Chamblee54

Religion And Perfume

Posted in GSU photo archive, Religion by chamblee54 on August 17, 2022

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Religion and perfume have several things in common. They are both fun to smell, but dangerous to swallow. A tasteful drop behind the ear is pleasant. Too much, and you will run from the room gasping for breath. Both are cheap products, sold in a fancy bottle, at a steep markup.

Before easy access to water, people did not bathe every day. To cover up the aroma of human existence, many used fragrances. This too is similar to the function of religion.

Perfume has been considered a feminine product. In a clever marketing move, a masculine scent was called cologne, and sold to men. Religion is gross to many people, so it is sold as faith.

Smell is a driving force in animal behavior. Ants used smell to communicate, and perform feats in numbers which would be impossible as individuals. Smells go directly to the brain, without filtering and processing like sounds, sights, and tastes. Religion is the emotional equivalent of odors. This is a repost. Pictures are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

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One History Of Religion

Posted in Georgia History, GSU photo archive, Religion by chamblee54 on August 7, 2022

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I was a southern baptist all my life. Arguably, I became a baptist when my mother converted in 1938, but really didn’t get with the program until I was born in 1954. The story is that Daddy called the choir director at six in the morning to sign me up.

First Baptist in Atlanta was a big church on Peachtree street, about a mile north of downtown. (A few years ago, they sold the land to a developer, and moved to the suburbs. I was working a block away when they tore down the building, and got some chips of brick as a souvenir.) I sang in the “cherub” choir. This was quite an experience when we performed in front of a full house. I have good memories of Sunday school, vacation bible school, and the choir program.

One thing I did not like, even at that young age, was the preacher. He was a greasy haired man who shouted a lot, and had a mean streak. Years later, I heard persistent rumors that he was gay. (I should note that this is not Charles Stanley. It is the man who preceded him.) One Sunday, we were watching him preach, and he shouted, “this is the word of G-d”. He then waved a Bible in the air, and slammed it into the pulpit. I thought, if that is the word of G-d, maybe he shouldn’t slam it down like that.

In 1962, mom and dad decided to move to a church closer to home. I liked Briarcliff Baptist. About this time, I first heard about being “saved from sin”, and thought it was a pretty cool idea. I also was in the cub scouts, and since their meetings were the same day as choir practice, I quit the choir. I attended church regularly the next few years, but never did join the church, and get baptized. The custom of pressuring children to make a “commitment of faith”, and get baptized, reflects poorly on Jesus. There are some other family issues that came up about this time. They are too personal to get into here, but they affected my attitude towards the church.

After a while, I was 17 years old, and working in a restaurant that was open until 1am on Saturday night. I decided one Sunday that I didn’t want to get up for church. I have only been back to that building once in the intervening 50 years. This is a repost, with pictures from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

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Annabelle

Posted in GSU photo archive, Music, Religion by chamblee54 on July 16, 2022

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Annabelle is a song by Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. It is quite lovely. Annabelle is the daughter, and the one bright spot in a hard life. This life of toil lasts until we “go to Jesus.”

PG has had a tough time with Jesus. Rudeness, disrespect, verbal abuse, and humiliation have been landmarks on the journey. When you don’t agree with the plan for life after death, you wonder if the bad parts of Jesus are worth it. To PG, the negatives overwhelmingly outweigh the positives. Just hearing a passing reference to Jesus can set him to brooding.

This morning, PG wondered if it was always going to be like this. When people talk/sing/act out for Jesus, is it always going to remind him of the pain? The Jesus worshipers have so much fun making noise, that they scarcely notice the discomfort of others. They usually don’t care.

PG has found Jesus, in the words and deeds of his believers. It has been one of the worst experiences he has known. When you decide that Jesus was killed for being a trouble maker, and his death has nothing to do with what happens to you when you die … it takes away the justification for the abuse. Maybe one day there will be no Jesus, and PG will know peace.

This is a repost. Pictures from The Library of Congress.

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The Six G-ds of Christianity

Posted in Library of Congress, Religion by chamblee54 on June 9, 2022





There is a discussion brewing in the Jesus Worship blogosphere on the question of “Is Christianity really monotheistic ”. This is in response to a post, on the subject of the unquestioning Christian .

