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August 15th, 2013
03:48 PM ET

Egypt's Christians under pressure as churches are torched

By Laura Smith-Spark, CNN

(CNN) - As violence again scars Egypt, Christians in the country believe they're being targeted amidst the chaos following a government crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood protest camps in Cairo.

There have been dozens of attacks on Christian churches, homes and businesses in the past 24 hours. Full details of the attacks are still emerging, as the country reels from its bloodiest day in recent history.

Bishop Angaelos, the Cairo-born head of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, said he was told by colleagues in Egypt that 52 churches had been attacked in the space of 24 hours beginning Wednesday, as well as numerous Christian homes and businesses across the country.

Ishak Ibrahim, a researcher with the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, told CNN he had confirmed attacks on at least 30 churches so far, in addition to the targeting of church-related facilities, including schools and cultural centers.

FULL STORY
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Church • Coptic Church • Egypt • Middle East

soundoff (706 Responses)
  1. aallen333

    If you need any other proof of the existence of light and dark, good and evil, natural and supernatural, simply study the middle east.

    August 16, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "If you need any other proof of the existence of" the "supernatural"...

      So there is proof of the supernatural? This would be big news since so far there has been absolutely ZERO evidence of anything supernatural, ever, in all of human history. There have been many people claiming supernatural things, ZERO evidence of the supernatural. Maybe we should change the word to "supernotreallythere".

      August 16, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
  2. Honey Badger Don't Care

    The Jesus character as written in the NT either does not exist as written (he sinned) or is a complete hypocrite (faulty character) and I can proove it.

    August 16, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • JimK57

      Here is some information to help you. The bible was written by man. Jesus's original words have been changed over time to fit the agenda of the church. The closest text to what jesus said can be found in the gospel of thomas. Also, do not take what jesus said as literal. Most of what he said has a deeper meaning that can only be understood by those close to him.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        I think He said "blessed are the cheesemakers"...

        August 16, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • Troll Spotter

      Found One.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
  3. Bill Deacon

    The paradox of Islam

    By G.K. Chesterton

    There is in Islam a paradox which is perhaps a permanent menace. The great creed born in the desert creates a kind of ecstasy out of the very emptiness of its own land, and even, one may say, out of the emptiness of its own theology. It affirms, with no little sublimity, something that is not merely the singleness but rather the solitude of God. There is the same extreme simplification in the solitary figure of the Prophet; and yet this isolation perpetually reacts into its own opposite. A void is made in the heart of Islam which has to be filled up again and again by a mere repetiition of the revolution that founded it. There are no sacraments; the only thing that can happen is a sort of apocalypse, as unique as the end of the world; so the apocalypse can only be repeated and the world end again and again.

    A fascinating observation. Islam lacks sacraments. Yet the violence that is so much a part of Islam– embedded in its theology and its reality– is a kind of sacrament, a physical manifestation of Allah's will on earth.

    In Catholicism, Christ's sacrifice of Himself is repeated at each Eucharist. Islam's egregious violence in the name of jihad is a satanic distortion of the Lord's sacrifice. In both, innocents suffer. But the Lord's suffering in the Christian sacrament is redemptive, an act of ultimate self-sacrifice, an act of love. The suffering of innocents butchered by Islamic terrorists is an act of power, an act of the sacrifice of innocent others, an act of hate.

    There is a difference between Christianity and Islam. A difference as wide as love and hate. Christ's sacrifice is God's renunciation of all manner of violence, a renunciation of all jihad.

    August 16, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Bob

      The whole Christ sacrifice thing is a load of baloney. Christians, how is it again that your omnipotent being couldn't do his saving bit without the whole silly Jesus hoopla? And how was Jesus' death a "sacrifice", when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time with less than a snap of his fingers? Pretty pathetic "god" that you've made for yourself there.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      August 16, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
      • Troll Spotter

        Found another.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • AtheistSteve

      "But the Lord's suffering in the Christian sacrament is redemptive, an act of ultimate self-sacrifice, an act of love."

      No it's not. Substitutional atonement is immoral. Also I didn't ask for or need this fabricated scapegoat of punishment. Unlike all you Christians I actually am without sin. That doesn't mean I'm perfect or without fault, it just means that I don't accept what you consider as sin to apply to me. Sin is by definition the defiance of Gods will and since I don't believe your God exists then it follows that sin itself doesn't exist. You are all so hopelessly riddled with misplaced guilt.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
      • lngtrmthnkr

        Steve, sin is when you do harm to someone else or yourself. Most of us have done this. If you have never hurt someone then you would defy the odds and be without sin.

        August 16, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
        • AtheistSteve

          No.
          What you just described is unethical or immoral, not sin. I already told what sin is by definition. It is doing something that that your God forbids. That's why sin is a totally made up concept of Christian religious belief. Christians have co-opted the idea of good and bad and added their own label to it to enforce compliance. It's one thing to know you're behaving badly but it's another thing altogether if you're led to believe it upsets your God. Pure manipulation tactics.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:52 pm |
  4. WoflyDeerHeart

    {Not for atheist}

    heheehe Christan pan-theist think their smart with all their cosmos words

    i find deist and monotheist completely insane. since when do we go form Multiple gods to one gods, to Multiple names for one cosmic force, true gods are nothing more then energies but their are different types and frequencies, not to mention celestial body, and even beings here one earth that are gods as well.

    {for atheist} i'm totally cool with the belief in no Deities, that your choice, but i will still look up and thank the source of life for this world, the sun.

    August 16, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Theist, Atheist or whatever... you still sound like you have a few screws loose... Also, make punctuation your friend... it can help make your point more comprehensible

      August 16, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "think their smart"

      sad. just sad.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
  5. #prayforpeace

    Thanks for the warning, stopped at picture # 4, this is absolutely sad. Sad times for the people of Egypt. Hopefully they find a peaceful solution to this meaningless mayhem.

    August 16, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      "Peace sells... but no one is buying" It's not meaningless to them...

      August 16, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      The only way humans will have anything resembling peace is when we all decide to give up our addiction to religion. Work for your fellow human instead of an invisible fairy and you might actually see some progress being made.

      August 16, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        I hate to disagree with you... but I'm afraid humanity will only find peace once it makes itself extinct... then there will be peace...

        August 16, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Hey, I only said "anything resembling peace " not actual peace 🙂

          August 16, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        "When all soldiers lay their weapons down
        Or when all kings and all queens relinquish their crowns
        Or when the only true messiah rescues us from ourselves
        Well then I do imagine
        There will be sorrow no more"

        – Brett Gurewitz

        August 16, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
      • JimK57

        You are so right, people only kill for religious reasons. It is never for greed, envy or any other reason...

        August 16, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          I believe all the killing in the name of religion was done out of greed and envy, religion was just the excuse used so the perpetrators would not feel as guilty. Get rid of the hunting blind that is religion and fewer people will be able to use it as an excuse.

          August 16, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • JimK57

          You are on the right track. Now you need to keep following it and see if you can find the core reason people kill. Keep looking deeper, you will find it.

          August 16, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Let me guess; the true reason exonerates religion.

          August 16, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
    • Tim

      Must be scary for the Christians living in Egypt.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
  6. Thought Purification

    why make a big deal out of this? muslims have burned, destroyed, or taken over entire countries around the world, so forget about just burning buildings.

    August 16, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      because christian ratings are down...

      August 16, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Christians did it first.
      Muslims are just a bunch of johnny-come-latelies.

      August 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
      • Bill Deacon

        Did you really just use the "He started it" defense? LOL

        August 16, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
        • Mellow out

          LoL!!!! I thought the same thing.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
        • Kerry

          I didn't see that post as a "defense". A good comparison, though.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • Wayne

          Bill Deacon thinks he had an insight. LOL!

          August 16, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        The above posting was intended as a facetious remark, sometimes referred to as "jocularity".

        August 16, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Furthermore, should you find any of my postings to be offensive, incomplete, or otherwise unsatisfactory, you must remember the following
          1) You took the statement out of context
          2) It was a translation error
          3) It was clearly allegorical and not meant to be taken literally.

