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January 7th, 2014
10:00 AM ET

Satanists unveil design for OK statehouse statue

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) - Satanists have unveiled their design for a proposed statue at the Oklahoma state Capitol, including a place for people to sit on the devil's lap "for inspiration and contemplation."

The New York-based Satanic Temple submitted its proposal to Oklahoma officials this month after applying for a spot on Capitol grounds late last year. The Satanists say their statue would "complement and contrast" with a Ten Commandments monument placed at the Capitol in Oklahoma City in 2012.

The Satanists' proposed monument depicts Baphomet, a goat-headed pagan idol sitting on a 7-foot-tall throne inscribed with an inverted pentagram. In an artist's rendering provided by the Satanic Temple, smiling children look adoringly at the devilish figure.

"The statue will serve as a beacon calling for compassion and empathy among all living creatures," Lucien Greaves, a spokesman for the Satanic Temple, said in a prepared statement. "The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation.”

According to its Indiegogo page, the Satanists have raised more than $16,000 toward their goal of $20,000 for the monument, which Greaves said would "be a historical marker commemorating the scapegoats, the marginalized, the demonized minority and the unjustly outcast.”

The Temple of Satan is less a religious body organized around rituals and regular meetings than a roving band of political provocateurs, according to Greaves. They believe Satan is a "literary construct," the spokesman said, not an actual being with horns and hooves.

READ MORE: Satanists want statue next to Ten Commandments

The proposed statue includes quotations from poets Lord Byron and William Blake.

“Prisons are built with stones of Law, Brothels with bricks of Religion” runs the Blake quotation. The 18th-century poet was a Christian, albeit one with a mystical bent and little use for traditional morality.

The statue's main figure, Baphomet, has long been associated with Satan, Greaves said. In the 12th century, the Knights Templar, a group of Christian crusaders, were accused of worshiping Baphomet in their secretive rituals.

"From the mythology created by these accusations against the Templars, we now have a symbol for Satan pictured as a goat-headed beast," Greaves said.

Since the 1960s, a variation of the horned goat head has been the official symbol of the Church of Satan, which is not affiliated with the Temple of Satan. The head of the Church of Satan has told CNN he does not approve of the idea of a Satanist statue on public grounds.

Oklahoma state Rep. Paul Wesselhoft told CNN that he doesn't think the Satanists' statue will be approved.

“What will disqualify them has really nothing to do with Satan as such; it's that it has no historical significance for the state of Oklahoma,” he said.

Trait Thompson, chairman of Oklahoma's Capitol Preservation Committee, said he has not received the Satanists' proposed design yet. He also said that no applications will be considered until a lawsuit over the Ten Commandments monument is settled.

The American Civil Liberties Union has sued over Oklahoma's Ten Commandments monument, calling it an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion.

After news broke of the Satanists' proposal, the state was flooded with requests from religious groups seeking to erect monuments to their own faith, including Hindus and Pastafarians, a satirical religion that "worships" the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

An Oklahoma lawmaker told CNN that the Satanists' message wouldn't fly in the Bible Belt state, where nearly two-thirds of the population is Christian.

"Any monument displayed on state property should reflect the values of Oklahoma or memorialize those who built or defended our freedom," Rep. Bob Cleveland said Tuesday. "In my opinion, this Satanist monument does not meet with the values of Oklahomans."

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Church and state • Satanism

soundoff (3,489 Responses)
  1. brian

    Welcome to Oklahoma, where you have freedom to practice any religion as long as it is Christianity.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
  2. Religious Guy

    Ha ha ha....So now the Satanists need to only find within the statue something which reflects Oklahoma values. Not hard to do.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
    • inscient

      I'm sure some Oklahomans raise goats.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
    • tony

      A small dust bowl for a collection plate?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
  3. MadMarv

    I wonder if Megyn Kelley believes that Satan along with Santa is white?

    January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
    • Happy Atheist

      I'm pretty sure to her Satan is red and everything else is black and white...

