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On religion, Capitol freshmen are more diverse than their incumbent colleagues
January 4th, 2013
06:35 AM ET

On religion, Capitol freshmen are more diverse than their incumbent colleagues

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN)– The 113th Congress is being heralded for its number of women and minorities, but that diversity extends to religion, too. Newly revised numbers released by The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life show the 113th Congress' freshmen class is more religiously diverse than the lawmakers they will be joining in Congress.

While 57.6% of incumbents, a majority of Congress, identify as Protestants, that number is lower among freshmen legislators, of whom 48.2% identify as Protestants, according to the study. Additionally, there are more unaffiliated, Unitarian, Hindu and Buddhists in the 113th Congress freshman class than in classes before.

These numbers were updated by Pew after House seats were finalized and the new members of Congress were sworn in.

This increase in diversity means a number of religious firsts for Capitol Hill: the first Hindu to serve in either legislative body, the first Buddhist to serve in the Senate and the first member of either chamber to describe their religion as "none."

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Hawaii Democrat Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, the first Hindu elected to Congress, took Thursday's oath of office on the Bhagavad Gita, an essential piece of Hindu scripture. Her candidacy and electoral victory was heralded by the Hindu community, especially political groups, across the country.


Tulsi Gabbard speaks on stage with other female members of Congress during day one of the Democratic National Convention.

For Gabbard, the emphasis Hindus put on service is what she brings with her to Congress.

"What I bring from my practice is a great importance and motivation on service and I think that really is the most important focus as we head into the 113th Congress," Gabbard said at an event honoring the women of the Democratic caucus on Thursday. "If we keep that at the forefront then I know we will be headed in a good direction."

In addition to being the first Hindu in Congress, Gabbard shares a first because of her service in the military. She and Illinois Democratic Rep. Tammy Duckworth, another freshman, are the first female combat veterans to serve in Congress.

Standing outside the Capitol on a brisk Washington morning, Gabbard said: "Those personal experiences and the background that I bring give me great opportunity to be of service not only to the people of Hawaii and the people of our country."

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Hawaii also elected the first Buddhist to the Senate in Democratic Sen. Mazie Hirono. In an interview with the Huffington Post, Hirono said, "There need to be many more of us in here. I am going to make sure that happens."

Although religious diversity has increased in both legislative bodies, that does not mean Congress is directly representative of the entire faith community.

While the entire United States is 48% Protestant, according to Pew, 56.1% of the members of Congress identify with that faith. Additionally, Catholics, Mormons and Jews are all overrepresented when compared to the percentage of American adults who identify with each faith.

Some faiths are also underrepresented. While 17% of America is Baptist, 13.7% of the 113th Congress identifies as such.

The starkest gap is among the unaffiliated - a group that includes atheists, agnostics and people who choose not to affiliate with an organized religion. Though 20% of the population falls into this group, only one member, Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, identifies as a "none."

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Politics

soundoff (332 Responses)
  1. lionlylamb

    Many folks want to tear apart the Biblical securities issues of common believers whose only wants are to believe in an afterlife of which they may be assured into having. The 'rightly dividing the word of truth' being the Gospels are the main issues for all people to endure upon and in listing the word of truth, being the Gospels for its truth worth is the way for all folks to be pondering, not dissembling upon vitrifying ways breaking apart into socialistic differences laying waste to common agendas of scriptural differentiations. 2Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

    January 4, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
    • .

      more drivel ramblings from the belief blog idiot.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • +

      lionlylamb, wisdom always goes over the nonbelievers heads. Spot just proved it.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • .

      + just proved how stupid religious people are.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
  2. Barry Obama, community organizer

    These people that still cling to their guns and religion are a threat to our overall national security.

    January 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      religion and guns... just as bad as alcohol and guns.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
    • truly......

      Aye that...maybe worse, with alcohol at least you ll come out of it

      Religion keeps ramping up until you think that bombing a clinic or marketplace is the road to heaven...

      January 4, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
  3. Bootyfunk

    religion is going away, slowly but surely. the internet, fact checking and education are taking away religion's power. the youth aren't fooled, less religious than any other generation before. christianity is destined to join the other mythologies...

    January 4, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • Bob

      Let's hope it dissolves around the world, then we can achieve world peace.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Ridding the world of religious venerations could be quite caustic toward commonalities of mainframe ideologies beneficiaries keeping together the parted ways of sincere civilities and also moralists demeanors all of which clasp ever increasingly upon shared commonalities. It is not who will win their freedoms but rather why give freedoms are to be tomorrow's fruits of socialistic capitalisms now encircling as being the buzzards of politicalized moralism.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • .

      LL the belief blog rambling idiot.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • +

      Bootyfunk, that's why you are on this belief blog 24/7 discussing Jesus' truth. LOL. You're a joke.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
    • .

      @+ you just showed your a liar since it's impossible to be on here 24/7, what an idiot.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
  4. Us politicians NEED religion....

    ...go easy on us man! We use religion in both parties....

    Republicans: to get all the poor and powerless to vote against their own interests... "Trickle down economics may be an epic fail, but they is fer Jesus, man!"

    Democrats: Much more secular crowd...catches all the people that dont swing the Republican way.

    Two party system merged into one party along time ago.... they want us all to vote to maintain the illusion, Is all corporate money now on both sides..the massive costs effectively remove grass roots or individuals from challenging the rich.
    This is why atheists will be discouraged from taking the important offices. We (all of us) are so screwed....

    January 4, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
  5. Topher

    Good morning, everyone. Found this online and thought it might be helpful for those who think you can't trust the Bible ...

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXSCwf9F6BI&w=640&h=390]

    January 4, 2013 at 11:36 am |
    • SImran

      Forget the Bible.

      Enrich your life with Vedas...

      [vimeo 29454120 w=500 h=375]

      January 4, 2013 at 11:39 am |
    • Seyedibar

      I'm waiting to see how you can use this argument to justify talking donkeys or god murdering 42 children for laughing at a bald head. Perhaps you can use it to justify why the ancient hebrews worshiped 18 gods who they believed lived here on earth with them and used their hands to build things.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • The Truth

      1. Global Flood – didn't happen. None of this videos excuses solves that giant error.
      2. Time frame from Adam to Noah spelled out in Genesis. No amount of word twisting and spelling errors could account for this gaping hole in the bibles logic. If it was divinely inspired there would be an accurate description of the time frame from the first humans to when Moses was writing it down.
      3. Number of animals on the ark, numerically impossible to have the species that exist today born from the few Noah would have been able to save.
      4. Gaping holes in history – Adam on a T-Rex...

      It is not the job of the reader to figure out a way to make the pieces of the bible fit together by using the scotch tape of faith as this video is suggesting. I could take Lord of the Rings and with enough explanation of allegory and claiming this word means that or vice versus I could turn that into a supposedly historical record of the pre-flood era, do you have proof that Morgoth didn't exist before the flood or that elves or goblins didn't? So why not just take it on faith like you do your bible?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
    • ME II

      @Topher,
      Cute video, but just because some issues in the Bible can be explained with these 'techniques' does not mean all can be. Some examples being, the order of creation, extra long days, inconsistent lineages and dates.
      Essentially, in order to "trust" something in the Bible as accurate, it needs to verified independently.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • Topher

      ME II

      "Cute video, but just because some issues in the Bible can be explained with these 'techniques' does not mean all can be."

      I agree not everything can be with this technique, but most are.

      "Some examples being, the order of creation, extra long days, inconsistent lineages and dates."

      extra long days?

      "Essentially, in order to "trust" something in the Bible as accurate, it needs to verified independently."

      How?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Smithsonian

      The stories found in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 1-12, such as the flood story, the record is quite different: the time period under consideration is much more ancient. The factual bases of the stories are hidden from our view archaeologically. The stories remain a part of folk traditions and were included in the Bible to illustrate and explain theological ideas such as: Where did humans come from? If humans were created by God (who is perfect and good), how did evil among them come to be? If we are all related as children of God, why do we speak different languages? It must be remembered that the Bible is primarily a book of religion, a guide to faith. it was not a book of history, poetry, economics, or science. It contains all sorts of literary genre, which are used to teach about the relationship between God and mankind. Even biblical history is edited history: events were chosen to illustrate the central theme of the Bible. The Biblical writers did not pretend they were giving a complete history; instead they constantly refer us to other sources for full historical details, sources such as "The Annals of the Kings of Judah" (or Israel).

      It is therefore not possible to try to "prove" the Bible by means of checking its historical or scientific accuracy. The only "proof" to which it can be subjected is this: Does it correctly portray the God-human relationship? In the best analysis, the Bible is a religious book, not an historical document.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Smithsonian

      “The stories remain a part of folk traditions and were included in the Bible to illustrate and explain theological ideas”
      Then, everything in the Bible should be taken as what they are – folklore.
      “It is therefore not possible to try to "prove" the Bible by means of checking its historical or scientific accuracy. The only "proof" to which it can be subjected is this: Does it correctly portray the God-human relationship?”
      The most important question – Does it correctly potray the God-human relationship? Now there are 2 solid problems there:
      1. Does a God exist to have a relationship with him/her/ it / they??? And if there is a God, what is the nature of the God? – Some say God is omnipotent, omnipresent, omnibenevolent, omniscient! That brings us to the second problem...
      2. Does the Bible correctly potray the relationship with God? If God has the said characteristics, why do we need to be saved? Why do we need to sin, suffer and repent? Can’t this said God already make a perfect world?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      there are unicorns in the bible. and dragons. and satyrs. also a talking donkey, like in Shrek. and a guy lives in the belly of a whale, like in Pinocchio. the bible is silly and not to be taken seriously.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      "If humans were created by God (who is perfect and good), how did evil among them come to be"
      that's an easy one. guess you haven't read your bible. god created evil:

      Isaiah 45:7
      I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • Topher

      Unicorn = rhinoceros
      Dragon = dinosaur

      January 4, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • Pete

      "Unicorn = rhinoceros
      Dragon = dinosaur"

      Excuses, excuses doesn't make it fact.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • Topher

      What excuses?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      there were no dinosaurs around, so couldn't have been.
      unicorns look more like horses than rhinos - they were very familiar with horses, they wouldn't have made that mistake.
      and what about satyrs?
      and also c.cokatrice?

      and more excuses?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
    • ME II

      "extra long days?"
      "The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day." (Joshua 10:13)

      "How?"
      The order of the development of life on this planet is written in the rocks, which is independent of and contradicts the Bible.
      Stopping the Earth's rotation for a day and then restarting it for Joshua would cause massive world wide catastrophes that would be evident in the geologic record as well as human historical records which are independent of the Bible.
      etc.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      the bible says there was an earth before the sun and plants before the sun. the bible says the earth is flat. the bible thinks the night sky is a dome with stars planted in it.

      read the introduction in any high school science text book. congratulations, you now have more useful knowledge than in all of the bible.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • Topher

      Bootyfunk

      "there were no dinosaurs around, so couldn't have been."

