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May 20th, 2014
03:24 PM ET

U.S. to Sudan: release Christian woman

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Editor

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(CNN) - International pressure is mounting on Sudan to release a pregnant Christian woman sentenced to death for apostasy, with members of the U.S. Congress asking Secretary of State John Kerry to intervene on her behalf.

On Wednesday, a bi-partisan group of four senators introduced a resolution condemning the sentencing of Meriam Yahya Ibrahim by a court in Khartoum on May 15.

The proposed resolution encourages Sudan to respect religious rights if it wants the United States to normalize relations or lift economic sanctions on the African nation.

“I am disgusted and appalled by the inhumane verdict Ms. Ibrahim has received, simply for refusing to recant her Christian faith," said Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican from Florida and a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

"I also commend Ms. Ibrahim’s courage in refusing to renounce her Christianity, and I encourage her to remain steadfast. The world condemns her verdict and will stand by her in her moment of need," said Rubio.

The resolution was co-sponsored by Sens. Jim Inhofe, a Republican from Oklahoma; Chris Coons, a Democrat from Delaware; and Bob Menendez, a Democrat from New Jersey.

The proposed Senate resolution adds more voices to the international outcry over the situation of Ibrahim, a Christian wife and mother who is pregnant with her second child while shackled in a Sudanese jail. Ibrahim's husband, Daniel Wani, is a U.S. citizen.

In a public letter to Kerry last Friday, Sens. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Roy Blunt of Missouri, both Republicans, called the sentencing of Ibrahim "outrageous."

"We request your immediate action and full diplomatic engagement to offer Meriam political asylum and to secure her and her son's safe release," the senators told Kerry.

After State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Monday that the Department of Homeland Security would have to oversee any asylum application filed by Ibrahim or her family, Ayotte and Blunt followed up with a letter asking the two departments to coordinate on the matter.

"Due to the nature of this case, it is critical that there is clarity between your departments regarding the status of the family and their previous requests for assistance from the United States," the senators wrote on Wednesday.  "Any gaps in communication between the departments during this time are simply unacceptable."

The worst places in the world to be religious

Ibrahim, 27, faces a long and unpredictable legal journey, according to her lawyer and international experts.

On May 15, a court in Khartoum convicted Ibrahim of apostasy, or the renunciation of faith, and sentenced her to death.

But variety of factors - Sudan's legal system, differences between its constitution and Sharia law imposed by the sentencing judge, her pregnancy - ensure there will be no execution any time soon.

Ibrahim's lawyer argues the sentence should not stand, and an international outcry could pressure Sudan's government to intervene.

Sudan has not carried out an execution for apostasy for almost two decades, according to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

In 1985, a man was executed for apostasy and sedition, according to the commission, for criticizing Sudan's implementation of Shariah, or Islamic law.

Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican from Arizona and chair of the House's International Religious Freedom Caucus, echoed the U.S. senators' calls to free Ibrahim.

"Such blatant disregard for the value of human life - and religious freedom - is an indescribable disgrace," Franks said in a statement. The congressman also encouraged the State Department to get involved in Ibrahim's case.

Marie Harf, a spokeswoman for the State Department, has said the department is "deeply concerned" about the death sentence and called on Sudan to respect religious freedom and "approach this case with the compassion that is in keeping with the values of the Sudanese people."

Government officials in Canada, England the Netherlands have also condemned Ibrahim's sentencing. Andrew Bennett, Canada’s ambassador for religious freedom, said his country is "shocked and appalled" that Sudan would impose the death penalty on a pregnant woman merely for practicing her religion.

Ibrahim was born to a Sudanese Muslim father and an Ethiopian Orthodox mother. Her father left when she was 6, and she was raised by her mother as a Christian.

Her lawyer, Mohamed Jar Elnabi, said the case started after Ibrahim's brother filed a complaint against her.

The brother alleged Ibrahim had gone missing for several years and that her family was shocked to find she had married a Christian man.

Because her father was Muslim, the Sharia law court considered her to be the same. It refused to recognize her marriage to a Christian and also convicted her of adultery, with an additional sentence of 100 lashes.

Before imposing the sentence, the court gave her an opportunity to recant her Christian faith, but Elnabi said Ibrahim refused to do so, declaring: "I am a Christian, and I will remain a Christian."

Attempts by CNN to contact Sudan's justice minister and foreign affairs minister about the case have been unsuccessful.

(CNN's Tom Cohen and Mohammed Tawfeeq contributed to this report.

Why marrying for love should never mean death

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Africa • Belief • Christianity • Discrimination • Foreign policy • Interfaith issues • Islam • Islamic law • Prejudice • Religious liberty • Religious violence • Sharia

soundoff (1,194 Responses)
  1. thefinisher1

    Hello and welcome. I am the fake finisher. I made a pledge to eliminate my nemeses, thefinisher1 and my mission is close to success. I do this for my own personal pleasure but we all benefit. That is why I am a asking you to kindly not feed the trolls. With your help, thefinisher1 and other trolls can be gone and stay gone. Thank you for your consideration.