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Except for the commie pinko socialists.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • inscient

          They are the offspring of Satan and Eleanor Roosevelt...didn't you know? That's why they're pink-o.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
    • Mercury

      Most likely. We should ask.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
  4. SamT

    The Ten Commandments don't confer any religion. Note that "The Hebrews" is not a religion. Religions are man-made constructs designed to control people. The irony is that Satanism is a religion, but not one where you'd get "inspiration" for anything other than all that is evil; Satan is the Great Destroyer. Rosicrucians state that he is a necessary evil, one that strips the demons from your soul before you go to Heaven. It doesn't matter if you believe this, the Roscicrucians and Gnostic Christians do.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
    • ME II

      umm.... Don't the ten commandments imply Judaism or its offshoots?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
    • inscient

      "confer"? The ten commands are the essence of judaism.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
    • snowboarder

      @sam, i suppose if you were to leave out any of the commandments referring to holy days and gods it would be ok.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
  5. Mein

    Maybe if these atheist actually knew the spiritual powers that satanists posses to carry out evil than maybe they might believe that both God and satan are real. Just maybe

    January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      Close but completely wrong.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
      • Mein

        thanks for a thorough explanation of your statement. I can now see why my statement is wrong.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
        • Gatorfan

          Your level of comprehension isn't up to the task.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • Mein

          what a cop out.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • inscient

          Your statement is devoid of evidence; therefore it is a baseless assertion.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
        • Mein

          hold tight while I figure out how to insert that evidence into this thread. Dont move ok?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
    • bostontola

      No, now if you were talking about what Odin can do, then I'm worried.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
      • ME II

        Don't you know that all those Yeti sightings are really ice giants?

        jk

        January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • ME II

      Eh? And what powers would those be?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
      • Mein

        do some research...you'll be quite surprised

        January 7, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
        • ME II

          Do some yourself, there is no solid evidence of spiritual powers of any kind.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • Mein

          Are you looking for scientific evidence there buddy? Cuz yea you're right. You cant measure something spiritual with something natural. It's SPIRITUAL

          January 7, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
        • inscient

          What other kind of evidence is there?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:02 pm |
        • Mein

          Who said scientific evidence is the only one there is? Does science say that?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          How would one identify and measure spiritual powers?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
        • ME II

          @Mein
          " You cant measure something spiritual with something natural. It's SPIRITUAL"

          Okay, Buddy. Like is said what powers would you be talking about that can't be measured?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:42 pm |
        • ME II

          That should read: "Like I said..."

          January 7, 2014 at 2:43 pm |
    • Mercury

      Or maybe OK should have kept their monument off if government property. They opened that door.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
    • snowboarder

      except they possess no power at all, just as any other religion.

      January 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
    • G to the T

      Did you actually read the article? They're pretty clear that they don't believe the devil is real. This is being done for political reasons, that you can't distinguish between the two is evidence to why there needs to be a separation between church and state.

      January 7, 2014 at 4:04 pm |
  6. Kaneda

    Is that what muhammad looks like?

    January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      Islam is a religion of pea....ka BOOM.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
  7. bostontola

    If they really wanted to "complement and contrast" with a Ten Commandments monument placed at the Capitol in Oklahoma City in 2012, I would have chosen a statue of a priest leaning over to touch a little boy on his privates. That would complement and contrast.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • SmartestInTheRoom

      I'm sorry, but how would it contrast?

      January 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm |
  8. the earth is full of stupid people

    ... and here I am in a boatload.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:46 pm |
    • bostontola

      The admiral I bet.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
      • the earth is full of stupid people

        no just a cook ...what do you want for dinner Captain?

        January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
        • bostontola

          The old "I know you are but what am I" comeback. You got me good.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
        • the earth is full of stupid people

          I did state I was not alone.. :))

          January 7, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
  9. me

    John 8:44

    44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:46 pm |
    • Observer

      me,

      In the Bible, God killed FAR FAR FAR MORE people than Satan.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
      • Carrie

        God created us and is the Potter. Please carefully read and study the Bible and then you will understand.
        I advise starting with the Book of John. Jesus is the WORD.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
        • Observer

          Carrie,

          I have read the Bible, that's why I'm an agnostic. Please read the Bible.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
        • sybaris

          Pretty sure reproduction was covered in 6th grade Health class

          Apparently you were absent

          January 7, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • G to the T

          Pots don't feel. Pots don't scream in pain. If they did, how many pots would a potter smash before you considered him evil?

