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When religious beliefs become evil: 4 signs
The Branch Davidians, a religious sect led by David Koresh, clashed with federal agents in 1993 in Waco, Texas.
April 28th, 2013
06:00 AM ET

When religious beliefs become evil: 4 signs

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - An angry outburst at a mosque. The posting of a suspicious YouTube video. A friendship with a shadowy imam.

Those were just some of the signs that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, accused of masterminding the Boston Marathon bombings, had adopted a virulent strain of Islam that led to the deaths of four people and injury of more than 260.

But how else can you tell that someone’s religious beliefs have crossed the line? The answer may not be as simple you think, according to scholars who study all brands of religious extremism. The line between good and evil religion is thin, they say, and it’s easy to make self-righteous assumptions.

“When it’s something we like, we say it’s commitment to an idea; when it’s something we don’t like, we say it’s blind obedience,” said Douglas Jacobsen, a theology professor at Messiah College in Pennsylvania.

Yet there are ways to tell that a person’s faith has drifted into fanaticism if you know what to look and listen for, say scholars who have studied some of history’s most horrific cases of religious violence.

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“There are a lot of warning signs all around us, but we usually learn about them after a Jim Jones or a David Koresh,” said Charles Kimball, author of “When Religion Becomes Evil.”

Here are four warning signs:

1. I know the truth, and you don’t.

On the morning of July 29, 1994, the Rev. Paul Hill walked up to John Britton outside an abortion clinic in Pensacola, Florida, and shot the doctor to death. Hill was part of a Christian extremist group called the Army of God, which taught that abortion was legalized murder.

Hill’s actions were motivated by a claim that virtually all religions espouse: We have the truth that others lack.

Those claims can turn deadly when they become absolute and there is no room for interpretation, Kimball says.

“Absolute claims can quickly move into a justification of violence against someone who rejects that claim,” Kimball said. “It’s often a short step.”

Healthy religions acknowledge that sincere people can disagree about even basic truths, Kimball says.

The history of religion is filled with examples of truths that were once considered beyond questioning but are no longer accepted by all followers: inerrancy of sacred scripture, for example, or the subjugation of women and sanctioning of slavery.

If someone like Hall believes that they know God’s truth and they cannot be wrong, watch out, Kimball says.

“Authentic religious truth claims are never as inflexible as zealous adherents insist,” he writes in “When Religion Becomes Evil.”

Yet there’s a flip side to warnings about claiming absolute truth: Much of religion couldn’t exist without them, scholars say.

Many of history’s greatest religious figures – Moses, Jesus, the Prophet Mohammed – all believed that they had discovered some truth, scholars say.

Ordinary people inflamed with a sense of self-righteousness have made the same claim and done good throughout history, says Carl Raschke, a theology professor at the University of Denver in Colorado.

The Protestant Reformation was sparked by an angry German monk who thought he had the truth, Raschke says.

“Martin Luther’s disgust at the worldliness of the papacy in the early 1500s inspired him to become a radical revolutionary whose ideas overturned the entire political structure in Europe,” Raschke said.

So how do you tell the difference between the healthy claims of absolute truth and the deadly? Scholars say to look at the results: When people start hurting others in the name of their religious truth, they’ve crossed the line.

2. Beware the charismatic leader.

It was one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in Japanese history. In March 1995, a religious sect called Aum Shinrikyo released a deadly nerve gas in a Tokyo subway station, leaving 12 people dead and 5,000 injured.

Two months later, Japanese police found Shoko Asahara, the sect’s founder, hiding in a room filled with cash and gold bars. Kimball, who tells the story of the sect in “When Religion Becomes Evil,” says Asahara had poisoned the minds of his followers years before.

Asahara demanded unquestioned devotion from members of his sect and isolated followers in communities where they were told that they no longer needed to think for themselves, Kimball says.

Any religion that limits the intellectual freedom of its followers, he says, has become dangerous. “When you start to get individuals who are the sole interpreters of truth, you get people who follow them blindly."

Charismatic leaders, though, often don’t start off being cruel. Jim Jones, who led the mass suicide of his followers in South America, was a gifted speaker who built an interracial church in San Francisco that did much good in the community. Few people at the beginning of his ministry could predict what he would become.