    May 22, 2014 at 6:51 pm |
    • bostontola

      Matthew: "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you"

      Oops, you missed another one. You are having a bad day.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
      • bostontola

        The imposter is back.

        May 22, 2014 at 7:03 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      Lol. It's not even working but thank you anyways. You basically bashed your own atheism whoever you are. What on earth made you think that's clever? In the end, you did more damage to your atheism than I ever could.

      Thank you, sir/ma'am!

      May 22, 2014 at 8:40 pm |
  2. Bob

    I like that the trolls are equal opportunity haters on here. They attack both sides. God bless America!

    May 22, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
    • hotairace

      You must have said something very significant, that these azzholes can't deal with, to get the attention you are. Looks like they want to shut you up pretty bad. I wonder why?

      May 22, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
  3. bostontoaddad

    bostonola
    Your lame attempts to paint me as trying to play God are about effective as my lame attempts to paint you as a dead beat dad who seems more interested with arguing with believers than loving his kids.

    May 22, 2014 at 6:25 pm |
    • bostontola

      You're the one claiming to know what other people are thinking. Gulp.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
      • bostontoaddad

        I saw you doing it and though, why not join him! Gulp! You don't like it when others do it?

        May 22, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
        • bostontola

          I don't care what you do. Your God cares about people claiming to have his powers though. Yikes.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
        • hotairace

          How do you know he believes in God?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:39 pm |
        • hotairace

          He could be totally trolling you and you are just making offensive remarks that reveals more about you.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:42 pm |
        • hotairace

          Being an atheist doesn't give you a license to act like a complete jerk. Damn.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          hi jack

          May 22, 2014 at 7:04 pm |
        • hotairace

          So now I've got my own secret admirer. How nice. Now you can fuck off azzhole.

          May 22, 2014 at 7:09 pm |
  4. thefinisher1

    I have noticed that atheists won't admit that they invented religion with their atheism but will cry and complain when you call them on it. Poor babies!!

    May 22, 2014 at 6:21 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      Why don't you crawl back under your rock fake finisher. Nobody is amused kid.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:22 pm |
      • hotairace

        You must have said something very significant, that these azzholes can't deal with, to get the attention you are. Looks like they want to shut you up pretty bad. I wonder why?

        May 22, 2014 at 6:34 pm |
  5. bostontoaddad

    And the cat's in the cradle and the silver SP00N
    Little boy blue and the man on the M00N
    WHEN YOU GETTING OFFLINE, DAD?
    I don't know when, but we'll get together then
    You know we'll have a good time then

    May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
    • bostontola

      Now you know what a stranger's kids think. More impersonation of being a God. Yikes! You are in trouble with the big guy.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
      • bostontoaddad

        you know what a stranger's GOD thinks. More impersonation of being a God. Yikes! You are in trouble with the big guy.

        May 22, 2014 at 6:21 pm |
        • bostontola

          Good thing I don't think there is a big guy.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
        • bostontoaddad

          I think your kids wish you didn't post online so much/paid more attention to them.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:29 pm |
        • bostontola

          Matthew: "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you"

          Oops, you missed another one. You are having a bad day.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:38 pm |
        • hotairace

          How do you know he is a Christian?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:39 pm |
        • bostontola

          Why are you getting all preachy, hotairace. I would never do that. Next you'll start posting Bible verses. Sheesh.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:47 pm |
        • hotairace

          Why be such a jerk? Because he was a jerk?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
        • bostontola

          Click on the last bostontola comment and it will go to "unknown host" not my wordpress account. There are imposters.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:52 pm |
        • bostontola

          What an outrage!

          May 22, 2014 at 7:01 pm |
  6. kenmargo

    As usual the slacker1 didn't answer the question focusing on atheism instead. How can you expect me to believe in your religion if you can't honestly defend it in a logical way? Simply tell us how god is going to help her. She needs him now more than ever. If god knows all, then he knows what's going on. The question can't get any easier than that!

    May 22, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
    • tallulah131

      He's too busy juggling three screen names to actually answer questions. All he can do is post the same nonsense under each name because he doesn't have time (or ability) to be original.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:20 pm |
      • kenmargo

        Like I've said before, religious people do more harm to god and religion than any thing an atheists could do.

        May 22, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
  7. Your kids

    Do you love me more than this message board?
    How come you can name more believer's alias' than my friend's names?

    May 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm |
    • bostontoaddad

      NOT NOW KIDS CAN'T YOU SEE I'M WINNING ALL THESE IMPORTANT ARGUMENTS. I'LL BE OFF TOMORROW MORNING. SEE YOU LATER!

      May 22, 2014 at 6:14 pm |
    • bostontola

      Now you know what a stranger's kids think. More impersonation of being a God. Yikes! You are in trouble with the big guy.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
      • bostontoaddad

        How many kids do you have? + How many posts you've made today = OFFICER BOSTONTOLA PLAYING GOD ONLINE

        May 22, 2014 at 6:23 pm |
      • hotairace

        You must have said something very significant, that these azzholes can't deal with, to get the attention you are. Looks like they want to shut you up pretty bad. I wonder why?

