Faith on the big screen: 8-8/9-09
August 08, 2009
I will confess that I'm not a big movie buff. (This picture shows how most theaters would look if they depended on people like me being there.)
Oh, I see six or eight films a year in theaters and almost none on TV or through DVD rentals. (Well, I've watched kid movies with my grandchildren but that's a different deal.) It's not that I don't appreciate this form of art, it's just that I'd rather be reading or doing a hundred other things. Movie watching seems way too passive for me.
Still, I try to pay some attention to trends in film-making, and thus was intrigued to read this analysis that suggests Hollywood recently has found God again and is about to unload a whole batch of films with religious themes.
The piece comes from Newsmax, which describes itself as "the #1 conservative news agency online" (whatever conservative really means).
I was particularly interested in this observation in the piece:
"When pro-Christian movies do come along, don’t expect them to get much marketing help from the mainstream media, Gainor says, citing CNN as an example. He says CNN mentioned Bill Maher’s anti-religion movie Religulous 24 times near its release, but mentioned The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian just four times around its release. The Narnia movie sold about 30 times more tickets in the United States than did Religulous."
Perhaps that's simply a function of CNN knowing that its audience is more likely to include Maher fans than C.S. Lewis fans. But at any rate, CNN might want to do an internal review of that sort of thing and see if changes need to be made. (Andother question: Who has to sit around and count such stuff?)
The reality is -- as I've often said before -- that the press generally does a poor job of covering religion, so it may take awhile for the news of all the upcoming religion-themed movies to make it into your newspaper or your evening newscast.
Too bad. I think it's an intriguing phenomenon. I don't yet have an exhaustive or satisfying explanation for it, but I suspect it has something to do with understanding that even people who care about faith matters spend money at movie theaters. And isn't money what finally drives Hollywood?
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A POLITICIAN'S GOOD WORDS ON FAITH
Here's a man of faith to keep an eye on, Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, N.J. -- and thanks to Dan Gilgoff "God & Country" blog from U.S. News & World Report for passing along Booker's intriguing words. Oh, to have more such open and educated and inquisitive people in public office.
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P.S.: A couple of weeks ago here on the blog, I mentioned a group called Interfaith Peace-Builders, which sponsors study trips to the Middle East. A Lee's Summit, Mo., pastor of St. Anne's Episcopal Church, the Rev. Cindy Howard, is on a current trip. Without my commenting on how this group or that group might take her findings, I thought you might be interested in a message she's written about what she's found there:
Prophets in Their Own Land
Then Jesus said to them, "Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house." Luke 6:4
In Nazareth today, I was reminded of the rejection of Jesus' message in his own hometown. It is especially hard to be a prophet, to confront oppression, in your own place.
Over the last few days, I have been privileged to meet some amazing prophets in their own land. Israelis who want things to be different in their country.
Nomika Zion, who lives in Sderot, an Israeli town near Gaza. Nomika works with Other Voice. She has refused to surrender her empathy--the ability to feel the pain of another--and continues to reach out to Palestinian residents of Gaza, attempting to create public and concrete partnerships for peace and a good life for all.
Israeli staff, volunteer physicians and other health care workers who are affiliated with Physicians for Human Rights - Israel. They struggle against the occupation by providing medical care, advocating in the courts and elsewhere, and bringing facts into the public eye which the public may not know or may prefer not to know.
Finally the members of New Profile. The courageous Israeli women and men seek to "civil-ize" Israeli society through activities ranging from work with teachers to reduce the impact of militarized education to legal and moral support for conscientious objectors.
May God protect and bless the work of these modern day Israeli prophets as they work to make change a reality in their own land.
Yesterday: Delores said, “Body Birth made 7 billion Killer Humans on Earth since 1900. Why overpopulate the Planet? God is not in control. Humans Are.
Why not Act like it, instead of being 'nuts'?”
God is not in control. I agree. Humans are…
More science for birth control, say I. But the bible says multiply and be fruitful. More education and more science for birth control. You will never stop natural sexual urges. It’s not natural. The church preaches on natural. Like euthanasia. Must die of natural causes. What this means is we all must suffer in our last moments of our natural miracle that we were born at all. We should have a choice.
