Christopher Hitchens is right – religion does poison everything that can bring Homo sapiens together.
I created a segment on my Google News front page to report on religious matters and some remarkable news items are caught within my set parameters.
I couldn’t help being made aware that Cherie Booth’s dippy sister has swapped one set of religious dogma and delusions for another. I couldn’t bring myself to read any of news items but did find some photographs.
Fancy changing your religion just so you can wear a flowery head scarf ALL the time instead of only on windy days.
Or pirouette in a blue and white tent? Sheesh. How shallow can you paddle?
There is, however, a serious report of some 52 Christians and their minders (security guards) being killed in Baghdad over last weekend. It could be construed that Christians are once again being persecuted in the middle-east and half a million have fled Iraq so far.* Mind you the middle-east is bigger than Iraq so where are they fleeing to? It must be easy to get caught up in yet another border net, while fleeing, and be unable to move any further.
Riverbend was aware of this. She hasn’t written since this time 3 years ago. Are she and her family alive? Who knows. She wrote a blow by blow polemic blog during the beginning of the Iraqi occupation from the middle of Baghdad. She won awards for her blog and still we don’t know who she is. One brave girl.
The ‘War on Terror’ is and always has been misnamed. I think Bush coined the term and it was picked up gleefully all over the world. Its currency sickens me and always has. It is actually and always was, the war on any country in the middle east that wouldn’t allow the West free access (well, just a bit of dosh then) to the oil fields and to build pipelines to carry that oil through to the Gulf or through Pakistan for sea transport to the Western nations that need their oil hit in far greater quantities than they ever needed a drug hit.
The pipeline from Azerbaijan through Afghanistan to Pakistan or India presents compelling evidence for this. See Unocal here. Looking at the middle-east conflict through oily eyes makes a lot more sense than spruiking FREEDOM for the proletariat/indigenes/traditional owners and the religiously marginalised. Excuse my heavy pen.
I have said elsewhere, and together with a lot of people with large profiles and journalistic status that I have ceased being politically correct about religion. All these monotheistic religions and especially Islam seem to actually think that they are religions of peace. I have difficulty understanding the amazing intellectual disconnect, cognitive dissonance and downright bare-faced lies the adherents of any/all these fanciful fairy stories can exhibit. Without shame and without intellectual honesty.
And there appears to be only one understandable excuse for it. Once you boil down the slippery arguments to an opaque nugget of some unrecognisable material you are left with ‘it makes me feel less alone; it makes me feel loved by some being who doesn’t tell me off or shout at me for being a dork’. Well, of course. What else could you expect from a non-being.
Poor old Tim Marshall in his blog plays the religious apologist without really understanding that that is what he is doing.
I think Richard Dawkins (and others) said it well when he said that the moderates of any religion enable the radical extremists by giving them legitimacy and a floor to stand on.
Poor old Tim Marshall hasn’t got to the point where he actually understands that Islam is a religion whose adherents are commanded to proselytise their beliefs by overrunning other ethnic groups and religions and countries until they have made the whole world according to Islam. The methodology to achieve this didn’t and still doesn’t preclude the sword and ethnic cleansing.
Has anyone looked at Ahmadinejad’s eyes lately or listened to his polemics?
He is one frighteningly committed dictator and a worthy successor to Khomeini. He makes histrionic type statements and demands which can be played down and/or brushed off. He sparked a walk-out at the UN in September. But he sees himself as a true believer. That makes him dangerous as well as a kook. Christians are similar to their brothers of The Book, although less violently oriented these days – a sort of older and more washed out version of their Islamic brethren. But make no mistake, there are the radical sects of Christianity that flex their muscles (well, tendons) in an attempt to counter the growing sweep of Islam and, it appears to take up the slack and lazy pretend members of holy christendom.
The Crusades of the 11th, 12th and 13th century were the finest proselytising and war defining hours for the Christians. Resting on your laurels is just not on for proselytisers now is it? Got to keep trucking. Christians are now playing catch-up to Muslims. As tag teams they’re not that bad, just a few centuries here or there. To me at this point, it seems the Muslims are winning at tag.
Jumping to the present, though the past always sits on the shoulder, the Roman Catholic Church, in the interests of proselytising and finding safe houses for its paedophile priests, has made such incredible inroads into Africa that the rest of us sigh and wonder if we can combat superstition and irrationality with reason and critical thinking and, above all, secular education. Sob, it appears not!
It is a monumentally difficult task. And AIDS is on the rise partly because of the Pope’s stupid, repeatedly broken record edict that every sperm is sacred and all women need a dose or preferably several. Sorry, with Catholics, make that ‘many’.
The other part is, of course, that so many paedophile priests were incarcerated in Africa through Vatican intervention. Intervention not on what the priests were doing but where they were doing what they were doing.
- Oh dear, there are more deaths