August 28th, 2011
04:56 PM ET
My Take: God no longer in the whirlwind
Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.
By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN
As I am riding out Hurricane Irene on Cape Cod, I cannot help thinking about how differently New Englanders in colonial times interpreted these natural disasters. While we speak of the eye of the hurricane, they were ever mindful of the eye of a God who was watching over them, and sending storms their way as punishment for their collective sins.
A fierce debate among academics about secularization theory–the view that societies will become less religious as they modernize–seems to have been won by the skeptics.
Yes, secularization of a sort is happening, but only in certain places (western Europe, most notably). And it seems to be reversible (see the United States today vs. the United States in the 1970s). So simple versions of secularization theory seem just plain wrong.
However, one place where American society, at least, plainly seems to be growing less religious is in the realm of natural disasters.
When the Great Colonial Hurricane raced up the east coast and lashed New England in August 1635, its 130 mph winds and 21-foot storm surge were almost universally viewed in supernatural rather than natural terms—as a judgment of God on the unfaithful.
We still have Puritans among us today, of course.
Pat Robertson is notorious for turning natural disasters such as the Haiti earthquake and Hurricane Katrina into supernatural communications—God’s curse on Haiti or New Orleans for bad religion or widespread abortions.
And on the radio a couple days ago I heard a talk show host suggest that the one-two punch of the recent earthquake and hurricane were two thumbs down from God on the leadership of Barack Obama.
Still, American society as a whole no longer interprets natural disasters as signs of some coming apocalypse or evidence of some past misdeeds. And those that do (Robertson, for example) we generally regard as cranks and outliers—relics of a bygone age.
Some say science and religion are engaged in a battle for the soul of America. I don’t buy that.
I know there are bitter divisions over evolution and creationism, for example. But there are all sorts of spiritual arenas where science is mum, and vice versa. Science and religion run on parallel tracks far more often than those tracks intersect.
Hurricanes and earthquakes are one arena, however, where the language of science has almost entirely routed the language of theology.
Psalms 107:25-33 reads: “For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. . . . He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and the watersprings into dry ground."
Today, the overwhelming majority of Americans—including the overwhelming majority of American Christians—believe that when God has something to say He speaks in less dramatic ways, including the still small voices in our hearts and the slightly louder voices of the preachers in our pulpits.
When it comes to earthquakes and hurricanes, however, our authorities are geologists and meteorologists. Most of us interpret these events not through the rumblings of the biblical prophet Jeremiah or the poetry of the Book of Revelation but through the scientific truths of air pressure and tectonic plates.
As a result of this sort of secularization, we are much better at predicting the course of hurricanes. The Great Colonial Hurricane of 1635 arrived as a surprise and took many lives with it, including, according to the report of the Massachusetts governor John Winthrop, those of eight Native Americans taken by the storm surge while “flying from their wigwams.”
So we are better prepared, thank science. Our stories are far less dramatic, however. The overwhelming majority of Americans believe in God. But their God no longer acts out his fury as in Bible days. Our storms have not yet been tamed. But our God has.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.
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.
Physics-lite-To Andrew all Atheist;
It is all in One’s Description and Everyone Else’s
Interruptions over the Millennium.
Here are six peer reviewed “Nobel Prize winners”, no less.
Atheist you can pick one or all,
Sheldon Glashow, Steven Weinberg, Abdus Salam, Carlo
Rubbia, Simon van der Meer, and last but not least Richard P. Feynman.
All of the above “Nobel Winners” describe and illustrate their findings of
millions of particle collisions in the same way.
All of the elementary particles divide up into packets of photonic energy
[light energy ] that Turns [or ferments,] into two or more sub-particles and
some of the photonic energy [ light energy ] returns [or ferments,] back into
the original elementary particles.
It is called quantum electrodynamics/or QED
The EM-fields of each particle defines the amount of light particles /or the total energy
that is within each particle or sub-particle. As the EM-fields collapse back.
Atheist, you do know about “Nobel Winner” QED?
“Let there be Light and let the light ferment and the light became fermented”& there was the Heavens and the Earth.
If that is the case, I suggest you allow SMHMore to instruct and guide you through life, and I suggest that you rely on SMHMore, as you face the inevitability of death and the grave.