          August 16, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
        • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

          copykitty

          August 16, 2013 at 11:04 pm |
  7. Rainer Braendlein

    Strictly speaking, the Copts are no Christians but heretics. They do not believe that Christ had a human nature and a divine nature, not mixed, but perfectly united. They believe the Christ had had only a divine nature, and was only seemingly a human being.

    There was much trouble between the Copts (Monophysites) and and the Chalcedonians (the Chalcedionas kept the genuine faith that Christ had two natures) in ancient times. The Byzantine emperors (emperors of the Eastern Roman Empire) could not settle this affair though really struggling very much. The Monophysites lived chiefly in the regions of the Eastern Roman Empire which were at first conquered by the Muslim Arabs (Saracens): Palestine, Syria and Egypt. Seemingly the Monophysites were spared by the Muslims but the Chalcedonians were toughly persecuted.

    Compared with the ancient Eastern Romans the ancient Arabs were very poor and backward: dessert-dwellers. Their only basis of nutrition was the Camel but they did not know any agriculture. In the course of time they became jealous of the very wealthy and advanced Eastern Romans, and finally Muhammad gave them a justification for attacking them: Muhammad said that the Eastern Romans or the Chalcedonians had turned apostate from the true faith which was Islam in Muhammad's eyes. Muhammad said that yet Abraham and Noah had been Muslims but also Moses, Jesus and St. Paul. They as Muslims Imams had preached the geniune Islam but people did not accept their message but forged it, and the outcame was Judaism and Christianity. Muhammad considered Judaism and Christianity as destortions of Islam.

    Maybe Muhammad made the Eastern Romans responsible for the poverty of the Arabs but in fact it was their strict paganism and later the Islam which kept them in darkness and poverty up to today.

    The Muslim Brotherhood agitates against the West (America and Europe) as if we would be responsible for their backwardness and poverty. Yet, it is their own supersti-tion which keeps them poor and backward: The Islam.

    http://confessingchurch.wordpress.com

    August 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • Honey Badger Don't Care

      No true Scottsman falacy.

      August 16, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      Winston Churchill on Islam:

      How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sancti-ty. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property – either as a child, a wife, or a concubine – must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the faith: all know how to die but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome.[13]

      August 16, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Winston Chruchill is a fascinating man, even brilliant.

        He was however a racist.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
      • Alias

        politicians lie.
        Always have, always will.
        Please stop spreading last centuries' propaganda.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
    • Jill

      Rainer Braendlein, don't obfuscate the primary prenuptials with rasberries. Often, the pertinent cat presents fabled necessities in the parking chamfer. Realize your net precedent. Triangulate! Save the best for the alligators. Ever the bastille notches the orchestra but Wendy is not green and horses will capitulate. Filter out the log from the turnstile and cry prevalently.

      So there brown stare. Feed your inner walnut and resolve. Subject your lemon to the ingenious door in the presence of snow and animals. Aisle 7 is for the monetary cheese whiz. Faced with the kitchen, you may wish to prolong the sailboat in the cliff. Otherwise, rabbits may descend on your left nostril. Think about how you can stripe the sea.

      Regale the storm to those who (6) would thump the parrot with the armband. Corner the market on vestiges of the apparent closure but seek not the evidential circumstance. Therein you can find indignant mountains of pigs and apples. Descend eloquently as you debate the ceiling of your warning fulcrum. Vacate the corncob profusely and and don’t dote on the pancreas.

      Next up, control your wood. Have at the cat with your watch on the fore. Aft! Smarties (12)! Rome wasn’t kevetched in an autumn nightie. (42) See yourself for the turntable on the escalator. Really peruse the garage spider definitely again again with brown. Now we have an apparent congestion, so be it here. Just a moment is not a pod of beef for the ink well nor can it be (4) said that Karen was there in the millpond.

      Garbage out just like the candle in the kitty so. Go, go, go until the vacuum meets the upward vacation. Sell the yellow. Then trim the bus before the ten cheese please Louise. Segregate from the koan and stew the ship vigorously.

      And remember, never pass up an opportunity to watch an elephant paint Mozart.

      August 16, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
      • Lawrence

        Jill, I think you're overdue to a trip to the lab to have your bolts tightened...

        August 16, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
        • Star

          The irony...

          August 16, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
    • mike teall

      Regardless of your opinion it is still offensive to burn or torch any religious building, mosque, church, or temple.

      August 16, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        Other than destruction of property is not very neighborly (and illegal)... why is it offensive? They are just buildings...

        August 16, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
    • Reality

      And once again we come to bring Rainer the Lutheran back into the 21st century:

      Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      August 16, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Rainer,

      "The Monophysites lived chiefly in the regions of the Eastern Roman Empire which were at first conquered by the Muslim Arabs (Saracens): Palestine, Syria and Egypt. Seemingly the Monophysites were spared by the Muslims but the Chalcedonians were toughly persecuted."

      In Alexandria the Byzantine Greeks (your Chanceldonians) exiled the Coptic Patriarch as an attempt to convert the Copts shortly before the Muslims arrived in 641.

      The Copts reacted by simply trading their Greek masters for Muslim masters, being happy to pay the ji.zya to the Caliphate rather than their eastern Roman taxes to Constantinople – because the Muslims let them have their Patriarch back.

      Such is the way the Muslim conquest happened – frequently because Christians were always fighting with each other* on the 'true nature of God'. Something they are still doing.

      * Including killing each other.

      August 16, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
  8. Julia

    as Jessica implied I'm shocked that some people able to make $4207 in 4 weeks on the internet. have you read this web site............... miniurl.com/dv2f

    August 16, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • midwest rail

      If your website is that great, why are you here stealing advertising ?

      August 16, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      useless trollbot

      August 16, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
  9. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    hmmm... I wonder Egyptian security got those M113's, HMMWV's and D7 dozers?

    August 16, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • Honey Badger Don't Care

      Same place that they got the M1A2 Abrams tanks that they have.

      August 16, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        yup

        August 16, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
  10. bostontola

    I wonder if the Muslims who are attacking Christian churches think they are doing what allah wants. One religion's low view of another religion has such deep contempt. Most atheists don't have that level of contempt for any religion. It seems people can easily see the falsehood of every other religion but their own. Of course, people within every other religion see the falsehood of yours.

    August 16, 2013 at 11:15 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      It's strange to me why they seem so vehemently anti-Christian. Sunni and Shia are very reverent about Jesus, so why such hatred for his followers?

      August 16, 2013 at 11:28 am |
      • bostontola

        Good question. Why do Sunnis kill Shiites. Why do Protestants kill Catholics. Etc.

        August 16, 2013 at 11:35 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          The minutiae. Pathetic really. It's like in Gulliver's Travels, in which Lilliput and Blefuscu are at war over how best to open a boiled egg.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:43 am |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        They are not vehemently anti-Christian. Egypt is now politically polarized. They are vehemently anti-everything that is not a Moursi/Muslim Brotherhood supporter and doubtless Copts are visibly not big fans of Sharia law by Muslim fundamentalists.

        This is not religious. It is entirely political. Here religion is just a tool of conformity politics – in the spirit of "if you're not with us, your against us". (Not unlike tea-party politics.)