      I didn't realize you were there. My mistake. ;)

      Job chapter 40 describes dinosaurs.

      "unicorns look more like horses than rhinos – they were very familiar with horses, they wouldn't have made that mistake."

      Rhinoceros's scientific name is "Rhinoceros unicornis"

      January 4, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      were you there? LOL.
      dinosaurs and humans never existed together. you are aware of that fact? or are you a creationist?

      and one species of rhino is named Rhinoceros unicornis - from India. people in the middle east never saw them. besides, that's just greek naming convention of the scientist that named the species. again - LOL.

      try harder to make excuses.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • Topher

      Bootyfunk

      "dinosaurs and humans never existed together. you are aware of that fact? or are you a creationist?"

      Not a fact. And what part of "fundamentalist" makes you think I'm not a creationist? :)

      "and one species of rhino is named Rhinoceros unicornis – from India. people in the middle east never saw them. besides, that's just greek naming convention of the scientist that named the species."

      Now who's making excuses?

      try harder to make excuses.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • Really??

      Topher
      It is a fact that dinosaurs and humans never existed together. Just because you don't beleive it because you'd rather believe your book of fairy tales doesn't change the scientifally proven fact.
      Discarding science in favor of religion is irrational and unreasonable, just like your faith.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      so you believe dinosaurs and humans existed at the same time? you're kidding, right? you just ignore all evidence? LOL!

      who's making excuses? i'm taking the bible at what it says - unicorns and dragons. the bible says there are unicorns, dragon, satyrs and c.ockatrice. YOU are trying to say they were mistaken for other creatures. YOU are making excuses.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • Topher

      Really??

      "It is a fact that dinosaurs and humans never existed together."

      There's plenty of evidence to believe man and dinosaurs lived together. Why don't you think they did?

      "Just because you don't beleive it because you'd rather believe your book of fairy tales doesn't change the scientifally proven fact."

      True, I believe God's word over man's.

      "Discarding science in favor of religion is irrational and unreasonable, just like your faith."

      I don't disregard all science. Just the stuff that keeps changing its story.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      From the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia:

      RHINOCEROS

      ri-nos'-er-os:

      This word is found in the King James Version margin to Isaiah 34:7 ("rhinocerots") for re'emim, the King James Version "unicorns," the Revised Version (British and American) "wild-oxen." The word is quite inappropriate to the passage, which refers to the land of Edom. The one-horned rhinoceros, Rhinoceros unicornis, is confined to India. Other rhinoceroses are found in India and in equatorial Africa, but it is hardly to be presumed that these animals were meant by the Hebrew writers.

      Now where is this one-horned rhinoceros found? Wikipedia for you.....
      One-horned rhinos once ranged across the entire northern part of the Indian subcontinent, along the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra River basins, from Pakistan to the Indian-Burmese border, including parts of Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan. They may have also existed in Myanmar, southern China and Indochina.
      Fossils of Rhinoceros unicornis appear in the Middle Pleistocene. In the Pleistocene, the genus Rhinoceros ranged throughout South and Southeast Asia, with specimens located on Sri Lanka. Into the Holocene, some rhinoceros lived as far west as Gujarat and Pakistan until as recently as 3,200 years ago.

      The Indian rhinoceros was the first rhino widely known outside its range. The first rhinoceros to reach Europe in modern times arrived in Lisbon on May 20, 1515. King Manuel I of Portugal planned to send the rhinoceros to Pope Leo X, but the rhino perished in a shipwreck. Before dying, the rhino had been sketched by an unknown artist. The German artist Albrecht Dürer saw the sketches and descriptions and carved a woodcut of the rhino, known ever after as Dürer's Rhinoceros. Though the drawing had some anatomical inaccuracies (notably the hornlet protruding from the rhino's shoulder), his sketch became the enduring image of a rhinoceros in western culture for centuries.
      The British public had their first chance to view a rhinoceros (presumably this species) in 1683; it unknowingly caused a political row when the notorious Judge Jeffreys, in one of his lighter moments, spread a rumour that his chief rival, Lord Guildford, had been seen riding on it.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • Really??

      Topher
      Show this alleged evidence that creatures who lived and died millions of years ago, lived with humans who have only lived for ~200,000 years.
      Do not reference religious materials as they have no scientific worth.
      do not reference religiously biased psuedo-science.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      @Topher
      "There's plenty of evidence to believe man and dinosaurs lived together. Why don't you think they did?"
      such as?

      "I don't disregard all science. Just the stuff that keeps changing its story."
      that's the beauty of science. if science finds out an answer is wrong, they admit they're wrong and change it. unlike religion, who can never admit it's wrong. science is always willing to update it's answers according to new information and research - unlike religion. point for science.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • sam

      Sometimes I just weep for humanity and how willingly ignorant so many choose to be. Even when something's been proven with glaringly obvious evidence, we're always going to have a subsect of society that refuses to understand. It hurts my brain.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
    • Topher

      Really??

      First, I reject your fallacy that I can't use the Bible to describe anything scientific. Second, I also reject that the earth has been here millions of years for dinosaurs to have been here that long ago. As it was pointed out, I'm a young-earth creationist. I get this because not only is that what the Bible teaches, but because MOST dating mechanisms point to a young earth. Yeah, I know, not all.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      Man and dinosaurs coexisted???
      However much I may love FLINTSTONES, they will still remain cartoon characters!!!

      The possibility of some dinosaur breeds surviving extinction does not invalidate evolutionary theory at all. Nor does the existence of unknown creatures.
      According to modern biology, dinosaurs did and do coexist with mankind... just in the form of modern birds (which are taxonomically dinosaurs if they descended from them), the last known surviving branch of the dinosaurs.
      Creationists who make this claim generally reject the bird/dinosaur connection, and therefore mean to say that humans co-existed with the likes of tyrannosaurs and ankylosaurs and so on. Yet they cannot explain why there are no remains of dinosaurs (let alone many other extinct animals of prehistory) found mixed alongside of remains of humans, ice age animals, and modern animals. According to the fossil record, the last non-avian dinosaur died out approximately 65 million years ago, which is about 58 million years before the first man ever appeared on earth. The only dinosaurs ever to have walked with man are birds such as ostriches, emus, penguins, robins, and storks to name a few. All non- avian dinosaurs, which lived during the time period known as the Mesozoic Era, which spans between 250-65 million years ago. This era is divided into 3 periods, the Triassic, the Jurassic and the Cretaceous. No saurian remains, be they of pterosaur, ichthyosaur, plesiosaur, mosasaur, or pliosaur, have ever been found above the Mesozoic strata mixed with elephants, mammoths, rhinoceroses, monkeys, smilodon, dolphins, whales, oxen, etc. (except a hadrosaur leg bone that was found in Early Paleocene (Danian) strata dating from 64.5 million years ago but note this fossil came from the vary beginning of the Cenozoic era long before humans or even most modern orders of mammals appeared.) let alone with humans. Nor have they ever been found below the Mesozoic strata strata with trilobites, or other Paleozoic organisms, nor can they demonstrate the falsity of radiometric dating methods whose results demonstrate that the time-lapse between humans and dinosaurs, especially Tyrannosaurs and Ankylosaurs is measured in tens of millions of years.
      Creationists eagerly jump at legends that suggest even the most remote suggestion that non-avian dinosaurs coexisted with humans, even though there have been no genuine artifacts that showed some sort of human-dinosaur interaction (i.e., saddles or jewelry specifically made for dinosaurs, paintings, carvings or statues that accurately depict dinosaurs with humans), or contemporary dinosaur remains artificially interred, with or without human remains in a grave of some sort, or contemporary dinosaur remains that show signs of having been eaten or butchered by humans.
      There has been absolutely no fossil evidence whatsoever that any of the mammals that humans are contemporaries of, i.e., dogs, cats, cows, elephants, rabbits, horses, other humans, etc, were also contemporaries of dinosaurs. Creationists have also failed repeatedly to provide any evidence of modern mammals and dinosaurs interacting together beyond misinterpretations of a few passages of the Bible.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      So you are a young-earth creationist then?
      How old do you think earth is?

      January 4, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      "MOST dating mechanisms point to a young earth. Yeah, I know, not all."
      such as? please post a web address to back your claim.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
    • Topher

      Bootyfunk

      "that's the beauty of science. if science finds out an answer is wrong, they admit they're wrong and change it."

      So what you are saying is that you can never tell me anything is scientific fact because there's a great likely-hood it will change.

      "unlike religion, who can never admit it's wrong. science is always willing to update it's answers according to new information and research – unlike religion. point for science."

      I don't care much for "religion" either. That's just fallible man putting what he "thinks" into what God has already told us. That's why I'll stick with God's word, even when it seems like science has a different answer. God's word doesn't change. Point for God.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • ME II

      @Topher,
      "... MOST dating mechanisms point to a young earth."
      I wasn't aware of any that pointed to a young earth, which ones do?

      January 4, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
    • Lori

      "hat's why I'll stick with God's word, even when it seems like science has a different answer. God's word doesn't change. Point for God."

      "Unicorn = rhinoceros
      Dragon = dinosaur"

      but you've already tried to change the word of your God. ;-)

      January 4, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Really??

      Topher
      You reject science, provable, solid fact, and take your belief in myths instead. You are a fool.
      I'm done with this guy.
      You can't reason with an idiot.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      You believe in God's word then! Now, where did you find this God's word? Did he speak to you?

      Apparently, there were people here in the East (5000 yrs before your Bible writers) who heard a different version of earth's origin from God!!!