Perhaps the wisdom and skepticism of SMHMore can comfort and save you from the awesome reality of death and the grave.
Remember the last hours and words of Voltaire, a noted skeptic. Remember the last moments of Ernest Hemmingway, another notable skeptic.
Have it your way.
And this address my point how? I'm not as afraid of the grave as much as you apparently are.
Also, its funny you find 2 skeptics that reportedly renounced it on their death bed. They did it out of the same fear that you are exhibiting right now. There have been millions more that faced their last minutes with the same skepticism and disbelief they held their entire lives.
JOregon, thanks for your insight. Struggling with some health issues of a loved one and cannot begin to say how angry I am due to cancer....why would God allow such a debilitating desease to take root and grow not for the good of someone but for their demise? "Trust in his plan"??? Every fiber of your being is telling you to LIVE! CANCER KILLS! How is or how could that be "PART OF HIS PLAN"??? I don't understand and I don't accept that as a creditible answer! Science would logically assume that this is a natural population control mechanism. Which I am more inclined to believe. And I definately do not believe that he is so petty as to take out vengence on us through the use of natural destasters when he promised not to do so again! Maybe I am wrong about that...but it seems to sound right due to the "Flood"...based on the bible. Punishment is not being able to be with him in the afterlife....free will is ours while we live and the consequences of those choices come after death. So why do so many feel that he would punish you twice or more in some cases for your transgressions?
I am very sorry to hear that you have cancer. I will pray for you. No matter what we go through, and we all go through suffering, abuse, loss of loved ones, sickness, and even death, Jesus is by our side. He loves you. Read his word and pray (talk to Him – he is your best friend). Learn to trust in Him. Just know He has a plan for your life and ask and believe. Whether your cancer is cured or not ask God for His will to be done. When you believe in Jesus as your Savior, you can have a joy and peace that passeth all understanding as you live out your life. No matter what comes our way, we can rest assured that we belong to him and he will be there for us...always.
And now we have Michelle Bachmann jumping on the Divine Message wagon! She joked around about it, while 27 people, some of them children, lost their lives and flooding is causing so much human misery. She and Glenn Beck make a pretty pair, don't they??
They both make me sick, with their uneducated, hateful spewing.
Logic suggests that he is NOT the only God. If logic is correct, then how many other Gods, if any, are out there? Or...maybe God is a kid with an ant farm (that's us) that he has TOTALLY forgotten about and it's running amuck! I find it hard to believe that he would allow religious genocide in his name or in any other God's name if we are infact HIS children. Or he just doesn't care! Deseases, wars, droughts, earthquakes, hurricanes, tidalwaves, volcanos, meteors....you get the point. If there was something he could do then he would. What King doesn't want his people to know for sure that he is their ruler? My faith is not very strong right now due to sickness in my family...there are no answers...from science or faith! I am very angry.
Actually the Bible makes it clear that God doesn't cause or prevent natural disasters. Since the big flood that is. Rain falls on the righteous and unrighteous alike. Good things happen to bad people and bad things happen to good people.
In fact, the world is such that the unrighteous unbliever should thrive. If you don't believe, enjoy your day in the sun. This is the time for you to live it up and mock as many Christians as you so desire. Point to science as having all the answers. Rest easy in the knowledge that you are the result of a freak accident and that your actions and words have no consequences. That when you die you will just be worm food and won't have to worry about answering for how you lived your life.
Enjoy it as much as you can for your 70-100 years on this earth. Then pray to God, oh wait nevermind, HOPE that you weren't wrong. Because eternity is a REALLY long time to be somewhere unpleasent.
C'mon everyone, I have some made up stories I want you to believe in. I'll throw in a nifty little "Don't EVER use healthy suspension of disbelief" or I'll make up some horrible place of anguish that you'll be sent to as punishment for ETERNITY (that is forever and ever and ever and ever) and what is great is that if you do all I say, I'll make up a wonderful place that will fulfill ALL YOUR DESIRES.
THANKS! Now my "day in the sun" would go a lot better if you kep those thoughts to yourself.