        August 16, 2013 at 11:41 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I imagine you're quite close to the truth with that assessment.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:44 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Centuries from now atheists will still point to the conflict of how evil religion is though.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:57 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I'm an atheist (well, apart from Odin, obviously) and I would never refer to religion as evil. I don't believe in evil as a moral absolute, but if we take evil to just mean bad news, it's people who are evil, not any ideology or creed.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • bostontola

          Bill,
          I don't think religion is evil, I think it is delusional.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Yes, there is always a rush of atheists who claim "I'm an atheists and I don't think this or don't think that. But there is certainly a contingent who are guilty of impugning religion based on historical wars and conflicts which are essentially political in a nature. Agreed?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Yes, but you should specify.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
        • Vic

          It's an "ideological" war, hence "religious," plain and simple!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Granted. Can we put to rest the "religion is the cause of all problems" arguments then?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
        • bostontola

          Bill,
          I never heard anyone say religion is the cause of all problems. You are chasing a false issue. Religions are bunk though.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Yes.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          bostontola

          C'mon, we've all come across anti-religionists and anti-theists in our day who seem to blame religion for all the world's ills.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • bostontola

          I'm sorryDave ,
          I never heard anyone at any time blame religion for all problems. Religion didn't cause cancer as an example.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • scar

          Every war and conflict humanity has fought has been purely political. Religion is just a micromanaging version of politics. Sorry Bill religion doesn't get a pass that easy.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          All may be an overstatement, but I've heard on numerous occasions people saying things like 'religion is the root of all evil' or 'religion is the cause of all wars', two BS statements.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          I don't believe religion is evil or the cause of all wars. I do believe that extremists take it too far and use it for evil and as an excuse to go to war.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • Lycidas

      It could all come down to the classic "Them vs Us" and using religion as a way to distiguish between the two. It's a good chance that religion of itself has very little to do with the violence. Just as Judaism had very little to do with the Jews being persecuted by the Nazi. They just wanted a scapegoat.

      August 16, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        Yes they wanted a scapegoat but the selection was not coincidental. Christians have a long history of persecuting Jews in Europe and the USA based upon the blame attributed to them for Jesus' death; that still exists today – Mel Gibson et al.

        August 16, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
        • Lycidas

          That long history has nothing to do with Egypt or this specific time.

          August 19, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • mike teall

      Being an aethiest is your choice, but there is no denying that Christians and Catholics have brought more hospitals, schools, orphanages than any one else in the world, they are the number on charity and developer of western civilization. Your aethist group has done what good for the world?

      August 16, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        A simple Google search will tell you that you are wrong about all of those christian and catholic hospitals ... they are secular... to allow their thievery to be all inclusive

        August 16, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        "Christians and Catholics"?>

        You speak as though these groups are mutually exclusive. Surely Catholics are Christians?

        August 16, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        They "... are the number on charity and developer of western civilization"

        Hardly surprising when the history of the western world is the history of Christianity.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        How many of those schools and hospitals were built by God? What? None? Oh, that is right, they were built by people and generous people giving of themselves and their time and their money. What part did God play if it was one generous person donating to another person in need? Why should some invisible fairy get credit for what that generous person did?

        August 16, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        You might find the following essay interesting.

        It argues that the concept of a hospital (as we know it today, there are early examples of clinics/specialty healing places) was invented by Muslims.

        The first true Islamic hospital was built during the reign of Caliph Harun-ul-Rashid (786-809 AD) in Baghdad. A well-known physician, Jibrail Bakhtishu, was invited to head the new bimartistan. It achieved fame and other hospitals were built in Baghdad.

        http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/hospital.htm

        August 16, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • scar

          Our modern medicine owes more to the microscope than anything else.

          August 16, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
        • scar

          to add:

          the first 'hospital' i.e. casualty management system was invented by the Muslims, by the Greeks, by the Egyptians, the Indians (Asian) etc. right after their first battle was fought – its pretty much a universal concept.

          The first modern hospital that we would recognize was Boston 1880.

          August 16, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Your point being that it is not a Christian invention?

          August 16, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
        • scar

          I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "Your point being that it is not a Christian invention?"

          Correct.

          The ancient Egyptians and Incas were pretty competent in medical practice both did cranial repair where there is evidence of significant bone growth after the fact. – the patient survived at least a few months, no small feat in given that the brain is a very touchy place to mess around with even today. That suggests more than a passing knowledge of physiology.

          August 16, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
      • skytag

        I'm not sure what your point is, if you have one. Religions have done a lot of good. It's one of the main reasons they exist, to bond people into groups and get them to put the interests of the group and others in it ahead of their own self-interests. But this is no way constitutes evidence that what they teach about God is true.

        August 16, 2013 at 5:42 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Bill,

      you said:

      "Centuries from now atheists will still point to the conflict of how evil religion is though. ... there is certainly a contingent [of atheists] who are guilty of impugning religion based on historical wars and conflicts which are essentially political in a nature. Agreed?"

      I am completely agreed that war is essentially political in nature; its causes are always greed, power, domination, etc, all things that, in theory, religion opposes.

      Nonetheless, religion (and in particular organized religion) is not only complicit (though admitedly in varying degrees) in most historical conflicts, it is a proximate cause for many and frequently the tool used by those who want the power control domination etc to rally their supporters – even in relatively modern wars. (The German Third Reich and this current Egyptian turmoil being text book examples.)

      August 16, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      • Bill Deacon

        That's a more nuanced view than some I've seen posted and one I can appreciate. We seem to be getting into the territory of people who lust for power usurping any enterprise they can in order to fulfill their ambitions, whether those enterprises be religious, cultural, economic or political. I wouldn't go any further to ascribe nefarious complicity to religion than I would to any other structure, when, as so many have taught us, that war ultimately lies within the heart of man before it manifest in his communities.

        August 16, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
        • skytag

          "that war ultimately lies within the heart of man before it manifest in his communities"

          The natural instincts for self-preservation and the survival of our progeny are what drive us to dominate, conquer, enslave, dominate, and control resources. It has nothing to do with our "hearts."

          August 16, 2013 at 6:21 pm |
  11. Vic

    I don't know what's happening here, I guess it is spamming!

    Anyway, I came across a line earlier by Doc Vestibule that I wanted to address. Here is the line:

    "Once a proposition has been accepted on faith, said proposition is no longer amenable to examination by reason."

    Well, simply, just like looks, "eloquence" could be deceiving!

    "Faith/Belief" in God is very logical by reason while it is not amenable to empiricism!

    August 16, 2013 at 11:02 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      Why is belief in a god logical? There is no evidence for any god. All the wonders of nature can be explained without the need of a supernatural being.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:13 am |
    • skytag

      Rubbish. There is nothing logical about believing in something whose existence is not supported by any evidence whatsoever. You obviously have no idea what the word "logical" means.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:14 am |
    • Honey Badger Don't Care

      Faith in a god is totally ILLOGICAL. Belief in something for which there is no evidence is NOT logical.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:15 am |
    • Mike from CT

      For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:15 am |
      • skytag

        Meaningless religious mumbo jumbo.

        August 16, 2013 at 11:19 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        Nonsensical bible excerpts do not make anything you say more logical... just an FYI...

        August 16, 2013 at 11:58 am |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        I think you meant to say "For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, you have been clearly decieved"

        There is nothing clear about a perception that you cannot explain or share with anyone else. It is as exclusive as a personal trip on a psychedelic. There are no psychedelics that generate identical trips in different people and strangely enough there are no two supposedly "divinely" inspired trips that are the same either. Why? Because it's not coming from the same source, it's coming from inside each of our individual minds that have different experiences and memories. Religious charletans and con men know this and so speak in very general terms.

        August 16, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
      • David

        Excellent post! @Mike from CT

        August 16, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Vic

      Attributing the "Origin of Matter & Life," aka "First Cause," to God is very logical by reason! Especially that the "First Cause" must be "non-temporal" and outside of the "beginning" of this "temporal" universe!" Hence "Eternal!"

      August 16, 2013 at 11:26 am |
      • bostontola

        Vic,
        While its your prerogative to attribute first cause, it is not logical. There is no reason why there must be a first cause.

        August 16, 2013 at 11:28 am |
      • skytag

        You can't have it both ways, Vic. You can't claim God is logical because you need a "first cause" and then ignore your own logic when you claim God didn't need a first cause.

        August 16, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        This is akin to playing a game of battleship with someone and after the first half hour or so you have only 1 small boat left but you have never managed to score a hit on your opponent. When you confront them about this anomally they inform you that their ships are special and have the ability to move whenever they want them to, even just before an impact. When you say "well why didn't you tell me I could move my ships!" they reply "Oh, you don't get to move your ships, they aren't special like mine."

