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Tokyo governor apologizes for calling quake divine retribution
Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara in 2009.
March 15th, 2011
02:23 PM ET

Tokyo governor apologizes for calling quake divine retribution

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

The governor of Tokyo apologized on Tuesday for saying the earthquake and resulting tsunami that left thousands dead were divine punishment for Japanese egoism, a leading Japanese news service reported.

"I will take back (the remark) and offer a deep apology," Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara said at a Tuesday news conference, according to Japan’s Kyodo News.

On Monday, Ishihara had told reporters, "I think (the disaster) is tembatsu (divine punishment), although I feel sorry for disaster victims," according to Kyodo News, which translated Ishihara's remarks from Japanese.

“Japanese politics is tainted with egoism and populism,” Ishihara had said Monday, according to Kyodo News. “We need to use tsunami to wipe out egoism, which has rusted onto the mentality of Japanese over a long period of time."

Read about how Japan's religions respond to tragedy

The death toll from Friday's 9.0-magnitude quake off the east coast of Honshu grew to 3,373 on Tuesday.

John Nelson, the chair of theology and religious studies at the University of San Francisco, said Ishihara’s remarks about divine retribution hark back to Japanese Buddhist ideas that fell out of favor decades ago.

He said the Japanese term “tembatsu” could also be translated as heavenly punishment.

“The way [Ishihara] used it was a prewar understanding of the will of heaven or the gods to discipline the Japanese people,” Nelson said.

“That understating of the gods having an agenda was instrumental to the ideology of the prewar years, when it was said to be Japan’s divine mission to conquer Asia and establish an empire," Nelson said.

Ishihara, 78, had said he was leaving politics but announced after the earthquake that he will seek a fourth term as governor in this year's elections.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Asia • Buddhism • Japan

soundoff (1,146 Responses)
  1. davegeorgia

    it was a natural disaster, and no surprise to the experts. there have been earthquakes along the ring of fire, and there will be more, probably on the US west coast. it's not a matter of "if", but "when". What is the lesson here? be prepared, get ready. when Jesus disciples asked about tragedy and accident, "who sinned that caused this?", He responded that the tragedy and accidents happen, but be ready to meet your Maker. God and eternity is not a myth, heaven is the right choice and all should listen to Jesus, He does not want you to lose your soul.......

    March 17, 2011 at 4:14 am |
  2. Satanist

    to Isabel and all those who share in her beliefs:

    You said "in the end, He is right. Every knee will bow down to Jesus, regardess of what we choose individually."

    That is where you are so, so wrong. There is one who remains unbowed before the tyrant you think of as your savior. Satan, the one that I have chosen as my lord, is the only remaining agent of free will in this universe. You're too blinded by Jesus' empty promises to see the truth; indeed, you foolishly embrace your own horrible subjugation and call it salvation. Do you know what it's called when you are forced to bow despite what you choose individually?

    Slavery.

    March 17, 2011 at 12:09 am |
    • ciao2u

      Satan is the father of lies. You can choose to believe evil is good if you want. But satan has been vanquished. He was defeated by Jesus on the Cross when he died for our sins. God is merciful.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  3. Cherokee

    The native american indians only took from the earth what they needed to use. They only used what they needed from the earth mother nature was fine until man came along looking for gold,oil and taking down the trees to build houses. Mother earth has been crying for a long time. Man realizes what he has done to her but now it is too late they cannot give back to her what they have taken and therefore she cannot heal because everytime she tries man takes something else away that is important to her. Man thinks he knows how to heal her but he doesn't. Man refuse to heal her because of his greed. He has chased the animals out of their habitats so he can live(how selfish).

    March 16, 2011 at 11:34 pm |
  4. Muneef

    Al-Baqara sura 02:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    How disbelieve ye in Allah when ye were dead and He gave life to you! Then He will give you death, then life again, and then unto Him ye will return. (28).

    Al-Hajj sura 22:
    And He it is Who gave you life, then He will cause you to die, and then will give you life (again). Lo! man is verily an ingrate. (66).