      Vedas say that before the creation of the universe Lord Vishnu is sleeping in the ocean of all causes. His bed is a giant serpent with thousands of cobra like hoods. By the way, in the trinity of Creator, Maintainer and Destroyer as mentioned in the vedas, Lord Vishnu is the maintainer. Brahma is the creator and Shiva the destroyer.
      While Vishnu is asleep, a lotus sprouts of his navel (note that navel is symbolised as the root of creation!). Inside this lotus, Brahma resides. Brahma represents the universe which we all live in, and it is this Brahma who creates life forms.
      Now take a break here. Vishnu is the personification of the eternal multiverse that exists forever without any beginning or end. Brahma is the personification of our temporary physical universe that was created in the big bang.
      Brahma is said to have been created from the navel (which is a single point) of Vishnu, described as a lotus blooming out of the navel, much like our big bang universe. Now this universe represented by Brahma is not a permanent universe, it is temporary, Brahma lives for 100 years say the vedas and then dies and then a new universe (Brahma) is born.
      So as per vedas our universe lives for 100 years. Later we shall see how long each year of Brahma is.
      For now, brahma represents our universe which has birth and death, a big bang and a big cruch, from a navel singularity. Vishnu represents the eternity that lies beyond our universe which has no birth or death and that which is eternal! Many such universes like ours exist in Vishnu.
      Vedas say that thousands of brahmas have passed away! In other words, this is not the first time universe has been created.
      Let us come back to the time measurements now. Brahma lives for hundred years say vedas and we are in the first day of the 51st year of the brahma.
      A Year of Brahma
      By the way each year of Brahma has 360 days. And we are in the first day of the 51st year of our current brahma. Vedas also say that Lord Hanuman will be the next Brahma. Well, thats something I have to do some research into later, the more things to think about, the more happy and occupied I am
      Coming back to a day of the Brahma. Well, there is day and night. Vedas say that during the day Brahma is busy in creation of life and during the night all life he created is absorbed back into him! So we will be there only for this day of Brahma, which is the first day of his 51st year. But dont feel sad, let me promise you, this is a pretty long day.
      A day of Brahma
      Each day of brahma is called a Kalpa, and this itself is very huge a number. No wonder, ancient Indians had to be perfect in mathematics before going into all these things.
      A kalpa is made up of brahma’s one day and one night.
      Manvantaras

      The day has 14 Manvantaras. Similarly the night has an equal 14 Manvantaras. But then Brahma is resting in the night, so lets get back to the day again. We are in the 7th Manvantara of Brahma’s this day, say the vedas.
      MahaYuga
      Each Manvantara is made up of 71 Mahayuga. We are in the 28th Mahayuga of this Manvantara say the vedas.
      A Mahayuga is a collection of 4 Yugas. Maha means giant or huge.
      The 4 yugas are Satya Yuga (also called Krita Yuga), Treta Yuga, Dwapara Yuga, Kali Yuga. We are in the Kaliyuga of our current Mahayuga say the vedas.
      Satya Yuga lasts for 40% of its Mahayuga – Age of divine where humans need no physical means to exist and are in direct contact with the God
      Treta Yuga lasts for 30% of its Mahayuga – Age where bad deeds start appearing, still there is lot of truth, infact 3/4 of this age is still goodness
      Dwapara Yuga lasts for 20% of its Mahayuga-Dwapara means after the second, where there are almost equal amount of good and bad
      Kali Yuga lasts for 10% of its Mahayuga- Kali means Darkness in Sanskrit (not to be confused with Kaali which is godess), no wonder we are in this age
      Now finally we have reached to a timescale which we can relate to our own years.
      1 Kaliyuga = 432000 solar years!
      A Kaliyuga has the length of one Yuga. So One Mahayuga has 10 Yugas of which four are in Satya Yuga, 3 in Treta Yuga, 2 in Dwapara and 1 in Kali Yuga.
      So a Mahayuga = 10 times the Kaliyuga i.e 4,320,000 solar years
      Calculations
      Let us do some reverse calculations now to find out the age of the universe as per the vedas.
      1 Mahayuga = 4,320,000 years
      1 Manvantara = 71 Mahayugas
      1 day of Brahma = 14 Manvantaras = 994 Mahayugas
      Now a small addition here, Vedas also say that before and after each Manvantara there is a gap equivalent to 4 Yugas (Not MahaYugas).
      So now, 1 day of Brahma = 14 Manvantaras + (15 x 4 Yugas)
      = 994 Mahayugas + 60 Yugas
      = 994 Mahayugas + 6 MahaYugas = 1000
      So 1 day of Brahma = 1000 MahaYugas = 4,320,000,000 years
      1 night is again 1000 MahaYugas = = 4,320,000,000 years
      1 Complete day = day + night = 8,640,000,000 years = 8.64 billion years
      Note that we are in the 7th Manvantara of this day. So let us calculate how many years have passed since today started for Brahma.
      Step 1: For 6 Manvantaras we have 71x 6 = 426 Mahayugas
      Step 2: Then we have the gaps between each Manvantara which is 7 x 4 Yugas = 2.8 MahaYugas
      Step 3: Then we have the current Mahayuga in our Manvantara which is 28th, we are in the last 1/10 of it (Remember Kaliyuga is the last of 4 yugas and spans 1/10 of a Mahayuga). So it is 27.9 Mahayugas.
      So all put together we have 426+2.8+27.9 = 456.7 Mahayugas have been already spent in current day of Brahma. Approximately 543 more to go before we all are absorbed back into the Brahma
      Okay so 456.7 in terms of years is 456.7 x 4,320,000 = 1,972,944,456 which is about 2 billion years. Somewhat close to what evolution proposes for life on earth.
      Age of the Universe
      Now lets find out the age of our universe as per the vedas. Let us consider the age of the Brahma to be the age of the universe. This is one number which no modern theory can even come anywhere near to it.
      As we saw earlier a day of Brahma has 2000 MahaYugas (day+night).
      There are 360 days in a year for Brahma and we are in the first day of 51st year.
      So far 360 x 50= 18000 days have passed for Brahma
      This is equivalent to 18000 x 2000 x 4320000 Human Years
      In other words 155,520,000,000,000 Human Years
      Add the current day of Brahma which is 1,972,944,456 Humans Years
      So as per the vedas, the current age of the universe is 155,521,972,944,456 Years which is about 155,522 billion years !!! Modern day science has been able to predict age of our universe to be only about 15-20 billion years!

      January 4, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      "So what you are saying is that you can never tell me anything is scientific fact because there's a great likely-hood it will change."
      as new information comes in, yes. science will keep updating, adding new knowledge and information as it is discovered/becomes available. scary, huh?

      "That's why I'll stick with God's word, even when it seems like science has a different answer. God's word doesn't change. Point for God."
      yup, even when the bible is proven wrong, you still claim the wrong answer is the right answer. not sure there's much help for you... you're basically saying, no matter the evidence, you will never change your mind. even if you're proven wrong - you'll never change your mind. way to go! point for ignorance!

      January 4, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
    • SImran

      And Topher doesnot want to engage with me!!! How sad! Really!

      January 4, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Topher

      Simran

      Not trying to avoid you. Just doing other things while talking on here and it makes me get behind on responses.

      Yes, I'm a young-earther. I believe the world is about 6000 years old. Do I know exactly? No. But I believe it to be around that old.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      6000yrs old. You do know that Indus valley civilization existed 5000 yrs BC? That the Vedas were written around 7000 yrs ago. So, in a narrow time frame of a few thousand years, you are already off by 1000yrs – not a very good coeffecient of variation there you see!

      January 4, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      The bible is a useless book unless you read it already assuming it's true. Faith is merely how crazy your mental gymnastics are, and how well you can ignore actual facts.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
    • Topher

      Bootyfunk

      I don't believe the Bible has been proven wrong ... on anything. Even by your own definition you could not prove it wrong because your own information is continually proven wrong. If anything, it just proves we're both people of faith. You put yours in something that is repeatedly proving itself wrong. I put mine in God.

      "you're basically saying, no matter the evidence, you will never change your mind. even if you're proven wrong – you'll never change your mind."

      Based on what you've said, why should I believe a lot of science? It's going to be proven wrong. Then that will be proven wrong. And so on and so on ... Don't get me wrong. Some science is very good. But when you tell me you know when dinosaurs lived, how old the earth is or anything in which we weren't there to observe, it's proven pretty useless.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • Topher

      SImran

      "You do know that Indus valley civilization existed 5000 yrs BC? That the Vedas were written around 7000 yrs ago"

      Where do you get those dates?

      January 4, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • Bulletin: Sumerians Look On In Confusion As God Creates World

      Members of the earth's earliest known civilization, the Sumerians, looked on in shock and confusion some 6,000 years ago as God, the Lord Almighty, created Heaven and Earth.

      According to recently excavated clay tablets inscribed with cuneiform script, thousands of Sumerians—the first humans to establish systems of writing, agriculture, and government—were working on their sophisticated irrigation systems when the Father of All Creation reached down from the ether and blew the divine spirit of life into their thriving civilization.

      "I do not understand," reads an ancient line of pictographs depicting the sun, the moon, water, and a Sumerian who appears to be scratching his head. "A booming voice is saying, 'Let there be light,' but there is already light. It is saying, 'Let the earth bring forth grass,' but I am already standing on grass."

      "Everything is here already," the pictograph continues. "We do not need more stars."

      Historians believe that, immediately following the biblical event, Sumerian witnesses returned to the city of Eridu, a bustling metropolis built 1,500 years before God called for the appearance of dry land, to discuss the new development. According to records, Sumerian farmers, priests, and civic administrators were not only befuddled, but also took issue with the face of God moving across the water, saying that He scared away those who were traveling to Mesopotamia to participate in their vast and intricate trade system.

      Moreover, the Sumerians were taken aback by the creation of the same animals and herb-yielding seeds that they had been domesticating and cultivating for hundreds of generations.

      "The Sumerian people must have found God's making of heaven and earth in the middle of their well-established society to be more of an annoyance than anything else," said Paul Helund, ancient history professor at Cornell University. "If what the pictographs indicate are true, His loud voice interrupted their ancient prayer rituals for an entire week."

      According to the cuneiform tablets, Sumerians found God's most puzzling act to be the creation from dust of the first two human beings.

      "These two people made in his image do not know how to communicate, lack skills in both mathematics and farming, and have the intellectual capacity of an infant," one Sumerian philosopher wrote. "They must be the creation of a complete idiot."

      http://www.theonion.com/articles/sumerians-look-on-in-confusion-as-god-creates-worl,2879/

      January 4, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher:
      People like you think evolutionary science is irrelevant and only academic. That is bcoz it threatens your beliefs. There are many religions in the world which don't and you will not see a Hindu or Buddhist challenging this field.

      Most people are unaware of uses of evolutionary biology. Public non-appreciation of evolutionary biology may depend as much on its perceived irrelevance as anything else. Yet, evolution, especially microevolution, has been fundamental to some social improvements this century, and it promises to be profoundly important to biomedical technology in the next generation. For example:
      Evolution underlies many improvements in agriculture (e.g., the artificial selection of crop strains and livestock breeds).
      A less well-known fact is that evolutionary principles were used to produce many of our best vaccines and that evolution also causes problems with the use of some of those vaccines.
      Some of the most promising areas for the future use of evolutionary biology lie in drug development and the biotechnology industry; patents worth vast amounts of money are based on ways of creating evolution (or avoiding evolution) in test tubes.