Also care to join me that I'm right? You see, there's a chance I'm right and you all are wrong, there's a chance that you're right and the atheists, jews, muslims, hindus etc... are wrong. there's also a chance that the hindus are right and the jews, muslims, christians, atheists etc.... are wrong. And so on..... you are about as likely as I am to be right, but who do you think hades will punish more, the guy who worshipped the wrong gods or the guy who didn't worship anything?
One question. Why is you're religion the right one??? Why aren't the Egyptians right with their Gods? Why one God? Why isn't God a non intervening God? Who's right? Christians? Jews? Muslims? Romans? You're the one that is so egotistical. "We have to be special! God made us!" but in reality we are a very tiny planet in a sea of billions of galaxies which each galaxy has billions of stars and planets. You're nothing, we are all nothing. You just want to believe so bad that you're special and can't face the possibility that you're not a special person that will get paradise after you die. Grow up....
I blame all of todays problems on the Christians and the believers for no longer sacraficing live animals on the alter. Clearly this "just close your eyes and think about worshiping the lord" is not working. Bring back the killing of goats and first born children and fathers killing thier own, and lets really follow the bible.
I still wonder if it is possible that everyone who is religious actually worships the same god, but just interpret it in different ways. I dont know, just a theory.
There is one God and one truth. I will let God do his job and decide who is in and who is out. It is also up to Him as to who gets rewarded/punished and how that happens and for how long. All things are possible through God and if he decides to forgive everyone, that is up to him. All I have to go by is scripture and that says that most go some place bad and few get to spend eternity with Him.
Somedbody once said, "I would rather live my life like there is a God only to find out there wasn't than live my life like there isn't a God only to find out there is."
Think about it, if I am wrong I won't care because I will be dead. I also won't care if anyone is telling me "I told you so" because again, I will be dead. If you are wrong on the other hand........well, that is up to God as I mentioned.
OMG do we have to go down this road again?
Why are Christians so convinced that belief in the "imaginary friend for grownups" is required for good behavior? Or that belief guarantees good behavior? I'm an atheist, I don't believe in god or an afterlife, but I most certainly believe that my words and actions have consequences. Belief in god IS NOT a prerequisite for kindness, compassion, and empathy.
@STLBroker You live you're life like there is a God. I refuse to believe that if there was a God, he would be so vindictive, hateful and cannot even write a proper book with out going off on tangents of hate speech against Jews. If God created the entire universe in it's complexity, then why can't he come up with a book without contradictions and flaws?? If the God in the books is real, and I face what ever God is, and God says that all the stuff in the books were true then I would not want to be a part of a God like that I'd face my punishment. But I doubt I will have to do that. I CHOOSE to believe that if there is a God, he is much, MUCH better than the God that people talk about in the books. Will god punish me for believing in that he was better??
I think that when Christians use the pascals wager they do not really have strong faith. If there is no god then we will all just rot in the ground, but as a Christian I do not believe that will happen.
The fact the the earthquake and hurricane were "nothing" to worry about seems to suggest God was saying, "I won't punish you because you are all doing just fine.
Guys, please stop bashing us Christians. Go out and do something productive. Many Christians are serving needy people around the world as we speak. So are many athiests. Let's join them. (Or at least go back to doing what we get paid to do :P).
"Guys, please stop bashing us Christians.'
But it's ok for Christians to bash others that don't agree with them....duh....
Who's the aggressor, me or you? Ok, I'm going to take my own advice. Have a good day.
"bashing" christianity isn't required.
Religious types are fully capable of discrediting themselves completely just by saying aloud the idiotic things which they actually believe in.
Brad, take your silly god fictions and your evil bible, and shove them sideways up your aft ori-fice.
Prothero is such a joke. Religion held sway for millennia. Secularization is still in its infancy. Does he really think that a little ebbing and flowing in the US of today vs the 1970s refutes anything? Even liberal theologians are in the thrall of outdated thinking and just can't give up their illusions.
Funny how all these people talk about a "Loving and understand" God. God was so loving he asked a man to stick a knife to the throat of his son. Killed Millions of others because they were not living the way he wanted. Which seems to me like he made a "Mistake" or got a little angry and just killed everybody and started over. Whatever it is, it's pretty sad some people love this God more than they love their own children. You people make me sick.
You know He didn't HAVE to create you...just like He doesn't have to keep you alive while you bash Him, but He does.
