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BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy

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Subject: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Tunesmith
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:34 AM

This is great!
The Bible is the evidence that what Stephen says is true!
For example, only a nutter would tell a father to kill his son ( Abraham ) and only a evil war monger would support the attack on a city which just happens to be in the way ( Jericho ).

Blasphemy? It's a joke!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:41 AM

I've seen a little about this, but not a lot. It is may be a genuine attempt to have him prosecuted but sometimes such actions are brought to demonstrate the absurdity of the law. I dont know enough to say which applies in this case.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:45 AM

It should make interesting news if it ever comes to court Tunesmith!
As you say, it's all there in the Bible. Since Muslims and Jews also venerate the Prophets (including Abraham and Joshua) they can jump on the bandwagon too.

I'm not that keen on Stephen Fry, but he has every right to say what he did. I personally can't explain a God who allows such suffering, created malaria-bearing mosquitoes and nasty viruses and sits idly by while starving babies waste away and cancer kills millions.
Can I expect a knock on the door any day now?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:52 AM

http://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/stephen-fry-under-police-investigation-for-blasphemy-after-branding-god-an-utter-maniac/ar-


[Tunesmith, if it is a long address the blickifier can't cope. You have to paste the full address into the first part "a href="... ]


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:54 AM

I'm an atheist at present, but sometimes I think most people don't have any understanding of what motivates sincerely religious people.

Fry is a worthless character, vicious and egotistical in the extreme.
A product of media hype, still living on the back of a few cameo roles from twenty years ago......completely irrelevant.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:57 AM

Fry is a worthless character, vicious and egotistical in the extreme.
A product of media hype, still living on the back of a few cameo roles from twenty years ago......completely irrelevant.


In your opinion.

It is my opinion that anyone who gets upset by anything that has a dig at their religion cannot be very secure in their beliefs anyway.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 07 May 17 - 09:08 AM

I wonder if your opinion also applies to ideologies? :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 07 May 17 - 09:24 AM

Good for Stephen Fry, tell that irish idiot to fuck off!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 May 17 - 09:26 AM

Of course it does. If anyone cannot bear to have their ideology questioned or joked about then they cannot be very secure with it. However, ideology tends to refer to secular matters while religion to the spiritual. Ideology deals in facts while religion deals in faith. Mocking facts will only result in presentation of said facts while mocking faith has no counter but to claim it upsets people. Awwwww, what a shame.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 07 May 17 - 09:38 AM

i like Stephen Fry.
His biographies are very entertaining. His film Wilde - that he starred in was wonderful- the PG Wodehouse stuff that he co-starred was pitch perfect, i loved it.

THe TV programme bores the arse off me, but he's erudite, witty and compassionate - usually.

he has more to offer Ireland than organised religion - that they could do well without.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 07 May 17 - 09:54 AM

Fry has as much right to comment on a totally irrational set of beliefs as anybody else does
Waking on water - raising the dead ................. come on!!
Does anybody believe in that guff nowadays
http://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/religion-and-beliefs/catholic-doctrines-no-longer-make-sense-says-fr-tony-flannery-1.3030855
(CAN'T BLUE CLICKIE)
That anyyone should make an issue of whether they like Fry or not as an an entertainer sounds like a nasty dose of sour grapes - try Immodium!!
The philosophy and principles of religion are a totally different matter but they only become important when they are made compulsory or thrust down the throats of immature children
The four centuries old Blasphemy Laws are long overdue for being put in a locked cupboard alongside the ducking stool and hanging, drawing and quartering.
Isn't it odd how those first to defend these primitive legal practices are usually the first to squeal about other religions and cultures.
THe last trial for blasphemy in Britain was just under a century ago, I would have thought the world had moved on since then
As Bozo says "good for Fry" (could have done without the racism, but that's education for you)
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: FreddyHeadey
Date: 07 May 17 - 10:13 AM

It is a rather clickbait article though. 2015!? More annoying than a straight advert!
No new information there.
Three or for short paragraphs then

...originally reported to police in 2015. The complainant is said to have followed up last year, and to have received a phone call from a detective some weeks ago to discuss the case.

The paper quoted a source as saying a prosecution was unlikely.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jos
Date: 07 May 17 - 10:24 AM

I have long assumed that if there is a God, he/she/it is an all-powerful creative force. I see no reason to suppose that if there is such a force, that force should necessarily be benign and caring.
You might think it ought to be, but that doesn't mean it is, or that if it isn't then it doesn't exist.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 07 May 17 - 11:05 AM

Fry is a riot, and also rather correct in that a lot of the actions ascribed to the judeochrislamic deity, if committed or attempted by a person today, would be grounds for commitment.

And I loved his Jeeves to Hugh Laurie's Bertie Wooster.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 07 May 17 - 12:58 PM

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/news/explainer-why-is-stephen-fry-being-investigated-by-garda-for-blasphemy-and-what-happen

An interesting outline of the offense and the law, and more importantly the danger of such a law.
For Ireland to be considered a secular society and a progressive society this law should not have been created and needs to be repealed.
Is free speech no longer allowed?
Be interesting to watch the extradition proceedings. It will make Ireland a laughing stock.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 07 May 17 - 01:12 PM

It is so easy for anyone to cherry-pick passages from the Bible.. to take them out of context. As a Christian, I don't see fit to judge anyones faith or lack of it but I guess I have done and still do promote it, as it's part of the Great Commission established in the New Testament. Stephen Fry is entitled to his own opinion but using his public image to try to ridicule what many millions of Christians have believed for 2017 years should be halted. I don't force my beliefs or Faith upon anyone... why should he be allowed to blaspheme mine~? I may differ with some of the opinions of 'Catters' but I would never knock them for their faith or lack of it, or submit to trying to 'show them up'. Everyone makes their own choice... some need to force it on others by whatever means are available to them, even name calling. If I did that for my Faith I would be accused of proselytising (as I have been on here many years ago). He has given me many laughs in English comedy... but Stephen Fry should stick to it...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jack Campin
Date: 07 May 17 - 01:21 PM

James Kirkup was prosecuted for "blasphemous libel" in England in the 70s. (The law never applied in Scotland and has been abolished in England as well).


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 07 May 17 - 01:51 PM

" Stephen Fry is entitled to his own opinion but using his public image to try to ridicule what many millions of Christians have believed for 2017 years should be halted."

I suppose had he supported brexit or the Trump vote thousands would have been swayed by his support. I think not.
I think the premise advanced is false.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:04 PM

As Bozo says "good for Fry" (could have done without the racism, but that's education for you)

"The idiot IS Irish" - must have been on the same course as that other Irish idiot Paisley!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:05 PM

I'm a Stephen Fry fan and I believe that heresy should not only not be a subject of national legal concern, but should be mandatory on occasion.

There is an old saying "God is not mocked". I always took that to mean that a genuine deity cannot be sullied by mere words, hence mere words were allowable to be uttered without retribution.
Sadly , the world is a long way from understanding this the way I do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Thompson
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:20 PM

Bloody awful. I thought we'd moved away from the Father Ted era. So embarrassing. Especially tragic as ultra-right-wing regimes in the Middle East justify their blasphemy executions by pointing out that blasphemy is illegal in Ireland.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:27 PM

Criticising or mocking other people's religions is rather fraught with problems on many levels.

While one can agree or disagree with an 'opinion', one can be incensed by mockery or outright attack. For example, I imagine one avoids public criticism of Islam, for obvious reasons. No-one wants to provoke a mass outcry, or worse, by any religious faction. But Fry's remarks strike me as humanistic and compassionate about the suffering in the world, which 'God' appears to do nothing to address. I can relate to that.

I believe in God, but cannot reconcile His lack of action, and seeming indifference to what one sees, with the image of Him in the Bible as an all-powerful, loving Father-Creator.

I've seen Mr Fry many times in Norwich, having a coffee in John Lewis. I'm not much interested in his comedy, but he is a well-read and extremely intelligent man (as evidenced by the QI programme)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Felipa
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:45 PM

I was shocked to read how recent this legislation is
"Under Ireland's 2009 Defamation Act, anyone "who publishes or utters blasphemous matter shall be guilty of an offence" and liable to a fine of up to €25,000 (£21,200)." Independent newspaper, link given by Freddy Headly

It does look like someone reported Fry's speech in order to draw attention to how the law could possibly be (mis)used:

" 'I told the Garda I wanted to report Fry for uttering blasphemy and RTE for publishing/broadcasting it and that I believed these were criminal offenses under the Defamation Act 2009,' the person told the news site. 'I simply believed that the comments made by Fry on RTE were criminal blasphemy and that I was doing my civic duty by reporting a crime.'

"Local authorities told the Independent that they are investigating the complaint but that charges are unlikely." Huffington Post
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/stephen-fry-faces-blasphemy-probe_us_590f1ad4e4b0e7021e984f5a


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Felipa
Date: 07 May 17 - 02:50 PM

"The state of the law was considered by the Convention on the Constitution, which concluded in its Sixth Report, The removal of the offence of blasphemy from the Constitution,

    that the offence of blasphemy should be removed from the Constitution;
    that it should be replaced by a general provision to include a prohibition on incitement to religious hatred; and
    that a new set of detailed legislative provisions should be introduced which would include provisions on incitement to religious hatred.

"The prerequisite to amending the Constitution is a referendum. The then Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality, Aodhan Ó Ríordáin, told Dáil Éireann that there would be a referendum to remove the requirement for a crime of blasphemy from the Constitution, noting that "In practice, there have been no prosecutions under the 2009 Act and the last public prosecution for blasphemy in Ireland appears to have been brought in 1855". But that was in a statement to the Dáil on 2 October 2014 and the referendum has still not happened."

read more (the article is quite straight-forward) at http://www.lawandreligionuk.com/2017/05/07/blasphemy-the-irish-constitution-and-stephen-fry/

article by Frank Cramer, who agrees with common consensus that a prosecution is unlikely


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 07 May 17 - 03:16 PM

"have believed for 2017 "
As a socialist, I occasionally become somewhat pissed of when the term is used as one of abuse - regularly here.
Muslims are constantly coming under attack for their beliefs on this forum.
Whence the difference?
Over those 2017 years Christianity has been used as an excuse for torture, mass murder by burning for "kicking with the wrong foot", an excuse for international plunder - from The Crusades to WW1 - and more recently, as an opportunity to sexually abuse children and enslave "falen women".
Hardly a belief worth making 'untouchable'
Religion in Ireland is nor entering a fascinating phase.
Following the last few decade's revelations, it has largely falen from grace in the minds of many former believers.
The latest skirmish is over it is right for Ireland's main maternity hospital should be owned by 'The Sisters of Mercy' (probably Ireland's wealthiest religions body, with all the restrictions that will put on bringing children into the world in an establishment which still has strict rules on how the population should behave
No too long ago, on our local radio station, two of these good sisters described the Magdalene Girls in their care as "the sweepings of the street".
Fully old world
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 07 May 17 - 03:55 PM

I take the view that anti-blasphemy and anti-heresy laws and positions are taken not for the purpose of protecting deities but of protecting the deity's representatives on earth. On this and other forums I am fond of saying: "I'm not critiquing G-d, I'm critiquing YOU"
This applies to all religions and their purveyors. This may also apply to the deificiation of any set of ideas, including those held up to be "scientific".

How the domineering love to hide behind a shield of dogma!

"There are none so blind as those who will not see, none so deaf as those who will not hear."


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 May 17 - 03:57 PM

The piquant thing about this episode is that the legislation involved was brought in as a way of moving away from the assumption that Ireland should privilege Catholicism - there wouldn't have been grounds for the prosecution previously, since he made no specific reference to Catholicism. But the change was intended to give all religions the same protection, and Stephen Fry, in his comments against religion in general, seems to have come up against it.

So it's an unintended result of an effort to get away from sectarianism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 07 May 17 - 04:27 PM

If you want to get away from sectarianism, don't get involved. It is reminiscent of the U.S. Supreme court dealing with the definition of obscenity.
I miss George Carlin at times like this.
Both the movies "Dogma" and "Philomena" had important messages that provoked thought, but challenged the dignity of established religious authority. They should be nowhere near the courts in having their writing judged. Likewise the free expression of Mr. Fry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 07 May 17 - 04:45 PM

Jim Carroll, you wrote:

"Muslims are constantly coming under attack for their beliefs on this forum"

There is a difference between being criticized for certain Islamic beliefs (unspecified by you) and for being Muslim


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Thompson
Date: 07 May 17 - 05:11 PM

Felipa's right; the only correct law is to forbid incitement of (religious) hatred. That's a need that could be covered by a law making it illegal to incite hatred.

Atheist Ireland has responded positively to the investigation, since this could test this ludicrous law.

Onwards to Salem!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 07 May 17 - 05:39 PM

Fry does seem to take the usual, nasty Reductio ad absurdum view of the Bible that the atheist populists seem to like, but I don't think he should be prosecuted for it.

Might be an idea to bestow a dunce cap on his for his rudeness, though.

Fry, like Hitchens and Dawkins, redefines the Bible in idiotic terms, and then proceeds to poke fun at it.

Silly, that.

Fry asks: "Why should I respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid god who creates a world that is so full of injustice and pain?"

Are there real people who believe in such an absurd God?

The world is a mess, but it has infinite potential. It's up to us to use its potential and make it right. Believers think we have the God-given potential and the calling to do that. Non-believers may not think the potential and calling come from God, but I hope they also believe that they have the ability and the obligation to make this a better world.

A great many believers see their sacred writings as myth, a story with profound truth wrapped into it. Like, wasn't Abraham stupid to think it was a good idea to offer his son as a human sacrifice? Good thing he was prevented from doing that by a deus ex machina like a ram in the thicket, huh?

And even if people hold to a more literal interpretation of their sacred writings, what difference does it really make? When fundamentalist beliefs cause harm, that's another matter - but for the most part, belief in stories that aren't true, is really not all that harmful. Most of us have at least some misunderstandings.

Still, I hope the Gardai figure out that it's idiotic to investigate idiocy.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 May 17 - 06:11 PM

Religious belief is utterly irrational, but so is my belief that Liverpool FC will presently prove themselves to be the greatest team that ever existed. Per se, my belief is harmless, as is anyone's personal and entirely private religious belief. But the thing about this entirely irrational belief in an impossible deity is that God's adherents simply can't keep the bloody thing to themselves. They simply have to have it writ large all over our streets, in our politics, in our media and, worst of all, in our schools, and they simply must recruit their flock straight from the cradle, as evil a notion as it is possible to conceive. Therefore they should expect to be condemned and ridiculed, just as I'm ridiculed by Chelsea or Arsenal fans. If the God Squad are so sure of themselves they will laugh that off. The fact that they need "heresy laws" (and that's as mild as it gets - check out what Islam would like to do to those "guilty" of apostasy) speaks volumes about their insecurities. There's probably no God, so stop worrying and enjoy your life!

