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Nomadic Kenyans suffering from drought, famine
Somali children receive medical treatment at a Turkish field hospital on August 19, 2011 in Mogadishu, Somalia.
September 18th, 2011
07:56 AM ET

Nomadic Kenyans suffering from drought, famine

By Gabe LaMonica, CNN

(CNN)–World Relief, a Christian evangelical aid organization, is collaborating with Kenyan churches and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to stem the tide of acute malnutrition across the northern region of Kenya called Turkana.

Famine today "is rarely mentioned anymore," said Don Golden, a senior vice president for World Relief based out of Baltimore. It is a word reserved strictly for Somalia, he said.

But famine, like a plague, spreads, and, "In reality it's a very large food security crisis involving a number of countries and millions at risk," said Golden, referring to the crisis situation in vast regions of east Africa.

"We have the means to stop famine," he said. "The only reason it is happening now is because of al-Shabab-controlled territory in Somalia."

According to Golden, refugees fleeing the al-Shabab-dominated famine areas of Somalia are exacerbating the situation in Turkana, a region already poor in resources. "The old saying is that droughts are natural disasters and famine is manmade," he said.

"Nearly one-quarter of the children in Turkana are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition," Golden said.

Turkana is drought-stricken and encompasses an area where a great body of evidence for early hominid development has been unearthed.

Areas east of the saltwater Lake Turkana have provided a boon for archaeologists, who have recovered fossils from the Pleistocene era; the first Australopithecus skull and Homo habilis were found here. In 1984,"Turkana boy," or Homo erectus or Homo ergaster was found here.

In a speech this March, then-U.S. Ambassador Michael Ranneberger called Kenya a " 'have-not' country related to water ... with an average of less than 1,000 cubic meters available per person per year."

Americans have access to four times that much water.

Pastor Simon Ndegwa of Parklands Baptist Church in Nairobi, some 700 miles away from Turkana, said the people there "are first a community isolated, they are secondly a community facing conflict every day, and they are thirdly a community that's living in a terrain that's very, very challenging."

It is a terrain that Peter Smerdon, the chief of media relations at the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF's) global headquarters in New York, is familiar with.

Do the Turkana have to change to survive?

"All the arid and semiarid areas have similar problems of lifestyle as to whether it continues or not," Smerdon said.

Stopping people from starving to death is different than enabling them to fend for themselves. "There's a way of helping that can hurt," said Ndegwa, who collaborates closely with World Relief.

"Sometimes interventions have the capacity to completely take away what's so valuable to a people," he said.

In the case of the Turkana, who are a pastoralist, animist people, what are valuable to them are their cattle and their ability to move around in search of pastures. Their nomadic tendencies take them across country and tribal borders.

"We shouldn't just throw these people on the dust heap and say look, your lifestyle is no longer permitted and you need to be a farmer," Smerdon said. Before coming to UNICEF, he was with the World Food Program operating out of northern Kenya.

"In 2006," he said, "the people who survived the drought the best were those who educated some of their children who now were working in big towns like Nairobi and able to send money back in order to supplement loss of livestock."

Smerdon and Golden agree that to create sustainability for an isolated people in today's interconnected world, there has to be a bridge. The answer then, lies in education.

Initially, in an emergency situation, "everyone is saying we want water and food," Smerdon said, "but at the end they are saying we want school fees."

In a modern world, people can survive famine by "giving up their way of life, settling in internally displaced persons (IDP) camps and waiting for free food," Golden said.

"Educating schoolchildren is a way to change lifestyles" for isolated children growing into a globalized world and "therefore they can get a job and provide a lifeline (to their families) when there is a drought," Smerdon said.

"There's the emergency response but also very much a realization that you have to help communities build up their resistance and find other ways of earning money," he said.

Ndegwa said, "We must hear the cry of a vulnerable people, the Turkana, during their hour of need."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Africa • Christianity • Kenya

soundoff (198 Responses)
  1. HeavenSent

    Heaven sent us famine, drought, tsunamis, hurricanes, and tornadoes, plus myriad cancers, typhoid, pneumonia, malaria, lupus, and other horrible diseases too numerous to mention.

    Thanks god, for being such an azzhole.

    Amen.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
    • Ladervijd

      Regarding i.e. drought, science says there is human-caused global warming, so large-scale consum is the culprint scientifically.

      And, so attached to your bodily-self that you aren't even capable of picking a nick of your own?

      September 20, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • Ten Cate Bob

      Pick those nicks, man. Go for it. Then go after some nits once you learn the technique. You'll find a lot of them in your scalp.

      September 20, 2011 at 9:45 pm |
  2. Bo

    @ David Johnson 10:19am In your reply to TruthPrevails, you have some very good and legitimate questions and observations which are difficult to explain to an unbeliever. God has given every person the right to make his/her choices, whether they are good or bad. God knew you long before you were ever born and God knew what choices you would make, but at the same time He will not interfere with the choices you make, but God will give you every chance to make the right choices. As an example in the Bible we have the story of King of Babylon (whose name I can’t honestly spell I’m just going to call him Neb) Neb knew and recognized that the God of Daniel was far superior to his gods, and even though, he, Neb was a good man at heart he refused to bow to God and even attempted to place himself above God. But, God in his wisdom and love knew that with the right persuasion Neb would acknowledge God as God. Very shortly after his refusal to give God the credit for the accomplishments that he had made God struck him with a mental illness. And he ate grass with the beasts of the field for seven years. After Neb regained his mental capacities he acknowledged God and worshiped him the rest of his life. I’m sure you have a Bible, read the story in Daniel 4 (By the way, Neb is the person who wrote this story.) God loves you and wants to save your soul, it’s your choice.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Nebuchadnezzar

      September 20, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • USmellLikePee

      What you are regurgitating is only a story, not truth.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  3. William Demuth

    Talk about recruiting followers from the desperate!

    Starving people being fed Christian Kool Aid.

    September 20, 2011 at 9:46 am |
    • Mathilda

      William, have you ever been thirsty? I mean, really thirsty? Nothing in this world is better than Christian Kool Aid!!

      September 20, 2011 at 9:50 am |
  4. McJesus

    Thank you for famine Jesus! We love you too!

    September 19, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
    • Mathilda

      @Mc-, Jesus gave enough food to the planet but secular Westerners never share anything, worrying over oil and toys all the time. His followers alone are rescuing the needy, as usual.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:01 am |
    • Shut Up!!!!!!

      Shut up.

      September 20, 2011 at 2:09 am |
    • HeavenSent

      McJ, famine is NOT for food nor water. Famine means not hearing Jesus' truth from His letter He wrote to all of us, the Bible.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Heaven sent us famine, drought, tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes, plus myriad cancers, typhoid, pneumonia, malaria, lupus, and other horrible diseases too numerous to mention.