        May 22, 2014 at 6:25 pm |
  8. kenmargo

    I think we're getting off point. Can god (any god) get this woman out of her situation. It's not about being an atheist or what an atheist believes. Her beliefs got her into this mess, can her beliefs get her out? It's not atheism that got her where she's at.

    May 22, 2014 at 5:46 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      Technically, atheists invented religion.....so it is atheism's fault. Get over it.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
      • bostontola

        Wow, you might just be on to something there finisher.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          According to you atheists, we are all born atheists...so atheists we're the ones that invented religion. According to this logic, atheists were the ones that used their imagination! stop being hypocrites atheists! Your group invented what you hate!!!!

          May 22, 2014 at 5:54 pm |
        • bostontola

          I use my imagination all the time. I don't think those imaginations reflect the real world until they are tested and verified.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:58 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          Wasn't talking about you bost old boy. Ancient humans invented religion and before they invented it, they were atheists. The theory of atheists is pathetic!

          May 22, 2014 at 6:05 pm |
        • frank

          bostontola's superiority complex makes him think every post is about him.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          You atheists will not admit that your atheism is completely false. Hypocrites!

          May 22, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
        • bostontola

          finisher,
          Is Islam false? Is Mormonism false? Is Hinduism false?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:21 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          Are they false? They have faith correct? You have faith you're correct right? What's the diffence? You believe God is man made which is YOUR BELIEF system which hasn't been confirmed by "your" science. You already believe you're correct without have any physical evidence to prove it. All you have is what the rest of humanity has. You are too stubborn to see it.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:27 pm |
        • bostontola

          Are those religions true or false?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:28 pm |
        • bostontola

          finisher,
          BTW, I fully accept that I believe that God is man made. You agree with me on that for almost every God don't you?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        Atheists also invented spinach so I hope you enjoy your creation kiddo!!

        May 22, 2014 at 6:03 pm |
        • hotairace

          You must have said something very significant, that these azzholes can't deal with, to get the attention you are. Looks like they want to shut you up pretty bad. I wonder why?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:34 pm |
      • hotairace

        If atheists did invent religion and the alleged but never proven gods that go along with the delusions, then believers ought to pay attention when atheists say "sorry, we were wrong, it's all bullsh!t" But no, believers must cling to their childish beliefs despite there not being a single bit of actual (physical, factual, verifiable, repeatable, independent) evidence for any god.

        May 22, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
        • believerfred

          HotAirAce
          Is it childish for you to believe in naturalism when all evidence actually points to something unknown and not part of known natural laws as causation?

          May 22, 2014 at 6:31 pm |
        • hotairace

          What evidence? I don't think you have any but go ahead, prove me wrong.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:32 pm |
        • believerfred

          HotAirAce
          I would need to post every study and research report related to the origin of the universe and origin of life. Science came up empty handed. There is zero evidence that existence began by natural causes. It is only a hope that a natural cause is found

          May 22, 2014 at 6:45 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred,

          There is zero proof, also, that God exists.

          Same for Zeus. They are tied.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:50 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred, You may be right in that the actual origin of life may never be found, but it has been proven that life can be created by natural processes, and we know that evolution takes over from there. The imaginings of ancient nomads is no substitute for scientific knowledge.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
        • hotairace

          The lack of scientific evidence ("we don't know") does not mean "some alleged but unproven god did it."

          May 22, 2014 at 7:07 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          The problem with abiogenesis is that we do not have any idea what the conditions were on earth a few billion years ago. What we have is a massive amount of scientific experiments attempting to form components that can form self-replicating molecules. I am not aware that we an accepted model.

          May 22, 2014 at 7:18 pm |
        • believerfred

          hotairace
          No, but it has proven that natural process do not create life without intervention by agency (in this case a lab and a scientist creating the exact conditions with the exact organic compounds).

          May 22, 2014 at 7:27 pm |
        • Science Works

          Come on fred let us find your spot back in SciFi Wharehouse 13 .

          May 22, 2014 at 8:07 pm |
        • believerfred

          Science Works
          Belief in only the natural is unnatural. Consider a simple natural event like the fart of Ta itanosaurus. That would be classified as a supernatural event and may have been the real reason the herds fossils are clustered in groups.

          May 22, 2014 at 8:29 pm |
        • believerfred

          That should read Titanosaurus

          May 22, 2014 at 8:33 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred, The important part of that was that natural processes have been shown to form life. Also we do have a good idea of conditions at various times. And even if you had "debunked" abiogenesis it is not evidence for your god.

          May 22, 2014 at 9:11 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Given most agree that organic compounds and some amino acids have been found in meteorites a natural process is possible. There is no consensus if or how self-replicating molecules began without a lab and a scientist manipulating the process. I wish there was an easy way to tell which scientific reports are true. Personally I am not qualified so I ask someone who is qualified and they tell me it is only possible in a controlled environment.
          Even if we could establish a natural process I may do what I did with evolution. The Bible does not say what process God used to form man other than out of the dust of the earth. Well there are your organic compounds and here is your RNA and off the evolution trail we go. Even the Catholic Church ok'd evolution in Pope John Paul’s 1996 speech.