By the way, I've been in the Basilica di Santa Croce in Florence for several hours this afternoon. They could hardly drag me out at closing time. One of the most overwhelming experiences of my life. I loved the Giotto frescos and I saw the tombs of Michelangelo, Dante, Machiavelli, Gallileo and Rossini. Yesterday I spent almost four hours in tbe Ufizzi gallery. Giotto, Bellini, Michelangelo, Botticelli (yes, that Birth of Venus), Raphael, Leonardo, Caravaggio. Largely religious themes. My art, my heritage, my religion (once upon a time). I'll keep just the first two, but the third can go to hell!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 May 17 - 06:16 PM

By the way, Joe, I took a photo yesterday of Caravaggio's masterpiece of Abraham holding a very sharp blade to his son's throat. Funny you should have mentioned it! Saw another amazing painting of the slaughter of the innocents. Can't remember the artist's name. Shame the incident never happened...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 07 May 17 - 07:17 PM

By the way, Joe, I took a photo yesterday of Caravaggio's masterpiece of Abraham holding a very sharp blade to his son's throat. Funny you should have mentioned it! Saw another amazing painting of the slaughter of the innocents. Can't remember the artist's name. Shame the incident never happened...
'Slaughter of the innocents' never happened? That's easy to claim, but difficult to prove. Just as it's difficult to prove that it did happen.
But there is some evidence (the Gospels) to say it did happen. No evidence to say it didn't.

I accept that it's possible that not everything in the Bible is an historic record, but don't claim it's false with nothing to back that up, or we can claim it's all 100% true without needing anything to back it up.
Some standard of debate needs to be established.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stanron
Date: 07 May 17 - 07:25 PM

I'm in a funny position on this. I've rejected the Christian Narrative. Mainly on the basis of Constantine and later Rome's politicisation of the material. Celtic Christianity, arguably purer than the Roman version, was a non hierarchical belief system but it eventually gave way to Rome's authoritarian and hierarchical religious fascism. This system kept Europe ignorant and enslaved for almost 1000 years with the kind of brutality that crushed the Cathar and other heresies until Luther in the 1500s initiated our escape.

As a child I was educated to be a Christian. As an adult I have educated myself away from those beliefs. However I am aware of some kind of validity in the concept of the 'Spiritual Experience'. Without the need to adhere to any archaic teaching or documentation all one has to do is walk into any really old cathedral or church to realise that there is something out there that is a lot better than 'Britain's got Talent'.

I'm quite happy to let it be a mystery.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 07 May 17 - 07:47 PM

not really sure i understood the points Joe and Georgiansilver were making.

Why in your opinion is Stephen Fry an idiot?

What has he actually said Mike, that makes it blasphemy?

i was brought up very low church - a quaker , in fact, and i don't really understand these finer points of theology.

my understanding of faith was something like Hemingway on bravery. Hemingway said that the brave soldier was able to 'suspend imagination' of all the terrible things that might happen to him in battle.

Similarly the man of faith suspends his scepticism and scientific certainty when he prays.

I'm not sure why someone else's inability to do that, should that upset you so much. I can't see why that would make him an idiot, or insult one own beliefs.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 May 17 - 08:16 PM

But remember, Steve, without the stuff you reject there'd have been none of that stuff you treasure.

A world without cathedrals, churches, meeting houses, chapels, mosques, synagogues, temples, religious art of all sorts, religious literature... It'd be a poorer place to live in. I don't think it would be a happier place either, or a safer one.

When religion goes bad, it's a terrible thing, and a dangerous thing.

When food goes bad it will harm you, you might even die eating it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 08 May 17 - 02:17 AM

I am a practising Catholic. To me, blasphemy laws are appalling and anti-Christian because they are inherently divisive. Even within a religious context they are stultifying. You cannot deepen an understanding of some aspect of your faith without questioning what it means, and if doing do appears blasphemous to someone else, you can find yourself on the wrong side of the law. It has happened time and again since any sort of religion came about, and keeps resurfacing.

But that is only within the religion. To that you need to add the argumenrts for separating state and religion. And then you need consider people of other religions and none.

Blasphemy laws are inherently about limiting how people think. I can't think of many worse ideas than that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 May 17 - 02:44 AM

Well, Kevin, those great composers, artists, architects and builders would still have existed, and who knows what secular masterpieces they would have delivered themselves of had there never been religion?   As for religion going bad, it goes bad as soon as it leaves the private confines of the minds of individuals. Whether the world would be a safer place either with or without religion or its cultural offshoots is moot. It can hardly be claimed that religion has made the world safer. Still, I love the culture generated by religion, though I always think of Michelangelo being threatened and railroaded in the most unchristian way into producing his sacred masterpieces...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:03 AM

Big Al asks: Why in your opinion is Stephen Fry an idiot?

Why? Because Fry, like the most idiotic of idiotic fundamentalists, fails to the the story of Abraham and Isaac for what it is - a story. And an excellent story it is, too. It's exciting and memorable, so memorable that even atheist Fry remembers it. And it teaches a very effective lesson that the Hebrews have adhered to for all generations since: Don't practice human sacrifice, even though your neighbors are doing it.

Why? Because Fry, just like those damnable fundamentalists, confuses "factuality" with truth. Fry and the ultra-fundamentalists see an angry God who demands human sacrifice, and then pulls the chair out from Abraham just as Abe starts to sit down in his Seat of Sacrifice. And Fry and the ultrafundamentalists would have been more comfortable if God had held fast and made sure the boy got killed by his father. But the truth in the story is that people believed in human sacrifice and practiced it the world round. And in spite of this, this scripture story shows that human sacrifice was no longer acceptable. And this was a powerful message, since all the neighbors were still practicing human sacrifice.

But Fry and the ultrafundamentalists, and Hitchens and Dawkins, can only see the shallow, literalist view of the story and don't understand its implications.

If you look at the Abraham-Isaac story (and many other Bible stories) as stories, then they begin to make sense. And this, my friends, goes to show that fiction is often more truthful than fact.

But Fry and his ilk wouldn't understand it.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:10 AM

Joe, I do not think Fry is an idiot, he has long pursued an agenda against Christians.....he is rather less virulent against other religions for obvious reasons.......Christianity is an easy and benign target.

Fry is a "liberal" par excellence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mr Red
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:16 AM

A schoolfriend who became an ordained curate and presumably a vicar once referred to the "creeping infallibility of the Pope".
Like all human endeavours the prevailing norm is liable to extend into areas that are adjacent. Rules morph as understanding blossoms, and only the outsider can see the impact holistically.

And any cohort will include people who can and will exploit it for their own ends. They need the rest to defend their fiefdom.

Was it ever thus.

And can't we (the non-ovine plebs) see precisely this from Trump, May or Putin**?

** other despots are available.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:43 AM

"Only the outsider can see the impact holistically'

Not sure I agree there. Both sides only have a partial view. The great thing is the partial views are different so in combination we can see more.

For example an outsider could easily think Fry had identified a problem the religions are ignoring, whereas for example CS Lewis' "The problem of Pain" from 1940 deals with the same topics, and every church, and every religion, deals with it on a daily basis as it is the base question almost everyone going through a bereavement asks. As do secular bereavements.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:44 AM

And the thing is, the Pope himself is not where infallibility rests. Infallibillity pertains to dogmatic teachings, which are very few. The Pope promulgates those teachings after years of collaboration and discernment.

Back to Mr Fry, et al. Their disdain for ancient sacred writings is akin to the haughty disdain Europeans had for the aboriginal wisdom of the lands they conquered. We are just barely beginning to understand the value of that aboriginal wisdom.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:11 AM

I don't think those two things are akin at all, Joe. The disdain, for a start, is not for the ancient writings themselves but for the ways in which they have been misused. You can complain all you like about how they're just stories, etc., but hundreds of millions of followers of religions have been duped into thinking they are literally true, and that's the way the control freakery of religions' hierarchies likes it to work. Why, I'd remind you that even the historical existence of Jesus himself is a matter of considerable doubt. Virtually the only solid references to him are those made by his own proselytisers. Not one unequivocal mention of him in the masses of contemporary Roman writings. And look how Nigel jumped down my throat for suggesting that the massacre of the innocents didn't happen. Your somewhat vicious attack on the people you call ultra-fundamentalists betrays your own insecurities more than anything. All we are asking for is evidence. Now excuse me as I have many more Florentine religious glories to see!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:21 AM

Incidentally, the wiki entry on the massacre of the innocents makes very uncomfortable reading for bible literalists. Looks like it was just a bit of bad-mouthing of Herod for scriptural fulfilment purposes. Not nice. Mind you, he wasn't really a very nice chap.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:55 AM

interesting Joe....i haven't seen where Fry talks about Abraham.

I'm pretty sure he's capable of understanding the concept of metaphor. he's very clever - i can't understand half of what he goes on about.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 05:55 AM

"he has long pursued an agenda against Christians."
No he hasn't - he's pursued an agenda against what he judges to be irrational beliefs and the way they are used, socially and politically - about time more people did
Every time you spout your hatred for "liberals" only underlines your detestation for humanity
Please keep it up
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:26 AM

"Their disdain for ancient sacred writings is akin to the haughty disdain Europeans had for the aboriginal wisdom of the lands they conquered"

I don't agree with this at all. Fry, like most of us in Europe and the US were raised as christians and our ancestors lived in countries that have been christian for well over a millennia and our cultures are infused with it to a very deep and profound level.

Fry's questioning of the philosophy of christian thought on god is fully justified and he has as much right as anyone to articulate how he feels, especially if some asks him; he is as much a part of our culture as the bishops that offer their views on Sunday morning current affairs talk shows, whether we approve of him or not. We all have a right to question.

Using the oppression of native peoples as an analogue to the comments made by a TV celebrity betrays a misunderstanding of not only the context and content of Fry's comments, but much more besides.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:30 AM

Fry raises the issue of suffering for believers, as if it has not been challenging our faith for centuries.
No-one discusses and agonises over the implications for the faithful.
Nothing wrong with Fry reminding us of it.

Like most Christians I also have a problem with the vengeful and spiteful Old Testament God.
The New Testament reveals a God of forgiveness and love.
Nothing wrong with Fry reminding us of those issues either.

I do not believe in blasphemy laws, and am aware that they are used to persecute Christians in Pakistan and elsewhere.

Religions should have no right not to be mocked, and no immunity from offence, but please remember that you will offend many very nice people who do not deserve to be gratuitously offended.

I do object to the singling out of Christians for mockery just because it is safe to.
It is the mark of the bully and the coward to attack only those who will not fight back.

Jim,
Muslims are constantly coming under attack for their beliefs on this forum

I challenge that claim and ask for an example.
Religions are constantly coming under attack for their beliefs on this forum, not least by you, but the only religion specifically attacked has been Christianity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:32 AM

Correction.

No-one discusses and agonises over the implications for the faithful more than we do ourselves.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:44 AM

"It is the mark of the bully and the coward to attack only those who will not fight back."

I don't think many bully christians; most of us were brought up in the tradition and know and understand it very well indeed but have come to the conclusion (for whatever reasons) that its influence within our society is not necessarily beneficial to everyone or desirable for everyone. Many of us did a LOT of thinking about this when we were younger.

Also, I don't think christianity is singled out particularly. In the modern age, the rise of secularism has meant people can establish moral codes structured around compassion, love and the value of life without having to involved a god/gods.

Just out of interest, why does god allow such appalling suffering?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:59 AM

'Just out of interest, why does god allow such appalling suffering?'

yes when the Younger Generation whistled I was Kaiser Bill's Batman, on the Rolf Harris Show - such thoughts often came to me.

Fear not beyond the dark night of the soul there are sunny days.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:10 AM

A little more than 'Old Testament' spitefulness
The church has echoed that spitefulness down the ages, from the Crusades to the modern day causes it has espoused ans supported.
Some of religion's worst enemies come from within the church - rapist clergymen, supporters of dictators and torturers, hypocritical self-declared "Christians" who fail to display a shred of Christian values - particularly love and tolerance.
Thye tend to be the ones who complain the loudest about 'persecution' when they are often the worst of persecutors and they do so loudly declaring their 'Christianity'.
Look to thyself - as the scriptures say
Beliefs, when privately and freely held, are a personal matter; when they are forced on generation after generation, at an age preceding rational thought, they become poisonously dangerous - brainwashing on an international scale.
It is time the church as a body was totally divorced from the State - politically, educationally..... and in every other way
We have a nonsensical situation here in Ireland where a group of somewhat unchristian but extremely wealthy nuns are being given the right to run one of the country's most important maternity hospitals - amid loud howls of protest from Christian Irish people who see the conflicts and conflicts of such a situation.
Hopefully, it it yet another case of the Church shooting itself in the foot - it really can't have manyt feet left.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:15 AM

"I challenge that claim and ask for an example."
Not again Keith
You know very well who and what I am referring to
Wear your badge with pride
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:33 AM

The church still has a stranglehold on Irish legislation, especially in maternity matters and abortion.

http://parentsforchoice.ie/the-8th-amendment-and-maternity-care/

I am surprised no one has tested these laws under EU human rights legislation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:39 AM

Early days yet
The faithful are still getting to grips with their new-found freedom
The gay marriage issue was the first big step forward - a resounding victory for common sense and humanity over dogma.
The St Vincent's issue is bound to be a testing ground on the rights of women to take control over their own lives.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:40 AM

The assumption that the fanaticism and bigotry which can distort the words and actions of "believers" is founded on childhood indoctrination needs to be examined critically. Typically it can be the reverse - it's among the people who have been drawn to a belief system, or drawn back to it, in adult life or adolescence, that you are likely to find the fanatics and bigots.

Typically in the accounts of jihadist terrorists from this country you find the same picture of a past in which they were either "bad Muslims", or not Muslims at all. I think you'd find the same pattern in relation to many belief or loyalty systems. Even among football supporters or political activists. Or those who are most vocal in attacking their own root community.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:42 AM

Massacre of the Innocents from 6:25 !!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 08 May 17 - 08:52 AM

I remember Sir David Attenborough (a man I greatly admire) saying that he found it incomprehensible that a so-called loving God had created a certain fly (I forget which species) whose only way of reproducing was for its larva to grow in people's eyes. He cited a child who had this particular parasite, which was eating away his eyeball.
He started out as a Christian I believe, but these musings led him to lose his faith.
I wouldn't call these remarks 'blasphemy', yet they aren't very different in implication from those uttered by Stephen Fry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 09:13 AM

Jim,
Not again Keith
You know very well who and what I am referring to
Wear your badge with pride

If you mean me, you are wrong.
Unlike you I have never criticised any religion or its believers in any post.

Feel free to prove me wrong, but you will find nothing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 09:18 AM

"I remember Sir David Attenborough (a man I greatly admire)"

He's 91 today! A truly great man and a massive influence on me, especially when I was a boy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 09:19 AM

No fucking up yet another thread with your Muslim cultural implants Keith
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 08 May 17 - 09:37 AM

I didn't know it was his Birthday today! In which case, Many Happy Returns Sir David.
A friend and I met him at a book-signing in a store in Norwich. He had a huge queue to deal with, but remained charming and delightful for hours. He just radiates goodness. (I have a massive crush on him; can you tell? :) )


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 09:59 AM

Love him, love his animals Sen
Hope you don't mind waking up next to a Kimodo Dragon!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 10:03 AM

Komodo.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 08 May 17 - 10:06 AM

I'll be happy to wake up to any kind of animal as long as he was there as well! (Perhaps not a giant spider though...)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 10:07 AM

Jim,
No fucking up yet another thread with your Muslim cultural implants Keith

Jim, I have never spoken of any such a thing.
I think you refer to a thread where I said, repeatedly, that Islam was not in any way an issue in the offending under discussion.

I can produce many quotes to support that.
You have nothing to support your false claim.

If I have ever denigrated any faith, QUOTE ME!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 May 17 - 10:08 AM

Also, wasn't there a bloody long time between the speech and the accusation of blasphemy? Why now, and not then?