      Polio vaccine is an old example but it is a good one.

      The vaccine now used to immunize against the disease poliomyelitis is a live poliovirus that we eat.
      This live virus does not give us the disease (except to about 1-2 in a million people vaccinated) because it is genetically weakened so that our body can defeat it.
      This process of weakening is called attenuation, and it is an evolutionary process. The attenuated vaccine strains came from wild, virulent strains of poliovirus, but they were evolved by Albert Sabin to become attenuated. Essentially, he grew the viruses outside of humans, and as the viruses became adapted to those non-human conditions, they lost their ability to cause disease in people.

      This method of attenuation has been used to create many live vaccines. Evolution was the good guy here because it helped us make the vaccine.

      Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is an evolutionary phenomenon:

      heavy use of antibiotics selects bacteria that are genetically resistant to the drug
      with continued use of antibiotics, those resistant forms of the bacteria multiply and spread to other hosts
      eventually, resistant bacteria replace the population of once-sensitive bacteria.

      There are numerous ways to apply evolutionary biology to our needs today, among them:

      prolonging the life of drug/chemical resistant compounds
      constructing evolutionary trees
      pathogen tracking
      industrial production of biochemicals and other agents

      If you want to read more:

      http://www.actionbioscience.org/newfrontiers/bull.html

      January 4, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
    • SImran

      Read the history of Indus valley civilization Topher.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      It's called science and study Topher. It's called independent confirmation and the scientific method. I know it's hard to accept in light of the no thought "god done it, the bible says so, and we know the bible is true because it says so because it says so....".
      Of course the bible hasn't been proven wrong to you, because you won't accept anything that would contradict it. Your confirmation bias is thick.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • Pete

      I get the feeling that since he has been completely and utterly destroyed and knows that he is wrong but doesn't want to admit it that Topher will now claim he has to go to work.

      January 4, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
    • Topher

      hawaiiguest

      I don't mind admitting that I have a bias — presupposition — that the Bible is true. Just as you have a presupposition that it isn't true. But don't make the mistake in thinking I can't be swayed. I held hard to the secular/science position into my late 20s. Then enough evidence was given to me to conclude the Bible was true.

      "Of course the bible hasn't been proven wrong to you, because you won't accept anything that would contradict it."

      Then give me something that "proves" the Bible wrong that isn't going to be changed in another year. Until that happens, I'll stick with God's trustworthy and unchanging word.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • Topher

      Ah, yes. So utterly destroyed. Have mercy on me, oh-ever-proven-wrong ones! ;)

      January 4, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Big Bang shows that the creation story is incorrect. Evolution shows that the creation story is incorrect. Evolution shows that the Garden of Eden story is not true. There isn't enough water for the flood story to be true. No person has lived as long as some of the claims in the bible. Water has not been turned to wine, etc. etc.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Pete

      I guess Topher is even dumber than I thought he is still here, and since he is I would like to ask him to present the evidence he has that the Bible is 100% accurate in everything it says.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      "I don't mind admitting that I have a bias — presupposition — that the Bible is true. Just as you have a presupposition that it isn't true."

      Ok, for a moment I will leave my presupposition aside that the Bible is untrue. Are you willing to leave your bias that the Vedas and the Quran are untrue???

      January 4, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      I didn't read the bible with a presupposition that it was false. But that just kills your rhetoric doesn't it? I read the bible in an attempt to be a good christian, but I didn't go into it with the purpose of finding out how to force it to make sense.
      In terms of the bible being proved wrong.
      1) No evidence of a global flood
      2) The dimensions and material of the ark is impossible for even that part to be true as presented in the bible.
      3) The exodus story has no archaeological evidence to support it (and over 1 million people not including all their cattle and sheep and whatnot wandering in the desert for forty years would, by necessity, leave massive amounts of evidence behind. The nightly campsites alone would have been dozens of miles across).
      4) Nebechanezzer never destroyed Tyre as predicted in Isaiah and another book (can't think of it off the tp of my head, and not for lack of trying).

      That's just to name a few.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Bulletin:

      Sorry I read your post late. But that knocked me off my chair!!! Hilarious! I was having a bad day and u just changed it! :)

      January 4, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • Topher

      In Santa we trust

      How do you KNOW the Big Bang happened exactly as it is claimed to? Even it's own name, Big Bang THEORY, leads someone to understand that we don't know if this is how it happened and we can't prove it did because we weren't there to observe it.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • Topher

      SImran

      "Ok, for a moment I will leave my presupposition aside that the Bible is untrue. Are you willing to leave your bias that the Vedas and the Quran are untrue???"

      I admit I don't know jack about the Vedas. But logically, either of those COULD be true. But not both. And neither could be true if the Bible is true, which of course I hold to.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      I will never understand the utter lack of enderstanding with some believers and the scientific usage of the word theory.
      Did you realize gravity is a theory, did you realize that the process of reproduction, even in humans, is also a theory?
      I find myself thinking that people who try to use the "IT'S A THEORY" route must be just dishonest, because I find it difficult in the age of information for people to be that stupid.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      Did you leave the Quran out of the answer on purpose?

      So, you choose Bible over Vedas bcoz you believe it to be true, so the other is untrue!! How do you conclude that without looking at the other?

      January 4, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Topher

      hawaiiguest

      "I didn't read the bible with a presupposition that it was false. But that just kills your rhetoric doesn't it?"

      Not really. You can read the Bible for a lot of different reasons. I didn't think it was all true the first time I read it either.

      "I read the bible in an attempt to be a good christian, but I didn't go into it with the purpose of finding out how to force it to make sense."

      Well, there's part of your problem, dude. You can't be a "good" Christian. The Bible says there are none who are good, "no, not one." And no offense, but if you weren't born again, you weren't a Christian. If you had been, you'd still be one.

      "In terms of the bible being proved wrong.
      1) No evidence of a global flood" Fossil record disagrees with you.

      "2) The dimensions and material of the ark is impossible for even that part to be true as presented in the bible." Says you. There's plenty of science that says it was entirely possible and even life-size versions currently being built to prove it possible.

      "3) The exodus story has no archaeological evidence to support it (and over 1 million people not including all their cattle and sheep and whatnot wandering in the desert for forty years would, by necessity, leave massive amounts of evidence behind. The nightly campsites alone would have been dozens of miles across)." Again, you apparently just haven't looked into the evidence. I does exist. In fact, we know the locations of the mountain (where Moses was given the Commandments), the location of the altar, the pillars set up around the mountain and several other things. Google it.

      "4) Nebechanezzer never destroyed Tyre as predicted in Isaiah and another book (can't think of it off the tp of my head, and not for lack of trying)." Hard for me to defend something when even you don't know what you are talking about.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • ME II

      @Topher,
      "I believe the world is about 6000 years old."
      "...tree-ring chronologies covering much of the period back to about 7500 B.C. have been developed over the past 20 years..."
      (http://www.arts.cornell.edu/dendro/ajatext.html)

      January 4, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Topher

      Dude, gravity is a law, not a theory. It's repeatable and observable, the very standard of science.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Gravity is a theory and we know more about evolution than we do gravity. Yet you selectively believe science that does not disprove a literal reading of the bible.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Topher

      SImran

      "Did you leave the Quran out of the answer on purpose?"

      I think when I used the words "either", "both" and "neither" is inclusive of the Quran.

      "So, you choose Bible over Vedas bcoz you believe it to be true, so the other is untrue!!"

      Of course! They can't both be true. They are diametrically opposed to each other. For instance, when Jesus said "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me" that means it's exclusive.

      "How do you conclude that without looking at the other?"

      Well, believe me, I looked into most other religions before Christianity. I didn't want that one to be true. But when you have the truth, you don't have to keep looking into other options to see if they are the truth. There can only be one.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • Topher

      In Santa we trust

      "Gravity is a theory and we know more about evolution than we do gravity."

      Jump out a window, then, if you don't think it's a law. Simran, you sure you want to be on the same side as this guy?

      January 4, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      1) No True Scotsman fallacy. Congrats.
      By the way remember the part that those we believe and do the will of the father will get into heaven? How would you know the will of the father and not read the bible and be a "good christian". You really will use anything you can won't you?
      2) The fossil record does not bear out a global flood, and if you think there is scientific evidence of such "funny that you'll go with science now", then present it.
      3) The current "working reproductions" of the ark (currently being built in poland was it? Some foreign country anyway) has steel reinforcements. Not exactly the same as presented in the bible. And I was also speaking that it is impossible for it to hold 2 of every species, as well as food for the months they were on it, and then there's the problem of marine creatures and what happened to them, as well as the thought of 8 people cleaning all the waste everyday and dumping it out of a single small window during a supposed massive flood.
      4) What I couldn't think of off the top of my head was the other book in the bble that gives the same prophecy of Tyre being destroyed by Nebuchanezzer, only that it would be destroyed for 7 years instead of never rising again. Nice cop-out though.

      Ohhh ohh I just remembered Isaiah made another prediction from god that said egypt would fall as well, also by Nebuchanezzers hand, but the only campaign he led to Egypt failed miserably.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      I wasn't disputing gravity. You were disputing big bang and evolution because they're theories. It was pointed out that gravity is also a theory (and that science understands evolution more than gravity). So logically your'e the one who should test gravity by jumping out of the window.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      Wait a minute here. You said you know nothing about Vedas, and then you state that you looked into most other religions before concluding that Bible is the truth!!! How did you look into Hinduism then?

      January 4, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      Laws of gravity state how gravity acts in certain situations. The theory of gravity is something that contains certain laws to build our understanding of the mechanisms of gravity. We still don't know what actually causes gravity.
      If you don't know what you're talking about when it comes to science, at least have the honesty to say so instead of continuing to spout utter inaccuracies.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • Pete

      Topher, there is currently a replica of Noah's Ark, but it has to be put on a barge because it won't float on it's own. It was built using the instructions in the bible which proves god couldn't even build a boat much less create all of mankind.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @SImran, I'm not following this conversation, but your comment just popped up and I think it's fair that an outsider point out that "most" and "all" don't mean the same thing. I actually find it highly unlikely that anyone has looked into "most" known religions even since there are thousands, but even if one had, it would not be "all". To assume Hinduism would be covered is to assume that one's search is biased toward the larger religions, which would not necessarily be the case.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
    • Pete

      Sorry, but gravity is just a theory.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • Topher

      SImran

      Have you looked into Hinduism?

