What Happens at an Exorcism and Why It Should Worry Us.


“There were only a small number of priests who had any real expertise, and they were getting calls from all over the country.” So many attended the conference, he said – “They must have requests.” Bishop Thomas Paprocki

Bishop Thomas Paprocki - The organiser of this October's Conference on Exocorism 

In October 2010, a Catholic conference was held in Baltimore, Maryland (preceding yet another) attended by 56 US Bishops and 66 Priests.  That Bishops had bothered to attend was indeed a novelty because the annual conference is normally only attended by Priests. What the focus of this conference is certainly surprising considering that it was held in a (theoretically) civilised country.  None the less, these Priests and Bishops find reason to gather every year to discuss exorcism.

While all Catholic priests are permitted by the Vatican to perform these ceremonies, very few American are trained and able to. Though how much training does it take in order to become ‘proficient’ in bullying, manipulating, and terrifying and further brainwashing an already troubled individual into first believing that their troubles are due to a demonic possession and secondly that their lifestyle had allowed the possession to occur in the first place.  The conference was meant to train priests in the ‘art’ of exorcism and was organised by the Bishop Thomas Paprocki who is also the chair of the Bishops’ Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance.

Paprocki is of the view that there is an increasing demand for exorcism in the US despite the lack of data on the subject: But when has real evidence had anything to do with what the Catholic church believes or how they decide to act.  Out of the 68 million Catholics in the US, only an estimated 6 to 14 are ‘trained exorcists‘ though the church seems determined to rectify this issue and plunge America further back toward the Dark Ages of Europe and the reign of tyranny and fear exerted by the Inquisition.  One of those exorcists is the Rev Gary Thomas of Saratoga and the subject of The Rite.  (The book by Matt Baglio and forthcoming film starring Sir Anthony Hopkins)

Paprocki’s feeling is seconded by Rev. Thomas.  Exorcism is being requested by parishioners who have family they believe to be in need of this ‘service’ yet there is no mention of any clerical recommendation.  I am sure these family members are well-meaning but the greatest harm is often caused by the best intentions (Thanks to Terry Goodkind for that one.).  The Rev. believes the cause of this demand is an increase in paganism and ‘idolatrous activity’ by Catholics.   This is, of course, garbage and garbage of the sort spouted by the likes of Michael Voris.  The Church feels threatened by its lack (or loss) of privilege in the developed world and is trying to increase their influence by any means necessary.  When you consider that even the president of the National Federation of Priests, Rev. Richard Vega, has not heard of any requests at all.  He speculated that immigrant Catholics, who were probably more familiar with the practice, may be making requests.  He also reported to the Guardian that it is Canon Law requires every diocese have a trained exorcist.  That many do not, he blames on a post Vatican II church.  In 2005 Pope John Paul II wrote to all US Bishops instructing them to train an exorcist.  Rev Thomas was asked when the initial candidate declined and despite his own reservations that it was not what he had ‘signed up for’, he took the course while in Rome on a sabbatical.

“Some demons are very strong,” he said. “So it needs repeated prayer and fasting and penance.” People breaking up relationships don’t always make a clean break. “The relationship didn’t develop overnight and is not broken overnight.”Paprocki

An exorcism requires discernment to determine whether or not the person ‘brought in’ is really in need of one or if their family just thinks they are.  The ritual is not just performed on demand (apparently) but it seems a rather convenient idea that a person may not realise they are possessed and may be subjected to this treatment against their will by the very people with a vested interest in the belief in the practice.  The initial discernment is carried out by team including a physician, a clinical psychologist and a psychiatrist who (should all know better) are all practising Catholics.  Rev. Thomas claims that only five out of one hundred requests (again gave no real indication of the number of requests) result in an exorcism and that the exorcist is an ‘ultimate sceptic‘ (doubtful) based only on the idea that they do not just assume that all those who ask for the ritual need one.  This is NOT a sceptical outlook because they STILL believe in demonic possession despite the lack of evidence in favour of it and they STILL practice an outdated, unnecessary and harmful (extreme stress) practice.

“The person who is possessed may not even realise it. It’s more frequent that someone would bring a person in,”Paprocki.