      Thanks god, for being such an azzhole.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  5. Muneef

    O mankind! Lo! We have created you from male and female, and have made you nations and tribes that ye may know one another. Lo! the noblest of you, in the sight of Allah, is the best in conduct. Lo! Allah is Knower, Aware. (13)
     
    O ye who believe! Let not a folk deride a folk who may be better than they (are), not let women (deride) women who may be better than they are; neither defame one another, nor insult one another by nicknames. Bad is the name of lewdness after faith. And whoso turneth not in repentance, such are evil-doers. (11) 

    September 19, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • Reality

      Saving Muneef yet again:

      The Five Steps To Deprogram 1400 Years of Islamic Myths:
      ( –The Steps take less than two minutes to finish- simply amazing, two minutes to bring peace and rationality to over one billion lost souls- Priceless!!!)

      Are you ready?

      Using "The 77 Branches of Islamic "faith" a collection compiled by Imam Bayhaqi as a starting point. In it, he explains the essential virtues that reflect true "faith" (iman) through related Qur’anic verses and Prophetic sayings." i.e. a nice summary of the Koran and Islamic beliefs.

      The First Five of the 77 Branches:

      "1. Belief in Allah"

      aka as God, Yahweh, Zeus, Jehovah, Mother Nature, etc. should be added to your cleansing neurons.

      "2. To believe that everything other than Allah was non-existent. Thereafter, Allah Most High created these things and subsequently they came into existence."

      Evolution and the Big Bang or the "Gi-b G-nab" (when the universe starts to recycle) are more plausible and the "akas" for Allah should be included if you continue to be a "crea-tionist".

      "3. To believe in the existence of angels."

      A major item for neuron cleansing. Angels/de-vils are the mythical creations of ancient civilizations, e.g. Hitt-ites, to explain/define natural events, contacts with their gods, big birds, sudden winds, protectors during the dark nights, etc. No "pretty/ug-ly wingy thingies" ever visited or talked to Mohammed, Jesus, Mary or Joseph or Joe Smith. Today we would classify angels as f–airies and "tin–ker be-lls". Modern de-vils are classified as the de-mons of the de-mented.

      "4. To believe that all the heavenly books that were sent to the different prophets are true. However, apart from the Quran, all other books are not valid anymore."

      Another major item to delete. There are no books written in the spirit state of Heaven (if there is one) just as there are no angels to write/publish/distribute them. The Koran, OT, NT etc. are simply books written by humans for humans.

      Prophets were invented by ancient scribes typically to keep the un-educated masses in line. Today we call them for-tune tellers.

      Prophecies are also invali-dated by the natural/God/Allah gifts of Free Will and Future.

      "5. To believe that all the prophets are true. However, we are commanded to follow the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)
      alone."
      Mohammed spent thirty days "fasting" (the Ramadan legend) in a hot cave before his first contact with Allah aka God etc. via a "pretty wingy thingy". Common sense demands a neuron deletion of #5. #5 is also the major source of Islamic vi-olence i.e. turning Mohammed's "fast, hunger-driven" hallu-cinations into horrible reality for unbelievers.

      Walk these Five Steps and we guarantee a complete recovery from your Islamic ways!!!!

      Unfortunately, there are not many Muslim commentators/readers on this blog so the "two-minute" cure is not getting to those who need it. If you have a Muslim friend, send him a copy and help save the world.

      Analogous steps are available at your request for deprogramming the myths of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Paganism..

      September 19, 2011 at 11:50 pm |
    • .........

      spam alert hit report abuse on all reality posts

      September 20, 2011 at 8:10 pm |
    • Muneef

      To Believe or Disbelieve;
      Why would these Quran verses be here if Muslims are supposed to kill disbelievers for being by what is known by "Infidels/Polytheists/Pagans,etc.."
      Read the verses to see that each can worship or believe or disbelieve what they want in "Freedoms of Beliefs & The Mutual understanding of Live and Let Live"...! Any one telling otherwise could means how much people are far from the Quran teachings or misunderstanding... This Sura was a Call for a Multi-cultured Colors living together as an integrated Nation..All was there was to pay annual dues to the "The Islamic Treasury"Al-Geziah" which was to be paid by the non Muslims just as form of an annual Tax similar to that which was applied on Muslims annually in the name of "Zakat of Wealth" to the "Islamic Treasury" which in return was developing the land/people and assisted their "Poor and Needy" of all those nationals within the land...!

      It wouldn't be fair if Muslim was only to pay the annual Islamic treasury dues (Zakat)..!? And since Zakat is not applicable to non Muslims then there was another different name that serves the same purpose called "Al-Geziah"...!! Based on this understanding and submission, the Islamic Multi culture empires were built and ruled continents rather than countries...

      Surat Al-Kāfirūn (The Disbelievers) – Sura 109. 1 to 6 verses by Sahih International 
      Surat Al-Kāfirūn (The Disbelievers) -(Sura 109)

      Say, "O disbelievers,(01)
      I do not worship what you worship.(02)
      Nor are you worshippers of what I worship.(03)
      Nor will I be a worshipper of what you worship.(04)
      Nor will you be worshippers of what I worship.(05)
      For you is your religion, and for me is my religion."(06)
      http://quran.com/109
      ------

      Still we find that Islam is open to integrate with Multi Culture meeting people of all beliefs although each has own religion or belief...;

      Surat Al-Ĥujurāt (The Rooms) -109:

      O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.(13)
      ---
      They consider it a favor to you that they have accepted Islam. Say, "Do not consider your Islam a favor to me. Rather, Allah has conferred favor upon you that He has guided you to the faith, if you should be truthful."(17)

      Indeed, Allah knows the unseen [aspects] of the heavens and the earth. And Allah is Seeing of what you do.(18)

      September 20, 2011 at 8:57 pm |
    • Reality

      And to summarize with a posting for all refrigerator doors:

      SAVING 1.5 BILLION LOST MUSLIMS:
      THERE NEVER WERE AND NEVER WILL BE ANY ANGELS I.E. NO GABRIEL, NO ISLAM AND THEREFORE NO MORE KORANIC-DRIVEN ACTS OF HORROR AND TERROR LIKE 9/11.

      SAVING 2 BILLION LOST CHRISTIANS:
      THERE WERE NEVER ANY BODILY RESURRECTIONS AND THERE WILL NEVER BE ANY BODILY RESURRECTIONS I.E. NO EASTER, NO CHRISTIANITY.

      SAVING 15.5 MILLION FOLLOWERS OF JUDAISM:
      ABRAHAM AND MOSES PROBABLY NEVER EXISTED.

      Added details upon request.