          January 7, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
        • coral

          Jesus! Read the Old Testament, for god's sake. Jesus wasn't even born.

          January 7, 2014 at 9:08 pm |
    • Carrie

      Thank you! That sums it up.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Lies are unknown in Oklahoma.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • sybaris

      Quoting the bible is like an 8 year old stabbing at you with their pretend Star Wars light saber.............. cute and ineffective

      January 7, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
      • Live4Him

        So you prefer mockery?

        <><

        January 7, 2014 at 3:21 pm |
        • G to the T

          Sometimes when a calm word won't help, a hysterical person needs a good slap to snap them out of it...

          January 7, 2014 at 4:07 pm |
  10. tallscribe

    How's about we stick to separation of church and state and have NO religious representations of any kind??

    January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      Crazy talk!

      January 7, 2014 at 1:46 pm |
    • James Madison

      "Every new & successful example therefore of a perfect separation between ecclesiastical and civil matters, is of importance. And I have no doubt that every new example, will succeed, as every past one has done, in shewing that religion & Govt. will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together."

      "The Civil Govt, tho' bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success, Whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood, & the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State."

      Madison as president vetoed two bills that he believed would violate the separation of church and state.
      He also came to oppose the long-established practice of employing chaplains at public expense in the House of Representatives and Senate on the grounds that it violated the separation of church and state and the principles of religious freedom. (See Library of Congress – James Madison Papers – Detached memorandum, ca. 1823.)

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • Mercury

      That'd bee too easy.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
  11. Carrie

    Loving & serving the true God who created us is not religion! It's a trick of the world to say "see, religion doesn't work". Yes, I know. But a true relationship with Jesus does work! People mix them because they don't understand.
    Jesus died for all out sins and is the only way to the true GOD.
    i

    January 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Woe betide those who reject (INSERT HOLY BOOK) and the Word of (INSERT DEITY) for they shall never know the wonders of (INSERT AFTERLIFE).

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • Fred Phelps

      Jesus never existed, he was an illusion of the dark lord to lead us astray.

      Only he can lead us. The noodly god of light.

      Ramen.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
      • WarfRat

        May he gently embrace you in his noodly appendages. Remember; he boiled for your sins. Ramen.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
    • sybaris

      I love the "relationship with god/Jesus bit.

      My older brother......

      is 6'2"
      blonde hair
      brown eyes
      I know where he works
      his favorite food
      what makes him happy
      his wifes name
      his kids names
      what makes him sad
      when he had is tonsils out
      when he went on vacation last
      what college he went to
      his phone number
      his email address
      I can recognize his voice
      etc.,
      etc.,
      etc..

      THAT is a personal relationship

      You couldn't even pick your god or Jesus out of a line up.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • bcs2006

      A few questions

      Pretty certain the adam and eve thing never happened. Why did jesus have to die for our sins then, as repentence is acceptable in gods eyes?

      How much of a sacrifice is a guy making when he knows for a fact that he ends up in paradise after a few hours of physical pain? he didn't even suffer a typical length of time on the cross compared to historical acctounts of crucifiction.

      Why does god have to torture himself to make sure the souls of man can enter heaven? This essentially amounts to human sacrifice, you know that, right?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
      • sybaris

        Exactly

        Allegedly a spirit comes to earth, rents some flesh then returns to where it came from in its original form.

        Some sacrifice.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:03 pm |
  12. Cecily

    Has anyone seen any keychains or t-shirts with the new statue on it? If they are not too expensive, I will buy some.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
  13. The Dead Critic

    Put a hole in it and you could use it as an outdoor toilet!

    January 7, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
    • Truth

      No need for a hole.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
  14. Crashman

    “What will disqualify them has really nothing to do with Satan as such; it's that it has no historical significance for the state of Oklahoma,” Wesselhoft said.

    I didn't know the Ten Commandments were created in Oklahoma...