I am entertaining myself late night – I’m a night owl – with “Joseph Campbell and The Power of Myth with Bill Moyers”. Great fun. Check it out. The hero in us.
Well, said, Secular Parent. I agree! Read her post yesterday: Secular Parent August 07, 2009 at 1:47PM
I started a little amateur survey from Bill’s post yesterday. So far I have interviewed about ten people.
Susan posted yesterday: “I've been so saddened reading about Nate Phelps's abuse at the hands of his father, Fred Phelps. Nate recalls his mother trying to intervene sometimes when his father was going really overboard with his "discipline," and then his father would turn around and "discipline" her. Nate's mother clearly felt an urge to protect her children from their father -- but never took the obvious step of packing them all up and getting them out of the situation.” Continued
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 05:36 AM
Continued: These situations are always sad. Once again most people in America are looking away. Like with the Jews and Hitler. Wait until it is later and many suffer. Why haven’t more people protested against Fred Phelps? There is so much apathy these things continue on. Why don’t women still have equal rights? Because not enough people care. Too many want to be in their little herd, secure, submissive in their church world as well as some nonbelievers. We are all people with natural characteristics. Human nature. Status quo, don’t rock the boat, don’t say anything against us; we might be offended.
Susan wrote: I have a feeling that Atheists and liberals are the only folks who are going to comment here on Biblical Christianity's role in limiting women. But I would seriously love to be proven wrong by hearing some conservative Christian views on the subject. I just have a feeling you WON'T dialog with the rest of us about your views, 'cause you figure we don't have the spirituality to understand where you are coming from. ___________________
Iggy replied: “Susan,
The "fundies" will argue that god always said that women are equal, they will also say that slavery has NEVER been sanctioned in the Bible - the list goes on when it comes to it.
The argument is always "god's word" was perverted, misunderstood, sin stood in the way, etc.
Last Monday after the Bible study it was repeated again and again by the Christians - it is ALWAYS THE FAULT OF THE PERSON, not god's law.
I am amazed sometimes at the zealotry these Christians display - it is unabashful non-shame of irrationality. I could not call it any other way.”
I agree. Continued:
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 05:37 AM
Continued: Susan replied to Iggy, “One tenet that fundamentalist Christians and Atheists seem to hold in common, is the idea that either the whole of the Bible is true or the whole of Christian belief is a complete lie. For both Atheists and Fundamentalists, there seems to be no middle ground wherein a person can believe that God speaks but that imperfect humans also can't help but add in their/our own imperfect ideas.”
Susan, I think god has nothing to do with the bible. If a god exists – in whatever form it may be - it is no more than a catalyst. I have always supported this, “ Believe what you want. But what are you going to do with that belief?
Red said to Iggy, “I'm not at all religious but as a long time feminist I am delighted that the Pentecostals have finally caught up with many other Protestant churches and appointed a woman to their governing board.”
This is great. Now women can be in power to promote make believe, too. As a Humanist/Atheist - whatever you want to call me – I’m beginning to lean toward “fun lover” – I don’t see this as something great for feminists. I have two daughters and a great supporter of women. Even if I didn’t have two daughters, I love women. They should be equal. But I don’t see promoting a sky daddy as advancement.
Susan, I think you are probably the most sensible person posting on a regular basis here. This is a nice break. Thanks.
Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 05:41 AM
"Iggy, I think you are right about some fundamentalists today insisting that God's Word has always been for equality between the sexes -- but that some people have just been reading it wrong."
In Genesis God/Us made Equality between the sexes with High Tech Equal Clone Birth. The Female was made from the Male Rib, in a High Tech Lab, in the Garden of Eden, not by Body Birth. Genesis 2.
The Sexes have never been Equal, since they started Body Birth Genetic and Physical Defective Children. Humans lost their Agape Love for God, and started desiring their Mates.
Genesis 3:16. KJV. "Unto the woman he (LORD God/Us) said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and they conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children: and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee."
Genesis 3:17-19. "And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shall not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life: Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thous taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return."
Humans lost their Eternal Physical Life After Birth, with God/Us, on Planets and in Spaceships.