    Al-Room sura 30:
    Allah is He Who created you and then sustained you, then causeth you to die, then giveth life to you again. Is there any of your (so-called) partners (of Allah) that doeth aught of that? Praised and exalted be He above what they associate (with Him)! (40) Corruption doth appear on land and sea because of (the evil) which men's hands have done, that He may make them taste a part of that which they have done, in order that they may return. (41) Say (O Muhammad, to the disbelievers): Travel in the land, and see the nature of the consequence for those who were before you! Most of them were idolaters. (42) So set thy purpose resolutely for the right religion, before the inevitable day cometh from Allah. On that day mankind will be sundered- (43) Whoso disbelieveth must (then) bear the consequences of his disbelief, while those who do right make provision for themselves – (44) That He may reward out of His bounty those who believe and do good works. Lo! He loveth not the disbelievers (in His guidance). (45).

    Al-Jathiya sura 45:
    Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Allah giveth life to you, then causeth you to die, then gathereth you unto the Day of Resurrection whereof there is no doubt. But most of mankind know not. (26) And unto Allah belongeth the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth; and on the day when the Hour riseth, on that day those who follow falsehood will be lost. (27) And thou wilt see each nation crouching, each nation summoned to its record. (And it will be said unto them): This day ye are requited what ye used to do. (28) This Our Book pronounceth against you with truth. Lo! We have caused (all) that ye did to be recorded. (29) Then, as for those who believed and did good works, their Lord will bring them in unto His mercy. That is the evident triumph. (30) And as for those who disbelieved (it will be said unto them): Were not Our revelations recited unto you? But ye were scornful and became a guilty folk. (31) And when it was said: Lo! Allah's promise is the truth, and there is no doubt of the Hour's coming, ye said: We know not what the Hour is. We deem it naught but a conjecture, and we are by no means convinced. (32) And the evils of what they did will appear unto them, and that which they used to deride will befall them. (33) And it will be said: This day We forget you, even as ye forgot the meeting of this your day; and your habitation is the Fire, and there is none to help you. (34) This, forasmuch as ye made the revelations of Allah a jest, and the life of the world beguiled you. Therefor this day they come not forth from thence, nor can they make amends. (35) Then praise be to Allah, Lord of the heavens and Lord of the earth, the Lord of the Worlds. (36) And unto Him (alone) belongeth Majesty in the heavens and the earth, and He is the Mighty, the Wise. (37).

    March 16, 2011 at 8:54 pm |
  5. Muneef

    Their Ego was their disbelief.
      
    Az-Zumar sura 39:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    Say: O My slaves who have been prodigal to their own hurt! Despair not of the mercy of Allah, Who forgiveth all sins. Lo! He is the Forgiving, the Merciful. (53) Turn unto your Lord repentant, and surrender unto Him, before there come unto you the doom, when ye cannot be helped. (54) And follow the better (guidance) of that which is revealed unto you from your Lord, before the doom cometh on you suddenly when ye know not, (55) Lest any soul should say: Alas, my grief that I was unmindful of Allah, and I was indeed among the scoffers! (56) Or should say: If Allah had but guided me I should have been among the dutiful! (57) Or should say, when it seeth the doom: Oh, that I had but a second chance that I might be among the righteous! (58) (But now the answer will be): Nay, for My revelations came unto thee, but thou didst deny them and wast scornful and wast among the disbelievers. (59) And on the Day of Resurrection thou (Muhammad) seest those who lied concerning Allah with their faces blackened. Is not the home of the scorners in hell? (60) And Allah delivereth those who ward off (evil) because of their deserts. Evil toucheth them not, nor do they grieve. (61) Allah is Creator of all things, and He is Guardian over all things. (62) His are the keys of the heavens and the earth, and they who disbelieve the revelations of Allah – such are they who are the losers. (63).

    March 16, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
    • Cherokee

      Yeah we all have sometime of belief system you have proved your point. Oneday we will find out who we should have worshiped and who we should not have worshiped. Some people worships RATS some worship COWS some worship a God name Jehovah wo is the only true God.

      March 16, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
    • Cherokee

      Yeah we all have sometime of belief system you have proved your point. Oneday we will find out who we should have worshiped and who we should not have worshiped. Some people worships RATS some worship COWS some worship a God name Jehovah who is the only true God.

      March 16, 2011 at 11:50 pm |
  6. LeeCMH

    This is getting alot of comments from the hateful Christian crowd. Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council would be proud.

    March 16, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
  7. WIll III

    Typos.....urgh

    March 16, 2011 at 2:03 pm |
    • WIll III

      I must admit though this does make for a hilarious way to spend a slow work day.

