A PLEASANT EXCHANGE WITH A HELPFUL YOUNG CATHOLIC

The most "patently absurd" faith displayed here is your own faith that a middle aged, Internet frequenting, cynical marathoner has answers that Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, St. Maximilian Kolbe, and a gargutuan chunk of humanity for the past 2,000 years has lacked. Your obsessive preoccupation with God for, in your view, not existing confirms only the existence of certain bitterly illogical trains of thought. It seems you think that if you coin a sufficient number of pejorative phrases in reference to God, you'll assume the right. I guarantee you that when you pass, you are in for a marvelous surprise.

By x, at June 04, 2005 7:44 PM

The most "patently absurd" faith displayed here is your own faith that a middle aged, Internet frequenting, cynical 2:24 marathoner has answers that Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, St. Maximilian Kolbe, and a gargutuan chunk of humanity for the past 2,000 years has lacked.

No, Michael, they've had the answers; they've either been barred from seeing them owing to their own brainwashings as children or they've chosen to ignore them. By the way, the tactics you have just tried to employ -- the "argument from authority" and the "ad hominem attack" -- are dismal failures, and as a newly minted high-school graduate perhaps you're on the cusp of discovering why.

As an aside, even though 35 may seem like "middle aged" to someone barely half that, I'd think that a presumably two-legged lad who ran all of 18:20 at his state championship cross-country meet would be careful about casting aspersions on others' race times.

Your obsessive preoccupation with God for, in your view, not existing confirms only the existence of certain bitterly illogical trains of thought.

Well, I don't quite see how any alleged train of thought is "confirmed" by any supposed preoccupation; assuming you're not just, oh, lashing out blindly, you'll have to connect the dots for me. And while you're at it, explain how laughing off the triune God idea makes one "bitter"; personally I think believing from a young age your entire existence lies in the hands of a being who would gladly burn you for all time unless you kiss his never-appearing, inert ass is far more cynical, but then I'm obviously not as smart as you.

Regardless, your choice of words is interesting given that nine months ago, you referred to yourself as a "one-time visitor" (after already repeatedly visiting and then swearing off this blog at least once, actually) yet have continued to read this board with unfailing regularity. What was that about an obsessive preoccupation?

Also, since you mentioned logic and can't help but read this board almost daily, go ahead explain how your omniscient, omnipotent skygod concept meshes with any known logical framework.

It seems you think that if you coin a sufficient number of pejorative phrases in reference to God, you'll assume the right.

No, I "assume the right" on the basis of ordinary reasoning skills. The pejorative phrases are dressing and are solely attributable to the presence of Godidiots who -- despite having nothing on their side except propaganda, a couple millennia of imposing their twisted will and faery tales on new generations of malleable minds, and idle threats -- continue to flail around squint-eyed and angry whenever someone impugns their silly dogma.

I guarantee you that when you pass, you are in for a marvelous surprise.

Ah, you "guarantee" it. Well, now I'm convinced!

Isn't it beautiful how faith works, Michael? Having nothing to counter with other than "nyah nyah nyah!" you can console yourself with the idea that I'll suffer for all eternity for maligning the phantasm at which you fling mindless prayers.

I understand that a chunk of your brain is effectively gone thanks to the religious byrus and that you really have no choice but to react the way you do, but I see no reason to soft-pedal yammerheads like you even if you're not even 20. Best of luck getting things squared away in the future, but I assure you it'll take some serious work.

By Beaming Visionary, at June 04, 2005 9:33 PM

“No, Michael, they've had the answers; they've either been barred from seeing them owing to their own brainwashings as children or they've chosen to ignore them. By the way, the tactics you have just tried to employ -- the "argument from authority" and the "ad hominem attack" -- are dismal failures, and as a newly minted high-school graduate perhaps you're on the cusp of discovering why.”

It never ceases to amaze the objective bystander, or even the interested bystander, how someone so full of righteous indignation could possibly refer to someone like Karol Wojtyla (Pope John Paul II) as “brainwashed.” THAT is a seriously flawed track of reasoning. Amusingly, you dismiss ad hominem attack as a form of invalid argument, then proceed to attempt to shred me with your own carefully constructed ad hominem attacks! There’s a word for that; it starts with “h” and ends in “-ypocrisy.”

