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Monday, May 22, 2006

Christian Response to the Oregon University Cartoons Defaming Jesus

In a unified burst of outrage, Christians around the world are staging violent protests over the depictions of Jesus in a University of Oregon student publication. There is violence in the streets, burning, looting, and some people have already been beaten nearly to death.

“This outrage cannot be tolerated!” said one Christian while waving a sign that read “Bomb UO! Their blood is on their hands!”

“It’s time to show those heathens what it means to insult our Lord!” said another Christian who had his six-year-old daughter helping him hold a very large that read “If you think 9/11 was bas just wait until you see what’s coming!”

Other signs and shouted slogans included “The apocalypse is now, and we are the tools of God’s wrath!” “Death to everyone at UO!” “Burn them now and for eternity!” “Death to all pagans!” “Hell awaits you!” and, my favorite, “Think Muslim terrorism is bad? You aint seen nothing yet!”

Acts of violence and vandalism were slowed slightly because the rioters would frequently stop and scream “Praise Jesus!” with a wild look in their eyes and broad geatures to emphasize it.

All of this outrage has been sparked by the publication of cartons depicting Jesus as a homosexual, terrorist, and a fraud in a UO student publication.

University of Oregon President Dave Frohnmayer had this to say. “I understand the outrage of Christians at the publication of these cartoons. I have ordered all remaining copies of the Insurgent rounded up for disposal and the staff of that publication are currently being reprimanded. There may be expulsions.”

The French Ambassador said “The French government does not blame the Christians for the violence in our streets. We understand that they are disenfranchised and that such outrage to such horrible pictures is only natural to people in their situation.” He also swore that France would “do everything possible to satisfy the demands of the Christian rioters.”

A UN spokesman declared “These pictures of Jesus are not acceptable. Such an attack on the founder of the world’s largest religion cannot be tolerated. The Un wishes to express it’s sympathies to the Christians and we are currently looking at ways to satisfy their demands and stop the violence.”

Okay, now for the real scoop. It has been months since these cartoons were published, they are known about pretty much everywhere in the world now, and there has been absolutely no violence, rioting, or other criminal acts of intimidation engaged in by the Christian community. Letters have been written, a few small, peaceful protests have been staged, and that’s about it.

The first portion of this article is not actually fiction though. Simply replace every instance of the words “Christian” and “Jesus” with “Muslim” and “Mohammad”, switch the University of Oregon for Denmark and you have what actually happened when Muslims faced the same situation. The difference in conduct between the followers of Jesus and the followers of Mohammad is as different as night and day.

When I look at individuals and groups of people I look to their actions to see if they are acting on Godly or demonic impulses. Godly impulses are love, patience, peace, generosity, and so forth. Demonic impulses are violence, murder, hatred, and other basic evils. My opinion of people is shaped largely by the spiritual influences I see coming through their actions. It is such actions that cause me to have a very high regard for most Christians, and a very low regard for most Muslims. I have called Allah a demon in the past, and this position is based on the actions of his followers.

Truth be told, we are very unlikely to see how the global community would react if Christians started acting like Muslims, but I suspect we would not be treated with such generosity. Rather, I suspect we would be universally denounced, and our religion might even get banned in some countries.

So, where do I stand on this whole UO cartoon thing? My stance is that I expect it because it is simply more of the same old typical assaults on my religion that are so common that I have a hard time understanding how these cartoons are even able to draw attention. With “art” like a cross floating in a jar of urine, Mary mother of God covered in elephant dung, and innumerable other foul and degrading depictions of Christianity flooding the art world I have grown rather numb to it. Assaulting Christianity seems to be a popular activity among certain groups, and artists are one of those groups. Truth be told, I fully expect this trend to grow and become so common it may even become fashionable in the mainstream. I wonder how long until we see models walking down the runway wearing crowns of thorns with the thorns shaped to look like devil horns. I wonder how long until speaking about Christian morals starts getting banned as hate speech in some countries. Not long I suspect.

30 Comments:

  • "I have called Allah a demon in the past, and this position is based on the actions of his followers."

    I think you mean, "based on the actions of SOME of Allah's followers."

    And therein lies the problem with your criticism of Islam.

    We're talking relative handfuls of misbehaving muslims (in comparison to total numbers of muslims) - a pretty paltry minority, I'd guess. And, as you are well aware, we have a minority of misbehaving christians in the world, too.

    Is it fair to blame Christians for the actions of the few? No. Nor is it fair to blame Muslims at large, which is what you're doing.

    Are there a larger minority number of muslims misbehaving as compared to Christians? Perhaps. An anectdotal look at things would suggest so.

    But EVEN If we have a larger minority number of misbehaving muslims (as compared to Christians), it is still a minority. A vast minority, I'd suggest.

