Tag Archives: creationism

Dear Dr. Hovind…

Recently in a video put out by Kent Hovind, he made a rather flippant comment/question posed to “Flat Earther’s”, regarding how ships supposedly disappear over the horizon, hull first, supposedly proving the curvature of the Earth…

I’m sure he will no doubt be flooded with responses, but here is mine.

Funny How the Atheists Have No Problem Recognizing Biblical Support of a Flat Earth…

I keep bumping into examples like this recently, and it really does strike me as ironic, and a little funny, but a little embarrassing too. Some of the BEST compilations I have encountered of Bible verses describing a Flat Earth, have been put together not by Biblical scholars or theologians, but by Atheists! And the thing is, I very much now have to agree with them, in that, whatever what one might want to believe about the true nature of the Universe, it’s pretty inescapable to see what the Bible itself actually does say

In the end, it’s really an issue of neither side wanting to end up with egg on their face. One side inevitably will. Most people believe that it’s been soundly decided and proved. But has it really…? (After all, the same folks will tell you that Darwinian Evolution has been soundly decided, and proven as “unquestionable scientific fact”…) Either the Bible was wrong, and Christianity has simply been trying to sweep all these “scientifically ignorant” claims of the Bible under the rug for the last several hundred years, OR… The Bible is right, has always been right, and a good deal of what you’ve been told your whole life is simply a ridiculous lie…

Here is an article titled: Why Don’t Christians Who Take the Bible Literally Also Think the Earth Is Flat?

The creationist crowd is in a tithy lately. First there was “Cosmos” — on Fox, no less! —  giving short shrift to everything they hold dear. Then, adding insult to injury, for those paying close attention, long-awaited evidence of the Big Bang arrived.  It’s been a rough few weeks.

But really, if you’re a biblical literalist, it’s been a rough few centuries, or millennia, actually. You see, according to the Bible, the earth is both stationary and flat. Most pointedly, there are at least two passages in which a single point is visible to the whole world (Daniel 4:10-11 and Revelation 1:7), and one (Matthew 4:8) in which the whole world can be seen from a single point — an obvious impossibility unless the earth is flat.

Although the Catholic Church had forced Galileo to recant his work questioning the immobile earth in 1632 — and only pardoned him in 1992 — they did so in part because they were certain the earth was a globe: a globe around which the sun, moon and all other heavenly bodies revolved. Such was the Ptolemaic system, which had dominated Western views for more than a millennium. And yet, the Bible itself reflects a radically different view of the cosmos, one shared by the ancient Egyptians and Babylonians, in which the earth is both stationary and flat. And there is a wide range of scriptural passages to prove it.

The late Robert Schadewald made this point conclusively in “The Flat-Earth Bible,” an article posted on the Web back in 1995.  Schadewald was a former board member and president of the National Center for Science Education, a leader in the fight against creationism and other forms of pseudo-science being pushed into schools. But he was as much an enthusiastic student of fringe or “alternative” science as a source of endless fascination as he was a critic of swallowing it whole.

“When I first became interested in the flat-earthers in the early 1970s, I was surprised to learn that flat-earthism in the English-speaking world is and always has been entirely based upon the Bible,” Schadewald begins his piece. Easily the most influential work is “Zetetic Astronomy, Earth Not a Globe,” by Samuel Birley Rowbotham. Its first, 16-page pamphlet edition, in 1849, predated Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species” by a decade.

“The Biblical cosmology is never explicitly stated, so it must be pieced together from scattered passages,” Schadewald explains. But he starts with the much more direct, explicit Bible statements about an immobile, geocentric earth. It’s a logical starting point, since he notes, “The flat-earth view is geocentricity with further restrictions.” There are hundreds of such passages, according to geocentrist James N. Hanson, who spoke to Schadewald at the 1984 National Bible-Science Conference in Cleveland, but these are “a few obvious texts” that Schadewald chose to cite:

1 Chronicles 16:30: “He has fixed the earth firm, immovable.”

Psalm 93:1: “Thou hast fixed the earth immovable and firm …”

Psalm 96:10: “He has fixed the earth firm, immovable …”

Psalm 104:5: “Thou didst fix the earth on its foundation so that it never can be shaken.”

Isaiah 45:18: “…who made the earth and fashioned it, and himself fixed it fast …”

It’s remarkable enough that most of today’s creationists, wedded to biblical literalism andinerrancy, rarely mention such passages, particularly given the history of Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo. But then there are these, as well:

Daniel 4:10-11: [Nebuchadnezzar] “saw a tree of great height at the centre of the earth … reaching with its top to the sky and visible to the earth’s farthest bounds.”