As time went on, though, his charisma turned cruel as he tolerated no questions to his authority and became delusional.

“Charismatic leadership is important, but in healthy religions, there’s always a process where questions are encouraged,” Kimball said.

Weaning followers away from corrupt charismatic leaders and bad religion can take years, but it can be done if one knows how to speak their language, says Ed Husain, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.

Countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt will often deploy imams to reach out to young men in prison who have adopted “Islamism,” or extreme forms of Islam sanctioning violence against civilians, says Husain, who has written about Muslim extremism.

These Muslim clerics know the Quran better than the extremists and can use their knowledge to reach extremists in a place that logic and outsiders cannot penetrate, Husain said.

“The antidote to extremism is religion itself,” Husain said. “The problem is not to take Islam out of the debate but to use Islam to counter Islamism.”

3. The end is near.

In 1970, an unknown pastor from Texas wrote a book called “The Late, Great Planet Earth.” The book, which linked biblical prophecy with political events like Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War, predicted the imminent return of an antichrist and the end of the world.

Author Hal Lindsey’s book has sold an estimated 15 million copies and spawned a genre of books like the “Left Behind” series. Many people are fascinated by the idea that the heavens will open soon because the end is near.

That end-times theology can turn lethal, though, when a follower decides that he or she will speed up that end-time by conducting some dramatic or violent act, says John Alverson, chairman of the theology department at Carlow University in Pittsburgh.

“A religious terrorist mistakenly believes that God has ordained or called him or her to establish the will of God on Earth now, not gradually and not according to the slow and finicky free will of other humans,” Alverson said.

Yet this impulse to see God’s intervention in human affairs now and not in some distant future can also be good, he says.

There are vibrant religious communities that teach that political and economic injustice must be addressed now. Liberation theology, for example, was a movement among pastors and theologians in Latin America that called for justice for the poor now, not in some future apocalyptic event, Alverson says.

“Hope is a good breakfast but not much of a supper,” Alverson said. “We can’t just live on the hope that justice will happen; we have to actually experience justice from time to time so that our hope can continue.”

4. The end justifies the means.

It was one of the biggest scandals the Roman Catholic Church ever faced, and the repercussions are still being felt today.

In January 2002, the Boston Globe published a story about Father John Geoghan, a priest who had been moved around various parishes after Catholic leaders learned that he had abused children. It was later revealed that Catholic officials had quietly paid at least $10 million to settle lawsuits against Geoghan.

Kimball says the Catholic scandal revealed another sign that a faith has turned toxic: Religious figures start justifying doing something wrong for a higher good.

 “The common theme was trying to protect the integrity of the church,” Kimball said of some Catholic leaders who covered up the crimes. “You get all of these rationalizations that we can’t let this scandal bring the whole church down, so we have to pay off this family and send the priests off to rehab.”

Religion is supposed to be a force for good. Still, it’s common that everyone from suicide bombers to venal church figures finds ways to justify their behavior in the name of some higher good.

Those rationalizations are so pervasive that religious movements that avoid them stand out, scholars say.

Jacobsen, the theology professor from Messiah College, cited the civil rights movement. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and his fellow activists renounced violence, even as they were attacked and sometimes murdered.

“They were willing to lay down their lives for what they believed in, but what’s incredible is, they practiced not retaliating when they suffered violence,” he said. “Those people really believed that God created everyone equal, and they were committed to the point of death.”

In some ways, it’s easy to say we would never adopt a form of religion that’s evil. But when we use the word “evil” to describe those who kill in the name of their faith, we’re already mimicking what we condemn, Jacobsen says.

In his new book, “No Longer Invisible: Religion in University Education,” Jacobson writes that calling a religion evil is dangerous because “bad or wrong actions can be corrected, but typically evil needs to be destroyed.”

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

“To label someone or something as evil is to demonize it, putting it in a category of otherness where the rules of normal life do not apply, where the end often justifies almost any means,” Jacobson writes.

And when we do that, we don’t have to read about radical imams or look at angry YouTube videos to see how easy it is for someone to drift toward religious extremism, he says.

We need only look at ourselves.