As an aside, do not all logicians or debaters use arguments from authority? Who is the authority behind your atheism? Yourself?

“As an aside, even though 35 may seem like "middle aged" to someone barely half that, I'd think that a presumably two-legged lad who ran all of 18:20 at his state championship cross-country meet would be careful about casting aspersions on others' race times.”

This is, as they say, so delicious it must be fattening.

I do not know your age, true; one seems to toss out these phrases, as I’m sure you’re all too familiar with. As for this latter nonsense about my times, only a miserably insecure human being would throw out that type of garbage and expect it to convey comprehensible points. I am not exactly sure how you obtained my name, or my times (I hope the idea of you doing a Google search to discredit me appears as pathetic to you as it does to me), but it seems you would be able to understand that the time does not always reveal the runner. For the record, high school has tallied the following for me: one avulsion fracture of the cuboid, 1st met. stress fracture, 5th met. stress fracture, talus tendonitis, Achilles tendonitis, peroneal tendonitis, iliac crest strain twice, gluteus medius syndrome, piriformis syndrome, 5th met. tendonitis 3 times, and calcaneal marrow edema.

Some of those cross-country races were run with fractured bones. I’d love to see how you would race dealing with the above list of mishaps. I feel fairly confident that, were you placed in the same situation, you would not do much better.

“Well, I don't quite see how any alleged train of thought is "confirmed" by any supposed preoccupation; assuming you're not just, oh, lashing out blindly, you'll have to connect the dots for me. And while you're at it, explain how laughing off the triume God idea makes one "bitter"; personally I think believing from a young age your entire existence lies in the hands of a being who would gladly burn you for all time unless you kiss his never-appearing, inert ass is far more cynical, but then I'm obviously not as smart as you.”

Ah, how refreshingly…repetitive. Do you type out a whole bunch of pejoratives beforehand and pick and choose as they fit? A little “never appearing a—” here, some “brainwashed idiots” there; why, you’ve coined you own set of atheistic go-to phrases!

In addition, that last summation of your “philosophy” regarding knowledge of God (not belief; there is no uncertainty involved) easily encompasses the most generally absurd, most ridiculously illogical, and indeed, most revealingly bitter tidbit of any I have yet seen.

“Regardless, your choice of words is interesting given that nine months ago, you referred to yourself as a "one-time visitor" (after already repeatedly visiting and then swearing off Cognitive Emesis at least once, actually) yet have continued to read this board with unfailing regularity. What was that about an obsessive preoccupation?”

No obsessive preoccupation; I read occasionally more out of boredom (not being able to run with one of those aforementioned injuries). I assure you, your site is not something I pore over. Actually, the suggestion of that is comical, as are the lengths to which you have gone in playing with your IP counter to ascertain this secret information, which you release with far too much gravity for such an insignificance.

“Also, since you mentioned logic and can't help but read this board almost daily, go ahead explain how your omniscient, omnipotent skygod concept meshes with any known logical framework.”

In a cause and effect series, of necessity there exists a first Uncaused Cause. The first Cause has no cause of Its own and acts out of no benefit to Itself in causing what follows. I know people who could quite easily dice apart your thinly veiled protestations that you rip off Carl Jung or Sigmund Freud; simply put, these hilariously ineffectual insult-fests (“skygod”?) do absolutely nothing to further your untenable position.

“No, I "assume the right" on the basis of ordinary reasoning skills. The pejorative phrases are dressing and are solely attributable to the presence of Godidiots who -- despite having nothing on their side except propaganda, a couple millennia of imposing their twisted will and faery tales on new generations of malleable minds, and idle threats -- continue to flail around squint-eyed and angry whenever someone impugns their silly dogma.”

This has nothing to do with malleable minds. If knowledge of God involved the malleability of someone’s mind, how would an apologist like C.S. Lewis exist? Indeed, Lewis’ mind was molded only by atheistic influences. The phrase could just as easily be twisted right around. As always, “ordinary reasoning skills” substitutes here most appropriately for “skewed, unsubstantiated, dubiously generated opinion.” “Godidiots”; you’ll excuse then, my newly coined phrase, “idiots who worship their own feeble intellects as the nearest evidence of omniscience.” It’s not quite as concise, but it gets the job done.

There is no propaganda involved, and to speak in this manner denotes only someone who has no concept, no familiarity with, and no knowledge of Catholic teaching.