The bishop Paprocki strongly believes in the need for exorcism and tried to explain possession it in terms of a relationship between a human and a demon having turned sour.  He states that it may have gone bad due to the human having realised their error.  This idea is highly speculative and even dubious, when accuracy is brought into question.  It is absurd, obtuse and fatuous to contrast an imagined demonic possession (based entirely on superstition and ill-conceived dogma) to real human relationships.  Paprocki is a fool to believe this rubbish and a dangerous fool to be promoting the practice and spreading his belief.  The Rev. Thomas says that he has performed 40 exorcisms over five years on five people.  Two gave up the ‘project’ due to time constraints.

When asked what was involved after the discernment, Thomas told The Guardian that it consists of a set of prayers meant to break up the relationship between the possessed and the demon (so a fake problem is solved with a fake cure.  It sounds about right for the church)  in order to force the demon out.  Even Thomas won’t call the work rewarding, and is reluctant to even go so far as to call it meaningful, he calls the work arduous and time-consuming with little chance of success.  Never thought that it’s because none of it is real and you have based at least the last 15 years on lies and half-truths, good Reverend?

The Exorcism of Emily Rose

The demand for exorcism – as seen in Hollywood films such as The Exorcism of Emily Rose – is growing in the US. Photograph: ScreenGem/Everett / Rex Features

Both the Bishop and the priest have found themselves having to reassure people regarding the nature and risks of possession; correcting mythology with more mythology to the people who have already been misled into believing Christianity at all.

“Possession is not an involuntary thing. It’s not contagious. The person themselves has to open the door,” Paprocki said. To those who come to Thomas asking, “‘How do I protect myself from being inhabited by a demon?’ I say if you have a prayer life, if you have a sacrament life, if you have a faith life – you have nothing to fear.”

This is assuming that those brought in (or anyone) believe in either demons or possession.  The bishop believes that demons must be invited but are always looking for a way in.  80% of those brought to the Bishop have been sexually abused by a family member or ‘someone else’  and this abuse, the Bishop says, leaves the victim vulnerable to the possession of demons.  It just emphasises the church’s tendency to externalise blame, hold the victim responsible for the actions of others, and typical of this barbaric and outdated religion of ridiculous superstition.

Exorcisms which have made the news are those that have ended in tragedy but were dismissed by the Bishop as having been carried out by untrained amateurs who resorted to beatings drownings and asphyxiation in order to ‘drive the demon out’.  Forget the need for training and more of these pointless rituals,  there is a need for a worldwide ban on the practice.  We only hear about the handful that are even reported but how many tragedies go unmentioned?  How many of these people are permanently damaged or injured by this practice?  We don’t hear about them for the same reason we didn’t hear of the widespread (and current) practice of protecting paedophiles for so long: the church do not regard themselves as subject to the man-made laws or morals that contradict their own idiotic philosophy.  It is in the interest of public safety that the practice is halted entirely rather than escalated.  When you consider that there are some who regard the ritual to be dangerous to the exorcist but the danger was also dismissed by the Bishop (who has never performed one) who put the deaths down to the ignorance of the untrained.  He added that the ‘unofficial’ exorcism were merely ‘ineffective’ and that “Jesus is more powerful than the Devil”.  Not the first to close their eyes and mind to reality but his influence on this subject makes him dangerous.

The Bishop’s dismissal make little impact on the Reverend who believes that the danger to exorcists is very real.  They can be attacked emotionally, physically and psychological but added that he had never experienced a physical attack (I wonder why? duh) but his celibacy is often attacked.  Often? 8 a year for 5 years is often?  Heaven for bid he ever quit the church and get a real church: the shock would probably induce a stroke.  Paprocki and Thomas both refer to demons and devils in the plural and the singular but the Bishop seems proud (isn’t pride a sin?) to admit this as if he was showing off some expertise on the matter.

“I use those interchangeably,” Paprocki said. “Sometimes a person can be possessed by more than one devil.”