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Books • Catholic Church • Christianity • Courts • Culture wars • Egypt • Fundamentalism • History • Islam • Jesus • Leaders • Moses • Muslim • Quran

soundoff (3,810 Responses)
  1. Science

    Science

    Hey faith..................the peach........... did you learn or hear from that Discovery show about the LAND BRIDGE ?

    How many years ago did we cross into North America ?

    Also is place maybe for International RR ?

    May 21, 2013 at 6:35 am | Report abuse | Reply

    Science

    Kepler or not, we'll find life in space

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/20/opinion/urry-kepler-malfunction/index.html?hpt=op_t1

    Evolving Planets Get a Bumpy Ride

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120305131756.htm

    Where Does All Earth's Gold Come From? Precious Metals the Result of Meteorite Bombardment, Rock Analysis Finds

    Not by the horn-y red thingy CHAD !

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110907132044.htm

    Peace

    May 21, 2013 at 6:06 am | Report abuse | Reply

    May 21, 2013 at 6:47 am |
    • Science

      Science

      Is that you peachy ...............below with the fake handle ?

      soundoff (10,401 Responses)

      Science

      What a moron I am
      Moron is a term once used to denote mild mental retardation.

      May 21, 2013 at 11:33 am | Report abuse | Reply

      Science

      Fake handle above............. talking about yourself aye ?

      Have a graet life !

      Keep deleting pages ?

      May 21, 2013 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      Oops.............great life.

      Peace

      May 21, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      From google...........search.

      When Christians become a 'hated minority'. – The Richard Dawkins ...

      http://www.facebook.com/RichardDawkinsFoundation/.../1015158353714515...‎

      Peace

      May 21, 2013 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      http://www.ibtimes.com/atheists-fight-gideon-bibles-books-christopher-hitchens-richard-dawkins-georgia-state-parks-1271125

      May 21, 2013 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      You might enjoy that last link................fake science.handle............... above aye ?

      May 21, 2013 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      Or is that you peachy.................or ...........could be the cats ?..............OR ?

      faith

      there it is again

      more dodo kfc commercials they now raise boneless chickens

      contact the fbi and lock these criminals up

      May 21, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse | Reply

      Science

      You will enjoy this faith NO .............chagie too ?

      http://www.ibtimes.com/atheists-fight-gideon-bibles-books-christopher-hitchens-richard-dawkins-georgia-state-parks-1271125

      May 21, 2013 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      Science books........videos.............trumps the 666.................beast.................or red horn-y thingy....does it

      NOT ........peachy ?

      May 21, 2013 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |

      https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/19/proofs-of-heaven-popular-but-not-with-the-church/comment-page-48/#comments

      May 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      Creationism VS Evolution.................and the chondrites............fossils win..........time for the fairy to get

      the HELL OUT otf the way OK !

      Peace

      May 21, 2013 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |

      Science

      All....................over ...............what....................OLD .$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ !

      May 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |

      https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/05/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority/

      May 21, 2013 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply

      May 21, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
  2. RESISTANCE

    The whole stinking crappy muslim religion has an absolute claim that dictates they must destroy any non believers (infidels).

    May 20, 2013 at 10:57 am |
    • Gayle Gill

      You're Evil Resistance! Stop the LIES!!! Never in the Qur'an does it say to kill innocent people. Yes, it does say to kill people who attack you first but if they stop fighting you then the Muslims have to stop also.

      May 20, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Gayle Gill

      And resistance, Infidel isn't an Islamic word. It's Kufr! Also it says in the Qur'an there is no complusion in Religion. Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world and no one is forcing Islam on anyone.

      May 20, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
    • Don

      Gayle Gill- You say no one is forcing Islam on people, did you forget about Pakistan and Bangladesh? The Muslims in those countries are frequently ruthless to anyone they deem to be infidels and make up false stories to excuse their blind rage against non-muslims. If you were attacked or had your family home burned down by the blood thirsty mobs of Pakistan and Bangladesh I don't think you would claim that an outside religion was being forced upon you!

      May 20, 2013 at 9:23 pm |
  3. shawbrooke

    I'd agree with items 3 and 4. But there are tons of charismatic leaders who cause no evil, for example Billy Graham and other denominationally connected leaders.