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 9:59 AM  

  • Yes, Daniel, blindly following the teachings of a religion can cause harm. Tell us something we didn’t know.

    By Anonymous cjb, at 1:59 PM  

  • Daniel, while those rioters and anyone who engaged in violence over the cartoons were totally out of order in their behaviour, they are only a small minority of Muslims. Sure, they're a really bad minority but they're using their religion and taking elements of it, twisting it to support their views and generally giving the religion a bad reputation.

    Not all Christians are intolerant, bigotted, American Isolationists with screwed up views of the world brought about from the way they were indoctrinated from birth. Some of them are, while a lot of them are nice friendly folk who don't go ga-ga for God. Others seem to exist just to spread hate, fear and lies about other groups in society so as to keep their perceived position of power in society.

    You know you'd love to go on a little riot about South Park or something, go on, admit it.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 3:00 PM  

  • DP76,

    "You know you'd love to go on a little riot about South Park or something, go on, admit it."

    South Park? I love that show! It is equal opportunity mockery, and everyone gets it good. I might be offended if Christianity were all it mocked, but so far it has a great track record for assaulting every religion in a humorous way.

    Surprised? Sre I take my religion very seriously, but I am comfortable enough wit my beliefs that the mockery of others doesn;t really affect me much.

    Dan T & DP76,

    You are assumin gthat the rioters represent a minority of Muslims, the problem is that every scientific and every casual survey conducted shows the majority of Muslims sympathizing and supporting the rioters and terrorists even if they are not personally involved. This majority support makes them just as liable in my opinion because they are the prime enablers even if they do not act out personally. Also, Majority support for misbehavior is a BAD thing no matter how you try to parse it.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 5:29 PM  

  • I must apologize for my lack of commenting on your works. Just because I don't comment doesn't mean I don't read. You've written some good stuff, Daniel.

    I tend to have the same take on this issue. We Christians have almost become used to our religion being attacked and defamed. We've grown accustomed to it. We don't go rioting and calling for the heads of those responsible for those reasons.

    I think that the difference between the two worlds is the level of civilization, not necessarily the religions themselves. Most of the rioters and fanatics (but not all by a long shot) are inundated with the Islamic fundamentalism that breeds such displays and unrest. As the Middle East becomes more modernized, this type of behavior will begin to moderate and then die out. It's just surviving in the meantime that's the trick.

    By Blogger Nightcrawler, at 10:44 PM  

  • "When I look at individuals and groups of people I look to their actions to see if they are acting on Godly or demonic impulses. Godly impulses are love, patience, peace, generosity, and so forth. Demonic impulses are violence, murder, hatred, and other basic evils."

    Therefore, by your very definition Christianity, according to the biblical texts, and what is "godly" is a paradox -- being both godly and demonic. Likewise, God, well the god of the Christians, desires both godly and demonic impulses.

    "Truth be told, we are very unlikely to see how the global community would react if Christians started acting like Muslims, but I suspect we would not be treated with such generosity. Rather, I suspect we would be universally denounced, and our religion might even get banned in some countries."

    Like Christianity has attempted to do in the past with other religiosities? Hmm... the pendulum swings both ways, does it not? Or is it "what goes around, comes around".. Or perhaps it is "an eye for an eye"... "Treat others as you wish to be treated"..

    "Truth be told, I fully expect this trend to grow and become so common it may even become fashionable in the mainstream. I wonder how long until we see models walking down the runway wearing crowns of thorns with the thorns shaped to look like devil horns. I wonder how long until speaking about Christian morals starts getting banned as hate speech in some countries. Not long I suspect."

    Again as Christians have done with other religiosities in the past?

    Christianity is not alone in being depicted in tasteless and degrading forms. Likewise, Christianity and Christians are not without guilt from doing the same to others. In this case, there is definitely "nothing new under the sun".

    So, welcome and enjoy it while it lasts, because next year it will be an entirely different set of threats to Christianity, Christians, and whatever else it is you feel are being threatened. Which is good for you it will provide an endless supply of subjects for you to expect to be accommodated for.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:09 AM  

  • So Daniel, I guess based on your own arguments against Islam, you can conclude the same on your religion right? Since you seem to think your logic is infallible. You shall know a man by his fruits or whatever you said.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:26 AM  

  • Anonymous, don't mention fruits to Daniel as he has none. Fruits are dirty and promiscuous and spread disease, are far more likely to have mental problems than vegetables and are incapable of forming a succcessful relationship with other fruits.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 12:02 PM  

  • Danny boy said - scientific and every casual survey conducted ....

    Which surveys and SCIENTIFIC EXPERIMENTS have been done to prove that common muslims support terrorist attacks?

    HA HA HA, your insane claims only bring down your credibility as an insightful thinker. Muslims all around us reject terrorist attacks and will tell you that it's not Islamically supported.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:52 PM  

  • "Muslims all around us reject terrorist attacks and will tell you that it's not Islamically supported."