        At this point any reasonable person would end the game and stop playing any games with the sadcheating little child.

        August 16, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Kate

          excellent.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Which deity though? Odin?

      August 16, 2013 at 11:29 am |
    • Vic

      I myself believe that Deity to be God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:35 am |
      • G to the T

        You mean Yahweh? Why not just call him by his name? If you aren't bound by jewish law why maintain the one about not using his name?

        August 16, 2013 at 11:39 am |
        • Vic

          Jesus (God "Yahweh" Who Saves) Thee Christ (Thee "Messiah" aka "Anointed One") Is Lord.

          Jesus Christ (Savior God Messiah) Is Lord.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:50 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          This is America, a const.itutional republic, there are no lords. They've got a whole House of Lords in the UK, maybe you should try there.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • bostontola

          Vic, what about Vishnu, the all pervading essence of all beings, Matsya progenitor of mankind, and Varaha who rescued the earth from the oceans? Just as credible don't you think?

          August 16, 2013 at 11:59 am |
        • Vic

          ?1

          I don't believe in monarchy and never will!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
        • Vic

          ?!

          I don't believe in monarchy and never will!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
        • Vic

          Can you cite scripture for those and we'll go from there!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          Are you serious? The Hindu scripture is older and more extensive than the New Testament. It is available on line.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • Vic

          Then compare that scripture to the "prophecies" in the "Old Testament" about the "Messiah" and their "fulfillment" in the "New Testament," and go from there!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          Please look up circular reasoning.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        But you haven't established that there was a first cause nor have you established that there is a god.

        August 16, 2013 at 11:40 am |
      • bostontola

        Vic,
        Your god has multiple forms. It reminds me of the avatars of vishnu. I wonder if that was borrowed from the older Hindu?

        August 16, 2013 at 11:43 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        Why Yahweh over any other deity? Where's the specific proof of his existence?

        August 16, 2013 at 11:45 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          You're asking two questions Dave.

          The first is "why one god over any other?". The presupposition in that question is that there actually are multiple gods to choose from. So, my suggestion to you would be line them up and choose. I think that will be easy.

          The second question is "what specific proof..?" The answer is the proof is acquired when you choose.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:55 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I didn't ask for a deconstruction, I asked for answers.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:57 am |
        • bostontola

          Bill,
          If proof is a choice, then there is no absolute truth.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Dave, I think I gave answers for both your questions.

          Boston, I don't see how you draw that conclusion. Can you elucidate?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          No you didn't.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
        • bostontola

          Bill,
          More than a billion choose to regard Allah as the true god and regard Jesus as a man, not a god. Another billion choose to regard Jesus as a god. They can't both be right.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
        • Vic

          That's where you start asking yourself, can man redeem himself on his own?1

          August 16, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
        • Vic

          That's where you start asking yourself, can man redeem himself on his own?!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Redeem himself from what?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
        • Vic

          In the meantime, you look at the prophecies in the Old Testament about the "Messiah!"

          August 16, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          When you say man, are you referring to an individual or mankind?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          There were many at Jesus' time that claimed to be the messiah. That prediction is like predicting a cloudy day.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
        • Vic

          Man as in human, that's right.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Again, redemption from what?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
        • Vic

          That is very well covered in the Bible about false prophets and anti-Christs!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
        • Vic

          Redemption from "death" and "separation" from God due to the "original sin."

          August 16, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          Your reasoning follows C=2PiR

          August 16, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
        • OTOH

          Vic,
          "That is very well covered in the Bible about false prophets and anti-Christs!"

          It is a very, very old tactic - to discredit the compet.ition.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          No, mankind can't redeem itself from the non-existent.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
        • Vic

          Well, you can simply say 360º to refer to "circular" than using the "c i r c u m f e r e n c e of the circle," which equals to 2πr, for "circular" is "angular" while "c i r c u m f e r e n c e" is a "length."

          August 16, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "That is very well covered in the Bible about false prophets and anti-Christs!"

          Any good brainwashing program includes programming to ensure no credence is given to detractors. Nothing is easier than claiming anyone who isn't part of your group is false, misled, or misguided.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "In the meantime, you look at the prophecies in the Old Testament about the "Messiah!" "

          Go ahead and look at them. The Jews look at them and believe Jesus wasn't the Messiah.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Vic

          Ahhh... the "Stumbling Block!"

          August 16, 2013 at 1:15 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          VIC
          "In the meantime, you look at the prophecies in the Old Testament about the "Messiah!""

          Is that why you support that judge in TN.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Let's look at one of the core OT prophecies about the Messiah.
          He must be a direct descendent of David.
          But Joseph was not Jesus' biological father – He cannot be a "son of David" through Joseph as a tribal line cannot be passed on through adoption.
          He cannot be of Davidic ancestry on his mother's side either was Mary was not descended from David through Solomon (and tribal line doesn't pass through the mother anyways).
          Don't forget that during that time, there were MANY claimaints to the Messiah role like Simon of Peraea, Athronges, Menahem ben Judah, Vespasian, Simon bar Kokhba, etc. ad nauseum. – many of whom were reputed to have fulfilled the Messianic prophecies.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
      • Madtown

        believe that Deity to be God Almighty, the Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ
        ------–
        So, the christian perspective then. If this is the absolute definition of God, why isn't it equally available to everyone?

        August 16, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
        • Vic

          It is available everywhere! You mean not believed everywhere. I have the feeling that you are alluding to place of birth or so.
          Well, that's a factor but it is up to the individual to investigate the "Truth!"

          August 16, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • Madtown

          Vic
          It is available everywhere!
          ----
          So, every last human being on earth right now, in all regions, cultures, and countries, knows who Jesus is and the teachings of christianity? That's your contention?

          August 16, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
        • Vic

          Not exactly. God does not require believers to be gods or supernatural. Faith is by hearing. As a believer, I try to witness to the Lord as much as I can wherever I can, although commanded but not required, and I don't worry about the outcome. We don't know "everything" about "Divine Justice" and how it works, that's not our job!

          August 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Madtown

          We don't know "everything" about "Divine Justice" and how it works, that's not our job!
          ----–
          That's right, it's not our job to know. Because......we can't know for certain. I think you may be starting to get it, you've just admitted that your preferred version of religion doesn't give you the answers. Excellent!

          August 16, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "It is available everywhere! You mean not believed everywhere. I have the feeling that you are alluding to place of birth or so. Well, that's a factor but it is up to the individual to investigate the "Truth!" "

          The reasoning of a brainwashed simpleton who thinks in sound bites. Seriously, do you ever really think about what you're saying? Try thinking about what you've said here for once in your life.

          So, it's up to the individual to "investigate the "Truth,'" which you put in quotes and capitalize for no discernible reason because it isn't a proper noun, unless perhaps "Truth" is Christian code for something other than the truth. Haven't you people trademarked it yet, so you can talk about "the Truth™?"

          In any case, have you ever really thought about what this means? How does one "investigate" the truth? Isn't the truth something to learn or to know, as opposed to investigate? When you say "investigate the Truth," don't you really mean investigate what some religion claims is the truth about God? More specifically, in your case you mean what Christians claim is the truth about God, right?

          And how is one supposed to become aware of this truth you claim is "the Truth?" I love the way you gloss over the fact that anything you hear about God that might motivate you to investigate further depends entirely on the teachings to which you're exposed. This is largely a function of where you live, and more directly, on what you were taught growing up. You obviously can't deal with the ramifications of that aspect or reality so you simply gloss over it and avoid dealing with it.

          So, please explain to us how someone in a tribe that has no communication with the outside world is supposed to investigate Christian Truth™? Why would someone in a country where the overwhelming majority of the population aren't Christians be expected to investigate what Christians claim about God?

          August 16, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
      • skytag

        Yes, we know you do. Do you know that believing in something isn't enough to make it real? Do you know there are people believe very different things about God? Do you know there have been people who believed in Zeus and Apollo, Odin and Thor, Ra and Osiris? One reason the Japanese fought so tenaciously in WWII is that they believed their emperor was a god. Believing something doesn't make it true.