Matthew 4:8: “Once again, the devil took him to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world [cosmos] in their glory.”

Revelation 1:7: “Behold, he is coming with the clouds! Every eye shall see him …”

A single point cannot see to or be seen from everywhere on a globe at once. For these words to be literally true, the earth must be flat, end of story.

These are only a few passages, of course. To really comprehend the Bible’s flat-earth cosmology, you have to know what you’re looking for — the other elements of the flat-earth world. That’s why Schadewald noted, “As neighbors, the ancient Hebrews had the Egyptians to the southwest and the Babylonians to the northeast. Both civilizations had flat-earth cosmologies. The Biblical cosmology closely parallels the Sumero-Babylonian cosmology, and it may also draw upon Egyptian cosmology.” He went on to document what he meant. In addition to the passages above, he cited passages concerning the nature of the heavens, the order of creation, and the diminutive nature of the sun, moon and stars. All are relevant to the claim of a flat earth, because all are parts of a coherent flat-earth worldview similar to that of Egypt and Babylon’s: The earth is flat; the heavens are a solid dome, fashioned of metal; the sun, moon and stars are relatively small object inside the dome of heaven.  As for the order of creation, Schadewald wrote:

The Genesis creation story provides the first key to the Hebrew cosmology. The orderof creation makes no sense from a conventional perspective but is perfectly logical from a flat-earth viewpoint. The earth was created on the first day, and it was “without form and void (Genesis 1:2).” On the second day, a vault the “firmament” of the King James version was created to divide the waters, some being above and some below the vault. Only on the fourth day were the sun, moon, and stars created, and they were placed “in” (not “above”) the vault.

Regarding the heavens, he noted that the word “firmament” is translated from the Hebrew word raqiya, meaning the “visible vault of the sky,” and coming from riqqua, “beaten out.” “A good craftsman could beat a lump of cast brass into a thin bowl,” Schadewald pointed out. “Thus, Elihu asks Job, ‘Can you beat out [raqa] the vault of the skies, as he does, hard as a mirror of cast metal (Job 37:18)?’” He went on to cite a number of passages supporting the view that the vault of heaven is “a solid, physical object” and thus “a tremendous feat of engineering,” as well as passages from Isaiah [40:22], Job [22:12, 14], and Ezekiel [1:22-26, 10:1], which “complete the picture of the sky as a lofty, physical dome,” not merely an illusion that looks like a dome.

Regarding celestial bodies, Schadewald first noted, “They had to be small to fit inside the vault of heaven,” but added, “Small size is also implied by Joshua 10:12, which says that the sun stood still ‘in Gibeon’ and the moon ‘in the Vale of Aijalon.’” He then cited a number of passages presenting celestial bodies as “exotic living beings,” somewhat similar to how various polytheist religions represent them. And, of course, stars can fall from the skies (Daniel 8:10, Matthew 24:29, Revelation 6:13-16).

While the Bible itself contains no explicit cosmological description, the Book of Enoch, a highly regarded source that influenced the Bible, does. Schadewald pointed out that Jude 14- 15 quotes 1 Enoch 1:9, attributes prophecy to Enoch, and thus “confers inspired status upon the book.”  He went on to say:

Unlike the canonical books of the Bible, which (in my view) were never meant to teach science, sections of 1 Enoch were intended to describe the natural world. The narrator sometimes sounds like a 2nd century B.C. Carl Sagan explaining the heavens and earth to the admiring masses. The Enochian cosmology is precisely the flat-earth cosmology previously derived from the canonical books.

This includes trips to the ends of the earth, a detailed description of solar and lunar motion, including six openings in heaven for them to emerge from when they rise and another six to pass into when they set, according to the season, and  more information about stars, including their punishment for transgressions.

Some might be inclined to think that Schadewald was overstating his case. That’s understandable. Skepticism is good. So they should consider what a true believer had to say. In “Earth Not a Globe,”  Rowbotham first presented a series of secular arguments on a wide range of specific issues, but in the end he resorted to wide-ranging, detailed arguments from scripture, in which moral, religious and physical arguments were all jumbled together with extensive quotations from the Bible.