    Islam does support the destruction of non-Muslims. It is part of Islamic law afterall. Here in America though, the media tends not to let you know that. Of course, Christianity has similar practices in the Bible. Judaism does as well. No one pays attention to these little details and they are rarely mentioned by the media or by those who feel they aren't being properly accommodated in their Christianity, Islam or Judaism. The wonders of a PC world or pablum for the masses?

    A couple of recommended readings:

    The Myth of Islamic Tolerance: How Islamic Law treats non-Muslims, edited by Robert Spence.

    and:

    The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), by Robert Spence.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:22 AM  

  • Due to the number of different anonomys posters I shall make this respons non-specific.

    "Therefore, by your very definition Christianity, according to the biblical texts, and what is "godly" is a paradox -- being both godly and demonic. Likewise, God, well the god of the Christians, desires both godly and demonic impulses."

    Simply false as any thorough reading of the Bible shows. There are absolutely no contradictions in the Bible, unlike the holy texts of certain other religions I could name.

    "Like Christianity has attempted to do in the past with other religiosities?"

    Yep, exactly like that. only not for religious reasons. There are reports comin gout oof England a the current laws regarding defamatory speach are actually being used to threaten Christian ministers into not speaking about Christian moraliy because it is considered by some to be defamatory to certain groups, like homosexuals. Religion will not be the stifling influence. Rather, it will be secular pluralism that demands tolerance of everything as long as it criticizes nothing.

    "So Daniel, I guess based on your own arguments against Islam, you can conclude the same on your religion right?"

    Problem: The majority of Christians actively denounce anyone who uses the Bible for an end that is contradictory to the teachings and actions of Jesus Christ. The Muslim terrorists and rioters, however, are actually copying the actions and teachings of Mohammad, which is why it is so well accepted.

    "Which surveys and SCIENTIFIC EXPERIMENTS have been done to prove that common muslims support terrorist attacks?"

    I said scientific SURVEYS, whic as you should know, provided you are not an ignoramus, are statistical surveys done following strict parameters with a known margin of error, NOT laboratory experiments. Cover yourself up, your ignorance is showing.

    "Islam does support the destruction of non-Muslims. It is part of Islamic law afterall. Here in America though, the media tends not to let you know that. Of course, Christianity has similar practices in the Bible. Judaism does as well."

    True on all counts. The Christianity/Judaism example is the in the Old Testament when God commanded that the Hebrews wipe out all of the inhabitants of Caana when the conquored it in order to keep their pagen influences out of the Jewish population. The Hebrews did not do this and the result was a great deal of corruption of jewish culture, most notably the way idolatry actually became the dominant form of religion for a few hundred years following Solomon, but before the Babylonian exile. No other examples come to mind. However, there are numerous examples of patience, charity,m and forgivenes of one's enemies, as well as a commandment, in the New Testament, to go so far as to love them. This brief summary is insufficent as an explanation of anything, for a greater understanding I reccommend reading the Bible directly.

    DP76,

    Funny! I like the way you used the double meanings of innocent words.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 10:22 AM  

  • "Simply false as any thorough reading of the Bible shows. There are absolutely no contradictions in the Bible, unlike the holy texts of certain other religions I could name."

    Yeah, only if you can't read. Regardless, our conversation was not about contradictions but the paradox created by your definition of godly and demonic. I doubt you would name those religions, you very rarely name anything. Instead you rely upon things like "Scientific Surveys" without actually providing the source.

    "Yep, exactly like that. only not for religious reasons. There are reports comin gout oof England a the current laws regarding defamatory speach ... Religion will not be the stifling influence. Rather, it will be secular pluralism that demands tolerance of everything as long as it criticizes nothing."

    Please provide the laws, their tracts, codification, etc.

    Here is an example of good Christian morality that demonstrates the demonic nature of the christian god:

    :: If noone hears the woman scream, its not rape (Deuteronomy 22:23-24)

    :: If a man rapes a woman, he pays 50 silver pieces to her father and then marries her (Deuteronomy 22:28-29)

    And let us not forget all the glorious permissions for rape of the enemy's virgin daughters -- only after you have slain the mothers, sons, fathers and other married women first.

    And how about the morality of pitting father against son and mother against daughter and so on?

    And a god who demonstrates morality by laying out one's dead mother upon the ground and filling her mouth with feces. Good old fashioned traditional conservative morality for you.

    I like to use both the New Testament and Old Testament when discussing christian morality, that way the good christians can't say that it doesn't apply to them.

    So, what you are saying with the last sentence is that you have the right to complain because people are badmouthing and stifling christianity but think christianity shouldn't be stifled for badmouthing and stifling others (such as homosexuals)? Still needing more accommodation? You don't have enough as it is?

