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Riding the 'white train' in search of a miracle
The journey gives disabled pilgrims a rare opportunity to take a religious vacation.
August 14th, 2013
09:12 AM ET

Riding the 'white train' in search of a miracle

Photographers Jean-Marc Caimi and Valentina Piccinni rode with 600 pilgrims and volunteers as they took the “white train” from Reggio Calabria in southern Italy to the French town of Lourdes. Disabled believers make the journey annually in hopes of a miracle.

Read the story and see their images at CNN Photos

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Faith & Health • Health care • Italy

soundoff (944 Responses)
  1. A famous man once said

    "...Disabled believers"

    Believers know that you need a GO in front of that first word.

    and how smart is that man!

    August 15, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Alias

      Not really all that smart.

      August 15, 2013 at 9:38 am |
    • Brandon

      I didn't get it!? What did he actually say?

      August 15, 2013 at 10:28 am |
  2. laststonecarver

    The story of Lourdes is about Compa-ssion – you know, like caring about those of less beneficial circ-umstances than yourself –
    But who needs Compa-ssion right? – I've got mine, skrew everybody else –
    Or...
    Some folks believe that if they go to a certain location, that their god will smile on them – even at a church or temple or mosque – much less a 'Holy Place', like Lourdes –
    We all know what it means, when one performs the same action repeti-tively, expecting a different result –
    But....
    The fact is that there are a lot of broken people, a lot of lot of broken people, who are praying, wishing, waiting, hoping that somehow, someway, someone will help them, even it it takes a god – or especially if it takes a god –
    Because their family and friends and doctors can't change it – can't make it acceptible in their thought deliberations –
    So maybe, just maybe, using some Lourdes holy water can make the pain go away –
    Or maybe Fatima's, or Mecca's, or Ghanges' ...

    Do you have compa-ssion for them?
    Can they come to your house?
    Why do you even have to acknowledge that they exist?
    Does it matter if the broken people are atheist or of a religion?
    Do You care?

    August 15, 2013 at 8:42 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Yes I care,

      I care people spread supersti.tous BS that does actual harm.

      Through fraud, faith healers, religious scams.

      Parents that kill their kids through neglect because they think prayer heals over medicine.

      Beliefs don't exist in a vacuum, quit acting like they do.

      August 15, 2013 at 10:50 am |
      • laststonecarver

        @Blessed,
        – Beliefs don't exist in a vacuum, quit acting like they do.. –
        Unsure of the logic portended about the beliefs statement, I said it to myself over and over –
        I thought of the device that removes debris/detritus on my carpets – but I don't remember emptying any beliefs – so I guess you're right – thanx, data stored for future reference –
        As for the acting, Life is a stage, and we are all but actors – I will continue to participate –
        Now on to the meat of your belief about Religion –
        Yup religion is a big performance, with all the shills and thrills, and actors –
        You get to play the bad guy, and so you are part of that performance – me too –
        But you get to play the good guy too, saving the sheeple from the wolf in sheeeples' clothing, as it were –
        I have actually seen, and touched, a bottle of the Lourdes holy water –
        We are so, so influenced by the religious – did they blow the yellow voodoo powder into your face... no wait that was Serpant and the Rainbow, and it was just a movie.... –
        Anyway... religion is easier to deal with, if you adlib your lines, and occassionally utilize asides –
        Break a leg –

        August 15, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          -Unsure of the logic portended about the beliefs statement, I said it to myself over and over –
          I thought of the device that removes debris/detritus on my carpets – but I don't remember –

          Yeah my reference was to a vacuum cleaner....apparently you have had plenty of religious training to be able to conflate definitions so easily and yet still remain a pretentious dou.che canoe.

          As to the rest of your post...lots of words for so little substance.

          August 15, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
        • laststonecarver

          @Blessed Cheesemaker,
          – pretentious dou.che canoe. – a phrase which you made up or copied, because it somehow sounds demeaning –
          You display your mind (yourself) through trite statements, and verbal assault –
          What have you ever done to stop religious fraud and supersti-tion? –
          Or how have you begun to stop parents from not providing medical care, due to their religious belief? –
          Time to pull up your big boy panties – and do something that really matters, like perceiving beyond yourself –
          So you deem yourself an atheist – hah – what now – how will you process this information –
          Clue: you opened your head for me to walk in –

          August 16, 2013 at 5:47 am |
  3. Bootyfunk

    why won't god heal amputees? he supposedly heals the blind and lame, he never heals amputees. perhaps it's because you can fake being blind or lame, but can't fake missing an arm or eyes?

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbgxUavMq4o&w=640&h=360]

    August 15, 2013 at 1:15 am |
    • HotAirAce

      The sound you are hearing is the rapid flipping of pages and the weeping and gnashing of teeth as mentally ill, delusional believers rip through their Babbles, unable to find an answer to this most simple of questions. . .

      But have no fear – they will eventually come up with "god (some unproven supernatural being not seen or heard from in several thousand years) works in mysterious ways, beyond the comprehension of mere men."

      August 15, 2013 at 2:16 am |
      • Athy

        One of the best platitudes I've heard was when some TV reporter interviewed a woman in the deep south after a tornado ripped her town apart. "Well, god has his ways; we don't always see the big picture." Pathetic. But it probably makes her life easier to live, so how can one argue.

        August 15, 2013 at 2:57 am |
        • Mark from Middle River

          Not sure. Her statement could be also viewed as being open to doubt or reaffirmation of Faith.

          August 15, 2013 at 3:08 am |
    • Sara

      In most cases I think it's less about faking than about how much the placebo effect can do or whether an illness is largely psychogenic.

      August 15, 2013 at 7:12 am |
    • Lawrence

      Some use this question in an attempt to "disprove" the existence of God. If God is all-powerful and if Jesus promised to do anything we ask (or so the reasoning goes), then why won’t God ever heal amputees when we pray for them? The fact that an amputee stays an amputee is "proof" to some that God does not exist, that prayer is useless, that so-called healings are coincidence, and that religion is a myth. This argument is usually presented in a thoughtful, well-reasoned way, with a liberal sprinkling of Scripture to make it seem all the more legitimate. However, it is an argument based on a wrong view of God and a misrepresentation of Scripture. The line of reasoning employed in the "why won’t God heal amputees" argument makes at least seven false assumptions:
      Assumption 1: God has never healed an amputee
      Assumption 2: God’s goodness and love require Him to heal everyone
      Assumption 3: God still performs miracles today just as He did in the past
      Assumption 4: God is bound to say "yes" to any prayer offered in faith
      Assumption 5: God’s future healing (at the resurrection) cannot compensate for earthly suffering
      Assumption 6: God’s plan is subject to man’s approval
      Assumption 7: God does not exist

      August 15, 2013 at 8:55 am |
      • Sara

        Lawrence, no one has, to the best of my knowledge, ever claimed that the Christian god is said to do anything his followers ask. That is a gross misrepresentation of the position for your own convenience. The line of reasoning runs much more like this:

        The Christian god is said to perform miracles
        The Catholic church and various other religious insti tutions and popular culture have recognized many medical miracles
        None of these "docu mented miracles" involve regrowth of missing limbs
        This is statistically improbable if illnesses of a similar magnitude are cured in proportion to their occurrence
        -----------
        Conclusion: The body of alleged miracles does not provide complelling evidence of the Christian god's existence

        August 15, 2013 at 9:04 am |
        • Lawrence

          Your assumption is that God HAS NOT ever healed an amputee. Do you know for a fact that He has never healed an amputee? My guess is that you want to see it happen in a laboratory for yourself. You want God to be a trained performer for you. But I posit that even IF God did perform for you, you would still not believe.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:17 am |
        • Sara

          Lawrence, as stated, my assumption is that

          'None of these "docu mented miracles" involve regrowth of missing limbs'

          August 15, 2013 at 9:20 am |
        • Lawrence

          Well, you're using the Catholic Church as a basis for claiming miracles, and the Catholic Church isn't a true, Christ honoring faith. Then again, many so-called "faith healers" exists within protestant denominations in order to earn money from weak minded individuals. When Christ heals – I mean, truely heals – you rarely hear about those. Why? Because the call to Christ SHOULD NEVER be because you think you will receive a healing. The gift of healing – although I won't rule it out for today – was given for a certain time and to certain people as a miracle of authentication to non-believers that what they were saying was from God. Since we have Scripture today, we no longer NEED the healing gifts – since we have the Scripture to authenticate the message of a supposed "man of God."

          August 15, 2013 at 9:29 am |
        • Sara

          The problem for your argument, Lawrence, is that if you can't use things you've heard about you have no evidence at all. If you can use things you've heard about, the evidence is fishy due to its omission of any cure that might be verifiable.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:36 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          -Your assumption is that God HAS NOT ever healed an amputee. Do you know for a fact that He has never healed an amputee?-

          Lawrence,

          Claiming it is reasonable to believe X because X has never been proven untrue is faulty logic. If it was rational to do so one could argue in believing absolutely anything.....there is a word we use for people like that, 'gullible'.