According to these paranoid papists, a demon is a spiritual being who has rejected God and is being punished eternally for that ‘crime’ and the trick to a successful ritual is to learn the demon/devil’s real name while remaining aware that the Devil is the Prince of lies.  That simple huh?  The knowledge of this grants the exorcist power over the demon and the ability to banish it.  They have both noted that this cannot be done in one session so one wonders how much the church charges for their time.  It also begs the question of why the exorcist would believe a word spoken by/through the possessed?  The rarity of exorcism is, claims Paprocki, due to the rarity of real possession (no shit, Sherlock moment?).  The Bishop went on to say that the Devil’s ‘real’ game is temptation (aside from his earlier claim that demons are always looking for a way in) so it is a mistake to assume that the only danger lies in possession.  The devil is no more real than God, Jesus or any other mythology for that matter and it is foolish to fear mere characters in stories.

Polish exorcists gather in Warsaw

The national congress comes as part of a policy by Poland’s Catholic Church to lift the veil on what was once a secretive practice Photo: CORBIS

Clearly these men (and those who follow his promotion of exorcism) are deranged and should be removed from positions where they can influence the ideas and actions of others (and possibly placed in psychiatric institutions?) so they can do no further harm.  Regardless of the improbability of their claims and ideas, people DO listen to these men and change their minds according to what their local clergy tell them to think so these insane and parasitical ideas of demons, devils and possession are being spread and have more than merely the potential to cause very real and lasting (if not permanent) harm.

Sources

 

 






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Angry, Atheists!?


“If you want to be taken seriously, try allowing people to comment and self moderate their comments rather than halt them so you can  filter out any criticism.  Your feed shows only your own confirmation bias and fear of any comment which does not agree entirely with your own warped ideas.

You spout utter rubbish against secularism and atheists about our anger, but has it even occurred to you why we are so enraged?  It is because people like you publicly tell lies about us and then deny us any chance of refuting those claims.  You tell others we hate you (untrue, as I don’t know you) but you have no idea about what it means to be an atheist.  We do not worship anything.  It is NOT a belief system and I think you should get your own facts straight rather than spreading the erroneous ideas that atheism is an empty and selfish belief.

I just to make you aware, I will be publishing this message and any reply you send me on my blog.

http://www.asystemofrandomtangents.wordpress.com”

This is the personal message I sent when my comment had been filtered for moderation against the below video.  I have not had a reply yet but I expect one soon.  This is not the worst of his videos by far.  They are all riddled with misinformation and deliberate twisting of the facts.  The idea of living under ANY form of active monarchy is sickening enough but to even suggest that a dictatorship could be even close to benevolent is laughable.  It would certainly not be benevolent toward non-Catholics.  What this man is calling for is the return of the Inquisition, and an end to any freedom of belief and expression, and any separation of church and state.  Rather than make the effort to get on with other groups, they bitch and complain about not being permitted to force their hateful doctrines on the rest of us.  This is quite typical of the catholic church  We need to make it loud and clear that we do not intend to prevent them from believing as they choose, but nor will we sit back and put up with the groundless claims made against us.

If any of you would like to send your own comments, their channel address is RealCatholicTV.  The channel has been active since august 2008 and has 4095 subscribers already.  If you get a reply I would be very interested to hear about it.

Hypocrisy of Disgusting Proportion


The other day I posted an article written by Miss Satterfield, along with my response to her piece and the resulting conversation.  I was hoping for this issue to be resolved but she appears to disagree and has failed to answer.   Her idea of a conversation is therefore to slap down those who disagree with her and dare to question her with falsehoods and delusions and then answer a response with another deluded diatribe.  I was hoping to at least find a blog entry in response to any comments she had received regarding the piece but I was out of luck there too.  What I did find was this; another list of deluded drivel about how Christians in particular are so hard done by.  I will dissect it paragraph by paragraph.

Chrissy Satterfield 0n The Voice X Change.
1/25/10

When an Atheist falls and no one is around to hear it does it still make a noise? Probably not, but when a Christian falls you better believe millions of people will hear about it and make it a point to ridicule them. I am sick to the core that Christianity is frowned upon here in the United States. Don’t try to deny it either…try bringing up your Christian faith around ANYONE and they look at you like you have lobsters crawling out of your ears. “GASP…you believe in something other than yourself?!!!?? You follow a moral compass and try to live by the 10 commandments?!!?!? How do you sleep at night?” Ugh, it’s like you can’t even talk about your faith as a Christian without someone rolling their eyes or doing whatever they can to shake you up or poke holes in your testimony. But as soon as a Muslim or an Atheist or a Jedi begins to open up about their beliefs…everyone perks up their PC ears and listens without interrupting or objecting. They nod their head up and down as if they understand and they are so accepting of everything…Everything BUT Christianity. It’s almost as if people resent us. What is wrong with this scenario?