      March 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  8. WIll III

    I'd say stop arguin about what to believe but you no you want, lets just say we all will find out what happens next soon enough, so lets just enjoy the ride eh?

    March 16, 2011 at 2:01 pm |
  9. WIll III

    wow!!!! I live in a nation full of smart @$$es, grammer nazi's, religious nuts, atheist, racist, dumb@$$es and poltic nazi's. I would say the old phrase God Bless America, but.......anyway thanks CNN for opening my eyes!

    March 16, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
    • Godless

      Grammar. AR at the end.

      March 16, 2011 at 2:01 pm |
  10. Billdacat

    ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please go away! All the religious rhetoric makes me nauseous. Divine punishment, reap what you sow, blah, blah, blah, blah... You have no right to condemn or validate the death of a single person based on what you think your "god" wants. Your "god", if you believe the HUMAN writings, is one of peace and forgiveness. Jesus, (one of the best socialists I have ever read about), would never have celebrated a single persons death, or said "I warned you", or I told you so"... that is petty and shows no compassion or remorse. All of you religious hyper-zealots, from every faith, (continually), disgust me.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
  11. amr71

    Freedom OF religion encompasses freedom FROM religion. The Founding Fathers didn't say we had to be religious but that we were free to choose from whatever religion we wanted. They said religion was nobody's business. Not the government's, not our neighbor's, but ours alone. What the Founders' personal religious convictions were is irrelevant, because they had no interest in foisting their religious beliefs (or lack thereof) on others through the power of governmental coercion. That was the whole point of what they set out to do. You are free to believe, or not believe, as you and your conscience see fit. Or as Jefferson so brilliantly put it, "It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg."

    March 16, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
    • Godless

      Exactly. You need to copy this and post it any time you see someone write that the Founder created this as a Christian nation.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:55 pm |
    • Magic

      amr71,
      "Or as Jefferson so brilliantly put it, "It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg."

      When I pay more taxes because wealthy churches are exempt, I consider my pocket to have been picked.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
    • Isabel

      We are all given the freedom to choose; God has provided for free will. You have the right to choose, however, truth is still truth. God is still the God of the universe. We don't dictate. we choose. our choice does not make it right. it makes us happy with ourselves and our decisions. in the end, He is right. Every knee will bow down to Jesus, regardess of what we choose individually.

      March 16, 2011 at 2:08 pm |
  12. Isabel

    meet him where he's at Dan, don;t laugh, just get into a dialogue. engage

    March 16, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
  13. Isabel

    my heart goes out the Chinese people and everyone affected by this tragedy.
    It is my deep believe that Gods hand is in everything His ultimate Wil is at work in everything. In His mercy, He has provided a way for eternal Salvation thru His Son Jesus Christ. we have become arrogant and lovers of self; bowing down to false gods. we make gods out of things and pray to them; offer them fruit. not realizing that they are man made idols.
    There is only One God and He will not be mocked.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
    • Godless

      "my heart goes out the Chinese people and everyone affected by this tragedy.
      It is my deep believe that Gods hand is in everything His ultimate Wil is at work in everything. In His mercy, He has provided a way for eternal Salvation thru His Son Jesus Christ. we have become arrogant and lovers of self; bowing down to false gods. we make gods out of things and pray to them; offer them fruit. not realizing that they are man made idols.
      There is only One God and He will not be mocked."

      I'll give you three guesses why no one should take this post seriously.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
    • amr71

      So your heart goes out to them, but you think your god is visiting vengeance on them. You and your imaginary friend are both sickening.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm |
    • Isabel

      I'm repling to GODLESS..... I'll give you three guesses why no one should take this post seriously

      What are the three guesses GODLESS?

      March 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
    • Godless

      Well, first, it's the Ja-pa-nese people that are dealing with this, not the Chinese. Second, you're beasically blaming them for this because they aren't Christian (which, by the way, has NOTHING to do with the disaster).

      March 16, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
    • JohnR

      @Isabel Maybe god won't be mocked (though I wouldn't bet on it), but you will be for calling the Ja-panese Chinese. See? There IS some justice in the world!