“Ah, you "guarantee" it. Well, now I'm convinced!Isn't it beautiful how faith works, Michael? Having nothing to counter with other than "nyah nyah nyah!" you can console yourself with the idea that I'll suffer for all eternity for maligning the phantasm at which you fling mindless prayers. I understand that a chunk of your brain is effectively gone thanks to the religious byrus and that you really have no choice but to react the way you do, but I see no reason to soft-pedal yammerheads like you even if you're not even 20. Best of luck getting things squared away in the future, but I assure you it'll take some serious work.”

Actually, what sailed over your head and into the upper deck of Yankee stadium in your willingness to turn your own rant into a reply towards some schoolyard chiding was my point; I “guarantee” nothing about what happens to your soul. No human being has this knowledge, nor can claim to. My guarantee involves what is to come, not what is to happen to anyone. Keep reading and see if won’t permeate the stubborn barrier you’ve erected.

There is nothing “mindless” about my prayers, though it is little surprise that you would presume to put words in someone’s mouth again. If you think that my brain has been traumatized because I do not have my own website where I spend my time lambasting fat people and Christians, you are sadly, tragically mistaken. I, just as everyone, has a choice. This is what escapes you. To love God is to choose, and to choose you must have free will. You choose not; such is your prerogative. I assume your last missive not so subtly implies that I’ll need a good course in neo-Sartrean thought processes in order to “succeed” in the future. Regardless, I replied out of the normal passer-by irritation any such rant would incite; my mistake for reading the page. Hope you find something worthwhile in all that condemnation and ridicule of “Godidiots” as you call it.

By x, at June 06, 2005 11:49 PM

Well, "x," I shouldn't spend much time with this, as I don't regard these comment boxes as media for discourse even under optimal circumstances (i.e., when the other party is alert and conscious rather than deluded). Were I merciful, in fact, I would delete your comments altogether, but like Lot's daughters I have sort of a twisted sense of humor to go with my horny streak.

You're either shining me on or hapless beyond compare. I'll return to you a few of your own crippled serves, but will let others effect further damage, assuming anyone can be bothered.

Atheism (look that word up to assure yourself you know what it really means) doesn't require authority any more than does not believing the maniac on the corner who claims he was just delivered here from Endor in the Millennium Falcon. I've read a wide variety of things, but I don't gather catchphrases from Freud or Jung or anyone else. I realize the concept of thinking for oneself truly lies beyond the scope of your experience, but trust me, such things can and do occur in the unpolluted mind.

Atheism also doesn't require bitterness, and a moment's earnest thought should (but probably won't) convince you of this. I happen to enjoy my life, static and all. That I don't demand from some nonentity that I be made more comfortable later for suffering now is a relief, not a bane. That's another thing quite literally beyond your comprehension: Nonbelievers haven't rejected God, they're not angry at God -- these concepts simply do not apply. Through no doings of our own, some of us happen to have eluded the powerful religion byrus as children and simply recognize there is no need for God in any guise. For me to yell "God takes it in the ass and wears a tutu!" isn't a sacrilege; pointless, maybe, and perhaps rude in mixed company, but not worthy of special earthly or comsic sanction.

Atheists are normally blase about their own lack of investment in goofiness as well as others' enmracing of sane -- until a given political climate makes the whole shooting match all but impossible to ignore. Their irritation typically stems from watching simpering wingnuts like you fly off the handle and rail ad nauseam about invisible beasts, incomprehensibly inane "processes" like transubstatiation, dead men walking, and even more absurd things, all the while aiming (in the case of fundamentalists) to subvert numerous aspects of education, biomedical research, and society as whole for the sake of an ancient, artless agenda fomented by dweebs in funny costumes. Note that I don't hang out on Christian forums the way you keep washing up here like a venereal wart, and I spend a lot less time and energy than you'd think on this subject -- surely less time by far than you in your young life have wasted hanging out in pews or plunked on your knees babbling silently in an effort to establish contact with, in effect, Fozzie Bear. I'm also not nearly as bothered by challenges to my lack of a belief system as you are by the rightful mocking of your extant one.

These are not meant to be zingers -- get that idea out of your head. They are illustrative, but not to those whose eyes are welded shut, so I won't blink when you see nothing but high-powered insults.