Also, Big Al, go Quakes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 11:21 AM

"Islam was not in any way an issue in the offending under discussion."
Nope Keith - I'm referring to your outrageous statement that All Pakistanis Muslim males are culturally implanted to have underage sex
Muslim referred a religion last time I looked it up and Pakistani referred to a race - making your shitty statement an attack on both race and religion - otherwise why use either term?
Finished here Keith
- Stephen Fry is much more interesting and I have yet to hear him make racist comments about anybody, though I admit, he's not quite as entertaining as your antics attempts at being a clown
By-ee
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 11:35 AM

Jim,
"All Pakistanis Muslim males" was the description given in the question put to me.

The descriptor "Muslim" was irrelevant as I had already stated several times that Islam was not a factor in that offending. I just repeated the wording used in the question I was responding to.


I have never denigrated any religion or its followers.
If I have, QUOTE ME!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 11:39 AM

Jim, I detest your dredging this issue up every couple of weeks.

I have rebutted your false accusations enough times.
When will you stop making them?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 08 May 17 - 11:51 AM

Fry and his ilk are not interested in the blasphemy laws, their overriding intention is to bring down the Church, which they see as the last bastion of social conservatism. They are outraged that the Church still refuses to accept homosexual "marriage", that is what drives Fry and most woolly headed "liberals" who seem to admire him.
If he were only an idiot like Joe says there may have been an excuse, but he is much worse. A menace to society who would deprive decent people of their faith.

I notice the Mudcat "liberals" confine their faith bashing to the Christian faith.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:04 PM

"I have rebutted your false accusations enough times."
Denial is not the same as rebuttal
Even the Phrophet was a Paedo, according to you
"Paedophilia is not endorsed, but the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) took a child bride."
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:06 PM

"their overriding intention is to bring down the Church"

Ha ha! Ake, you are priceless.


"I notice the Muscat "liberals" confine their faith bashing to the Christian faith."

In my case, because I was raised a christian and therefore have as good an understanding of it as most in this country. However, I suspect they're all baseless with the possible exception of magic, but not for supernatural reasons.


"They are outraged that the Church still refuses to accept homosexual "marriage""

Ah, the gentleman doth protest too much. Again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:11 PM

A menace to society who would deprive decent people of their faith.

People cannot be deprived of faith. They either have it or they don't. You are, as ever, talking complete drivel.

I notice the Mudcat "liberals" confine their faith bashing to the Christian faith.

I have often said that people can believe in whatever imaginary friend they want as long as they don't expect me to do the same. How is that restricted to Christianity?

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: olddude
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:21 PM

What does steven fry.. Make mine a steak please


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:24 PM

That is the type of irreverence we should encourage everywhere - thanks Dan :-)

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:30 PM

"Komodo."
Thanks for that Stu - I knew that
You got off lighhtly there, I nearly wrote Kimono - thinking about something else entirely!
"their overriding intention is to bring down the Church"
Any organisation that facilitates and connives in the rape of children for many decades, needs bringing down - or at least confined to a place they can no longer do any harm
You are dishonest when you claim we confine our bashing to the Christian Church - I have always made a point that the mixture of politics and all religions is a toxic one
The Chritian church is just the one that has affected our lives for all our lives. Give ius a break Ake (nice bit of alliteration), you are not going to plouter your way around the Stone-Age on this as well, are you.
Organised religion has more than proved itself untrustworthy and it's about time that it was stopped from doing the damage it has.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 08 May 17 - 12:47 PM

That's rubbish Jim...and you know it, the dictates of Islam and Christianity are as different as night and day.
The killing of homosexuals, discrimination against women, FGM.....many more, but not a peep from you fuckers.....wouldn't want to be thought racist I suppose.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 08 May 17 - 01:10 PM

" "Liberals" cannot conceive of "hate speech" towards Christians because, in their eyes, Christians always deserve it"

Ann Coulter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 01:48 PM

"Ann Coulter."
Couldn't find a better expert on HATE SPEECH
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 08 May 17 - 01:48 PM

Jim it has been rebuttal not denial, and every few weeks for SIX YEARS!
Will you ever stop?

"Paedophilia is not endorsed, but the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) took a child bride."

So what? Child marriage was legal everywhere then and was here until comparatively recent times.

Romeo's Juliet was 12, as was Henry Tudor's mother when she conceived.
Joseph's Mary would be under 14 at conception and possibly just 12.

I have never denigrated any religion or its followers.
That is why you can not quote me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 08 May 17 - 01:57 PM

"Thanks for that Stu - I knew that"

Just being a pedantic old git!



"Ann Coulter."

Quoting Ann Coulter in this context is a good a bit of trolling as you'll see anywhere on the internet. Hats off to you Ake.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 May 17 - 02:24 PM

As distinct from Joan Bakewell - Anne Coulter - THE LYNCHING MAN'S CRUMPET
"Jim it has been rebuttal not denial, and every few weeks for SIX YEARS!
Will you ever stop?"
Not while I have breath Keith - live with it
"So what? Child marriage was legal everywhere then and was here until comparatively recent times"
Then why put it up as an argument about child rape?
Your choice
"That is why you can not quote me."
Just have and you've just confirmed it
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:21 PM

The problem with blasphemy is obvious: One man's blasphemy is another man's holy writ.
In the United States the Constitution prohibits Congress from enacting legislation regarding religion. That was a radical principal when it was written down in setting up a nation. Most nations of the world in one way or another favor a state religion, the Communists not excepted, because they treat Communism as THE state religion.
Reading down this thread, which I find quite enjoyable, I keep remembering Thomas Paine's famous riposte. After he said, "I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death". And when others round him hollered "Treason!" he responded: "If this be treason, make the most of it!"
What goes through my mind is, on Stephen Fry's behalf: "If this be blasphemy, make the most of it!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: mayomick
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:32 PM

Irish Independent two hours ago :
Stephen Fry blasphemy probe dropped after gardaí fail to find 'substantial number of outraged people'


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: mayomick
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:33 PM

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/stephen-fry-blasphemy-probe-dropped-after-garda-fail-to-find-substantial-number-of-outraged


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 08 May 17 - 03:43 PM

I remember when the film 'The Last Temptation of Christ' came out, (Scorsese, 1988) there were howls of "Blasphemy!" and many Christians were outraged. However, the film seemed to me to be exploring sensitively a 'what if' idea, and I found it very interesting and moving.

Mohammed's marriage to a young girl doesn't necessarily make him a paedophile. He advocated taking vulnerable women under one's wing in marriage as a way of protecting them. A young girl like that would have had no sexual duties until she was older.

Before getting all het up about religious remarks, art, opinions etc it might be worth reflecting a bit about the context, facts and motivation of the 'perpetrator'. Unless deliberate provocation and hate-mongering is intended, it may be better to let it pass. That way, one isn't giving it an airing!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:03 PM

"stephen-fry-blasphemy-probe-dropped-after-garda-fail-to-find-substantial-number-of-outraged"

Clearly a very small number of Irish idiots!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:13 PM

That was funny - nobody outraged.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:34 PM

Sounds as if it's time for 'Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells' and friends to rally to the cause!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:53 PM

As I said earlier, Fry's B grade drama has nothing to do with blasphemy laws.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 08 May 17 - 05:18 PM

But the law remains on the statute books...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 08 May 17 - 06:00 PM

Stephen Fry is a much loved presence on the English entertainment scene. For his portrayal of Oscar Wilde alone, his Golden Globe nomination as best actor makes nonsense of charging him with B grade dramatics.

if you have a point Ake, make it. if not stop showing yourself up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 May 17 - 07:16 PM

Pretty good in Blackadder too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 May 17 - 08:55 PM

As for the story of the Massacre of the Innocents, the tragic truth is that there is nothing unusual about things like that happening in our own time. Sometimes it even gets into the paper eventually, often enough it doesn't even do that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 May 17 - 01:29 AM

"As I said earlier, Fry's B grade drama has nothing to do with blasphemy laws."
You were the first to introduce that aspect into this discussion with a spitefully personal attack on his character and an uninformed critical attack of his abilities
Neither accurate or informative
"Fry is a worthless character, vicious and egotistical in the extreme.
A product of media hype, still living on the back of a few cameo roles from twenty years ago......completely irrelevant."
It appears you have done what Blackadder failed to do and shot yourself in the foot in your attempts to divert this away from a religion you claim not to believe in.
It seems to me that your defence of the religion you (claim not to) favour enables you to take vicious swipes at other brands on the market
One of the greatest threats on this planet today comes from religions that are supposed to offer spiritual guidance but, in the hands of zealots and fanatics, hang like a sword of Damocles over us all.
It's long overdue that they were all put in their rightful place as something people can turn to for guidance and comfort (if they are inclined that way) and not an imposed shadow that hangs over believer and non believer alike -
"Now away with all your superstitions" - as the song says.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 May 17 - 01:49 AM

But there is no evidence that Herod carried that out, Kevin! It's just made-up biblical nonsense, mentioned by one evangelist only who was writing long after Christ was dead (if he ever existed at all). I suppose that doing Herod a disservice doesn't outrage us much, as he was such a murderous git anyway. But it still doesn't turn a scripture-fulfilling myth into the truth, and bad-mouthing a bad man doesn't exactly get us nearer to any deeper truths either.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 03:05 AM

The two "Infancy Narratives," Luke and Matthew, are very different from each other. I haven't seen much speculation on the sources of these stories. They follow the legendary language of the stories of the births of kings, and are generally thought to have been made up to point to the significance of the event of the birth of Jesus, an event whose significance was not known at the time it happened. Matthew builds his five-part narrative on five verses from the Hebrew Scriptures that he sees as explanatory of the significance of this child Jesus. The narrative is very methodically constructed, and parallels the five-part outline of the rest of Matthew, which is built around five "sermons." Whatever you believe about it, Matthew is an interesting piece of literature.
Luke builds his infancy narrative on five canticles (songs) that are loosely based on quotations from the Hebrew Scriptures. Luke's writing is the best Greek in the New Testament, and is of high literary value even in translation.

As far as I can tell, the people of the time were quite aware that these narratives, were fictional works built on a very sketchy collection of facts. It's only within the last hundred years or so, that we've have the slavish literalism of the fundamentalists. Before that, believers viewed these stories as open to embellishment and the "folk process."

The story of the Holy Innocents mirrors the story of the story of Pharaoh's slaughter of Hebrew children at the birth of Moses. So, my guess would be that the story of the Holy Innocents is fictional, but still of great value.

The sacred stories of most cultures have profound value. Those who ridicule them, ridicule all those who hold those stories sacred.

Up above, Big Al said he hadn't heard where Fry talks about Abraham. I gathered from Tunesmith's original message in this thread that Fry had ridiculed the Abraham-Isaac story, but maybe I misunderstood the post.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 09 May 17 - 04:22 AM

The Governor of Jakarta is starting a 2 year jail sentence for blasphemy.
BBC 24 minutes ago,
"Mr Purnama was accused of blasphemy for comments he made during a pre-election speech in September 2016.
He implied that Islamic leaders were trying to trick voters by using a verse in the Koran to argue that Muslims should not vote for a non-Muslim leader.
His remarks, which were widely shared in an edited video, sparked outrage among religious hard-liners. They staged regular large rallies calling for him to face trial."
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-39853280


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 04:41 AM

It's hard to believe that any modern nation would have anti-blasphemy laws. Nonetheless, I do think that blasphemy can be considered to be unpleasant, unkind, and impolite.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Thompson
Date: 09 May 17 - 05:16 AM

France does it right: the law proscribes hate or violence against, and slander or libel against, people due to their membership of a religious group, nationality, ethnic group, race, sexual orientation or handicap.

That's what Ireland should have.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 09 May 17 - 05:42 AM

If the given story of Christianity was blemish free the Catholic church would not have maintained such a stranglehold, for so many decades, on the material released from the dead sea scrolls . Whatever the fact or fiction is of those events back in the middle east over 2k years ago, the reality is that large parts of modern Christianity was based on a hijacked narrative and agenda of the Pauline heresy, massaged and focused on appealing to the gentile Roman authorities who held sway over large parts of the Middle East at that time. The Magdelen controversy and the disputed status of James are another two aspects of Christian doctrine where the given story is questionable. Another is the disputed marital status of Jesus the man. The gospels frequently raise more questions than they answer. Attempts to create a universal narrative accepted by all resulted in seven Ecumenical Councils. They all failed to a varying extent.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 09 May 17 - 06:44 AM

"Those who ridicule them, ridicule all those who hold those stories sacred."

This statement which could apply to science too, but there are those on this forum who have denigrated the work of scientists. People of honest intent who strive to make the world a better place by seeking to understand it for the common good all the people of the human race regardless of their religious belief, political opinion or the nation they belong too. I guess the difference is scientists expect to question and be questioned, whereas religious folk see questioning (and piss-taking) as a personal assault on their beliefs; I can understand this to a degree though as we all become defensive when our own worldview are questioned and I can find it hard to be objective when dealing with (or example) religious extremists.

Also, not all religions are the same. Comparing the revealed religions with those of many indigenous people is false equivalence. The more naturistic belief systems (such as those held by the aboriginal folk of Australia or the First Nations people of the Americas) emphasise humankind as needing a deep respect of the land as common treasury and a profound and personal interconnectedness to nature. This rather than the far more simplistic, "dominion" that the god of desert tribesmen gives to his acolytes and separates them (in their minds) from all other life on the planet; that is a dangerous, destructive and profoundly misguided idea.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Thompson
Date: 09 May 17 - 08:12 AM

Surely the point is that religion should be private and personal, not national? Laïcité works best.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 09 May 17 - 08:43 AM

Those who ridicule them, ridicule all those who hold those stories sacred.

I don't buy that for a second, it's that kind of nonsense that lead to the Charlie Hebdo killings among others.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:06 AM

Yes Bobad, but stick to just ridiculing Christians and Jews and nothing bad will happen.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mo the caller
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:20 AM

"
Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Georgiansilver - PM
Date: 07 May 17 - 01:12 PM
I don't force my beliefs or Faith upon anyone... why should he be allowed to blaspheme mine~?

But the very tenets of the Christian faith blaspheme Judaism. The law is nonsense. Has the English version been repealed or just allowed to lapse (until some offended believer uses it).

And reading the report it sounds as if SF was asked a direct question which he answered by stating what he thought about the Christian (hypothetical) god.

Yes, inciting hatred should be banned. Some other antireligious statements may be bad manners, but not illegal.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:33 AM

Yes Bobad, but stick to just ridiculing Christians and Jews and nothing bad will happen.

This is on the basis that only Islam does bad things in the name of religion is it?

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:37 AM

Keith, I don't equate religion, which is but a collection of ideas, with the people who practice it. No idea is beyond scrutiny, scepticism and yes, even ridicule. To quote Maajid Nawaz: "No idea is above scrutiny and no people are beneath dignity."


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:05 AM

This is on the basis that only Islam does bad things in the name of religion is it?

Ok Dave, here's an exercise for you. First burn a Bible in a public place in London then burn a Koran in a public place in London then come back and let us know how that went for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:13 AM

First burn a Bible in a public place in London then burn a Koran in a public place in London then come back and let us know how that went for you.

This is on the basis that only Islam does bad things in the name of religion is it?