    I'd say that everyone has the right to find out what they believe and think that what they believe is best. If believing that you know what is right and all others are wrong is a sign of danger, all those secular humanist guidance teachers are certainly cause for concern.

    May 20, 2013 at 1:53 am |
    • sam stone

      "...there are tons of charismatic leaders who cause no evil, for example Billy Graham "

      Like opposing equal rights for a portion of the population

      May 20, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      and disparaging jews. . .

      May 20, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
    • Buck Mast

      the article did NOT address the Most Main mark of a cult-Nero-errorism:a 3 fold belief that marks ALL cults 1>We are the 1 true Church,that is us and there is no other2.You HAVE to be in our church in order to be saved,there is no salvation outside the one true church and 3. Salvation is by works or works play a part of your salvation ("Christian") groups that teach the 3 fold doctrine of Nero-errorism include:Mormons,Jehovah's Witnesses,7th Day Adventist,Church of Christ(the Campblites)Roman Catholic.some Baptist groups(ever heard of Westboro "Baptist" Church?,as well as a host of other groups and this in only in the "Christian" circle

      May 21, 2013 at 6:15 pm |
    • joe

      Secular humanist guidance teachers? What is a secular humanist? Is it just someone who disagrees with the assumption that there are sky faries controlling our destinies and instead considers physical reality?

      Do you listen to the "secular humanist" weather forecast or do you go for the one that tallies prayers for rain vs prayers for sun?

      May 22, 2013 at 12:13 am |
  4. Phil

    So this is what happens when someone not deeply acquainted with the study of religion writes an article about religion.

    Oh, and CNN should really monitor this page ... got some trolls on here posting video clips.

    May 20, 2013 at 1:30 am |
    • LinCA

      @Phil

      You said, "So this is what happens when someone not deeply acquainted with the study of religion writes an article about religion."
      You don't need to be "deeply acquainted" to see the evil side of religion. Some of us experience it every day.

      May 20, 2013 at 1:36 am |
  5. Doug Wright

    wow, ?? yes, yes...yes and YES: Zionism/Christian zionism is gone critical.!!1

    May 19, 2013 at 9:16 pm |
  6. Kerry Campbell

    1. I know the truth, and you don’t.

    Is there not a problem here? Is this article not saying that they know the truth about extremist religion? BUT according to their own terms they label anyone claiming to know the truth is in danger of extremism. So should I ignore this article because it claims to "know the truth" about religious extremism?

    May 19, 2013 at 8:51 pm |
    • WhyNot

      This article definitely has an ax to grind & is not particularly well written. I would take it with a grain of salt.
      Religions all have a core set of values that the group as a whole " knows" are true.
      When these are positive values they enhance life to promote good within & without the church.An example would be charity & caring for the poor like Christian Charity Clinics.
      When the values being expressed are negative they promote strife & hatred, An example of that would be the Westboro Baptist pickets.

      Positive values to look for are......
      Developing mercy, love, patience, peace, kindness, faithfulness, endurance, goodness, generosity, self control, & joy.

      These all foster the development of the self towards being a better person who acts in a way that brings good to everyone around them as well as society.

      Negative values to avoid are .......
      Advocate forcing your core values upon others, condemnation of all other groups, extreme control of other people within the group or outside it, total severing of family ties or society connections, extreme isolationism, requires totally casting out & severing familial ties by shunning of blood relatives, hatred based upon what group a person belongs to, raising violence to a cult status, promotion of hatred for temporal or political gain, advocation of violence to spread an ideology, purification by violence, & segregation of groups for nationality, religion, color, or gender.

      These types of teachings warp & twist the spirit. Turning ordinary people into someone like Tamerlan who could place a bomb behind a child's family & smile as they condemned them to death.

      May 20, 2013 at 11:29 am |
  7. snappie

    Observer

    Hotdogs,

    I'm not sure that your comment is directed to me, but I've never said the Bible is a "fairytale". It is a collection of many good morals that also contains errors, contradictions, hypocrisy and nonsense.

    many. go ahead

    May 19, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
  8. Grant

    Sad of you CNN to illustrate a picture of Waco when, it was FBI agents that actually started the fire, killing many innocents inside and their M.O. hasn't changed a bit.