At one point, for example, Rowbotham cited more than two dozen passages, such asPsalm 103, 11, “For as the Heaven is high above the Earth,” to argue that “If the Earth is a globe revolving at the rate above a thousand miles an hour all this language of scripture is necessarily fallacious.” “Up” and “down” are meaningless, he argued, if the place you point to as “up above” you is millions of miles away by the time you’re finished speaking. This may seem like a bizarre position, but it actually accurately reflects a consistent, literal-minded, stationary geocentric worldview — if not an exclusively flat-earth perspective. It simply shows how much scriptural evidence one can find, depending on the set of assumptions one begins with — which in turn shows just how difficult, if not impossible, it is to change the minds of true believers.

In another passage, Rowbotham argued about the nature of celestial bodies, further illustrating how his viewpoint produces a proliferation of scriptural support. First, he rejected the notion that the moon shines with reflected light, quoting Genesis 1, 16-17,“He made the Stars also; and God set them in the firmament to give light upon the earth,”and 10 other passages, before concluding, “Nothing is here said, nor is it said in any other part of Scripture, that the sun only is a great light, and that the moon only shines by reflection.” Then he argued that stars are not sunlike objects vast distances away, but rather are lights in the sky created to give light to the earth at night. These clearly mattered to him because of the entire worldview they are part of — precisely the point that Schadewald made.

Not incidentally, in making his point about the stars, Rowbotham misrepresented the scientific view by claiming, for example, “[T]he modern system of astronomy teaches that this earth cannot possibly receive light from the Stars, because of their supposed great distance from it.”  Here, and throughout his argument, he confuses the matter of starlightreaching the earth, so that we can see the stars, with the matter of starlight illuminatingthe earth, so that we can see other objects by the light of the stars. The two are entirely different matters, but Rowbotham, for all his careful attention to words when it suits him, never seems to notice. In the end, however, he makes a claim so wild, it seems to make everything else irrelevant. He says that travelers report that in many other parts of the world, starlight is “sufficiently intense to enable them to read and write.”  Yet, the confusion of terms in his argument is vital to setting the tone for this final, preposterous assertion — all of it, firmly rooted in scripture as he reads it.

Again, this may seem far removed from the idea of a flat earth. But for Rowbotham, our inability to see the connection is but further proof of how little we understand. And he had a point. The world as he envisions it is so radically different than our own that we find it difficult, if not impossible, to imagine what he takes for granted. But if the earth is flat, covered by a physical dome that contains the stars, then the descriptions he offers do make sense — and for Rowbotham, reading the Bible as he did, it’s impossible to separate one part of that cosmology from any of the others.

Rowbotham also made a further argument about the stars that goes to the subject of moral confusion and relativism — neatly anticipating the anti-Darwinians who would follow him. If, he argued, the stars are “not simply lights, as the scriptures affirm them to be, but magnificent worlds,” then there arise all sorts of theological conundrums — Are the worlds inhabited? If so, have the first parents be tempted? Have they fallen? Been redeemed? Does each world have a separate redeemer? Or is Christ the redeemer for every world? If so, was his suffering on earth sufficient for all the other worlds? And what of Adam’s fall?  Did it implicate the inhabitants of all other worlds? “The Christian philosopher must be confounded!” Rowbotham exclaimed. “If his religion be to him a living reality, he will turn with loathing or spurn with indignation and disgust, as he would a poisonous reptile, a system of astronomy which creates in his mind so much confusion and uncertainty!”  What a relief, then, to know that it’s all garbage, that earth is the only world ever created!  How strikingly similar, then, his rejection of secular astronomy was to the creationists’ rejection of secular biology.

This is but part of a larger family resemblance, as Schadewald explains in “The Evolution of Bible-Science,” a chapter he contributed to the 1984 volume, “Scientists Confront Creationism“ (adapted version here). In his introduction, Schadewald wrote:

“For two thousand years, various groups of dogmatists have tried to force the universe to fit their interpretation of Scripture. They have judged and rejected evidence and explanations according to the standard of their own religious beliefs. On scriptural grounds, some have rejected (and continue to reject) the sphericity of the earth, the Copernican system, and the evolution of life on earth. In the last two centuries, flat-earthers, geocentrists, and creationists have adopted a label for their dogmas: Bible-science.”

It’s obvious why creationists would not want to be associated with flat-earthers, but it’s not at all obvious why we should let them get away with it, given how similar their arguments, assumptions and purposes are.  In discussing the internal divisions of Bible science, Shadewald wrote:

“Though flat-earthism is as well-supported scripturally and scientifically as creationism, the creationists plainly do not want to be associated with flat-earthers….