There is a “motivational” poster, with the headline “Ten signs you are an unquestioning Christian”. One of these (either number one or ten) deals with monotheism. To wit: “You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of G-ds claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of your G-d.” Some writers are promising/threatening to write about all ten of these arguments, and the feature on monotheism is the first.

PG is a recovering Baptist, who is severely alienated from Jesus. He does suspect that there is a G-d, and is in no way an “atheist”. The tracts linked to above tend to break down the discussion to atheists vs. christians, which is highly misleading.

PG has been knocking around for some time the idea of a post about the six G-ds of Jesus Worshipers. The appearance of this series…at blogs that ban PG from commenting…has spurred him into action. Whether or not there will be more comments (from PG) remains to be seen.

Christianity claims to be a monotheistic religion. This means, there is only one G-d. In contrast, the Romans and Greeks had G-ds and G-ddesses galore, and the Hindus have literally millions of deities. In what was claimed by some as an advancement, the Jews worshiped one G-d. (Zoraroastrians are said to be monotheistic, and did it before the Jews. There may be others.)

One of the sacred tracts of Judaism and Christianity is the ten commandments . The first three relate to the concept of monotheism, and the proper way to talk about G-d.

1-Thou shalt have no other G-ds before me.
2-Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy G-d am a jealous G-d, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
3-Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy G-d in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

As a side note, PG has heard something about the use of Lord as a name for G-d. The riff is that “Lord” was an expression for an English nobleman. When the Bible was translated by James I, his workers used the L word as a synonym for G-d. The words for G-d in the Greek and Hebrew texts that comprised the Bible do not translate as Lord…that word was inserted by the anglocentric workers of James I. This is something that PG read in a book by Tom Robbins, and has no other source for. It may, or may not be true. If it is, then it just might be a violation of the third commandment.

Getting back to monotheism, does Christianity live up to the first commandment? This may seem to be a silly question when you consider the concept of the trinity. At some point in the early days of Jesus Worship, a decision was made to split G-d into three parts. We now had the father, the son, and the holy ghost. (Which makes for a neat blessing…the father the son the holy ghost, whoever eats fastest gets the most) The first commandment is still in effect, but, well, you just have to understand. The Jews continued to worship one G-d, and when Mohammed started his franchise, he changed the name to Allah. In that version, there is no G-d but Allah, and Mohammed is his messenger.

Meanwhile, the Jesus Worshipers were good at converting and reproducing, and soon had a very popular religion. But was it one G-d only? The faith had a book of ancient texts that they call “the word of G-d”. The fact that it was written, copied, edited and translated by man did not stop folks. The first commandment would seem to prohibit this custom, but, you just have to believe.

PG is willing to concede the point that he doesn’t understand the concept of the Trinity. He thinks it is a concoction of the Council of Nicea, and a violation of the first commandment. This is something that seems to happen a lot with Christianity…to proclaim one thing as a rule, to apparently violate that rule, but have a clever explanation that few seem to understand.





This does not explain the other G-ds of Christianity. For this discussion, we will focus on three…the Bible, Satan, and Salvation.

The Catholic Church had a conference to establish a consistent canon for their church. This conference became known as the Council of Nicea. (This conference is where the concept of the Triune G-d was formulated.) The texts in use by the church at the time were collected in one book. Some texts were not used, and there is a good possibility that the texts that were used were edited. This committee effort became known as the Bible.

PG got into a twitter discussion recently. It turns out that PG does not know much about the Council of Nicea. There were other meetings at this time, and after a while a standardized canon was established for the Christian religion. Few doubt that the Bible was curated by man.

During the protestant reformation, the new churches needed a source for their authority over the people. It was during this time that the concept of the Bible as the “Word of G-d” became known. This in effect made a G-d out of a book. This is in direct defiance of the First Commandment, which teaches to have no other G-d before you.

The book has been interpreted into many languages, and the interpretations have been interpreted. The star of the New Testament, Jesus, spoke Aramaic. His words were recorded, in Greek, many years after he *died*. Any quote from Jesus has been translated at least twice. This is from texts that were written many years after he lived. And yet, people talk about what Jesus taught, and have confidence, that they know what they are talking about. (The only things we know about Jesus is what the Council of Nicea chose to tell us.)