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:33 AM

Wriggle, wriggle, wriggle!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:43 AM

"why should he be allowed to blaspheme mine"
Apples and oranges Mo
You may not force your beliefs on others but the State does which is what this is about
Wan't a list of the invective poured on the heads of atheists bu=y the various churches?
We are now debating in Ireland whether the fact that children applying for school positions are now having to provide baptismal certificates before their names are even considered
Couple this with the old Jesuit saying "Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man " and you have brain-washing big-time
The shortage of non-faith schools has reached the human-rights abuse level.90-odd percent of out primary schools are run by the church
A couple of years ago a woman who died had been told by a member of staff as an explanation, "Ireland is a Catholic country"
In the latest controversy over the ownership of Ireland's main maternity hospital, we have been informed by the church hierarchy that the nuns running it will be subject to Church rules rather than State law.
You may not consider that forcing beliefs or Faith upon anyone.......
What gets he here is the behaviour of some of those self-described 'Christians' who are whining the loudest.
I have many relatives who are Chrisian, either in belief or in practice.
I live in a Christian country surrounded by Christian people and hve spent decades viting their homes, colecing their songs and enjoying their company
One of the fond memories Ihave is the splash of holy water on the back of my neck, having neglected to bless myself from the little container hanging by the door - a generous gesture wishing to strangers "good Luck" as we left
In several arguments I have had I have been brought to the point of screaming, "how dare you inhuman hate-filled bigots describe yourself as 'Christian' when you don't display the slightest sign of Christian generosity, humanity, humility..... or any of the qualities I have come to understand as Christian values.
We've had a display from such hypocrites a little higher up this correspondence - if the individuals concerned, by Jack's a kipper!
It is the kind of mealy-mouthed hypocrisy of those who whinge about being persecuted yet are happy to launch themselves on persecution-sprees on religions and ethnic minorities on forums such as this
There's not a bad example of this going on right now by some of our class Islamophobes.
God spare us all from such bigots
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:46 AM

Meanwhile, in the real world:

Jakarta Governor Found Guilty of Blasphemy


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 09 May 17 - 11:42 AM

It seems poobad is at a loss for words again.

Dribble, dribble, dribble?

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 09 May 17 - 12:27 PM

Bobad, I agree.
Jim,
persecution-sprees on religions and ethnic minorities on forums such as this
There's not a bad example of this going on right now by some of our class Islamophobes.


I challenge that and ask for an example.
The single one you produced before was over 6 years old of me, and I had repeatedly made it clear that I did NOT believe the offending under discussion could be blamed on religion.

Unlike you I have never denigrated any religion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 May 17 - 12:55 PM

"I challenge that and ask for an example."
Not again Keith!!
The six year old one will do for a start - the worst example of cultural/racial hatred ever to appear on this forum
It doesn't matter how long ago you put it up - you continue to maintain that view, you have certainly never withdrawn it, and you've blamed others for holding it yet never produced anybody else who has stated it publicly
We've dealt with your describing the prophet as a pedophile
More recently you have added Travellers and Irish children to your list of hates.
It is this behaviour that gets any religion a bad name, and pathetic attempts to defend Christian behaviour only compounds that behaviour.
We are responsible for what happens in our own society and really do not have to answer for that of others.
You had little trouble in identifying who I was referring to
My case rests - Christians have little room to criticise others until they begin to get their own house in order - the first steps to doing so are to recognise the mess it is in.
People who live in grass houses shouldn't stow thrones (as the old joke goes)
You ask for an example - try "Yes Bobad, but stick to just ridiculing Christians and Jews and nothing bad will happen"
The last word on this to you here - I'm too old to wrestle worms
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 09 May 17 - 01:16 PM

Jim.
"Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man " and you have brain-washing big-time.

Having had a Jesuit secondary education and knowing many that also had a primary education from Jesuits as well, I can assure you the brainwashing is a myth. What the Jesuits did provide, for those that were willing, was a superb education.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 09 May 17 - 01:20 PM


The six year old one will do for a start - the worst example of cultural/racial hatred ever to appear on this forum


I said I knew nothing about the culture.
The ascribing to culture came from people who were of that culture, Left Wing politicians or both.

I just said I believed them because of their knowledge and in the absence of any other theory.
No hatred against any demographic was expressed.
If it was, quote it.

you continue to maintain that view, you have certainly never withdrawn it,

I have refuted it every few weeks for over six years!
Every time you dredge it up.

More recently you have added Travellers and Irish children to your list of hates.

Completely untrue, and your claim was about persecution of religions.

and pathetic attempts to defend Christian behaviour

Produce an example Jim. You just made that up.

Christians have little room to criticise others

What Christian has criticised any other faith here?

The last word on this to you here - I'm too old to wrestle worms

It is clear this is a personal vendetta.
If you make accusations against me, you should provide examples.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 09 May 17 - 01:25 PM

"Completely untrue, and your claim was about persecution of religions."
No it wan't Keith - it was about unchristian Christians
The rest is old news too well established to enter into here
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 02:17 PM

I think I may have confused what was said by some in the Forum here, with what Fry actually said. Reading the article (click) closely, I find that most of what Fry has to say is simply a less-pious rephrasing of questions theologians have been asking for centuries. From what I see in the article, I don't think what Fry has to say is "ridicule." Does anyone have links to other things Fry has to say on the subject?

On the other hand, I do think that much of what I've seen from Charlie Hebdo WAS blasphemy, or at least ridicule. As I said above, I do think that blasphemy can be considered to be unpleasant, unkind, and impolite - not an excuse for violent attacks, but certainly not an invitation to respectful dialogue.

I think this world has a great need for respectful dialogue - and we don't get there by insulting those who think differently, or by insulting that which they hold sacred.

But reading the article a second time, I kinda liked what Fry had to say.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 09 May 17 - 03:41 PM

I've just been having a look at several of the Charlie Hebdo cartoons, and they really are disgraceful, and extremely inflammatory in my opinion. Some depict the Prophet naked, asking if a photographer 'likes his arse', and others show him bent down with his genitals on view. This greatly offends me, and I'm not a Muslim (although married to one) and would obviously incite anyone with a religious belief in Islam to great anger.
I'm not saying it justifies the resulting terrorism, but I do think it's a perfect example of 'Incitement to Religious Hatred'. It isn't the same thing at all as Fry's remarks which, as you say Joe, are merely musings, albeit not very tactfully expressed.
I'm sure most people would see the difference.
'Blasphemy' is one thing, and is rude and hurtful, but Inciting Religious Hatred is quite another. The former should provoke condemnation and rebuke. But the other should (and is, in UK) punishable by Law.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 09 May 17 - 04:40 PM

Inciting Religious Hatred is quite another.

Perhaps this should be taken up with Twitler ans the Trumpists.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 09 May 17 - 06:01 PM

I seem to recall that Charlie hebdo are equal opportunity mockers: including Christians in their "art'. As for Fry , I don't favour prosecution . Why turn him into a martyr !?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 09 May 17 - 06:07 PM

I appreciate some of your insight into the synoptic gospels joe . However I wonder what your source us to say that believers in the past took the stories as not factual . Was not a main thrust of Matthew validation of the messiah by fulfilment of scripture ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 09 May 17 - 06:35 PM

I'm perfectly willing to ridicule anyone's ridiculous beliefs, no matter how sacredly held, if they [the beliefs] are ridiculous.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stanron
Date: 09 May 17 - 06:48 PM

It is only since about 1500 that the Bible was no longer only read in Latin or Greek by the educated clergy. Before that the common man only knew what he was told by his local priest. The concept that he would interpret this information in some way as anything other than 'Gospel Truth' would have been treated as heresy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 May 17 - 07:58 PM

Well I'm home from Florence now. Nice work today, EasyJet. It's been a long day, starting with a visit to the Accademia gallery first thing this morning to see Michelangelo's David. The rest of the gallery pales next to that masterwork - the Uffizi gallery is much better, positively mind-blowing, the ground floor of the Bargello gallery is stunning and the Santa Croce basilica is sublime. Back to David, as fine a work of art as has ever been produced, the theme thoroughly biblical, thoroughly Christian, beautifully presented and displayed, no need to jostle for a great view of him despite the crowds. Florence is all crowds. It was clear that a large number of tourists were sufficiently obsessed with David's elegant genitalia and excellently-muscled buttocks to persuade them to get as many selfies as possible featuring themselves next to these impressive attributes of his, pointing at them and pulling appropriately eye-popping faces. Come to think of it, in four days of taking in hundreds, if not thousands, of religious works of art, I've seen some magnificently-benippled breasts, arses as pert as you like and even a fair number of lovely external ladies' front bottoms. Gosh, and so many naked putti! Oddly, only once did I see a crucified Jesus sans strategic loincloth, his family jewels proudly on view, and that was on a small wooden crucifix attributed to none other than Michelangelo. Mischievous fellow he was, I reckon, a twinkle in his eye. He even managed to annoy his patrons, those awful Medicis, by depicting Bacchus in a sculpture as a somewhat tipsy student-type rather than the somewhat effeminate, more usual depiction of him. I thought that the Bacchus was a towering masterpiece and concluded that those pope-generating Medicis had no taste.

The thing is that depicting religious figures as real human beings, naked, vulnerable, flawed, often less than well-endowed, frequently looking rather vacant as they gaze heavenward with clasped hands, has been a sine qua non of religious art. They say that art conceals art, but great art also conceals ridicule. And you can bet your life that the selfie brigade of today have had their equivalent all down the ages. So don't give me all that precious stuff about ridiculing the Prophet. Belief in impossible deities and their hangers-on (all those bloody angels!) is highly irrational and has served humanity extremely badly. Trying to protect those beliefs, or sheltering them from the disrespect and ridicule that they so richly deserve, is a waste of energy. There's probably no God, so stop worrying and enjoy yourself instead!

But the art is different...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 08:16 PM

So, Steve, this is a question I've had most of my life and I couldn't see well enough to get a definite answer when I was in Florence: Was Michelangelo's David circumcised?

Here's a clip from Fry on religion that seems to be the basis of the article about Fry that was mentioned in the first post:But my answer to Fry's complaints about God, is that people are here on earth with the ability to solve the problems. Why don't the people use their god-given abilities to fix the problems? And the thing that gets me, is that all these critics use a fundamentalist view of God as basis for their criticism.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 09 May 17 - 08:56 PM

people are here on earth with the ability to solve the problems.

Those problems that "God" created, Joe?

Haven't you got that hind end foremost?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:12 PM

Well, yeah, Greg, that's correct if you happen to believe in a God that writes the script and that we are all puppets acting out that script.

I think that's a rather shallow view of God, and I do not subscribe to it. But it's that shallow view that Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins and so many others subscribe to. Very few believers hold that view of God. But many of the unbelievers do - and then they attack the absurd god that is their own creation.

I believe the problems you speak of evolved, due to both accident and logical consequences; and that we have both the ability and the obligation to redirect that evolution.

-Joe-

And I still want to hear what Steve has to say about David and circumcision. David cut off a lot of Philistine foreskins - what about his own? [1 Samuel 18:27]


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:19 PM

I took a lot of photos of David, Joe, and I can confirm that he is gloriously possessed of penis intactus. Funnily enough, in a coffee bar in the Piazza San Marco this morning, just after our visit to the Accademia, scoffing our focaccia capreses washed down with an uplifting coffee as only the Italians know how (we had to hurry as we needed to get to the airport at Pisa - luckily, Musso's legacy of the trains running on time still holds), I saw this bloke that reminded me strongly of you. It got even worse when I heard him speak to discover that he was an American. For a minute I thought I was busted. Only then did I realise that he wasn't good looking enough.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 May 17 - 09:23 PM

Massive straw man in your response to Greg there, Joe. We prefer to leave the God constructions to you. Mind you, was that straw man circumcised?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 May 17 - 10:10 PM

Well, Steve, Kevin McGrath looks an awful lot like me. So does Charley Noble. If I happened to see either of them in Florence, I would be horribly enswamped in an identity crisis, and I wouldn't know which one was me. Facebook often confuses me with Charles Clark, but that's not true. I'm far better-looking.

I'm glad you confirmed my suspicions about Michelangelo's David. Since I had eight years of "custody of the eyes" training in seminary, I spent most of my time looking at David's face....

Yeah, I couldn't quite deal with Greg's puppet-master God. I'm sorry he got bogged down in God-constructing like that. My ideas on God are far more foggy and likely to change at any moment - I like it that way. I suppose I ought to admit that in an earlier day, I might well have been burned at the stake for my theological concepts. I did get fired for said concepts, but I'm still alive and relatively unscathed.

I'm of the opinion that for most questions worth considering, there are myriad valid answers. What bugs me about Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins and their ilk is that they, like fundamentalist Christians and Muslims and whatever, are obsessed about being in possession and control of "the right answer," and that everyone else must be wrong. They're like that annoying kid in school who always had to be right. I'd much rather consider a wide variety of possibilities - and one of those possibilities is always in the context of the possible non-existence of God. Another is in the context of a biblical literalist concept of God, but I prefer the atheist alternative.

But that being said, I'll accept your word on it that David wasn't circumcised....and will maintain custody of my eyes.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 10 May 17 - 04:01 AM

Mrrzy,
I'm perfectly willing to ridicule anyone's ridiculous beliefs, no matter how sacredly held, if they [the beliefs] are ridiculous.

Why?
Does it matter to you if some otherwise nice, inoffensive person believes something that you consider ridiculous?
What do you gain by ridiculing them?
Why be "willing" to ridicule them?
Live and let live as harmoniously as possible I say.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 10 May 17 - 05:46 AM

Nice letter in the Irish Times this morning

Blasphemy and the law
Sir, - As a gesture of solidarity with Stephen Fry, I quote a sentence from my book, The God Delusion: "The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."
Every one of these adjectives is amply documented, with full biblical citations, in Dan Bark¬er's book, God: The Most Unpleasant Character in All Fiction.
I shall be giving a public lecture in the National Concert Hall, Dublin, on June 12th, and I shall therefore be available for arrest on a charge of blasphemy.-Yours, etc,
Richard Dawkins, New College, Oxford.

Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 06:01 AM

Well, Joe, I took around thirty photos of the statue from all angles, close-up and full-figure (I've deleted the duffers now but still have around ten lovely images), but I still had to look back at them in order to answer your question. I suppose I was seeing the bigger picture! I don't think that Dawkins et al et Shaw et al have the answers. I think we see that you probably have the wrong answers and we challenge you to verify yours with evidence. Neither Dawkins nor the other alleged absolutists have ever said that there is no God. We think it's a very intriguing concept, for several reasons, but would like to see your real evidence. Note the word "real." Talk of scripture fulfilment, or saying it's true because it's in the Bible (hi, Nigel!) isn't evidence. Also, note the word "arguably" in Jim's link. It isn't us who are the absolutists. We're just your awkward inconveniences.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 10 May 17 - 06:22 AM

I have to confess to being a little envious of you Steve...

Mrs Stu and I have been discussing a trip to Italy for some time, and I'd love to see Rome, perhaps with Florence and Sicily (for a trip up Etna and local fossils) on the itinerary too. I'd dearly love to see the art and architecture of the place. Oh, and the food.