“[Y]oung-earth creationism closely resembles the flat-earth movement. In fact, young-earth creationism, geocentrism, and flat-earthism are respectively the liberal, moderate, and conservative branches of the Bible-science tree. The intense hostility expressed by the scientific creationists toward the flat-earthers does not extend to modern geocentrists, who hover on the edge of respectability among creationists. Indeed, though the Bible is, from Genesis to Revelation, a flat-earth book, the geocentrists have combined forces with liberal creationists to cast the flat-earthers into outer darkness.”

And, indeed, the similarities are much more basic than the differences, as he quickly went on to note. In an earlier, 1981 article, he explained more fully:

“Despite their internecine warfare, Bible-Scientists are in broad agreement on a number of issues. They agree on the usefulness of the Bible as a scientific text, the weakness of mere theories, the duplicity of conventional scientists, and the impossibility of reconciling conventional science with the Bible. The creation and flat-earth movements have similar foundations and histories, and both have used similar strategies to propagate their beliefs. Indeed, both believe they are battling the same behind-the-scenes opponent.”

Today, more than 30 years after Shadewald wrote those words, belief in the “weakness of mere theories” and “the duplicity of conventional scientists” now extend well beyond Bible science, into the far reaches of the culture war as conservatives see it, including the field of global warming, where conservatives openly parade their contempt for scientific theories, and their suspicion (if not conviction) that scientists are involved in an elaborate deception (“climategate,” anyone?).  In this same article, Shadewald quoted Rowbotham:

“Let the practise of theorising be abandoned as one oppressive to the reasoning powers, fatal to the full development of truth, and, in every sense, inimical to the solid progress of sound philosophy.”

And he went on to say:

Charles K. Johnson, president of the Flat Earth Society, is absolutely vehement about scientific dishonesty. He regularly calls scientists “liars” and “demented dope fiends” and claims that the entire space program is a “carnie game.”

With these sorts of venomous sentiments now infusing not just Bible scientists, but the wider conservative audience for global warming denialism, birtherism, groundless claims of “death panels” and massive voter fraud, etc., it seems high time that progressives stop playing defense and start going on offense. Asking Christian conservatives to defend flat-earthism any time they open their mouths would be an excellent place to start. The Bible, after all, is far, far clearer in supporting a flat earth than it is in opposing abortion, much less birth control.

So, thank you, Atheists. Nice work! A fair enough challenge indeed. Unfortunately, science might not be coming down on the side we’ve all long assumed after all…

The Peculiar Peter-Pantheism of All Those Biomechanical Algorithms…

X6kTu Yesterday I was asked by someone to “extrapolate” on some things I said about how Evolution is itself a religious belief system, and beyond this that all such complaints made by atheists about how the existence “religion” infringes upon their ability to live short, happy lives without being laden with things like fictional religious guilt are ultimately nonsensical, because from the perspective of scientific naturalism inherent to traditional Evolution, there really is no such things as “pain”, or “happiness”, or even true free will.

One of the things that is so confounding about these kinds of dialogues, is that time and again, the Evolutionist will demand that the person believing in the Bible (or any other religion, but for the most part it’s usually about challenging the Bible…) “prove” to them the truthfulness of the Bible, from within the constraints of their own pre-supposed naturalistic worldview. Scientific naturalism is always inserted at the beginning of the entire matter, and assumed to be fact a priori, completely ignoring the obvious fact that to do this is to just assume the conclusion of the matter before the questions are even asked. It basically goes, “Science tells us that there is nothing but the physical world, so HA, there is no such thing as imaginary fairy-tail nonsense such as that which is in your absurd Bible!”

Of course, by definition, that which is supernatural does not fit into the category of that which is “natural”, and so really this is just a tired application of circular reasoning, a merry-go-round that seemingly some people almost don’t know how, or just don’t want to, get off. But what I find even MORE fascinating, is how this very same pre-determined, purely naturalistic cosmology, while being vigorously applied as the big stick with which to whack away at God like some piñata, in fact isn’t something that I have found too many proponents of Evolution wanting to delve too deeply into when it comes to fully contemplating what the ramifications would then truly be for, well, everything, starting with themselves…

Because what does Evolution essentially declare? It asserts many things, the first of which is that many, many, billions of years ago, everything was compacted into an infinitesimally small point (but we don’t know how that came to be there), and then the point suddenly blew up, flinging all of it’s compacted “stuff” outward in every direction. Then, the flying, spiraling “stuff”, began to mysteriously organize itself. Somehow, the “stuff”, allegedly first in the form of hydrogen atoms, unconsciously decided upon a fairly complex set of physical laws that it would obey, as it went about the task of rearranging itself on the atomic and subatomic levels, eventually giving birth to the rest of the elements in our periodic table. The newly-formed spectrum of periodic elements then eventually started combining in a variety of ways to create molecules and gas clouds and massive spinning boulders comprised of different minerals and such. Some of the swirling gases then started clumping together into monstrous pockets, which then lit themselves on fire, and the stars began to light the universe.