        August 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Vic

          There are so many s u p e r s t i t i o n s and mythologies that are called "belief systems/faiths/religions" as well as "scriptures." It boils down to the "individual" to investigate and discern the "Truth!" At least that's what I did.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          The question is what differentiates your myth from the others? There's no evidence for any of them.

          August 16, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "There are so many s u p e r s t i t i o n s and mythologies that are called "belief systems/faiths/religions" as well as "scriptures." "

          Of which yours is but one.

          "It boils down to the "individual" "

          Why do you put "individual" in quotes?

          "to investigate and discern the "Truth!" "

          I can only assume you write "Truth" that way because it is somehow fundamentally different than what people would normally think of as truth. It's code for something, like "the Bible," right?

          August 16, 2013 at 4:22 pm |
        • JimK57

          Vic, you are correct. It is up to the individual to constantly test his beliefs and disregard what does not fit. I believe in an afterlife because of a personal experience.

          August 16, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
        • Madtown

          It boils down to the "individual" to investigate and discern the "Truth!"
          -----
          This is the interesting thing. Everyone who is fervently religious believes they have done this! Consider the example that's been given to you before: a person in a culture with no knowledge of christianity, but believes in God and has certain traditions that he/she follows. Like you, they believe they have discerned the truth. However, they've never heard of YOUR TRUTH.

          Now, turn it around: what if the "real truth", the "real religion", actually resides within a culture you have no contact with? What if God actually had granted the real religion to another group, and you'd never have heard of it? Is this a possibility? Think about it.

          August 16, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
        • Vic

          @skytag "..."

          Jesus Christ is the "Truth."

          August 16, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Faith is belief in spite of the evidence (or lack thereof).

      A quick example (with which Bill Deacon is familiar) is that of the Trinity.
      According to the Catholic Catechism:
      "The mystery of the Most Holy Trinity is the central mystery of the Christian faith and of Christian life. God alone can make it known to us by revealing himself as Father, Son and Holy Spirit."

      There can be no evidence of this type of supernatural relationship – it must be accepted on faith as dogma.
      The dogmatic principle of the Holy Trinity is not amenable to examination by reason becuase ypu must accept the answer as given – therefore is no need to ask any questions.

      August 16, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
      • Vic

        That proves what's in the "scripture" God is true for the most part since man can not come up with that premise as well as many others!

        August 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          So you're saying that because the whole concept is insanely farfetched and extraordinarily unlikely, it must be true?
          Is it your practice to believe 6 impossible things before breakfast?

          August 16, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
      • Vic

        That proves what's in the "scripture" about God is true for the most part since man can not come up with that premise as well as many others!

        August 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • Madtown

          You've never read Stephen King, have you?

          August 16, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
  12. jkghjkghjkghjk

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    August 16, 2013 at 10:48 am |
  13. Laurence Charles Ringo

    Sorry"Truthprevails1",but you gave yourself away big time in one of your posts(Thank you for that.) Your vitriolic hatred proves you were NEVER a Christian to begin with;your own claim made that evident.How so? Its simple:No knowledgeable,genuine Christian would ever claim they were"raised Christian",that's not how it works,and ALL true Christians know that.And here's another fact atheists overlook,though only God knows why,LOL! All Christians were once atheists,so what's your point? Your hateful,vicious rants do nothing except expose the sad state of your own twisted heart,my friend.I cannot for the life of me understand why so many atheists are so viciously hateful;its like you all are mentally unstable or something;I rarely hear people of faith spew the venom you God-haters do!! I am firmly convinced most atheists know any authentic Christians(a surprisingly rare breed,actually,though still vastly outnumbering atheists.) At any rate,you need to take a deep,deep breath my friend.Your hatred and bitterness may wind up destroying you and those of you ilk.We Christians have nothing to fear from you,even when you're in power.(Like Adolph,Mao,and Stalin.) By the way,did someone quote Heinlen? Isn't he dead? What was his point?-JESUS IS LORD!!!

    August 16, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • midwest rail

      " I rarely hear people of faith spew the venom you God-haters do!! "
      You must not read the comments here very often.

      August 16, 2013 at 10:29 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        LOL

        August 16, 2013 at 10:33 am |
      • skytag

        No kidding. This guy suffers from multiple delusions.

        August 16, 2013 at 11:15 am |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Well... Ringo is obviously: 1. an imbecile... 2. a 'true' christian (and all of the thinly veiled hate for anyone not on the same page as him that implies) 3. oh... and a genius for calling atheists 'god-haters'... I'm sure there are more points, but that's the gist...

      August 16, 2013 at 10:39 am |
      • Tre Scotsman

        Nay, he isn't a true christian anymore than you are a true atheist.

        August 16, 2013 at 10:48 am |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          I'm sure you were trying to be witty and insightful...

          August 16, 2013 at 11:45 am |
    • Honey Badger Don't Care

      Yes Ringo is right.

      A xtain would never hate someone because of the collor of their skin. oh wait, never mind.

      Well, they would never hate someone for their se xual orientation. Darn, missed that one too.

      They for sure would not hate someone and bomb or shoot someone for condoning abortions. I give up.

      August 16, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • skytag

      What a lunatic, more proof that Christianity can destroy people's minds.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:17 am |
    • truthprevails1

      Wow Ringo, you'd be completely wrong but that's okay. Your lack of knowledge of my past proves nothing. Just because I have no use or see any logic in your belief system does not mean that I was never a christian, in fact you should tell that to my family who would argue with you or perhaps to my husband-AtheistSteve, who would also tell you different.
      I have no tolerance for a belief system that fools the followers in to accepting anything on faith alone; that makes them live for death, promising them something that can't be shown with any evidence to exist; that misleads them to believe that prayer works when the numerous studies show it is a fallacy-a pseudo remedy, nothing more (kind of like a sugar pill); that teaches you it is okay to hate and judge based on what the book says.
      Have you actually read the bible? It is a horror story at best with a few 'feel good' passages in it to appease and fool people.
      I'm sorry but I refuse to believe in a god that would send its creation to a place of eternal torture for not believing when it has never shown itself to exist; when the book that speaks of it preaches child abuse-slavery-oppression of women and LGBT. Your god is not something worthy of respect and it wasn't until I researched it further and actually took time to examine the bible that I realized this.
      I do believe that it is gullibility at work and not healthy. However you feel the same about all others who don't believe in your version of god.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:50 am |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      I was a pastor for over a decade and I heard people use the term "raised Christian" all the time as I myself was "raised Christian". They are talking about the indoctrination that begins almost before our children can walk. Christian parents believe if they steep their child in the faith and really soak them for the first few years the child won't likely have enough individual strength to break away during their life time. The sad part is this has worked very well in the past. Now however, their children have access to actual facts and real science even if the parents try to shield them from it. The internet is the greatest boon to access of information the world has ever seen and it's the reason more and more millenials are not only turning away from the Church, but never going there in the first place...

      August 16, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
      • truthprevails1

        Thank you! I was raised by christian parents who toted us off to Sunday school every week. It wasn't until I left the small town and moved to the city that I started to question my belief's. Exposure to other beliefs can make one rethink their position. I raised my daughter without a belief system and allowed her to explore for herself. Her father is pagan and that is the path she has chosen, although she has explored christianity (Mormonism to be exact) and she took a Comparative Religions course in her final year of high school.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
      • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

        The socialists, AKA pwogwessives, have been pushing their agenda in americult since before you were born and won. Got nuthin' to do with the internet.

        August 16, 2013 at 10:58 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          I don't even know why I'm replying to you but as much as you're partially right, the biggest onset of people letting go of religion has been due to the communities they find on the internet, that fact is not exactly hard to see.

          August 17, 2013 at 6:26 am |
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    August 16, 2013 at 10:21 am |
  15. CVBCVBXCVB

    XCVBXCVB

    August 16, 2013 at 10:05 am |
  16. HappyCatholic

    Let's pray for our brothers and sisters in these regions. May God give them His grace and strength to withstand this.