God/Us, our High Tech Human Peace Ancestors, Colonized Earth, and Reproduced Equal Male and Female Clone Peace Helpmeet Caretakers of Planet Earth.
Human Bondage was the Original Sin of Purebred Human Male and Female Clones, and continues today. Instead of making a High Tech Womb with our High Tech, we make Atom and Nuclear Bombs and Atomic and Nuclear Toxic Waste on land and sea.
What Kind of Love of God and our Home Planet is this? Ever since Human Generation Birth, Death and Rebirth, Humans have had the Killer Lifestyle on our Home Planet. And Humans have Killed Each Other, and All Life on the Planet, and now have almost Killed their Ozone Canopy and Eco System.
Then Life as we Know it cannot continue on Earth.
So when have Females had Equality on Earth, while being Subjected to the Male, ever since they made Misbred Genetic and Physical Defective Children?
We need a Movie about this High Tech/Supernatural view of Genesis 1-3.
Posted by: Dolores Lear | August 08, 2009 at 07:40 AM
Cole, I think you could be right that promoting more women to high positions in religions may not be a great thing for feminism. Especially if those religions continue to promote hierarchy -- some people being "over" others -- rather than empowering individuals to think for themselves. In a sense, it could sometimes even be a case of having a few "token" women at the highest levels to give an appearance of being more progressive than they really are.
Bill, I was much inspired reading the article on Mayor Cory Booker. Especially some concepts he introduced to me -- such as the idea that "no finite set ... can capture the infinite" (physics). So he seems to see all the world religions as complementary. I was also intrigued with his idea that we should be fighting WITH God for justice -- like Abraham and later Moses, who entreated the Lord not to destroy people.
Since we're on movies, I'd like to share about Le Festin, the song from Ratatouille, because I just love listening to it. My husband has also been making Ratatouille for the last few weekends and we love it, too. It makes me understand why the French have a spiritual relationship with their food. I think Charlie Scopelliti is the writer of Le Festin, and if I'm remembering right I think he initially wrote the lyrics in English, but decided the song worked better in French.
Here's the first verse in English, and also a link where you can listen to the song, and another where you can read all the lyrics in French and English.
"Dreams are to lovers as wine is to friends
Carried through lifetimes (and) spilled now and then
I am driven by hunger, so saddened to be
Theiving in darkness; I know you're not pleased
But nothing worth eating is free"
Posted by: Susan | August 08, 2009 at 09:24 AM
"Yesterday: Delores said, “Body Birth made 7 billion Killer Humans on Earth since 1900. Why overpopulate the Planet? God is not in control. Humans Are. - Iggy to Susan:"The argument is always "god's word" was perverted, misunderstood, sin stood in the way, etc."
All writings of Religion and Myth, through many translations, still has the Original High Tech Knowledge in it, when translated by High Tech Science.
Genesis 1:26a-27a. KJV. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:. - And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it;"
I accept Verse 27a., was added by Body Birth Humans when they translated these writings. How would they Know Humans could Reproduce a female from the male rib by High Tech?
When Humans Search the Scriptures and Myth with a High Tech Science Translation, that we have today, the High Tech Science in these writings will be easy to separate, as to High Tech Humans or Natural Humans.
Atlantis is recorded as Myth, but it was a High Tech Human Society like we are today. Many of the writings in the accepted Christian Bible have their High Tech Science that also were about the Noah/Atlantis Society before the Planetary Flood.
We have High Tech Humans today, and still some natives that still live without High Tech, but Humans with High Tech have retaken most of the usable land on Earth.
Atlantis split down the middle and sank. Planet Earth was all one land mass at Colonization. It also split down the middle as shown on our flat maps, and sank.
If Saved Humans passed on this Knowledge about Atlantis, what did Humans call it? Supernatural? Noah and Atlantis, were the same past event in the History of Life on Earth.
Today we also Know how to Colonize Planets, and would go by the Steps/Days in Genesis. So what is Supernatural about Colonization, to High Tech Humans today?
What is Supernatural today ,about making a Human Fetus in the High Tech lab, without sex to the female?
With High Tech Womb Reproduction, Defective Human Body Birth would be a Sin.