If you have been blessed with a solid public school education, then you probably already know how the rest goes. The hurling, whirling boulders (self-sculpting into spheroids) started hitching rides on the gravitational pulls of some of these gas-torches. Some of them even figured out a way to start spinning in the completely opposite direction.(!?) One particular spheroid landed in a most fortuitous track around what we now call our “sun”, where it never got too close to get cooked, and never got too far away to be frozen solid. This cozy little spot made for a very ideal oven-of-life indeed. Throw in a few more billion years, add a sprinkling of some more minerals and elements floating in from space, then let it bake. (The recipe allows for adding/subtracting a few billion years of course, to get it just right) And then, eventually, inevitably, miraculously, mysteriously, mystically, the first cell was born. Complete with a genetic code enabling it to replicate itself, feed itself, and grow into some kind of pan-primordial-ocean algae. Being algae is boring of course, so (add another several million more times around the sun) and the algae is now swimming around with flagellum and even little fins. The once “simple” code of that first cell has now managed to piece together billions of new sequences of coded proteins, building all kinds of new cell types, which keep on, again and again, growing within organisms in just the right formations to eventually form things like scales, and gills, and eyeballs, and even cells capable of bioluminescence…

So of course, the more millions of years are added to the equation, the more the codes continually rewrite and upgrade themselves. Fish crawl onto land. The land-fish become reptiles and birds. The “accidental” self-writing code never stops, giving hummingbirds the ability to hover and bats the ability to use echolocation. One branch, called “mammals” get bigger, and fatter, and some of them less hairy over time, until…. VOILA… Here we are! And that, in a nutshell, is the mythology “science” of Evolution. It’s so simple! DIRT (all the “stuff”…) + TIME (remember, lots of time…) + MATH (and don’t ask us where the math comes from…) Dirt + Time + Math = Everything.

gearbrainI realize I’m being a bit facetious here, but seriously, that’s what you’re left with, when all is said and done. Everything, from me to you, from the bacteria swimming in your toilet to the waves of a hurricane, is all just algorithms in the end. Matter which is (for whatever reason) organized into a dizzying array of algorithms interacting with other algorithms, all combining into larger “macro-algorithms”, off into infinity. Some of these algorithms we classify as being “biological”, but from a strictly materialistic point-of-view, the biomechanical algorithms (what we usually call “life”) are just algorithms which happen to have a different kind of internal math than the non-bio ones. When a bio-algorithm “dies”, this is merely just mechanical process of a mathematical function playing itself out. Well, either that or another algorithm of one kind or another disrupts it’s natural process of computation, and the equation becomes too depleted of it’s computational abilities to continue crunching along. That’s the Evolutionary universe. From top to bottom, and everything in between.

So again, you and I, as biomechanical algorithms, while we may perceive ourselves as having things like “memories” or “feelings”, or experience things like “pain” and “pleasure”, these too, of course, and just nothing more than variables being punched through the complicated mechanical/mathematical mish mash that are our brains and bodies. Chemical reactions, and tiny electrical currents, which interact and function as a massive algorithm to sense and interpret things like: temperature, motion, gravity, light, sonic waves. Some of these sonic waves are being produced by other biomechanical algorithms, and form patterns interpreted as “words”. The “words” are eventually interpreted by the individual algorithm, as it “grows up” (i.e. carries out it’s own equation) as having meaning behind them, and astoundingly, what is occurring all around us, all day every day, is just algorithms “talking” to other algorithms. Absorbing data inward, and then spitting data back out. Chat-bots talking to other chat-bots. Googles talking to a google of other Googles.