    "Problem: The majority of Christians actively denounce anyone who uses the Bible ... which is why it is so well accepted."

    Problem, the majority of Christians are absolutely clueless to the history of Christianity and biblical revision. So, what you are saying is that when Jesus says:

    Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. (Luke 12:51-2)

    Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (Matthew 10:34)

    He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. (Luke 22:36)

    And then there are the countless Old Testament references to killing non-believers (Islam anyone?), those who do not obey the law of God, those who do not obey their mothers or fathers, and so on. And before you say that Jesus came to eradicate the OT laws, he says specifically:

    Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest part or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place." (Matthew 5:17)

    All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for refutation, for correction, and for training in righteousness... (2 Timothy 3:16)

    Know this first of all, that there is no prophecy of scripture that is a matter of personal interpretation, for no prophecy ever came through human will; but rather human beings moved by the holy Spirit spoke under the influence of God. (2 Peter 20-21)

    Whoever curses father or mother shall die (Mark 7:10) According to OT law.

    He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. (Matthew 15:4-7) Again according to OT law.

    Peter says that all slaves should “be subject to [their] masters with all fear,” to the bad and cruel as well as the “good and gentle.” This is merely an echo of the same slavery commands in the Old Testament. 1 Peter 2:18

    Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law" (John7:19) and “For the law was given by Moses,...(John 1:17)

    ...the scripture cannot be broken. --Jesus Christ, John 10:35

    "I said scientific SURVEYS, whic as you should know ... NOT laboratory experiments. Cover yourself up, your ignorance is showing."

    You still have not provided the source which is what was being asked for.

    "True on all counts. The Christianity/Judaism example is the in the Old Testament when God ... No other examples come to mind. However, there are numerous examples of patience, charity,m and forgivenes of one's enemies, as well as a commandment, in the New Testament, to go so far as to love them ... I reccommend reading the Bible directly."

    Simply because no other examples come to mind does not mean that you actually know what you are talking about. That just means you don't have the memory (presence of mind? knowledge base? experience? understanding? insert any of these) to retain the Christian examples of the exact same intolerance and practices.

    By Anonymous Bored, at 11:12 AM  

  • "Simply false as any thorough reading of the Bible shows. There are absolutely no contradictions in the Bible, unlike the holy texts of certain other religions I could name."

    Blind faith! Heh!

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 12:36 PM  

  • Bored,

    Do not give false quotes to someone who has a Bible in almost every room of his house.

    "If noone hears the woman scream, its not rape (Deuteronomy 22:23-24)"

    The actual textof the verse you are referencing has nothing to do with rape at all. It is Jewish law regarding the punishment of adultery. It reads "If a man is found lying with a woman married to a husband, then both of them shall die - the man that lay with the woman, and the woman; so you shall put away the evil from Israel.
    If a young woman who is a virgin is betrthoed to a husband, and a man finds her in the city and lies with her"

    As you can see, what you claim and what the Bible actually says are not remotely the same. What you were trying to reference was Dueteronoomy 22:25-26 where it says that if a woman is raped she is blamelss and that if she is married or betrothed the man shall be put to death. It is the only portion that says anything about screaming, where it actually says that if no one could hear her scream she is still blameless.

    " If a man rapes a woman, he pays 50 silver pieces to her father and then marries her (Deuteronomy 22:28-29)"

    Again, you have edited it. the first sentence ssys "If a man rapes a woman who is a virgin". It was standard practice in those days that if a man took a woman's virginity, regardless of the means he was forcd to marry her and he could not divorce her. Why? Because no other man woud have her. So a man had better be careful if were to go after a woman for sex, because he was gonna wind up dead or married to her with no way out. Not to mention that 50 silver was far more than the standard dowry. He is also never allowed to divorce her, and 50 peices of silver was a small fortune in those days. Under Jewish law this was a stiff penalty. Of course, ynder your editing and taken out of context it is quite posible to make things look like they are a way they are not.

    "Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. (Luke 12:51-2)
    Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (Matthew 10:34)
    He that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. (Luke 22:36)"

    And taken out of context, meanin everything in front of and behind these verses that leads up to and explains them after they look like an advocation of violence. However, as soon as you place them in the Bible with the preceeding and following verses you see that they are not. The first verse is referencing the spiritual division that comes about as members of a household come to Jesus and others do not. A phenomenon we have all seen. The second verse, when taken in context is part of a statement regarding how people will be persecuted fo following Jesus and that some will be forced to choose between him and life. And the final was part of of the events leading up to Jesus' arrest on the mount of olives, so His disciples could defend themselves if they needed to where, oddly enough, Jesus actually rebuked Peter for actually puttin one of the 2 swords they had to use and healed the injured man on the spot.

