Now, this is the way to scare the shit out of people and make them do what you say. Some of these would look right at home in John Carpenter’s “The Thing.”
Donald Trump before the makeover. Or maybe after, it’s hard to to tell.
THE DEVIL AND HIS SERVANTS: DEMONIC ILLUSTRATIONS FROM 18TH CENTURY OCCULT BOOK
With the warning “NOLI ME TANGERE” (“Do Not Touch”) on its cover, the compendium can be seen as a last attempt by those of faith to instil fear among the superstitious. After all, the Compendium Artis Magicae was produced during the decade of revolutions (American and French) and in the Age of Enlightenment—when reason, science and the power of the individual dominated, and the first stirrings of industry were about to change Europe and the world. The horrendous witch trials of the 16th and 17th centuries were long banished and the last execution in England for witchcraft took place in 1716 (1727 in Scotland, 1750 in Austria, 1782 in Switzerland), while the practise of witchcraft ceased to be a criminal offense across Europe during the century (England 1735)—all of which makes this Compendium Artis Magicae all the more bizarre.
I’ll bet many people today can look at such things and feel a stab of fear, because they’ve been programmed to think there’s an evil creature lurking in the shadows trying to lure them into its sinful clutches. (Side note: what’s with the gargantuan wangs on some of these demons…?)
The people running the so-called “Christian” business of Hobby Lobby not only want the legal right to impose their religious beliefs on their employees, but apparently they’ve also been trafficking in illegal religious artifacts from Iraq. Stuff to put in their own “Bible museum”, no less. It’s like they’re really crappy villains from some Indiana Jones movie.
Exclusive: Feds Investigate Hobby Lobby Boss for Illicit Artifacts
In 2011, a shipment of somewhere between 200 to 300 small clay tablets on their way to Oklahoma City from Israel was seized by U.S. Customs agents in Memphis. The tablets were inscribed in cuneiform—the script of ancient Assyria and Babylonia, present-day Iraq—and were thousands of years old. Their destination was the compound of the Hobby Lobby corporation, which became famous last year for winning a landmark Supreme Court case on religious freedom and government mandates. A senior law enforcement source with extensive knowledge of antiquities smuggling confirmed that these ancient artifacts had been purchased and were being imported by the deeply-religious owners of the crafting giant, the Green family of Oklahoma City. For the last four years, law enforcement sources tell The Daily Beast, the Greens have been under federal investigation for the illicit importation of cultural heritage from Iraq.
This is terrifically insane! And how did they (almost) pull it off? Easy: they lied.
One source familiar with the Hobby Lobby investigation told us that this is precisely what happened in this case: The tablets were described on their FedEx shipping label as samples of “hand-crafted clay tiles.” This description may have been technically accurate, but the monetary value assigned to them—around $300, we’re told—vastly underestimates their true worth, and, just as important, obscures their identification as the cultural heritage of Iraq.
Lawbreaking, bearing false witness, pride… So much for those Christian values. But really, can we expect much more from people who are so public about their religion? Seems like the louder you crow about it, the more you’ve got to hide.
Oh for fuck’s sake. Honestly, people, you need to get a grip on reality here. Sorry, but this stuff just drives me bonkers… Just because the clouds do something you’ve never seen before doesn’t mean it’s a sign from God or that the “end times” are near. Even if it was a sign, what is it trying to say? “Hey look, I’m a big round rainbowy cloud”? You’d think if God wanted to give us a sign, it would be something that left nothing to interpretation. (And please don’t say your faith tells you this is a holy event, because we both know that’s quite a stretch.)
Costa Rica Cloud Formation: Scientists Explain Cloud Formation As Christians Celebrate Sign From God
One woman who posted a photo of the mystery said it looked “like the end of times.” She said the “skies opened up as if it were the end of times — It was truly a beautiful glimpse of what our God has in store for us on the day he comes back.” Another Escazu resident, Jessie Montealegre, said she was also was amazed by the sky phenomenon. “It was breathtaking,” she said. “It’s like a sign of God.”
But wait! This looks very familiar… I think I’ve seen God’s handiwork like this before!