          I would be agnostic if not for a personal experience. I would not expect anyone to believe or disbelieve in God based on scientific evidence or lack thereof.

          May 22, 2014 at 9:37 pm |
    • believerfred

      Prayer most certainly is taking place. Freed or killed no beliefs or responses would change on this web site.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
      • kenmargo

        True. You should realize you're in a no win situation. If she is killed. God didn't care or doesn't exist. If she lives, you have zero proof prayer worked.

        May 22, 2014 at 6:04 pm |
        • believerfred

          On those occasions when prayer is not answered I rarely have a good answer anyway. Hate to use the old excuses so I don't

          May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        Fred, i also believe in the power of prayer, so i will pray as well for her, yet God's will be done. I want to share with you a passage you may well recognize. He is omniscient as His prophesy here shows.

        'And the Angel of the LORD said to her: "Behold, you are with child, and you shall bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because the LORD has heard your affliction. He shall be a wild man; his hand shall be against every man, and every man's hand against him. And he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren." – Genesis 16:11-12, NKJV

        May 22, 2014 at 11:08 pm |
  9. thefinisher1

    Why should an atheist believe "love" in exists when they claim they don't "believe" in anything? Love to them is just a word. It has no real meaning. Why teach your kids that when you are forcing a belief onto them? You atheists don't believe in anything that requires you to do something without the help of a scientist guiding your hand. You're like infants who cry and whine when they don't get attention. Atheist parents do force illogicals beliefs onto thee children but don't have enough logic balls to admit they do!!!! Hilarious!!!

    May 22, 2014 at 5:29 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Most atheists I know just cherry pick whatever definition is most convenient for themselves. When you ask them about it they start ducking and dodging. Ask again and they start tap dancing like Gregory Hines.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:33 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        I've noticed that they can't admit they actually have beliefs that they adopted but will attack with full force towards those they deem "illogical". If they teach their kids they love them, they are teaching a belief which can't be backed up by a scientist. They are like infants that like to cry.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:35 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Most say they don't know what love is. Which is sad thing.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:37 pm |
    • bostontola

      I never met an atheist that said they have no beliefs, they just don't believe in God. I know what the love experience is, as almost all people do. There are different flavors of love, maternal, for your lover, love of country, etc. So what?

      May 22, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        So it you have beliefs that can't be backed up by a scientist then you attack people for childish reasons? Love requires faith because it CANNOT be backed up by science. Atheists are the biggest two-faces liars of all time. Stop this "I'm better than you because blah blah blah!!!"

        May 22, 2014 at 5:47 pm |
        • bostontola

          Not at all finisher.

          Beliefs of atheists and scientists are based on objective evidence but haven't been proven. I believe that objects dropped close to the earth will accelerate at about 9.8 m/sec**2.

          Beliefs in God are based on faith only, no objective evidence.

          That is quite a difference.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:56 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Sir! You have the notion that you know what a whole group of people think about God. You must fancy yourself a God. Shame on you.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          Love can't be tested by science. It's a belief that you have. Get over it bost. You aren't above the humans you hate for not being like you.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:03 pm |
        • bostontola

          Chuckles,
          1. I have no god so there's no shame for me if I did impersonate one.
          2. I made no statement about what believers think. I asserted that they believe with no objective evidence. Feel free to prove that assertion wrong. You will be the first in history if you do.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
        • bostontola

          finisher,
          Love is a feeling, I don't need belief to experience it. I don't need to believe to see either.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          You believe you love someone which can't be backed up by "your" science. The feeling is based on faith which can't be seen, tested etc. You're losing bost old boy.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
        • bostontola

          Not at all finisher. I feel love. I'll admit, I don't know how, but I feel it. No belief required. I believe lots of other things as i've already stated.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:24 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      I see my secret admirer is busy posting under my name again. It is nice to feel loved!! Hilarious!

      May 22, 2014 at 6:01 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      Atheists don't believe in anything. That is their religion. They invented religion!! Too funny.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
      • bostontola

        Not even wrong.

        Wolfgang Pauli would say that about statements so ludicrous that they had less value than an incorrect statement (which you can learn from).

        May 22, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
    • tallulah131

      Don't feed the troll.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:17 pm |
    • thefinisher1

      Why do you think it is ok to use my handle to disparage atheists? You are a coward hiding behind me.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:18 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        The fake finisher is out in full force now. Loser, you are nothing like me.

        May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
  10. Chuckles

    Logical Atheist answer on love:
    "People sometimes say that you must believe in feelings deep inside, otherwise you’d never be confident of things like ‘My wife loves me’. But this is a bad argument. There can be plenty of evidence that somebody loves you. All through the day when you are with somebody who loves you, you see and hear lots of little tidbits of evidence, and they all add up. It isn’t purely inside feeling, like the feeling that priests call revelation. There are outside things to back up the inside feeling: looks in the eye, tender notes in the voice, little favors and kindnesses; this is all real evidence."

    What is this “inside/outside” dichotomy? It sure sounds like what we Christians have called “soul/body” for over 2,000 years.

    May 22, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
    • bostontola

      A logic lesson from 'Chuckles the God'.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:24 pm |
      • Chuckles

        Yes Sir! Chat board officer bostontola! Yes Sir!