First point:  ‘It‘? I would previously have thought that this was a mere slip but having read some of her more recent ‘work’, this would be a naive assumption.  She has, in her first sentence, dehumanised the atheist community with a word and goes on to refer to the hypothetical Christian as ‘them’.  Christianity is not frowned upon and she has every right to believe in what she chooses.  What is frowned upon is the non-stop Evangelist proselytism. What is frowned upon is that any objection to this constant attempt to convert any and all non-Christians and other non-believers, is slapped down and decried as un-American, undemocratic oppression and persecution (Hitler used the same tactic against the Jews).  News flash, lovey, it is not un-American or un-patriotic to defend our own beliefs and way of life from an attack by the right.  Shameless attempts to convert others constitute an attack.

Most of us also believe in more than ourselves.  We have a moral compass and know the difference between right and wrong without religion at the core of our motives. She paints us as selfish, immoral, shallow and closed minded.  Asking questions is not evidence of closed mindedness but she obviously feels insecure in her  ‘faith’ to feel so threatened by questions and other statements of fact made by free-thinkers.

I’m not getting onto the whole Jedi thing as it hurts just trying to think down to her level on this point.  The fatuousness of that statement goes beyond stupidity.  I think she might find that people listen to the views of Liberal and rational adults because, for the most part, they are inclusive, not oppressive and do not advocate either forcing or preventing others from participate in activities they disagree with.  The key word there is participate. We do not believe that another person has the right to decide how another person must live their lives so have no intention of banning Christians from their belief in God.  Force and manipulation are NOT our way. What atheists and agnostics want is to be allowed to live our lives without having Christian dogma forced on us and be expected to put up with it and without having the lie ‘Christians are being persecuted’ waved at us every time we object to something.

Oh I know many will have a hundred answers to that question; most of which focus on how wrong I am or how hypocritical I am because I am a Christian. Do me a favor and spare me the “You suck and here’s why” speech. Before those people jump to any conclusions, just know I don’t assume that Christianity is the only religion known to man. I don’t assume that everyone has to follow the Christian faith to a T in order to be saved. If that were true I’d definitely go straight to hell.

She is wrong and hypocritical but this is not BECAUSE she is a Christian.  She has made it very clear that she is unwilling to listen to anything atheists have to say and unfortunately there is no cure for that form of wilful ignorance. I may be mistaken but I am detecting some pride and a suggestion that there is virtue in her blind faith in the absurd. I will not spare her any sympathy because her hate-filled rants deserve no such consideration. Nobody has implied that she is unaware of other faiths and her position on this subject is such that no amount of rationality will ever make her see sense because she is determined to play the victim while turning reality on its head to fit around her delusions.  Had she a reasonable or rational thought in her head she would see how her flimsy argument contradicts itself.  The only way that nobody would ever question her after putting herself forward (as I am sure is the case if the content of her blog is anything to go by)  is if everybody were to just lie down and be converted to her brand of Christianity like good little sheeple. Maybe, if she actually knew when to shut up and  listen to what other people had to say, rather than comparing it with any fantasy she currently has running through her head, she might possibly learn something.  I will also add that her writing style addresses an outside audience of non-believers so as it is clearly directed at me I have no reservation in responding.  I encourage others to do so too.

I believe in forgiveness and that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. That He came to this earth to die for MY sins and yours. If you don’t believe that…that is between you and God.  I don’t seek to judge, that’s not my job. I don’t seek out non-believers and scrutinize their way of life. My beliefs have shown me that, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23 Just because I believe I am right, doesn’t make me ignorant or close minded to another person’s point of view. It just means I believe in God. As a Christian, I must have faith that Jesus Christ is the son of God or else I’m going to hell. And Muslims have to believe that they are right. And the Jewish faith must believe they’re right. There are major consequences, for any religion, if you don’t believe you are right. So don’t think for a second that Christians are the only people who think their religion is true. And we definitely are not the alone in speaking our minds. It’s just when we do speak up, some people tend to shut down and refuse to have an open mind.