          August 15, 2013 at 11:39 am |
      • EnjaySea

        Your list of assumptions are nothing more than a list of standard justifications to give your notion of god an "out". I am not convinced that a god exists. So I don't make any assumptions about what this non-existent deity supposedly does or doesn't do, thinks or doesn't think, when it's required to answer prayer, or anything else that first presumes that he exists.

        I don't presume that a god exists, so your last assumption is the only one I make.

        August 15, 2013 at 11:57 am |
    • Lawrence

      Incidentally... The passage the narrator uses, Matthew 21:22 is taken WAY out of context... I always say, never read JUST ONE Bible verse, but read before and after it to take it into consideration. Jesus said what He did with the assumtion that the prayer is in accordance with the WILL OF GOD, not JUST the will of the believer, then God will grant the request. (See Matthew 17:20, and also compare to Mark 9:24) God will always answer the request that starts in heaven. We can't expect God to answer a prayer that is against His will.
      Seriously, come up with something better. That's an amateur reading scripture in that video if he's making those kinds of assumptions.

      August 15, 2013 at 9:12 am |
      • Lawrence

        Just continuing a little more here... True faith, by Christ's definition, always involves surrender to the will of God. What He was teaching in Matthew 17:20 is that both the source and the object of faith is always God. And nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37) When He says that "nothing is impossible," the qualifying thought MUST be that what we ask for must be in "according to His will." 1 John 5:14.
        Just take the Bible in context, don't "proof text" anything, and you'll see.

        August 15, 2013 at 9:25 am |
        • Sara

          Sure, and fixing pain and neurologic problems is "according to his will" but doing anything visible and recordable is not. Ahhhh...God's mysterious ways...

          August 15, 2013 at 9:31 am |
        • Lawrence

          Why are you so caught up on seeing a miracle in order to believe? You probably wouldn't believe even if you did see one. Lets flip this around... In order to NOT believe in God, you've got to assume that something came from nothing (origins of the universe), you've got to assume that life can come from non-life (even though this has been disproven for hundreds of years), and you've got to assume that mutations can add information to the genetic code (even though Christopher Hitchens could never come up with a single example of this occuring.)

          August 15, 2013 at 9:36 am |
        • Sara

          "You probably wouldn't believe even if you did see one."

          You guys love to say this without any evidence for it whatsoever. Of course I would believe in a miracle if I had good evidence. I think the world would be super cool with miracles and magic. I just haven't seen any. I have no idea whether or not there are gods, but I'm pretty sure the more common Abrahamic versions are internally inconsistent and therefore improbable.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:39 am |
        • Ben

          Nice argument from ignorance there, Lawrence. Love how you slid that in.

          Now, why should we believe your own far-fetched god story, over all the thousands of others that man has made up? Furthermore, your god can't reasonably expect us to believe without clear, testable modern evidence. So far, not seeing any of that. Popping a "son" up once in 2000 years doesn't cut it, for me anyway.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:41 am |
        • Lawrence

          OK, you said you would believe if you saw a miracle. Go out an pluck a blade of grass. Where did it come from? Science cannot explain origins – in order to believe in science, you've got to believe that something (blade of grass, the universe) came from nothing. The universe is not eternal – there is no model for the eternality of the universe that works, and always remember, mathematical formulae do not make reality. The math has to jive with observable reality, and observable reality is that the universe is winding down. If something is winding down, it had to have a beginning. And if it had a beginning, then it must have been caused by a being who is self-existant. Not self-created, but self existent. Scientists sometimes say that the universe is self-existent, that it came from nothing, but in order to be self-existent, it would have had to exist before it existed in order to create itself... That's a logical fallacy. BUT, a self-existent God who created a finite universe doesn't contradict logic, and makes sense.
          There's your miracle. A blade of grass.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:45 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Lawrence
          You keep up with that lame something from nothing argument. You clearly do not understand the theories that are being pursued. You seem to think that there was nothing before the big bang. No one is saying that. One mans nothing is another mans interdimensional something, also for all you know, something did come from nothing, or matter has always existed....simply we do not know.

          SO stop using that trite something from nothing argument, it is false and that is not what people believe.
          Besides, having no evidence to support the god hypothesis, belieiving any god was involved makes far less sense.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:46 am |
        • Lawrence

          Typo... "Scientists sometimes say that the universe is SELF-CREATED..." Is how that should have read. Sorry.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:47 am |
        • Sara

          "Science cannot explain origins – in order to believe in science, you've got to believe that something (blade of grass, the universe) came from nothing. "

          No, you don't. There are an abundance of theories about the origin of what is in our universe and none of us have any idea which is true. Although our time dimension started at the "bang" for instance, much of the math points to an additional time dimension which, in the terms of that dimension, existed "before" the bang. Again you are conveniently rewriting reality to suit your own intellectual need to think you have the one and only answer.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:49 am |
        • Lawrence

          Richard: then would you please tell me how life can come from non-life? I can squash a mosquito on my arm, and there in that pool of chemicals exists all of the elements needed for life, but dat bug ain't a comin' back. Why not? If I believe in a purely "scientific model," am I forced to say that it is at least a possibility?

          August 15, 2013 at 9:50 am |
        • Lawrence

          Sara: Just because someone has a math problem that "works" doesn't make it real. Didn't you know that Robert J. Smith, a mathematics professor at the University of Ottawa has created mathematical modesl for zombies??? The math MUST jive with observable reality, otherwise its just fiction.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:55 am |
        • Sara

          Lawrence, please note my reference to an abundance of theories. We don't have any idea yet at this point which, if any, of the working theories work with the data we will collect in the future. Zombies have much bigger problems and additionally are something which we actually can conduct experiments on. The issue is that you don't know either. You have one theory among thousands, and your theory has already exposed weaknesses not only these "miracle" claims, but depending on the version of Christianity on numerous other historical, biological, archaeological, psychological and cosmological fronts.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:05 am |
        • Ben

          Lawrence, you keep on posting what is essentially an Argument from Ignorance as your primary argument for the existence of your god. It's a basic logical error that you are making, and your argument fails as a result. You owe it to yourself to google it.

          "We don't know" is the honest and appropriate answer. Not "god did it". Although as Sara has already said, we have some reasonable postulates, none of which are compatible with the Christian god myth.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:06 am |
        • Lawrence

          Sara: But you just made my point... Although it is important to have a philosophy on origins it is not scientific. Science is observation, testing, experimentation, and the origins of the universe is neither observable, testable, or repeatable through experimentation. So while both of our views may differ on origins – here's the important part – THEY MUST BOTH BE ACCEPTED BY FAITH! 🙂

          August 15, 2013 at 10:09 am |
        • Sara

          Lawrence, I know you think you're making some brilliant point That's enlightening us, but trust me, that's not the case. Everyone with a few brain cells to run together knows you have to accept your premises without proof, and if you want to call that faith, go ahead. The fact is that Christians accept almost every major scientific premise non-Christians do, so we are all sharing the same faith in the existence of other beings, the continuation of time, the consistency of logic etc. Christians just add extra premises, which unfortunately often also conflict with the premises they hold regarding science and logic. The point is that some theories are better explanations than others; that's the best you can ever say. The Christian god is simple a very poor theory. Not all god theories, btw, are poor, but this one is when viewed objectively. I am open to hearing good god theories; you just aren't providing one.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:17 am |
        • John The Nth

          Lawrence, like Ben said, google "Argument from Ignorance".
          Just...do...it
          Now... please.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:23 am |
        • Lawrence

          Sara: I do apologize if it seemed through my writing as though my temper was flaring, please understand it wasn't. Sometimes I type in all caps just to emphasize, that's all. So with all sincerity, let me just plainly ask you, what proof of God's existence would you most like to see in your life. Many people have spoke very passionately about healing amputees, but I'm afraid miraculous healing was only a common gift in the past. Many claim it today as proof of God's existence, but sadly, most of the time it is only proof of some people's wish fulfillment. God offers many proofs of His existence in the world today, but He's not a genie either. If someone is to come to a belief in God, it is because they have been broken over their own sinfulness. We inherantly know that it's wrong to lie, it's wrong to steal, its wrong to commit murder, its wrong to hate... But we've all done these things – and most of the time we've done them willingly. And until we can admit that we have done these things, and that we are not good people by nature, but we are wicked people by nature – all of us, and I'm first in line on that – then God won't reveal Himself to you. God is not going to show Himself to someone who just wants signs or miracles. Although the argument from experience is a weak one, truely the biggest miracle that God works today is that of a changed life. Other religions can work on the outside of a man, but Christianity works from the inside out by dealing with man's nature. We're not good, we're wicked, but we've been forgiven by a God who is good.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:28 am |
        • Lawrence

          John: I'm well aware of Mr. Russell's arguments. But the argument could well be applied to both camps here. Scientists believe there is no God because they feel that their science has not been proven wrong.(even though the science is constantly changing) Christians believe there is a God because there is nothing to prove there is no God. Does that mean then that we are at a stand still? Or do we reason together to approach a better understanding of the other's position?