        May 22, 2014 at 5:31 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        A dumb response from a helpless fool.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:32 pm |
      • bostontola

        Chuckles thinks he knows what's in people's minds and hearts, i.e. thinks he is a God. That must be a big sin.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          So do you Bost old boy.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:41 pm |
        • Chuckles

          You spot it, you got it. And you do got it. officer bostontola, a god in his own mind!

          May 22, 2014 at 5:45 pm |
        • bostontola

          I don't know what is in anyone's head. Chuckles directly claimed he did just below.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:45 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Says the Chat Board Police Officer God.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:48 pm |
        • bostontola

          Chuckles,
          I have no God, so I can impersonate one. You have a God and he is going to be miffed that you impersonated him. You will be called on the carpet for that.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:00 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Sir! I answer to God. Not to chat board police officers who behaves as if they know everything. Especially not the ignorant ones who don't even know that expressing an opinion different from yours is no reason to start acting like a big baby. Sir!
          Sir! I must attend to my loved ones. Good night sir!
          A parent who spends hours online arguing with believers on religion chat boards is a bad excuse for a parent. Sir!

          Have pity on his children. Sir!

          May 22, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
        • bostontola

          That won't get you out of this pickle Chuckles. God already knows what you did.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
  11. Chuckles

    When mommy says to her one year old, “I love you,” the atheist says she is not expressing anything metaphysical or spiritual. In fact, says the atheist, the mother is verbalizing the instinct to preserve her species, just as a mommy zebra protects and fosters the growth of the baby zebra. That’s it. Nothing more. It is instinct combined with verbal tags. When a parent “loves” her child, she is just adding a verbal cue to an advanced evolutionary instinct to carry on the species.

    May 22, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
    • Chuckles

      For the atheist, nothing sacramental, metaphysical, or spiritual is happening in a loving relationship.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
      • Chuckles

        Logical atheist come on lines:

        “Would you be my Valentine? I want to buy you dinner. My evolved breeding instincts respond well to you.”

        “Your physical appearance sets off a hormonal response in me to mate with you.”

        May 22, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
    • bostontola

      Interesting that you know how a whole group of very diverse people think. Are you 'Chuckles the God'?

      May 22, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
      • Chuckles

        All my atheist friends and family members believe in “love.” And this is how they describe it. Are you an atheist?

        May 22, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
        • bostontola

          If you had said, all the atheists I know think this way, that would be different. How do you project that to all atheists? I seriously doubt multiple atheists have exactly the same view on what love is. There is no atheist position on what love is, the opinions vary just as through the population.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Dang, I hit a nerve. Are you the chat board police officer? Thanks for correcting my grammatical errors.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:29 pm |
        • bostontola

          Not grammar. You have the notion that you know what a whole group of people think about love. In your own worldview, only God can do that. You must fancy yourself a God. Shame on you.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:36 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          Bost old boy, so do atheists. If your parents happen to be Christian and they forced you to go to church as a kid, the chances of you thinking it's a bunch of "hogwash" because you have an unhealthy emotional attachment after you became an atheist is extremely likely. In fact, most atheists seem to have childhood trauma they don't want to face whether it be a parent, a friend, or whoever caused something you don't want to face. So atheists seem to do it even more.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:40 pm |
        • Chuckles

          SORRY OFFICER BOSTONTOLA. SIR!
          When mommy says to her one year old, “I love you,” I PERSONALLY HEAR the atheists TELL ME she is not expressing anything metaphysical or spiritual. In fact, I PERSONALLY HEAR atheists TELL ME, the mother is verbalizing the instinct to preserve her species, just as a mommy zebra protects and fosters the growth of the baby zebra. That’s it. Nothing more. It is instinct combined with verbal tags. IT APPEARS TO ME THEY SAY when a parent “loves” her child, she is just adding a verbal cue to an advanced evolutionary instinct to carry on the species.
          SIR. OFFICER. SIR!

          May 22, 2014 at 5:41 pm |
        • Chuckles

          SIR! OFFICER BOSTONTOLA! SIR!
          Or else they tell me they don't know what love is. Which is a sad thing.
          SIR! OFFICER BOSTONTOLA!
          DOES THAT MEET YOUR STANDARDS?
          I AM NOT A GOD, BUT YOU ARE THE OFFICER IN CHARGE OF THIS CHAT BOARD? RIGHT SIR!

          May 22, 2014 at 5:43 pm |
        • bostontola

          Shame on you Chuckles, your God isn't going to like you impersonating him.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:47 pm |
        • Chuckles

          Yes Sir. Correct Sir! And you can play God all day long and have no qualms with it, because you think you are God. Sir!

          May 22, 2014 at 5:58 pm |
        • bostontola

          Chuckles,
          I have no God, so I can impersonate one. You have a God and he is going to be miffed that you impersonated him. You will be called on the carpet for that.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
        • bostontoaddad

          MY KIDS ARE MIFFED THAT I LOVE BEING A CHAT BOARD GOD MORE THAN THEM.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
    • Alias

      Appropriate name. aka I'm laughing at you.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
    • tallulah131

      Three names now: Finny, Sally and Chuck. You must be the most lonely, boring person in history if you are this desperate for attention.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:19 pm |
  12. Alias

    "Which countries are the most and least religious? The WIN-Gallup International "Religion and Atheism Index" collected data from 57 countries in order to find out.