    You have gone through a list of verses where you either quote out of context, misquote entirely, and edit the actual verses to make the contradictions and paradoxes that you wish were there appear. I shall not bother to go into the others at this since I believe I have already demonstrated your deception quite thoroughly.

    Such things may pull the wool over the eyes of the uninformed, but doing so here will only get you exposed as a liar.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 1:20 PM  

  • How do you like it when people take the bible out of context Daniel?

    Simply false as any thorough reading of the Bible shows. There are absolutely no contradictions in the Bible...
    Actually Christian churches admitted to thousands. Go check online, you will find out. On top of this, God didnt reveal the gospel right the first time?! He had to it hundreds of times and MAN had to pick his four best?

    The majority of Christians actively denounce anyone who uses the Bible for an end that is contradictory to the teachings and actions of Jesus Christ. The Muslim terrorists and rioters, however, are actually copying the actions and teachings of Mohammad, which is why it is so well accepted.

    Actually terrorists are not copying Muhammad, and their actions are widely UNACCEPTED. If it were accepted Muslims would have been killing random people around the world IN ALL PARTS OF THE WORLD FOR THE PAST 1400 YRS if it was accepted and what you were saying is true.

    Once again with the survey, you have no proof. You're a simple minded liar and you need to educate yourself and get out of your box.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:51 PM  

  • "Do not give false quotes to someone who has a Bible in almost every room of his house."

    Safety precaution? I didn't give false quotes, perhaps it is a matter of which translation/version we are using...

    "As you can see, what you claim and what the Bible actually says are not remotely the same. What you were trying to reference was Dueteronoomy 22:25-26 where it says that if a woman is raped she is blamelss and that if she is married or betrothed the man shall be put to death. It is the only portion that says anything about screaming, where it actually says that if no one could hear her scream she is still blameless."

    Nope, NAB version, Deuteronomy 22: 23-24. She is only blameless if she screams. This is dependent upon the fact that she is within city limits and therefore presumably could be heard if she screamed. If she is raped outside the city limits (ie "in the fields") then the man alone is held accountable and the woman is then, and only then, entirely blameless. I will not accommodate your BS, sorry. Her lack of guilt rests solely upon whether she screams and her screams can be heard, not upon the benign relations of her diety.

    "Again, you have edited it. the first sentence ssys "If a man rapes a woman who is a virgin". It was standard practice in those days that if a man took a woman's virginity, regardless of the means he was forcd to marry her and he could not divorce her. Why? Because no other man woud have her."

    Yes they are paraphrased. Why? Because I would assume you would have had a Bible handy. Which I was correct in assuming as apparently you have one in every room of your house. It doesn't matter how you justify it by the fact that she was a virgin or not. The value of her rape is 50 silver pieces and marriage, that is all, according to the morality of your god. That is unacceptable and frankly quite disgusting. But, hey, we must fight the good fight and make sure those good "christian morals" don't get displaced.

    "So a man had better be careful if were to go after a woman for sex, because he was gonna wind up dead or married to her with no way out. Not to mention that 50 silver was far more than the standard dowry."

    We're not talking dowry. We're talking rape. RAPE. Not consensual marriage or sex. Not arranged marriages. RAPE. You see in context, with the previous passages referencing rape, there is no reason to assume that this passage alone refers to consensual marriage or sex solely or even additionally.

    "The first verse is referencing the spiritual division that comes about as members of a household come to Jesus and others do not."

    No it is not. I do believe that I quoted the passage that says there is no room for interpretation in the scripture, right? The preceding verses reflect actual physical, not spiritual, conflict including reference to "set fire to the earth". It is destruction, conflict, and battle (slaves vs. masters, children vs. parents, believers vs. nonbelievers). Nonbelievers, as I also quoted I believe, are afforded no protection and are enemies for which death is permissable (or perhaps the only permissable) solution.

    "You have gone through a list of verses where you either quote out of context, misquote entirely, and edit the actual verses to make the contradictions and paradoxes that you wish were there appear. I shall not bother to go into the others at this since I believe I have already demonstrated your deception quite thoroughly."

    I've given the reason for not quoting exactly. If we are both familiar with the sources then there is no need for me to quote exactly in an informal discussion. My quotes were also not taken out of context, you simply prefer to interpret (not allowed according to the Bible) them in a much more passive and permissable light. If you think your sole argument is commendable for the above reasons alone than you are quite foolish and I would assume that you deal more with children and less-than-intellectual types generally as opposed to those who would actually call you on your nonsense.

    "Such things may pull the wool over the eyes of the uninformed, but doing so here will only get you exposed as a liar."

    Which is exactly what many have said to you so far. Where is the quote from the "Scientific Surveys" source and all? Where are the law tracts, codes, anything that you mentioned from Great Britain or the UK or wherever? You see, by trying to reverse the arguments put to you, you have simply demonstrated once again the complete and total lack of weight your arguments bear.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:21 PM  

  • How old is The Bible anyway? How old is the Koran?

