Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Blog of the Lord

Today's Bizarro is brought to you by the Santa Claus For Grownups Corporation.

I have no idea if the pope has a blog, but it is always interesting to me how organized religion can embrace modern ideas and technology, while keeping one foot so firmly planted in the dark ages.

The current Catholic Church still bans birth control of any kind and condemns homosexuality as a perversion. I'm too lazy to look it up, but it was only in the past few decades that the church officially admitted they were wrong in their persecution of Galileo when he dared to imply that the earth was not the center of the universe.

There are evangelical web sites teaching that the earth is 6000 years old, was created in its present form in 6 days, and that an invisible old man in the sky wants us to persecute everyone who isn't as loony as they are. The contradiction of using cutting-edge technology to espouse primitive ideas is delicious.

Not all ideas held by organized religion are primitive, of course. Some religions teach things like love, kindness, charity, forgiveness, justice. But wait, those things are naturally held to be virtues by virtually all people, non-believers included, so you can't really call them "religious" ideas. The only ideas that are unique to religion – invisible superheroes in the sky that can be called upon for everything from winning a war to finding a parking place, eternal life in a perfect world of constant ecstasy, eternal torture for bad guys– are as far-fetched as the Easter Bunny.

Note: I have no intent to offend those readers who believe in a higher power. Though I no longer believe in one, I have for most of my life and theism is clearly a somewhat natural state for humans, an almost irresistible idea. My disdain is not for those who believe, but those who use their beliefs to injure others.

13 comments:

Tanja said...

What's this? Naked people in the water touching each other? Well, if that isn't porn! It's the work of satan, so burn them! Burn them, I say!

Tanja said...

Besides, Adam seems to be looking for dandruff in Eve's hair. It's anyone's guess what Eve's looking at. She looks as though she's about to burst out laughing.

cbahm said...

I loved the way you phrased the last sentence of this post. If you changed "injured to" to "impose upon" it would capture my perspective completely. I have a real thing against intrusive religion.

Oh, and just to go all fan-girl on you for a minute, you are one of my FAVORITE cartoonists ever. Love your work and the weird way your mind works. (Uh, I meant that as a compliment.)

Benjamin Baxter said...

Actually, it wasn't until Galileo that the Church made a ruckus, and then the dispute was about Galieo's interpretation of scripture --- not his heliocentrism.

marin_explorer said...

Hilarious concept. I think Francesco Goya summed it up in his The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters, which is as fitting today as it was 200 years ago--and applicable to everyone.

But I suck at being funny...I leave that up to you.

Steve said...

Love the post.
BTW, it was Galileo who was persecuted by the Catholic Church for adhering to Copernicus' heliocentric views. It was in 1992 that Pope John II apologized for the Church's treatment of Galileo.
(And yes, it WAS over heliocentrism. The original documents bear that out.)

"3 Thighs" Piraro said...

Thanks to my historian readers for correcting my memory of Catholic oppression. I'm going to correct the name in the post now and am leaving this note in the comments so it doesn't make you two look crazy.
You're welcome. :)

Thanks to cbahm for your comments. One can never have enough fangirls!

Tanja- very funny. And true. Those pics are from the Creation Museum if you hadn't guessed. I have GOT to go there someday. I wonder if they throw you out for laughing.

Marin_explorer- yes, exactly. The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins is an excellent recent argument against the sort of world-changing damage religion causes as it puts people's reason to sleep.

marin_explorer said...

"The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins is an excellent recent argument against the sort of world-changing damage...

LOL…well, I suppose the same could be said for anyone who seeks to impose any abstraction as rule on society. Rationales can be just as precarious if one uses materialism to debunk an immaterial non-entity. On the opposite end, fundamentalists paint themselves into a rational corner by insisting the physical world can be interpreted through the lens of Christian doctrine. I find the opposing camps are equally fallacious by asserting the "world would be a better place" without their arch-enemy: the "religious bigot" or "godless humanist". Take your pick: the net result is akin to boxing at monsters in the shadows—I suppose that was my point with the Goya cartoon.

I have issue with any "authority" who pre-packages conclusions that are best arrived by individual thought—if anybody cares to bother with that. Personally, I'll take Voltaire any day over Dawkins, who suggested that reason provides a constructive tool to define human existence, which will always include abstractions such as spirituality or views on human and animal rights, etc.

But there I go again—thinking too hard about this topic. I blame those 3 cups of espresso!
Thank goodness I don't draw cartoons…I would be terribly tedious and unfunny!

EmJayDee said...

Excellent post! Thank you. As an 'active' (not really sure of the right word here) Christian I totally agree about the 'unsound' info out there. And how gullible many members are - even clergy. If it mentions God and the Bible then it must be OK! And in the process downloading damaging material that does nothing to promote positive change.

beforewisdom said...

Where would Jesus blog?

Facebook? MySpace? Livejournal? Wordpress? Blogger? His own private set up?

Tanja said...

Dan, heehee, I know! I've viewed their website before. I'm always fascinated by the fact that there are people out there who think this is perfectly normal (and more than creeped out by the way such views are pushed onto others, all for their own good and out of pure, loving concern for the eternal soul of unbelievers, of course.)

Actually, now that you mention how much fun it could be, I'm really very keen to go and find out whether they'd throw me out for laughing :)) That is, if I should ever get to the US (not sure if that one week when I was 16 and ended up staying with a fundamentalist Christian girl really counts... it was just too surreal.)

Tanja said...

>>My disdain is not for those who believe, but those who use their beliefs to injure others.

Oh, and I absolutely agree with that statement. Having been a Christian once myself, I know how important religious belief can be for some people. But I do wish certain people would respect MY right NOT to believe in God. Freedom of religion, after all, is also the freedom not to have one.

Joshthecartoonguy said...

"Not all ideas held by organized religion are primitive, of course. Some religions teach things like love, kindness, charity, forgiveness, justice. But wait, those things are naturally held to be virtues by virtually all people, non-believers included, so you can't really call them 'religious' ideas."
Bull shit.
The real reason people become atheists is because their afraid of being held accountable for their sin after death.
Without a god, all moral codes are completely arbitrary. Who says murder is wrong? Not murderers. Who are we to impose our morality on them?
And by the way, Darwinism has inspired its fair share of atrocity. In his mind, Adolf Hitler was just speeding along natural selection.