      September 20, 2011 at 11:40 pm |
  6. when

    TP. So if I disagree with you, I'm hateful and a bigot? I don't you and I'm not a bigot. I simply disagree with you. I disagree without the need to call you stupid, an idiot, uneducated, bigoted and all the other unflattering terms that atheists like to throw around. You all seem to want the Christians to lie down, take your abuse and be submissive to your inability to comprehend scripture thus, twisting it around to disprove the existence of God, which you haven't been able to accomplish. Then, if we respond...here come the nasty darts and arrows. Question: Why can't atheists debate without the snide, rude name-calling and insults? And why do you get so upset with the God of the Bible and leave the concepts of other gods alone, for the most part? Ever ask yourself THAT question? Cheers!

    September 19, 2011 at 12:31 pm |
    • hippypoet

      proove that Zues is not real? proove that he is real? then look at your "god" for any differences bewteen your belief and your proove of existence of another "god"...maybe then you will see that its all just myths and legends... its like the game of telephone when you were a kid. if you ever played that game, its when someone says something to you in your ear and then its your job to tell the story again to the next person in there ear.. after about 10 people the story has changed, and so thus time changes the truth by the people who spoke it.

      just think about it!

      September 19, 2011 at 12:55 pm |
    • claybigsby

      "twisting it around to disprove the existence of God, which you haven't been able to accomplish."

      Well considering you cannot prove a negative, atheists wouldnt be able to prove god doesnt exist. Burden of proof falls on the faithful to prove your god is the one true god.

      September 19, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
    • Flash

      when: "why do you get so upset with the God of the Bible and leave the concepts of other gods alone, for the most part?"

      Most of the posters here are American, which is overrun by believers in the "God" of the Bible. If we were in India, we would have the same argument about Vishnu, Ganesh, Shiva, and the rest of that array of gods, and we would not want to be ruled according to the "wishes" of those mythical beings.

      September 19, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      When, atheists (especially on this site) PROVE Jesus' existence, just by posting about Him. They certainly spend a lot of time looking Him up on their rag sites. Even the Talmud proves Jesus is the son of God and walked among us.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  7. when

    Sorry TP but that is such a lame excuse for mistreating people. I don't see Christians doing any more "poking" than the atheists. The athiests just do a lot of name calling and are extremely rude and/or hateful. Sorry Dave. I realize you THINK you know everything about the Bible and Christianity but you are so blind/wrong/deluded, I don't know where to start. Unbelievable. TP. If you don't want to hear about belief in God, you might want to think about not googling a BELIEF blog. ?

    September 19, 2011 at 11:07 am |
    • May

      Religion is an incorrect response when it comes to prejudice. Everyone needs some kind of faith, and how they get it is their own ordeal. As far as I am concerned, religion is just as sacred as the one you choose to be your sole mate.

      September 19, 2011 at 11:17 am |
    • Sharon

      You do realize you just did what you are accusing of others right. Typical christian, twisting it around trying to make themselves look good while judging others of the exact thing they are guilty of, the log in their own eye. LOL!

      September 19, 2011 at 11:27 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      I don't need to google this site when I have it bookmarked. I would not call you out on what you claim to be the truth if it was actually the truth. As much as David can defend himself, when he does point out bible verses he is merely pointing out the discrepancies within. When you stop the hatred and bigotry, we will stop arguing with you.

      In regards to the prejudice remark by May...you people do it all the time when you condemn all other beliefs (ie: when you pick on Atheists). (A prejudice is a prejudgment, an assumption made about someone or something before having adequate knowledge to be able to do so with guaranteed accuracy, or "judging a book by its cover". ) Nothing like the pot calling the kettle black! Our facts are not 2000 years old, they are based on recent studies.

      September 19, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • David Johnson

      @when

      You said: "Sorry Dave. I realize you THINK you know everything about the Bible and Christianity but you are so blind/wrong/deluded, I don't know where to start. Unbelievable. "

      Well golly, When! Start anywhere you like and we can discuss it.

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • claybigsby

      "I realize you THINK you know everything about the Bible and Christianity but you are so blind/wrong/deluded,"

      And I realize you think you KNOW everything about this life and the universe we live in. Without PROOF you have nothing but speculation. In case you dont know its definition:

      proof

      noun
      1.
      evidence sufficient to establish a thing as true, or to produce belief in its truth.
      2.
      anything serving as such evidence: What proof do you have?
      3.
      the act of testing or making trial of anything; test; trial: to put a thing to the proof.
      4.
      the establishment of the truth of anything; demonstration.
      5.
      Law . (in judicial proceedings) evidence having probative weight.

      Using this definition, and considering Christians think they KNOW everything about life, death, god, and the universe,, the burden of proof clearly remains on you, not Atheists. So please prove your god is the one true god. Remember...proof not speculation or hearsay from a priest.

      September 19, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  8. Alfonzo Muchanzo

    Why all the hateful comments every day from atheists? It amazes me that you all come on here every single day to post vile comments for something to which you have no belief in.......me thinks deep down you're scared you might be incorrect.

    I always find it interesting when having a disagreement with someone, how that person responds. Generally, if they get angry and overly defensive, that means they're trying to defend something that deep down they know has some truth. Now ofcourse this is not always the case, and the context of a particular argument must always be taken into consideration, however it does seem that this type of arguing is attributable to many of the angry atheist's posts on this board.

    September 19, 2011 at 10:44 am |
    • Chuckles

      I think you'll find a fair amount of atheists come here to debate the intricacies or religion, or at least its basis, however to gloss over the equally hateful and mean things that believers say about atheists is being dishonest. Why do believers come to this blog just to bash atheists? It's a vicious cycle.

      Generally when I am in disagreement with someone and they fall back into the "faith" argument, for the most part it seems they don't have a satisfactory answer that they themselves can't reconcile with the real world, so instead of saying "I don't know" which I think is a more honest answer, they say, "god did it and I have faith god exists, so there's an explanation" so the real question is who is being more dishonest in a debate between a believer and an atheist? The one who provides scientific findings and appeals to the believer to look at it rationally and then gets exasperated and says something about the believers intelligence, or the believer who askes the atheist to look into a mirror or around at nature and demand they find gods hand in it without any proof except that since it seems so "perfect" it couldn't have happened by chance and when they fail in persuading the atheist, condem them to hel.l in a number of ways, or make passive aggressive threats about how we'll have to answer to god after death for our disbelief.

      September 19, 2011 at 10:57 am |
    • DamianKnight

      @Chuckles,

      I can see the viewpoint of the athiests. "How is it that people of faith, with no basis of proof, claim emperically state God exists." And that's a valid argument...when one is basing their argument from a completely secular viewpoint. The fact of the matter is, the answer is right there, in the first part of the sentence.