Posted by: Dolores Lear | August 08, 2009 at 09:35 AM
Pastor Pip wrote>>>>>>>>>I think this is one of the saddest things in established Christianity - we do not risk enough. We go with the safe and the well-established path. I've nothing against respecting tradition and not reinventing a wheel that works, but the Gospel is all about living lives free of fear and taking risks on behalf of others and God. It's the way Jesus lived. It seems to me it's the way Jesus asks us to live.
My fellow Christian atheist... (you do realize that you are an atheist when it comes to all other "false" gods you don't believe in, right? - some of us just take it one god further - or three gods further to completely shed the superstisions of religion)
Please, define what "risking" means for a Christian? I believe you are telling us another hellish "Three Little Piggies" story when you want to order a pork chop. What the heck are Christians risking or are "not" risking? - another intepretation by a denomination they don't belong to?
Last Monday a group of 5 atheists was at a Bible study and those "fundies" are 100% sure they are going to heaven because of "faith" and we as atheists going to hell.
A thought crime of "risking" that god's word may have been perverted (always is as they would say anyway) or a chapter/book lost/burned/discarded/stored away or NOT "VOTED" ON AT THE COUNCIL OF NICEA IN 325 is not even entering their mind. That book may have said somethign along the lines - you can believe whatever you want, but I will give atheists a preference for figureing out that you don't have to be a Christian and still be a normal person, not "sinful" but normal - they will go to heaven first bypassing hell and you Christians will spend 4 days in Hell?
Are you willing to "risk" this thought crime? Not a single minister I have spoken over the years would admit it. They will in a round about way - e.g. that aliens may have created this world and evolution is real, but this is where it stops - "I cannot accept it because this is not what I believe"
Pip, don't shoot yourself in the foot with your illogical theological statments of your own - this is a deviation from the party line.
Does your chruch have Bible studies? - e-mail me [email protected] We'd love to visit with your flock.
Posted by: IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 09:41 AM
Re: Christian risk taking...
Darrel Ray, Kansas City local and author of "The God Virus" has an article "Why there are no monotheistic religions. Educating believers." http://www.religioustolerance.org/ray01.htm It looks like he is offering a challenging approach to "Christian risk taking" in it. Why let Christians define what the Bible means? Why not use your own "risk" taking definitions - e.g. Satan as another god? - and challenge them with it? Or Satan "the God?" and humans misintepreting and perverting his word.
In our Bible studies we use these kinds of "thought crimes" all the time. It is "shocking" to Christians that one can even think about anything like this. To them it is "gibberish" or "god will never allow this", "this is not the god I know" - or something along these lines.
So, what kind of "risk" taking is "not" gibberish to Christians? It is virtually impossible to "nail" a Christian on "risk" or "deviation/risk taking". No matter what kind of "earthly things" they do, they typically "always find" a justification in "we are all sinful" no matter what and can never rise up to god's word.
This varies from "we are born evil" to "born with capactity for evil". But Evil is alwyas on their mind. The other day I was tlking to a minsiter in a non denominational church for over 1 hour - he had to change his story about born evil to "capactity" for evil even when the baby is in the womb of the mother and the "sinful world" is influencing him through the invisible "first sin" and placenta. He was serious!
This reminds me of the Sodom and Gomorrah - god told Lot he'll spare the cities if 10 people are found who are without sin. Lot could not find any. Are you frigging kidding me? There were no 10 babies - new born, under 1 year old - who were without sin? What are their sins? Pooping without prayer to Yahweh? They have no capacity to NOT POOP. Or babies are not "people?" - another way to look at it? - untill what age are they not considered people?
So, how would you take the story of Lot? And his wife turning into a pillar of salt? - another metaphor?
Pastor Pip, is this "risk taking?" - how much risk taking are you taking? Why do you take a risk on one verse in the Bible and not the other.
Posted by: IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 11:09 AM
Bill said, “I will confess that I'm not a big movie buff. (This picture shows how most theaters would look if they depended on people like me being there.)”
That’s funny. Me, too.
Maybe religious themes are old news. Maybe that is why they don’t get as much attention. Maybe it is just boring. Hard to figure Hollywood.