    January 7, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
    • Carrie

      Our country was founded on the 10 Commandments and it's values Crashman. Learn your history.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
      • QuestionEverything

        Wow, I guess you skipped history class if you think that.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        "As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion..."
        – Treaty of Tripoli, 1797

        No other Gods – not a law.
        No Idols – not a law
        No taking Lord's name in vain – not a law
        Keep the Sabbath – not a law
        Honour your parents – not a law
        No murder – illegal, but not unique to christianity
        No adultery – not a law
        No stealing – illegal, but not unique to Christianity
        No lying – only illegal in certain circu/mstances (testifyinge etc_ – not unique to Christianity
        No coveting – not a law

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
      • trex

        "Know your history!" "Do your research!" The first sign when someone doesn't know what dee fuq they are talking about.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
      • BRC

        Carrie,
        Not it wasn't, I would recommend you learn real history, not any individual's preferd version history. Our nation was founded the principles of freedom, personal responsibility, and respresentational governance. Our laws contain many very old principless that also belong to almost all religious constructs, including the 10 commandments, because those laws (don't kill, don't steal, don't lie to officials) have been present in pretty much all successful societies and commnunities, with or without religion, because cooperation is the only way humans succeed. If our governemnt was based on the 10 commandments, you'd think our paperwork would spend mor etime focusing on worshipping jsut the Christian "God", since that's what almost half the commandmants adress.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • coral

          Yes and our founders broke every one of those laws. We ought to be ashamed.

          January 7, 2014 at 9:12 pm |
      • Fred Phelps

        No it was not. Learn your history.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Epic fail there Carrie.

        You are the one who needs to learn your history.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
      • SmartestInTheRoom

        Carrie,
        Wow, just wow. And you bible folk wonder why we make fun of you.... I bet you can make that same statement in the same breath that you call yourself a true Patriot. An American.... Wow.... I need to lie down this is too much. I shouldn't have come here. I'm no longer having fun... Just disappointed...

        January 7, 2014 at 2:03 pm |
      • snowboarder

        @carrie, that isn't even remotely true.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
  15. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    This seems unnecessary. Believers have insisted here time and again that atheism is a religion. They should be receptive to a simple monument to atheism. Or would they claim that atheism, though a faith, is not a faith of Oklahomans?

    January 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm |
    • tony

      Very thoughtful

      January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
  16. Mp jojo

    i'm no atheist!...

    I a anti-theist. I'm glad there is no evidence whatsoever that there are gods.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      I'm a god and I am real.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
    • Soriano

      I guess you do not know entropy then.
      Or this:

      http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/designun.html

      January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
    • Billy

      "I am a God"
      –Kanye

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • Crashman

      Kanye West says he's a god.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
  17. flambeauxfire

    Do you even KNOW how much of an increase of tourism this will get you?
    GOLDMINE!
    Genius!
    Hey – I wanna sit in Satan's lap!

    January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      Is that a pitchfork in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm |
  18. kenrick Benjamin

    Well what's new, it's not the first time that a statue of a supposed God will be erected. This is why God said make no such image of him, because he is alive and can represent himself.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
    • flambeauxfire

      Huh! Well put

      January 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm |
    • sybaris

      and as yet this god has not represented itself.

      Evidence?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
      • kenrick Benjamin

        Sybaris- I don't know what evidence you are looking for, however seek and you shall find.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • sybaris

          again, evidence?

          January 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
        • inscient

          How about a public appearance to some group rather than a whacked out sheepherder all alone in the desert? That would be evidence.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:11 pm |
        • G to the T

          "seek and you shall find"

          The very definition of confirmation bias. I you believe god exists you'll find him...

          I would be willing to be that most atheists used to be believers. I KNEW god existed. But I have since learned otherwise.

          January 7, 2014 at 4:12 pm |
        • kenrick Benjamin

          Inscient- He already did that with the Israelites.

          January 7, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
  19. motionlessinpink

    Oh for goodness sakes, well maybe not. We used to have a lovely nativity on the courthouse lawn at Christmas time each year. We can't do that any more because it offended some people. Ok, I get that. I don't like it but, I get it. If we can't have the nativity then the satan folks can't have the Baphomet staue.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
    • QuestionEverything

      And the Christians can't have the Decalogue monument. Agreed?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      And neither can you have your 10 Commandments monument.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
    • SB

      You should read the article more carefully as there is a rather key piece of information you are missing.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm |
    • Carrie

      Amen to that Carrie! I'm offended by this Satan statue so you better not do it. Please cater to me.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
    • SmartestInTheRoom

      Hahaaha.... Yeah that's clearly the point, but opposite...or something.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
    • anchorite

      The article says you DID get your Ten Commandments. But now you want to keep out the Satan statue because people might be offended?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
    • G to the T

      "We used to have a lovely nativity on the courthouse lawn at Christmas time each year."