@Skegeeace First, I don't believe he did create me. My mom and dad did. Second, In the highly unlikely chance there is a God and it's the Judeo Christian God, I don't recall ever ASKING to be created. Basically your saying that God got bored created us and then kills us when we get boring and based on whether or we followed his rules we get to spend eternity worshiping him or eternity burning is some fiery pit. That pretty much sum up your loving and understanding God?
God loves all his children right? Except the ones he sends to a place of eternal torment and pain and punishment.... but he loves them...
what a crock of *^&$
@Jack: Dude, you are so Old Testament! 😉 None of that wrathful god stuff in the New Testament. Jesus is the game-changer, who reveals a more forgiving God. That's the God most people who post here are referencing. Granted, nobody can prove (or disprove) the actual existence of a God, but the concept of a loving, forgiving God is the popular one today, thanks to Jesus' preachings and those of his apostles. Many believers pretty much ignore the Old Testament, because there's so much "scary" stuff in it.
Actually, Alex, believers generally ignore the nasty bits throughout OT and NT, because they are too cowardly to accept that their beliefs and their bible are a big man-made, self-contradicting crock of bullsh!t.
Grow some courage and put your childish sky fairy stories to bed.
God is in control everything. Is it possible God allowed the storm to come as discipline? Yes. Do I know that is what He was trying to accomplish? No. The only thing I know for sure is that God's son stood up in the boat and commanded a storm to go away while He was on earth. While Jesus is not on earth in bodily form, He can still calm the storms of life today. There is no storm (economic downturn, troubles with a spouse, etc.) that Jesus cannot help calm. What storm are you facing that you need His help with today? If you call on Him, He has promised to answer.
"The only thing I know for sure is that God's son stood up in the boat and commanded a storm to go away while He was on earth." Were you there? Did you see it or did you read it some book that was written in Hebrew then copied, then translated hundreds of time before it got to you.
Why bother giving free will and already knowing the choices we will make if he is only going to supposedly punish us for it? What if all those that just died in Irene were devoted Christians? Why them and not atheists or people of other beliefs? I'd have a better chance of believing mother nature was punishing us than god punishing us.
@JDJ: the storm came because our planet has warm zones and cool zones, due largely to the energy our atmosphere receives from the sun, and storms are how heat gets transferred from the tropics to the temperate and frigid zones. It's just plain simple atmospheric physics, not the wrath of any god. There are storms on Jupiter, Saturn, Mars, Neptune, too. One storm on Jupiter has been churning for at least 300 years (we know this thanks to the observations of scientists who have been watching the "Great Red Spot" for centuries), and it's not because God is mad at the citizens of Jupiter or testing their faith.
@Alex Gessong: Exactly!
@JDJ: "If you call on Him, He has promised to answer."
Jiminy Cricket tells us the same thing in "When You Wish Upon a Star" - "...no request is too extreme."
Eventually enough people will come to their senses and will pay more attention to objective evidence-based research and not the simple little fairy tales in religious texts that made sense back when humans were far less educated.
@ Steve GREAT! Now, I want the objective, testable, impirical evidence for where the universe(s) came from. After that, I want the objective, testable, empirical evidence for one species evolving into another complete species. I will take this empirical, unbiased, testable and repeatable evidence at cnncommentator at hotmail com Please, don't spend time bashing me here. I simply want the evidence. Easy enough, isn't it?
One of the worst things about the religious people is that they think that because science can't give you all the answers immediately that an ancient book is the obvious fill-in for anything missing.
You doubt JC's existence. I can vouch for it. He came into my store one day and did a miracle...got away without paying.
Get a telescope, or look at the images from Hubble, I'll give you some grade A evidence there that'll show the closest thing to the origins of the universe that are verifiable and tested.
Evolution, also easy enough: Want to see some fossils?
Then again another poster already beat me to it. The unbiased and tested evidence that you crave is already out there and easy enough to research now a days, but you refuse to not only believe this evidence and call it bias, but you also then insert the biblical version of god as the answer because that makes more sense to you. It's tiring and frustrating trying to convince someone of something like a big bang theory or theory of evolution when they won't believe the evidence staring them in the face (care to tell me why god gave us appendixes?)
just because we don't know the answer doesn't mean it was god that did it. There is tons of objective evidence out there for evolution. And the beginning of the universe could have been anything, it didn't have to be your god.