      "People of faith." Faith is the belief in something with no evidence to support it. Faith and hope are quintessential for the believer. The problem is, many athiests want scientific proof of God's existance. But if you're waiting for people of faith to grow God in a petri dish, you're going to be waiting a long time. It's trying to use physical, worldly means to prove something spiritual. This is the proverbial "Round peg in a square hole."

      September 19, 2011 at 11:14 am |
    • Alfonzo Muchanzo

      @chuckles – Well, yes there certainly are Christians who come on here and also post vile comments, however the sheer majority certainly comes from atheists (from what I've observed).

      In response to your comments about debate. You seem to only reference Christians who promote creationism, or a 6k yr old earth, etc. In reality, there are many Christians (many prominent I also might add) who are in support of evolution, etc. Biologos is just one website that reconciles science with belief, is headed by Francis Collins (head of human genome project). In addition, scientists have concluded that the chances of earth just "happening" by chance is something like .1^4561621894 or something......which is a 0% chance (statisticians give stuff a 0% chance if it is so small that it cannot conceivable happen as in the case above).

      Cheers 🙂

      September 19, 2011 at 11:22 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Alfonzo Muchanzo

      You said: "scientists have concluded that the chances of earth just "happening" by chance is something like .1^4561621894 or something......which is a 0% chance (statisticians give stuff a 0% chance if it is so small that it cannot conceivable happen as in the case above)."

      Christian websites often utilize these sort of statistics. They are deceiving.

      Imagine that I have a large bowl of rice. Each grain is numbered, so each grain can be identified. Suppose, that I put this rice into a tumbler and mixed it for several minutes. I then pour this rice back into the bowl. The rice is randomly distributed. The odds of the rice forming this exact distribution is astronomical. Yet, it has done exactly that.

      Your argument is not sound.

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
    • claybigsby

      "Faith is the belief in something with no evidence to support it."

      So if i had "Faith" in the easter bunny or leprechauns being real, you wouldn't laugh and think how crazy the leprechaun religion is? We in society call this schizophrenia. Why this doesn't apply to your "Faith", I dont know. Maybe cause there are almost 2 Billion people who are brainwashed to believing this stuff and we cant have 2 Billion schizophrenic people in the world. We would look CRAZY

      September 19, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
    • AGuest9

      @Alfonzo Muchanzo
      "In addition, scientists have concluded that the chances of earth just "happening" by chance is something like .1^4561621894 or something......which is a 0% chance (statisticians give stuff a 0% chance if it is so small that it cannot conceivable happen as in the case above)."

      Which scientists? How many? What are their names? Have all of their papers been published on the Arxiv, and further, in peer-reviewed journals? Francis Collins is the head of the Nat'l Inst.it of Health, and has been called out for his public participation in what is viewed as an anti-science organization. Again, "the faithful" are using half-truths to support their arguments.

      September 19, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  9. Doc Vestibule

    Helping the starving can be a difficult task for those not able to accept the reality of moral relativism (like many well meaning Christians).
    During the first Gulf War, the Kuridish people were being driven out of Iraq and into the mountains bodering Turkey.
    They fled by the thousands with nothing but what they could carry.
    The United Nations set up Operation Provide Comfort and tried to provide relief to the many that were dying en route.
    They provided medicine, food, potable water, shelter and clothing – but not all of it was accepted.
    Levi Strauss sent shipments of blue jeans to help combat the frigid mountain temperatures, but the muslim Kurds wouldn't wear them becuase Levi is a Jewish name.
    In the early days of the operation, the U.S. army provided food in the form of field rations (M.R.E.s).
    These too were rejected as they were not halal. Bear in mind that young children were dying by the hundreds of malnutrition and dehydration and their parents refused to feed them.
    I can promise you that had the relief task force been overtly religious – IE: Christian missionaries handing out scripture along with aid – the Kurds would not even have accepted the life-saving medicine given them.

    Genocidal religious persecution drove them from their homes.
    Strict adherence to religious dogma killed many of them, even as the world extended a helping hand.

    So to all you believers out there – remember these facts the next time you wonder why atheists disdain religion.

    September 19, 2011 at 10:37 am |
    • DamianKnight

      @Doc,

      Interesting insight. I can absolutely see why athiests disdain religion, especially when the vocal minority gets media attention and tries to make that the dominant viewpoint.

      As a Christian, there are times when people with the ability to speak about my faith make absolutely ridiculous comments (i.e. Pat Robertson calling for the assassination of the Venezuelan President). I think the majority of Christians fall much more moderate than the talking heads on television. Just like, not all Republicans agree with Rush Limbaugh. I think it's important for us to realize that the people speaking are spouting -their- beliefs and not necessarily the beliefs of all the people sharing their religion.

      September 19, 2011 at 10:59 am |
    • evolvedDNA

      DOC and Damien.. well thought out responses.. I agree with both of you.

      September 19, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
  10. hippypoet

    "Educating schoolchildren is a way to change lifestyles" for isolated children growing into a globalized world and "therefore they can get a job and provide a lifeline (to their families) when there is a drought," Smerdon said....

    i have to disagree with this statement – Educating is great – don't get me wrong, i am very educated... but in certain lifetstyles where knowing things is good is great, but thinking that because you come from this lifestyle that all others should learn what you have learned is silly... these people need medicine and water, then they will want whoever helpped them to either leave, or stay so they can have help whenever. But they want to live the way they have lived for hundreds of years...like their fathers and mothers did before them. They live in the REAL world and we want to tell them you can keep doing this, but if you get a job your family will be much better off... money is evil – these people come from where gold is plentyful and ivory was once all over- yet they don't seem to care because whats important is there lifestyle and way of doing things that teaches there kids to do the same thing as they grow up. Its tribal! what kind of world do we live in where the tribe is forced to "get a job" so little timmy can BUY his new back pack... you know they are the last people who still make things out of the oringal materials, no fabric, no poly-whatever, just plain cloths and whatever else you might NEED! i don't know anymore, i lack complete faith in the new worlds way of doing things...work for money so you can pay for things you didn't make, and will throw out once broken... i hate it! i think its wrong to be taxed for simply working, they tax you on the amount you work, then what you buy with the money you were taxed on, then at the end of the year the govn. checks all the money they took incase they missed something. maybe they should get a job!! see the circle of evil money, its a never ending loop of death by work for something you have no real stock in. or raise cattle and farm for your food, work to live – that makes more sense to me.

    September 19, 2011 at 7:58 am |
  11. when

    Hi, hesalive. Good to see you on here.

    September 19, 2011 at 4:19 am |
  12. when

    Heaven Sent: So nice to read your posts. They are calming after all the hatefilled ones. You mentioned, money is their god but I also think they hate authority of any kind. They don't want God exposing their wickedness, yet they expose it with every post. They definitely think that most all religious sects are Christian, which proves they know nothing about God. They accuse us of being delusional and close minded. They don't know me or my journey. Satan has sent them such delusions. I didn't even know how foul and hateful atheists are, til I came on the blogs. All we can do is pray for God to open their eyes.