      March 16, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  14. GregG

    It's amazing that so many people here know for a fact whether God exists or not but they're too stupid to hit the reply button under someone's comment.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • Floyd

      Actually Greg, it is their faith that God exists, and you are the one that apparently knows for a fact there is no God. Your arrogance has you confused. If it bothers you so much, go to another place for debate. You are the one on the Belief Blog. Who's the stupid one?
      Also, there is something wrong with he reply system, so lighten up man.

      March 16, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  15. God Illusion

    Please, it's enough. There is no magical Sky Daddy – we should have evolved beyond myths, folklore and wish-thinking long ago. It doesn't take a genius to see that man's "religions" are destroying humanity. The specific religion that people follow is an accident of geography and local myths – nothing more. All the ardent christians here would be ardent hindus if they were born in India. Grow up folks – we are just intelligent mammals, get over it. Stop wasting time on fairy tales and dreaming of a country club in the sky after death where your friends and family are waiting – it's childish, fearful, backward and not constructive.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • Isabel

      There is only one God and He loves you more than you can imagine. You dont believe in Him but He believes in you. Dude, just call out and tell Him that if He is really real, to reveal Himself to you.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
    • God Illusion

      Cute – seriously, if that makes you happy and you aren't hurting anyone keep believing that. The tooth fairy and easter bunny need shout outs too.

      March 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
    • Magic

      God Illusion,

      Yep. Reminds me of a Christmas Eve when my little son was doubting Santa Claus... after brushing his teeth he was mumbling about some of his friends not believing. He held his toothbrush skyward and said, "I believe, I DO believe!" 🙂

      Afterward, when putting cookies/milk out for Santa, he ran to his room and got $1.65 in coins for a "tip".

      March 16, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
    • .

      @Isabel,
      "Dude, just call out and tell Him that if He is really real, to reveal Himself to you."
      Dude! Why do people like you keep saying this? It does not work.

      Tell me when the following works, then we'll talk.
      “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven." Matt 18:19

      March 16, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • Floyd

      At the top of this page on the right, CNN makes the following statement:
      “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.”
      Well, if religion and faith are not in your lives, why do you insist on insulting people, commenting and getting yourselves frustrated about people that write about their faith on this blog? Go to the anti-faith blogs and wallow in your misery and hate-on for life there. Unbelievable the amount of people that go out of their way just to belittle, demean and promote their non-faith. You are bullies and never really grew up and now need this outlet to vent about your unfulfilled lives. It’s not really the right forum for you if you just get frustrated debating faith on a faith blog. Of course there will be the faithful on here. Who are the real fools anyway? If you don’t like hip-hop music, don’t play a hip-hop song. You are the ones making the choice to participate. If there is no role for faith and in your lives and it only frustrates you, don’t read the articles, don’t read the posts and don’t get into a debate with a believer if you are that frustrated and it drives you nuts. Be nice, and chill. Otherwise, you’ll just get the blood pressure up and die of a stroke or heart attack getting worked up like that. Then you will be in real trouble as you face…well, the gates of hell.

      March 16, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • Magic

      Floyd,

      "Well, if religion and faith are not in your lives,... go [somewhere else]..."

      Religion and faith affect all of our lives... because when left unchallenged, laws are passed and public policies are formed which have a great impact on us.

      When rappers and hip-hoppers start doing that, they will certainly hear from us.

      March 16, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
    • Floyd

      Yes Magic, they are trying to pass legislation forcing everyone to Sunday school. See, sarcasm is easy and not very creative. Sarcasm is anger’s bitter cousin as they say.

      You are not challenging anyone here on a belief blog that will create the change you want. Continually insulting, demeaning and mean-spirited behavior will not win any debate and credibility is lost. Let the faithful be faithful and the non-believers be non-believers. Debate the role of Religion in government (which I believe there should be none) instead, but you and others are insulting and demeaning to people who have a right to their faith as much as you have a right not to believe. There is too much hate everywhere and nothing gets accomplished, either legislatively, morally or socially.

      March 16, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
  16. a guy

    this isn't a religion discussion, is it? everyone makes up reasons to explain things they cannot fully understand, hence the birth of religion in the first place. tokyo's governor's comments were a little insensitive in that while greedy events could've lead up to this disaster, much like in the US economic meltdowns, the worst offenders are not scathed, but rather the innocent are hit the hardest.

    save your god and baby jesus babble who cares. shirley phelps comes to mind. in the spirit of st. padraig, "save yer breath fer coolin' yer pie". weirdos.