At some point, the idea began to float around that the Bible was not only the word of G-d, but that it was inerrant…that is, without errors. This would presume that no body in the chain of production made a mistake. This includes a scribe copying a text, and a Catholic editor assembling a canon. Nobody translating ancient languages, from ragged source materials, made a mistake. The people who make this claim seem to assume that they have a perfect understanding of this text. Is it a coincidence that the spell check suggestion for inerrant is ignorant?

This one is too blatant to let slide. When you declare a text to be the “word of G-d”, you are making a G-d out of a book. There is a semantic argument to be made… you can say that this isn’t worship. Lets say it out loud… calling the Bible the “word of G-d” makes a G-d out of a book, in violation of the First Commandment. This is not monotheism.

A quick look at the way Satan is treated by the church shows a curious similarity to worship. Yes, it is backhanded worship, and lots of negative things are said about Beelzebub. He with the horns and tail is given credit for all kinds of powers, and needs to be fought (with human collateral damage). Yes, Jesus Worshipers give the Devil his due, and then some.

The last “G-d” that we will look at today is Salvation, or the Christian scheme for life after death. Anyone living in the USA has heard this plan a thousand times, and many agree with it. Some do not agree with it. It is none of your business how PG feels. (Your guess is probably correct.)

What is undeniable is the importance placed on salvation in Christianity. It is discussed in every church meeting, often at top volume, and with dramatics that would shame a ham actor. Salvation is said to justify all the rudeness and verbal abuse that Jesus Worshiper inflict on their neighbors. If you do not agree with the concept of Salvation, you have no business belonging to a Christian Church.

Does this hysterical emphasis on Salvation make a G-d out of the concept? As with the Bible and Satan, it is a matter of perspective. A good argument could be made that Jesus Worshipers treat these three items with G-d like devotion, and make G-ds out of them.

Pictures are from The Library of Congress. This is a repost.




Jon Ossoff Pep Rally

Posted in Georgia History, History, Library of Congress, Politics, Religion by chamblee54 on June 5, 2022







Jon Ossoff held a campaign event Monday at Congregation Bet Haverim. Mr. Ossoff is running for Congress, from Georgia’s 6th district. PG lives in the 6th district. CBH is located south of the 6th district, at 2074 Lavista Road, Atlanta, GA 30329. The event was on facebook live, in three parts: part one, part two, and part three. Parts one and two had the camera set at a ninety degree angle, which made for uncomfortable viewing. Part one was some performers, accompanied by a front row of dancing democrats. Part two was the candidate’s remarks. By part three, the camera was set at a conventional angle. The candidate took questions from the crowd.

PG learned during part two that the event was held at CBH. He wondered, is this facility in the 6th district? Mr. Google helped to find a website for CBH, and a map of the 6th district. PG realizes that other people are concerned about the outcome of this election. However, they do not get to vote. Outsiders can, and do, send money. Lots of money. The 6th district is the most expensive congressional race in history. FWIW, Mr. Ossoff does not live in the 6th district.

Most of the advertising financed by this outside money is obnoxious and misleading. Both Mr. Ossoff and his opponent, Karen Handel are guilty. It is poignant to hear Mr. Ossoff say in part two, at 3:51, that the election is not democrat versus republican, but sense versus nonsense. Both sides are spewing nonsense…like the campaign ads accusing Mrs. Handel of using taxpayer money to pay for a “luxury SUV.” The Secretary of State job had an auto allowance. Big deal.