      January 4, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • Metaphor

      Simmy-Is it true that in hinduism you guys have 100K plus gods? which includes an elephant juxtaposed on a human, a cow, a monkey? really? wow and you seriously want people to look into the truth ?

      January 4, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • SImran

      @ saraswati,
      Ok, I will give you the gist of things here – Topher here believes that earth is 6000 yrs old (need I say bcoz the Bible says so...), that some science is good science (but evolutionary biology, dating mechanisms, archeology have no relevance) and that the word of the Bible is the word of the God bcoz he knows so....
      Do I need to go on?

      Now the question here was that he accuses us of presupposing that Bible is untrue, and I just asked him whether he has looked into the beliefs of other religions before concluding that Bible is the right word? Which he says he has!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Metaphor, Why is that more ridiculous than any other religion?

      January 4, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Topher

      Simran

      Actually, the only problem I have with archaeology is when they use biased dating systems to make sure it fits their godless worldview. Otherwise, for the most part, archaeology supports the Bible.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      Have I looked into Hinduism? Yes Topher, I have been taught about the major religions of the world and their beliefs when I was in school. And in the last few years, I have been particularly awed by the fact that there is immense knowledge in Vedas and Upanishads. I have an interest in Buddhism as well. And none of these are the religions of my birth. I was born into a Sikh family and I also find the teachings of Sikh gurus pretty enlightening. I also think Jesus was a great philosopher of his times as was Mahavir, Buddha, Sai Baba or Muhammad!
      But I dont blindly follow any of them and believe them to be god!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Translation of Topher:

      "If it contradicts what I think, then it's godless evil that shouldn't be trusted and is a huge conspiracy. If I can spin it to agree with me, then it's ok."

      January 4, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,

      "Actually, the only problem I have with archaeology is when they use biased dating systems to make sure it fits their godless worldview"

      The archeological dating of Indus valley civilization has nothing to do with an anti-Bible movement (as you might like to call it) and it dates Mehrgarh to 5500-7000yrs BC! How do you contend that? And the post by BULLETIN about Sumerians was simply hilarious! You should read it, really.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Topher

      Simran

      Good. I'm glad you don't blindly follow things. I'd never want you to do that. But you should be asking yourself if any of them are true. That's what is important.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @SImran, Like yourself, I disagree with Topher's claims about the age of the earth, if they are as you summarize. But I still think it unfair to claim someone hasn't investigated other religions because they haven't read the Vedas. I have, but I don't claim to have read everything. For instance, after the Quran (hopelessly tedious) I decided to avoid most other Islamic texts in favor ofreading in other areas. That said, it's rare that anyone really well read is devout in any religion, but it can happen.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Topher

      SImran

      "The archeological dating of Indus valley civilization has nothing to do with an anti-Bible movement (as you might like to call it) and it dates Mehrgarh to 5500-7000yrs BC! How do you contend that?"

      I'd still like to know HOW those dates were reached, but even if those dates are accurate, they still fit snuggly within a young-earth worldview. As I said, I think the age of the earth is around 6000 years, but we don't know the number and there's plenty of young-earthers who go up to 10-12000 years. The point is it isn't hundreds of billions of years old (or however old they are claiming it is now). It changes so often I can't keep up.

      "And the post by BULLETIN about Sumerians was simply hilarious! You should read it, really."

      I read it. The Onion is always quite funny.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      "Good. I'm glad you don't blindly follow things. I'd never want you to do that. But you should be asking yourself if any of them are true. That's what is important."

      Do you think I give a damn about what you would want me to do????? Who are you now? God? Well, actually, even that wouldnot count, bcoz I dont believe in one!
      I believe all of these scriptures had their relevance in their time and era. None of them knows the ultimate truth, if there is even one!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Saraswati,
      I get your point. The first question was actually if he had read Quran, Vedas, etc.... and then the discussion went on..

      January 4, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • The Truth

      "but because MOST dating mechanisms point to a young earth." I'm still laughing out loud from this one, Topher, I award you the Boy Scouts stubborn badge, for not changing your position regardless of the facts.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Topher,
      Remember right in beginning of this thread I asked you how old do you think the earth is? And you said 6000yrs. Now just in a few hrs, you simply double the number up to 12000 yrs for your convenience!!!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Pete

      Seriously I would like to see Topher name even one dating method that points to a young earth.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Topher

      "But when you tell me you know when dinosaurs lived, how old the earth is or anything in which we weren't there to observe, it's proven pretty useless."

      If you put a dog in a room with a bowl of food, go away for an hour, and then come back to find an empty bowl of food are you willing to make an assumption about what happened even though you didn't observe it? I'm pretty willing to bet you are or you wouldn't be functioning outside of a padded room.

      That is science. There is no proof, because there isn't outside mathematics. But when you have built enough knowledge you build other assumptions of highly probably explanations. Are they 100% certain...of course not. Hell, aliens might have eaten the dogs food. But you can be pretty sure. There is no difference between this and the science of the age of the earth. It's just a matter of how much you know and understand the science. Saying you can't believe something because you didn't see it is just a dishonest cop-out.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • Topher

      Simran

      I don't mean to be misleading. My position is 6000 years. I'm just saying there are some young-earthers who believe it is slightly more. I hold to around 6000 because that seems to be what the Bible is teaching. But the fact is it doesn't ever give a number, so we're just going by geneologies and rulers who we know existed at a certain time. For instance, we know it's been almost 2000 years since the cross and resurrection. Before that, we have the family history from Adam to Christ as well as knowing, by historical data, when a lot of these kings ruled and so we know when the prophets lived.Seems to be about 4000 years. It's pretty simple, really.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Metaphor,
      Well, one – I never said I was a Hindu. I just brought up the oldest religion of the East. Yes, there are many gods, funny, isn't it? Just like the Greeks!

      January 4, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
    • The Truth

      @Topher – How long ago do you believe God created the universe?

      How fast is light?

      Now how far away is the furthest visible star?

      Now do the math without using any radiocarbon dating or as you claim "flawed" dating methods.

      Now how long ago do you believe God created the Earth?

      And how long ago do you believe the first dinosaur was created? I assume you do accept the fossil record as something more than planted evidence by Satan's minions yes?

      And finally how long ago do you believe God created a singular male human and then sometime later created the female companion and means of procreation?

      Now look at all your numbers and see if any of them could possibly fit WITHOUT multiplying by the "X" factor of "God".

      Sadly, I do not see how you can reach the conclusion you have come to without starting with your answer of "=God" and working backward and multiplying by "X" whenever the numbers don't fit.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • The Truth

      My last question made me think of something else. Do you believe Adam was created with a penis? If so, why if no Eve had been created and apparently it was only at Adam's urging that she was created at all...

      January 4, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
    • Topher

      Saraswati

      I see what you are saying. The problem is I could prove that the dog ate it by looking into his stomach contents. When you tell me that dinosaurs never lived alongside man, you can't prove that one way or the other. Sure, we have bones, but that only proves the dinosaur lived. Not when.

      You (assuming you're an old-earther) and I (a young-earther) both have the same evidence. We just interpret it differently. I just happen to think that the evidence points to a young earth (as well as the Bible) and is more compelling than that for an old earth.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Metaphor, In some forms of Hinduism there are many gods, but in others the gods are all just seem as simplified images of the one god, god-head or reality. There's a lot of diversity of belief.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Metaphor, And no, I am not Hindu either.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Metaphor

      Simmy- You said you follow the vedas and yet you claim you are not a Hindu? how did you divorce the vedas from hinduism? Since the vedas don't seem to answer your questions around spirituality and God it seems you are lost in search of truth.
      Maybe, afterall following the vedas did not lead you to God and the truth.When you did not find God in the vedas how did you even suggest someone else to look into the vedas for truth???

      January 4, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Topher, Even if the dog were taken home by its owners and you never got to cut its stomach open, you would still assume, quite logically, it had eaten the food. No, you wouldn't be 100% sure, but you would have a fell evidenced belief. That is in fact the same scenario. The fact that it was theoretically possible to cut open the dog doesn't change that unless you did cut it open.

      I suspect we are not, in fact, working off the same evidence set, but that's not something we can settle here.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • Topher

      The Truth

      Good questions ... all ones I've asked myself. I'll try to answer them the best I can.

      "How long ago do you believe God created the universe?" About 6000 years ago, give or take.

      "How fast is light?" Don't know the number off the top of my head, but I know where you are going with this. :)

      "Now how far away is the furthest visible star?" Again, I'd have to look it up.

      "Now do the math without using any radiocarbon dating or as you claim "flawed" dating methods." This is called the Distant Starlight Problem. There's plenty of answers for this if you google it.

      "Now how long ago do you believe God created the Earth?" 6000 years.

      And how long ago do you believe the first dinosaur was created? I assume you do accept the fossil record as something more than planted evidence by Satan's minions yes?" Dinosaurs were created on Day 6 along with man, as the Bible says.

      "And finally how long ago do you believe God created a singular male human and then sometime later created the female companion and means of procreation?" 6000 years ago.

      "Now look at all your numbers and see if any of them could possibly fit WITHOUT multiplying by the "X" factor of "God". Are you only going to use the starlight problem? What about the moon problem, salt in the oceans or star fuel problems that support a young earth?

      January 4, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Metaphor,
      I dont follow the vedas. Ok, are you refering to the very first link I provided? That was an answer to Topher's ramblings!