          August 15, 2013 at 10:33 am |
        • Brother Maynard

          Lawerence sez:
          "True faith, by Christ's definition, always involves surrender to the will of God"
          So let me get this straight.
          God gave man free will exclusivley to forfeit it ?
          He gave us free will but wants us to do his?

          God: "Hello man ... I created you ... and because I love you I'll give you free will "
          Man: " Thanks god, so I with this free will I can make my own choices "
          God: "NO I want you to do MY will"
          Man: " Uh ... ok ... so I cannot choose to do what I want "
          God: "Of course you can ... it's just that if you do what you want I'll smite you"
          Man: "So doing MY will I get the cra.p kicked out of me, or I can forfeit it and do what you want"
          God: "Exactly ... BTW 'I love you' "

          August 15, 2013 at 10:38 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Lawrence
          Simple answer. We do not know. There is something different between the chemicals and energy that is what I am comprised of and the sentient being that I am, but to leap to any conclusion is illogical. To say that it is a god, well, what definition of god are you going to use, since men create gods, the definition is a moving target.

          Until we can determine what life is, all we can say for now with any truth is we do not know.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:38 am |
        • John The Nth

          Lawrence, Argument from Ignorance is a basic logic issue that has been known for centuries. It's not purely a Bertrand Russell ref., and your argument truly is broken.

          Now, use that google on those internets. We think you can. Come on, summon your courage up...

          The honest answer is exactly what Ben said, "we don't know". Anything else is pretty much cowardice and/or dishonesty.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:43 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          lawrence

          You said "Scientists believe there is no God because they feel that their science has not been proven wrong.(even though the science is constantly changing) Christians believe there is a God because there is nothing to prove there is no God."

          False. Scientists believe there is no evidence of god. What they believe is irrelevant.
          Christians believe in a god, because they have been told to, that is what they have been taught, and they do not consider the myriad of other philosophies that men study, To say they believe because there is no evidence that there is no god, is illogical, since there is no evidence of any gods either. You make all christians sound as confused as you are.

          August 15, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        • Sara

          Lawrence, I think you need tome exposure to people who actually engage in the sciences and to non-Christians since you seem a bit confused about what people actually believe. Aside from reading more widely you might want to enroll in a few real university courses in the philosophy of science, anthropology, astronomy, physics and psychology...and not at some backwoods Christian college, but somewhe you'll be surrounded by live, thinking people who are from outside your world and with whom you can debate these topics.

          August 15, 2013 at 11:21 am |
        • Lawrence

          Sara: Now who is assuming? You know nothing about me, where I went to college, how I was brought up, if my knowledge of God is based on what I have been told, or what I have found out for myself. You don't know what parts of the world I have spent time in, what manner of people that I have come into contact with. You don't know what I know about science and mathematics,what books I have read or with what well known scientists I have personally interviewed
          And I do wish that people would stop saying "people believe in God becasue they were told to." Well, maybe the person who said that was told to, and that would explain a lot about their hostility. The point is, science has no way of explaining the supernatural, and by that I mean anything outside of what we now perceive as natural occurance – the origins of the universe is supernatural because scientists will tell you that origins is where the natural laws of physics breaks down. So where do you turn for answers?
          What do you claim is ultimate truth? Where does it come from? And how does that source claim authority to dictate truth?

          August 15, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Sara

          Lawrence, You have clearly demonstrated here that you have incorrect beliefs about both the beliefs and logic of non-Christians and scientists. If you have these beliefs despite the kinds of wducation and exposure I recommend, then you have some sort of intellectual deficit. I was giving the benefit of the doubt in assuming you can fix the problem. I hope that is the case.

          August 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
        • Wayne's Universe

          Lawrence, as others have noted to you repeatedly, the honest, brave answer is "we don't know". "goddidit" is merely a lazy copout, quite apart from being logically flawed.

          August 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
    • Sam Yaza

      why dose god let amputees be born? he doesn't, because amputees are not born, yes deformities can happen, but i person is not born with his limb amputated.

      but never the less the Christians god is an asshole that why.

      pagan gods say this instead,.. "fix your own damn problem I'm busy giving you asshats Light" -Apollo

      August 15, 2013 at 7:49 pm |
  4. Apple Bush

    Quit following me I got no more to give you people I got no more to give so no coffee... I'm done. Done.
    But I wasn’t done. I was only pouring foundation. That is when it happened. Yeah I guess it is like a cell. It has dark spots, corners. There is a lighted area but the bulb flickers on and off more than it used too. Strange to be a rabid animal in a cage you built yourself and when they try to save you….bite them…then ask them to come back.
    to eat a steak, politely rest your butter knife through a perfectly cooked filet that melts in your mouth like warm, fresh tuna.

    August 14, 2013 at 11:39 pm |
  5. hharri

    It is not his will that any should perish

    August 14, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • tony

      pity about his tsunamis then.

      August 14, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      His rules, his will

      August 14, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
    • hharri

      But that all should enjoy eternal life through repentance.

      If the world hates you, know that it hated me first.

      The first shall be last and the last first

      August 15, 2013 at 12:28 am |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        Mairzy dotes and dozy dotes and little lamsy divey,
        A kiddly divey, too – wouldn't you?

        August 15, 2013 at 1:07 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      if there is a god, he is the worst mass murderer in all of history. he drowned every single person on the planet but one family. that means god drowned babies. read that again: BABIES. your god is guilty of infanticide.

      August 15, 2013 at 1:18 am |
      • hharri

        God never murdered anyone

        August 15, 2013 at 11:58 am |
        • Which God?

          Bald faced lie. He wiped out everthing and everyone in his big flood, except for the ark, right? This according to your holey ('cause it has so many of them in it.), book.

          August 15, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
  6. Apple Bush

    Akira if you are out there and have a few minutes.....

    August 14, 2013 at 10:45 pm |
  7. hharri

    His justice shines forth brighter than the noonday sun.

    August 14, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
    • Athy

      Do I need suntan lotion?

      August 14, 2013 at 10:45 pm |
      • hharri

        Butter

        August 14, 2013 at 11:00 pm |
        • Athy

          Butter is better? Is there a better butter?

          August 14, 2013 at 11:35 pm |
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    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.comHUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com
    HUMAN SELL OF POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA NICOLAS MADURO SPAIN KING JOSIKO NODA AND ABE.
    SELL OF NEURAL POATRONS TO ESTIMULATE AND CHANGE DE DNA CODE.
    http://www.mudpgi.blog.com

    August 14, 2013 at 10:36 pm |
  9. Apple Bush

    Sometimes I wish I would read the articles so I would know what the hell is going on, but then it's like....nah.

    August 14, 2013 at 10:36 pm |
    • Athy

      I never read them either. Just go for the throats.

      August 14, 2013 at 10:46 pm |
  10. Apple Bush

    She held her glass the bloody end sticking up so she could enjoy the stains and cocktail napkins. Ever since she could remember she saved and hid her collection of cocktail umbrellas, toothpicks, plastic swords and balsa –wood pins.

    There was something about drinking that warmed her spirits (and temperature), and the artifacts reminded her of less hellish times. Her girlfriend Hannah told her it was an obsessive compulsive disorder or hoarding. I disagreed.

    I was her.

    August 14, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
  11. Colin

    Lourdes – eat, drink and see Mary

    August 14, 2013 at 8:31 pm |
    • Reality

      And please look directly into the Sun when you do 🙂

      August 14, 2013 at 10:21 pm |
      • Colin

        That was Fátima, no?

        August 14, 2013 at 10:43 pm |
        • Reality

          Yes and Medjugorje too.

          August 15, 2013 at 6:54 am |
  12. hharri

    One glimpse of home and my tears will dry up in the presence of his magnificence. Words cannot express the joy that will be. I am sorry so many don't want to go there.

    August 14, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      If god wants us to be with him in heaven, he can have his way. He CHOOSES to allow people to go to a place of eternal torture. He CHOOSES to allow that place of eternal torture to exist. He CHOOSES not to destroy that place and offer some reasonable result other than that horror.

      God is disgusting and horrific.

      August 14, 2013 at 7:16 pm |
      • Russ

        @ Cpt. Obvious: Ariel Castro got 1000 years for what he did to those girls.
        Was that enough? he obviously can't even pay it. Could there be a value placed on what they lost?

        how much more for what we did to Christ? God made himself vulnerable FOR us, and humanity declared, "given the chance, I'll kill God!" (after all, isn't that the sentiment you're expressing even now?) is there any equation for the finite injuring the Infinite? do the math. what is infinity divided by 1?

        in minimizing the injury, you gloss over what Hell is – justice. would you do the same with any other atrocity?
        minimizing the injury also minimizes the mercy – which certainly contributes to why you have so little respect for what Jesus did.

        August 14, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          No. Hell is not justice. If a person received everything back that they did to others, that would be justice. But an infinite amount of torture is not justice. No way. No how. Your god is a disgusting sadist.

          August 14, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
        • Observer

          Russ,

          You and I didn't do ONE thing to Jesus, who was supposedly only half human being. He's supposed to be doing fine in Heaven according to all the Christians.

          August 14, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Humanity didn't kill Jesus, at best it was a few hundred Roman's and Jews. Overly dramtic much?