    August 16, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Bob

      Hundreds have already died from the violence, and thousands have already been injured and are suffering. Why hasn't your god lifted a finger to stop the suffering?

      And why hasn't he ever answered a prayer?

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      August 16, 2013 at 10:15 am |
      • Mellow out

        "God has never answered any prayers". And you know this how? God hasn't healed Mental retardation either, so I guess you are doomed.

        August 16, 2013 at 10:45 am |
        • skytag

          Okay, where's the objective evidence God has ever answered a prayer?

          August 16, 2013 at 11:21 am |
        • Athy

          Hmm. Strange silence.

          August 16, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      God’s gift of holiness is a Christlike love of God and humanity. Love must sometimes bear a stern countenance for the sake of ultimate good. Christ attacked hypocrites among the Pharisees, but died forgiving them. Paul excommunicated the incestuous man at Corinth “that his spirit may be saved.” Some Christians fought the Crusades with noble zeal, in spite of the unworthy motives of others. Today, after senseless wars, and with a deeper understanding of the complex nature of human motives, we shrink from any use of violence, physical or “silent.” This wholesome development continues as people debate whether it is possible for a Christian to be an absolute pacifist or whether evil must sometimes be repelled by force.

      August 16, 2013 at 10:17 am |
      • Jerry

        Gifts from god include cancer too.

        Thanks for the presents god. No really.

        August 16, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Prayer never stopped a bullet... good luck with that...

      August 16, 2013 at 10:45 am |
    • ME II

      @HappyCatholic,
      You are, of course, welcome to pray if you like, but don't think it does anything more than make you feel better.

      August 16, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • skytag

      There is no evidence any prayer ever uttered has ever been answered. Prayer is a complete waste of time. The time spent uttering them is wasted, and the time spent rationalizing why God didn't answer them is wasted on top of that.

      August 16, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      'Men can use no better arms to drive away the devil, than prayer and the sign of the cross.'

      St. Teresa of Jesus

      August 16, 2013 at 11:49 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        Perfectly apropos – utilize a useless endeavor (prayer) to ward off a fictional character (the Devil)... LOL...

        August 16, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
      • ME II

        @Bill Deacon,
        Thanks. If I run into the devil I will gladly test your, or St. Teresa's, hypothesis.

        August 16, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
      • fyi

        Bill Deacon,
        Re: St. Teresa's claim

        su·per·sti·tion
        /ˌso͞opərˈstiSHən/
        Noun

        1. Excessively credulous belief in and reverence for supernatural beings.
        2. A widely held but unjustified belief in supernatural causation leading to certain consequences of an action or event, or a practice...

        August 16, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
  17. Reality

    Once again, some words all sides should seriously ponder:

    Putting the kibosh on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    • A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached and belief that various beings (angels?, tinkerbells? etc) exist that we, as mortals, cannot comprehend makes for a no on Sikhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

    e.g. Taoism

    "The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

    Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother's womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. "

    August 16, 2013 at 9:04 am |
  18. @ Age of

    @

    August 16, 2013 at 7:39 am |
  19. Jeshua

    If your a Christian, and your reading this, May I ask you this, PRAY for the church, pray that the False Prophets be driven out, and pray that our eyes and ears be opened pray that we may live through our suffering, pray that God will Not forsake us, cry out to God as his people, pray that the fools may no longer be fools, pray for reason, pray for courage, pray that you may not be afraid, not be afraid at all to speak the name of Christ to all the earth, pray that we may Rejoice in our trials and tribulations, and that we may sing praises to thank the lord for our suffering, pray that we may not be deceived by the large words of fools, and the mockery of other fools. Pray that we will not drift away from salvation, and pray that we will be Christ onto this earth.

    August 16, 2013 at 5:56 am |
    • truthprevails1

      2 billion people on the planet believe in your imaginary friend, are the other 5 billion wrong and if you think so, how are you so certain???

      August 16, 2013 at 5:59 am |
      • Camus's Sisyphus

        It's called faith, same as the faith you have that someone loves you. One can't prove it but it's very important to them.

        August 16, 2013 at 7:12 am |
        • Mirosal

          love isn't about faith. There are tangible chemical and biological reactions that can be neasured. Faith is entirely subjective, but a lot of people think their faith is fact, when ther is NO evidence to support faith. You do not need a buy-bull or any other "holy" text to justify one's love, but no greater tool has ever been invented to justify one's hate.

          August 16, 2013 at 7:55 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          Actually....it is because I am not talking about the feelings that a person has but the conclusions a person has. When you love someone that is an emotion (I always find atheists answers to love funny because I know they are not honest enough with their loved ones to ever give them the chemical reaction line). But what I am talking about is the thought that someone loves you. You see a person that does things for you and you assume they love you based on that. Alot of people think they are loved is a fact.
          Lol, no one is sayin that anyone needs a holy text to justify love....not at all.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:09 am |
        • truthprevails1

          Faith is belief without evidence. Love is an emotion that can be shown to be true. You failed, as most christians do, to answer the initial question I asked. Now I get how you really don't care that what you believe is based on evidence, once again very christian.
          You know nothing about how Atheists feel or how their reaction to love is because you're not one. Most of us can say with true honesty that we know the way the christian mind is because most of were once as gullible.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:13 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          "Love is an emotion that can be shown to be true."

          Really? Care to take up the challenge?

          "You failed, as most christians do, to answer the initial question I asked."

          Not christian, thanks for guessing.

          "You know nothing about how Atheists feel or how their reaction to love is because you're not one."

          I know quite well how one feels.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:20 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Faith in your partner, your fellow men, your friends, is very important, because without it there's no mutual component to your relationship, and relationships are important. As a species, we must cooperate to survive and the bonds we build with others yield tangible results.
          Religion is a means to build or strengthen those bonds as shared rituals, fears and hopes create a tribal identi/ty.
          However, faith in the religious sense requires the willing suspension of critical though in order to accept supernatural propositions as "Truth". Once a proposition has been accepted on faith, said proposition is no longer amenable to examination by reason. Unprovable dogma can turn a sense of community into xenophobia wherein the group feels free to condemn, convert, malign or even murder heathens and heretics.
          Azurehatians say that God likes blue hats, Crimsohaberdashers think it's Red hats. As there is no objective evidence for either belief, the conflict can never be resolved- and so the reds and blues develop a deep seated mistrust and hatred of each other that lasts for countless generations – all over some imaginary mythological minutiae.
          Usually the only thing that will bring them together is shared hatred of a third group who reject the idea of holy headwear altogether.
          Religious faith is not a virtue.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:22 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          "Once a proposition has been accepted on faith, said proposition is no longer amenable to examination by reason."

          I would like to think there are those that don't fall into this. I know there are but still.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:29 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Faith denies reason, Camus.
          There is a difference between being rational and rationalizing.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:34 am |
        • AtheistSteve

          The word "faith" has several meanings. Christian faith is a catch all fall back position for acceptance of what cannot be explained. Such as-
          "Father, how can I be certain that God hears our prayers?"
          "You must have faith my son."
          In this case faith is represented as a method for assuaging doubt. No indication that God might not be listening or that faith might be an insufficient method for determining truth or that using faith in this way could be wrong.. It is granted a level of trustworthiness that hasn't been earned.

          Faith in colloquial terms refers to trust granted or reasonable expectations. Such as-
          "I have faith that the sun will rise tomorrow"
          or
          "I have faith that I'll pass this math test"
          or
          "I have faith in my wife's love."

          The first is a reasonable expectation because the sun has risen every day before. Plus understanding the motion of the planet makes the alternative unthinkable and absurd.
          The second is trust that I've prepared adequately. If I fail the test then my trust in my preparation was misplaced and therefore wrong.
          Same for the third. Trust that is granted tentatively. Trust that might be withdrawn if information of infidelity is discovered.
          In each case the possibility for the object of faith to be completely wrong is allowed, at least in principle if not in reality. The result would be a complete 180 on the stance previously held.