    Some interesting takeaways:

    1. The poor are more religious than the rich. People in the bottom income groups are 17 percent more religious than those in the top income groups.

    2. Globally, the number of those claiming to be religious has dropped by 9 percent from 2005 to 2011, while the number of people identifying themselves as atheists has risen by 3 percent.

    3. Four countries have experienced a drop in religiosity in their populations that is greater than 20 percent between 2005 and 2012. France and Switzerland saw decreases of 21 percent, while Ireland's number of faithful declined by 22 percent and Vietnam's by 23 percent. "
    From http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/23/most-religious-countries-least-religious_n_3640033.html

    I think there could be some cause/ effect confusion from the poor being more religious as education is related to income.

    May 22, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
  13. unsername1

    what if she had adopted Buddhism, would International community or US had pressured Sudan to release her?

    May 22, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
    • Alias

      Of ourse we would have.
      Just like equal media attention is given to minority children dissappearing vs cute white children.

      May 22, 2014 at 5:12 pm |
      • bostontola

        I don't believe that for 1 second. I believe the US congressmen are pushing this for political gain. There is not a powerful Buddhist group in this country that would move congress an inch. I don't think they're doing this because it's right, they're doing it because it gets their base going.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • Alias

          Do you mean to say that if Casey Anthony had been a minority we still would have had minute by minnue updates on her trial?
          John Benet Ramsey could have had any skin color and the media would still be looking for her killer too, right?

          May 22, 2014 at 5:24 pm |
        • bostontola

          No. The question in the OP is; would the US do anything if this person was Buddhist.

          May 22, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
  14. grandelusion

    The bibles got screwed up pretty badly. There are many translations and interpretations. There are so many sects of Christianity and Judaism that fight with each other over these differences. Each sect has their own mysterious spiritual connection to God. They know at the deepest spiritual level that they are right and the others are wrong. At best, a small fraction of people have the real connection to God and everyone else has false connections, or they are all false. All these false connections feel completely real, right down to their spiritual bones. How do you distinguish real spiritual connection to God from a false connection? If God just showed up with one message to all people, all this could be cleared up instantly.

    May 22, 2014 at 4:55 pm |
    • lngtrmthnkr

      @Grand, As there are infinite personalities and thousands of different perspectives in the world, there are many different points of view and personal needs and ethenicities. Of course there are different religions to fill different needs. All forms of religion bring people closer to God in their own way according to their personal needs. Some would say religion should be one size fits all, but this is not true or it would be the case. One God responding to billions of points of view and or needs as is the need.My view.

      May 22, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
  15. SciFi

    in America, agnostics have significant levels of education,
    while atheists have relatively low levels of education.
    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-08/asa-lea081511.php

    May 22, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
    • SciFi

      myth-education leads americans atheism

      May 22, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Wow, this is what the 3rd or 4th personality now? You sound too much like salero/thefinisher not to be them. If you were truly an Atheist, you wouldn't be so ignorant of what one is. Stop trolling and get back under your bridge, maybe locate a library on your way and find out where you can register for some English courses to learn sentence structure and how to use a dictionary.

        May 22, 2014 at 4:41 pm |
    • bostontola

      I read the whole article you referenced. The word atheist isn't in the article at all, just less educated and less religious. What are you talking about?

      May 22, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
      • igaftr

        Don't worry about it boston, it is obviously a false statement...I am the proof.

        I am an atheist and an agnostic, and have vast amounts of education...so his entire statement is bogus.

        May 22, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          If you haven't figured it out yet... SciFi is not the sharpest knife in the drawer

          May 22, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
      • SciFi

        wrong linko

        http://books.google.com/books?id=Kw979d4r1LYC&pg=PA35&source=gbs_selected_pages&cad=2#v=onepage&q&f=false

        page 36

        "the relatively low educational level of atheists may come as a surprise"

        May 22, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
        • bostontola

          This data shows atheists lower college education relative to agnostics. Relative to Americans in general there is only 2% points different. Not very compelling, especially since this data doesn't include people without a high school education. Those are the truly lower educated.

          May 22, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
        • Akira

          I really do not know what your point is. This graph proves...what?

          May 22, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • samsstones

          Sci Fi
          There are lies, damn lies and statistics. Everything is relative. A summa cu-m laude graduate at a fundie university in the bible belt may not pass the entrance exam at an Ivy League university. There are online colleges that will give even someone like Topher a degree even a doctorate if you pay enough.

          May 22, 2014 at 4:33 pm |
      • Doris

        @SciFi

        Where in the article does it show the criteria for their differentiation between agnostics and atheists? If I only followed your claim for their findings, I would have to assume they very well may not understand basic differences and similarities.