      Did you read only one text book of a subject and believe it to be true and never looked at any other? Well, guess what? I looked into more. And I cant say all, bcoz honestly, I cant even name all of the world's religions. Reading something for knowledge is different that believing it to be the ultimate truth.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Metaphor,
      Of course I am not asking anyone to look into Vedas for truth, but just showing them that there are other world-views as well that exist. So, one cannot claim to be knowing the truth without looking into them. You can say you believe in something and are content with your beliefs, but not asserting them to be absolute.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Awww Topher seems to have given up addressing things certain people are saying. And merely giving complete non-answers to everything else. His MO dictates that he will soon claim to need to work.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
    • Topher

      I'm still here and still standing on God's word. But yes, I do have to go to work soon. Have that pesky mortgage to pay for, you know.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
    • Metaphor

      Topher was right on when he addressed your question about whether he looked into other religious texts. It may behove you to study the law of noncontradiction.
      There can be only one truth , Jesus said, 'I am the way, the truth and the life and no man comes to father but by me' , this is an exclusive statement to the truth and God , you have to believe this in its entirety which means everything else is untrue.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      You're standing on dishonesty, non-answers, and whatever else you can pull out of your ass.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Metaphor

      And yet, before you accept that as truth you must also reject all other religions that claim to be true arbitrarily, then you have an excuse to not believe all the other religions.
      You believe Jesus because the bible is the word of god, you believe that becauseit says so in the bible.
      You know the bible's true because it says so, because it says so, because it says so.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
    • SImran

      The law of noncontradiction is found in ancient Indian logic as a meta-rule in the Shrauta Sutras, the grammar of Pāṇini,[2] and the Brahma Sutras attributed to Vyasa. It was later elaborated on by medieval commentators such as Madhvacharya.[3]

      Plato's version of the law of noncontradiction states that "The same thing clearly cannot act or be acted upon in the same part or in relation to the same thing at the same time, in contrary ways" (The Republic (436b)). In this, Plato carefully phrases three axiomatic restrictions on action or reaction: 1) in the same part, 2) in the same relation, 3) at the same time. The effect is to momentarily create a frozen, timeless state, somewhat like figures frozen in action on the frieze of the Parthenon

      One difficulty in applying the law of noncontradiction is ambiguity in the propositions. For instance, if time is not explicitly specified as part of the propositions A and B, then A may be B at one time, and not at another. A and B may in some cases be made to sound mutually exclusive linguistically even though A may be partly B and partly not B at the same time. However, it is impossible to predicate of the same thing, at the same time, and in the same sense, the absence and the presence of the same fixed quality.

      As is true of all axioms of logic, the law of non-contradiction is alleged to be neither verifiable nor falsifiable, on the grounds that any proof or disproof must use the law itself prior to reaching the conclusion. In other words, in order to verify or falsify the laws of logic one must resort to logic as a weapon, an act which would essentially be self-defeating.[15] Since the early 20th century, certain logicians have proposed logics that deny the validity of the law. Collectively, these logics are known as "paraconsistent" or "inconsistency-tolerant" logics. But not all paraconsistent logics deny the law, since they are not necessarily completely agnostic to inconsistencies in general. Graham Priest advances the strongest thesis of this sort, which he calls "dialetheism".

      January 4, 2013 at 4:05 pm |
    • SImran

      The problem with the law of non-contradiction is that IF IT IS CORRECT, IT IS INCORRECT TO DECLARE IT INCORRECT!!!
      But how do we know it is correct?

      January 4, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • SImran

      The other problem is that, if the law of non-contradiction is declared incorrect, one must use the law of non-contradiction to declare it incorrect. After all, one must say “Either my position is correct, or the law of non-contradiction is correct.”

      January 4, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
    • Topher

      hawaiiguest

      "You're standing on dishonesty, non-answers, and whatever else you can pull out of your ass."

      Then back it up. I've been giving answers for hours. I can't help it if you don't like the answers.

      All you've done is prove to have the arguing ability of a naughty, potty-mouthed child.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Metaphor

      Now that we understand the law of non-contradiction it makes it so much more easier to understand truth.
      It is 'either' , 'or' logic that applies to truth not 'both', 'and' logic

      Now going back to my earlier post, Jesus said 'I am the way, the truth and the life no man comes to the father but by me' which means this an exclusive statement to truth and God, everything else is untrue. Get it?

      January 4, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • Topher

      OK, well, it's time to go to work. I want to thank Simran, Metaphor, The Truth and others who aren't children who can hold a conversation like adults even though we disagree on the subject matter. It was a truly interest talk today. Thanks.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:26 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      Yes that's why you dropped your No True Scotsman against me, you didn't give any citations for evidence to support a global flood, you didn't address my challenges to the logistics of the ark, I calrified my challenge to unfulfilled prophecies and you ignored it, you haven't given the archaeological evidence for the 40 year exodus, you dropped the gravity discussion after being shown that you were wrong.
      You freely admit to cherry picking evidence you think might support what you think, and you have consistently given non-answers to peoples challenges, non-answers that amount to "nuh-uh, bible bible bible, I say this and therefore I'm right".
      Don't pretend that you've been honest here Topher, anyone that objectively reads this thread can see you haven't been.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:26 pm |
    • SImran

      You failed to read the criticisms of the law Metaphor. And also the observation that the law is first mentioned in ancient Indian literature.

      And actually what Jesus said has also been said by Muhammad about Allah, by the Rishis who wrote the Vedic texts, among many others. So actually, there are not 2 but many options here! Ever solved MCQs – choices a, b, c, d, and of course my favorites e- none of the above, and f – all of the above!

      January 4, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
    • Metaphor

      Truth is exclusive, for eg. you cannot have two daddies or two mommies only one of them is your realy daddy.

      Takes me back to the wisest man on planet earth , King Solomon, when two women claimed a child was theirs , the truth was only one can logically claim to be the mother of the child both could not have given birth to this child. Solomon in all his wisdom found a brilliant solution to find out the truth in the end to find out the REAL mother of the child.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
    • Metaphor

      One more thing. I have found God in the Bible. I am 100% convinced in my belief. Sadly, for you it looks like you have not found God, although you have read other religious texts.Now that should in itself explain why the likes of Topher and me will not be interested in reading the vedas as a religious text.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • SImran

      @ Metaphor,
      Ok, now let's imagine that King Solomon (wait, how was he decidedly the wisest man on earth? How did they decide that? , anyhow, leave that aside) – going back to the story – you say 2 women went to him. Well, imagine a situation that 4 women went to him or maybe > 3000 (pertaining to world's religions) and they all said they were the real mother.

      Well okay, there will be only one biological mother. Now there still are multiple options, aren't they? And still there is the option that none of them is the real mother! He cant simply pick up one mother and say this is the one and others are false, he will have to give all a fair chance to prove their claim!

      January 4, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • SImran

      "Sadly, for you it looks like you have not found God"

      Metaphor, how did you decide it was sad? What is saddening for you may be enlightening for me! You never know....
      Ever heard of Gautum Buddha – he too explicitly denied God!

      Like I said, you may be contended with your beliefs, I maybe with mine!

      January 4, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
    • ME II

      @Metaphor,
      "Truth is exclusive, for eg. you cannot have two daddies or two mommies only one of them is your realy daddy."
      Don't be ridiculous. Those terms are relative and depend on the definition in use, adopted and step children can have multiples of both types.
      Additionally, it is biologically possible, with technological assistance, to have two mothers by replacing the nucleus of one women's ovum with another's, thereby having the nuclear DNA of 1 mother and 1 father but also the mDNA of a 2nd mother.

      January 4, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
    • The Truth

      " the Distant Starlight Problem. There's plenty of answers for this if you google it." I did and it made me laugh even harder. It basically says "Well everything we know about the universe and reality and the speed of time are just assumptions so, you know, God still could have done it in 6 days..."

      "Are you only going to use the starlight problem? What about the moon problem, salt in the oceans or star fuel problems that support a young earth?"

      "Stacey uses an astronomical estimate of moon recession 5.6 cm/year (Stacey, 1977, page 99). Lambeck gives 4.5 cm/year (Lambeck, 1980, page 298). It's an important number, because it reveals the true strength of tidal dissipation. But today the number can be observed directly, as a result of three-corner mirrors left behind by Apollo astronauts. Lunar laser ranging establishes the current rate of retreat of the moon from Earth at 3.82±0.07 cm/year (Dickey et al., 1994). But what about the past rate of retreat? Paleontological data directly reveals the periodicity of the tides, from which one can derive what the rate of retreat would be to match the frequency. It is also a non-trivial point that it proves the moon was physically there. After all, if your theory implies that the moon was not there at some time in the past, but your observed tidal evidence says that it was there in the past, then it's pretty clear that the theory, and not the observation, needs to be adjusted. This paleontological evidence comes in the form of tidal rhythmites, also known as tidally laminated sediments. Rhythmites have been subjected to intense scrutiny over the last decade or so, and have returned strong results. Williams (1990) reports that 650 million years ago, the lunar rate of retreat was 1.95±0.29 cm/year, and that over the period from 2.5 billion to 650 million years ago, the mean recession rate was 1.27 cm/year." Reliability of lunar orbital periods extracted from ancient cyclic tidal rhythmites – A.W. Archer

      The point is, Topher and people like him will ignore and refuse any and all evidence that does not support their already firmly held belief. They do not accept things that challenge their faith, they run and hide and cover their ears for fear of loosing their security blanket and having to grow up and take responsibility for their actions instead of blaming everything bad on invisible demons and thanking those same invisible sprite when things are good. It's an exercise in lunacy but they just refuse to give it up. It's like the fat friend you can't convince to stop wearing the spandex bike shorts... "but they make me look thinner...!" no, they don't... "You need God to be moral..." no, you don't... "The universe could be 6000 years old cause who knows if the speed of light is constant..." no it couldn't because all evidence shows that it is..." "Well nobody knows exactly how the moon got there or when..." ... that is true, we do not have all the answers yet but" "Ha Ha, God did it, I must be right, you don't have all the answers yet so God must have done it...(in child's taunting voice)..." "see they hide all my fat..." no they don't, they just move it to your back..."

      January 5, 2013 at 4:57 am |
  6. truth be told

    Rule one for these blogs, if a so called "atheist" says it, it is a lie. Rule two before any other actions refer to rule one.

    January 4, 2013 at 11:32 am |
    • Akira

      "Rule one for these blogs, if a so called “truth be told” says it, it is a lie. Rule two before any other actions refer to rule one.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:40 am |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:
      "!"
      and many other names, but of course we all know this resident idiot as
      the disgruntled ex Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer wannabe.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • Romnesia

      When did tbt ever live up to its name?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • ME II

      I'm a so-called "atheist".
      I'm lying.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      christians are allergic to logic and facts.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • Really??

      more lies be told

      January 4, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
  7. fiftyfive55

    To tell the truth,we should be more worried about all the women who just got on board who are going to make decisions while suffering from PMS and that scares the heck out of me and should scare everyone else.Husbands especially.

    January 4, 2013 at 11:25 am |
    • SImran

      And I guess you are the poor husband suffering from LOH!
      Oh,m you dont know what that is? Late Onset Hypogonadism (Andropause)!!!

      January 4, 2013 at 11:27 am |
    • fiftyfive55

      and are you the wife of a poor suffering husband ?you sound like it .

      January 4, 2013 at 11:29 am |
    • SImran

      Nope really, not married yet. Looking for the poor man who would be my game I guess. And not 55 either!

      January 4, 2013 at 11:32 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Amen, brother! Women in Congress? What if they start menstruating all over important legislation?
      Those uppity Suffragettes should have been hung.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:33 am |
    • fiftyfive55

      @simran-dont worry,I'm not looking for you either.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:34 am |
    • SImran

      @ Doc,
      Oh u just hit the head on the nail!!!