    May 19, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • snappie

      cnn s u c k s

      May 19, 2013 at 8:19 pm |
  9. Science

    For all creationists ................ID believers...........bible thumbers.....

    Question...............if you SH-IT can the red horn-y devil...................what happens to your fairy in the sky ?

    May 19, 2013 at 7:45 am |
    • Grant

      I'd love to try & answer your question, but, it made absolutely no sense.

      May 19, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
    • Science

      You know creationists...........ID believers...............The Bone !..............E =mc2

      Messed-Up Bible Stories – 2 – Adam and Eve

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NRGnPIlclps&w=640&h=360]

      How did feathers evolve? – Carl Zimmer

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPLgfGX1I5Y&w=640&h=360]

      Dinosaur Egg Study Supports Evolutionary Link Between Birds and Dinosaurs: How Troodon Likely Hatched Its Young

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130418104324.htm

      Star Dust we are
      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aWdU_px9ApE&w=640&h=360]

      Holy Hallucinations 35
      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XTCRdC8Dlo&w=640&h=360]

      Peace

      NO FART in the SKY

      May 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  10. behappyandfree

    People kill for political reasons, not religious ones.

    Marx, btw, complained that religion made people too passive, and willing to tolerate abuse. Hence, 'opiate of the people.'

    Atheists and believers both kill for political and economic power. The truly religious have inner peace and try to share it with those who lack it.

    May 18, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Nina

      O...K.... Clearly you, too, are a religious fanatic. Ever hear of the inquisitions? Where you got that assbackwards idea (probably your pastor) is the first clue that you aren't thinking for yourself. Absolute sheep. I feel sorry for people like you.

      May 19, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
    • Joe

      Actually, Marx likened religion to a pain killer and not anestesia. He said that when people are in pain they flock to religion in an attempt to ease their suffering. So people sought the "opium" of religion in an attempt to not feel pain rather than to not feel anything.

      May 19, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • sam stone

      If they truly had inner peace, they would not need to convince others of the correctness of it

      May 20, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Divdar

      The inquisition was done for political purposes under the disguise of religion. It was a means to steal land and holdings. The Spanish king used it against his enemies.

      By all accounts, the 20th century was one of the bloodiest centuries in human history. Two major world wars, which had nothing at all to do with religion, the Jewish Holocaust, and the Communist Revolutions in Russia, China, Southeast Asia and Cuba, have accounted for anywhere between 50-70 million deaths (some estimate upwards to 100 million). The one thing these conflicts and genocides have in common is that fact that they were ideological, not religious, in nature.

      May 21, 2013 at 8:24 pm |
  11. Science

    http://www.ted.com/playlists................might help Chad and the gang if you view them ALL........you know ?

    May 18, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
  12. ColKlink

    The real threat from Islam comes not from the terrorists rather immigration & demographics that transform nations and cause wars. Christians have no history of this while Islam have numerous ongoing wars & revolutions.

    May 18, 2013 at 9:16 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      Christianities history is full of violence including terrorism. Study history a bit better.

      May 18, 2013 at 9:22 am |
    • HotAirAce

      I think the native populations of the Amercas, Australia and most of Africa would disagree about the benigness of the dead jew zombie vampire cannibal cult aka christianity.

      May 18, 2013 at 9:41 am |
    • erik

      Christians don't have a history of violence? -- The US has been in constant war for two centuries.

      May 19, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • snappie

      HotAirAce

      I think the native populations of the Amercas, Australia and most of Africa would disagree about the benigness of the dead jew zombie vampire cannibal cult aka christianity.

      i'm dying here dodo

      May 19, 2013 at 8:17 pm |
    • snappie

      erik

      Christians don't have a history of violence? - The US has been in constant war for two centuries.

      lol

      May 19, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
  13. ColKlink

    Another marxist irreligion rant. Who has killed more since 1775? The world revolution.

    1) marxist claim science has truth and bans all religion.

    2) marxist leaders include everyone from Voltaire to Marx to Freemason George Washington to Albert Pike who has his own statue in DC.

    3) the marxist often claim the world population is heading for extinction while advocating depopulation!