Ah well, one day if the shilling star ever shines again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 06:49 AM

It's only in the last three or four years that we've started going on holiday to Italy and Andalucia. For the latter we pay next to nothing for accommodation as my sister's friends own a cortijo in the Alpujarra. For Sicily we've used a company called Sicilian Experience (they're in London at Palace Street, SW1) and they are a very small, friendly setup (Suzanne and Fabricio) who know all the properties they recommend. They tailor your holiday for you, flights, airports, transfers, the lot, they bend over backwards to give you exactly what you want and you won't beat them on price by doing it yourself. We've stayed in Taormina, Siracusa (Ortigia) and the Aeolian Islands (think Il Postino and Stromboli) with them and had three fabulous hols that didn't break the bank. This year we're finding that fixing everything up for yourself for trips to mainland Italy is cheaper than booking through a company and it's not too difficult. Most of the joys of Florence are indoors. Our B&B lady told us that November and December are good times to go as it's incredibly crowded in spring and summer. And it's bloody expensive. Even the churches charge a fortune to get in and the only way to beat the crowds and avoid queuing at the main galleries and the Duomo for hours is to pay extra and book in advance. Florence exists in order to empty your bank account.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 10 May 17 - 06:53 AM

Joe Offer: I think that's a rather shallow view of God, and I do not subscribe to it. But it's that shallow view that Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins and so many others subscribe to. Very few believers hold that view of God. But many of the unbelievers do - and then they attack the absurd god that is their own creation.

But it's the shallow view of God that fundamentalists, creationists etc push forward when trying to promulgate their ideology into education, particularly in the USA but also through things like "ACE" schools in the UK.

I may see no evidence of or "need" for the universe to have an intelligent creator, but can accept and respect the idea of a non-anthropocentric "force" in the universe, or a concept of God that is close to Spinoza's. What I can't accept or respect are the views of Biblical literalists and creationists who try to shoe-horn observed and measured reality into an absurd view of God with deliberate misunderstandings, lies and refusal to even try and understand the weight of evidence for an old universe.

What kind of compassionate, omnipresent, omniscient God needs Jews to paint their door lintels with lambs' blood so that he can identify which children he shouldn't kill? When he himself has hardened Pharoah's heart against freeing Jewish slaves?

Aside from the fact that there is no evidence at all that Exodus ever took place, this kind of Biblical literalism and shallow view of a deity is the one that Dawkins et al rail against *precisely* because that's the kind of thing the fundies are constantly trying to insinuate into the education system.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 10 May 17 - 09:01 AM

Thanks for the info Steve, much appreciated.

I have to say, this is a fascinating discussion. Never come across Spinoza, interesting stuff.


"...or a concept of God that is close to Spinoza's"

Spinoza's god isn't the god of the Abrahamic religions though is it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 10 May 17 - 09:25 AM

"Does it matter to you if some otherwise nice, inoffensive person believes something that you consider ridiculous?
What do you gain by ridiculing them?
"

Keith - well... on that level.. my brother in law seems to me to be a very intelligent, decent, witty bloke..

It just so happens he is a Welsh chapel minister, with his own 'church' & congregation, and some fairly fundamentalist views on humanity and our relationships and behaviour...

On the social occasions we meet, religion is not discussed for obvious reasons of family harmony...
- some kind of tacit understanding..

At a family wedding, another minister in his faith [ who preached fervently at great length ]
showed himself up to be one of the most loathsome men I have ever encountered..
again I remained tactfully & respectfully silent...

On forums like this however, I will not be so tolerant of his kind of vile smug misogynistic religious hate mongers...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 09:37 AM

It's Fabrizio, not "Fabricio!"

I know you're more paleontologically-inclined, Stu, but the Aeolian islands are geologically brilliant. They're all volcanos and all very young, with Stromboli (say it like a native: STROMboli) permanently active and Vulcano quite edgy with its Plinian tendencies. We stayed at the humble but very nice Rocce Azzure hotel on Lipari, a good hub for visiting the other islands. Lipari town is probably the best centre, lively but very charming. A night-time boat trip around Stromboli is a must, and if you're up for it a short boat ride to Vulcano will enable you to walk up to the crater rim (1500 feet, an hour through the cinders and lava deposits) where you get fumaroles, scary smells, a perfectly-formed crater and the best view on planet Earth. There's a sinister bubbling mud pool that's a popular place to go for a dip and smell all sulphureous for a few days. If you have money left over you can waste it on little souvenirs made out of pumice and obsidian to give to your friends. Some of Il Postino was filmed on the peaceful green island of Salina. We didn't get there, but there's always next time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 09:48 AM

Accusing people who think that there's almost certainly no God of taking a shallow view of him is absurd. I won't fight that battle on your territory if you don't mind. All I can do is to try to elicit from believers what their view of God is, if they're inclined to give it, preferably delivered without waffling sanctity. That's quite interesting, but what isn't interesting is the thought that I should somehow develop my own, non-shallow, view of him. Why would that game be worth the candle? All I want is your evidence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 10 May 17 - 10:01 AM

unbelievers .... attack the absurd god that is their own creation.

As opposed to believers who worship the absurd god that is their own creation, I suppose, Joe?.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 10 May 17 - 10:24 AM

btw..

as this thread is about Irish attitudes to religion..

There's a really good movie - a bleak tragicomedy about a genuinely 'good' Irish priest.

I watched it twice in two days.. so obviously i recommend it !!!

Calvary


It's still on BBC iplayer

"Drama. An Irish priest who is threatened during a confession finds himself in a race against time to discover the identity of his potential killer.

Release date: 2014
19 days left to watch
1 hour, 35 minutes
"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 10 May 17 - 10:35 AM

The geology would be one of the reasons for visiting. I've never visited an active volcano (unless you count Yellowstone) and the Italian volcanos have played such a major part in shaping european culture I'd love to visit one. I thought Etna as it is active, but will look up the others.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 10 May 17 - 11:07 AM

Pfr.
On forums like this however, I will not be so tolerant of his kind of vile smug misogynistic religious hate mongers...

I would not expect you to be, and I would join you.
I have not come across any member like that though.
Have you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 10 May 17 - 11:25 AM

Keith - well.. thinking quickly whilst on hold with BT customer services...

so far, maybe no one quite as outrageously vile as that particular minister...
he certainly made clear his views on how god decrees feminists to be abominations...

[I wish I'd somehow surreptitiously recorded his sermon at that wedding]

I'm sure I could even see young women in the congregation cringing uneasily...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 11:44 AM

We went up Etna in 2015. It was pretty quiet at the time. You can go up to 10000 feet via bus, then cable car, then by massive 4x4 special vehicles. There's a touristy bit at about 5000 feet that isn't too bad. Above 10000 feet you have to hire a guide and be properly equipped. But the 10000 feet bit is good. You can stroll around the edges of craters and see the restlessness nearer the summit pretty well, though you're not actually looking at the main summit craters. It's a damn big mountain is Etna. If you go before June the top is pretty snowy.

Vesuvius is worth climbing, though it's a big tourist trap, and, to be honest, there's very little going on up top at the moment. The top few hundred feet is on foot and it's a slog through loose cinders. A really good place to go near there is the Solfatara crater at Pozzuoli (in the Phlegrean Fields, Campi Flegrei, a supervolcano that's left a huge caldera, mostly under the sea now, allegedly still an extreme danger. It was at the centre of the Campanian Ignimbrite super-eruption that may have seen off the Neanderthals once and for all). You may already know about Pozzuoli and it's bradyseism. It's a workaday sort of town but it's been the scene of some dramatic earth movements in the recent past. Take the Metropolitana railway from Naples to Pozzuoli and walk up the hill to the crater. There's no hill to climb to get into it. Boiling mud and very scary fumaroles, and the scene of a violent phreatic eruption in the 11th century. And it's where St Gennaro was martyred. I've seen his bones in a large urn in the Duomo crypt in Naples. Bloody Catholics have such good taste! There seem to be piles of saints' bones in many an Italian church!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 11:47 AM

The apostrophe goblin's been at it again, I see.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 10 May 17 - 12:14 PM

"Live and let live as harmoniously as possible I say."
Unless you are an "implanted" Muslim, or a "slave-owning Traveller", or an "brainwashed Irish child" of course of course!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 10 May 17 - 01:25 PM

Rob Naylor says: But it's the shallow view of God that fundamentalists, creationists etc push forward when trying to promulgate their ideology into education, particularly in the USA but also through things like "ACE" schools in the UK.

And I would whole-heartedly join with opposition to any attempts to impose fundamentalism, creationism, and such on the rest of us. But Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins and many Mudcat atheists paint their positions with a wide brush, and insult all who have religious inclinations.

Most religious people are just as reasonable and civil and capable, as are most atheists. When any group paints another with a broad brush, the result is alienation. I don't think that's healthy. I feel insulted by the likes of Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins, and rightly so. If their true object of ridicule is fundamentalism and its effects on society, that's another matter.

I've taken the time to watch videos from Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins, and I find them to be uniformly insulting.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 10 May 17 - 02:30 PM

Jim,
"Live and let live as harmoniously as possible I say."
Unless you are....


Wrong again Jim.
I make no such exceptions, and certainly not Muslims, Travellers and Irish none of whom I have ever had any issue with.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 10 May 17 - 02:44 PM

Broad brushes indeed. Dawkins is a fundamentalist and not liked by lots of scientists, regardless of whether they have a faith or not as his combative and confrontational manner does more harm than good. Hitchens was more complex character and his atheism was less crusading and more personal in nature; Hitchens was't trying to convert people as he didn't care what people thought, he was just being himself.

As for Fry... well, I'm less of a fan than I was. I have no issue at all with his questioning of why god lets innocents suffer (an issue totally avoided by those on this forum who might be able to answer the question), but I'm tired of him as a personality and I wonder if we've overestimated his talents. He's a witty and amusing writer, but is there any more? Not sure.


"Mudcat atheists paint their positions with a wide brush, and insult all who have religious inclinations."

Well, I don't think they* all do and sometimes you need a wide brush to cover a large area. Let's talk specifics!

*I don't count myself as an atheist because I have my own ideas on all this, all though to all the major religions in the world folk like myself are probably indistinguishable from atheists, so feel free to include me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 10 May 17 - 03:24 PM

Stu, note that I said many Mudcat atheists paint with a wide brush. Perhaps I should have said many of the most vocal Mudcat atheists paint thusly.

There are many Mudcat atheists who can carry on a peaceful and respectful and constructive discussion, and I find them delightful. It's the ones who are constantly on the attack, who make me feel uneasy and unwelcome. And Fry and Hitchens and Dawkins are always on attack mode.

I really don't like being pushed into a defensive posture. I much prefer open discussions where all positions are welcome and respected.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 03:26 PM

Well I'm a Mudcat atheist and I don't go around insulting people here because they have a faith to follow. It's what you do with what you've got that's paramount. My strong view is that no-one can claim the slightest justification for trying to spread their personal faith to other people, be they your children or your students or whoever they are. Just remember that faith is belief without evidence. The whole basis of education is to enthuse people about looking for evidence. There is no such thing as a Catholic child or a Muslim child. If you send your child to a school, or a Sunday school, or take them to a service where they will be told that untrue stories are true, you are a hundred times worse than the most insulting atheist you can think of. At least he isn't trying to force young people to accept myth as truth. Yes you can get points across by fables. But your starting point is to say that what I'm about to tell you is a fable, not a true story, though there will be a lesson to learn from it. When Jesus, if he existed, told people parables, the recipients knew they were hearing parables. We live in a world in which hundreds of millions of people think that Jesus walked on water, turned water into wine and raised the dead, finally coming back from the dead himself. That's what the Church wants you to think because that's the way the Church exerts control over you. If you are not telling your vulnerable audience that these are stories, not the truth, you are wicked. You are not trying to propagate deeper truths at all. You are trying to catch people while they are young. I don't care what irrational beliefs people cling to. I'm a football fanatic and I perfectly understand why people need to be allowed to have their own little irrational corner. But I'll never do anyone any harm by supporting Liverpool (doesn't always do my own nerves much good, mind). Persuading people to believe in God by dealing in dishonesty is the very opposite. That's not meant to be an insult. That's meant to be a challenge.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 10 May 17 - 05:19 PM

Thing is


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 05:25 PM

What do


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 10 May 17 - 05:41 PM

Dunno what happened there .........it's getting a bit tiresome the more vocal atheists disclaiming certainty but being certain the bible is just make believe ! And reassuring it's ok for us to have our faith but not to talk about it , as if we served a saviour who told us not to take the gospel into the whole world !    And these more vocal atheists seem to make it their life's mission to attack believers faith, even when their not believing the biblical narrative always as per joe . But the Christian had only to disagree with the atheist esp on evolutionism and all of a sudden we are disrespecting them ....


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 May 17 - 06:05 PM

I have no interest whatsoever in attacking your faith. I have no certainties. And please talk about your faith all you like. Just talk about it, don't try to foist it. If you don't talk about it there's no way we can know how your mind works. Jesus never told you to lie to people in order to get them to follow him. He said let your speech be yea yea, nay nay. Once he was dead he no longer had control over what was written about him, generally many decades later by four men who had never known him. And many other accounts have been suppressed, lest we forget. Turn your back on the truth of evolution and you deserve all the ridicule available. Instead, try to turn your critical faculties back on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 10 May 17 - 07:35 PM

Because, Keith, of the terrible harm that ridiculous beliefs cause when reasonable people respect them (the ridiculous beliefs). Mind you not all beliefs are so.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 10 May 17 - 08:21 PM

But the Christian had only to disagree with the atheist esp on evolutionism and all of a sudden we are disrespecting them ....

No, Pete, you're disrespecting reality and intelligence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 03:24 AM

The point is being missed here
The problem with religion doesn't lie in people's beliefs, but in the fact that it has been forced down the throats of people for many centuries, right uo to the present day - the church Ireland is still fighting to hold a grip of children's minds though its ownership of schools
Fortunately that is a losing battle
If you want exaples of the effects of that grip, go look at the Magdelene Laundries - slave-run industries to punish young women for "sinning", or the industrial shools where children had a twisted form of education physically beaten into them
It is a bit rich that the Christians (genuine or hypocritical) should complain about being got at.
Step aside you people - your day is done - nobody is preventing you from believing what you wish - but stop forcing it on others.
Is that really unreasonable.
"none of whom I have ever had any issue with."
Then I imagined the "implant theory" or the "brainwashed Irish schoolchildren" or the "over-representation of slave-owners in the Travelling community"
Want me to put them all up again ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 03:25 AM

MODERN CHRISTIANITY in ACTION
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 11 May 17 - 03:59 AM

, go look at the Magdelene Laundries - slave-run industries to punish young women for "sinning", or the industrial shools where children had a twisted form of education physically beaten into them

Such abominations occur everywhere including secular and atheist states.

Then I imagined the "implant theory"

You imagined that it came from me.

or the "brainwashed Irish schoolchildren"


Again, that was the finding of historians I quoted, not me.

or the "over-representation of slave-owners in the Travelling community"


It is a fact that Travellers are over-represented in recent (since 2011) cases of slavery.

None of that is relevant to this thread. You are just pursuing your ridiculous vendetta.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 11 May 17 - 04:18 AM

i suppose every society socialises its citizens in its own specific way.

if there were a perfect way, you'd be able to point to a perfect society somewhere on earth, and as far as I'm aware - you can't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 11 May 17 - 04:41 AM

The "liberal" attack on conservative social values continues.
Nothing to do with blasphemy, just bitter Fascist ideology.