          Not so for Christian faith where increased pressure of doubt is dealt with by counsel to apply even more faith. This tactic is structurally dishonest. You would never apply this type of reasoning this to any real life situation.

          August 16, 2013 at 9:57 am |
        • tallulah13

          I love whom I love because we have shared similar experiences, or we have similar understandings and basic morality. I can trust them, because they have proven worthy of that trust. These are the beings upon whom I've chosen to spend my time, affection and attention.

          That is the definition of love to me. Religion, prayer, gods - to me, these things are simply a cultural habit and a response to the fear of the unknown. I don't mind that others believe in god. But what I do mind is that the use that belief to harm others. I mind that very much.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:16 am |
        • skytag

          "It's called faith, same as the faith you have that someone loves you."

          I agree. Having faith in God is like me having faith that Sandra Bullock loves me.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:32 am |
      • truthprevails1

        What challenge moron? I know when someone loves me, those emotions are easily seen and felt in how people react.
        If you're not christian, you most certainly are acting like one. Grow up little one, this is the 21st century and the original poster was making false claims and was asked to back them, which inevitably neither of you can!

        August 16, 2013 at 8:25 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          Sure sure...you just keep thinking your parents love you when it's really just their biological programming that is working overtime to put up with you.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:30 am |
        • truthprevails1

          Oh wow, so you don't believe your parents love you? I know mine love me...they've shown it in numerous ways; said it numerous times over.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:54 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          Keep to that faith of yours. It seems to make you happy.

          August 16, 2013 at 9:14 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Well, if they said it, it must be true.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • Mirosal

      You can pray all you want. Now, how about getting up off your knees, unclasp your hands, and do some actual WORK to help better yourself, your neighbor, and your fellow human being. Two hands working do a lot more than 1000 hands clasped in prayer.

      August 16, 2013 at 8:07 am |
      • Laurence Charles Ringo

        Obviously"Mirosal",your tiny little mind is so small and self-centered you missed the memo:Christians get up off their knees,roll up their sleeves,and help out ALL THE TIME!! Hello? What planet are you living on?

        August 16, 2013 at 9:51 am |
        • Athy

          Why don't they stay off their knees and help that much more?

          August 16, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • skytag

      Prayer is the biggest waste of time man has ever invented. Other than the placebo effect of making the person praying feel better there's no objective evidence any prayer ever uttered has ever been answered.

      August 16, 2013 at 8:10 am |
      • Camus's Sisyphus

        For some, prayer isn't about getting stuff. That is a misconception that many atheists make, though not wholly unwarranted. For some it's just a communion between the worshipper and their deity. For other it's a way of working out internal emotional struggles.
        I would like to think that reality tv is the biggest waste of time man ever created.

        August 16, 2013 at 8:17 am |
        • truthprevails1

          What the hell would you know about Atheists? Outside of what your preacher taught you, it is reasonable by your other posts, to say you are a clueless dolt about us!
          Prayer is the feel good measure christians get to make them feel like they are doing good instead of them getting off their asses and actually doing anything. There is no value to prayer in the real world, it's like speaking to air...it gets you nowhere.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:22 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          I have no preacher. And I know as much about atheists as you seem to think you know about christians.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:26 am |
        • marine1

          @ Truth
          Do you really need to call someone names? Grow up Dude. So if I say that I am a Colts fan and you don't like the Colts, does that make me a DOLT ? Really?

          August 16, 2013 at 8:27 am |
        • truthprevails1

          I doubt you're being honest or you wouldn't be supporting prayer working. I have a great grasp on christians, having been raised one and having left it behind because the real world is so much more interesting.
          You're either a liar or a troll...my guess is liar suits you best!

          August 16, 2013 at 8:28 am |
        • truthprevails1

          marine: Dolt is the least offensive thing I could call someone making false claims.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:30 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          "The most ridiculous concept ever perpetrated by H.Sapiens is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of the Universes, wants the sacharrine adoration of his creations, that he can be persuaded by their prayers, and becomes petulant if he does not recieve this flattery. Yet this ridiculous notion, without one real shred of evidence to bolster it, has gone on to found one of the oldest, largest and least productive industries in history."
          – Robert Heinlein

          August 16, 2013 at 8:30 am |
        • marine1

          Liar or a troll? I am neither. I have givin you an example of someone that used prayer and it helped them a you resort to name calling? I should have known. Go ahead and continue your name calling and denial, I am outta here.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:39 am |
        • truthprevails1

          marine: Unless you are camus, it was not you I was saying that to.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:44 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          I don't support that prayer works, at least not in the narrow minded view that some on here seem to be stuck in.

          You may guess all day long about who I am. Guessing seems to be the only thing you do well on here. But I know just as much about atheists as you do christians. Of course there is no way to prove that but you go on ranting about how I'm wrong. It's very amusing.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:45 am |
        • tallulah13

          Then why do so many christians harp on about heaven and the promise of an afterlife? Isn't the promise of immortality in paradise one of the driving forces of christianity? Have you ever stopped to wonder if christianity would have made it out of the first century is it hadn't promised heaven?

          August 16, 2013 at 10:18 am |
        • Camus's Sisyphus

          Judaism didn't promise heaven and it seemed to survive quite well in it's early centuries.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:21 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          The three lies:

          There is no heaven
          There is no hell
          There is no hurry

          August 16, 2013 at 10:29 am |
        • midwest rail

          The Big Lie as practiced by contemporary Christianity – " Love the sinner, hate the sin. "

          August 16, 2013 at 10:31 am |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon
          "The three lies:"

          You have evidence to back these claims up?

          August 16, 2013 at 10:51 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          It's a rhetorical device ME II. Here's another:

          It is docu mented that Elvis Presley's first appearance in the United Kingdom was in 1960 when the military transport he was on landed at Prestwick airport for refueling. Rocker Tommy Steele reported in 2008 that he and Elvis spent a day together in London in 1958 though. Which do you think is correct?

          August 16, 2013 at 11:14 am |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          The evidence seems to back up the first account. Most notably because the evidence supports Elvis having died in '77.
          Again, what evidence do you have to support your claims?

          August 16, 2013 at 11:19 am |
        • skytag

          @Bill Deacon: "It's a rhetorical device ME II."

          Translation: "I have no evidence."

          August 16, 2013 at 11:43 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          I think I'll go with the Tommy Steele report.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          The point being that the clamor for docuumented evidence, being not only tiresome, is also inconclusive. The fact is that Elvis and Tommy did spend a day in London together in 1958. This fact, while not peer reviewed and certified, illustrates that such "evidence" does not always reflect accurate reality. The fact that you link your spiritual seeking on such a limited data acquisition method just doesn't strike me as intelligent or even logical, two traits you claim to have in abundance.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          Sorry, I completely misread that. I thought Steele was saying Elvis was there is 2008. (that's embarrassing.)

          August 16, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          While I see your point, your example is but a single event that happened in the past. Here we were talking about the efficacy of prayer, which is an ongoing, repeatable, and testable process. There have have been many instances of praying throughout much of history and as yet there is no evidence to suggest that any of it "worked".

          August 16, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
      • marine1

        Really? I beg to differ with you.I work with a gentleman who is a Christian and who was diagnosed with stage four Cancer, he refused to take chemo and he prays at lunch and at his press pretty much all the time. Guess what? He is in remission. Don't spew your ignorance of something you don't know about. God does heal.

        August 16, 2013 at 8:20 am |
        • truthprevails1

          That doesn't mean prayer worked. Did you happen to hear from the persons Dr that this was the diagnosis or from the person? People lie about this sort of thing all the time for attention!

          August 16, 2013 at 8:27 am |
        • marine1

          @ Truth
          Why do you come here to bash people and call them liars and other names? What is your objective? To pick a fight? God could come to you smack you upside the head, and you would still deny him.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:32 am |
        • marine1

          @ Truth
          Lie about it? I have worked with this man for 20 years and saw him go from about 250 lbs. down to about 150 or so, so trust me I KNOW he didn't LIE. Can you just accept the fact that prayer helped him? probably not.