          August 14, 2013 at 9:33 pm |
        • Reality

          (from Professor Crossan's book, "Who is Jesus" co-authored with Richard Watts)

          "Moreover, an atonement theology that says God sacrifices his own son in place of humans who needed to be punished for their sins might make some Christians love Jesus, but it is an obscene picture of God. It is almost heavenly child abuse, and may infect our imagination at more earthly levels as well. I do not want to express my faith through a theology that pictures God demanding blood sacrifices in order to be reconciled to us."

          "Traditionally, Christians have said, 'See how Christ's passion was foretold by the prophets." Actually, it was the other way around. The Hebrew prophets did not predict the events of Jesus' last week; rather, many of those Christian stories were created to fit the ancient prophecies in order to show that Jesus, despite his execution, was still and always held in the hands of God."

          "In terms of divine consistency, I do not think that anyone, anywhere, at any time, including Jesus, brings dead people back to life."

          August 14, 2013 at 10:23 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Cpt Obvious: as I said, do the math. what is Infinity divided by 1?
          how do you pay back destroying something priceless?
          as Soren Kierkegaard said, there is "an infinite, qualitative difference between God & humanity." you're glossing over that.

          also, a sadist exults in causing suffering.
          Christ willingly suffered so we wouldn't have to suffer.
          Hell is saying "no, i choose to be my own savior."
          as CS Lewis said, "the gates of Hell are locked from the inside."

          August 15, 2013 at 10:43 am |
        • Sara

          Russ,

          1. I did nothing to Christ, so leave me out of you "we".
          2. Christ's bad weekend was nothing compared to the ten years of misery and torture those girls experienced. It is disgusting to imply it was worse.
          3. Disgusting though it was, he was an ignorant little huma doing ignorant little human things. Certainly punishment is warranted to keep us safe, deter crime and provide satisfaction for the victims. But eternity is needed for none of that.

          August 15, 2013 at 10:52 am |
        • Russ

          @ Observer:
          a) we reaffirm (if not re-enact) the crucifixion every time we sin. it's actively living without reference to God – our own metaphoric version of crucifixion. and it's clear that was the understanding from the outset in how the disciples of Jesus articulated it.

          here's an article making that very point:
          http://marshill.com/2012/03/13/how-i-murdered-jesus-christ

          b) not half human – but fully human, fully God.
          the Chalcedonian council was not making that up but affirming what the Bible says.

          he is fully human: the Word became flesh, he was born, grew in wisdom & stature, got tired, hungry & thirsty, was tempted in *every* way, was physically weak at times, died & even after rising from the dead still ate & drank. he was like us in every respect (Heb.2:17; 4:15).

          yet he is fully God: he pre-exists time, helped create existence, entered the time & space he created to live a fully human life in order to save us, and he reigns over all existence (Col.1:15-23; Php.2:5-11). the fullness of God is in him (Col.2:9). and yes, now he lives & reigns (Heb.1; Php.2; etc.).

          why does that matter?
          if he's only partly human, he only partly heals us (whatever was left out wasn't healed).
          but if he's only human, he can't save us (b/c we are broken & can't save ourselves). he does what we can't.

          August 15, 2013 at 11:29 am |
        • Honey Badger Don't Care

          Russ,

          You're quoting from a book of fiction. There is no evidence that the claims in that book are true.

          August 15, 2013 at 11:38 am |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          Does not "fully human" logical exclude someone also being "fully god"?
          Just like making a round square or creating an object so big He cannot move it, isn't a fully human god (or a fully god human) be logically inconsistent?

          August 15, 2013 at 11:50 am |
        • Russ

          @ Reality:
          a) as with so many of the Jesus Seminar advocates, Crossan falls prey to the same scholarly critique: a self-projected Jesus. if there's anything 3 rounds of the 'quest for the historical Jesus' have taught us, it's that the only Jesus we have to which we have access is the one found in the earliest sources – and despite Crossan's protestations, that's the Gospel accounts.

          b) and your last sentence is Crossan's basic admission – he precludes the possibility of the miraculous (the resurrection). that's not following the scholarship – that's a presupposition. again, he has a self-projected Jesus... and that's why he ironically concocts what is an even LESS viable solution for the inception of Christianity... that it was fabricated. as if the eyewitnesses would willingly die for a lie they made up...

          read NT Wright's "the Resurrection of the Son of God" for a rather thorough scholarly analysis of the resurrection.

          August 15, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Sara:
          1) see my response to Observer here.

          2) "Christ's bad weekend" fails to understand the claim of the Incarnation: that God came in the flesh. that the Creator of existence entered the time & space continuum that he created. it's not just that he had a "bad weekend" or even a tough 33 years. GOD came down. the Transcendent became immanent. the Infinite made himself finite... vulnerable... killable. WHY? because he knew what was in our hearts. he knew we would want to kill him. but he came anyway. WHY? because God is out to convert his enemies into family.

          it's not a story about fear & guilt and how bad it is (though it is VERY bad). no, the point is how incredibly deep & huge the love is that would traverse the gap of our hatred toward him and love us so much as to fix what was wrong with us... what we had done to ourselves (and rightly deserved to die for).

          the cross is not the whole story, but it tells us 2 key things bluntly & simultaneously:
          a) it's worse than we want to admit (i deserve that death)
          b) it's better than we ever dared hope (he loves me so much he takes my place)

          3) disgusting? yes. but what's disgusting? the mirror being held up to us is not God's disgusting love – but our disgusting hatred... and what's incredible is that he takes a picture of hatred & evil and transforms it into one of love. the cross – which should be an image of our condemnation & death – has instead become a picture of God's love, our healing & rescue.

          August 15, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Honey badger: you can call it lies, but it's not fiction in the sense you mean (myth). read 1 Cor.15:1-7; Lk.1:1-4; 1 Jn.1:1-3. what are they claiming? they saw it. they touched. they heard. Luke says he took painstaking steps to compile eyewitness accounts. it's clearly not claiming to be a work of fiction...

          and NOTE: modern, realistic fiction does not arise for another 1700 years. so, in terms of genre, think that through. there's *nothing like this* which we can label fiction for another 1700 years. it's preposterous to claim that's what it is. it clearly is intended as eyewitness testimony.

          and unlike ancient myths, which arose 100s of years after the fact, these claims are made *within the lifetime* of eyewitnesses. Paul is naming names & claiming Jesus appeared to over 500 people at once within 20 (if not 15) years of Jesus' death. point being: many (if not most) of those folks are still alive. travel & correspondence are a given in the Greco-Roman world at this point. what's he doing? he's inviting fact checking. (and remember, this is the same culture that gave us cynicism & critical thought. and yet within 250 years, that culture will be largely Christian.)

          here's a lifelong expert on myth (CS Lewis) making that point to biblical scholars:
          "I have been reading poems, romances, vision-literature, legends, myths all my life. I know what they are like. I know that not one of them is like this. Of this text there are only two possible views. Either this is reportage – though it may no doubt contain errors – pretty close up to the facts; nearly as close as Boswell. Or else, some unknown writer in the second century, without known predecessors, or successors, suddenly anticipated the whole technique of modern, novelistic, realistic narrative. If it is untrue, it must be narrative of that kind. The reader who doesn't see this has simply not learned to read."
          http://orthodox-web.tripod.com/papers/fern_seed.html

          August 15, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ME II:
          a) your question precludes the possibility that God made us in a way that was contrary to him entering into our existence. in other words "round square" assumes God's nature is ultimately completely contrary to ours. the Bible teaches otherwise (we bear his image).

          to go further with your geometric analogy, it's more like the difference between a square & a rectangle. a square certainly fulfills the definition of a rectangle, but a rectangle is not necessarily a square. one is superior to another & can be regarded as the other. but at some point, as with all analogies, it breaks down. obviously, God is transcendent (and in that regard, a square is not in an utterly transcendent caliber of existence from a rectangle) – but hopefully you see the analogy for what it is.

          b) i like your second, often-made question: can God make a rock so big he can't move it? it is asking something about the nature of God – but it is ultimately not even contrasting two different traits but rather a question singularly about omnipotence itself. is it contradictory to say someone has the power to do everything including something self-refuting?
          i) it's a logically flawed question
          ii) it's really asking about the prerogative of the omniscient agent

          to go w/ ii), God does self-limit (he chooses to define goodness, justice, etc. by who he is). he chooses not to do some things (evil, injustice, etc.). but those are limitations he puts upon himself (self-defines).

          but more direct to your point, within that framework, "can God make a rock so big he can't move it?" i'll go one further: he made a nail so hard it would pierce him. he allowed himself to become so vulnerable that he would die for us. the cross answers with a resounding YES – not as a demonstration of power, but rather as a demonstration of love.

          August 15, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          "your question ... assumes God's nature is ultimately completely contrary to ours."

          I disagree; I'm assuming that God's nature is not equivelent to, or the same as, ours.
          You said it yourself, supposedly "God is transcendent" and yet man is not. How can a single being be both transcendent and not transcendent, i.e. fully god and fully man, at the same time?
          While a square may be a rectoangle, a rectangle is not always a square, therefore not all rectangles can be fully square and fully rectangle, and if it can be then it is, by necessity, a square. So, unless God is equivelent to man, i.e. both are squares, then your analogy does not work.