The assemblage of all these individual humanoid bio-algorithms interacting together, creating one big macro-algorithm, is sometimes referred to as “Society”… 😉

Okay, enough of that. You get the idea. I’ve probably now tortured the metaphor worse than a poor orange-suited soul at Git-mo. But it really was necessary to lay such groundwork, because clearly, obviously, none of us really accept this idea that in the end we are nothing but sophisticated chat bots equipped with biomechanical, bipedal vehicles to walk around in. Not even the staunchest adherents of Evolution. We all cling furiously to there being true meaning to our existence, even if that meaning is nothing more than a flash in the universal pan. And speaking of “pans”, this is the very point at which I believe so many people nowadays encounter the intrinsic theoretical/practical conflict, the cognitive dissonance, and why indeed the younger generations, reared on Darwinian milk, are increasingly now turning towards one type of mysticism, “spirituality”, or another. Mandelbrot-large It’s really not surprising at all, when you only step back and recognize that what Evolution essentially embodies IS pantheism, even if on the surface it adamantly espouses full-on hatred for any form of “theism”. Practically speaking, what is being described is nonetheless a Universe which “creates itself”, a Universe that is impersonal, yet behaves like a conscious entity, a Universe that is meaningless yet somehow gives itself meaning.

So really, the person subscribing to the theory of Evolution has basically choices, either take the basic outline of a self-generating Universe that creates seemingly autonomous beings with a desire for meaning, and combine it with any one of the “mystical traditions” on the philosophical shelf (Buddhism, Hinduism, “New Age”, take your pick…) or, remain in the even more dichotomous realm of “traditional” scientific naturalism, unable to even point to anything at all as to why humans inevitably seek meaning, and that which is “good” vs. that which “bad”, talking in endless circles about the relativity of “ethics” until the philosophical merry-go-round makes you sick. These folks, who on the one hand argue up and down that we are all nothing but biomechanical algorithms bumping into one another, can’t accept the full ramifications of what it would mean to actually just totally accept this explanation and live it out to it’s fullest degree. This is why it makes a lot of sense then, to see the majority of the focus being put on just going after the other alternative explanation, (that of Creation), because if you keep yourself busy lobbing critiques at the idea of a personal, Creator God, then you’re preoccupied enough to ignore the internal contradictions of your own professed cosmology. The best defense is a good offense, after all…

“Peter-pantheism” seems as good (and catchy) a term for it as any, since I very much do see it as being akin to wanting to just stay in Neverland, never “growing up” in the sense of just stopping and admitting that like everyone else, Evolution is “religion”. It is admittedly a strange form of mysticism that is intent on denying it’s own mystical nature. It humors itself to no end, laughing at the “unscientific” beliefs of other religions, yet won’t even recognize the glaringly Unscientific claims it makes in the name of it’s own god, “Science”. It is of course really no different than any other form of pantheism in it’s practical application, because what pantheism does is just make the entire universe into “god”, and since we are all a part of this universe, we are all a part of “god”. We are declared gods unto ourselves, and this, this is what both the tenured professor of biology lecturing in some University somewhere on the evolution of humanity, and the painted swami sitting cross-legged in some ashram somewhere in India, ultimately both have completely in common…

“Danger, Danger”: New Atheism, 9/11, and the Developing Political Climate…

1458“Monsters exist, but they are too few in number to be truly dangerous. More dangerous are the common men, the functionaries ready to believe and to act without asking questions.” ― Primo Levi

The past few weeks I have rather unexpectedly found myself engaged within a significant number of “discussions” with various atheist bloggers. I am typically not one to be turned off by rigorous debate, or even a fair amount of internet snark, as I know how prone I am to using it myself, but after a while, sigh….. It just gets downright exhausting. Then recently I find myself listening to Like Flint Radio, as the hosts are interviewing Graham Veale, author of the book, “New Atheism: A Survival Guide”.

Graham begins the interview with this synopsis of “New Atheism”:
After 9/11, New Atheism really came into it’s own with the book “the God Delusion” by Richard Dawkins, joined by the other “Horsemen” of Sam Harris, who wrote “Latter-Day Christian Nation”, American philosopher Daniel Dennet, and Christopher Hitchens, author of “God is not Great”.

They essentially believe that Faith is always irrational, that it’s always blind, that it always disregards reason and evidence, and therefore Faith is dangerous, because it can become fanaticism as easily as it can become Quakerism. So, faith is always blind, so faith is therefore dangerous, and really needs to be opposed, and if possible, eradicated. Not through violent means, as they would see this being achieved through education, but also through aggressive political action, which is why we see various court cases and such, and also through aggressive rhetoric, and the thinking being that because Faith is irrational, you cannot reason with religious people, so therefore what you have to do is mock and ridicule religious people, you have to make them feel the pressure, to make them feel that they need to change to be accepted by an educated society, and mainly this strategy is used to not only knock religious people off their stride, but make anyone who would consider becoming religious, step away from their religion, so it’s used to almost embarrass those people in the middle. And then finally there would be what I would call dogmatic scientism, which is a particular attitude towards science. So that would really characterize the “New Atheism”, the online communities, the attitude towards Faith, and this rhetorical strategy of using ridicule and mockery instead of rigorous argument… (mostly word for word there, bit of paraphrasing)