    It is the work of man, made in an era that is totally alien to modern culture. The position of the Bible on all society as a whole is radically different to the modern world. I have no doubt it is a very good read and a lot of people have a fondness for it but it is, at the end of the day, a book. True faith should not need a book to tell you how to live your life. A book that is not upgraded to reflect the ever-changing world. This is why I dislike using any book, be it the Bible or the Koran to tell people how to live their lives. It's a book! People are a hell of a lot more complicated than anything in an ancient book. Sure, it can be used as a guide for idealised moral behaviour and I have no problem with these books being used in that way. But all I seem to see around the world today is various groups of people using their 'One True God' and holy books to 'prove' that their views about the world are correct and all other opinions are invalid.

    It offends me.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 3:25 PM  

  • "But all I seem to see around the world today is various groups of people using their 'One True God' and holy books to 'prove' that their views about the world are correct and all other opinions are invalid."

    That is the current incarnation of monotheism for you.

    "It offends me."

    It offends a lot of people. In good fashion though, christians are offended by the fact that christianity is offensive to so many people.

    By Anonymous Bored, at 3:39 PM  

  • Damn this current incarnation of monotheism! Let's just focus on being kind, charitable and friendly, doing to others as we would have done to ourselves and loving our neighbours. Except the ones who have noisy parties late at night and keep us awake.

    I thought the human race had evolved from all this mental slavery. Can we get to the Star Trek kind of future where science has enlightened us? Can we? Please?

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 10:02 AM  

  • Quran was completed in 632. The bible was basically a text compiled of the Torah and four gospels chosen out of hundreds which all give different information about who Jesus was and what he did. This text is one that has 4 different gospels over different times with different renditions of Jesus' story and sayings.

    Quran is still in it's original form in different languages (same content)

    Of course a text should tell people how to live life because if its from God, like a parent knows whats best for their child, God knows whats best for His Creation.

    If the book is really that valid, the universal commandments in it should be universal across all times.

    I dont know why people say religion is mental slavery. It doesnt tell you how to think, it restricts harmful actions; actions that are harmful to the self and to society. It doesnt ask of anything unrealistic.

    There is no compulsion in religion. The books are there for you to read and reflect and either accept or reject. If it's from God, you accept it fully.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:41 PM  

  • Anon: "There is no compulsion in religion. The books are there for you to read and reflect and either accept or reject. If it's from God, you accept it fully."

    In a sensible religious person that is true. But unfortunately there are a lot of noisy non-sensible types who use religion as a meams to an end. It's these people I have a problem with, the ones who preach that non-believers are living in sin and want to keep the world in a way that fits in with their view of it. I have a problem with the whole "God said it so it must be true" as God, if She/He exists, is a concept and doesn't have the fingers needed to write a book. Human beings writing as a ghost writer for God have too much power and power corrupts.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 3:20 PM  

  • Well what about this?
    When the angel speaks to man, man relates it and his companions write it? Or simple that the angel speaks God's word verbatim to man and he writes it?
    Dont believers say that the commandments were written by God's fingers (ie with his power, directly by Him?)
    When it comes to ghostwriters, I call to mind the writers of the gospel. No one knows who Mark, Matt, Luke and John are. They are names applied to the gospel. There are other gospels like the gospel of barnabas with complete different views that say Jesus ascended and the likeness was put on another man and THAT person was crucified.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:35 PM  

  • Various,

    "How old is The Bible anyway? How old is the Koran?"
    "Quran was completed in 632."

    The Bible in it's comiled form is around 1,700 years old. However, the very first four Books, he Torah, were written at least 3,000 years ago by Moses. I could pinpoint both dates, but I am sleepy and too lazy to look it up right now. The rest of the Old Testament is a history recorded by witnesses and historians. The four Gospels of the New Testament are the only ones written by eyewitnesses to the life of Jesus Christ. Every other so-called "gospel" was written no less than 100 years after Christ was ressurected by men who never knew Him or witnessed a single one of His works. These are the numerous other Gospels that Muslim Anonomys is referring to, also known as the Gnostic gospels. The Coptic Church has kept every one of these books and considers them all Holy, and they are a part of their Bible, which is known as a Gnostic Bible. These books, which were not considered to be reliable even in their own day, were not included in the Bible because of their known history and acknowledged unreliability oof the writers. For example, the so-called Gospel of Thomas was written decades after Thomas died, and yet the writer chose to masquerade as Thomas for the writing of this book. Also, if you read these heresies you will find them to be in conflict not only with the Bible, but with each other and even within themselves. They truly are ridiculous. Talking of Lions being made holy if men eat them and wacky stuff like that.