    September 19, 2011 at 3:45 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      We don't hate authority. We don't hate too much to be honest. When you refer to authority you refer to a god that has never been proven to exist. When we refer to authority we are referring to the laws of the land as set out by our ruling governments.

      September 19, 2011 at 7:01 am |
    • HeavenSent

      When, non-believers destroyed my career and personal life. I am living proof that with Jesus' truth to guide my life, we can withstand anything that the carnally minded can and will dish out while living on earth. I learned never to underestimate a heathen because they can and will go lower than the next go around. It's all about ego with them. Never to learn or want to go humble, as Jesus told us.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      TruthPrevails, bottom line. We all have 2 choices. Love and follow Jesus' truth and spiritually live while on earth, as it is in heaven. Live eternally with Him or, love and follow satan's lies. Spiritually die while on earth, as you will in heaven. Still don't love Jesus after the day of the Lord, get blotted out. No eternity for you.

      It's that simple. Two choices. Choose wisely.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  13. yada

    Sad story in the news.

    September 19, 2011 at 12:36 am |
    • Patel

      Ironic that we cannot help these people directly and at once. That is the one thing I think most people would like to be able to do.

      September 19, 2011 at 12:45 am |
    • McJesus

      Easy... pray about it. It is highly effective. You will certainly see immediate results with a drastic reduction in human suffering.

      September 19, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  14. Reality

    We have the means to stop famine," he said. "The only reason it is happening now is because of al-Shabab-controlled territory in Somalia."

    And who is al-Shabab?

    "The group is an off-shoot of the Islamic Courts Union, which splintered into several smaller organizations after its removal from power by Ethiopian forces in 2006.[6

    Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/al-shabaab-1#ixzz1YIyMRi48

    Add another koranic-driven atrocity to the following list:

    The Muslim Conquest of India – 11th to 18th century

    ■"The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

    and the 19 million killed in the Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C by Muslims.

    and more recently

    1a) 179 killed in Mumbai/Bombay, 290 injured

    1b) Assassination of Benazir Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh

    2) 9/11, 3000 mostly US citizens, 1000’s injured

    3) The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US troops killed in action, 3,480 and 928 in non combat roles. 102,522 – 112,049 Iraqi civilians killed as of 9/16/2011/, mostly due to suicide bombers, land mines and bombs of various types, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and http://www.defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf

    4) Kenya- In Nairobi, about 212 people were killed and an estimated 4000 injured; in Dar es Salaam, the attack killed at least 11 and wounded 85.[2]

    5) Bali-in 2002-killing 202 people, 164 of whom were foreign nationals, and 38 Indonesian citizens. A further 209 people were injured.

    6) Bali in 2005- Twenty people were killed, and 129 people were injured by three bombers who killed themselves in the attacks.

    7) Spain in 2004- killing 191 people and wounding 2,050.

    8. UK in 2005- The bombings killed 52 commuters and the four radical Islamic suicide bombers, injured 700.

    9) The execution of an eloping couple in Afghanistan on 04/15/2009 by the Taliban.

    10) – Afghanistan: US troops 1,385 killed in action, 273 killed in non-combat situations as of 09/15/2011. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror

    11) The killing of 13 citizen soldiers at Ft. Hood by a follower of the koran.

    12) 38 Russian citizens killed on March 29, 2010 by Muslim women suicide bombers.

    13) The May 28, 2010 attack on a Islamic religious minority in Pakistan, which have left 98 dead,

    14) Lockerbie is known internationally as the site where, on 21 December 1988, the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 crashed as a result of a terrorist bomb. In the United Kingdom the event is referred to as the Lockerbie disaster, the Lockerbie bombing, or simply Lockerbie. Eleven townspeople were killed in Sherwood Crescent, where the plane's wings and fuel tanks plummeted in a fiery explosion, destroying several houses and leaving a huge crater, with debris causing damage to a number of buildings nearby. The 270 fatalities (259 on the plane, 11 in Lockerbie) were citizens of 21 nations.

    15 The daily suicide and/or roadside and/or mosque bombings in the terror world of Islam.

    16) Bombs sent from Yemen by followers of the koran which fortunately were discovered before the bombs were detonated.

    17) The killing of 58 Christians in a Catholic church in one of the latest acts of horror and terror in Iraq.

    18) Moscow airport suicide bombing: 35 dead, 130 injured. January 25, 2011.

    19) A Pakistani minister, who had said he was getting death threats because of his stance against the country's controversial blasphemy law, was shot and killed Wednesday, 3/2/2011

    20) two American troops killed in Germany by a recently radicalized Muslim, 3/3/2011

    21) the kidnapping and apparent killing of a follower of Zoraster in the dark world of Islamic Pakistan.

    22) Shariatpur, Bangladesh (CNN 3/30/2011) – Hena Akhter's last words to her mother proclaimed her innocence. But it was too late to save the 14-year-old girl. Her fellow villagers in Bangladesh's Shariatpur district had already passed harsh judgment on her. Guilty, they said, of having an affair with a married man. The imam from the local mosque ordered the fatwa, or religious ruling, and the punishment: 101 lashes delivered swiftly, deliberately in public. Hena dropped after 70 and died a week later.
    =====================================================================================
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    September 18, 2011 at 11:42 pm |
    • hesalive

      Satan likes religion that denies the divinity of Christ.

      September 19, 2011 at 3:28 am |
    • Reality

      Part of the infamous angel/devil con:

      Jesus and his family had Michael, Gabriel, and Satan, the latter being a modern day dem-on of the de-mented.

      September 19, 2011 at 7:17 am |
    • David Johnson

      @hesalive

      You said: "Satan likes religion that denies the divinity of Christ."

      Satan doesn't exist. No real evidence, that Jesus ever did either.

      Oh, my deluded believers! There is no devil. No demons of any sort. Nothing under your beds. If there were, I would tell you.

      Satan was invented by men, because they felt "funny" worshipping a god that had just devastated a village of good people via a flood. They didn't want their god to be the one who did evil. So, Beelzebub was born.

      Consider: You believe god is all knowing. Yes?

      You believe god is all powerful. Yes?

      You believe everything written in the bible is true. Yes?

      You believe Satan is at least as intelligent as your average human. Yes?

      You believe Satan can read? Yes?

      Do you think Satan ever read the part, in the King James, where he loses the battle against god? What would be the point in continuing the battle, if the goal (victory?) ABSOLUTELY was not obtainable? I think this would be disheartening to any army. Even a band of fallen angels.

      Who, more than a fallen angel, would believe/know god was omniscient? Not to mention omnipotent. That would have been a stumbling block to any coup attempt. Right?