Also, scientists are working on it, while religious nutjobs are just trying to slow down scientific progress.
lol @ Horvath, there are tens of thousands of published peer reviewed, evidence-based research studies right at your own fingertips. After reading your reply I couldn't help but think that trying to rationalize with someone like that is like trying to rationalize with a 5th grader. My recommendation to you is maybe start with something like Google Scholar, then you may want to enroll in a university, pick a major such as physics, chemistry, biology, anthropology, geology (you get the point, I hope) and then look into a masters program, even a doctorate or phd if you really like it (then you can start to publish your own research). Once you are educated enough to have an intellectual debate and can act like an adult then we can talk. Good luck.
I believe that it is God trying to get our attention and we aren't listening. Americans have lost their way and I think things will continue to get worse until we clean up our act. Look at what we have done to our economy, our children, our planet, to people in other countries, to each other. Even if you don't believe in God, hopefully you understand that you can't abuse relationships with everyone and everything forever without reaping negative consequences.
Your beliefs shouldn't effect the rest of us. But idiots like you think that the world should be shaped according to what you beleive.
Mary, send some more money to your church. It won't improve the weather, but your pastor will be happier!
PS. If you live on the East Coast, you must have been really bad!
God is saving a place at the throne of judgement for you false prophets and seeders of discord, especially who use His name to do it...
@Mary S: economic ups and downs are just a fact of life in a global capitalist environment. Do you think the Great Depression of the 1930's was because Americans had lost their way? God doesn't control the economy. Humans do. By the way, the economic downturn is not just in America. It's global. Want to fix the economy? It's simple: consumers need to spend and businesses need to stop firing workers. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Otherwise, we've made no progress from the days when people cowered in caves fearing the wrath of their pagan gods. Keep this in mind, too: if you'd been born thousands of years ago in pagan Europe, you'd believe in Odin and Thor and Loki or some other set of pagan gods just as much as you believe in the Judeo-Christian God. And you'd have just as much proof of their existence.
@Mary, we've lost our way? Speak for yourself. I'm an American and I don't feel the least bit lost. What I feel is perfectly human, meaning that I have good days and not so good days, but I live according to my own "moral compass" and try to treat everyone with kindness and compassion.
God and science do not intersect because they are two totally different things. God is the Creator of the universe and everything in it. Science, on the other hand, is a process, a tool of discovery provided by God to man so that we can discover what God has created.
God is the creater of the universe? Who is the creator of God? If you say God has always existed does it make any less sense to say the universe has always existed?
Nice neat package, Greg, but won't sell. The evidence is hardly rebutable..it' IN YOUR HEAD...get it?
@Greg: God didn't "provide" science to humans. Humans invented science. Science helps us understand the universe. If there is a God, science may eventually find that God. Science provides knowledge. Religion provides belief, but not knowledge. Religion doesn't require rational thought, only a child-like willingness to believe. In that sense, it's no different from believing in fairies or unicorns. Science requires rational thought. If there is a God, it's likely that God uses rational thought. We live in a rational universe.
I did not say that the babies suffering in Africa were being punished by God. You did. Your twisted logic–not mine.
I am convinced that the corrupt and evil leaders in Africa bear much of the responsibility for the suffering of their people. The leaders are not going hungry, neither are their armies. This should tell you something about how evil these leaders are. Good leaders take care of their people, evil leaders take care of themselves, at the expense of their leaders.
Africa is notorious for corruption, and the people there have suffered, as a result of this.
God taught his people not to eat unleavened bread or bread without yeast, at certain times. This was done to impress upon them that there was to be no corruption, for yeast or leaven involved fermentation (decay), and such decay (corruption) ultimately leads to death.
@Barry G: and there's no corruption in Europe or Asia or the Americas, right? Why pick on Africa? It was Europeans who murdered 6 million Jews in WWII. It was European settlers in America who killed off entire tribes of Native Americans. Starvation in Ireland caused a great migration out of that nation. 25 million people starved to death in China in the 1960's. Wars, famine, corruption, are not limited to any particular continent or nation. I assume you're Christian. if so, it's wise to listen to what Christ said: "judge not, lest you be judged."