    As for the Koran, it was an oral tradition, memorized, not written down. However, it was recorded peicemeal by various followers of Mohammad wo di dnot rust thier wn memories. After the Death of mOhammad a man was charged with collecting up these scraps and compiling them into a single book, which became the Koran we know today. Whether it truly contains everything Mohammad was having people memorize is, in truth, both unkown and unverifiable.

    "Let's just focus on being kind, charitable and friendly, doing to others as we would have done to ourselves and loving our neighbours."

    I have no problem with this. someone very important commanded us to do this in fact. now who was it . . . OH YEAH! Jesus! By the way, you left out loving your enemies.

    "I dont know why people say religion is mental slavery. It doesnt tell you how to think, it restricts harmful actions; actions that are harmful to the self and to society. It doesnt ask of anything unrealistic."

    While we are quite opposed in our religions, We can at least agree on this.

    "Well what about this?
    When the angel speaks to man, man relates it and his companions write it? Or simple that the angel speaks God's word verbatim to man and he writes it?"

    I am very curious, Joseph Smith claimed that an angel spoke to him, and gave him a set of Golden plates which contained the entire Book of Mormon. The angel he claims to have spoken to made no mention of the Koran or Mohammad, and he says that this Angel called the Book of Mormon the completion of the word of God. What is your take on this?

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 7:42 PM  

  • The Quran was written down when it was being revealed to Prophet Muhammad from Angel Gabriel. It was also committed to memory, along with being written down at the time of revelation. When it came to the compilation only a few years after Prophet Muhammad's death, the written documents were collected, and also the ones memorized by 10's and hundreds of ppl verbatim, the recitations had to be verified by others that it in fact is word for word true.

    About the book of Mormon, people still claim they see angels today, it doesnt make their revelations true. For a revelation to be accepted as one truly from God, it at least has to meet some criteria of being from God. It should confirm and complete what was sent before it, as whenever Jesus spoke he said I come to confirm what was before me, and not to bring you something new. Prophet Muhammad said the same.

    Regarding the gospels, it is a well known fact by Christian scholars that the gospels were written years after Jesus' "ascension" (which even Muslims believe in). John 0090, Mark 70, Luke 70-80, Matt 80, even these dates are still debated by scholars. Luke himself said in so many word 'since every one was offering their record of jesus, i thought i'd write one too, and this all based on oral tradition...', never mentioning, you may note, that he was inspired by God.
    1Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled[a] among us, 2just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. 3Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.

    Daniel, you would do well not to speak on topics concerning Islam since you have done no academic research or study of it, as it shows. As for me, I have studied Jesus from the Christian perspective and the compilation of their texts. You may interested to know the Pastors and Christian scholars admit that there is not such thing as the Trinity mentioned by Jesus. Therefore, the one to come after Jesus as he mentioned at the last supper, was clearly not a Holy Spirit. That is something interjected.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:11 PM  

  • FOR THOSE WHO KEEP SAYING ISLAM IS A RELIGION THAT TELLS PPL TO FIGHT ALL THE TIME, LOOK AT THIS TIMELINE. Note that the first revelation is when the Prophet is 40 and he migrates away from Makkah and goes back and still doesnt fight until 13 YEARS AFTER Angel Gabriel came to him:

    http://www.islam.com/chronology.htm

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:28 PM  

  • and the wars were in self defense.

    What are your rebuttles to that Daniel? Obviously if the goal in this religion is to kill non muslims why would they wait til Muhammad is such an old man? why not in the outset? because the religion doesnt say to kill non muslims, it says to defend urself.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:30 PM  

  • In ALL this, did you ever provide any sources to back your claim that Muslims by and large support terrorism, Daniel?

    What I found in a casual search was a mixed bag, some support for terrorism in some Muslim countries, less in others.

    Here's one source:

    http://pewglobal.org/reports/display.php?ReportID=248

    And I'm curious: If a poll were done here in the US, do you suppose a majority of Christians would support the destruction of hundreds of thousands of men, women and children in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Or for the fire bombings of civilians in Dresden?

    I suspect so.

    After all, one man's support for terrorism is another's support for freedom fighters, right?

    By Blogger Dan Trabue, at 10:22 PM  

  • Dan T sums it up rather well with "one man's support for terrorism is another's support for freedom fighters, right? "

    For example, the IRA, Nelson Mandela and the ANC, Hamas, etc. And even Bush's America in Iraq. All thought they were fighting for freedom and all have been perceived as both terrorists and freedom fighters. It's a great bit moral grey area... except that in my eyes there's no excuse for the murder of innocents, no matter what you believe your particular God is saying to you.

    By Blogger DanProject76, at 12:45 PM  

  • What about this "terrorist? freedom fighter? suicide bomber?" all synonyms for unjustified murderers....
    and thats coming from a Muslim.

    I say they're murderers because they kill innocent people and that is forbidden.