      Was there no room on your Church's lawn?

      January 7, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
  20. fred

    Perfect statue for atheists to remind them of the consequences of non belief. When children are brought up without God they are drawn to the beast that that promises to fill the void that God (or often gods) have occupied in all recorded history. Thousands perhaps tens of thousands of years worshiping because we instinctively know there is something greater. The atheist attempt to remove God by mocking or twisting science to support a godless worldview regardless if Satanic or willful ignorance will fail. At best they will succeed which can only result in the End of Days.
    This is the foolishness of atheism. A godless world is not to the atheist advantage as it is belief in God that allowed their freedoms in the first place. In a godless world only ruthless power rules by force of the most powerful godless being who rises to the top of the Tower of Babble. Gone is the opposition that attempted to love God with all their heart and love their neighbors. The Bible is clear these End Days will come and the Beast will sit upon the throne and declare himself god.
    It is a lose lose situation for the atheist.

    January 7, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
    • Gatorfan

      You should spend more time enjoying this life. There is nothing after.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
      • fred

        That is like saying you should goof off and have fun in high school and ignore planning for college. You are going to die and if you don't know what awaits then go ask someone who knows.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • Gatorfan

          Yeah, it's EXACTLY like that.

          Cripes.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          I asked my Scandanavian friend and he told me to make sure I die in gloriously in battle so I can get to Valahalla.
          My Mormon neighbour told me I need to learn the secret, masonic handshakes and passwords so that I can get past Joseph Smith and earn my own planet in the Celestial Kingdom.
          An egyptologist buddy said I should worry about how my heart will compare to Ma'at shu feather.
          My hindu co-worker admonished me for eating a burger, explaining that I'm going to get reincarnated as a dung beetle if I keep it up.

          Nobody knows for sure what happens when you die.
          There are countless afterlife myths.
          They can't all be right – but they certainly can all be wrong.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
        • Crashman

          Go ask someone who knows? Nobody knows. You may have beliefs about what awaits you, but you cannot know. Nobody has ever returned and reported back, or made contact afterwards, so nobody truly knows.

          If you want to talk about logic, then logic dictates that when you die, that's it. You stop functioning and your life and energy cease. The idea that some invisible part of your conscience floats away up into the clouds and lives with all your old friends is in no way logical.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
        • fred

          Crashman
          So, tell me exactly what physical or biological hooks tie the awareness and perspective of mind (soul) to what biological organ of the body? Tell me where you thoughts are located.
          If you are a physicist then tell me exactly how one piece of matter in the brain connects with another piece of matter to solve an abstract equality or inequality.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:31 pm |
        • fred

          Doc
          The historic pattern of seeking something outside of self that is greater than self is the source of our creativity. In short finding God is who we are and what made us who we are as individuals. To deny this is to deny that which is self evident. One can refer to the object sought at the unknown but most have assigned attributes reflecting the source to the unknown. Assigning an attribute of unknown shows a self imposed limit of creativity. Such a limit is unreasonable given there are no boundaries between the unknown and the knowable. The reason those who limit themselves by materialism or naturalism are godless is not because there is no God but because they refuse what is knowable. If you want to know any of the gods you mention you must remove the self imposed limits. If you remove those limits you will find god or gods to your liking (such as in your list). However, if you remove your preconceived notions about the knowable you will know God.
          As Paul said simply die to self.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • G to the T

          "So, tell me exactly what physical or biological hooks tie the awareness and perspective of mind (soul) to what biological organ of the body?"

          "Mind" (like "soul") is a misnomer. There is no mind apart from the brain. Damage part of the brain and the "mind" is damaged as well. That being said, we are natural born dualist. But before you get all excited, that has more to do with how neurochemistry works (i.e. feedback loops and the like) than any supernatural origin.

          January 7, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
        • fred

          G to the T
          I have little to add to the great minds that tackled dualism. No doubt how we process our world is impacted by the "hard wiring of our brains" which impacts who we are and how we see things. Point being life itself is more than the physical. That "life" is not tethered to the body and when one dies the physical turns to dust while the "life" that was that person does not change its form or nature. I think of this as the soul of a man, who G to the T actually is when all the physical things of this world are stripped away. I believe we are spiritual entities experiencing a temporary physical encounter.