    4) As Marx said "let the ruling class tremble at the marxist revolution!"

    Marxism is just a pagan religion.

    May 18, 2013 at 9:08 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      pagan is a term that simply means someone who is not jewish, christian or muslim.

      Pagan is not a derogatory term. Christianity, Islam etc have been killing for centuries, and it continues daily.
      The holocaust happened because of christian ideals.

      May 18, 2013 at 9:15 am |
    • Jeff

      How could George Washington be a Marxist? The Revolutionary War began in 1776, and Marx was writing in the mid 19th Century. Your timeline seems to be off by a few years, but it's understandable being a product of the public educational system. I understand you poor, stupid, ignorant neanderthal.

      May 19, 2013 at 5:16 am |
  14. DWN

    If you want to investigate what happened at Waco, the beliefs of the Davidians were a little weird, but the true evil came from the lunatics in the federal government who used assault weapons, tanks, flash grenade and who knows what else against them. Check the religious beliefs of those in the government who decided to incinerate innocent children, women, and men. That's where the truly dangerous religionists resided in that case.

    May 18, 2013 at 9:08 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      The true evil came from David Koresh refusing to abide by OUR laws. The government mishandled the situation, and have admitted it, but David Koresh could have ended the situation at any time simply by surrendering. He could have had his day in court. It was his choice to escalate the situation, forcing the government to act.

      May 18, 2013 at 9:28 am |
    • snappie

      koresh was a devout believer.

      bill clinton was a consecrated christian

      May 19, 2013 at 8:25 pm |
  15. light

    I will ask and you will answer untill we reach the first element,and the question will be the same.......who created the first element?

    May 18, 2013 at 7:52 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      Why do you think there was a who?
      All hydrogen was created at the time of the big bang. The cause of the big bang is still under investigation. The hydrogen, through the attraction of one mass for another, formed suns. When a star dies, it goes through many stages, in it's later stages, the elements get changed from one element to larger and heavier elements, creating the elements we now can see and study.

      Stop asking such ignorant questions and take some science classes.( and yes, the question was ignorant as you presumed there was a who.)

      May 18, 2013 at 7:59 am |
    • Science

      light.................All there !

      https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/02/09/my-take-a-word-to-christians-be-nice/comment-page-44/?
      replytocom=2266232#respond

      https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/05/when-christians-become-a-hated-minority/

      May 18, 2013 at 8:04 am |
    • Science

      light................maybe Austin ?

      https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/16/end-times-for-doomsday-linked-radio-network/#comments

      May 18, 2013 at 8:16 am |
    • light

      Why do you think there was no who?
      Numbers are starting with 1,alphapit starting with A.
      If i asked you what is before number 2 dont answer me why you think there is something before number 2.
      These are the logics of things.
      Still you can not face yourself with the answer because you dont want to answer.
      Again i will ask the question,the first mass of the big bang from where it came?
      That mass must be a space contains it,from where that space came ?and what was beyond that space?
      What about the time?how they calculated it where was no sun or day or night?
      Did you think about these all or just keep the others to lead your mind?

      May 18, 2013 at 4:05 pm |
    • todaypost

      On the same line of logic, who created god?

      May 19, 2013 at 10:41 am |
    • light

      What is the letter before the letter "A"?

      What is the number before the number "1"?

      It is like if you ask who is the presedent of the presdent or who is the king of the king.

      Actually this is not a question,because god is the creator.

      If you are asking who created god ,it means that you believe in god.Even you dont know how to ask?

      Still my main question without an answer and no one of you all will answer,from where came the first element?

      From where came the first element?

      From where came the first element?

      May 19, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
    • Science

      Hey faith......chadie............the peach........... did you learn or hear from that Discovery show about the LAND BRIDGE ?

      How many years ago did we cross into North America ?

      Also is place maybe for International RR ?

      May 21, 2013 at 6:35 am | Report abuse | Reply

      Science

      Kepler or not, we'll find life in space

      http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/20/opinion/urry-kepler-malfunction/index.html?hpt=op_t1

      Evolving Planets Get a Bumpy Ride

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120305131756.htm

      Where Does All Earth's Gold Come From? Precious Metals the Result of Meteorite Bombardment, Rock Analysis Finds

      Not by the horn-y red thingy CHAD !