If the Church was to condone homosexual "marriage" and ditch its sensible social values, these people would be over it like a rash.....they secretly like religions.......after all they practice one themselves......"liberal" fundamentalism!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 04:55 AM

"Nothing to do with blasphemy, just bitter Fascist ideology."
Utter nonsense
You choose to ignore the continuing behaviour of the church and advocate that it be allowed to continue
That is fascism
The people have now voted to accept homosexuality as natural - you continue to pwersecute and insult them
That is fascism
"Such abominations occur everywhere including secular and atheist states.|"
So what - that is no excuse fotr it being allowed to continue here
Your excuses for your extremism are immaterial - you are an extremist, one of the worst on this forum
Your continuing defence of those horrendous claims are an indication that you still hold those views - you have stated they are yours so take responsibility for believing such shit and stop rerescuting those you don't like or approve of
That is sick
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:27 AM

Why put marriage into inverted commas when referring to gay couples?
They have every right to enjoy the benefits and joys of marriage the same as anyone else. I've always felt the Christian Church is unkind and nasty towards gay people. It's one of their tenets I just can't accept.

Islam is even worse. It's absolutely forbidden even to admit to being gay. One would be stoned or worse.

These attitudes are one of the reasons I struggle with my faith.
It sometimes completely lacks understanding, kindness or benevolence, three things I hold very dear.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:28 AM

So Jim do you think morality is merely what "people" accept . Do you have some other measure of what is moral that is less subjective?   And mostly what you call abuse by clergy the Christians here would agree with , and say that they were acting against the teaching of Jesus. Of course if it were atheists doing the sane things , what ultimate authority is there to say they done wrong . And if the majority of people think it is not wrong , would that make it right ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:37 AM

Senoufou , the reason some of us put commas round the word is we believe the definition of marriage is one man to one woman . That does not make us homophobic
Except in the minds of those who say they promote free speech - as long as it in agreement with their own views


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:39 AM

"....turn your back on the truth of evolution ..." Say Steve .    Begging the question!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:47 AM

"I really don't like being pushed into a defensive posture. I much prefer open discussions where all positions are welcome and respected."

I guess we all feel a bit like that in these discussions, and I've been a bit ranty in the past when I've had to deflect some rather supercilious invective. I'm trying hard NOT to react like that anymore.

Meanwhile, this thread has been instructive and I've been reading up on Spinoza since he was mentioned in this thread yesterday, and I'm intrigued. Damn, I'd wish I'd had a half-decent education. We should be teaching philosophy in our schools from primary level onwards.



"If the Church was to condone homosexual "marriage"

Aaaaaaaannnnnnddd out of nowhere, he mentions it again. Really Ake, we understand exactly where you're coming from. Let's park this one mate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 11 May 17 - 08:03 AM

"We should be teaching philosophy in our schools from primaey level onwards."



I agree - it is a vastly underrated subject. But I am sure there would be a lot of backlash (What's the evidence for this? What is its value on terms of getting a job? And so on)

My only experience of schools actually teaching Philosophy was at A level where, as with so many subjects they had filletted it down to the point that all they were interested in was parrotting what various philosphers had said over the ages. Wave goodbye to a pass grade if you attempted to answer by saying what you thought


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 08:08 AM

"and say that they were acting against the teaching of Jesus."
They were acting under the power that their relgion gave them and the church colluded in their crimes and even allowed them to continue - first in other parishes, and eventually in third world countries.
It's immaterial to compare this with the actions of atheists
Paedophelia is wrong, whoever does it.
It is pure evil when people used the position their religion gives them to carry out their crimes.
It is grimly ludicrous that a church that can condemn a young woman who has "sinned" to a life of brutality and slavery while at the same time condoning and hiding the ruining of young peoples lives by the thousands.
It is significant that the Clerical abuses scandal has brought into question every single aspect of the relationship between the state and the church - a question that is long overdue being addressed.
Morality, as far as I am concerned, needs to be based our relationship with our fellow human beings - not on any belief or superstition, just how we treat each other
The Church's long term attitude to morality has been hypocritical in the extreme
I get tired of saying this - peoples' beliefs should be their own consciously arrived at decision - not imposed by a body that has greater power than any other in our society - the power over our minds, virtually from the time we become conscious.
I don't choose to target Keith and his ilk randomly.
He flaunts his 'Christianity' like an expensive Burberry jacket while at the same time targetting some of the poorest and most vulnerable members of our society with his hatred and bigotry (he will low ask for examples - he has been given enough of them to choke a donkey)   
If I though for one minute that his behaviour is representative of Christianity as a whole, I would campaign to my last breath to have such a philosophy banned from the face of the planet.
He is typical of the worst aspects of mealy-mouthed Christian hypocrisy
Ake is similar with his support of the institution of the church and his archaic hatred for large sections of his fellow man.
They are both extremely useful and conveniently available examples of what is wrong with many religions nowadays   
It's not religion that I disapprove of - but some of the believers really do get up my nose
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 11 May 17 - 08:18 AM

You are quite correct Pete, I am an "athenostic", veering to the atheist side but I do not recognise homosexual "marriage" in fact it is not legally recognised in one part of the UK and many parts of the US. Worldwide it is barely recognised at all


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 May 17 - 09:22 AM

"...the reason some of us put commas round the word is we believe the definition of marriage is one man to one woman . That does not make us homophobic"

Yes it does. Absolutely it does. As in "I'm not a racist, but..." By declaring yourself against gay marriage you are advocating denying human rights that you yourself enjoy to gay people. Gay marriage does you personally absolutely no harm. It doesn't impinge on you at all. It's got nothing to do with you or me. Your objection to it is predicated on your anti-gay prejudice, which you appear unable to own up to, and trying to hide behind a cloak of respectability that you think is provided by religions declaring that "marriage is between one man and one woman" (perhaps you'd care to tell us where that edict comes from, by the way) marks you out as hypocritical and bigoted.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 11 May 17 - 09:38 AM

.. and on the subject of christians [catholics] and gay marriage....

Anti-Gay Bigots Play The Victim


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:04 AM

Jim,
Your nasty, personal vendetta against me is reaching new heights.
Why will you never just discuss the issues instead of smearing and attacking other contributors?

He flaunts his 'Christianity' like an expensive Burberry jacket while at the same time targetting some of the poorest and most vulnerable members of our society with his hatred and bigotry (he will low ask for examples - he has been given enough of them to choke a donkey)  

I do not believe I have ever "flaunted" my faith.
Please provide an example, and please stop making personal accusations without supporting them with anything.
You claim to have given examples, but you have not.

I do not believe I have ever "targeted" an members of our society.
Again, please quote me doing that. An actual quote please and not just your interpretation of what I said.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:05 AM

Banning gay people from marrying in Church (or mosque etc) is no different in my view to the dreadful treatment of black people during apartheid and segregation. "We whites can use these toilets, these buses and these schools, but you blacks cannot."
Any discrimination is 'phobic'.

As Steve so rightly says, gay marriages have no effect on other folk at all. It's none of anyone's business if two people of the same sex want to commit themselves in marriage to each other, in a religious setting or otherwise. In fact, any public statement of commitment and permanence of a relationship will stabilise society in general.

It must be so hurtful and provoke feelings of bitterness and rejection to be refused the privileges of a religious marriage on the basis of one's sexuality. And to be refused by the very people who claim to promote love and goodwill is doubly disgraceful. It smacks of hypocrisy... No, that's wrong. It IS hypocrisy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:25 AM

We believe the definition of marriage is one white man to one white woman. That does not make us homophobic racist.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:41 AM

Sorry Sen, but you are simply wrong.
Civil rights for Afro Americans was about discrimination on grounds of skin colour, clearly wrong.

Homosexual "marriage" involves completely redefinition of a social institution to accommodate a sexual minority. It encompasses the redefinition of marriage in many ways ...the new monogamy, open marriages etc....which are common within the active male homosexual community.

It should also be taken into account that male homosexual behaviour results in extremely bad sexual health figures. It is not a positive lifestyle.....Steve as usual is talking bullshit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:45 AM

Here we go again with Mudcat's own number one homophobic bigot spewing the same old vomit.

Give over, Ake, eh? We all know your hideous opinions on this matter all too well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 11:46 AM

"Why will you never just discuss the issues"
The issue here is Christianity and I have just used you as an example of one.
The issue of your bigotry and racism cmes up whenever it is relevant
"I do not believe I have ever "flaunted" my faith."
You have here and you have elsewhere.
In one of our arguments you actually said you'd pray for me.
You targetted Muslims in a way nobody else has ever done in my experience - to describe the entire masculine population of a community in Britain as meing "culturally implanted" with a tendency to have underage sex is, in my experience unprecedented
You claim you did so because others said the same yet you have never produced anybody saying suh a thing - never.
Had any public figure ever made such a statement publicly they would heve been pilloried and possibly prosecuted - yet you persist in claiming they did and still refuse to produce such a quote.
Pat and I worked with Travellers for three decades and we saw the effects that prejudice and hatred had on their lives
You take the actions of five criminals from a single family and smear the entire Travelling Community by suggesting that their criminal actions were a massive over-representation of slave-owning in the Travelling community
How is that not persecuting an impoverished section of society?
You claim that "generations of Irish schoolchildren were brainwashed to hate Britain"
Members of my family were brought up under the Irish educational system - I now live in Ireland and am in daily contact with people brought up under that system
When you claimed an Irish historian inspired you to make such a claim I went and got her book from the Library and I explained exactly what she said
You have ignored every single thing I have said based on what I have read and what I am personally experiencing
You have never at any time produced a single example of how that "education to hate" manifests itself.
You still claim that generations of Irish schoolchildren were brainwashed into hating Britain.
I can think of no other term to describe you behaviour to all of these people other than totally irrational blind hatred.
The fact that I have had experience of all of these people, Muslims, Travellers and the Irish, makes me personally angry.
The fact that I was brought up to respect all people and all cultures makes your behaviour outrageous to my personal outlook on life.
The fact that you claim to be a Christian makes me angry on behalf of my family, friends and acquaintances, living and dead, who are or were Christians.
You insult them all.
Your bigotry and hatred runs though everything you post on these subjects.
You have an explanation of my reaction to your intolerance - there's an end to it.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 11 May 17 - 12:18 PM

Any sexual activity involving the anus and lower bowel ought be treated carefully as a health and safety hygiene risk.
Best safe practise should be prioritised and followed at all times...

Personally, it's not my cup of tea, but I'm well aware the extent to which American male heterosexuals
are obsessed with it.
Seemingly prizing it over vaginal sex...

Porn must obviously have played a part in normalizing this,
but I wonder to what extent the Catholic Church's age old ruling banning contraception
has played it's part over countless generations...???

It's a bit rich all these straight & christian men bumming their women,
then complaining how ungodly it is for gays to be doing exactly the same with each other... 🙄


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 May 17 - 01:09 PM

Homosexual "marriage" involves completely redefinition of a social institution to accommodate a sexual minority. It encompasses the redefinition of marriage in many ways ...the new monogamy, open marriages etc....which are common within the active male homosexual community.

If you're telling me that we are redefining marriage, then it's incumbent on you to tell us where the original definition came from, if it came from anywhere at all. So tell us: who first pontificated that marriage had to be between a man and a woman, and on what authority was he speaking?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 11 May 17 - 02:32 PM

Jim,
The issue of your bigotry and racism cmes up whenever it is relevant

If you are not lying about me, QUOTE ME!

I do not mean a lying misrepresentation of what I said, but an actual quote of me saying something bigoted or racist, liar.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 11 May 17 - 02:39 PM

You've had the "implant" quote a dozen or more times; you've had the "brainwashing" accusation, and you don't have to go far to find the "over-representation of slavery" stupidity
Which of these are you actually claiming you didn't say?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 May 17 - 04:07 PM

Darn. And all this time, I thought everybody had an implant to cause underage sex. It's called puberty, right?
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 May 17 - 05:39 PM

Whaddya mean, "cause," Joe?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 11 May 17 - 07:10 PM

I don't ridicule religion, it ridicules itself.

-Bill Maher


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 02:52 AM

"It's called puberty, right?"
Maybe Joe - can't remember that far back!
Nothing to do with culture and certainly not confined to any particular group.
"Bill Maher"
I prefer
"if God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him"
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 03:24 AM

Jim,
The implant quote is the only one you have given.
In it I refer to the people who ascribed the offending to culture, which I admitted knowing nothing about.
I say I only believe them because of their credibility and in the absence of any other theory.
I say that only a tiny minority are involved.

There is no racism or bigotry in that quote, and it is over six years old.
You have no case against me. It is just a vendetta.
You try to make this another thread about me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 12 May 17 - 03:45 AM

If what you say about Keith is true Jim, and I have no reason to doubt it, he sounds like a cocktail composed of UKIP, the Daily Mail and the KuKluxKlan.

It's simplistic and wrong to draw ridiculous conclusions from the behaviour of a tiny minority of a sector of a population. All Muslim men certainly aren't paedophiles. All travellers aren't slave-owners.
All gay men aren't infected with nasty diseases. All religious people aren't brainwashed or bigoted. But what one CAN say is that everyone is a human being. Not an alien. And it's better to seek the similarities rather than the differences.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 04:17 AM

"I say that only a tiny minority are involved."
You said that the rest of them had to suppress their cultural urges - which is worse
You can spot pedophiles and deal with them
Your suggestion goes further to suggest every single Muslim is a timebomb waiting to go off
You base this, as you did with the Travellers, on the criminal actions of a few young men - you smeared an entire culture.
No other explanation?
That compounds your single handed efforts
As one of your so-called witnesses, Jack Straw said, "testosterone fizzing young men acting as any others acted at their age.
No racism in suggesting that an entire race/religion is tended towards underage sex because of their culture.
It's the oldest racial smear in the book - "Black men with large penises after our women" - no difference.
"over six years old."
And you still defend it - my point exactly.
It is no vendetta Keith - your bigotry and intolerance runs right though your attitude to other cultures, including refugees and immigrants who are 'a security risk' - the enemy within
I don't try to make it about you - I raise it here as an example of the bigoted behaviour of a declared Christian.
You offend all Christians when you describe yourself as one.
As much as I refuse to believe the myths, that is not the Christianity I have become accustomed to from real Christians
Where is your love of humanity, your Christian charity?
Have you any idea of the danger attitudes like yours open up for Traveller families
You need a lesson in helping clean up a caravan after a fire-bomb attack, or seeing a family driven out from their home in mid-winter.
Last year, a caravan fire killed ten members of one family
The good Christian townspeople refused to allow the survivors to be temporarily settled on a vacant field - they have since been camped on an industrial car-park with no sanitation, running water or electricity.
Gives a whole new meaning to "Suffer the children".
Christian - I don't think so !
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 04:47 AM

Jim,
You said that the rest of them had to suppress their cultural urges - which is worse

If I said that, QUOTE ME liar.

Your suggestion goes further to suggest every single Muslim is a timebomb waiting to go off

If I have ever suggested that, QOUTE ME liar.

I said repeatedly that religion was not involved, liar.

You base this, as you did with the Travellers, on the criminal actions of a few young men - you smeared an entire culture.

I did no such thing.
I just referred to the fact of an over-representation, because it was relevant to the discussion.