Good for her.  That belief is her choice. Again she is lying to herself as well as her audience as she DOES seek out non-believers but  instead of preaching what she clearly thinks is profound observations of non-believers to non-believers, she is sharing her ignorance. I wonder where she acquired these misconceived attitudes about non-believers.  I struggle to understand why she thinks a rational and sane individual would even attempt to hold a debate about sin with a being they don’t believe in.  Her statement about scrutinising our way of life is also contradicted later on, but I digress. She states that her beliefs have confirmed that a passage in her committee written, racist, slavery endorsing, misogynistic, bible is true.  Another circular argument of ‘I say such and such is true because I already believe it is and the bible says it is‘  Am I alone in seeing the madness of this precept?

Believing something is real, does not make it real.  I could tell you that the sky is orange and for all that I believe it, will not make it actually true.  The assertion that god and hell must exist because people believe they do is childish at best, and moronic at worst.  It does not change the fact that all religions are one part wishful thinking to two parts ignorance and superstition.  She assures us that they must believe and behave the way they do or they will suffer dire consequences which is why we must just put up with their dictatorial demands.  I will add here, as I have done many times before, that the mercenary attitude of only being moral or good in hope of reward or for fear of punishment is by no means, admirable behaviour.  Of course religious people think they are right.  It is this certainty which has led to so much bloodshed and it would not be religion with out it.  Our willingness to question, examine solid observable and testable evidence, and change our minds when proven wrong is what puts the lie to her accusation of closed mindedness.  What she objects to is that we will not allow ourselves to be indoctrinated on the say-so of another.

Now, I will admit there are Christian extremists out there who blow up abortion buildings and condemn homosexuals…but that same extreme behavior is modeled through some Muslims as well. Except they don’t blow up abortion buildings…they take guns to work at an Army base and murder 14 soldiers, they fly planes into buildings and kill hundreds of thousands of Americans. But, no one today will group them with the entire Muslim faith, as they shouldn’t. I agree that those are extreme situations that may not be directly related to every Muslim’s way of thinking. But why is it that a few Christians step out of line and the nation goes up in arms. I am not diminishing a Christian extremist’s behavior, by all means arrest them and put them behind bars if they break the law. But don’t believe that one bad apple has spoiled the whole basket.

An admission that she promptly steps away from is hardly an admission.  She is very fast to spread the blame about isn’t she.  Such reflexes.  People DO condemn Muslims on the actions of a handful.  The Muslim community are by no means exempt for the collective blame for atrocities in the name of Allah. And the reason they share collective blame for atrocities committed in the name of their faith?  Because the Muslim community only shows collective outrage when they feel that they have been insulted. They are no better than the Christian community but nor are they any worse.  The Christian Community is no less guilty of trying to force their delusions of choice on the rest of us than the Muslim community is of honour killings, stoning rape victims to death and hanging homosexuals.  In the case of Christians forcing their ideals on non believers, I am yet to hear of a right wing Christian actually defend the rights of a liberal non-believer to chose their own way of life.

The extreme behavior is not really what I want to address. I want to focus on the Christian at your work place or at school who loves to talk about God and wants to shine their little light all over. Stop persecuting them!!!!! Not to get all PSA on you, but if you see a Christian in your office, don’t smash their spirit…treat them just as you would treat your friend. They are not your enemy! They aren’t actively seeking you out to criticize you, honest. When I tell people I am a Christian, for the most part people don’t really respond. Which in itself is a disappointment, but every once in a while I’ll get someone who will do anything and everything to make me insecure in my faith. Why is that?! And why is it that some will simply turn their ears off and change the subject? Are they unable to have a conversation about Christianity without yelling and screaming? Or maybe they just don’t care…

NOBODY IS PERSECUTING YOU, YOU STUPID WOMAN!!! The workplace is not the place for religion any more than a school is.  As far as I am concerned you are paid to do a job, not discuss, theology.  If you have the time to talk about your religion at work then you obviously have not got enough work to do and you are talking yourself out of a job.  You have every right to chatter away about what ever you like but you do not have the right to force people to listen (unless you plan on returning the favour, which I very much doubt).  I have religious friends but I respect them so I do not make them listen to me talk about my-lack of faith all the time and they respect me enough NOT to bore me to death with arguments that have been disproved a thousand times and more.  We actually have OTHER things to talk about.