Prophets? I find it hard to get enthused about progress in a country when they rely on make believe. It’s good people are trying to make peace, but can’t it be done by people who are maybe intelligent…instead of using magic?
0. prophecy - knowledge of the future (usually said to be obtained from a divine source) wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn
0. prophet - someone who speaks by divine inspiration; someone who is an interpreter of the will of God wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn
At the bottom of the article below are three more links which are interesting:
No Evidence That Therapy Can Turn Gays Straight
Charge: T. Rex Was a Chicken and a Baby Killer
Temptation Harder to Resist Than You Think, Study Suggests
funny animal clips!
Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 08, 2009 at 11:09 AM
Iggy wrote, "Please, define what 'risking' means for a Christian?"
I can't answer for Pip, but for me it means believing that God is a loving Father Who wants us to have fun exploring the world and ideas, and Who wants us to learn to think for ourselves.
This may not seem such a risky way of thinking, to people who've already been freethinkers for many years. But it's a stark contrast with the version of Christianity that promotes fear and intolerance "just to be on the safe side (just in case God's really cruel and not loving)."
When I read the post where Nate Phelps's sister Katharine was saying that possibly she was wrong about needing to hate gays to ensure her salvation (though she didn't use the word "gays") -- but asked if she was wrong then what harm done? --
This reminded me of similar arguments I've heard from people -- that if my belief in universal salvation is wrong, then I've done a horrible thing by spreading a false sense of security. Whereas if the hell preachers are wrong -- what harm done?
Yet I think living in fear does a whole lot of harm: Fred Phelps and his followers show the extreme of what can happen to people who spend their whole lives motivated by fear and a need to prove to God that they truly do hate the things they think He hates. And I'm sure they'd say their whole hate-campaign is their way of "taking risks for God." But really they're just being a bunch of scaredy-cat bullies.
Applying what I've just learned from Mayor Cory Booker, we need to follow the examples of the men of God who were willing to speak their minds and tell God what they really thought.
Posted by: Susan | August 08, 2009 at 11:26 AM
Cole doesn't think that promoting women to powerful positions within religion is an advancement, but "the Bible and the Church have been the greatest stumbling blocks in the the way of women's emancipation" according to atheist Elizabeth Cady Stanton !
Surely, the best way to change any belief such as the ridiculous religious view of women as either Saints or Jezebels is to change the religion, and how best to do that, but from the inside ! That's why women are needed as leaders of the religious establishment.
Cole, you are fixated on this sky daddy thing, but you gotta realise that a lot of this patriarchal nonsense is coming from religion and it needs to be changed to benefit all society both secular and religious.
You said that Susan was sensible in her posts - yes she is, and has a lot of sensible things to say but she still believes in a "sky daddy' apparently and has said so many times.
Posted by: Red Biddy | August 08, 2009 at 05:32 PM
Red Biddy, I think it's good when women are higher up in the church, IF they don't join with the patriarchal establishment. (But then -- whose favor do they need to get the promotion, you know?)
One highly-educated woman I know, who rose to a high position in her church, is one of the "counselors" I mentioned a while back who told an abused wife she needed to drop the restraining order and resume living with her abuser in order to work on the abuse problems "together."
I think this counselor's intentions were good -- but the Assemblies of God still seems to be largely distrusting of "worldly" research about the best ways to break the cycle of abuse.
I imagine that in more liberal denominations like the Episcopal church, both male and female pastors/counselors would be likely to draw on all the really good secular information that is out there, which shows that there's a higher rate of success when abusers get personal counseling and not marriage counseling, because it's really important for them to focus on their own problems and not on how the people around them are really to blame for "making" them mad.
It's true that the person being abused usually has lots of issues too (otherwise why would she be with an abuser?) -- and I think this is where some people who haven't been educated about the cycle of abuse get caught up in thinking, "Well, they're BOTH messed up so they BOTH need counseling -- so why not just kill two birds with one stone?" -- and don't even realize how this tends to kill the couple's chance of breaking the cycle. (Continued)
Posted by: Susan | August 08, 2009 at 06:10 PM
Unlike Bill I just love the movies, although I prefer to watch them at home now, than sit in an empty movie theatre as was the case last week when I took in the latest Harry Potter movie !