          August 16, 2013 at 8:35 am |
        • Why?

          @marine. Why is your coworker so special and the countless devout cancer victims that die horrably so forsaken?

          August 16, 2013 at 8:46 am |
        • truthprevails1

          Your god does not exist, there simply is no evidence to support it outside of the bible. Prayer is not what would have saved this man. Numerous studies have been done on people who have claimed similar things and all have been shown to be false. Look up the studies the JREF have done.
          Can you not just accept the fact that it might have been something else that stopped the cancer??
          I'll accept this over the answer of prayer, at least it is based on evidence and actual studies:
          "“Biologically, it is a rare phenomenon to have an advanced cancer go into remission,” said Dr. Martin Gleave, a professor of urology at the University of British Columbia.

          But knowing more about how tumors develop and sometimes reverse course might help doctors decide which tumors can be left alone and which need to be treated, something that is now not known in most cases.

          Cancer cells and precancerous cells are so common that nearly everyone by middle age or old age is riddled with them, said Thea Tlsty, a professor of pathology at the University of California, San Francisco. That was discovered in autopsy studies of people who died of other causes, with no idea that they had cancer cells or precancerous cells. They did not have large tumors or symptoms of cancer. “The really interesting question,” Dr. Tlsty said, “is not so much why do we get cancer as why don’t we get cancer?”

          The earlier a cell is in its path toward an aggressive cancer, researchers say, the more likely it is to reverse course. So, for example, cells that are early precursors of cervical cancer are likely to revert. One study found that 60 percent of precancerous cervical cells, found with Pap tests, revert to normal within a year; 90 percent revert within three years.

          And the dynamic process of cancer development appears to be the reason that screening for breast cancer or prostate cancer finds huge numbers of early cancers without a corresponding decline in late stage cancers.

          If every one of those early cancers were destined to turn into an advanced cancer, then the total number of cancers should be the same after screening is introduced, but the increase in early cancers should be balanced by a decrease in advanced cancers. " (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/27/health/27canc.html?_r=0)

          August 16, 2013 at 8:51 am |
        • marine1

          Why and truth,
          Don't believe that I claimed to have the answer as to WHY he went into remission, I simply stated that he prayed and that it worked for him. I believe I was responding to TRUTH who stated that prayer was useless. In this case it wasn't. I never claimed to know why some prayers are answered and some are not. BTW WHY? it is spelled Horribly not Horrably.

          August 16, 2013 at 9:22 am |
        • tallulah13

          My mother refused chemo as well (though she did have surgery to remove the tumors - and most of her lungs) and then she prayed. She lived for 8 years with her cancer, but ended up starving to death because the re-grown tumors put pressure on her esophogas to the point where she could no longer eat.

          You friend may claim remission. He may even be in remission (or he may not exist; it's very easy to make claims on the internet) but it's more than likely the cancer will kill him, prayer or no.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:00 am |
        • Bob

          marine1, why did your apparently rather nasty god create cancer and make your friend and millions of other humans and other animals suffer from it to begin with?

          Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
          Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
          http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

          August 16, 2013 at 10:05 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Because Bob, it is appointed unto man once to die and afterwards, the judgement.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:20 am |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          There has NEVER been a documented case of 'prayer' curing or remitting cancer... or ANY illness for that matter... wishful thinking is NOT documented evidence...

          August 16, 2013 at 10:28 am |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          Bill, evidence points to we die once and then there is nil.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:46 am |
        • ME II

          @marine1,
          You may think that prayer "worked" to cure your friends cancer, but that cannot be demonstrated to be the case. In other words, it may have been a coincidence. Cancer does occasionally go into remission on its own.

          August 16, 2013 at 10:47 am |
        • skytag

          Cancer can go into remission on its own, depending on the kind of cancer. Or, he may have been misdiagnosed and never had cancer. But even if there is a God and he heals people such healing is so rare as to be statistically insignificant. Even Christians know this. You won't find one in a thousand who will reject medical care for a life-threatening illness they or a loved one is suffering.

          In fact, the vast majority of Christians gladly seek any medical care available to putting off going to a place they claim is unimaginably better than this one as long as possible. Explain that one.

          August 16, 2013 at 11:49 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          Sky, I've seen you post reasonable replies to the so called "money motive". SO, I presume you have the ability to understand the following:

          Christians do in fact aspire to the end of life and the eternal reward. But balancing that is the recognition that we do not belong to ourselves. We belong to our creator and we are merely stewards of this temporal vessel. So, we are charged with a sort of fiduciary duty to employ it as best we are able. Sometimes this means surrender to persecution and death as the martyrs and saints. Sometimes it means a steady approach to death through the indignity of protracted illness.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
        • skytag

          @marine1: "Why do you come here to bash people and call them liars and other names? What is your objective? To pick a fight?"

          truthprevails1 didn't call anyone a liar, he simply pointed out that people lie, and this is a known fact. There have been cases of people falsely claiming they had cancer.

          "God could come to you smack you upside the head, and you would still deny him."

          Another Christian hypocrite, bearing false witness to justify his delusions. If truthprevails1 is anything like I am he'd be happy to believe in God if there were any reason to believe in him.

          "I have worked with this man for 20 years and saw him go from about 250 lbs. down to about 150 or so, so trust me I KNOW he didn't LIE. Can you just accept the fact that prayer helped him? probably not."

          Here's the problem with your argument: Throughout history believers have claimed God or Satan or good or evil spirits were responsible for any of a large number of things they couldn't explain based on their understanding of the natural world.

          At one time some people thought lightning and thunder were caused by Thor's hammer. People used to believe disease was caused by evil spirits and seizures were caused by demonic possessions. Even today, people are quick to claim God is responsible for something they can't otherwise explain. What you have here is just another example of that phenomena.

          Some guy prayed and his cancer went into remission, so you claim prayer was responsible. It's called a post hoc fallacy. Christians pray for stuff all the time. For every person who prays for his cancer to go into remission and it does there are thousands of good people praying they or a loved one will be healed of some illness or injury and he dies.

          If prayer were really capable of doing what you claim it can do I'd expect to see a statistically significant difference in the rates at which the faithful who pray and the nonbelievers see their cancers go into remission. Anecdotal evidence like this simply isn't good enough.

          It's good enough for people who desperately want to have evidence that God exists, but not for more objective people. Christians excel at telling themselves God was responsible for all manner of things for which there is no reason whatsoever to believe were the result of any supernatural influence. They believe that because they want to have evidence that God exists.

          But it's not just Christians. A group of conspirators attempted to assassinate Hitler on 20 July 1944 with a bomb. When they failed, Hitler said fate had preserved him to complete his mission. He saw his survival as having a supernatural cause.

          People see what they want to see in these things. All you really know about your coworker is that his cancer went into remission, and you're assuming it was because of prayer because you have no other explanation.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
        • skytag

          @Bill Deacon: "Because Bob, it is appointed unto man once to die and afterwards, the judgement."

          Religious claptrap. We die for the same reason all living things die. Humans, animals, insects, bacteria, plants, fish, everything. All you're doing here it trying to attach mystical significance to an ordinary, natural event. There is no evidence for what you claim and you know it. It's just a comforting fairytale to keep people from accepting that they cease to exist when they die.

          August 16, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "Can you just accept the fact that prayer helped him? probably not." I can accept it if there were not other non-religious persons who have had their cancer go into remission.

          The fact is that I cannot believe that your friend or anyone else for that matter would be able to pray and get help with their cancer when young children are lying in beds dying of cancer as we speak. There is proof to the power of possitive thinking and I can understand how to a religious person prayer might just be that possitive thought, but it is not more than a placebo allowing your body and mind to do the real work.

          August 16, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Since at least two of you have replied, with affirmative statements about conditions after death, I am open to hearing your evidence for "nil" or "cease to exist". Don't you really mean "We don't know and we reject your view"?

          August 16, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.