I hope I live long enough to see an atheist elected president.
I'd bet our last fifteen or twenty presidents have all been Bible-waving atheists.
I firmly believe that Obama is an atheist, or at the very least agnostic. He just realized a while back that in order to have any serious political aspirations he had to, at least publicly, prescribe to the Christian faith.
A majority of politicians seem to be "soulless" people who wave their religion banner to get sheeple to vote for them.
Is that funny or sad?
I'm willing to bet you already have. Unfortunately, any atheist who runs for political office is unelectable, so they probably pretend to be religious to get votes.
Bible clown is right...bible waving atheists...good work.
Our founding fathers were mostly NOT Christians. Some believed in a "Creative Force", rather than an immanent God.
So we started out part way to atheism. In fact, one could argue, we went all the way, since the Creative Force concept isn't too different from true Science, and certainly is compatible.
Incidentally, do you know the Greek Septuagint was mistranslated into Latin, and that mistranslation is now a bastion of the Christians. In John's description of Creation, he talked of 'Logos' in the Septuagint. This means framework. It was converted to "The Word of God" in Latin, but that is clearly wrong. Yet another case of selective fact usage! I suspect the edit was because Logos smacked of Greek philosophy. Oh well, it's only a minor tweak!
@Joe B: I firmly believe that you are a Republican. Your hate makes it impossible for you to accept reality. The reality is that your hero, Ronald Reagan, did not attend church. Reality is that President Obama is a lifelong church goer. You conservatives imagine all sorts of things: "he's a muslim", "he's in league with a radical Christian minister". Your obsession with the President is truly bizarre. Hate is not a Christian value. President Obama is a far better Christian than you are. Christ preached tolerance, forgiveness, and help for the poor. The President embodies everything that Jesus taught us.
Alex Gessong, wow...every single assumption you made about me is wrong. I don't even know what about my statement led you to assume any of that. I am an atheist and lifelong moderate democrat. I wish I could say something to embarrass you more but you already made a pretty big fool out yourself, I don't think I could do any worse.
Religion is for people who prefer someone else does their thinking for them. Weather comes from the Earth, which predates our species and life on this rock by several billion years. It sucks that the people who don't delude themselves with religion have to share a planet with the rest of you idiots who are constantly looking for signs from your imaginary friends in the natural processes occurring around the globe.
I love bashing religion as much as the next guy but, do not act like western religions are the only ones. There are plenty of great eastern "religions" that are far less restrictive then Christianity.
Flying Spaghetti Monster does not approve of what you say! May he have mercy on all of us with his noodle appendages.
How do we explain the teachings or the findings of people such as ... Edgar Cayce or Michael Newton? How do we explain the experiences from those like Robert Peterson and the countless other's around the world that have had Out of Body Experiences? (I'm not supporting any of these people but find it extremely interesting after study of these people)
@EnergyBeing3: the same way we explain fairy tales – fertile imaginations. People have been eating, smoking, drinking, and injecting various chemicals for thousands of years and had all sorts of "mystical" experiences as a result. There's also the possibility of mental illness or vivid dreaming. Interesting as the tales may be, we should always bear in mind that nothing should ever be accepted as "truth" without actual objective evidence. Otherwise, we may as well believe in fairies and unicorns, too. Or the Flying Spaghetti Monster and Cthulu.
I realize that I cannot convince you that global warming is a reality. There are many who refuse to accept the conclusions of the world's leading, most eminent scientists and scholars.
You can side with those who say that global warming is a farce: Big Oil, their lobbists, their lawyers, the politicians who accept their money. I will side with the world's leading scholars.
Because you pointed out the almost hidden but grossly obvious agendas of people who side with money reasons. Good job!
Warmerism is the the ninth great religion. The sad truth is that the facts the Church of Warming present are very selectively supportive of the man-made warming theory. It looks to me that Wamerism is a derivative of Gaiaism from the 70s, and suffers from the same "Feels good, damn the facts" symptom.
Warmerism has its own prophets (Rev. Al Gore, for one, its own Vatican (IPCC) and an Inquisition (see Rev Al today on 'racists'). Warmerists have another common trait with the big 8 churches: they take donations and don't offer much explanation for how they are used.