After confirming that CBH is outside the district, PG wanted to make a comment.
Luther Mckinnon – Is CBH in the sixth district? I looked at a district map, and CBH does not appear to be in the 6th district. Is it appropriate to have a campaign rally outside the district, for people who do not live in the district? Mr. Ossoff does not live in the district he wants to represent.
Cenate Pruitt · Luther: I have it on good authority that CBH has congregants who live in that district. Is there a problem with CBH hosting an event as a central location for those congregants to meet with the candidate?
LM – This is a touchy issue. There is a very serious problem with outside money flooding into this election. I, a resident of this district, am sick and tired of the outside attention this race is receiving. I guess if you support Mr. Ossoff you won’t mind, and if you are tired of his dishonest campaign you will mind. The optics of this are very bad.
CP – I don’t live in the Sixth myself. Am I not allowed to have an opinion on the matter?
LM – An opinion yes. A vote no. You might consider that 6th district people might not appreciate your telling them how to vote.
CP – I’ve told nobody how to do anything, nor has CBH as an organization. As far as “out of district money” I politely encourage you to both look up how much out-of-district money has been spent on Handel (those attack ads ain’t free) and take up your concerns with the Supreme Court re: campaign spending.
LM – The optics of this are bad. As far as your “polite encouragement” I have done some research.
Joshua Lesser · Luther Mckinnon, thanks for your question. Let me share with you how and why this meet and greet happened. A. You’re correct CBH is not in the 6th district. B. Many of our members live in the 6th district. C. The campaign asked if we would hold a meet and greet open to the entire Jewish community. D. There was a significant effort to target invitations to people who live in the district. E. This was explicitly not a fundraising event nor an endorsement. F. If Handel’s campaign had asked, I would have advocated that we extend her the same courtesy. I hope that puts some of your alarmed concern to rest.
LM – It was not “alarmed concern” as much as annoyance. This campaign is long and noisy. I am working on a blog post as we speak. I will link to it here.
JL – I understand the annoyance. When you use terms like bad optics, that sounds more like alarm to me. What I didnt say is that there has been vigorous debate in the Jewish press about whether Jon is a good choice. I felt like CBH was doing a community service to allow Jewish voters to hear directly from the candidate. I hope youre not too annoyed that a Jewish candidate might want at least one meet and greet with his community.

At the end of the q&a, a lady made an announcement. There was going to be a group of “Jews for Ossoff” canvassing for the candidate. There were going to be many opportunities for volunteer work. “On sunday, we’re all gonna go canvassing together. WHOOHOO!”

“This was explicitly not a fundraising event nor an endorsement.” No, it was a pep rally. People were encouraged to be fired up for Jon Ossoff. If you want to split hairs, you can say this is not an endorsement. Are we supposed to believe that CBH would have staged an event like this for Karen Handel, if her “campaign had asked”?

The phrase “bad optics” has been used. To PG, this is when something looks bad. The thing with “b.o.” may, or may not, have any real effect on the situation, but it looks bad to outsiders. The first time PG heard this phrase serves as an illustration. It was during the debate on whether to build a new stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. The powers that be want to spend over a billion dollars for a football stadium. Schools don’t have enough money. Roads need repairs and expansion. The sewer system is a disaster. And yet, somehow we want a billion dollars to build a football stadium. Technically, the hotel-motel tax used had been dedicated to financing the Georgia Dome. On one level, it was proper to use this money to build the “Blank Bowl.” However, the schools still don’t have enough money. The overall priorities of our society are questioned. The optics are bad.

How does this apply to a Jon Ossoff pep rally, held outside the 6th district? People outside the district have a right to an opinion. And people inside the district have a right to be annoyed. Whose right is more important? Which group will have a vote in the election? Maybe, just maybe, the campaign by outsiders will annoy the voting population. The voting population might not understand that the enlightened, and wealthy, people outside the district have their best interests at heart. This perceived disrespect might not have the intended effect. Pictures are from The Library of Congress.

UPDATE: Karen Handel defeated Jon Ossoff in the runoff election. In the 2018 election, Mrs. Handel was defeated by Lucy McBath.

In the 2020 elections, Jon Ossoff was elected to the US Senate. After the 2020 elections, the Congressional districts in Georgia were redistricted. The 6th District is now dramatically different.

After this post was published, this message appeared on facebook. “Wed 10:27pm I am really disappointed in you and your unfair portrayal. I feel you abused my goodwill and undetstanding. I dont mind disagreement, but you misrepresented me. Good luck and take care.” When PG tried to reply, he learned that Joshua Lesser had unfriended and blocked him.

PG sent Rabbi Lesser a letter. “My initial comment was to question whether this is appropriate. Cenate Pruitt replied to this, and I replied to Cenate Pruitt. There was one ridiculous comment:”As far as “out of district money” I politely encourage you to both look up how much out-of-district money has been spent on Handel (those attack ads ain’t free) and take up your concerns with the Supreme Court re: campaign spending.” This attitude does not speak well for Mr. Ossoff or CBH.