This isn’t just about religion either. Liberals can shout their beliefs from the mountain tops…and rarely someone will challenge them when they talk about a woman’s right to kill…I mean choose. But if a Christian voices their opinion about a fetus’ right to live, all hell comes crashing down on them. I’m sure all of us have had firsthand experience with this, on more than one occasion, and I know people are merciless when it comes to “proving you wrong.” I challenge the readers to find me one media outlet besides the silver FOX news that challenges liberals, environmentalists, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindu’s, Atheists or any other belief, the way they challenge Christians. A great example to further my point stems from last week. Televangelist Pat Robertson blamed the Haitians for the deadly earthquake. That was all over the news like white on rice. People were outraged by this, as they should be, but the media turned it into this monster of a deal. None of those networks give a flying squirrel about what Pat says any other day of the week, so why should this be any different. He’s done a lot of great things for people, but he says this one thing and all of a sudden he’s Hitler. People make mistakes. Christians make mistakes. There’s no need to broadcast our every wrong move, unless you are willing to broadcast our every right move. That’s right…we do great things too.

When did you ever hear of a liberal shouting about anything wasn’t defending the rights of another party (or our own) being violated by somebody else.  A woman’s body is their own affair and not every non-believer is pro abortion. It is none of anybody else’s business.  Isn’t the very idea of an aggressive Buddhist a bit of an oxymoron?  (It’s a bit like the vandalism of, or declaring war on against abstract nouns.)  Having never knowingly met a Buddhist, I would say they have less that warrants a challenge than the ever-so-sensitive Christians. I have also never had a member of the Jewish community attempt to convert me.  From what I have learned, it is not something that is easy to do and you have to approach them WITHOUT coercion from another party. When have we ever experienced Hindus or Sikhs publicly trying to ban the sale or production of beef products, or force their world-view into schools?  There has only one Sikh protest that I can remember about objections to a theatrical production and another to petition Downing Street to oppose the death penalty in Dubai. Mr Robertson would have been condemned for his hate filled and unsympathetic assertion that the Haitian earthquake was the fault of the people who lived there no matter what his personal religious beliefs might have been.  What I doubt is that he would have said it at all were it not for his religion.  The reason nobody normally cares about what he says is because he is an aid to the perpetuation of irrelevance.  I wonder what he has really DONE for people that didn’t involve just sitting and wishing that things will get better?  If you remember, the Iranian leader later asserted that immodestly dressed women were the cause of earthquakes.  Again with the self-promotion of ‘great things’, but you have already said you only act to please God so why should we be thankful for, or acknowledging of, mercenary acts?

I’d also like to address the Christians out there who maybe have hurt some people along their journey, and of course I’m talking to myself too. I wouldn’t be a Christian if I didn’t address my own lifestyle. If we are ever going to save people and bring them to the Lord, condemnation and hate isn’t going to help. I heard a joke the other day, “Going to church makes you no more of a Christian than standing in a garage makes you a car.” Meaning going through the motions of a Christian doesn’t necessarily make you a better Christian or a better person. It’s all about how others see your faith. We may be the only bible they ever read. So we need to be more helpful than hurtful, more understanding than unkind. If someone doesn’t do what you think is right, let it be known in a way that is pleasing to the Lord. If people are unresponsive to your efforts, all you do is pray for them. Don’t judge them, pray for them and pray for yourself.

The first person to look at should be herself.  There is no doubt in the matter. At some time in our lives we have all been offended by some one or other over a difference of opinion.  Sometimes the dispute is resolved and other times it is not but we do not often make assumptions about their whole way of life based upon the single issue.  It is not for others to decide who should believe what.  She takes it upon herself here to decide she has not only the right but duty to ‘save’ people.  She has proven here that while she might not show (she makes a poor show of hiding it) her own disdain for the rights of non-believers she certainly feels it.  If I saw that this woman’s faith was truly a private matter and she allowed others their own lives and own decisions, as she so vehemently demands for herself, then she would have nothing to shout about.  However, she does not.  She openly displays her disgust that non-believers share the same rights to express ideas contrary to her own.  She is comfortable with coercion and manipulation and seems completely unaware of how her open statement of aiming to convert as many non-believers as possible, regardless of their own personal ideas, can be at all objectionable to others.  I really hope she finds this and reads how ridiculous she seems to rational adults.