    Those who this an Islamic war is a free-for-all may be interested to note that wikipedia quotes:

    From the Qur'an:

    Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors. - Quran 2:190
    If any one slew a person - unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land - it would be as if he slew the whole people. - Quran 5:32
    So when the sacred months (of cease-fire) have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. And if one of the idolaters seek protection from you, grant him protection till he hears the word of Allah, then make him attain his place of safety; this is because they are a people who do not know. Quran 9:5-6 (Idolaters referred to in this verse is group among Idolaters in Mecca who had made an agreement of mutual protection with Muslims and then later conspired against Muslims, thus breaking the agreement.)
    But if the enemy incline towards peace, then you (also) incline towards peace, and trust in Allah: for He is One that hears and knows (all things). Quran 8:61
    O ye who believe! when ye meet the Unbelievers in war, never turn your backs to them. Qur'an 8:15
    And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevails justice and faith in Allah altogether and everywhere. But if they cease, verily Allah doth see all that they do. Qur'an 8:39
    From the hadith:

    "You are neither hard-hearted nor of fierce character, nor one who shouts in the markets. You do not return evil for evil, but excuse and forgive." - Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 362
    "Do not kill any old person, any child or any woman" (Abu Dawud).
    "Do not kill the monks in monasteries" or "Do not kill the people who are sitting in places of worship" (Musnad of Ibn Hanbal).

    Speech by Abu Bakr, Mohammed's closest friend and first successor, to an Islamic army set out for Syria: "Stop, O people, that I may give you ten rules for your guidance in the battlefield. Do not commit treachery or deviate from the right path. You must not mutilate dead bodies. Neither kill a child, nor a woman, nor an aged man. Bring no harm to the trees, nor burn them with fire, especially those which are fruitful. Slay not any of the enemy's flock, save for your food. You are likely to pass by people who have devoted their lives to monastic services; leave them alone."

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:21 PM  

  • Muslim Anonomys,

    "You may interested to know the Pastors and Christian scholars admit that there is not such thing as the Trinity mentioned by Jesus. Therefore, the one to come after Jesus as he mentioned at the last supper, was clearly not a Holy Spirit. That is something interjected."

    Utterly false. You cannot reconciole your assertion with the events in the upper room when the Spirit of the Lord decended on the assebled believers in the form of a flame and gave them the Baptism of the Spirit. While Jesus never did use the words Holy Trinity, He spoke frequently of God in terms of the Father (God) the Son (himself), and the Spirit (The Holy Spirit). And do not forget that when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist "The Spirit of the Lord descended upopn HIm like a dove and a voice from Heaven declared 'This is my Son, in whom I am well pleased'" Which, since it is recorded in the gospels that Muslims consider to be trustworthy, is incontivertible proof that God exists as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit as we are shown them all in the same place at the same time. Naturally, this singular event is also sufficient to destroy any argument that Jesus is actually not the Son of God, but merely a prophet.

    "About the book of Mormon, people still claim they see angels today, it doesnt make their revelations true."

    The same goes for Mohammad.

    "What are your rebuttles to that Daniel? Obviously if the goal in this religion is to kill non muslims why would they wait til Muhammad is such an old man? why not in the outset?"

    How droll! Seriously, The picture of Mohammad and his immediate family running around trying to kill non-muslims before he had enough converts to raise an army is really quite amusing. In the plaiinest terms possible, Mohammad did not wang war until he had numbers sufficient to wage it successfully, like any man with half a brain would do.

    Dan T,

    "In ALL this, did you ever provide any sources to back your claim that Muslims by and large support terrorism, Daniel?"

    I tend to not bother listing the sources since most of them can be located by a casual web search by anyone who is genuinely interested enough to look, like you. Yes, some of the polls taken show some variance, and all of the polls show at least some percentage of Muslims who do not approve of the violence. The majority of properly sampled polls show a clear majority supporting terrorism, and more supporting terrorism against the US in particular. On a side note, it has been shown through similar polls that there is rampant anti-semitism among Muslims, by rampant I mean a majority.

    "After all, one man's support for terrorism is another's support for freedom fighters, right?"

    Are you equating using the A-bomb as a measure to end an actve war that had cost millions of lives to the use of unprovoked acts of terrorism like the 9/11? I hope not, it would show a serious lack of discernment and reasoning on your part.

    Anonomys,

    You present your quotes, and when viewed in context of Mohammad himself executing every man, woman, and chilkd in a villiage save for 2 or 3, as he DID do on at least one occasion that is recorded, I fail to see the man living up to his own words. If it is wrong to do this, then Mohaamad should have known it and not done it himself.

    I shall leave the resta lone since the actions of Mohammad are condemning enough, although I must say that I am rather looking forward to how a certain Muslim commenter will justify this crime of his prophet.

    By Blogger Daniel Levesque, at 7:19 PM  

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