I don’t see how I misrepresented you, when I quoted you directly. You are entitled to have a pep rally for Jon Ossoff. You misrepresented yourself to say “This was explicitly not a fundraising event nor an endorsement.” I should note that Mr. Ossoff, with all of his problems, is the better choice in this election. I would hope that you have not offended any other 6th district voter with your outside interference or haughty attitude.That is one of my concerns over this event. If something bothers me, it is probably bothering someone else. Luther Mckinnon”






Is Prayer That Great?

Posted in Library of Congress, Religion, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on May 14, 2022


Prayer is not always a good idea.
That is up there with G-d and Motherhood, but somebody has to say it.
Many of my objections are in the phrase,
“Prayer is talking to G-d, and Meditation is Listening.”. In our culture, we love to talk, and don’t have time to listen. Talking is yang, active, power. Listening is ying, receptive, passive, and indicates respect for the person you are paying attention to. This is difficult for many.
No one ever says
“I am going to meditate for you”. Although maybe you should.
Prayer is used as an aggressive weapon.
“I am going to pray for you” is the condescending conclusion of many a religious argument. I have had it shouted at me like a curse.
There is the matter of prayer as entertainment. While this may be cool to those who are on the program, it can be repulsive to others. Once I volunteered to lead the prayer before a dinner. The story is repeated below.

Now, prayer is not a completely bad thing. One of the cherished memories of my father is the brief, commonsense blessings he would give before meals. In the context of a church service, prayer plays a useful function. Some famous prayers are beautiful poetry. In Islam, the daily prayers are an important part of the observance. Who am I to say it is wrong? (A note to the Muslim haters, and opportunistic republicans …We are all G-d’s children.)

When someone is in a bad way, people want to think they can help. Arguably it does not hurt to pray for someone, but it is nothing to boast about.
My problem is when people are proud of their prayers. There are few as prideful as a “humble servant”. While it may mean something to you, not everyone is impressed. And in a religion obsessed with converting others, you should care what man thinks.


So much for world affairs. It is time to tell a story, with no moral and no redeeming social value.

In 1980, I was staying at a place called the Sea Haven Hostel, affectionately known as Sleaze Haven. This was in Seattle WA, as far as you can get from Atlanta, and still be in the lower 48. I was working through Manpower, and staying in a semi private room for $68 a month.

There was a Christian group that met in the basement on Sunday Night. Now, as some of you may know, I am a recovering baptist, who hasn’t been to church since 1971. However, the lure of a free meal was hard to resist, so I went to a few meetings.

One night, after doing quality control work on the local beer supply, I cheerfully joined in the discussion. This was the night when I realized that the Bible is not the Word of G-d. This concept has been very handy in dealing with the ravings of our Jesus-mad culture.

They seemed to like me, though, and welcomed me back. Maybe it was the southern accent.

One Sunday, after the dinner was finished , it was time to have a prayer to begin the meeting. I raised my hand. Now, Jesus Worshipers enjoy prayer as entertainment. When they bow their heads, you see them stretching and deep breathing, in anticipation of a good, lengthy, message to G-d.

My message was a bit of a disappointment. Instead of a long winded lecture about Jesus and the magic book, I said what was on my mind. “Lord, thank you for letting us be here today.” What else do you need to say? This double repost has pictures from The Library of Congress.

Siddhartha Gautama

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Religion by chamblee54 on April 27, 2022


“The Buddha” is available for online viewing. 43 minutes into the PBS production, Gautama Siddhartha (pronounced sid HART ha) turned away from asceticism. He accepted a bowl of rice pudding from a lady, and was a step farther on the path to enlightenment.

Buddhism has always seemed “too asian” for an occidental to follow. There are some things, confirmed by this video, that PG finds appealing. The stories of Buddha are understood to be legends, with no one (that we know of) claiming them to be literal history. This is not like the book worship of Christians. Stories about Jesus are said to be literal truth. The ideas that Buddha taught are not changed by “mistakes” in telling his life story.

There is a story about Buddha seeing his ascetic buddies, after he ate the bowl of rice pudding. He got the ascetics to listen to him, until he won them over. From what PG has seen of humans, especially spiritually charged ones, he finds it tough to imagine these people listening that long. The average Jesus worshiper cannot be quiet long enough for you to finish a single sentence.