        May 22, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
    • Doris

      Also, SciFi,

      Where is this study published? You reference an article about a study done by a person who writes for, among other things, family and religious journals, and it's about an upcoming association meeting where it is supposed to be presented – and that was three years ago. Do you have anything on this after it was presented (if it was) or where it was published?

      May 22, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
  16. Sidney Mike

    People who migrate from developing countries are the first to complain about how unhappy they are in the U.S.
    If you are unhappy here, why live here? Go back or migrate elsewhere.

    U.S is a land for the HAPPY! HAPPY!HAPPY!

    May 22, 2014 at 3:28 pm |
    • Zen

      Miserable people are "miserable" wherever they go. They spread their "misery" around.

      May 22, 2014 at 3:42 pm |
    • Stephen

      May God Bless the USA

      May 22, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        Hail Satan

        May 22, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Yes, may Zeus and Odin bring great blessings.

        May 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Yes, may Zeus and Odin bring great blessings. (you didn't specify which god)

        May 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
  17. bostontola

    Someone asserted: "there are 2 types of knowledge: spiritual knowledge and earthly knowledge, the latter gained only through the 5 senses (carnality)."

    What about the spiritual knowledge Jews and Muslims have that Jesus is not God?

    May 22, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
    • new-man

      boston,
      you and most on this board are neither Jew nor Muslim, yet like many of them you all maintain that Jesus is not the Son of God.
      1. It's impossible for God to reveal this knowledge to a person, therefore not spiritual knowledge.

      2. This is carnal/earthly knowledge as evidenced by the fact that this knowledge is generally held by those who are against God and the things of God and those who have an anti-Christ spirit [i.e. against Christ].

      Spiritual knowledge is imparted by revelation from God, and as Jesus said, a house divided against itself cannot stand, thus God could not reveal/impart this knowledge to a person – what knowledge? That Jesus is not the Son of God. IMPOSSIBLE!

      May 22, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
      • bostontola

        So you are saying Jews, Muslims, etc. don't have spiritual knowledge. So they are no different than atheists.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:33 pm |
        • new-man

          absolutely not! that's not what I'm saying.

          Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
          Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being.

          Did you see that – the knowledge that Jesus is the Son of the Living God is one that is imparted by revelation through the Father.
          Therefore, for one to "have the knowledge that Jesus is NOT the Son of God, that knowledge is anti.thesis to revelation knowledge and is therefore not of God, hence not spiritual knowledge.

          May 22, 2014 at 7:06 pm |
      • observer

        new-man

        "It's impossible for God to reveal this knowledge to a person"

        Nonsense. He could announce it at any time.

        "That Jesus is not the Son of God. IMPOSSIBLE!"

        You don't understand what the word "impossible" means. Please use a dictionary.

        May 22, 2014 at 7:12 pm |
  18. Dyslexic doG

    Countries with a high percentage of nonbelievers are among the freest, most stable, best-educated, and healthiest nations on earth. When nations are ranked according to a human-development index, which measures such factors as life expectancy, literacy rates, and educational attainment, the five highest-ranked countries – Norway, Sweden, Australia, Canada, and the Netherlands – all have high degrees of nonbelief. Of the fifty countries at the bottom of the index, all are intensely religious. The nations with the highest homicide rates tend to be more religious; those with the greatest levels of gender equality are the least religious.

    - Doc Vestibule

    May 22, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
    • bostontola

      According to the 2013 World Happiness Report released by Columbia University's Earth Insti'tute, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden are the world's happiest countries

      May 22, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
    • SciFi

      that is a quote from a book -anarchy evolution by grag graffin
      not your doctor

      May 22, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
    • SciFi

      Research on secularity has noted that,
      in America, agnostics have significant levels of education,
      while atheists have relatively low levels of education.
      http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-08/asa-lea081511.php
      Less-educated Americans turning their backs on religion

      "Our study suggests that the less educated are dropping out of the American religious sector, similarly to the way in which they have dropped out of the American labor market," said lead researcher W. Bradford Wilcox, a professor of sociology at the University of Virginia."

      May 22, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
      • SciFi

        science

        May 22, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
      • bostontola

        "dropping out of the American religious sector" is not equivalent to atheist. Agnostics, SBNR are out of the religious sector, both are much more populous than atheists.

        May 22, 2014 at 3:29 pm |
        • SciFi

          quote
          .Countries with a high percentage of nonbelievers are among the freest, most stable, best-educated, and healthiest nations on earth. /quote
          ! nonbelievers are not atheists. they are just people who don't go to church. many of these "nonbelievers" believe in a higher power, great spirit, gods or God.
          ?but you have no problem skipping over that?
          im a nonbeliever but am no way an atheist
          .nor are the atheists the reason we have the freest, most stable, best-educated, and healthiest nations on earth.
          ! that is dumb doG logic!
          most of these nations have a religious foundation – no coutnry has more than 47% atheist. China

          .china.jpaan.czech republic are the populations with highest reported atheists
          united state doesnt make the top 10

          May 22, 2014 at 3:38 pm |
        • bostontola

          OK, that doesn't support your assertion that atheists have low levels of education.