      So, rebellion would have been dumb of Satan and his band of angels. God would have said, "You will lose and you will lose your health insurance." End of rebellion, I think.

      These stories are fiction. Do you see that? What ent ity would rebel against an all powerful, all knowing god? You couldn't even sneak up on Him. Sheesh! Use your brain, just a little.

      What's funny, is that Christians bestow upon their god, the attributes of being omnibenevolent, omnipotent, and omniscient.
      Never mind that it is impossible for a god to be all those things at the same time.

      But, Christians never stop to think how these attributes affect their fairy tales. They never consider the ramifications resulting from these superlative qualities that they give to their god.

      Some have told me, that Satan knows he will be defeated. His goal is to take as many humans to hell with him as possible.
      But, Christians also say, their god is all knowing. If god can see the future, if the future can be known, He would know exactly how many souls will be lost and how many saved. He would know this, from the beginning. The number would be fixed.

      If god can know the future, Satan would be locked into his part. Like Judas and Peter, he would have no choice.

      If the predictions of the bible concerning Satan and the end times are true, then all the events and actions leading up to the fulfillment of these predictions, are predetermined. Predictions, cannot depend on chance.

      “For me, it is far better to grasp the universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”
      – Carl Sagan

      Ha, Ha, Ha! I laugh at you and your silly beliefs!

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • Ladervijd

      'democratic-capitalist' U.S., UK and Germany caused ten-millions of deaths, with thousands of murders and ten-thousands of road accident dead every year. So, your point being?

      "Do you think Satan ever read the part, in the King James, where he loses the battle against god?"

      Did you?
      Revelation 12
      http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/book.php?book=Revelation&chapter=12&verse=

      September 19, 2011 at 10:29 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      @Ladervijd: are you forgetting that you are arguing a book that we disagree with? that has been refuted numerous times as being accurate? how is it that you are too blind to see the facts that are set out that contradict that book?

      September 19, 2011 at 10:32 am |
    • Ladervijd

      TP,
      feel free to actually mention, or link to, these refutations and facts you speak of. i.e. in the Bible it says that there are trees with fruit, do you disagree with that?

      That not every folk story, or such as here, is scriptural, that is pretty much obvious.

      September 19, 2011 at 11:11 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Ladervijd

      I asked: "Do you think Satan ever read the part, in the King James, where he loses the battle against god?"

      You responded: "Did you?"

      Yes. It is obviously a work of fiction. Example: Revelation Chapter 12

      7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,

      8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.

      9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

      As I stated in my comment, Christians declare their god to be all powerful (omnipotent) and all knowing (omniscient). There would have been no war. God, with these superlative attributes,could not be surprised or defeated. He could not be wounded. Certainly Satan and his merry band of bad angels, would have know that. They would have known that better than any Christian, who has not lived in Heaven or been in the presence of god, or seen god. Right?

      Revelation talks about stars falling to earth:

      Revelation 6:13 – And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.

      The people, of the time, believed the heavenly bodies were about the size as they appear in the sky. The sun and moon about the size of basketballs. The stars, very small. They had no idea, that the stars were actually suns. They believed the earth was flat, held up by pillars. A dome enclosed this flat earth. The heavenly bodies were placed in the dome. God would walk about on top of this dome, from time to time.

      If it starts raining stars, it is going to break a lot of windshields. It is good that I have free glass.

      Revelation is a joke. Only a smidgen of critical thinking is necessary to understand this.

      There is no free will, if god is Omniscient. But, be of good cheer! We have free will, because god does not exist!

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • Ladervijd

      The mentioned battle being Michal vs. Satan. (Michal protecting the woman with child)

      And yes, before telescopes and such, it was rather difficult to differentiate various extra-terrestial bodies. "Moon below her feet" could be interpreted as poetry of female periodical cycles, and/or as her being all dizzy from birth pains.

      September 19, 2011 at 12:11 pm |
    • Reality

      "Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30] Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]

      September 19, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      You're such a phony Reality. I've answered this boring post of yours for months, yet you never have a conversation about your post as you post it on practically every new article on this site due to being spiritually dead.

      You wrote ""Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30] Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]"

      Answer: All the above listed men lived and died in another century. The Book of Revelation is written about your generation in end of days. Of course these men would have no clue how demented and perverted this generation would be! Those of us that live among you, however, know. These men wouldn't know what to think about automobiles, microwaves, computers etc. It would have been beyond their comprehension just as the Book of Revelation was to them. Jesus reveals more of His truth with each passing generation that seeks. He's been unraveling the Book of Revelation since 1948.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • .........

      Garbage alert hit report abuse to all reality posts

      September 20, 2011 at 8:12 pm |
    • Reality

      The Apostles' Creed 2011: (updated by yours truly and based on the studies of historians and theologians during the past 200 years)

      Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
      and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
      human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven??

      I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
      preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
      named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
      girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

      Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
      the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

      He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
      a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
      Jerusalem.

      Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
      many semi-fiction writers. A descent into Hell, a bodily resurrection
      and ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
      Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
      grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
      and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
      called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

      Amen

      September 20, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
  15. Mathilda

    Prayers for Kenya. Our planet is a failed state. With all the boasted technology, people are still starving to death while rich nations suffer from obesity and waste more food than what we actually consume. A screwed human race. Christians alone are helping the needy people as usual while atheists just jeer at them.

    September 18, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      Atheists help just as much as your morons do without the need to hold something over the heads of the needy (ie; if you want our help you must listen to our lies). Doctor's Without Borders is an example of a secular charity; other examples would be UNICEF; Amnesty International; Oxfam; PlanUSA (an organization committed to helping children, their families and communities in 49 developing countries around the world)...these really are not that hard to find...using google is rather simple but then again I must consider who I am speaking to-if it doesn't meld with your biblical belief it can't be good in your eyes. Oh well, we will continue to do good in this world without holding something over the heads of the needy.

      September 19, 2011 at 6:31 am |
    • Ladervijd

      "... without the need to hold something over the heads of the needy"

      "When we refer to authority we are referring to the laws of the land as set out by our ruling governments."
      (set out by const1tution)

      ?
      Are you saying that the organizations you mentioned are above the law?

      September 19, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      are you an idiot??? you think your churches are above the laws, we think nothing is!

      September 19, 2011 at 10:10 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Mathilda

      You said: "Prayers for Kenya. Our planet is a failed state. With all the boasted technology, people are still starving to death while rich nations suffer from obesity and waste more food than what we actually consume. A screwed human race. Christians alone are helping the needy people as usual while atheists just jeer at them."

      Many atheists are Humanists. We believe in the Golden Rule...which Jesus "borrowed" from others.

      Our planet is not in a failed state. Such thinking is wrong and dangerous.

      More scientists are working on the world's problems, than at any other time in history. Knowledge is snowballing.