    March 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  17. montyross

    when will americas divine retribution come for millions of abortio.....

    March 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • Rick

      When redneck animal fornicating Jesus freaks like yourself finally take a well-deserved dirt nap.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
    • dee

      We already have... your here aren't you??

      March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      You talking about the abortions of which 70% are for believers?

      March 16, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • Observer

      montyross,

      The Bible offers more arguments to support abortion than oppose it.

      March 16, 2011 at 7:30 pm |
  18. frasier6670

    This man is absolutely correct and should not apologize. That is his truth. I'm sorry to say, but all tragedies like this are karma. There is karma for every country as well as for each individual. "You reap what you sow" which is a quote right out of the bible is a clear indication of this. Some tragedies lead people closer to GOD and some people were destined to die this way. This is life folks and it's only going to get alot worse for humanity especially since we abuse our planet and its creaturs so bad and especially since there are so many walking this planet who deny there is a GOD ...

    March 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • Sean

      Which GOD are you referring to?

      Karma (Sanskrit: कर्म IPA: [ˈkərmə] ( listen);[1] Pali: kamma) in Indian religions is the concept of "action" or "deed", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect (i.e., the cycle called saṃsāra) originating in ancient India and treated in Hindu, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh philosophies.[2]

      'Karma' is an Indian religious concept in contradistinction to 'faith' espoused by Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), which view all human dramas as the will of God as opposed to present—and past—life actions.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
    • Eric Cartman

      @Sean
      Thanks for clearing it up for us

      March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • Mark C

      Frasier, do the world a favor and blow the dog sh1t that passes for your brains out now.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
    • Rick

      Your "Jesus" (yee-shu) is a joke.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
    • Billdacat

      ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please go away! All the religious rhetoric makes me nauseous. Divine punishment, reap what you sow, blah, blah, blah, blah... You have no right to condemn or validate the death of any single person based on what you think your "god" wants. Your "god", if you believe the HUMAN writings, is one of peace and forgiveness. Jesus would never have celebrated or said "I warned you", or I told you so"... that is petty and shows no compassion or remorse. You disgust me.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
    • amr71

      God didn't cause the earthquake. The shifting of tectonic plates did. There's this little thing called science that you might want to check out sometime.

      If there really is some supreme being out there, I'm sure he has better things to do than shake around the inhabitants of one nation on one of billions of planets in one of billions of universes. Humans think they're so important that this being would spend all his time keeping score on the inhabitants of this tiny little speck of dirt. What arrogance, what egotism. Not to mention that a supreme being would be above such petty and spiteful actions. Those are small, ugly human emotions, not the way a perfect being would act. We project our own desires, hopes, fears, and hatreds onto our favorite supernatural beings without realizing it.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
  19. A Mom

    Bible says that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Question: what would it take for that to occur? Some might think it would be by force. I'll offer this...It won't be forced at all. On the day you are in the presense of an awesome, merciful, loving God, the knees will bow and the tongues confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. There will not be any debate on that day. Better to know Him on this side, friend.

    March 16, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • Sean

      gibberish

      March 16, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • Eric Cartman

      Are you talking about Christmas, Ramadan or Hanukkah ??

      March 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
    • Mark C

      Stuff a sock in it, half-wit.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • Emme

      Amen! We are in the end times...the Bible is very clear about every single thing that is happening. Nations will rise up against nations. There will be great floods and disasters. There will be strife within families. No peace. No rest for the weary. Jesus Christ is coming, and He's coming soon. I'd hate to find out after the fact, when it's too late.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
    • Spiritual Warming

      YOU NEED TO DO COMMANDMENTS BECAUSE THIS IS THE WILL OF THE FATHER AND ONLY THE ONES THAT DO THE WILL OF THE FATHER WILL GO HEAVEN SAID JESUS:Matthew 7.21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

      March 16, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
    • Dan Halen

      LOL – Such intellectual replies by the Atheist crowd. Come on morons, you can do better than that!

      March 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
    • Watcher

      You are a mom? I feel sorry for your kids! With blather like you spew they will have polluted minds.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
    • Smite Me

      Dan Halen,

      Yeah, like this mindless drone would comprehend an 'intellectual' argument....