          As you said "it's a logically flawed question," which is, in a way, my point. Is it not a logically flawed position to claim can both be and not be at the same time?
          – A man is not a god.
          – A god is not a man.
          -> Jesus is a man and a god. (logically inconsistent)

          I am, houwever, assuming that your supposed God is logically consistent. If He is not then I would seriously question any "reason" to beleive in a being who is not logically consistent. If for no other reason than He could both exist and not exist at the same time.

          "i'll go one further: he made a nail so hard it would pierce him."

          Cute, but you are begging-the-question that Jesus was a god, otherwise such a feat is easily accomplished.

          August 15, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ME II:
          a) you're missing the point of the analogy.

          geometry: a square CAN fit the definition of a rectangle – but a rectangle may NOT fit the definition of the square. point being: a square is NOT the same thing as a rectangle... and yet it is a perfect rectangle.

          as i said above, if you purposefully stretch an analogy beyond its intent, every analogy breaks down – but i don't think you're even letting the geometrical definitions play out *within* the analogy. you said "if it can be then it is." no, basic geometry: a rectangle that has two longer sides is still a rectangle but NOT a square.

          b) transcendence does not necessarily preclude the possibility of immanence – especially when talking about a Creator-creature distinction. whether you go with Tron or the old playwright illustration, it works either way: how would the characters within the play know the Author? only if He wrote himself into the play... something *completely* within his ability & prerogative to do.

          which goes to why i think the question is logically flawed...

          c) no, the question being logically flawed is not the same as the position itself being logically flawed.
          i) your question was posed in a self-contradictory manner.
          the question assumes omnipotence is an impossibility. it – as it is asked – actually is saying "can one be all-powerful & NOT all-powerful' at the same time?" and yet the presumption of the question is already "no", as evidenced by your later arguments. that IS the definition of begging the question.
          ii) that's why my later answer is not "cute" but a direct refutation of your assumption. you're tossing it aside as possibly creative, but missing the very heart of the Christian claim of the Incarnation. you assume at the outset that this is not a possibility – though it directly refutes your question – and that's why you fail to see that your question actually is even more dramatically & directly answered at the cross. but what you find there is not merely a *logically consistent* God, but one who uses that logic to point to something greater in his character: Love.

          d) it is also clear that you fail to understand philosophically what the notion of a monotheistic God is: the Definer. you keep wanting to *test* God by your logic, etc., which fails to understand that God does not come *under* these things but rather DEFINES them: love, justice, logic, etc.

          but now that brings us to it – b/c i fully anticipate the standard crying foul of "circular logic", and yet isn't that exactly what you are doing? after all, if the universe is nothing but random (without an Anchor for logic, physics, etc.), why would expect there to be logic? as others have argued, if religion & morality are just the product of my mental faculties (which, at root, you might claim are deceiving me for the sake of survival, etc.), then why believe ANYTHING our mental faculties tell us?

          without an anchor, even logic (your test of tests, evidently) breaks down. and why would you think your logic couldn't be flawed? but again, that draws out the central issue: to what are you appealing? what is your basis? how are you not simply assessing one religion with *your own* set of circular beliefs?

          i'd encourage you to read Nietzsche's Parable of the Madman on this – from one atheist to another. his critique is devastating, and i've found few atheists who are willing to own it.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:18 am |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          a) You are missing the point of my analogy, a round square, which was that supposedly God cannot be logically inconsistent, or to put it in (perhaps?) your terms, God "is" logic and therefore cannot be non-logic or illogical.

          In order to be "fully man" would not a being, by definition, need to be non-transcendent? And, in order to be "fully god" would not a being need to be transcendent?
          How then can/could Jesus have been both?

          Please don't quote-mine, the full quote was:
          "While a square may be a rectoangle, a rectangle is not always a square, therefore not all rectangles can be fully square and fully rectangle, and if it [a rectangle] can be [a square] then it is, by necessity, a square. "

          Basic geometry: If an object can be both a square and a rectangle then it must be, by definition, a square.

          b) ... but non-transcendence must preclude non-immanence, i.e. transcendence, correct?

          c)First, I was not actually asking those questions, but using them as a reference for my actual question.

          "Just like making a round square or creating an object so big He cannot move it, isn't a fully human god (or a fully god human) be logically inconsistent?"

          In other words,
          – God is logically consistent
          – Existing as both fully god and fully human is not logically consistent.
          -> God exists (false by contradiction)

          Now if you want to claim that one of the premises is false, then we can debate that, but I don't think the argument is fallacious.

          Second, positions held in "later arguments" do not qualify as begging-the-question, whereas your argument, "he made a nail so hard it would pierce him," does actually assume that "he" is a god, otherwise the achievement would be unremarkable.

          d) "...you fail to understand ... that God does not come *under* these things but rather DEFINES them: love, justice, logic, etc."

          I agree that I do not understand this position, true. To me, it makes no sense.

          "if the universe is nothing but random (without an Anchor for logic, physics, etc.), why would expect there to be logic?"

          Is this not an argument from ignorance? i.e. 'How do you explain x?'

          "without an anchor, even logic (your test of tests, evidently) breaks down. and why would you think your logic couldn't be flawed?"

          I've heard this before and always wondered, how is logic dependent on an anchor? Absolute right and wrong, sure, but why does logic need an anchor?

          Logic, math, and to some extent science, are simply descriptions of what we have found to be the way things work. In other words, something cannot be both A and not-A, 2 + 2 cannot equal 5, etc. They are the best methods/tools that we as humans have found to understand our universe. That is not to say that we understand everything, nor that our logic is always accurate. However, that also does not mean that we must accept anything and everything either.

          While your God may actually exist, I don't think the evidence supports that position.

          As to "The Madman", I won't claim to understand fully, but if the question is 'what do we base our lives upon, what anchor do we have?' I would answer that we have ourselves. It may not be satisfying nor stable, but it is what we have and even more so, it is the one thing that we can know that we have.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          Perhaps I missed a premise:

          – God is logically consistent
          – Existing as both fully god and fully human is not logically consistent.
          – God exists as both fully god and fully human
          -> God exists (false by contradiction)

          August 16, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
        • Really-O?

          @ME II – "God exists (false by contradiction)"

          Brace yourself for the special pleading.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • ME II

          @Really-O?,
          I think it's already been made.

          "... God does not come *under* these things but rather DEFINES them: love, justice, logic, etc."

          August 16, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ME II:
          a) it's not quote mining. you're only applying the analogy one way.
          yes, if it's a rectangle AND a square, it's necessarily a square. that's why he's fully God & fully human. BOTH.
          but again, it seems you want to apply the analogy only one way – as well as to the breaking point.

          b) why? that's where we're differing. doesn't the nature of the Infinite versus the finite draw out the issue? who defines the nature of transcendence? the Infinite. if that's 'special pleading,' it's missing the very idea of the Infinite/transcendent/etc.

          c)
          i) yes, i'm claiming your second premise is mistaken: "- Existing as both fully god and fully human is not logically consistent." this is the leap of faith. on what basis (especially as one who *does not believe* we are dealing with an Objective reality who self-defines) do you make this claim? to what are you appealing?

          ii) wait a minute – you can't have it both ways. it's immaterial that your arguments were made "later." what was in question was your PRESUPPOSITION (as in: at the outset, assumed beforehand, presumption, etc.) – which just so happened to be shown in "later" arguments. do you not agree that your critique equally holds for yourself (i.e., that you assume God *does not* exist from the outset)? it's the pot calling the kettle black – you make an equally circular, leap of faith.

          d)
          i) then that's probably the entirety of the discussion. even as an atheist, you must believe there is some ground to existence. are you a naturalist? philosophically: upon what basis do your self-understanding, etc.?

          ii) no, i'm not arguing for a God of the gaps. i'm making a philosophical appeal. if your basis is random (without logic), why would the house built upon the foundation be any different? at best, it would be self-contradictory (and exposed whenever the foundation is displayed).

          iii) it's beginning to sound like you are simply a pragmatist, but even a pragmatist must have a basis for his actions. why logic? where does it come from? what is the basis? why trust it if your understanding of its basis tells you otherwise? how do you know it is actually giving you reality? (for example, see the video below – especially the argument beginning around the 3:15 mark)

          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rK0mjVcmcIo&w=640&h=360]

          iv) as to the Madman reference, Nietzsche presses the underlying concern:
          "Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What were we doing when we unchained this earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now? Whither are we moving? Away from all suns? Are we not plunging continually? Backward, sideward, forward, in all directions? Is there still any up or down? Are we not straying, as through an infinite nothing?"

          obviously, i heartily disagree with where he goes with this (as an atheist), but i love that he's this honest. the whole scenario of the man from outside society coming in & exposing how that society thinks it has transcended its own roots without realizing how much it still is attached to those roots... he's tipping his hat to the root issue.

          you say you adhere to logic, but now that you've supposedly eradicated the foundation of logic, upon what basis will you erect a new one? you're presuming things that theism has a basis to assume, but for which there is no such basis in atheism... without asserting an EQUALLY circular point of departure.

          that was Nietzsche's whole project. how to "go under", the test of eternal recurrence, etc. he understood that if you shatter the foundation, you cannot rightly build with things that also assumed that foundation. AND if you begin with an equally circular point of departure, how are you not guilty of beginning with the very thing that led you to just destroy the previous foundation?

          read the parable again. Nietzsche is an atheist slamming other atheists for not seeing their own metaphysical presuppositions. (as he says elsewhere: "it is STILL a metaphysical faith that underlies our faith in science.") logic presumes some set of metaphysics – some CIRCULAR point of departure. which is why your critique of my faith fails to see that you have one of your own. if your angle is to get rid of circular reasoning as a basis for existence & logic, you need to hear Nietzsche's critique of your own circular point of departure as an atheist. otherwise, how are you not making the very leap of faith that you're criticizing?

          or to come right at "really-O", how are YOU not the one with the special pleading? but worse, you don't even realize you're guilty of your own critique...