      Check this out:
      It has a funny sounding name. So funny in fact, that you might be tempted to not take it seriously. It's called Plumpy’Nut.

      The kids here in Somalia just call it Plumpy. If you have never heard of it, you probably have never truly been hungry or lived in a country where malnutrition is prevalent. It has been called a magic potion, as big a development as penicillin, and is widely credited with single-handedly lowering mortality rates from famine in Africa.
      Source: eatocracy.cnn.com/2011/08/10/plumpynut

      Look up Plumpy’Nut. It was invented by pediatrician André Briend in 1996
      It is a 92 gram, 500 calorie foil sachet. It has nearly the perfect ingredients for the starving human body: Peanut paste, vegetable oil, milk powder, vitamins and minerals. It is a huge improvement over the way malnourished children were treated during the last major famine in Somalia. Back then, they were treated in thera_peutic feeding centers for up to a month with carefully diluted and measured fortified milk formulas. It was labor intensive and too many kids still died.

      Mathew 7: 7 – 11
      9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

      Hmm...

      About 25,000 people die every day of hunger or hunger-related causes, according to the United Nations. This is one person every three and a half seconds, as you can see on this display. Unfortunately, it is children who die most often.
      Source: Poverty.com

      The Christian god is very unlikely to exist.

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 10:12 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      @Ladervijd: get the posts straight that you are responding to...thus the reason for asking if you're an idiot! When I made the statement about authority, I was referring to Matilda's delusions that we hate authority...my response on her comment here had nothing to do with her previous comment. The organizations I mentioned do good and help...I mentioned them merely to prove to her that she is wrong.

      September 19, 2011 at 10:30 am |
    • Ladervijd

      TP,
      no, churches are pro-Law. My point being that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is like scripture too, and the UN like a church-inst1tution.

      September 19, 2011 at 10:44 am |
    • Ladervijd

      TP,
      fair enough. What i was on about i referred to in my previous post. And yeah, the statement that "Christians alone are helping" (as in only Christians are the ones helping) is false, albeit the statement that "Christians alone are helping" (as in Christians on their own are helping) is, respectivly seems, true.

      September 19, 2011 at 10:52 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      there is no question that there are good christians in this world...a great number of my family member's fall in to that category. I wish to only point out that good comes from all walks of life and all belief system's.

      September 19, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • Ladervijd

      Love itself does not require premise of any belief (system), though loving someone does not necessarily mean that one knows what is truly best for the loved one.

      "I wish to only point out that good comes from all walks of life and all belief system's."

      Similar with no-good. 🙂

      September 19, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      TruthPrevails, you seriously are demented and can't see the overall picture on anything, can you? Of course these organizations conduct charity work as taught by Jesus Christ. Who do you think were their family members that raised them? Practicing Christians.

      Clueless.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  16. when

    "A mind floating totally free from physical reality..." LOL! Whew! That's a good one. And THAT is supposed to disprove free will? The whole thing's a crock. Like they say, "Stand for nothing and you'll fall for anything!"

    September 18, 2011 at 9:36 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      sounds like religion

      September 19, 2011 at 10:32 am |
  17. when

    Free will is real. God is real. And you cannot prove otherwise.

    September 18, 2011 at 9:25 pm |
    • thinkforyourself

      The flying spaghetti monster is real, and you can't prove otherwise.

      September 18, 2011 at 9:43 pm |
    • Mathilda

      Atheists think about spaghetti too much. Their brains must be composed of spaghetti. Italy's ill are due to atheism as such is the case for all European nations.

      September 18, 2011 at 10:54 pm |
    • Reality

      Mathilda, the redneck lady of many names, continues to spout from her den of inanity !!!

      September 18, 2011 at 11:40 pm |
    • News Flash

      And your saying it, over and over proves nothing. You can't prove it either, and obviously can't even try.

      September 18, 2011 at 11:58 pm |
    • Patel

      I feel sure that many have tried and failed throughout history. With no god, any god can be posited and work just as well as the others. That's why there have been so many religions throughout history.
      When you can clearly see that there is no pattern that makes any sense to essentially random events, there is one answer to why that is:: None of these gods exist. There is only random stuff. Humans have evolved to seek answers to unknowns.
      Curiosity is questioning. If you don't want to see what kind of stuff your god can do, not even to prove it to atheists who would love to see it, then how sad that you do not have any curiosity about your own religion. It came from somewhere.
      Look at the journey your religion has taken through history. It is not a good religion. It has no self-evidence.

      September 19, 2011 at 12:57 am |
    • HeavenSent

      When, the heathens on this blog truly believe the ways of the world.

      Psalms 9:15-17

      15 The heathen are sunk down in the pit [that] they made: in the net which they hid is their own foot taken.

      16 The LORD is known [by] the judgment [which] he executeth: the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands. Higgaion. Selah.

      17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, [and] all the nations that forget God.

      Amen.

      September 19, 2011 at 2:00 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      and you can't prove god is real either!

      September 19, 2011 at 6:31 am |
    • David Johnson

      @when

      You said: "Free will is real. God is real. And you cannot prove otherwise."

      I agree with you, that humans have free will. But, there could not be free will if an all knowing god exists.

      Omniscient – 1. : having infinite awareness, understanding, and insight. 2. : possessed of universal or complete knowledge.
      Source: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/omniscient

      If god can see future, then everything is predetermined. It cannot be changed, or god is not omniscient.

      Some have said that: "Yes, god can see the future, but we still make our own choices." But, in actuality, there was only 1 choice. The choice that an all knowing god, could "see".

      Rather than being predetermined, all events and actions may have been predestined by god. If this is true, then god "decided" if you would be damned or saved, at the beginning of time. We may be nothing more than puppets... actors in a play, performing our roles.

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
    • Ladervijd

      "If god can see future, then everything is predetermined."

      One doesn't need to be a mystical seer or such to know that when an item is dropped from second floor in Terra gravity, that it will fall on the ground (unless there is a string, or the item gets carried away by wind, or such). True that i.e. a part of car engine has its function, with no free will, and after it breaks it gets replaced. A car engine is a rather simple thing though.

      Personally, i am not mad at human (minds) for not being capable of grasping G-d, i.e. as in ordering a pizza and getting one. And, scepticism, inquiry, is alright (to an extent). Though, G-d is way above, respectivly outside, our little intellectual preceptions of space, time, etc. Trying to 'create' G-d to your image is similar to trying to squezze jack in the box.

      Also, when a teacher decides in the morning to give pupils a random test that day, then everyone who will be in class that day will be writing that test, though likely with very different results. Life isn't just about tests though of course.