          January 7, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
        • G to the T

          I certainly see your point fred but not any evidence to back up the claim for the existence of a soul/mind. What I do find is lots of evidence that when the brain dies, so does everything that was you (barring offspring and the contribution you made to the world at large) dies. When the brain is damaged, so is the mind. There is no duality, it's an illusion created by a feedback loop in your brain.

          January 8, 2014 at 7:57 am |
    • Mercury

      Glad you agree it should be erected.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
    • Observer

      fred,

      "In a godless world only ruthless power rules by force"

      The ancient Greeks believed in many gods and NONE was the God you believe in.

      Were they famous for ruthless power and force or were they famous for scientists, mathematicians, philosophers and creating educational systems?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
      • Buddy...

        You are having a big misconception here :
        "The ancient Greeks believed in many gods and NONE was the God you believe in."
        The Greek ones were not GODs, by definition GOS is only one if there are two types of something it can not be GOD.
        Logical definition implies this, because if there are two GODs they would have conflict.
        Therefore your deduction is unacceptable because the word GOD implies oneness,perhaps you talk about Myths.

        January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
        • Observer

          Buddy...,

          LOL! Please answer the question.

          January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • SmartestInTheRoom

          Hahahhhahahahhaahah.... ouch... just shot a cheerio out my nose...

          January 7, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
        • Crashman

          Aphrodite – Goddess of love, beauty, desire, and pleasure.
          Apollo – God of light, music, arts, knowledge, healing, plague and darkness, prophecy, poetry, purity, athletism, manly beauty, and enlightenment.
          Ares – God of war, bloodshed, and violence.
          Artemis – Virgin goddess of the hunt, wilderness, animals, young girls, childbirth and plague.
          Athena – Goddess of intelligence and skill, warfare, battle strategy, handicrafts, and wisdom.

          And that's just the A's. The Greeks had many many Gods they worshiped, and Zeus was the King of the gods, the ruler of Mount Olympus and the god of the sky, weather, thunder, lightning, law, order, and fate.

          All religion is mythology.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Maybe the One True God is Zoroaster or Brahman

          January 7, 2014 at 2:06 pm |
      • fred

        Your buddies the Greeks were famous for their pederasty. They used their power in a godless way. Godlessness is not limited to smashing toys of those with less power. They were very smart indeed. Even the mothers offered up their young boys into their hands because they received social status depending on the greatness of mind of the pervert they chose.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • G to the T

          And? Ancient hebrews/christians all but sold there pre-teen daughters to adult males as part of "marriage".

          Isn't it great that morals evolve along with society?

          January 7, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • fred

          G to the T
          There is a big difference between putting a 12 year old boy in the lap of Socrates and getting your daughters married off when they were ready to have children with a family the father and brothers respected.
          Exactly how have morals changed when it comes to sex and the God of Abraham through Christ in the hearts of believers today? Zip no change whatsoever.
          The change is with the godless and promotion of the new morality. God has not changed what is right. Man and woman are to leave their parents and be united as one under God.

          January 7, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
        • Laught or Retch

          Fred, You talk about the greek's being famous for pederasty. What are catholic priests becoming famous for these days? Somehow I don't think pederasty it linked to monotheism or polytheism.

          January 7, 2014 at 4:53 pm |
        • fred

          Laught or Retch
          I agree. My reply was to Observer who was holding up the Greeks as evidence that scientific minds do not God in order to not abuse their power.

          January 7, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
      • coral

        Not true – I believe in Hermes.

        January 7, 2014 at 9:01 pm |
    • sybaris

      Fred, you do understand that atheists don't believe in your Satan either, right?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
      • fred

        I am not sure we (believers) even know what Satan is other than the opposite of perfect goodness. Satan takes on many forms but can be characterized as the embodiment of evil. You believe in evil and know evil exists and try to rationalize it. A lion that kills all non biological cubs in a pride is not evil and Stalin was not evil right?

        January 7, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
        • G to the T

          Nope. I don't believe "evil" exits. So now what?