If knowledge of God involved the malleability of someone’s mind, how would an apologist like C.S. Lewis exist?

This would be the most inept syllogism in the world were it structured correctly. That Lewis or any other Christian theist exists or has existed implies...what? (Please don't actually try to answer that.)

I am, however, impressed that you or anyone can speak so confidently of knowing God exists when there is no way this is even possible. You take limitless umbrage at my characterizations of religious folk, yet you do absolutely nothing to convince me otherwise except bitch when it would clearly be in your utmost interest to do so, since that would shut me up once and for all and nothing, it seems, would warm your loins more.

I am not cruel and I am only mildly interested in tilting at windmills for the sake of putting the purulent by-products of your warped mind on display for others' enjoyment, so I am not going to ask you for evidence (which differs from proof, by the way) of this heavenly motherfucker who does all sorts of happy crappy for those who lick his toejam. The only thing that adds up is that if there were actually a God, what with that litany of injuries He sure as hell wouldn't want you to be a distance runner. But if He won't advise you not to race on a friggin' stress fracture in response to your prayers, I will.

Now go ahead and fulfill your duty -- sneer at my choice of words as if anyone's mere use of them legislates them out of applicability; whinny and hoot at my blasphemous barbs, since focusing on these relieves you of having to propose anything sensible in favor of whatever lost cause yo aim to represent; and remind me that someday, someday, I'll get what's coming if I'm not careful. Too bad for your sense of justice that when it comes down to "judgment time," neither of us will be around to see, hear, feel or otherwise experience it.

By Beaming Visionary, at June 07, 2005 7:09 AM

On the whole, it isn’t worth picking through such a swamp of malicious and ridiculous exaggerations, lies, and complete untruths but for a few.

First, you contend that you lack any bitter feeling towards God. I know of no other group that devotes their time to maligning what, in its view, does not exist. I assure you, I certainly do not set aside a 15 minute period each day where I write all about those awful green mountain goblins, invent profanity-laced names for them, and generally lament how they do not exist. Yet, when you regard God on the same level as some fairy tale, to your detriment, your attempt to dismiss preoccupation with what ostensibly does not exist borders on—no, ACHIEVES, the absurd.

Regarding your gratuitous lashing of transubstantiation, you are clearly bereft of what this even means. Sorry to say, reading about your favorite “fairy tales” on some obscure Internet site devoted to heresy does not and has never qualified as “doing the research.” If you lack qualification to speak about these topics, how do you propose to reside in truth? Or perhaps you prefer ubiquitous relativism.

The next jab at Catholicism; “subversion of biomedical research, education, and society as a whole.” I wonder if you actually read what you write, so preposterously and bestially brainless are these rants. “Subversion” of medical research? Ah yes, I remember now. Yes, the Catholic Church is responsible for AIDS, diabetes, influenza, bubonic plague, and just about every other pestilence that has plagued mankind. After all, how can anyone accomplish medical progress when we have a church rooted in the maxim “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” That won’t do; it’s mere subversion of medical research because…sorry, here my sarcastic attempt to possibly ascertain the origin of this ridiculous train of thought ends. Actually, the Church pioneers programs in Africa to help those suffering with AIDS, is the world’s largest charity, and supports all manner of ETHICAL research with regard to such ventures as umbilical cord and adult stem cell research. I take it, of course, that you must be referring to an opposition to embryonic stem cell research as some hideous wrong against humanity. With your general disdain for the human race open like a book for all to read, I’m surprised you wouldn’t be pleased to see a few more expire. If, as I suspect, the “biomedical research” in question is indeed embryonic stem cell research, the point confirms your medical “knowledge” or lack thereof, a mind devoid of simple facts about gestation, fetology, and other prenatal factoids that anyone with a cerebral cortex functioning at 25% of its capabilities could pick up without undue difficulty. Medical ethics alone would suffice in dismissing the notions of “good” that come about with crimes like these. So I await your explanation of how the Church has suffocated biomedical research, perhaps with some more outrageous claims about how the Church sunk the Titanic, started the Cold War, and fomented Islamic revolution.The next, about suppression of education. Never mind that some of the top Catholic universities in the country are, well…Catholic. Never mind that the Jesuits are RENOWNED throughout the world for an immaculate treatment of education and the merits thereof. Never mind that some of the greatest scholars in the world (St. Augustine, St. Jerome, etc.) come from a basis of faith. Again, I imagine you refer here to evolution. Hopefully, the definition of simple scientific terms such as “hypothesis,” “theory,” “law,” “data,” and “model” reside somewhere in the festering piece of cheese you denote a “brain.” Regardless of the efficacy and/or validity of Darwin’s theory, it remains a theory. Personally, I see validity in some or most of its tenets; indeed, certain anthropological similarities between primates, for instance, and humans offer compelling evidence that an evolutionary process can indeed account for the difference. Here, you quite obviously and tragically confuse misguided “Bible Christians” with Catholics or Orthodox. The people in the south of the country who demand that the Bible be taught as scientific fact occupy a misguided realm of human thought. Your general animosity and willingness to lump everyone together, then, exposes nothing about Catholic detraction from education—a comical non-theory—but instead reveals only your careless mix-up of the facts.