      March 16, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
    • MK

      You are plain stupid.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • Godless

      Emme wrote: "Amen! We are in the end times...the Bible is very clear about every single thing that is happening. Nations will rise up against nations. There will be great floods and disasters. There will be strife within families. No peace. No rest for the weary. Jesus Christ is coming, and He's coming soon."

      Right. Never before, in the history of mankind, have nations rised up against other nations, have there been great floods or disasters, have families dealt with strife, etc.

      I'll give the writers of the bible credit – they understood human nature. They understood that there will always be war, always be bad weather, and that if they wrote that these acts are a result of god, future generations would believe it. They know that this would be the key to remaining in power, remaining relevant. They were right. They have exerted mind control over beings that were born millenia after they themselves died. That, my friends, is impressive. Dangerous, scary, but impressive.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • Observer

      There's been plenty of name-calling from both atheists and believers here. The main difference is the hypocrisy of the believers who ignor the Bible saying those that do that are going to Hell.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • hillary

      Psalm 14:1 – The fool says in his heart, "There is no God".

      It is interesting to see how mean spirited the responses are to this. What if the comment were about Isalm?

      To "A Mom" – Bravo! Well said. Your children are fortunate to have you as a faith-filled mother who will raise them up in the knowledge of the Lord.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
    • Faleela

      One of the craziest things I see with the Jewish, Christian, Muslim faiths is that people who do finite sins, will suffer an eternity in Hell. I've commonly heard that good people go to Hell, if they don't believe in a particular faith. That makes no sense. Why would a merciful God condemn people to an eternity in Hell? That is definitely not merciful. Not to mention that all of this different religions believe in three different ways to obtain some sort of salvation.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
    • amr71

      @hilary – of course your little book is going to denigrate non-believers. How would they keep the faithful in line if they said "Well, you know, those who say there is no god may have a point."

      March 16, 2011 at 2:05 pm |
    • JohnR

      @Emme Nations have risen against nations for as long as there have been nations. Natural disasters from earthquakes and floods and epidemics have occured since long BEFORE there were nations. You gotta be more than run-of-the-mill clueless to look at what's happening in the world today and think it's unprecedented or a sign of anything but same stuff, different epoch. Christianity will be extinct long before the world ends.

      March 16, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
    • Lynette

      I have to say AMEN ON THAT ONE. Bow now or bow later. But of course you have negativitiy that doesn't agree but I say time tells everything and God (Jesus) was, is and will forever be in control.

      March 16, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
    • YoungBrave

      People have been saying that since the new testament was written, and where is your supposed apocalypse? I call BS. All of those prophecies from the end times are just the same natural disasters that have been happening since the beginning of time.

      March 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
    • The Woof

      You are a very wise woman as are some of the others whose comments I have read. The end of this system, controlled and ran by the Cast Out One, is coming to an end and I just hope and pray that many will not be found wanting at the time of judgement. I truly feel sorry for those that mock the truth that has been so generously and lovingly given but I also pray that that same truth enters their heart.

      March 16, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
    • Magic

      Woof,

      "The end of this system, controlled and ran by the Cast Out One,..."

      Religion has pretty much controlled the world for some time now... does that mean that it is the Cast Out One?

      Seriously, there is NO Cast Out One... any more than there is a monster under your bed or in your closet at night.

      March 16, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
    • PeterVN

      "A Mom", how is it again that your "awesome, merciful, loving God" just allowed a horrible disaster and horrible suffering such as the recent compound disaster in Sendai to happen? (And yes, a few Christians have died along with all the other poor thousands of other victims of the recent tsunami). Any such "god" would have to be deemed a complete as-s-hole.

      If you are really a "Mom", then please do the world a favor and at least let your kids out of the house from time to time such that they might at least have the chance to learn about better ideas than yours.

      March 16, 2011 at 7:51 pm |
    • taxpayer

      I worship Santa Claus - there's more real evidence he exists.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
    • Ex-believer

      Teaching kids religion is like giving them poison. Not only does it fill them with lies, when they find out the truth they feel (rightly) anger that they've been deceived by their parents.

      March 17, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
  20. Charlie K

    At least they didn't make him commit sepuku.

    March 16, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
    • Eric Cartman

      Good joke!
      I actually don't log on to CNN for the news. I like all the wise cracks people leave on the comment section.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
    • Mando

      Organized religion is the root of all evil.

      March 16, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
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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.