          January 7, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • fred

          G
          Are you saying good and evil are not part of the reality we know?

          January 7, 2014 at 4:38 pm |
        • G to the T

          I'm saying "good" and "evil" are abstract and subjective concepts. They have no objective existence what-so-ever.

          No man is a villian in his own mind.

          January 8, 2014 at 12:59 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      I'm sure I'll drop to my knees and repent the day I see the 7 headed, 10 horned, amphibious bear beast emerge from the water.
      Until then, I'm gonna hedge my bets.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
    • I Can HAZ Read

      Satanists are not the same as atheists.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
      • fred

        Satanists are godless correct? The new atheist churches are godless correct?
        I understand all the trouble atheists go to in order to pretend they are somehow not godless but they all are godless and follow the doctrine of godlessness better than most Christians follow the way of Jesus.
        Atheists can hide behind the "no beliefs" ideal however almost all of them do have very strong beliefs. Atheists are allowed religious freedoms in jail as are other faiths so the Courts do not see any difference.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Oh, fred. The statue is the perfect reminder to christians that we live in a country where freedom to believe as we choose is a protected right. If people of one faith chose to display relics of belief in a governmental arena, that opens the door to every other faith. It's all about fairness and equality. This is what it means to be an American.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:50 pm |
      • fred

        Nonsense, if a city in Oklahoma was founded by the Pope we should erect a statue of the Pope. We erect statues of Lincoln and even cheats like Clinton in his hometown. Now, if faith was not a significant part of the town historically but today is filled with say Buddhists why can't the people who own, and built the park put up artwork that depicts their belief? We are not talking about a government entity attempting to push their religion on others but display artwork that depicts who they are. How about you to Italy and tear down the historic artifacts of Christianity.
        Did you applaud when the Taliban tore down all the non Allah statues thousands of years old. I imagine not so there is a historical exemption we could agree upon. Towns today erect structures to display their character. Satanism is not the towns character nor is atheism and if it just happens to be Allah as in some towns in the U.S. the ACLU would not file a suit against the statue of Mohamed in town square.

        January 7, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • tallulah13

          So you think that the Constitution of the United States is "nonsense"? Really? If you don't respect the laws of this nation, you should probably leave this country and find some nice theocracy to live in. Maybe Iraq or Saudi Arabia.

          January 7, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
        • fred

          Get a grip the purpose was to prevent the government or those in power from forcing you to bow to their version of God which those in power always do. Even Stalin and Mao.
          It was not intended to strip God from the public square.

          January 7, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
    • coch01

      what does this have to do with atheists? This is a Satanist cult who want to put up a statue of a god. That, too, is anathema to atheists who believe is NO GODS.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • SmartestInTheRoom

      Whoa kool-aide abuser! You should go to kool-aide anonymous... Your family should have an intervention for your kool-aideism... You can rot your brain on that stuff you know?

      January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
    • coch01

      You don't need religion to have morals. If you can't determine right from wrong, then you lack empathy not religion.

      January 7, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
    • Fan2C

      fred,
      "The Bible is clear these End Days will come..."

      Heheh, The Bible is "clear" on the treatment of leprosy with dead dove's blood too... and how to breed special striped goats... and about which folks you may keep as slaves... and about those resurrected dead people who roamed into Jerusalem (that NOBODY reported upon).

      January 7, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
      • fred

        Fan2C
        "Heheh, The Bible is "clear" on the treatment of leprosy with dead dove's blood"
        =>read it again an you will see these are the cleansing rituals for those who were cured from various skin disease it was not the cure.

        "how to breed special striped goats"
        =>They were spotted and blemished but not because of a method of breeding but because of a dream given to Jacob by God. Sometimes God gives us a dream that comes to pass not by what we came up with in our cleaver way but because of what God did (i.e. Jacob took a bit too much credit)

        "and about which folks you may keep as slaves"
        =>slaves were the economy and the culture of the day and God always works with us where we are not where we should be.

        "those resurrected dead people who roamed into Jerusalem (that NOBODY reported upon)."
        =>matthew 27:53 was written by Matthew to the Jews so they could tie the resurrection of Christ to the Old Testament prophecy of Saints resurrection. The Saints will rise with Jesus in the End of Days.

        January 7, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.