Senoufou, has Jim given you any reason to believe what he says about me?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:00 AM

Three Girls is on BBC One at 9pm on May 16, May 17 and May 18.
It about the Rochdale abuse scandal.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:18 AM

Er, you did base your rather persistent attack on travellers on a very small number of convictions, Keith. As a man who purports to come from a scientific background you should realise that using a tiny handful of cases to depict an "over-representation" is statistically extremely unsafe. In fact, you'd have been laughed out of the lab for doing that at my university. You and bobad did the same thing with regard to the numbers of alleged antisemitic hate attacks on Jewish people in the UK, relatively tiny set alongside the overall numbers of Jews and the population of the country as a whole. That isn't to say that the crimes aren't despicable, but you misused the figures in order to get us to think that there's a terrible crisis around antisemitic hate crime, which there isn't. Well you're not the only one around here from a scientific background. You may think you can fool some of the people some of the time...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:54 AM

"If I said that, QUOTE ME liar."
This is your response to Lox's challenge on your implant claim
Subject: RE: BS: Muslim prejudice
From: Keith A of Hertford - PM
Date: 25 Feb 11 - 10:28 AM
"Your position that British Pakistanis struggle daily to suppress a desire that they, and no other people have,"
I am sure other people do have it, especially if living a sexually repressed lifestyle."
Not only does it attack Pakistanis, it implicates other racial groups - like Rumanians
Don't call me a liar Keith and stop humiliating yourself - it's embarrassing
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 12 May 17 - 06:36 AM

Bloody hell. This discussion was getting interesting back there. Can we just let the usual old crap flow and get back to the subject?

You're not going to change the views of those involved, so let's move on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 06:52 AM

Agreed
Let's move on
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 07:51 AM

Steve,
Er, you did base your rather persistent attack on travellers on a very small number of convictions, Keith.

It was not persistent nor an attack.
It was based on all the convictions any of us could find since the new laws came in in 2011.

Jim, you do tell lies about me and the quote neither attacks nor implicates anyone.

Move on?
Stop making false accusations and I won't need to refute them.
I keep asking you to stick to the subject and drop the personal attacks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:00 AM

Obsessives are unable to control themselves - it's a mental illness.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:13 AM

That's two more content-free snipes on two threads this morning, bobad. You're stalking.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:38 AM

And there's another one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:50 AM

You'll notice that Shaw the hypocrite makes no comment about his pal Carroll's obsessive stalking of Keith.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 09:12 AM

"Obsessives are unable to control themselves - it's a mental illness."

Bob - errrmmm... kettle... black..?????

hah.. the absurdity.. the irony... 🤡


Right then.. now can we please have our thread back before it get's hijacked even further...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 12 May 17 - 09:26 AM

Someone said the point was being missed - if the point was about how awful religious ideas are, I think it's being made. My point about "harm" is being illustrated beautifully.

If the point was that the blasphemy charge failed for lack of outrage, that is pretty funny too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 11:36 AM

if the point was about how awful religious ideas are, I think it's being made.

Ideas like love your neighbour and even your enemy?
Identify some awful religious ideas please.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 11:44 AM

oh come on Keith..

you know fully well.. you can easily identify a list for us...


Christians and Humanists could find plenty to agree on
that requires no kind of god as a basis for good respectful mutually beneficial social conduct..


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 11:57 AM

So they are not all awful.
What ideas would a humanist and a Christian disagree on?

Life after death for one, but is that an awful idea?
Many find it comforting and where is the harm?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 12:14 PM

Awful religious ideas? How about centuries of antisemitism by the Catholic Church, the collusion of the pre-war Pope with fascists, death for apostasy in Islam, ritual genital mutilation of boys and girls, the Spanish Inquisition, institutional cover-ups of sexual abuse, the denial of contraception and family planning advice to poverty-stricken women in the third world, Limbo, original sin, telling people that mythology is the truth, telling us all that we are sinful wretches who need to be "saved," institutional homophobia, the institutional denial of equality for women, sainting wicked people such as Mother Teresa...stop me somebody... 😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 May 17 - 12:22 PM

In the past, very bad things were done by and to everyone.
If religion had not been invented, they still would.
None of those are regarded as "religious ideas."


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 12:35 PM

The notion of life after death does a huge amount of harm, actually. First, it's a lie. Second, religions use it as a blunt instrument of control over their flocks, imposing conditionality on it by inventing heaven and hell, reward or punishment contingent on the right kind of behaviour here on earth - behaviour as defined by the religion. It wouldn't be so bad if that "right kind of behaviour" was always part of some agreed universal moral code, but it isn't. You won't be getting to heaven anytime soon if you make so bold as to practise your homosexuality, for example. Finally, it's a massive conceit. You're already a winner by virtue of having made it on to planet Earth in the first place. The chance of you being you, what with the lottery of trillions of possible permutations of eggs and sperms, was vanishingly small, yet here you are. But that isn't good enough for you. You want exquisite eternal life on top! Well bugger off. You're having your go right now, right here. Give it your best shot, be nice to others and be satisfied with it. And enjoy life sans sword of Damocles!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 12:41 PM

If they are ideas that emanate from religious custom and practice, now or in the past, they are religious ideas. You don't get to cherrypick the unpleasant ones away. And many of the items in my list are current, not just in the past.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 01:51 PM

It is not about "Bad Things" per se being talked about here Keith
It is the uses of religion to carry out "bad things" that is under discussion.
Religion, through its misuse by the church, is historically the main cause of mass bloodshed and terror recorded and that is an ongoing fact
The inquisitions started in the 12th century; the last execution was carried out in Spain in 1826
Some rack record of bloodshed and terror
It is the misuses of religion that is under discussion, not general "bad things"
No other organisation was in a position to create terror under the threat of "eternal damnation"
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 12 May 17 - 03:18 PM

Of course, it's worth mentioning that there is a "massive over-representation" of Christian clergymen who have been found to have been raping and sexually and physically assaulting children in their care and using the status that their position in the church to allow them to do so.
This goes back many decades - probably centuries
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 12 May 17 - 04:17 PM

Steve calls Christian beliefs a lie , which us begging the question. But he wants us to believe he is tolerant of what Christians believe . Then of course we have the usual dredging up of clergy abuse , as though we condone them ! . And from this they equate biblical ( and otherwise traditional ) beliefs about morality as though we were actively and vindictively persecuting others for their lifestyles.. ....                                     Btw I may not be active here over the next week as we are away in Scotland and don't know about wi fi availability


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 04:44 PM

Beliefs are not lies. Assertions CAN be lies. Please don't misrepresent me. Just read whst I type.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 04:55 PM

Just read WHAT I type, even!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:12 PM

Read the thread, Keith!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:18 PM

Steve calls Christian beliefs a lie , which us begging the question.

Well, pete, young earth creationism is certainly a lie.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 May 17 - 05:55 PM

"Begging the question" either means employing a circular argument (the meaning I prefer) or "raising the question" (a disappointing degradation of the meaning of the term that we now have to live with). Come back, MGM, all is forgiven. It does seem that Pete understands neither meaning, poor chap.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 06:55 PM

ok.. I'm prepared to accept a historic bloke called jesus may have existed..
bit of a bolshy young smartarse lefty trouble maker...
good at conjuring and magic tricks to drum up a crowd at political rallies...

..and that he'd be absolutely dismayed at all the bollocks that's been written about him..
and all the problems caused to humanity over 2000 years in his name...

But god is more of a problem.. it'd take an astounding leap of faith
to accept that he's been a more benign influence on history than his
arch enemy "The Devil"...

Some classic comic book heroes and villains are probably more believable.. and nicer blokes...

Anyway.. headphones on for vintage rock and roll and a bottle of cuban rum..
I may be some time... 🎸


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 12 May 17 - 07:22 PM

The last burning organized by the Inquisition was in 1834, when the Spanish Inquisition was officially abolished. But though Torquemada's legacy has been laid to rest, the Inquisition lives on.

Based in Vatican City, the Holy Office of the Inquisition is still one of the most powerful branches of the Church hierarchy. In 1965, the P.R.-sensitive Pope Paul VI rebranded the Inquisition as the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, but it was still basically the Inquisition.

The modern church lacked the political power to institute wide-ranging reigns of terror and torture around the world, so the Congregation has to settle for sternly admonishing its targets these days. What a comedown!

Instead of being the most feared institution in the entire civilized world, the Congregation had to settle for making obscure theological pronouncements — in Latin, no less. So just in case you actually wanted to care about what they had to say, you wouldn't be able to read it anyway. In 1966, Paul VI even revoked its ability to ban books, leaving the Inquisition toothless and largely irrelevant going into the 21st century.

Source: http://www.rotten.com/library/history/inquisition/

The new inquisition is being waged by FOX news and Pence claiming that a genocide against Christians is killing torturing raping and causing irreparable harm to Christians by ISIS and radical Islam.
What we need is a good war!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:21 PM

i was enjoying raw raucous rock n roll - devil music..
when an angry voice in my head said STOP !!!

GO UPSTAIRS AND PEE OR FACE MY WRATH !!!!!

so I took off the headphones and followed that command...

Now an angelic voice is saying settle down peacefully and listen to Sandy Denny or Lindisfarne...

phew.. what if I'd been listening to punk rock..!!!???

..yesterday's thunder and lightning storm was maybe too close for mere coincidence...

This is a multiverse full of uncanny mysteries... 😇


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:38 PM

Thne Inquisition was a church court, used mostly to determine the orthodoxy and condemn heresy. It got out of hand now and then, especially during the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella in 15th-century Spain. It did not issue punishments directly - that was done through governments.

It was renamed the "Holy Office" in 1908, and became the "Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith" (CDF) in 1965. It still functions as a church court, but its primary function is to determine the official teaching of the church. The worst punishment it can issue nowadays is to cancel a theologian's license to teach as a Catholic theologian.

Cardinal Ratzinger was the head of CDF during the reign of Pope John Paul II.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:55 PM

DISCO !!! spoketh the Lord..

what.. I thought.. I only just settled down to listen to early &0s commercial pop folk music
according to your last command..
make your mind up...

My mum is only 85 and diagnosed with dementia..

how old is god...?????

ok then lord.. oops upside your head... YMCA... 🕺


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 08:57 PM

"early 70s".. damn that devil and his cheap plastic keyboad from hell


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 10:28 PM

DISCO.. 2 CDs of 12 inch remixes..

I despair at this emptyness in my heart.. if only i had a god to fill it...

or alka seltzer and a few slices of bread, 2 pints of water, and a good nights sleep...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 12 May 17 - 10:33 PM

21st century.. there is a cure for religion...


... education...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:23 AM

"Some rack record "
My Freudian slip - must remember it for the future
Should read "back record" of course
I'm not too happy to see this turn into an attack on religion' I don't think this is of any value at the present time
Recent events and revelations have created a situation where religion is now finding its own level in the minds of the present generation
Even in 'Holy Ireland', it's former dominance in the nation's politics is being challenged and gradually removed - the last-ditch seems to be in education, where the church still clings on desperately to their ownership of schools and minds.
Eventually, some bright spark has to take the case to the International Courts and demand that Ireland produce an education system that caters equally for non believers and those of all faiths.
I've said often enough that we spent nearly half a century working with devout believers and in that time we came to respect their beliefs without sharing them
Among those was Tom Lenihan, a fine singer from a few miles from here who we first met and befriended in 1975 and continued to record up to his death in 1990.
Antother friend, the late Tom Munnelly, summed up old Tom's religion perfectly in the his book/cassette collection of Tom's songs, 'Mouunt Callan Garland".

"Tom was a deeply religious Roman Catholic who practised his faith without ostentation or cant. In all the years of working with him I never heard him say an unkind word word abot anybody. In making such a declaration I am aware that such claims can often be mere well-meaning clichés, but I wish to emphasise that I record it here as an objective statement of fact. This lack of complication of Tom's faith was not an indication of simplicity of mind. The simplicity Tom acquired over the years was that of wisdom and the ability to discard the peripheral while retaining core values. This was illustrated for me one day when I called to keep a recording appointment I had made with him the week before. In the meantime I had discovered that a pilgrimage to the Marian shrine at Knock for the over-sixties had been arranged on the same day. Knowing of Tom's devoutness, I more than half expected him to be gone when I called up to Knockbrack. Sure enough, there was nobody about the house when I arrived. I was walking back to my car when I was hailed from a nearby field. Tom was in there thinning cabbages. I said: 'I heard about the pilgrimage and I thought you'd be gone with them.'
'Why would I travel a hundred miles? If I want God, isn't He here with me in the garden?'
I couldn't argue with that."
Me neither - would that all Christians shared Tom's gentle and compassionate faith
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 13 May 17 - 03:36 AM

I'm not too happy to see this turn into an attack on religion

Nor am I. This is a bad law so the focus needs be be on getting rid of it. To succeed in that you probably need to be working on how it infringes free speech and conflicts with human rights. Basing your aehuments on how you dislike religion is pretty much guarenteed to fail and even, in some quarters, be taken as evidence why the law is needed.

Focus on getting eid of the law.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 13 May 17 - 04:36 AM

DMcG, that is the most sensible and pertinent post yet on this thread.
If I had one of those emoji or emoticon thingees (not sure what they're called) showing 'applause', I'd put a row of them here!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 04:56 AM

There is no discussion on that law.
None of us here support blasphemy laws.

I responded to
"how awful religious ideas are"   by asking for examples of awful religious ideas. I do not think any have been provided.

In earlier centuries religion was ubiquitous. That does not mean that everything bad was the fault of religion. The times were bad.
I do not think Steve made a case for the idea of afterlife being harmful or bad.

Clergy abuse is hardly a religious idea. It is not just clergy. It happens wherever adults get access to kids, religious or not.

Jim says, "It is the uses of religion to carry out "bad things" that is under discussion."

No-one denies religion can be misused. That is not an argument against it.
Education can be misused.
Medicine can be misused.
You will agree Jim that communism has always been misused but you still do not give up on it.

So, where are these "awful religious ideas?"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 13 May 17 - 04:59 AM

Thank you kindly.

In many ways I wish the case had gone ahead. It could have been similar to the Lady Chatterly case in finishing the law off. I have no doubt Steven Fry would have played the entertainment aspect for all it was worth and has enough resources (including expert witnesses) to have demolished the whole thing. Even if he lost i suspect he would think exposing the law to such ridicule was worth it.

Instead, the law sits quietly and threateningly on the books and the first person charged will be a lot less well places than Fry to defend themselves


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:18 AM

"Clergy abuse is hardly a religious idea."
It is the use of religion with the c-operation of the church
"That is not an argument against it."
Doesn't mean to say there aren't other arguments against it - its illogicality, for one.
Education and medican can be used - we are discussing its misuse by the church in the name of religion
Read what I say Keith
I do not advocate that anybody should "give up on it"
I am suggesting that it has no place in politics and it should be arrived at volutarily
You talk about "brainwashing" but seem quite happy that our children are "brainwashed" with religion from the moment they begin to think and understand
The idea that if we don't do as the chusch says we will be condemned to spend eternity in torment seems pretty awful to me - spiritual blackmail
It was current in this part of the world until the sins of the clerics caught up with them
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:26 AM

'None of us here support blasphemy laws.'

hmmmmm.........
i'm not sure i know enough about the nature of the law, or the nature of blasphemy.
'blasphemy'....it sounds like bad manners. i don't think we should encourage it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:40 AM

When education is misused, it ceases to be education. A very good example of education being misused is religious instruction in schools. A very good example of education not being misused is the objective exploration in schools of world religions, their origins, history, tenets and effects. No-one should be telling anyone else that there is a God. It's fine to tell people that you believe in a God but absolutely not fine to try to persuade or coerce anyone else to agree with you.