It's really not surprising that documentaries such as Bill Maher's Religulous are less popular than spectacular epics like the Chronicles of Narnia, but let's face it, one is designed for "family" viewing the other is not !
The so called religious themed movies are all pure science fiction anyway and it is in that genre that they are created. I'm sure future sci-fi/religious themed movies will receive plenty of publicity when they come out. They will be pushed as sci-fi rather than religious themed - it sells better ! I shall certainly get the DVDs - they sound a lot of fun !
Some of the old "straight" religious movies have been kind of laughable, like The Ten Commandments with a green eyed Moses (Charlton Heston) and Cecil B de Mill as the voice of God with whistling badly fitting dentures ! The film got an Oscar for special effects, which it certainly wouldn't get now with the advent of CIG technology.
As for Mel Gibson's Passion of Christ I haven't seen it (don't intend to) but it sounds like the ultimate "snuff" film.
Posted by: Red Biddy | August 08, 2009 at 06:14 PM
(Continued) So ... in a nutshell, it's good to promote women, but then it's not so good if the promotion becomes the sole evidence that the denomination is "pro-woman."
Of course, people from these more conservative denominations are likely to feel like I'm "demonizing," and saying that all conservative Christian men beat their wives. And I actually think wife-beating is pretty rare, and certainly not considered acceptable.
However, there does seem to be a high degree of verbal abuse. And lots of anger problems. As a matter if fact, some conservatives have been specially concerned about the male anger -- they feel like it's because of how men are getting "demasculinized" because of feminism. They reason that since men are no longer being allowed to express their masculinity in normal ways, and don't even have proper masculine role models, this causes them to be "hyper-masculine" and very angry.
I think there may be some truth in this idea -- not that it's because of feminism, but there seem to be a lot of adults who think it's okay to interfere in children's play ... i.e. little boys who want to pretend to be police officers with toy guns will often get "re-directed" to less aggressive play. Aggressive is seen as bad.
I only think it's acceptable to re-direct children's play if someone's getting hurt, or likely to get hurt. Otherwise just let them act out their ideas and have fun.
Posted by: Susan | August 08, 2009 at 06:23 PM
Although I have been reading Bill's blog for a while, I have not payed that much attention to comments, until another Freethinker brought something to my attention.
And I just want to say, that I hope that any Christians who might be reading these posts don't take "KCFreethinker" or "member" as in any way representative of Freethinkers in Kansas City. I know a number of Freethinkers, and they are a fun loving lot, but they don't believe in verbally, or otherwise, abusing people. My own view is that people should be treated respectfully because ONE, it is the right thing to do, and TWO, to do otherwise is counter productive.
Of course, anyone can lose their temper of have a bad day, but when something consistently, for months and months, make vile and repugant remarks thie is a symptom of some deeper problem. I think the poster Susan comes closest to demonstrating true Freethinking than the so called members of "KCFreethinkers". They sure as heck don't represent me.
And Bill, I know you don't think they are representative either.
Posted by: A Kansas Freethinker | August 08, 2009 at 06:31 PM
By the way, Red Biddy, I have started to look forward to your remarks. They are always pithy and very entertaining! (Informative too!)
Posted by: A Kansas Freethinker | August 08, 2009 at 06:32 PM
What is a Freethinker?
We are getting some responses from Freethinkers that differ from the Freethinkers that have been posting here for a year. Will Freethinkers become as diverse as religious people.
"A person who forms opinions about religion on the basis of reason, independently of tradition, authority, or established belief. - Reason is a tool of critical thought that limits the truth of a statement according to the strict tests of the scientific method. For a statement to be considered true it must be testable ... - There is no great mystery to morality. Most freethinkers employ the simple yardsticks of reason and kindness."
I have not found a category for me, that accepts the Bible as a High Tech History of High Tech Peace Humans, God/Us in Genesis. Scientific Method Colonized Earth, and reproduced Male and Female Clones. Is this Freethinking? Or Scientific Fact today?