I have wasted no time “babbling silently” to establish contact with some nebulous non-entity. The Entity I and others communicate with is very real. That He escapes the limits imposed by your 5 senses, or that you are eager to point to a large section of humanity’s common belief and offer “Brainwashed cretins!”, or that you confuse fallible human beings who misuse Truth with infallible merits of Truth itself, or that you delude yourself into believing—hey, at least you have some faith!—that you reside in some special realm of intelligence and intellectual superiority unfettered by “fantasies” because the idea of God inspires in you some visceral discomfort or notion of impossibility…all this is irrelevant. It establishes nothing more than an individual deficiency. It reflects nothing upon truth, only upon your failure to familiarize yourself with the explanations behind some of these seemingly fantastical concepts.

That the most scathing and compelling portion of your delirium verifies the REAL problem with Catholicism—“Ah, blast those dweebs in funny costumes”—speaks only further to your general confusion, inability to educate yourself about the topic, and the lip service you pay to being informed.

My C.S. Lewis reference, against which flew over your head like the midnight train to Nashville, regards his early life and his avowed atheism. I’m not surprised you lack acquaintance with the story; after all, it challenges the very “position” you hope to maintain.

My reference to the catalogue of running injuries was to point out an additional comical instance of the presumptuous garbage that litters your excuse for thought; I’ve shoveled tracks in 15 degree weather, vomited 15 times, then recovered and run 300m repeats with frozen capillaries in my hands which, upon thawing, exact such a vicious sensation that the most sadistic murderer would not wish such a fate on his most bitter enemy. Hill sprints shining my car headlights up pitch black streets in the 36 degree rain, 15 mile runs in 80 degree humidity and heat with mononucleosis, track workouts with the flu, races with stress fractures—I’ve done it. If you think this type of work merits 18:20 5,000 meter times and nothing more, you are sadly, sadly mistaken to fail to see the existence of extenuating circumstances.

I said nothing about your judgment or what will happen to you. My reference was to the existence of a judgment. I am surprised that even you think no order of justice exists, and that you will never need to answer for your wrongs or be rewarded for your merits. If—I allow the possibility for the sake of argument, not because it possesses even an inkling of truth—you are right, in 100 years our festering corpses will be digesting neatly in the fine tuned systems of some baser breed of insect.

If I am right, you will have a tremendous deal of explanation to convey upon your death. That is up to you, not me.

By x, at June 07, 2005 3:51 PM

At a minimum, Michael, consider eschewing metaphors altogether.

Despite your communication deficits, it is clear that your strategy here remains the same. Tabular form will suffice at this point.