Let me just tell you, this describes the tone of almost every single exchange I have participated in recently to a tee. And honestly, I think it is this specific point about religion (particularly the evangelical Christian variety…) being “dangerous” which has really captivated me so, kept me jumping back into the fray. Maybe it’s because, if you spend any time at all perusing the typical topics I delve into here on the blog, you’ll see that I spend a GOOD deal of energy and time talking about “danger, danger!” myself. I too see 9/11 as a very real touchstone in the shift of thinking of our society as a whole. I too believe that blind allegiances and lack of cognitive examination are what sets us up for disastrous manifestations of totalitarianism down the road. I too find that false beliefs, in false narratives, can indeed be “dangerous”.

So oddly enough, there are actually a lot of commonalities, a lot of areas in which I can genuinely empathize with the “New Atheist”, although getting one to see this at all is no small feat. The fact that I believe in God or the Bible at all is grounds to immediately chide me as being “indoctrinated” and “brainwashed”, (which I find hilariously ironic as they themselves parrot sayings and slanderings from the mouth of their Prophet-of-New-Atheism Richard Dawkins. But no matter..) In any case, the fact that my own perceptions and views on things like institutional religion, or using political avenues to “influence the morality of the culture”, do not fit their pre-configured stereotypes AT ALL, doesn’t seem to make much difference. They are convinced. I, am “dangerous”. 🙂

And so as this theme continues to repeatedly float to the surface in the course of these debates, I almost feel myself being compelled to FIRST formulate a staunch apologetic as to why this assumption/assertion is patently, demonstrably FALSE. I am no danger to you, as an Atheist. (nor as a Buddhist, or a Muslim, or a Wiccan, or whatever else you might be/not be…) What to me is also quite worthy of noting, is that YOU are not viewed as a danger to ME! I do not believe in fighting some “culture war”. I do not believe in trying to pass laws to tell you what kind of sex is right or wrong. I do not believe, at all, in trying to preserve even a hint of some “Christian heritage of America”. I really don’t. For every “new Atheist” I have spent time76938104797169bd3b9b12deb43406b7 with, (trying to at least demonstrate that Faith in God IS in fact something that many people DO arrive at after years of questioning, research, contemplation, and religious criticism), I spend probably twice as much engaging with fellow Christians, pointing out, again and again, that indeed the things taught by Jesus and every one of His followers in the Bible in fact do not square up with the Ameri-centric, wave-the-Flag, fight-the-Commies, bomb-the-Terrorists, support-Israel-no-matter-how-many-innocents-they-kill, “God, Guns and Gold” narrative.

For generations now, Christians HAVE indeed been guilty of giving allegiance to a host of agendas which in the end have now become the fuel for the New Atheism fire. It makes it quite easy for a guy like Dawkins or Hitchens to come along, and declare that belief in God is tantamount to being clinically insane and that such beliefs really are what provide the impetus for things like perpetual war and American neo-colonialism. (Neo-wha…? Colonialism? Today? Indeed, most American Christians still scoff at this, oblivious…)

There is so much sad irony in all of this, all these different confused and twisted plot lines, all tangled up together like the huge ball of Christmas lights Clark Griswold pulls out of his garage…

The “Evangelicals” of America, having been convinced over the past decades to relegate themselves to being no more than just another voting block instead being salt and light as the Body of Christ, have helped write significant chapters of this religion-fosters-division-and-hostility narrative, sold by New Atheism, by doing things like rally around the “conservative Christian” George W. Bush, buying up his book during his first Presidential bid and hailing his “testimony” as proof-positive that he was going to get into that oval office and “bring Christian values back to America”…

That, as we all know, is not at all what happened…

“Born-again-Bonesman Bush” just happens to be the one at the helm when “ex”-CIA asset Bin Laden (whose family is also long-time friends of the Bushes…) finally decides to penetrate the most heavily armed and guarded military power ever to have existed in world history, using less than a dozen coke-sniffing student-pilots who navigate passenger aircraft (which they’ve never flown before) with stunning, limit-pushing maneuvers into World Trade Center complex buildings, whose security was provided by Securacom, where the POTUS’s little brother Marvin P. Bush, just so happened to be a principal owner. (There were sure a lot of those “just-so-happened’s on 9/11, weren’t there..?)