In the past century, many people, wrote many books about Gods in fiery chariots, but they did not especially connect it with our High Tech Peace Human Ancestors from Space, that Colonized Earth, although Space Aliens were used.
Nor, do they connect them with the Noah/Atlantis High Tech Society, that were Killers and Polluters, like we are today.
Most Religious Humans accept the Peace God/Us in Genesis, is also the Killer God in Genesis, and all accepted Bible Books. Myth Gods also Killed.
Zacharia Sitchin, translated buried tablets, in the MidEast. He said Human Aliens came to Earth and changed Evolving humans into Humans like we are today.
Humans do make a Fetus in the High Tech Lab, without the seeding of the female by the male. This is the same as the Immaculate Conception of Mary and her Cousin Elizabeth in the New Testament, and other females including Abraham's Sarah, and Sampson's mother in the Old Testament. None were seeded by a male, and all had sons.
We have High Tech Knowledge of how to Colonize a Planet.
When we progress to a High Tech Womb, for Reproducing Pure-bred Humans Supernaturally, will we call Reproducing Misbred Humans by Body Birth, a NoNo, or a Sin also?
So was Life on Earth Colonized by High Tech, or did it Evolve? We have Science Evidence today that it was Colonized, like recorded in Genesis 1.
Posted by: Dolores Lear | August 09, 2009 at 06:47 AM
Red, maybe you should take a chill pill. Your acting like the blog monitor again. Such arrogance. Maybe you should get out of the past. Just like Darwin, Stanton did a lot of good, but they both were not right about everything. We learn as we go and take up new approaches. Like adhering to old music and movie values as if they are better than modern.
A Kansas Freethinker, if you are of our community I should know you. Who are you? I doubt I will get an answer, because you are probably not who you say you are. I just got an email thru another site who sounds like somebody who used to post here. When it is not on this site there is a lot of cussing. So classy. You people are so funny and afraid.
Some need to grow up and move on to the real world in 2009.
Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 09, 2009 at 07:22 AM
Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole
Posted by: memberofKCFreeThinkers.org | August 09, 2009 at 08:34 AM
Atheism by definition is shaped by the idea of God. By opposing Jesus atheists acknowledge Him. Christianity is now, by God's providence, the great counter-cultural claim.
Posted by: trapblock | August 09, 2009 at 08:56 AM
Cole, I think you are taking it wrong that Red Biddy disagrees with you as to whether it's really progress for women to get promoted into church leadership. I don't think she was trying to monitor and tell you what you could or couldn't say -- just expressing a different point of view.
I think you both make valid points: i.e. it can be very healing for many couples (especially in very conservative churches) to drop out of church for a while, and just relate to one another as human beings without getting trapped up by thinking one of you needs to totally submit to the other.
But since many people aren't going to "get out from under" dogma, it can be a good thing for more women to get into leadership. BUT for example, in case folks haven't noticed, as the Episcopalian church has gotten increasingly liberal, the most conservative Episcopalians have reacted by breaking off to form the Anglican Church in America.
So there's always the risk that if a denomination gets "too" pro-woman, there will be many who will either switch denominations or form their own uber-conservative denomination. Which of course they have a right to do.
It's just a whole lot like politics -- only since religious constituents tend to lean somewhat more toward the traditional end of the spectrum, their "radical compromises" don't look so radical to the rest of society -- which may have been partly what Iggy meant when he found the article about the Assemblies of God's female appointment boring. (Continued)
Posted by: Susan | August 09, 2009 at 09:24 AM
(Continued) So on the one hand I think it's a wonderful thing that many conservative-turned-progressive folks are willing to stay in their old churches and work to transform from within.
To me, there's just a whole lot for people in this situation to consider. I.e., if I stayed in my old church to transform it from within, I'd run the risk of my children being very influenced by some teachings that I now see as harmful. I think in our case, there's a greater likelihood of staying harming my children, than there is of me accomplishing extensive change. After all, there are limits to how much you can say before you are asked to be quiet or just leave.
I think with any organization there is going to be politics -- the difference with religious organizaions is that the decisions that are reached are often presented as God's will for how we should all live. Until God reveals something different to church leadership.