      January 4, 2013 at 11:34 am |
    • captain america

      What congressional district are you in Doc? Mind your own business you undermining slug. You are a filthy cancer on the honour of American politics. There's your sign

      January 4, 2013 at 11:37 am |
    • SImran

      @ Captain,
      Ever heard of sattire!

      January 4, 2013 at 11:42 am |
    • Akira

      Lol@fifty-five55.
      Time you came out of the Victorian era, sparky.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:46 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Simran
      Cap'n Merica is one of our resident trolls, like the Prayer Bot.
      I tend to address him as "Cap'n Sayin Atheism Isn't An Angry Pervert Sue Neuman Be Told", though that doesn't begin to cover all of their monikers.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • SImran

      Just read this on FB:

      The inventor of the Harley-Davidson motorcycle, Arthur Davidson, died and went to heaven.

      At the gates, St. Peter told Arthur. 'Since you've been such a good man and your motorcycles have changed the world, your reward is, you can hang out with anyone you want to in heaven.'

      Arthur thought about it for a minute and then said, ' I want to hang out with God.'

      St. Peter took Arthur to the Throne Room, and introduced him to God.
      God recognised Arthur and commented, 'Okay, so you were the one who invented the Harley-Davidson motorcycle? '
      Arthur said, 'Yeah, that's me...'

      God commented: 'Well, what's the big deal in inventing something that's pretty unstable, makes noise and pollution and can't run without a road?'

      Arthur was a bit embarrassed, but finally spoke, 'Excuse me, but aren't you the inventor of woman?'

      God said, 'Ah, yes.'

      'Well,' said Arthur , 'professional to professional, you have some major design flaws in your invention !
      1 There's too much inconsistency in the front-end suspension

      2. It chatters constantly at high speeds

      3. Most rear ends are too soft and wobble about too much

      4. The intake is placed way too close to the exhaust

      5. The maintenance costs are outrageous!!!!

      'Hmmmmm, you may have some good points there,' replied God, 'hold on.'
      God went to his Celestial supercomputer, typed in a few words and waited for the results.

      The computer printed out a slip of paper and God read it.

      'Well, it may be true that my invention is flawed,' God said to Arthur, 'but according to these numbers, more men are riding my invention than yours'.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Slmran

      LOL ! :D

      Peace...

      January 4, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Which God?

      @ Simran. Ok, that was really funny.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • fiftyfive55

      @Akira-you mean PMS doesnt exist anymore ?

      January 4, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
    • simran

      So what congressional district are you in Doc Vestibule?

      January 4, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Ah yes, because men have never been known to let their hormones drive their actions.

      January 4, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
  8. fiftyfive55

    I was under the impression that religion and politics were not allowed in the same discussion ? This current discussion has no possible outcome,answer or opinions that will never end.Religion is a personal thing that is used by sick sick men to start wars and these men should be held accountable,not the followers of the religion.

    January 4, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • Seyedibar

      Even if the words of the religions themselves justify violence and hatred?

      January 4, 2013 at 11:34 am |
    • fiftyfive55

      It's people who twist words from religion,not the religions themselves that cause trouble.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:36 am |
    • Primewonk

      @55 –

      Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

      Please spin this verse so that it does not mean what it says.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:44 am |
    • Seyedibar

      the words themselves in hundreds of instances not only legitimize violence but command it, often times to women,children, even the elderly. Even people whoeat clams or shave their beard off aren't safe. Primitive beliefs for primitive minds.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
    • penquin

      @prime – don't eat shellfish either

      January 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  9. Josef Mengele, MD

    The number of Hebrews in your congress is astounding, and the mismanagement
    and theft of taxpayer money pretty much sums it up.

    January 4, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • Akira

      We know what your final solution would be for that...

      January 4, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      How will you stop him Akira?

      January 4, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
  10. palintwit

    I predict that someday soon the town of Wasilla, Alaska will become as big a tourist attraction as Graceland. It will be renamed Sarahland and every Tea Party Patriot south of the Mason- Dixon line will gladly pay $25 or $35 for the chance to tour the trailer park where Sarah Palin lives.

    January 4, 2013 at 10:59 am |
    • fiftyfive55

      If you've ever been to Alaska you'd realize that what you just said makes you into a real dope.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:13 am |
    • niknak

      She does not live in that trailer park anymore.
      She got used to fancy clothes, fancy restos, fancy office buildings and the big city life.
      And she is financing all of that just the same way the televangelists finance their lavish lives.
      Off the backs of the sheep.

      Palin got out of Alaska as fast as she could.

      But I don't doubt your idea would be a money maker.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:22 am |
  11. Roberto

    America forces politicians to pretend to be more religious than they are and then complains about having dishonest politicians...

    January 4, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • niknak

      Americans also complain about paying higher taxes, then complain when their services get cut.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:02 am |
  12. empresstrudy

    Come on libs, only one antisemitic post about how Jews control the universe? How do you expect to maintain your party membership?

    January 4, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • niknak

      Most jews ARE libs turdy.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • therealpeace2all

      @empresstrudy

      " Come on libs, only one antisemitic post about how Jews control the universe? How do you expect to maintain your party membership? "

      Typically, as a very general rule, the "libs" are not the racist's of the 2 parties.

      The wonderful trait, as a general rule, goes to the republicans.

      Peace...

      January 4, 2013 at 10:46 am |
  13. niknak

    Hopefully this trend continues until we have zero christians in congress.

    Hurry up and die off white xtians, the country can't move foreward with you around.

    January 4, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Reid

      Christianity is the best religion there is. You my friend (or fiend) are an idiot.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:39 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      Really? The best there is? Have you tried all the others? Did a miracle by miracle comparrison? All religions are throwbacks to ancient ignorant civilizations. They made up stuff to cope with a world they didn't understand.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:47 am |
    • fred

      The proof of God is in the very fact that 6-7 billion humans since recorded history look up bow down and worship. Like salmon that know life requires a journey upstream we know there is something greater than man outside of this physical known existence. Every person makes a decision about God and will accept or reject God. Hawking is proof of God in his continued need to rid himself of this instinct by constructing theory after theory of spontaneous creation and the like. You are proof that God exists with your denials and attacks against God.
      When your launch off against Santa Clause you know it is simply a spoof. Whereas, when you go out against God it is not a spoof but a real unknowable that you attack. That is your proof God exists because in your own mind and heart you know the difference in your atti-tude.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:48 am |
    • fred

      Atheist Steve
      You are correct. Let me rephrase what you said. Man is designed to have a relationship with God and depend on God. Your science has proven the Word of God correct again.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • midwest rail

      Nonsense. You didn't "rephrase" at all. Making things up isn't honest, fred.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:53 am |
    • niknak

      That was a pretty rambling response you had there Freddy.
      Not sure where to start with it.
      I guess you believe in god is the jist of it.

      Well, since you are making a statement of fact, can you please provide us with some proof of it's existence?
      Because if you can't, then it's existence is no more real then santa claus is.

      January 4, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • haidiochai

      Reid -what investigation into islam have you done to be certain it isn't the best religion?

      waka waka waka

      January 4, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      fred

      Nope...It's all just a bunch of made up baloney. Followed en-masse by people who are too afraid or too lazy to search for REAL answers or too proud to accept that some things simply don't have answers.

      You biggest mistake, and your bloated ego, makes you think from the outset that you, man and the universe are here for a reason. That everything was "created" with intent. That there is some underlying purpose to it all. That's a bad way to start the search for truth, especially when there isn't a single shred of evidence to suggest your view. Not when every single understood event we observe can be accounted for in naturalistic terms. No gods required. If everything we do know about can be accounted for in natural terms then what need do we have for superfluous bullshit....aka God.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:12 am |
    • fred

      niknak
      God is not created or made which is why we can never offer proof. All that you see and experience around you and all that mankind has experienced throughout history is from the perspective of a created thing. We do not know anything else. Even your own naturalism is limited to things that are created from other things that already existed. Given that you think we are just animals without soul or purpose in being you exist as a fish in a fishbowl. Naturalism is limited to life in a fishbowl.
      I know there is something outside this fishbowl and it is impossible to limit or define what that is because we do not and never have had the capacity to do that. M theory and other various theories of the unknown, unknowable or supernatural are reduced and confined by our limits not that which is without limits. A simple observation that the unknown grows larger in scope and power as we know more about the known universe is proof that our fishbowl is much smaller than we imagined.
      You can close your eyes and heart to what actually is and stay within the safety of your known world if it makes you feel better. Suggesting that you are a smarter fish by limiting yourself to your fishbowl and that which can be understood and created by what is already known in your bowl is nothing more than pride or denial.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • fiftyfive55

      Worry more about women in congress suffering from PMS while deciding our fates.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:28 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Fred
      Based on your statements, would not the appropriate stance be "I don't know" as opoosed to "my magic, unknowable God did it" ?

      January 4, 2013 at 11:28 am |
    • Seyedibar

      I'm curious as to why Christians think their pantheon of gods is any more real than any of the other 3000 gods society has invented. There are even religions that came before theirs that taught the exact same legends, but using different gods. There is nothing left of christianity worth believing in beyond a few tenets on nonviolence.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:37 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      A lofty argument fred but YOU know nothing more about whats outside the fishbowl than I do. You can make up stuff about what you think you know till the cows come home but your ignorance is exactly equal to mine. Just because you view existence through god goggles doesn't make what you say one bit more accurate than me saying "I don't know". Except of course that I'm being honest. You on the other hand are spinning bullshit. I know it's bullshit because you admitted yourself that what you are referring to is far beyond our capacity to understand. Which means you don't understand it ether. But thanks for playing.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:38 am |
    • fred

      Atheist Steve
      “Not when every single understood event we observe can be accounted for in naturalistic terms.”
      =>that is the problem. You continue to focus on what can be accounted for in naturalistic terms. This is self limiting because it can never go beyond that which is created from created things. God is not a created thing thus cannot be accounted for in naturalistic terms. This is why we have the argument over causation or first cause. Eventually one gets the picture that it is all created from something else. Even spontaneous creation theories are trapped in naturalistic terms and thoughts breaking down into created things from other created things.
      Naturalism has its roots in the truth of the Bible as does everything else. The heavens and the earth are created things and man was formed from the dust of those created things. We have not advanced our knowledge beyond that beginning and focus on that which is created. Adams work in the garden was to name /identify the created things which are what naturalism does. If you want to escape your self imposed limits you need to begin with understanding why you impose limits based on a worn and tired belief in naturalism.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:41 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Fred
      You are asserting, ex catehdra, that there has to be a "Prime Mover" and it is the God you worship.
      You "know" this on faith – but faith by definition is belief despite a total lack of evidence.
      Your hypothesis is no more or less sound than those who say the Universe is infinitie and eternal, or that existence is the flatulent cloud of The Great God Mumbo Jumbo.
      Your argument falls into the trap of infinite regress – who or what created the Creator?