Christianity is obsessed with life after death. The Buddha of this show takes a different approach: “There are stories of people coming to the Buddha, and saying, “I am leaving your teaching because you have not told me about whether there is a life after death, or whether there is another world. And the Buddha says, ‘Did I ever say that I would give you the answers to these things?’ ‘No, Lord, you didn’t.’ ‘Why do you think that I ever said that I would give you the answer to these things? Because these are not the things that you need to know. The thing that you need to know is how to deal with suffering, because at this very moment, what made you ask that question was suffering.”

The focus is on the life of Buddha, not his death. The focus is on this life, not on life after death. Buddha lived to an old age, teaching up until his departure. Maybe if Jesus had been better at human relationships, he would not have been executed.

Maybe PG is so scarred by Jesus that he cannot benefit from any other source of wisdom. This is a repost. Pictures are from The Library of Congress. The men are Confederate soldiers from the War Between the States. Many resources are available for those who wish to learn more.

Sin

Posted in Library of Congress, Religion by chamblee54 on March 30, 2022


The post below went up seven years ago. It deals with a publicity stunt from the Catholic church, an updated seven deadly sins. The statute of limitations may have run out on this message. The traditional “seven deadly sins” were anger, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony.
The site linked above has a page, the seven deadly sins of Mohandas Karamachand Gandhi. The subcontinental fashion icon lists Wealth without Work, Pleasure without Conscience, Science without Humanity, Knowledge without Character, Politics without Principle, Commerce without Morality, and Worship without Sacrifice.
After 1,500 years the Vatican has brought the seven deadly sins up to date by adding seven new ones for the age of globalization. The list, published yesterday in L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper, came as the Pope deplored the “decreasing sense of sin” in today’s “secularized world” and the falling numbers of Roman Catholics going to confession. The new deadly sins include polluting, genetic engineering, being obscenely rich, drug dealing, abortion, pedophilia and causing social injustice. HT to Fox News. ( aka the eighth deadly sin.)
One reaction is to wonder, what language was used for the list? Phrases like “obscenely rich” and “causing social injustice” can mean different things, and one wonders about the nuance behind the original expression. Now, Just about all of these “sins” can merit comments. Maybe the Catholic church is thinking of moving its headquarters to hell.
polluting We can talk about something where all have sinned, or who should throw the first stone. If you ride in a car, wear synthetic fibers, through away anything, use a less than perfect sewer system (or a functioning one on a rainy day with overflows), then you have polluted.
genetic engineering Here again, there are semantics galore. Much of the food we eat is tweaked by genetic breeding. This is something Euros get twitchy about, that doesn’t concern most Americans.
being obscenely rich This is one to wonder what the original Italian said. Compared to much of the world, a 900sf house is a palace. However, compared to many of the neighbors, it is lower middle class. Perhaps the emphasis should be on greed, selfishness, and how you gain this wealth. The tenth commandment says something about coveting. It is the forgotten commandment.
drug dealing Is there a distinction between legal and illegal drugs here? If you go by the damage that substances cause, then this rule will speak to bartenders and the clerk who sells cigarettes. Not to mention the media outlets who advertise cigarettes and beer, the legislators who condone these substances while prosecuting potheads, and a whole host of others. The legally based war on drugs is a disaster in this country. Do we really need to drag the Catholic church into it?
abortion. If Mary had gotten an abortion, would Christians worship a vacuum cleaner? Seriously, the Catholic Corporation has flogged this donkey, to great profit, for years. If you don’t want abortions, promote contraception and adoption. Catholics should find another gimmick.
pedophilia When you up pedophile in the dictionary, you see a picture of a Catholic priest.
causing social injustice Can we have a better translation of this?

Mr. Eno And Mr. Isherwood

Posted in Book Reports, Library of Congress, Religion by chamblee54 on March 8, 2022


I was listening to a conversation between Brian Eno and Rick Rubin. Mr. Eno made a comment that sent me down a google rabbit hole, looking for a digital holy grail. When I did not find what I was looking for, I returned to the conversation. Before long, Mr. Eno said something very similar.

“I’d heard something on NPR. It was a poet, a black poet from somewhere in America, reading this poem called Cadillac. I spent years trying to find this thing. I never found it. I wrote to NPR, and I phoned them up, and everything. It was called Pink Cadillac … this amazing, very rhythmic poem, about how he wanted a Pink Cadillac.” This quote got me thinking about another detail.

