and such. Based on what I read from you. You sound like an asshole set forth I will refer to you as one.

Straight off he drops the a-bomb! Bam! I had up to that point tried and be, if not flat-out nice, at least more civil than people had been with me.

mandrellian:
LOL pzloz. Nice flaming, you keyboard warrior. This isn’t some fad. People have been denying religion since before yours was even founded. All myth treated as fact should be mocked, as should people who think insults qualify as some sort of superior argument.

FYI I was raised Christian. I read the bible. I understand it very well – that’s the precise reason I’m an atheist. Perhaps if you actually understood your own mythology … well, clearly that’s too much to expect. Flame on, third-grader.

pzloz:
Oh okay mandrellian. Myths? Think what you want. Perhaps you don’t understand the bible that well to be an atheist. Atheists consider themselves intellectually superior to everyone who has faith. Being atheists does not constitute for squat. It is just a fad everybody thinks is cool because you find holes in religion. Holes are everywhere. There are people who have faith and understand science and the world. I always knew there are weak people in the world and atheists prove that to me always.

mandrellian:
That you think atheism is some fad speaks more to your *own* massive ignorance of what’s right in front of you. We don’t think we’re superior – we just have better standards of evidence and a more sensitive lie detector.

Scream all you want, you little emo for Jesus – we’re not going anywhere, unlike every “god” that’s ever “existed”. Think about every extinct religion (mythology) and about all the current ones you don’t believe in – then you’ll get why atheists don’t believe in any of it.

pzloz:
Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are all united faiths in the same God. We are together in that belief. They just don’t hold up Christ the way we do. Mythology is like referenced earlier to. Hydras, Giant World Trees, a giant wolf, centaurs, etc. Standards of evidence??? What the fuck is that??? Oh I forgot, atheists have it all figured, right? They’re pseudo-scientists and actual scientiests. I have more respect them as intellectually enlightened people, then disrespecting atheists like you.

mandrellian:
I KNOW I don’t have it all figured out – but I’m okay with that. Sure as hell beats crediting a god every time I don’t have an answer.

Hydras, world trees – how the hell are they any less believable than walking on water, the virgin conception, the loaves and fishes, the resurrection, the water to wine, Lazarus etc? Oh, I know: because they’re all myths and your stories are The Truth. Get yourself some perspective, keyboard warrior.

Heard nothing back from wee prince valiant on that score – I guess he’s just “pulled a fundie” and decided I’m bound for hell, so why waste with me anymore. As he proves in a later exchange with “pressgangers“, he seems quite happy to gloat over someone he thinks is hellbound.

There was another quick exchange after that, which was great fun.

barallor:
Very interesting and yes satan existsfor example look at israel the jews were the poeple that god chose and so satan tries to destroy them in every possible way more than any other population in the world.

02joseph02:
that is so tru i never realy thought of it that way i mean the greeks the percians the egyptianss the russians the nazis the muslims(not all muslims) the list gose on

mandrellian:
Hilarious, barallor. Since the time of Jesus, the Christians have done more to attempt extermination of Jews than any goat-legged boogeyman.

acenaspheru:
this depiction of satan actually originates in donte’s inferno and other popular fictional stories. in most of the bible he’s described looking more human. however you are partly correct. it’s not just christans though, it’s islamics too.

while i do believe that satan exists, i do not believe he can be blamed for all the evil and hatred in the world. as humans we want a scape goat, to pass blame to someone else for our deeds. satan is that scape goat. yes he can be blamed for a lot of things, but i don’t believe things like wars and tragedies like 911 were due to him. there are very evil people in the world.

mandrellian:
If Satan isn’t responsible for all the evil in the world he may as well not exist at all. If he’s not behind 9/11 or the Holocaust, because humans are perfectly capable of evil acts on their own, what’s the point of his existence? To just piss God off? He sounds less evil than the Hamburglar.

If Satan exists at all it’s because God allows him to. If that’s the case, who’s the more evil? The prince of darkness? Or the guy with the power to defeat him but chooses not to?

Oddly enough, noone wanted to have a go at that one – well, only in a textbook passive aggressive way by clicking “thumbs down” on my comment. Well, baw! I wanted a goddam answer to that one too! Why does God allow Satan to exist and plague mankind? God created everything: heaven, hell, Satan, angels – can’t he just undo his mistakes rather than let humanity suffer for thousands of years? For that matter, why does Ronald McDonald continue to tolerate Hamburglar’s constant attempts to make off with his product? Ron’s the boss for god’s sake – it’s called McDonaldland isn’t it?

Finally, one last oddity…

peejaydub:
well mandrellian, if u are a athist then why did u bother to look up this video? then on top of that u tried to change what people should think aobut their own religion, something tells me that the devil speaks through people like u. but u people are to blind sited to see what is truely going on.

i will pray for you

Joy! My favourite kind of comment from a religionist – PITY! Sweet, glorious pity πŸ˜€

mandrellian:
Please don’t pray for me. I’ll be fine. As a wise man once said: “two hands put to work will accomplish more than a thousand clasped in prayer.”

I looked up this video to discover the origins of the MYTH of Satan because I am interested in what primitive people believed (and what some modern people still believe) and why. Is it necessary to believe in fictional characters in order to find them interesting? Only, it seems, if you’re religious …

No response – perhaps he’s still busy praying…

So, there you have it. A weekend video search for interesting documentaries (I *love* this century: sick days/weekend TV on rainy days can suck balls, but if you have broadband you have doco heaven – the time I’ve killed watching docs on Romans, Mongols, Nazis, Commies and other failed empires has been well spent and very entertaining), a comment from a religionist I can’t resist responding to and bam! A very entertaining exchange with a variety of theists. Some respectful, some downright rude, some ignorant, some pitiful & retarded. I don’t get angry with the more idiotic ones; they just baffle me. Are their identities so wrapped up in their religion – and their religion in turn so fragile that it can’t withstand any kind of questioning – that any critique of that religion is automatically assumed to be a personal attack? It would appear so, considering the personal attacks I copped in return from a couple of those goons. “Go fuck yourself”, “kill yourself”, “your [sic] an asshole”? I mean, come on. Defend your faith & your beliefs because that’s what’s under attack, not you! I don’t know you people from a bar of yellow soap, but if you make it personal, in my eyes you’ve already lost. Grow the fuck up! Hell, if their identity & self-worth are that brittle – being propped up by an equally brittle belief system – maybe I should pray for pity them…

But hey, if you think some of that’s bad – check out Pat Condell’s comment threads πŸ˜€ Fark!! That guy can attract malice like no other – I imagine it’s the kind of bloodshot-eyed, Rage-virus-from-28 Days Later kind of hatred PZ Myers would attract if he had a youtube account πŸ™‚

Happy Tuesday everyone!