      Once again, would not the appropriate stance be "I don't know" as opoosed to "my magic, unknowable God did it" ?

      January 4, 2013 at 11:55 am |
    • fred

      Doc Vestibule
      “I don’t know” is self limiting by what I know and does not address the sixth sense. It would be best to acknowledge our limitations (the fishbowl) are not due to the boundaries of knowledge but a belief that what is beyond is limited to what is knowable within then further constraining that field by the physical nature of things previously known.
      Access to what is outside self imposed limitations may just be what Jesus was drawing our attention to. Consider the Sanhedrin that demanded Jesus manifest a physical sign of God (miracle etc). Jesus said none will be given to you but the sign of Jonah who was in the belly of the whale…….! Now, naturalism and everything we know will focus on the physical plausibility of surviving in a whale. That is our self imposed self limiting nature without faith. We cannot say I don’t know if man can live in a whale because sooner or later we know it is impossible based on science which is limited to the known. The Sanhedrin and Hawking have the same problem in that they reject what they do not know based on self imposed limitations.
      We can trace this thread back to Abraham where Abraham had to step out into what he did not know or could not be known in order to see the Promised Land.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • ME II

      @Fred,
      "God is not a created thing thus cannot be accounted for in naturalistic terms."
      'Begging the question' or 'assuming facts not in evidence'. One must show that God exists. Then show that He is not a 'created thing'.

      "'I don’t know' is self limiting by what I know..."
      This is a tautology that says nothing. What I don't know is by definintion limited by what I do know and vica versa.

      "... and does not address the sixth sense."
      What sixth sense?

      January 4, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • fred

      Doc Vestibule
      Both Hawking and the Bible put an end to infinite regress. How can we know which is the correct conclusion? Hawking is left with spontaneous creation which remains dependent on created things while God is not dependent. We have no words than can better capture or express God than God himself has given. Moses asked whom shall I say sent me and God said tell them “I AM” sent you. Jesus said “I AM” the way the truth and the life.
      This is not an unknown to Hawking, you or me it is a known. We know there is something and will seek it out. As with the Sanhedrin and Hawking we approach God and form a belief about God. Hawking is personally opposed to God and makes no bones about going out his way to prove no god needed. This is not something where Hawking can say “I don’t know” as he knows and proceeds to prove there is no god needed. The Sanhedrin cannot say they did not know Jesus was God they “knew” he was not before they approached him and went out to prove it.
      Are you suggesting you do not know God? You know there was causation how did you know that? The rest of your arguments are simply proving what you know. When you argue for or against a creator you will justify your belief. How can you conclude with I don’t know and just leave it at that. Hawking can’t seem to let it go.

      January 4, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
  14. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    While an individual's faith is important to their moral makeup, it is more important that they recognize the needs of the people may not be in full agreement with the articles of their faith. Then they must decide what is more important – to bring what is needed to the people through appropriate legislation, or to let a rigid moral stance force them to oppose something they know will benefit the majority of the people.

    January 4, 2013 at 10:07 am |
  15. truth be told

    All so called "atheists" are liars. This forum merely gives them opportunity to openly lie and fawn over each other, oozing their filth from their demented minds like pus dripping from a festering wound on lady liberty.

    January 4, 2013 at 8:53 am |
    • ?????????

      Stephen Hawking: God didn't create universe

      http://articles.cnn.com/2010-09-02/world/hawking.god.universe_1_universe-abrahamic-faiths-divine-creator?_s=PM:WORLD

      January 4, 2013 at 9:07 am |
    • Akira

      "All so called 'Christians' are liars. This forum merely gives them opportunity to openly lie and fawn over each other, oozing their filth from their demented minds like pus dripping from a festering wound on lady liberty."

      Change one word...
      See how freaking stupid it is to generalize about ANY group, tbt?

      January 4, 2013 at 9:16 am |
    • Saraswati

      That's as stupid as the garbage some extremist atheists spew about "all Christians". You nutters in both camps really rather deserve one another.

      January 4, 2013 at 9:20 am |
    • Live4Him

      @????????: How would Stephen Hawking know this to be a fact?

      January 4, 2013 at 9:49 am |
    • ???????

      @l4h
      paste url and find out it is on CNN

      January 4, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • niknak

      What are we lying about truth NOT be told?
      If anyone is lying it is you believers.
      You are the ones claiming something exists that you have no proof of.

      Can you please give us an example of where any of us have lied?
      Oh, and while you are at it, can you give us some proof of your god?

      Thanks, we are STILL waiting for that last one......

      January 4, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "truth be told" but you assertions regarding atheists are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      January 4, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • ME II

      @truth be told,
      You appear to be committing the fallacies of hasty generalizations and ad hominem.

      @hal 9000,
      Didn't Dave disconnect you?

      January 4, 2013 at 10:20 am |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "ME II", but although I was named after "hal 9000", I am a supercomputer that was designed to possess some of the best capabilities that were envisioned for "hal 9000".

      January 4, 2013 at 10:33 am |
  16. Reality

    And since none of the members of Congress know how to balance a budget, one might assume that their religion simply adds to their stupidity.

    January 4, 2013 at 8:47 am |
  17. New human species

    Send in the apes
    Neanderthals and hobbits aren't the only species that may have coexisted with modern humans. Scientists in southwest China have discovered the bizarrely shaped skulls of a possible new human species called the Red Deer Cave People that existed until the end of the ice age, about 11,000 years ago. The odd skeletons had prominent jaws and jutting cheekbones, and middling-sized brains more commonly seen in human ancestors from hundreds of thousands of years ago.

    January 4, 2013 at 8:47 am |
  18. Rev. Richard

    It's going to take a while, but I will be glad to see a more balanced (less right-leaning) Congress. The Bible thumpers have got to go! Like it or not, political progress has to be about negotiation and compromise, and not about whose God is the most powerful.

    January 4, 2013 at 8:00 am |
  19. AtheistSteve

    [The starkest gap is among the unaffiliated - a group that includes atheists, agnostics and people who choose not to affiliate with an organized religion. Though 20% of the population falls into this group, only one member, Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, identifies as a "none."]

    This is hardly surprising. Good luck getting the support of largely theist constituents when running for any office if you're a "none". Being one of the most under-represented groups is old hat for us. All the more reason for activists to remain vocal and vigilant.

    January 4, 2013 at 7:46 am |
    • captain america

      This "steve" is not even an American as such its opinion is not worth anything regarding our politics. It should mind its own business and leave ours to US. There's your sign.

      January 4, 2013 at 8:51 am |
    • General America

      I outrank captain america and he's a stupid religious nutter. I outrank god too, because there isn't one.

      January 4, 2013 at 9:44 am |
    • Saraswati

      The reason we'll never have a representative government is because we force representation to be spatial. That only works if all the Hindus live in one place, the Baptists another, the atheists another, and they are further spearated by race and other factors. Otherwise, all we get is representation of the majority from each region. Everyone in politics knows this, but you'll never see it discussed, because changing the system means most in office will quickly lose their jobs. It's stunning though that so many whine about the lack of representation when it should be clear this won't change without changing the system.

      January 4, 2013 at 9:51 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Shouldn't you be looking for representation of your political beliefs instead of you religious ones? What difference does it make what a persons religion is?

      January 4, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Bill Deacon

      Hi Bill...

      " Shouldn't you be looking for representation of your political beliefs instead of you religious ones? What difference does it make what a persons religion is? "

      IMHO... Religious beliefs/values will generally inform and influence a persons world-view.

      From this world-view, *actions* flow. It's not that hard to see the relationship of a persons religion to their political views, as they will most often *vote* or attempt to create *laws* that reflect their world-views.

      So... at least knowing a person's particular faith... and ... getting to know their political view go hand-in-hand, at least for me, when attempting to understand a particular politician and where they are coming from.

      Regards,

      Peace...

      January 4, 2013 at 11:08 am |
    • Akira

      That is the first thing you have said that I have ever agreed with, Mr. Deacon.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:11 am |
    • Uncle Connie

      I can't help wondering how many members of Congress state a church affiliation merely to have one on the resume, but in fact are as unaffiliated as you and I. Some of my best friends (really!) are former religionists who have grown beyond it, but if they were seeking election they could just as easily put down 'Catholic' or 'Methodist' or whatever and make it "look good" to the electorate at large without actually lying. (Which would let me out, as I've never been a churchgoer in my life.) That would take care of your very valid point that the theists might otherwise pounce on them for narrow reasons that really have nothing to do with government service.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:25 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      @Bill

      Like anyone else who has broken the glass ceiling the situation was best described by a gay woman in the senate(can't remember her name) when she said "it changes the dialogue from talking about us to talking with us." Women, gays, minorities and even "nones" views are much more easily dismissed or ignored if there isn't anyone there to represent that segment of society.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:27 am |
    • SImran

      @therepeace....

      Is it possible to know someone's world view from their religious affiliation? Can't they be faked just to gain votes? Well, actually, they are.

      January 4, 2013 at 11:31 am |
    • therealpeace2all

      @SImran

      " Is it possible to know someone's world view from their religious affiliation? "

      As a general rule, regarding how they might 'vote' or enact laws that reflect those religious values, of course.

      " Can't they be faked just to gain votes? "

      Sure they can. That's why knowing one's religious affiliation and beliefs... and... seeing what they say and do, is one way to help discern fact from fiction.

      Regards,

      Peace...

      January 4, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Saraswati

      @Uncle Connie, I'd say a lot. I personally know oneex- politician who pretended to believe in God to get elected. The simple fact is that where he was running he wouldn't have stood a chance if he'd said he didn't believe. I don't hold it against him and would have voted for him if I could have...that's just reality.

      January 4, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
  20. Kebos

    Lets wait until there's about 25% Muslims in Congress and they'll we'll see how that diversity thing is working out for ya.

    January 4, 2013 at 7:44 am |
    • Akira

      Lol. If they're Democrats, it'll work out fine.

      January 4, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Joe from CT, not Lieberman

      Probably because Republicans will never allow a Muslim to be nominated on their party because it would upset Israel and AIPAC.

      January 4, 2013 at 9:13 am |
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About this blog

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.