          August 16, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          a) I'm expressing the direction that fails. There is, I think, a limitation inherent in being "fully man" that precludes the transcendental, as I've explained. While, in one direction, it may be within a supposed god's power to immanate(?), become flesh, in the other direction, it is not with man's power to become non-physical. I maintain that a supposed god's transcendence prevents him/her from being "fully man", because being man includes the inability to exist non-physically.

          b) special pleading, is usually considered a fallacy because it is arbitrary. If you can claim that God is transcendent, then why can't I claim, for example, that logic itself is transcendent? (not that I am)

          c) Okay, now we're talking. "on what basis ... do you make this claim?"
          non-contradiction. If you are saying that A can equal Not A (A = !A), then the universe would not be rational. Since the universe is rational, as far as we can tell, then the laws of logic do exist, or at least something very similar. Now, if this were the entire basis, then I would admit that it is circular, however, we have evidence that the laws of logic work, that A != !A, and that the universe is rational, therefore it is likely to be true.
          God on the other hand, is circular but lacks any positive evidence, and while that does not disprove a god, it cannot prove God's existence by itself.

          As I was discussing with someone else on here:
          Circular reasoning (also known as paradoxical thinking[1] or circular logic), is a logical fallacy in which "the reasoner begins with what he or she is trying to end up with".[2] The individual components of a circular argument will sometimes be logically valid because if the premises are true, the conclusion must be true, and will not lack relevance. Circular logic cannot prove a conclusion because, if the conclusion is doubted, the premise which leads to it will also be doubted.[3] (wiki)

          – if A = !A, then the universe is not rational and the laws of logic don't exists
          – the universe is rational
          – therefore the universe is rational and logic exists.

          An oversimplification might be, logic exists because it works. Contrary-wise, if it didn't exist it wouldn't work, at least not consistently.

          Admittedly, this rests on induction and therefore leaves room for falsification, i.e. logic not working, but that seems very unlikely.

          d) i) Yes, the "ground to existence" is something like Descartes' "I think, therefore I am." Everything else is less certain.

          ii) We have reason to think that we exist in a rational universe, however why it exists or if it even needs a reason to exist is unknown as yet.

          iii) I don't know that I would be a pragmatist per se, but there is probably much I would agree with.
          "Why logic?" Again, because it works and it is one of the best tools we've found for understanding the world we (seem to) find ourselves in.
          "why trust it if your understanding of its basis tells you otherwise?" I don't follow this one.
          "how do you know it is actually giving you reality?" I don't, ultimately, it appears to be consistent, rational, and knowable. And one might argue, how is a completely accurate/consistent/continuous/etc. simulation any different from reality? But I won't.
          Sorry, have to view the video later.

          iv) As I said, I haven't analyzed Madman, but after skimming, it seems possible that Nietzsche is in fact satirizing a belief in God. The Madman runs around asking how they can survive without the support of God, now that God is dead, only to change his story when it becomes obvious that nothing has changed, i.e. he in fact doesn't need a light in the morning.

          Much like your metaphorical ranting about, 'how can you trust logic without a basis?' Because it works.
          In other words, perhaps Nietzsche is saying, the death of God can not harm us because He never existed and we have been fine without Him, and the Madman is worrying about things that aren't real as he is a *Mad* man.

          "What were we doing when we unchained this earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now?"
          It is moving the same as it has been since before, supposedly, "We have killed him-you and I".

          Consider for a moment that you, the believer, are the Madman, not the unbeliever.

          "now that you've supposedly eradicated the foundation of logic"

          When did I do that?

          "...logic presumes some set of metaphysics – some CIRCULAR point of departure..."

          Perhaps so, see above.

          August 16, 2013 at 5:11 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ME II:
          a) you said: "I maintain that a supposed god's transcendence prevents him/her from being "fully man", because being man includes the inability to exist non-physically." therein lies the jump. on what basis do you preclude that? you're assuming that man is not spiritual... or that what makes God transcendent is his Spirit. and yet the Bible teaches otherwise. to be human is BOTH physical & spiritual. hence the "image of God" – which Christians claim is fulfilled in Christ himself (Heb.1:3; Col.1:15). and note well what that also entails: that God *planned* to come in human form in creating us (in a manner necessarily NOT contrary to him being us).

          however – and more to your point about our human condition – the Bible does also note that our sinful, fallen condition CANNOT be in God's perfect presence. in that regard, Christ – while human – has a *new, glorified body* as seen throughout the resurrection accounts. while human (he eats, drinks, walks, is touched, etc.) he also has apparently new abilities (appears in a sealed room without coming through doors or windows, disappears on the road, ascends into heaven, etc.). so, yes, something has changed after he conquers death.

          b) it is only arbitrary is the subjective agent is the one making the claim. however, if the Arbiter himself (to riff off the word) comes down and reveals himself – the Transcendent choosing to cross the divide, the Infinite making himself accessible to the finite, the Ineffable 'condescends' (as some theologians have said) & accommodates our limited condition by making himself knowable to the profane, etc. – now it is not "arbitrary" or random as you conceive it. rather, it all rests on the authority of the One making such a claim. Is Jesus who he said he is?

          to go right at your point on "logic," John 1:1 uses the Greek term "Logos" for Jesus. it is where we get our term "logic." yes, Jesus was claiming to be "Logic in the flesh." so yes, that is the sort of claim He is making. were you to make that sort of claim about another supposed concept of logic, it would require the same set of questions being applied: on what basis? on whose authority? again, if Jesus is God, it's who He is. if not, we Christians are idiots.

          but to press you, that is critique I've been leveling at your particular appeal to logic. without a basis, you are either claiming there is no such thing as transcendence (as pure materialists or naturalists do – which in & of itself is a leap of faith) or you are unaware that your logic is floating midair without a foundation... something you are presuming without realizing it. and, if so, that's why your criticisms are unknowingly self-refuting (you are doing the very thing you are criticizing).

          c) you admit logic alone is a circular & thus fallacious argument. but then you add pragmatism (an equally circular argument) and act as if that is enough to verify it. two fallacious arguments don't make a sound argument.

          for example:
          if you assume something like "only what is empirically verifiable is true" as your foundational test (as naturalism does), it fails its own criteria. that statement *itself* is not empirically verifiable. it's self-refuting... and yet now one is building an entire epistemology on that self-refuting basis and acting as if a functional house of cards is proof of a foundation when the foundation itself fails on its own criteria. just because you can 'get it to work' doesn't make it true. even if you 'get it to work repeatedly.'

          such purely naturalistic science has no basis for talking about truth or objective reality. it has already assumed (in its methodological naturalism) that it will ACT as if there is no such thing other than the material... and the problem is that many atheists conflate methodological naturalism with philosophical naturalism – without realizing the latter is a LEAP OF FAITH. again, in so doing, they advance self-defeating criticisms.

          and to go a little further: i do believe the universe is rational – but that makes sense since i believe in a rational Creator. if one does not, on what basis would one assume that? to do so (a la Nietzsche's critique) is to build an atheistic house on a theistic foundation... why would a truly random universe exhibit ANY order? order out of chaos?

          d)
          i)per the Cartesian "cogito ergo sum," wikipedia sums up multiple, later criticisms which are all rather devastating (especially the fact that it begs the question by presuming there is such a thing as an "I" in the first place). in addition, Kant notes that beyond the "I", how would one know one has knowledge of any other "thing in itself"? access to truth is not guaranteed by Descartes famous formulation.

          ii) now you're pressing out my earlier point. you keep appealing to the usefulness & functional practicality of logic & rationale – but again that makes sense to a theist who would have a basis for such things. it's a much bigger problem for the atheist & agnostic: why make such a LEAP of faith? why not see that as the very evidence you deny: that there is an Author to this?

          for example, it's not just that logic or physics "works," but why are there guiding principles underneath them at all?! even for Einstein's relativity (within which those laws bend), why assume there would be a law governing *how* it bends? not just relative to physical existence, but the principles which undergird physical existence... point being: it's assuming certain metaphysical realities without admitting them. again, making criticisms against metaphysics while doing metaphysics – the pot calling the kettle black.

          iii) it'll take 90 seconds for you to listen to the argument on the video (or just 6min if you watch the whole thing). it presses out the point. why assume logic gives you truth if your grid for interpreting existence doesn't guarantee that (if not outright tells you otherwise)?

          iv) no, Nietzsche is assuming theists are idiots. he's mocking commercialized atheism here – atheists who aren't actually going all the way down. read some commentaries on it – like Walter Kaufmann, for example. Nietzsche is pressing out atheists who (as i said above) continue to live as functional theists while claiming to be atheists. again, the house & foundation picture i've been giving...

          and no, the Madman is not 'the believer'. the Madman is Nietzsche. notice his critique: "I've come to early!" they mock him initially for asking where God is (mistaking him for a believer), when he's actually more of a herald of true atheism – and he pulls the rug out from under them (which was how Nietzsche saw himself).

          as i said above, i'm not in agreement with Nietzsche on his final conclusions – but i do appreciate (ahem) good logic, and here's an atheist laying a indicting critique of other atheists. his point being (to mix the metaphors): if you're going to ride the train of atheism, you can't do so on theistic tracks.