1. Here is what you do:

a) Assure me I'm full of exaggerations and lies.
b) Assert that I am motivated by bitterness toward a nonentity, still as much a patent impossibility as it was yesterday. (I never said that Godidiots themselves were not annoying; many, including yourself, see throwing puerile and illogical shit-fits as a goal worthy of much expended verbiage, as this string of comments illustrates. Similarly, my reminding you that God is a lunatic scatophagic transvestite with tertiary syphilis would be not a swipe at "Him" but a swipe at you.)
c) Claim I am woefully misinformed when it comes to transubstantiation and other supernatural events.
d) Opine that my brain is [insert crude metaphor], that I am ignorant, that I am delerious, etc.
e) Unleash a flurry of straw men (e.g., effectively stating that I have argued that religious people have done humanity no service, that Catholics alone among faith-heads have impeded biomedical research, etc.).
f) Dispatch numerous errant assumptions (my sole source of knowledge is anti-religious Web sites; I am not medically literate; etc.). Considering you admitted to oopsing in this regard a few times already here, I'd think you'd be inclined to be more reserved.
g) Simultaneously denigrate both atheists and Southern Baptists ("The people in the south of the country who demand that the Bible be taught as scientific fact occupy a misguided realm of human thought"). That you can somehow fancy yourself more enlightened than both nonbelievers and other believers symbolizes the pinnacle of malignant self-righteousness that makes so many people scornful of byrus sufferers.
h) Categorically assign truth to numerous absurdites, including the following:
i) The efficacy of prayer.
ii) The existence of a Creator with the power to send people to "Hell."
iii) Transubstantiation.

2. With a particular eye on h) above, here is what you don't do:

a. Explain precisely where I stray from the truth. (Calling me uninformed, for example, doesn't cut it unless you offer evidence to the contrary.)
b. Give even a single reason why anyone should lend an ounce of credence to your bogeyman tales. In fact, you don't even try.
c. Explain precisely how you came to believe in this stuff. (You may lie at this point and claim it wasn't hammered into you when you were a defenseless toddler, but then I'm used to religious people's duplicity.)

If you cannot undertake any of the simple tasks in 2) above, kindly consider shutting the 'eck up and slinking into the shadows for your own good. Do you think you're going to change my mind? Do you get warm fuzzies reading this stuff from me? I'm curious as to how much more time you'll waste with this.

It is amazing -- and telling -- that I can point out to you exactly how you've screwed up throughout this exchange and yet you just go ahead and do it again anyway. You can yammer all day long about good and noble Catholic scientists, my allegedly flawed understanding of C.S. Lewis' life, and what a badass you are for doing repeats in the cold; you can even try like mad to convince yourself that I really am a genuine idiot. But none of these things changes or even addresses the central issue: the fact that your faith is a pile of myths. At the very least you should be able to understand why some people require more than the rotten fruits of others' programming in order to buy into faery tales that contradict the laws of nature, and that impugning people for relying on objective sensory and intellectual input is a pretty damned asinine way to go about things. I emphasize, however, that I understand why this is; were both of us to restrict ourselves here to dealing in facts or simply in observable phenomena, you would have been forced many paragraphs ago to abandon your futile quest at one-upmanship, revenge, or whatever it is you believe you are accomplishing here. Were it solely up to you to defend and support your faith it would have gone the way of the passenger pigeon well before the 20th century.

I'll give you credit for a single accurate statement: In 100 years we will indeed both be insect food -- nothing more, nothing less. (Well, I might be ashes.) The difference between us is that this bothers you whereas I accept it as part of the way of the world.

By Beaming Visionary, at June 07, 2005 11:30 PM

I'll give you credit for a single accurate statement: In 100 years we will indeed both be insect food -- nothing more, nothing less. (Well, I might be ashes.) The difference between us is that this bothers you whereas I accept it as part of the way of the world.

If you could read—rather than replaced what I wrote with what you want to see—you’d note that I said this would not happen. This scenario, because it does not exist for human souls, does not bother me because it does not happen. It’s difficult to be bothered by what doesn’t exist, which makes your entire worldview most ironic.

If you cannot undertake any of the simple tasks in 3) above, kindly consider shutting the 'eck up and slinking into the shadows for your own good. Do you think you're going to change my mind? Do you get warm fuzzies reading this stuff from me? I'm curious as to how much more time you'll waste with this.

Paradoxically, you’re the one who keeps this stuff up, gloats about it as though it remains some sort of victory for you (a dubious assertion), then complains when your belligerent nonsense elicits a reply. I especially enjoy your subtle threats—“slink into the shadows for your own good”—as though replying to your garbage attacks places the responder in imminent danger of…what?

It is amazing -- and telling -- that I can point out to you exactly how you've screwed up throughout this exchange and yet you just go ahead and do it again anyway.

It’s funny; precisely the same can be said of you.

You can yammer all day long about good and noble Catholic scientists, my allegedly flawed understanding of C.S. Lewis' life, and what a badass you are for doing repeats in the cold; you can even try like mad to convince yourself that I really am a genuine idiot. But none of these things changes or even addresses the central issue: the fact that your faith is a pile of myths.