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110907132044.htm

      Peace

      May 21, 2013 at 6:06 am | Report abuse | Reply

      May 21, 2013 at 6:42 am |
  16. Geoff Cynic

    Let us return to square one. "evil" is associated with power, be it religious power or secular power. If this world is to survive into the coming age, we will need as many people as possible to drop all of these divisive doctrines. What we need on this planet, right now, are honest, caring and whole human beings who are motivated not by potential favours and rewards from sadistic and/or ethnocentric deities in the sky, but by innate decency and integrity. Only in this way can we all live in peace rather than fear, which is the weapon wielded by religion to convert the "faithful."

    May 18, 2013 at 6:54 am |
  17. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    May 18, 2013 at 6:25 am |
  18. light

    For that H.B and all athiests read this:

    Choice (1) there is a God for our univrse.......what is the result?

    1-More safe,more protection,organized life by instructions,live in peace with the others,do not scare from death... totally peace of mind.

    2-Eternity in the after life with no pain,no discomfort just bliss.

    Choice (2) there is no God.......what is the result?

    1-in the after life..........0 result.

    2-In this life why we have to accept to be poor? it is just one life and we want to take it,so by all means we will get what we want even if to steal or kill the others.
    Also the others will do the same with us.

    3-Why we have to sleep? we will waste a great part of our one limitted life, but we want to enjoy it before leaving.

    4-What about those sick people?some of them can not even move.....they lost here and after death?

    5-What about Criminals who escaped with thier crimes? or what about thier victims?

    By this way living in jungles is more better.

    And many other examples we can list them all but no time or space for that.

    Thousands and thousands of proofs and arguments we can tell about our God existence but the athiests dont have even one evidence about their faith,all what they can do is to deny.

    Some of the athiest are looking for the truth,and some others are just here to shake the others faith.

    May 18, 2013 at 5:57 am |
    • Science

      Monkey Math: Baboons Show Brain's Ability to Understand Numbers E = mc2 carbon – 14 ( U-Pb)

      NUMBERS DO NOT LIE !

      May 3, 2013 — Opposing thumbs, expressive faces, complex social systems: it's hard to miss the similarities between apes and humans. Now a new study with a troop of zoo baboons and lots of peanuts shows that a less obvious trait – the ability to understand numbers – also is shared by humans and their primate cousins.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130503132719.htm

      May 18, 2013 at 6:06 am |
  19. faith

    i think little fatty sambo urging xtards to commit violent suicide is wonderful. i particularly enjoy the way not one god-hating Nazi fascist has ever posted any criticism of their beloved Nazi for her disgusting posts and sick mind.

    i also find myself warmly amused when dodo plays the role of ms integrity and chastens reborn xtards for being mean. that is beyond hilarious.

    May 18, 2013 at 2:55 am |
    • Science

      Science

      In Santa we trust

      You know faith...............Christians be Nice.............does se-x education work for you faith ?

      With the RCC goes the oldest of old the damn bedVROOOOOOOM..............they need to stay the FVCK OUT OF IT !

      You know with is partner...............the red thing

      May 16, 2013 at 6:38 am | Report abuse | Reply

      May 18, 2013 at 6:01 am |
    • sam stone

      i love it when pompous christards bloviate on how they are going to spend eternity in heaven, but not one of them wants to go there now.

      May 20, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
    • sam stone

      faith: that suggestion applies to you.

      come on, troll, put your money where your mouth is

      you could be on your knees, servicing jeebus as soon as the click of a trigger

      May 20, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
  20. Rev Dr Felix Nwosu

    This is history,evil is evil. killing as a form of religion is capital evil my brother.you didn't create anyone all your fellowers were converted men and women they did not believe before they were converted by your faith why didn't you killed them then?you wouldn't have had fellowers.the power of convertion is your ability of convincing them not condemning or killing. that's evil and ungodly.the devil as come to kill and to steal and to destroy the book of john10vs10.come and worship with us at christfoundation sabbath mission at no 10 omotayo banwo street ori oke ogudu lagos Nigeria. shalom and God bless.

    May 18, 2013 at 2:40 am |
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About this blog

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