      September 20, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
    • Ladervijd

      i.e. Judas, two interpretations of the him and the 'treason' could be either,
      – Judas was a tool, or a pi3ce on a chess-board, to a bigger scheme of things, and/or
      – Judas was pre-determined to a course of action based on his nature (and based on circ-umstances), with his 'role' being the one pre-determined regardless of the actual actor

      So or so, even if we, as in the few persons here on this discussion board, would agree on one summary, it doesn't necessarily make it ultimately true, nor does it anyhow help persons who are without food pre-determined to die by starvation.

      September 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
  18. when

    Yes there IS free will! We use it every day to make our decisions. We have free will to decide what to wear, where to go, who to marry (or not) etc. No one decides it for us, unless you're incarcerated, in the military or living under a despot but even then we still have our free will in some things.

    September 18, 2011 at 8:59 pm |
    • thinkforyourself

      Free will is real, but don't pretend that we are the only creatures that have it. Get a pet dog or cat and tell me they don't have free will.

      September 18, 2011 at 9:42 pm |
    • Muneef

      Intruding I will say Pet Cats and Dogs have a free will but still have a belt round their necks adding straps to Dogs...!? Rather I would think that such as those cats and dogs in the wild are more free willed than those in the city...!

      Looking at it at this angle I can tell you that;
      Men with out Neckties look far more "Freewilled or say Wild".
      Men wearing Bow Ties look more like domesticated cats and have a limited free will.
      Men with Long Necktie look like dogs or sheep with starps...meaning having having less Free will of choice....

      September 18, 2011 at 10:32 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      "when
      Yes there IS free will! We use it every day to make our decisions. We have free will to decide what to wear, where to go, who to marry (or not) etc. No one decides it for us, unless you're incarcerated, in the military or living under a despot but even then we still have our free will in some things."

      Where is there free will in religion?
      1) being gay or lesbian is a free will thing while being purely natural but yet religion condemns it constantly
      2) the right to have control over ones own body (ie; a womans' right to use birth control or abort a zygote) is free will but yet the religious condemn it
      3) the right to teach our children evolution is free will but religions condemn it
      4) the right not to put our money towards the church but yet again another thing condemned

      Religion does not allow for free will...there is always and always will be a noose around the neck of those within...the threat of eternal da.mnation for 'sinning' or for falling away from the teaching in the buybull do not indicate free will.

      Free Will can be defined as the ability to make a choice without coercion...once again religion does not allow for this.

      September 19, 2011 at 7:09 am |
    • David Johnson

      @TruthPrevails

      Christians say, "Free will is given to man, by God". Each person can choose to accept god's love and spend eternity in Heaven or to reject god and spend eternity being tortured in Hell. How is that freedom of choice when it is the same thing as The Godfather, making you an offer you cannot refuse?

      The problem with free will is, that Christians have insisted on their god being Omniscient, Omnipotent, and Omnibenevolent.
      No god can be all three at the same time. The attributes contradict each other.

      If god knows what He will do in the future and because He is Omnipotent, does something else, then He is not omniscient.
      If god knows what He will do in the future and cannot do something else, then He is not omnipotent.
      See the problem?

      If God knows the future, if the future can be known, that means that the future is predictable and unchangeable. This, in turn, means that our actions are predetermined. If god is all knowing, free will is an illusion.
      This also binds god, in that He knows what he will do in the future, and He must do it.

      Let's look at Jesus and his predictions that Judas would betray him and Peter would deny him.

      Those were future events. Do you think Judas could have used his free will to opt out? Not, if Jesus/God was omniscient. Same goes for Peter.
      The actions of Peter and Judas were predetermined. They had no choice.

      When Moses was attempting to secure the release of the Jews from Egypt, God repeatedly "hardens Pharaoh's heart". God did not allow Pharaoh to release the Jews, until He had delivered His 10 plagues upon the Egyptian people. Pharaoh didn't have free will. The Egyptian people, who suffered the plagues, didn't either.

      Biblical prophecy would not be possible, unless events and human actions were predetermined and there is no free will.
      The fulfillment of a prophecy cannot be left to random chance.

      What about the child who is murdered by a monster, or a people slaughtered by a stronger opponent (or a god)?
      Did they choose to be harmed? Where was their free will? These acts show that the strong or the people in power have greater free will than their victims. Hmm... Isn't this a lot like what would happen if there was no god?

      If god has a "plan for each of us", if there is an agenda, then that pretty much rules out free will.

      "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." [Jeremiah 29:11]

      "You saw me before I was born and scheduled each day of my life before I began to breathe. Every day was recorded in your book!" [Psalm 139:16]

      You might argue, that while god has a plan for each of us, He doesn't force us to follow this plan. The problem with this argument, is that if a person does not follow god's plan, it may affect my ability to follow god's plan. A drunk driver may run me down. A robber may shoot me. My plan would be cancelled.

      Ephesians 1:11 "We have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will."

      "this man [Christ Jesus] delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God" (Acts 2:23a NASB).
      The 5 point Calvinists believe our fates are sealed, even before we are born. This would mean that god allows humans to be born, knowing they will someday burn forever. Seems wrong to me, even for a mysterious god.

      There is no evidence that a god gives or safeguards free will. In fact, there is much evidence to the contrary.

      Humans have free will not because of god, but because god does not exist.

      Cheers!

      September 19, 2011 at 10:19 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      @David: thank you for the enlightenment...it is appreciated 🙂

      September 19, 2011 at 10:34 am |
    • Ladervijd

      omniscient – knowing everything
      omnipotent – able to do anything
      omnibenevolence – all good
      and free will in aware sciential living beings (i.e. mammals), do not exclude themselves.

      True though, "free will" is a philosophical concept.

      "This also binds god, in that He knows what he will do in the future, and He must do it."

      Similar to what is said in Luke 4:9-11, huh?

      September 19, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • May

      Subject change! Bringing up quotes from the bible is leading to the issue of misinterpretation! We do not need that kind of criticism!

      September 19, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • Ladervijd

      *not meaning that every one of mammal would be sciential, aware, etc.

      September 19, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      David Johnson, you don't get tortured in hell for eternity (LOL). Jesus just blots you out. No more soul for you and with that blotting out, no one has memories of the likes of you.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  19. when

    Wow! Somebody needs to take their pro zac! What is with all the nasty name calling? Ranting and raving? Good Grief! No intelligence in that!

    September 18, 2011 at 8:38 pm |
    • TruthPrevails

      maybe if you would stop shoving your delusions down our throats we would treat you a little better but it is all we hear....you claim a god exists then prove it...extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence (Carl Sagan)

      September 19, 2011 at 6:33 am |
    • HeavenSent

      TruthPrevails, look in the mirror. Can you see your reflection? If so, you just witnessed two miracles. Sight and the miracle of creation.

      Amen.

      September 20, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  20. ?

    what?

    September 18, 2011 at 8:30 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.