If contradictions were worth money…you see where I’m going with this. I never said I was a tough guy for doing repeats in the cold; this was an aside retort to your blurting out—yet again—your deeply held convictions regarding things with which you have no familiarity. You initiated this line of comment with your unfounded swipes at my times, a blunder on your part that fails to account for extenuating circumstances. I could picture you berating Kenenisa Bekele for his Boston 3K loss based solely on the numbers on the screen, bypassing the extenuating circumstances, namely, miscounting the laps and grief incurred with the loss of a fiancée.

It’s also amusing that your unsubstantiated, unsupported opinion has morphed into “fact.” So, tell me, to employ your own device: where is your support for the contention that faith is “a pile of myths”? I await a meticulously crafted denunciation involving mythic depictions of ghosts, tooth fairies, and whatever new name you’ve deigned to assign to religious figures without ever actually presenting any backing to your wildly fantastical theories.

Atheism, beyond cavil, elicits more blind faith than any religion.

faery tales that contradict the laws of nature

Tossing out repetitive, unsupported flotsam is a hobby of yours, nicht?

impugning people for relying on objective sensory and intellectual input is a pretty damned asinine way to go about things

Wow. That’s my only reply for that one. Wow.

Certain levels of idiocy can be dealt with and corrected, but there comes a point when the moron trots out such a hilariously foolish and preposterously ridiculous fabrication that words do not adequately capture the tragic failure of reason.

were both of us to restrict ourselves here to dealing in facts or simply in observable phenomena, you would have been forced many paragraphs ago to abandon your futile quest at one-upmanship, revenge, or whatever it is you believe you are accomplishing here.

Oh no, there is plenty of observable phenomena if you’d been willing to look for and acknowledge it.

There are documented miracles out there, things which no scientist has ever or will ever be able to explain regarding religious phenomena. Things which even you could not dismiss with a wave of your bigoted digits.

Beyond that, though, your fixation on sensory perception confirms your myopic dependence on limited means of obtaining information; if the eyes, ears, mouth, hands, and nose were all we had to “observe” and learn with…there would be a marvelous dilemma in many spheres.

You requested instances of where you stray from the truth. Having offered concrete examples above, I propose a few more:

The existence of a Creator with the power to send people to "Hell."

Again (that seems a frequently repeated phrase here), if you had read what was written previously, repeatedly throwing out these types of fallacies would be superfluous. God sends no person to hell. He receives those who accept Him and to the rest, their own choices and decisions select their resting place. In your eagerness to assure your own “one-up-manship” (ironically, everything you accuse me of perpetrating you have ably demonstrated yourself quite capably of many times already), you missed this basic, essential fact.

You are tossing out something that is not true. Is that sufficiently concrete for you? Have you now grasped just one iota of your erroneous claims?

numerous absurdites, including the following:

i) The efficacy of prayer.

I’ll not divulge my personal experiences with prayer here, but suffice it to say that a staunch, avowed, and bitterly sarcastic atheist such as yourself remarking on the efficacy of prayer redeems your comedic talent, perhaps unbeknownst to yourself, as worthy of a slot on Comedy Central’s standup night. To be more explicit…exactly how is it that you feel qualified to remark on the efficacy of prayer?

Did you ask Santa for a toy at age 9, miss it at Christmas, and then swear off God forever?

That you can somehow fancy yourself more enlightened than both nonbelievers and other believers symbolizes the pinnacle of malignant self-righteousness that makes so many people scornful of byrus sufferers.

Yet once more, wrong. I never claimed superiority to anyone. An additional instance of your falsehoods and untruths supplanting what was actually said. And yet you deem it “fact.” That’s as concrete as it comes.

I referred to specific instances of Christians acting poorly and using their faith to do so, such as slave owners’ justification of slavery by an obscure and unrelated passage in Genesis. If this implies in some way that I am declaring myself superior to such people, I propose you enroll yourself in a Literary Interpretation class to brush up on reading comprehension.