          August 17, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
      • Segoy

        And you are welcome to your opinion.

        August 14, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
      • hharri

        If you prefer hell, god allows you to make up your own mind to go there. His love for us includes giving us the choice to hate him

        August 15, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • Johnny

          What if you just don't think he exists?

          August 15, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Johnny: indifference is the final form of hatred.
          as any middle school girl can tell you, the best way to hate someone is just to ignore them.

          August 15, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Russ.
          Indifference is not any form of hatred. Ignoring is not indifference.
          Not believing is not hatred. You don't believe in thousands of other gods, do you hate them?

          You really need to get actual definitions, not ones you make up out of thin air (like your god ...made up out of thin air)

          August 15, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Richard Cranium:
          "We tend to be taken aback by the thought that God could be angry. how can a deity who is perfect and loving ever be angry?...We take pride in our tolerance of the excesses of others. So what is God's problem?... But love detests what destroys the beloved. Real love stands against the deception, the lie, the sin that destroys. Nearly a century ago the theologian E.H. Glifford wrote: 'Human love here offers a true analogy: the more a father loves his son, the more he hates in him the drunkard, the liar, the traitor.'... Anger isn't the opposite of love. Hate is, and the final form of hate is indifference... How can a good God forgive bad people without compromising himself? Does he just play fast and loose with the facts? 'Oh, never mind...boys will be boys'. Try telling that to a survivor of the Cambodian 'killing fields' or to someone who lost an entire family in the Holocaust. No. To be truly good one has to be outraged by evil and implacably hostile to injustice.”
          ― Rebecca Manley Pippert

          August 16, 2013 at 10:49 am |
        • Ian

          "implacably hostile to injustice" ought to make you hostile to the crazy Christian god who wants to torture you eternally for what you did in your short life on earth, after he made you with the weaknesses that resulted in what you did. Doh!

          August 16, 2013 at 10:56 am |
        • Russ

          @ Ian: who is responsible for 9/11: the Wright Brothers or those who took a great gift & misused it?
          we are responsible for our misuse of the gift of life itself.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:20 am |
        • ME II

          @Russ,
          "Anger isn't the opposite of love. Hate is, and the final form of hate is indifference... How can a good God forgive bad people without compromising himself?"

          So, it's true because Salt Shaker Ministries says it is? Really?

          1) While hate may be the opposite of love, I don't think it is the absence of love, that would be indifference.
          2) Unequal punishment is unjust, and may or may not be hateful. For example, forgiving heinous crimes simply because of a belief that some person is also a god, or infinite punishment for finite crimes.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:33 am |
        • Ian

          Russ, is your god who supposedly created us with all our weaknesses, responsible for us or not?

          And as for "gifts" from your wonderfully benevolent sky jerk, yeah, thanks god for cancers, malaria, typhoid, dengue fever, gout, tetanus, pandemic flu, hantavirus, and muscular dystrophy, to name a few. "Gifts" indeed.

          Your beliefs are quite pathetic.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ME II: no, it was not a authoritarian statement. despite her harvard education, Becky Pippert is not the ultimate authority. the goal was to give broader content to the idea – which itself was what is worthwhile.

          1) you simply restate the opposite premise. the entire reason i gave the quote was for greater sense of the idea. WHY do you claim hate is not the absence of love? what is murder – if not ultimately the desire to see someone not exist at all? and what better "acceptable" way to murder someone than to live without reference to them? hence my middle school girl analogy.

          that's showing the final form of hatred is indifference. how do you respond to that instead of simply stating the opposite premise?

          2) again, our lengthy conversation above comes into play... on what basis are you appealing to justice?

          a) as Richard Dawkins has said: "In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference."

          again, on what basis do you have a sense of justice?

          b) "unequal punishment... may or may not be hateful." no, it is hateful if simply due to negligence & indifference. think about it: what is necessarily underneath that? you are finding so little value in someone else's life that you might punish them more severely. their life is just not worth your time. that is hateful & injurious to them.

          again, indifference is the final form of hatred. saying "you don't matter to me" is actually a lesser form of so living that out that the other person is not even worth a thought (much less verbalization of the thought).

          August 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
        • Russ

          @ ian: you are begging the question. it's your assumption (built into the question) that we are debating.

          a) finite is not the same thing as weakness. the Bible says we were made not just good, but "very good."

          b) is he responsible? of course – but for what? making us 'good' – including the freedom to act. we are not robots. and that's a good thing.

          c) we rendered ourselves broken by what *we* did. we misused the gift of life for self-destruction. and that's why we are the responsible agents for our own self-corruption. again, do you blame the Wright Bros for 9/11?

          d) your list of vices shows that you're not hearing what i'm saying. we did this to ourselves. death was never the design.

          you said "your beliefs are pathetic." you might want to make sure you're accurately representing my beliefs first.

          August 16, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • tallulah13

      @hharri

      I am home. I'm more than happy to be here. What's with the histrionics?

      August 15, 2013 at 12:01 am |
      • hharri

        This is a temporary place we visit. We merely pass through.

        God has never sent anyone to hell. If we want to go to hell, we are free to do so. Hell is awful. Why go there? I prefer not to jump into a burning pit. To use the reality of hell as proof that god does not exist is as logical as saying I love candy, therefore god does exist.

        August 15, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
      • ME II

        "God has never sent anyone to hell. If we want to go to hell, we are free to do so. Hell is awful. Why go there? I prefer not to jump into a burning pit."

        Wait a second... who set up the "burning pit"?

        August 15, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
        • hharri

          Who set up heaven?

          August 15, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
        • ME II

          @hharri,
          "Who set up heaven?"

          What a ridiculous response.
          But to answer your question, most likely no one did as it probably doesn't exist.

          August 15, 2013 at 6:32 pm |
    • Reality

      Russ,

      A 21st century review of the infamous resurrection con:

      From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15: 14, Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

      Even now Catholic/Christian professors (e.g.Notre Dame, Catholic U, Georgetown) of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      To wit;

      From a major Catholic university's theology professor’s grad school white-board notes (not Professor Crossan. He is a
      Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies, University of Central Florida, Orlando , FL )

      "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
      Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

      Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

      Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

      The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

      Only Luke records it. (Luke mentions it in his gospel and Acts, i.e. a single attestation and therefore historically untenable). The Ascension ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers.

      The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

      "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."
      http://eternal-word.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2HEAVN.HTM

      The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

      With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

      An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue,

      p.4

      "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

      p.168. by Ted Peters:

      Even so, asking historical questions is our responsibility. Did Jesus really rise from the tomb? Is it necessary to have been raised from the tomb and to appear to his disciples in order to explain the rise of early church and the transcription of the bible? Crossan answers no, Wright answers, yes. "

      So where are the bones"? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, covered with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

      Added references are available upon written request.

      August 15, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
  13. Apple Bush

    Maybe when I am dead and gone I can pull out onto her matchbox or killing for door know sales at the carnival. It is not hard for me to understand. That is why I write it. If you were writing it, well let’s just no. Burnt churches are the beds that young men and women dressed or undressed like to pursue but you did not come here to ask me that did you? You asked me here because you are a frozen friend today. You have the worries. Do you think this will be the same as yesterday? Do you think the pepper will tilt north or the garlic smash tea into diamonds?

    August 14, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • Athy

      Only if the rain hurts the rhubarb.

      August 14, 2013 at 6:26 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      The Bush loves Rhubarb pie!

      August 14, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
  14. Sam Yaza

    finally something about the greatest band of all time

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hb7UUuXve5c&w=640&h=360]

    August 14, 2013 at 6:14 pm |
  15. Dyslexic doG

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJ2LehsA1dk&w=640&h=360]

    August 14, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      I am going to memorize that.

      August 14, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        Why commit lies & baseless claims to memory?

        August 14, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          Why pretend to know the future and another's will power and ability?

          August 14, 2013 at 7:14 pm |
        • evolved DNA

          Robert..that's what the religious do..