Drone11111111-156150-165663-166189-172588-640x480So instead of some “return to Christian values”, the son of pedophile-partying, Bohemian-grooving, Central-intelligencing Daddy-Bush only brought us further down the path towards the Luciferian “New Atlantis” rather than the Garden of Eden, complete with Draconian legislation such as the Patriot Act, invasions of multiple sovereign nations under false premises, drones which now fly around the entire globe striking targets without repercussion, and, oh yes, the NSA is now admittedly recording everything you say online, everywhere you go, everything you buy, etc., and storing it all in some idiotically massive database somewhere in Utah or Maryland or wherever else…cops3

So, yes, my friends from the “New Atheism” movement, you are not altogether incorrect in ascribing a certain label of “dangerous” towards certain segments of people with a “religious persuasion”. There are a good many points where I will be amongst the first to stand up beside you and denounce the use of “Faith-based patriotic fervor” to propel one political agenda or another. At the same time, however, I will say that you as well need to be willing to stop, and look deeper into the “subtle nuances” between the alleged “danger” of the family down the street who prays before every meal and thanks God or their food, and the REAL dangers of men and women in positions of extreme power, whose “religion” in fact involves the precise OPPOSITE of what Jesus of Nazareth taught.  The Constitution has all but been put through the shredder, but you don’t realize that this is not the work of those darned “fundamentalist Christians”!   These other folks, (many of whom parade and pose as “Christians” in the daytime…) however, do not believe in “turning the other cheek”, or “loving your neighbor as yourself”. They DO believe in a manifestation of “Evolution” as well, but when you start to actually look at it through their Lucierian, globalist lens, you will start to realize that in fact they see YOU and I as equally being the mosquito, while they are the T-Rex.

If you want to understand who and what the REAL “dangerous” believers are, you need to look a little further than the explanations already pre-packaged for you by guys like Richard Dawkins, do a full investigation of the matter on your OWN, and eventually realize that this demonization of Christians (which is really who is primarily meant by the term “religion”) is in fact part of a larger agenda being pushed by people who believe in the “nonsensical magic” you constantly mock and despise! Get acquainted with their “god”, their creeds, their rituals, and perhaps you might start to think the little church down the street, where everything they believe and do is all open for all to see, ain’t that bad or “oppressive” after all.
The irony is, “New Atheism” mirrors precisely the same hatred for God that the ancient, gnostic narrative has always held, elevates man to the same position of seeking divinity for himself, puts the same faith in our own ability to become masters of our own universe. It essentially IS Gnosticism, only on the level that it doesn’t even recognize it’s own origins. Like some introductory level of a “mystery school”, they are still in the stage of holding firmly to the tenets of scientific materialism. Eventually, this adherence to materialism is left behind (if you are so “initiated”), while the “dogmatic scientism” remains, only to be re-applied towards a broader scope of natural and mystical reality. All wizards consider themselves “scientists”, after all, and all are very much striving to Evolve in every sense of the word. Ask yourself, do you really want to be the unsuspecting dupe of propaganda being applied by people who embrace belief in the very spiritual realm you find laughable?

When one puts achieving god-hood at the center of their purpose in life, then there becomes no dark path they will not be willing to follow to achieve it, for who, in the end, is going to stop them, or judge them, when all is said and done, if they are the ones sitting on the throne…?

“Bent creatures are full of fears” ― C.S. Lewis, Out of the Silent Planet

HOVINDICATION Compilation Album just released…

It’s done. It’s out. My buddy Sam at God’s Property Radio has finally got it up and available for download. This compilation, featuring 25 tracks from a whole host of different artists, was created to support the current legal situation of Dr. Kent Hovind, and I gotta say, I’m pretty blown away by some of the songs on here. It kicks off with an incredible new work by one of my favorites, Destiny Lab (featuring Ark of Digging for the Truth with Ark and Neo…), as well as lots of other great “Truth Music” artists such as Dissident Prophet, Ninja Scroll, Blinky D, Gonz Shinmura from Canary Cry Radio, IIISamuel (Sam from GPR..) and many more. (There’s even a little track submitted by yours truly in there…)

HCOMPSo there you have it. Please do go to FREEKENT.COM where you can find the full album available for download, as well as HOVINDICATION t-shirts (a t-shirt order comes with free CD download acHSHIRTtually), all of which goes fully towards supporting Kent in the trial of his life…