There are bits of knowledge that want to remain hidden. One is from Christopher Isherwood. It was in a magazine, sometime before 1994. The author died in 1986. The comment was about when you choose a religion. It is not the doctrine that attracts you to a religion, it is the people who introduce you to this observance. If the right person had told Mr. Isherwood about Catholicism, he would have become a Catholic. Instead, in 1938, Aldous Huxley and Gerald Heard introduced Mr. Isherwood to Swami Prabhavananda, and the Vedanta Society of Southern California.

“He (Isherwood) published an account of his spiritual journey at the end of his life, called My Guru and His Disciple.… It’s interesting because it’s so frank and unromantic about the spiritual life. Where Alan Watts basically bullshitted his way to guru status while secretly being an alcoholic and treating his wives like crap, Isherwood is totally upfront about his boredom, his frustration, his vanity, his sexual escapades … he gave us a wonderfully unvarnished account of spiritual mediocrity. As Pema Chodron says, we spend most of our spiritual lives in the middle – not completely lost, yet not completely saved. Just muddling through.”

I did not find the quote I was looking for, but I did find another piece to the puzzle. I went back to Mr. Eno and Mr. Rubin. Then, out of nowhere, came this: “I think that’s the that’s the power of religion as well. The power of religion is not the connection with God, but the connection with the rest of the congregation. The connection with all of the people who also believe in that particular story. I’m not really religious myself but i really respond to that idea.”

Before we return to The Library of Congress for more pictures, there is a quote about God. While responding to a question about spiritual discipline, Mr. Eno said: “I don’t want to be a believer. I want to be somebody who, as far as possible, understands and knows things. Believing things leaves me a little bit unsatisfied. If I find myself believing something, I want to test the belief. I want to say how do I find out how valid this is.” If you want more, you can listen to the complete interview.

Sedevacantism

Posted in Library of Congress, Religion by chamblee54 on February 23, 2022


@LearningthePath “Not enough of you are concerned about the Charismatic Roman Catholic Sedevacantist Dispensationalism of William Tapley, and it shows.” @chamblee54 “too many big words” @LearningthePath “This time, that was intended to help make the joke. Charismatic – Believes in continuing Apostolic Gifts (prophecy, healing, tongues, etc.) Sedevacantist – Believes that the office of the Papacy is Empty.” This is a repost.

Sedevacantism (SV) is weird business, even by Catholic standards. The word literally means the seat is vacant. SV believe that the post-Vatican II has strayed away from the correct faith. The Pope is not Catholic enough to be the Pope. The last legitimate Pope was Pius XII. He died in 1958, after looking the other way during the Holocaust.

This video uses fancier language, to say the same thing. “satyakant ism/said of account ism (you tube transcripts are not inerrant) is the position of those Catholics who refuse to recognize for gay bergoglio (Jorge Mario Bergoglio, aka Pope Francis) as a true Pope. The seed of a canister(?) found that the Copt is vacant on account of the apostasy from the faith on the part of the official hierarchy since the promulgation in 1965 of the documents of the Second Vatican Council.”

If you search for SV on google and youtube, you will find lots of material. Dealing with a Sedevacantist Priest is a video of a radio show. The caller is concerned about some of the things a priest is saying to the flock. Bible verses are trotted out, and used to justify opinions. This is true of all the SV videos. The tone is heavy, heavy Catholic. If you come from a Protestant background, you might think you’re watching science fiction.

Sedevacantism Is Modern Luciferianism is a rather lurid discussion. Alas, there is a bait and switch here. “With the crisis in the Church since Vatican II, many comparisons have been drawn with the Arian crisis of the 4th century, when the majority of the Church’s bishops fell into the heresy of Arianism. … There is the remarkable similarity between today’s sedevacantists and a group of schismatics who were spawned during the Arian crisis: the Luciferians. The Luciferians were less nefarious than their name implies. Rather than being devil-worshipers, they were simply followers of the schismatic Bishop Lucifer of Cagliari.”

There are memes, both SV and anti SV. There is a twitter account: @animesedevacant Anime Sedevacantist ☩ Lover of Pius XII and Anime! SV Singles is another manifestation. Brian-sede is “Seeking Sedevacantist Catholic Woman”. Alas, even here, man just can’t seem to get it right. “Sedevacantist Singles” Employees Not Sure Whether To Recognize Authority. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress. The spell check suggestion for Sedevacantism is Antisemitism.