Assert that I am motivated by bitterness toward a nonentity, still as much a patent impossibility as it was yesterday. (I never said that Godidiots themselves were not annoying; many, including yourself, see throwing puerile and illogical shit-fits as a goal worthy of much expended verbiage, as this string of comments illustrates. Similarly, my reminding you that God is a lunatic scatophagic transvestite with tertiary syphilis would be not a swipe at "Him" but a swipe at you.)

Do you ever run this stuff by people who know you? Seriously, do you slip casually into daily conversation your fantasies of syphilitic deities? The flurry of BITTER insults, execrations, imprecations, oaths, and attempts at humor directed by your malformed piehole offers no other explanation than BITTERNESS. Yet again and again and again, do you fancy yourself only a standup comedian lobbing out some one-liners about “Godiots,” “everyone’s favorite imaginary friend,” and “transvestite lunatics”? This is akin to someone waging a fierce name-calling campaign against Cambodian tree gnomes and their non-existent, albeit nefarious practices. If it doesn’t exist, how and why can you lambast it?

By x, at June 08, 2005 12:03 AM

This scenario, because it does not exist for human souls, does not bother me because it does not happen...There are documented miracles out there, things which no scientist has ever or will ever be able to explain regarding religious phenomena...God sends no person to hell. He receives those who accept Him and to the rest, their own choices and decisions select their resting place.

You refer to these and other ineffable by-products of faith as "facts." Do you even know what a "fact" is, Michael? Perhaps you truly believe that you have shown me to be in error somehow. You obviously subscribe to the idea that if you use ALL CAPS to type the word BITTER and use it frequently that it will apply. If these consoling measures -- along with sucking your thumb and imagining how great a runner you would have been had it not been for extenuating circumstances -- help get you through the night, great.

You initiated this line of comment with your unfounded swipes at my times, a blunder on your part that fails to account for extenuating circumstances. I could picture you berating Kenenisa Bekele for his Boston 3K loss...

Since you have a short memory (if you didn't, you would know how I identified you off the bat), I'll remind you that you initiated the slam-the-performances talk in your first crippled comment. And please avoid comparing yourself to Bekele or even to Sarah Bowman, oh crier of "relativist!"

"Where is your support for the contention that faith is “a pile of myths”? Atheism, beyond cavil, elicits more blind faith than any religion."

Outstanding. You are quite honestly mad. I will reiterate the obvious: There is nothing about not endorsing a Biblical god that contravenes everyday experience but much about the supposed characteristics of that god that opposes it. On the other hand, your godthing -- despite its apparent yen for submissive attention -- has never appeared to anyone, anywhere, at any time in human history (biased self-reports from goofballs like you about miracles and the alleged utility of prayer don't count) and religion's roots clearly lie in fulfilling a psychological, contemplative need.

But go ahead and the put the onus on proving a negative on me if this provides, in your mind, a clear path. And keep trotting out the trite "atheism is a faith!" canard. You've been programmed exceptionally well."

'...impugning people for relying on objective sensory and intellectual input is a pretty damned asinine way to go about things.'

Wow. That’s my only reply for that one. Wow.

This captures it all. It amazes you that people deign to rely on sight, hearing, touch, etc. and their natural extensions (investigation, experimentation, reason, and so on) rather than faith that is literally blind.

I didn't say that intuition is dispensable, but religion allows for no such genuine freedom of spiritual exploration: It is conditional. Meditation, however, need not involve the solicitation of an imaginary overlord.

Apparently you are not only brainwashed but an idiot as well, never a pleasant combination. Have your god, lad, but it is what it is (or isn't, of course). I'm not out to convert a hijacked mind back to its native state; I don't fancy myself that powerful and in fact don't care what you or anyone has to say, think or believe as long as such claptrap doesn't affect my life.

You also have yet to figure out that every untoward statement about your godthing is not a slap at the godthing, it is a dig at you, one guaranteed to set you off. Did you come equipped with an "off" button too?

Anyway, you can continue chiming in with the same hollow accusations and laughable stipulations for as long as your ire compels you to do so even as the post to which these apply scrolls off the page. In fact, your anger suggests in a seemingly paradoxical way that you are in fact conflicted about your faith -- otherwise, why would you care so much what an alleged ignoramus thinks? That being the case, there may be partial hope for your brain yet, although baseline workaday stupidity is not amenable to therapeutic intervention at this point.

Have a great day!

By Beaming Visionary, at June 08, 2005 9:22 AM
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