Anyway, leave it to the killjoy scientists to burst this heavenly bubble and ruin everything with their science and reason and stuff:
However, experts said the cloud has a less divine explanation — a rare phenomenon known as “cloud iridescence.” Eladio Solano, a meteorologist with Costa Rica’s National Meteorological Institute, said the colorful effect is caused by the sun’s light being refracted by water droplets and ice crystals in the cloud.
OK, all snarkiness aside…I get that religious people take comfort in things they believe to be signs from heaven. It probably feels really good to think you’ve made contact with something “out there.” But when you start seeing an all-powerful Supreme Being in mundane things like clouds, toast, or even brain scans, maybe that is the sign you should pay attention to — it’s telling you that you’re taking this stuff a wee bit too far.
I agree with some of what this guy says about today’s atheist movement. There are a lot of angry, bitter, even hateful atheists out there who are relentlessly vocal on social media. (I’ve written dozens of pissy posts about Christians and their antics, but I don’t think they were hateful. Well, maybe a couple.) But the presence of Asshole Atheists shouldn’t cause one to flee from the Atheist label altogether. You can still declare your non-belief and not be a frothy-mouthed Dawkins/Hitchens/Harris worshipper…even though they have some good things to say, ahem.
Can having an aversion to Christians (or Muslims, whatever) be called xenophobia, as the author implies? I’m not sure. I guess I’m Christianophobic…but even when the “phobics” like me call themselves atheists, is that any reason to hide yourself in the shadows? Guilt by association? That’s why we have personal blogs, my friend. Get one and spout your opinions like the rest of us! It’s kinda therapeutic. 😀
Why I Drifted Away from the Atheist Movement
But for at least a couple years, from sometime in 2006 until sometime in 2009, I was a militant atheist, dashing off dozens of blog posts condemning religious thought for promoting murder and mutilation. I thought we, the atheists of the world, were railing against injustice and speaking truth to power.
Atheism felt just and true and important. But no longer. What happened?
This is quite hilarious. So you have your religious panties in a knot because a show based on science doesn’t feature unprovable, untestable, philosophical, non-science topics? This is why you go out and make your own show which proves the universe was created by the magical invisible sky god. I’m dying to see some of your evidence and experiments. Oh wait, there are already thousands of such shows and movies available. None of them has any evidence, but it’s still a good effort.
Creationists Demand Airtime On Neil deGrasse Tyson’s ‘Cosmos’
Appearing on “The Janet Mefferd Show” on Thursday, Danny Faulkner of Answers In Genesis voiced his complaints about “Cosmos” and how the 13-episode series has described scientific theories, such as evolution, but has failed to shed light on dissenting creationist viewpoints. He said:
“I was struck in the first episode where [Tyson] talked about science and how, you know, all ideas are discussed, you know, everything is up for discussion –- it’s all on the table — and I thought to myself, ‘No, consideration of special creation is definitely not open for discussion, it would seem.'”
This is How You Can Help a Ugandan School Built on Humanist Principles
I’ve posted a couple articles on this site, written by Sean McGuire, about the Kasese Humanist Primary School, a school in Uganda that’s founded and run on Secular Humanist principles, a school that emphasizes science and teaches students to think critically.
These days I’m trying to support secular charities such as Responsible Charity who are actually doing some good in this world without attaching religious strings. This sounds like another worthwhile charity, especially if it helps to counter the evil being done by Christians in that country. Check it out.
Pope Francis’ Invitation To Atheists
He said that people of other religions were also praying for peace, and – departing from his prepared text – he urged atheists to join forces with believers.
“I invite even non-believers to desire peace. (Join us) with your desire, a desire that widens the heart. Let us all unite, either with prayer or with desire, but everyone, for peace,” he said, drawing sustained applause from the crowd.
I like this new Pope, but this grates a bit. Wow, even non-believers are welcome at the Peace Table? Yay! How lovely to have his permission to want a peaceful world. Perhaps he didn’t mean it quite that way (or maybe his interpreter mangled the phrasing), but he is the spokesman for an entire religion and his words carry weight. But at least he’s saying a lot of other great stuff that goes against the traditional grain, so you have our forgiveness, Mr. Pope. 🙂