Jesus Gets A New Nickname

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Music, Poem, Race, Religion by chamblee54 on February 6, 2022

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There is a video making the rounds now. The title involves Jesus, and a certain racial slur, delicately known as the N word. The video is embedded here. You can feel the magic for yourself.

Here is a story about the song, with the edgy language bleeped. “One pastor is trying to spread the word of God with an edgy rap song. The rapping pastor and his wife claim they have “Christian swag” while tossing around the n-word. … The video of the rapping pastor was recently uploaded to YouTube but it’s not clear when it was filmed. It was taken at a church in Iowa which closed in 2004.” Another helpful interneter has the lyrics.

In case you didn’t know, Pastor Jim Colerick, and Mrs Mary-Sue Colerick, are melanin deficient. They are, as Bette Midler once said about Karen Carpenter, so white they are invisible. It is not considered good manners for Caucasians to use this word, with or without salvation.

There is another angle to this equation. Many Jesus worshipers see not using cusswords as a sign of righteousness. As a result, many Jesus worshipers use the words G-d, and Jesus Christ, as tools of their anger. This violates the third commandment. Now, this use of a sacred name, as profanity, is being extended to using a sacred name as a racial slur. Someone is always ready to manipulate language to serve an agenda.

When you call a book “the word of G-d”, you give certain words too much power. When you designate the lazy way of saying black as a super duper naughty word, you give those six letters way too much power. Now, we see the convergence of these two taboos. Let the party begin.

This is a repost. Pictures of Pastor and Mrs. Colerick are taken from the video. The other images are from The Library of Congress. Jack Delano was the photographer in December 1942.

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More True Than Just True

Posted in GSU photo archive, History, Religion, War by chamblee54 on January 26, 2022

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“It isn’t that the bible is true. It’s that the bible is the precondition, for the manifestation of truth. Which makes it way more true, than just true. It’s a whole different kind of true.” Dr. Jordan Bernt Peterson talked, for four hours, on the Joe Rogan Experience recently. As Johnny Cash once said, “The lonely voice of youth cries, what is truth?”

Jordan Peterson’s Realization About the Bible came to him after a visit to the Museum of the Bible, in Washington DC. The truth about MOTB is quite a story.

MOTB “was founded by billionaire Steve Green, an evangelical Christian whose family owns Hobby Lobby.” There are thousands of artifacts from the middle east. This is where the problem starts.

Owners Of Hobby Lobby Ordered To Return Stolen Artifact To Iraq “The New York Times reported that a property law expert “warned company executives that the artifacts might have been looted from historical sites in Iraq” … reportedly ignored this warning and the president of Hobby Lobby, Steve Green, went so far as to travel to the United Arab Emirates to examine “rare Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets.” … It was later in 2010 that the family went on to purchase the 5,500 stolen artifacts for a whopping $1.6 billion.”

With the Iraqi government preoccupied with invasions from the United States, museum security became a low priority. After the regime change in 2003, the situation was out of control. Enter a naive, Jesus-happy billionaire, and what happened is not surprising.

After the Museum of the Bible Discovered Its Dead Sea Scrolls Are Fake … “Between 2009 and 2014, Hobby Lobby tycoon Steve Green snapped up 16 of the post-2002 fragments for his planned Museum of the Bible … Before the institution even opened, it put together a 2016 book, Dead Sea Scrolls Fragments in the Museum Collection (The book is now listed as [Retracted.]) It offered a scholarly analysis of the artifacts, but no scientific testing had been conducted. … other experts have been suspicious for quite some time. As the 430,000-square-foot museum’s November 2017 opening date approached, concerns over the fragments’ authenticity began to mount—one of the book’s other authors, Kipp Davis, even published an article raising the possibility of forgery.”

Museum of the Bible’s Steve Green, statement on past acquisitions “In 2009, when I began acquiring biblical manuscripts and artifacts for what would ultimately form the collection at Museum of the Bible, I knew little about the world of collecting. It is well known that I trusted the wrong people to guide me, and unwittingly dealt with unscrupulous dealers in those early years. One area where I fell short was not appreciating the importance of the provenance of the items I purchased.”

“It’s a whole different kind of true.” Pictures today are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library.”

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