@John Blackadder: with the obvious exception that, unlike other religions, warmarism presents actual objective scientific facts to support its rhetoric. Facts like, the measured temperature of the Earth's atmosphere is increasing, despite the fact that in the natural cycle of the Earth our planet should be cooling not warming. Facts like, we can actually observe that there's less polar ice and glaciers are melting in Greenland, Iceland, etc. Facts like the snows that have covered Mount Kilimanjaro for thousands of years are melting Scientific proof may not be as "warm and fuzzy" feeling as political rhetoric is, but it's better to base our beliefs and actions on objective reality than on self-serving political dogma. It's easier to sit back, do nothing, and pretend the world isn't changing. That's what an infant would do. Grown-ups really shouldn't take that option.
Oh Dear! Not god's doing? Perhaps it's unicorns or leprechauns!
It's the 21st century! Are we finally getting past the stupid ancient myths of deities and demons??
Keep your stupid opinions to yourself.
How dare you.
Poseidon. It was Poseidon this time. Him and his trident. You'd figure a god would be able to equip a far more spectacular weapon than a darn three pronged fork.
Yes, Poseidon is responsible for earthquakes and sea storms. He requires the sacrifice of drowning horses to prevent his wrath. Now, who among you have honored him thus?
How can you not see that there is a clear correlation between the deterioration in the family and the actions of the children coming from these homes?
Teenage pregnancy is being cited as one of–if not the leading cause–of delinquency and crime, and it has been proven to have a direct bearing on behavior problems in school and academic performance.
I suggest two things: do your homework, before criticizing people about matters you do not understand; and, read the Bible, before you speak as an authority on matters of faith.
Or better yet, remain silent. This will conceal your ignorance.
bible is senseless myth. Religion doesn't make people good. Neighbors are S.Baptists ... all 4 girls are tramps, youngest has twins on her 16th B-day. Religion screwed them up. My kid is atheist, compassionate and kind, in a prestigious law school. Religion sux.
Have you noticed that teens have only really been identified as getting into trouble over the last century? That's because there was no 'teenager' phase in people's lives before that. Once puberty hit then girls were married off to become mothers often at ages that 'conservative' Christians would condemn these days, and young men went off to long hours of work, thus keeping them out of trouble. So maybe your complaint has nothing to do with people's morals, but the changing social structure and economy?
"speak as an authority on matters of faith" Another internet patriarch, ready to prophesy! Speak, O weird one, and tell us of the revelation that God has given only to you!
Barry G., I would wager that this SMHMore likely knows more about your religion than you do. That tends to be the case with most skeptics and nonbelievers.
some of the most promiscuous girls I have ever known were the product of catholic schools.
You nailed it, Free! Teenage pregnancies were the NORM in times past.
Mary was a teenager, and she wasn't a virgin.
You cannot be serious...if you are of the school of thought that God created the Earth, then you have to believe that he created the cycles that keep the Earth sustainable and able to provide life...storms move moisture and heat across the earths surface and stabilize our atmosphere, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions recycle the rock and minerals on the planet and make more usable land and add richness to soils. Also, if you believe in the Bible, then you should know that false condemnation and the spreading of false prophecies (attributing storms and natural phenomenon to God's "wrath") puts you in the same line of sinners as heretics, murders, thieves and rapists. Chew on that, Fred Phelps.
Daniel in Texas
Some Christians believe that God does not actively control everything in nature, but intervenes only occasionally, thus making it possible for him to control the weather directly when it suits him, as in the case of Noah, and create miracles like appearing on toast, but allowing plausible deniability for all natural disasters that cause believers angst. Win-Win!
Yup, my grandmother had the first of her sixteen kids when she was sixteen, and she wasn't pregnant when she got married either. When two of her brothers left home to find work one of them was 14, and the other only 12. This was all very normal back then, but times do change, and our morality has certainly changed with them, hasn't it?
Um, maybe there would be less teen pregnancy if you religious wingnuts would stop railing against condoms?? Seriously, what the 'fork' is wrong with you people? Psssst, yo, jeebus-freak, they also prevent the spread of disease, or was little pearl of wisdom not in your home school curriculum?