          May 22, 2014 at 3:41 pm |
        • SciFi

          that is what science say:
          research on secularity has noted that,
          in America, agnostics have significant levels of education,
          while atheists have relatively low levels of education.
          http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-08/asa-lea081511.php
          Less-educated Americans turning their backs on religion

          May 22, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
        • bostontola

          I read the whole article you referenced. The word atheist isn't in the article at all, just less educated and less religious. What are you talking about?

          May 22, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
        • Akira

          That study does not disprove the quote by Dr. Greg Graffin.
          (Doc Vestibule quotes GG all the time.)

          You are a non-believer of what?
          Atheist means simply non-belief in gods. Any gods. Look it up.
          This is the context that GG is referring to when he is talking about non-believers.

          There are believers in God who do not attend any formal church or belong to any organized religion. This would include, it would seem, you. If you believe in a higher power, creator, etc, you are, by definition, a believer. You just don't have a particular religion.

          May 22, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
  19. Doris

    Goodness what a mess this SciFi is. It's as if Dala and thefinisher/Salero had a baby, dropped it on its head and then tried to teach it to write.

    May 22, 2014 at 2:42 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      :) Absolute evidence of what a grade 5 education will get you.

      May 22, 2014 at 4:34 pm |
    • Salero21

      YO Dorislera that was so Super-Absurd! You're a PRIME example of what I must remind atheists/evolutionists/cultists/pagans and idolaters that, atheism/evolutionism/cultism/paganism and idolatry are all Absolute, Complete and Total Absurdity, NONSENSE [stupidity]. You have more imaginations by far than Charlie Darwin, Carl Sagan and Neil deGrasse put together. In other words you're deluded; are you smoking something in Colorado? Or are your drinking the wrong medication [moonshine] in the hill country?

      May 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm |
  20. Salero21

    http://youtu.be/6gMsE07gLCg

    May 22, 2014 at 2:33 pm |
    • Salero21

      Follow-up on the CHICKEN-HAWS of previous page.

      May 22, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
    • Akira

      Do you think asking for a letter to let this woman go to be the actions of a Chickenhawk?
      Because as far as I know, no military intervention has been called for. To make my position clear, absolutely no boots to the ground in this particular case, although I see nothing wrong with a letter asking for mercy.

      May 22, 2014 at 2:54 pm |
      • Salero21

        Oh oh Akira the PRIMA DONNA!

        I don't read most of your posts, I don't know what you're talking about. Neither had you in mind at all, when posting these videos and my comments about the CHICKEN-HAWKS. So I don't know how or why you feel alluded to either. Write all the letters you want, but don't expect me to believe you really care, and that is nothing more than a show off of false piety. And the reason I don't believe you is because, atheists are Compulsive pathetic and pathological LIARS and extreme hypocrites. Especially in these type of issues.

        May 22, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
        • Akira

          I wasn't referring to myself writing the letter, but of the request for Mr. Kerry to do so.

          My questions were sincerely asked; if you can't answer, that's fine.

          May 22, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
        • Salero21

          What part of "I don't know what you're talking about" don't you understand?

          I don't spend hours of every day here (have better things to do). Are you that dense? The Videos do not mention Secretary of State Kerry, if he is the Kerry you're talking about (I don't know another). No he is not a CHICKEN-HAWK you may be.

          Do I have to tell you again that I don't believe you? If he [Kerry] is asking people to write letters, you go ahead and do it and stop being a hypocrite and a Compulsive Liar.

          May 22, 2014 at 7:48 pm |
        • Akira

          Oh, I see the misunderstanding; I wasn't referring to the video. I didn't watch it.
          What I asked was, "Do you think asking for a letter to let this woman go to be the actions of a Chickenhawk?"
          Because that is what was being asked of Mr. Kerry initially; and to reiterate, I have not heard talk of military intervention.
          Do you consider any intervention, even something as innocuous as a letter from our SOS, to be Chickenhawk behavior?

          May 22, 2014 at 8:23 pm |
        • Akira

          And to clarify I minor point, the letter was to be from Mr. Kerry to the Government of Sudan.

          May 22, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
        • Salero21

          @ Akira,

          In the previous page (4) I posted another good Video on the subject, also my definition of a chicken-hawk which is similar to that of among others, Jesse Ventura and Ron Paul. I also posted a definition of SEOSEC there and in the article last week about the situation in Nigeria with the Boko Haran group, I can't find the article now. For an expanded good article (IMVHO) on this subject matter Wikipedia has a good one. Just Google chicken haw in both Wikipedia and YouTube.

          NO any Diplomatic, civil, Letters, approaches, acts etc. by Kerry or whoever IS NOT a chicken-hawk in any shape or form.

          A CHICKEN-HAWK is someone who chicken out when his military service was needed, required, back in the days when he could/should/ought but wouldn't. And now, they're usually the First who want to send a Military made-entirely of SEOSEC's to battles/wars here, there and everywhere. They were chickens before and NOW they're all so Hawkish.

          May 23, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
        • Salero21

          Should say above instead: A military made-up entirely of... Sorry for the mistype!

          OmG THE GRAMMAR GESTAPO OF THE INTERNET is going to get me again for that.

          May 23, 2014 at 12:05 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.