But, you know, even when it comes to politics in the public arena, there are varied opinions as to whether any good can ever be accomplished through the political "machine." I.e. some would say if you want to do someting good for society, stay out of politics. Whereas others would say that you just have to jump into that ring and try to keep yourself as clean as you can, because they feel policy changes are the only way to affect real change. (Continued)
Posted by: Susan | August 09, 2009 at 09:37 AM
(Continued) So, Cole and Red Biddy -- I say don't get too offended with one another. If we can keep this discussion going, I think we can all learn a lot from your/our different perspectives.
A Kansas Freethinker, I think it's fine if the views expressed by Iggy and Cole don't represent the views shared by you and the area Freethinkers you know. I know this may come as a shock to you, but some of the Christians who post here don't see my views as representative of Christianity as they know it.
And as you can see, Cole and Red Biddy are both Atheists, and yet have opposite views at times. If we can resist the temptation to get offended and say divisive things, I think we can all learn a lot from one another.
I've felt kind of bummed that my recent attempts to get the conservative Christians here involved in a dialog about the belief in the whole Bible as the inerrant Word of God -- and whether this belief can lead to abuses against women and children. So far when I try to start these kinds of discussions, I just get accused of "smearing" fundamentalists.
It's true that MY opinion is that it's harmful to promote the whole Bible as the inerrant Word of God -- but for the life of me, I can't understand why someone who disagrees can't find any other way to support their argument, besides just accusing me of "smearing," and refusing to discuss the issue any further.
It makes me think they just don't have anything intelligent to say about the issue, or else they think those of a different opinion simply lack the spiritual maturity to understand the beauty of what the Bible teaches about God's hierarchy wherein certain people are "over" other people.
Posted by: Susan | August 09, 2009 at 09:59 AM
A Kansas FreeThinker is in "Kansas" or claims to be in Kansas. He can be a Kansas native, but live on MO side or anywhere else in the U.S., the world or the Universe. He maybe an alien for all we know and still be a FreeThinker.
He can call himself a FreeThinker for all I care, thus redefining and defining on his own what a FreeThinker is. Satan, the Lord of the Lords, has given him free will to do so and it's up to Satan, the Lord of the Lords, to send him to either hell or heaven of course.
I would love to get together with this particular "Kansas FreeThinker" and pick his/her brain.
"Kansas FreeThinker" are you local in Kansas City? Please, visit http://www.KCFreeThinkers.org/calendar.htm for a list of freethinking events in Kansas City. Please, post here or e-mail [email protected] which one you are attending and we'll be glad to chat with you - sounds like it maybe an interesting endeavor.
Bible Study at a local church on the Book of Revelations with Atheists - tonight, Sunday 6 p.m. This Bible study is normally 8-10 people, there are goign to be 5-6 atheists attending. Shoudl be interesting. E-mail [email protected] for information.
Posted by: IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org | August 09, 2009 at 10:28 AM
Hi, trapblock. It's good to see you over here. We've met a few times over at the K.C. Star Faith Walk column, where I post as Panzie (I wasn't able to register there as Susan, but now I'm thinking that from now on whenever I post on a new thread over there, I'll briefly add that I'm Susan over here, since some of the same people post both places; how cool that you get to be trapblock both places!).
I see your point that the term, Atheism, is shaped by the idea of God. I guess if there had been no such thing as theism, it might have just been called "naturalism" or "materialism" or something, huh?
We were blessed the other day when my husband's employer gave everyone Blockbuster gift certificates, and he brought home "The Soloist" among other movies. We started watching it last night -- what an awesome story!
One interesting diversion was where the journalist thinks he's not going to get the story he wanted 'cause the Soloist didn't show up, so he's interviewing some guy from an Atheist group that adopted a highway ... and he's asking stuff like, So you guys are basically united by what you don't believe in, you must not have much to talk about, huh? But then he gets the call that The Soloist showed up and is playing his cello, so he leaves the "boring" Atheist story to follow the "real" story ...
But in truth, I think everyone (whether Atheist, Theist, Deist, or whatever) has an interesting story if you really want to hear it. I hope you'll stick around!
Posted by: Susan | August 09, 2009 at 12:42 PM