          August 14, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
      • Tips

        Start chain-smoking and drinking dangerous amounts of whiskey, too.

        August 14, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          I wouldn't suggest the chain smoking. Even Hitch didn't do that.

          August 14, 2013 at 7:42 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          I did the chain smoking. Quit 16 year ago.
          I did the drinking: Quit 7 months ago.

          Next tip...

          August 14, 2013 at 10:38 pm |
  16. Dyslexic doG

    Christians. When the bible says in numerous places that whatever you pray for you will receive, why aren't all these poor, Lourdes bound people already healed? Does your bible contain lies? Do you think that these poor people haven't already prayed to be healed? If they leave and are not healed, is that proof that god does not exist?

    August 14, 2013 at 4:35 pm |
    • Mellow out

      doG, I can't answer your questions. In fact, I think I see what you are saying now. I agree that religion is abject foolishness. thank you for saving me!

      August 14, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
    • Segoy

      Numerous? How many is that then?

      August 14, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
    • Newt E.

      Did Jesus say how to pray?

      August 14, 2013 at 5:38 pm |
      • A Frayed Knot

        Newt E.:
        "Did Jesus say how to pray?"

        Well, some man, writing under the name of Matthew between 80-100 A.D. said that he did - known as the "Lord's Prayer".

        Odd though, that Paul of Tarsus did not even know that prayer - and he allegedly spoke directly to this Jesus.

        Do you want to know why that is? It's because the prayer wasn't composed until about 20 years after Paul died.

        August 14, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
        • Segoy

          And how do you know what it was composed?

          August 14, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
        • Newt E.

          How do you know Paul didn't know it?

          August 14, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
        • A Frayed Knot

          Did Paul write this:

          "for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered." Romans 8:26

          Not a single mention of the most famous and highly-touted prayer in all of Christianity ( and allegedly straight from the mouth of 'Jesus')?

          August 14, 2013 at 6:26 pm |
        • Newt E.

          Paul hadn't met Jesus yet when he said that prayer to other men. He must have forgot to mention it to him.

          August 14, 2013 at 6:31 pm |
        • A Frayed Knot

          Newt E.

          Oh, and did 'Jesus' also "forget" to write a single thing himself while he was alive, or have it written at that time and preserved carefully as evidence... zero verified records of his "miracles" or other supernatural happenings. What a sloppy, inefficient god you have there.

          August 14, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
        • Newt E.

          How do you know all this?

          August 14, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          What kind of stupid god can't make his presence and will as known and as dependable as chemistry or math?

          August 14, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
        • Newt E.

          You want me to name ALL of them?

          August 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          No, because indeed, that's what you'd have to do: Name ALL of them.

          August 14, 2013 at 7:31 pm |
        • Observer

          God could make his presence known to everyone by just making an announcement to the world "This is God. Follow my Bible".

          It would supposedly save billions of souls, but taking less than 5 seconds to do that is too much to ask of God.

          August 14, 2013 at 7:32 pm |
        • Newt E.

          Maybe he is just shy. Is there anything you have said or did recently that may make Him feel unwelcome?

          August 14, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
        • Observer

          Newt E.

          "Maybe he is just shy. Is there anything you have said or did recently that may make Him feel unwelcome?"

          I had no idea I had the power to scare God off. He must be very sensitive.

          August 14, 2013 at 7:46 pm |
        • J.R.

          "Paul hadn’t met Jesus yet when he said that prayer to other men. He must have forgot to mention it to him."

          Paul wouldn't have said any prayers because he didn't believe in Jesus at that point, correct?

          August 14, 2013 at 8:07 pm |
        • Lycidas

          The Lord's Prayer could have been in active use as early as 79AD. Reference "Sator Square".
          (www.etsjets.org/files/JETS-PDFs/21/21-4/21-4-pp323-328_JETS.pdf)

          August 14, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      If they are'nt healed it isn't proof that God doesn't exist. It could be that his grace is sufficient.

      August 14, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        Correct, but it makes it a lot more likely that people who claimed to be "healed" from migraines every other day of the week are really just imagining that 'healing.' If god were healing people of "invisible" ailments so often as believers claim, then it seems he'd just as likely heal amputees at approximately the same rate.

        God so amazingly invisible and undetectable; so invisible, he may as well not exist.

        August 14, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
  17. Apple Bush

    Solve a layer of physics down to the next level and you are in a different universe. Solve new laws of physics and you advance again. New universes are infinite.

    The trigger: when enough multi-verses are normalized, they intersect. There is no recommended science. Change 0 and you have found another universe. In other words, 1 is now zero. New universe.

    August 14, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      Define "normalize." What do you think about the idea that our universe is a black hole from another and all our black holes are separate universes, and there are more of them than we realize?

      What if our parent universe has a cosmological constant slightly 'greater' than ours and the black holes in our universe have a cosmological constant slightly 'lesser' than ours?

      August 14, 2013 at 6:22 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      It should be obvious to you that we have not discovered the physics yet.

      August 14, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Read Heinlein's "Number of the Beast"

      August 15, 2013 at 9:15 am |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        I like Iron Maiden's "Number of the beast"

        August 15, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
  18. sdfgsdfgsdfg

    dfgsdfg

    August 14, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Athy

      One of the more sensible comments on this blog.

      August 14, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
  19. Dyslexic doG

    Leviticus 21:18-21

    18 No man who has any defect may come near: no man who is blind or lame, disfigured or deformed; 19 no man with a crippled foot or hand, 20 or who is a hunchback or a dwarf, or who has any eye defect, or who has festering or running sores or damaged test icles. 21 No descendant of Aaron the priest who has any defect is to come near to present the food offerings to the Lord. He has a defect; he must not come near to offer the food of his God.

    (thanks Badger!)

    August 14, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
    • Newt E.

      Did you get an argument with someone using Leviticus to try to support their belief? Otherwise, quoting Leviticus doesn't make sense – unless you know of some 2,000 year old Levite priests agreeing to follow these laws (they weren't required for everyone) posting on here.

      August 14, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
      • Observer

        Same God in both testaments. Mindless discrimination.

        August 14, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
        • Mellow out

          Could you please translate the book of revelations for us ole wise one? Could you please include ALL of your sources? I would like to know what it means, and the time frame in which it will happen. Could you also explain the WHOLE Bible by chapter and give its meaning? Please provide your sources for that as well. Thank you ole wise one.

          August 14, 2013 at 4:52 pm |
        • Mellow out

          Didn't think so.

          August 14, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
        • Mellow out

          Is this going to take awhile? I really have places to be and much better company to hang with. Cmon man you said you knew it all, what is the hold up?

          August 14, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
        • Athy

          I hope you're not holding your breath!

          August 14, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
      • Akira

        I think the correlation between Leviticus and the posted topic is clear.
        Also, Newt, do you use this argument against the people who back-up their bigotry against gays by quoting Leviticus? You should.

        August 14, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          Amen!!!

          August 14, 2013 at 4:52 pm |
        • Newt E.

          Of course, yes.

          August 14, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
        • Akira

          Excellent, Newt.

          August 14, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • Mellow out

      TROLL

      August 14, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        same old comment from @mellow ... nothing to add, just a one word comment.

        August 14, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
        • Mellow out

          Just gave you an 8 word comment. One word or 8 words it is still the same. YOU are just a TROLL always trying to pick a fight because you are right and everyone else is wrong.

          August 14, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          hey ... mellow out little man.

          August 14, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • Mellow out

      TROLLING TROLLING TROLLING got to keep on TROLLING.

      August 14, 2013 at 4:36 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        multiple words. very good little man. you're getting better. 🙂

        August 14, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
        • Mellow out

          What makes you think that i am a male? Are you GOD? Do tell TROLL! How do you know what gender i am?

          August 14, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          I am all seeing and all knowing. calm down little man. mellow out!

          August 14, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
  20. Dyslexic doG

    When did I realize I was God?

    Well, I was praying and I suddenly realized that I was talking to myself ...

    August 14, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
    • Newt E.

      One big difference between me and God?

      God never thinks he's Newt E.

      August 14, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      If I lived in the same universe that Christians live in, I would definitely believe I was God.

      August 14, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
      • Newt E.

        What universe do you live in?

        August 14, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          Naturally I live in the universe I live in.

          August 14, 2013 at 6:21 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          How do you know you're not just a brain in a jar?

          August 15, 2013 at 9:16 am |
        • Sara

          @Bill, you don't. But believing you are not requires far fewer unverifiable premises than most (not all) god theories and does not have the same problem with internal contradiction.

          August 15, 2013 at 9:23 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          It only requires acceptance of one unverifiable premise to indi ct you for delusion Sara.

          August 15, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
        • Sara

          "It only requires acceptance of one unverifiable premise to indi ct you for delusion Sara."

          I assume you are trying to parody someone since this would obviously not match with any definition of delusion with which I am familiar. It helps to specify the target of your parody.

          August 15, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Mellow out

      TROLLING again dog?

      August 14, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
      • Mellow out

        I am. It's fun!

        August 14, 2013 at 4:38 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.