Many have told me that they have been wronged by a Christian, and that is why they disrespect them. If you have been wronged by a Christian, and that has led you to treat them with a negative attitude, I am truly sorry. No Christian should ever make another person feel ashamed. As a Christian, I know that we can be judgmental and rude and downright mean sometimes…but please remember we’re not perfect.

I don’t disrespect Christians on speck.  Those I lack respect for are those like Miss Satterfield and her ilk, who are driven to outright indignation when the rights of others to not have Christianity forced on them, prevent them from acting as they please.  How can she not see why?  I would say that NOBODY should ever make another feel ashamed.  I am lucky that I have nothing to be ashamed of so as to deliver any ammunition.  I have never felt ashamed of my non-belief and I am perfectly happy in my life.  I am married, for the second time, to a wonderful husband who supports and encourages me and we have a beautiful son so what have I to fret about?

That’s my dose of honesty this week, Christians aren’t perfect…no one should expect us to be perfect. And just because we make mistakes, doesn’t make us the enemy, it doesn’t make us crazy, it makes us human. Just like you. The only difference is, we’ve found forgiveness…have you? I want to encourage everyone to investigate Christianity. I’m not talking about Catholics and Protestants…strip all of that away and just read up on the foundations of Christianity and really read the bible. Don’t read it with the intent to prove someone wrong, but read with an open heart. I think you’ll be surprised; there is more peace within those pages than you could ever imagine. For those who are now going to slaughter me in the comment section below, this blog isn’t a judgment…just a suggestion to help us understand each other a little more.

I worry that she really does think that this bile is ‘honesty’.  It’s a sad fact that she will not be the only one who believes that an individual or group, who already have an elevated position in both society and in law, are being ‘oppressed’ by the mere fact that others have differing opinions and wish to be left alone to live their lives without having religion foisted upon us. Even if we only went along (and the very idea is appalling) it would mean sacrificing our integrity by lying to ourselves and others.  That may be satisfactory to Miss Satterfield, but it is not to me and I am sure it is not to others.  I would no sooner teach my son to lie or cheat than I would teach him to fake a belief to suit another’s feelings.

Nobody expects anybody to be perfect. Nobody views Christians as an ‘enemies’ until their lofty (and I use the word in it’s loosest possible sense) attitudes. The views expressed in her blog are but a sample of the couched bigotry exhibited on a daily basis by the religious right-wing.  The same people who add insult to injury when they claim that THEY are being persecuted for not being allowed to run rough-shot over the rest of us or dictate how we live our lives.

Source

How to convert an Atheist…(Go on and try it!)


The below videos are ones I found on Youtube (FightingAtheist).  They lay out precisely what is required in order to prove the truth in any given religion.

“I have yet to meet a theist who would acknowledge even the possibility that his belief was in error. Many theists, by their own admission, structure their beliefs so that no evidence could disprove them…Fundamentalists very frequently claim that we have hardened hearts, we are dogmatic and irrational, and that we reject God based on preconceived bias. Such claims result from psychological projection. Incapable of coping with the fact that there are some people who genuinely do not believe in their god, these theists simply deny that such people exist, and instead insist that everyone thinks the same way they do…”

The Convincing Arguments.

  1. Verified, specific prophecies that could not have been contrived in any way.
  2. Scientific knowledge in holy books that was not available at the time.


Circumstantial Yet Not Completely Convincing Evidence.

  1. A genuinely flawless and consistent holy book.
  2. A religion without internal disputes or factions.
  3. A religion whose followers have never committed or taken part in any atrocities.

The Unconvincing Arguments.

  1. Speaking in tongues or other pseudo-miracles.
  2. Seeing the Virgin Mary in a water stain or Mother Teresa in a piece of pastry.
  3. Faith healing or people being “slain in the Spirit” and toppling over.
  4. People’s conversion stories.
  5. Any subjective experience.
  6. The Bible Code or other numerological feats.
  7. Creationism of any sort.

New post – The Mythological Insignificance of Hell.


Please follow this link to view the post.

Satan is a Hebrew word meaning adversary and the character of the devil and hell as a place of torment and punishment is a culmination of various cultural imaginations…