And Keith, you don't counter my carefully-constructed argument simply by saying that I haven't made a case and leaving it at that. Save your cyber-ink until you have something sensible to say.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:44 AM

I don't necessarily think that religions need to be treated with good manners. The privately-held beliefs of individuals are entirely another matter. All organised religions are very damaging and they deserve all the criticism they get.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 06:40 AM

"it sounds like bad manners."
No more or less"bad manners than insulting someone's politics and we'd all be up on our chairs screaming "repression" (I hope) if they were protected by law
If we can have or atheism ridiculed and castigated (the church has been one of the first in that one), then religion should expect similar treatment.
I have to say that I always found myself discussing my attitude to religion far easier to discuss with the Muslims I have met, than I have with Christians
They appear to give the subject more thought than do mat Christians I have met
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 13 May 17 - 07:01 AM

I am not in agreement with the tenets of Islam, for example. In fact, there are many things I find abhorrent. But my Muslim husband and I have most interesting discussions about our respective religions, without our becoming acrimonious or insulting.

As Jim says, (the less 'fundamentalist') Muslims are very ready to talk calmly and intelligently about their beliefs, and it's fascinating, as long as one can listen without becoming heated and condemnatory.

It's one thing to have interesting discussions, and quite another to have someone's religion shoved in one's face in an attempt to convert, or being dragged before a judge on a blasphemy charge merely for expressing an opinion!.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 07:06 AM

Awful religious ideas part 1. I was taught all these at school

1. Non Catholics cannot get to heaven
2. Unbaptised babies cannot get to heaven
3. Anyone dying in a state of mortal sin goes straight to hell
4. Mortal sins include blasphemy, adultery and 'impurity against nature' (eg homosexuality.)
5. Jews and Muslims will go to hell unless they convert

Part 2. This list is pretty comprehensive. Being brought up initially in the Russian Orthodox faith and then Roman Catholicism I spent my formative years in a state of permanent terror!

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 07:35 AM

I am suggesting that it has no place in politics and it should be arrived at voluntarily

I am sure we all agree that Jim.

The idea that if we don't do as the chusch says we will be condemned to spend eternity in torment seems pretty awful to me - spiritual blackmail

And that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 07:50 AM

Steve,
And Keith, you don't counter my carefully-constructed argument simply by saying that I haven't made a case and leaving it at that.
OK.
The notion of life after death does a huge amount of harm, actually. First, it's a lie.

That is just your assertion with no evidence in support. Hardly a "carefully-constructed argument" !

Second, religions use it as a blunt instrument of control

That is not my experience.

imposing conditionality on it by inventing heaven and hell, reward or punishment contingent on the right kind of behaviour here on earth - behaviour as defined by the religion.

OK, but "the right kind of behaviour" is just being nice. Humanists would endorse the same.

It wouldn't be so bad if that "right kind of behaviour" was always part of some agreed universal moral code, but it isn't. You won't be getting to heaven anytime soon if you make so bold as to practise your homosexuality, for example.

Bad example. Until very recently it was regarded as deviant and to be punished by everyone, religious or not. Atheist regimes like Stalin's and Hitler's were harsher than most.

Finally, it's a massive conceit.

Another assertion without evidence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 13 May 17 - 08:01 AM

What I find interesting about Dave the Gnome's post of 13 May 17 - 07:06 AM is that if someone were to post a similar list of the teachings of Islam he would be one of the first to scream "Islamophobe".


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 08:12 AM

That's complete and utter bollocks poobad. My quotes were about what I was taught and were in answer to a question about examples of awful ideas.

Can you find any examples of me screaming Islamophobe at anyone in response to any such similar list?

Thought not. Usual drivel.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 13 May 17 - 08:41 AM

Ah, your defensiveness gives you away Gnomie boy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 13 May 17 - 08:56 AM

The "awful ideas" to which I referred were the twaddle in this very thread, Keith, and you know it. Disingenuous doesn't suit you, you ain't young enough to get away with it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 09:08 AM

Does anyone have any idea what poobad is on about? Have you found any examples of me screaming Islamophobe in relation to any such list or can we safely assume that you are, as usual, making things up?

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 09:27 AM

The "right kind of behaviour," as defined by the organised religions, is intended to keep and control the flock. I had to do my Easter Duties, otherwise hellfire. I was not to masturbate, use any form of contraception or support abortion, otherwise hellfire. Homosexual? Well I'd better remain celibate, otherwise hellfire. I was not to miss Mass on Sundays or Holy Days of Obligation, otherwise hellfire. Only baptised Catholics went to heaven. Limbo was full of unbaptised innocent babies, because they were stained by "original sin." Don't have impure thoughts, always pray to Our Lady when washing one's genitals and don't even begin to contemplate sex before marriage. Hellfire awaits. The ways available to us for risking hellfire were multifarious and oft forcibly related. The threat of an eternal adverse afterlife was by far the most damaging aspect of my religious upbringing. It is patently absurd to regard belief in an afterlife, as defined by religions, as harmless. Naturally, I expect to be told that enlightenment has mitigated some of these horrors. I've got two things to say about that. First, only SOME of these horrors, and there are are still many unenlightened parts of the world. Second, they simply have to be mitigated in this global village of ours, otherwise the Church becomes a laughing stock. "Dragged kicking and screaming" sums it up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 09:28 AM

I am sure "we all agree that Jim. And that."
You asked wat was "evil" about relighios ides
"So, where are these "awful religious ideas?"
You have two of their most common misuses by the religeus
"That is just your assertion with no evidence in support. Hardly a "carefully-constructed argument" !"
No Keith - life after death it totally illogical and beyond any practical evidence
If you have an insight into it, it is your job to prove it - we have logic and personal experience on our side - yours is based on superstition and nothing more
"That is not my experience. "
Religion has been used as a blunt instrument of control for time immemorial
Ask a Cathoic who wished to use contraception or a woman who needs a pregnancy termination for health reasons, or has been a rape victim, or subjected to incestuous sex....
How can you describe any of this as anything but "control"?
And that doesn't begin to touch on the interference of the church in elections or referenda......
As the Jesiuits admitted - "Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man " - a defiant boast of what control they hold over children
"Humanists would endorse the same."
No "Humanist" is in a position to invole a supernatural being ot threaten hell fire and damnation if their wishes are not obeyed,
The worst example of "control" is in that wielded over young people in serial cases of rape and physical abuse.
"Atheist regimes like Stalin's and Hitler's were harsher than most."
Historically that is utter nonsense
Torture, persecution and mass murder lasted for centuries when wielded by the church
I can't remember reading about Stalin or Hitler torturing or burning people to death as Henry VIII did
Your God created national disasters like famines - man may have handled them badly but 'im upstairs "he who controls all" brought them about
Christians like Sir Charles Trevelyan claimed that they we divine punishment on the Irish for being - well - Irish
You don't get a larger conceit that the definitive nature of virtually all religions, particularly Christianity.
A typical example is your telling us about life after death and claiming it's our job to disprove it.
And you wonder why religion is mocked in the 21st century....
This is positively medieval
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 09:36 AM

There you go Keith - especially aimed at those of us interested in traditional music
The church at its most humble
Jim Carroll

Irish Hierarchy's Statement on Dancing (1925)

The Irish hierarchy issued the following statement in 1925 at their October meeting in St. Patrick's College, Maynooth:
We have a word of entreaty, advice and instruction, to speak to our flocks on a very grave subject. There is danger of losing the name which the chivalrous honour of Irish boys and the Christian reserve of Irish maidens had won for Ireland. If our people part with the character that gave rise to that name, we lose with it much of our national strength, and still more of the high rank we have held in the Kingdom of Christ.
Purity is strength, and purity and faith go together. Both virtues are in danger these times, but purity is more directly assailed than faith. The danger comes from pictures and papers and drink. It comes more from the keeping of improper company than from any other cause; and there is no worse fomenter of this great evil than the dancing hall.
We know too well the fruit of these halls all over the country. It is nothing new, alas, to find Irish girls now and then brought to shame, and retiring to the refuge of institutions or the dens of great cities. But dancing halls, more especially, in the general uncontrol of recent years, have deplorably aggravated the ruin of virtue due to ordinary human weakness. They have brought many a good, innocent girl into sin, shame and scandal, and set her unwary feet on the road that leads to perdition.
Given a few frivolous young people in a locality and a few careless parents, and the agents of the wicked one will come there to do the rest, once a dance is announced without proper control. They may lower or destroy the moral tone of the whole countryside.
Action has to be taken while the character of the people as a whole is still sound to stop the dangerous laxity that has been creeping into town and country.
Amusement is legitimate, though some of our people are overgiven to play. What, however, we condemn is sin and the dangerous occasions of sin. Wherever these exist, amusement is not legitimate. It does not deserve the name of amusement among Christians. It is the sport of the evil spirit for those who have no true self-respect.
The occasions of sin and sin itself are the attendants of night dances in particular. There may be and are exceptions, but they are comparatively few.
To say nothing of the special danger of drink, imported dances of an evil kind, the surroundings of the dancing hall, withdrawal from the hall for intervals, and the dark ways home have been the destruction of virtue in every part of Ireland.
The dancing of dubious dances on Sunday, more particularly by persons dazed with drink, amounts to woeful desecration of the Lord's Day wherever it takes place.
Against such abuses, duty to God and love of our people compel us to speak out. And what we have to say each for his own diocese, is that we altogether condemn the dangerous occasions, the snares, the unchristian practices to which we have referred.
Very earnestly do we trust that it may not be necessary for us to go further.
Our young people can have plenty of worthy dancing with proper supervision, and return home at a reasonable hour. Only in special circumstances under most careful control, are all-night dances permissible.
It is no small commendation of Irish dances that they cannot be danced for long hours. That, however, is not their chief merit, and while it is no part of our business to condemn any decent dance, Irish dances are not to be put out of the place, that is their due, in any educational establishment under our care. They may not be the fashion in London or Paris. They should be the fashion in Ireland. Irish dances do not make degenerates.
We well know how so many of our people have of late been awaiting such a declaration as we now issue. Until otherwise arranged it is to be read at the principal Mass on the first Sunday of each Quarter of the Ecclesiastical Year. The priests will confer with responsible parishioners as regards the means by which it will be fully carried into effect. 'And may the God of Peace Himself sanctify you in all things, that your whole spirit and soul and body may be blameless in the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.' (Thess. v. 23).
Given at Maynooth on 6th October, 1925.
Signed on behalf of the archbishops and bishops of Ireland.
Chairman —
+PATRICK O'DONNELL, Archbishop of Armagh, Primate of All Ireland. Secretaries —
+ROBERT BROWNE, Bishop of Cloyne.
+THOMAS O'DOHERTY, Bishop of Galway.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 13 May 17 - 11:10 AM

Plenty of worthy dancing... not the Bapt?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 11:50 AM

Mrrzy,
The "awful ideas" to which I referred were the twaddle in this very thread, Keith, and you know it.

Sorry but I really did not recognise any. Please just remind us of a couple.

Steve,
The "right kind of behaviour," as defined by the organised religions, is intended to keep and control the flock.

Just another assertion, but most groups have some kind of rules to preserve the continuity of the group.

It is patently absurd to regard belief in an afterlife, as defined by religions, as harmless.

just another assertion that I do not accept.

Jim,
No Keith - life after death it totally illogical and beyond any practical evidence
If you have an insight into it, it is your job to prove it


Why does only one side need proof?
There is no proof, but quite a lot of evidence, e.g. ghost sightings, spirit messages, out of body experiences, near death experiences, etc.

Not proof. Not even very convincing, but still evidence.

Religion has been used as a blunt instrument of control for time immemorial

So has every religion, but back then religion was ubiquitous. That does not mean that everything bad was the fault of religion. The sword was a sharp "instrument of control," and very effective too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 12:01 PM

"Why does only one side need proof?"
Because there if not a shred of dependable expendable evidence other than unprovable stories
Don't be silly
Go make your fame and fortune by providing soem
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 01:06 PM

They are not "just assertions," you insulting bugger. I gave you my reasoned argument as to how religions use the afterlife notion as an instrument of control with examples from my own experience, and I'm hardly unique in having endured them. There's is not the slightest scrap of evidence that there is an afterlife, unless you believe in ghosts and ouija boards. I wouldn't put it past you, as you appear to believe in mythology in every area of argument you enter into. It is up to you to provide evidence for outrageously improbable notions, not for me to disprove them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 01:40 PM

If we are discussing religion, forget evidence and proof.
There actually is some evidence for an afterlife, and none against.
No proof though. Sorry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 13 May 17 - 01:43 PM

There actually is some evidence for an afterlife, and none against.
No proof though. Sorry."
Contradiction in terms
Sorry
Hearsay is not evidence
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:08 PM

"Dancing, is, for the most part, attended with many amorous smiles, wanton compliments, unchaste kisses, scurrilous songs and sonnets, effeminate music, lust provoking attire, ridiculous love pranks, all which savor only of sensuality, of raging fleshly lusts. Therefore, it is wholly to be abandoned of all good Christians.

William Prynne" (about 1632)

Some ideas take a long time to modernise.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:09 PM

This is reaching a new low with regard to Keith-gibberish! 😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:13 PM

There actually is some evidence for an afterlife, and none against.

There is plenty of evidence against that is of the same quality as that which is for. Only last night I had a vision that a multicoloured zen goat in a tree told me that there was no afterlife but after eights did exist in all dimensions.

It was pretty convincing and fuck all to do with a gallon of black sheep.

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:18 PM

Haha DMcG, doesn't sit well with the Christian song 'Lord of The Dance'.

'Dance, then, wherever you may be,
For I am the Lord of the Dance', said He.
'And I'll lead you all, wherever you may be,
And I'll lead you all in the dance." said He.

Isn't it interesting that most worldly pleasures have been banned at one time or another by various religions? I admit I'd be done for gluttony and sloth. (Slobbing around on the sofa eating buttered crumpets)

My husband's form of Islam (Sunni) doesn't allow singing or dancing, miserable lot. But apparently, a woman is permitted to 'dance seductively to arouse her husband'!! Mine is still living in hope...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:30 PM

Hearsay is not evidence

There are lots of first hand testimonies for the things I mentioned, and for previous life memories which I forgot.

Not proof, not convincing, but certainly evidence of a sort.
You have none.

Some sects of some religions briefly banned dancing.
Atheist Nazis banned Jazz and Blues.
Atheist Soviets banned Western popular music.

Dave, dreams do not count as evidence.

Do not ask for evidence or proof of religion because there is none, just as there is none against.
Pointless debate. Not interested.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 13 May 17 - 02:41 PM

Near-death experiences have been extensively studied by scientists, and there are many examples online of their research and findings.

They seem to conclude that such phenomena are due to physical causes such as anoxia, too much carbon dioxide, hallucinations produced by opiates such as diamorphine, and other physical brain disturbances.

It's interesting that most NDEs are similar ('light at end of tunnel', visions, voices, sensation of floating etc) which suggest to me they are phenomena associated with unusual brain activity (or lack of)

I can truly say I 'believe' in an afterlife, but there is no way I can prove it. And I would never try to assert such a belief forcefully to anyone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 03:44 PM

It wasn't a dream. It was a vision.

A few thousand years ago Moses heard a burning bush give him 10 rules

2000 years ago Jesus heard the devil tempting him

1400 years ago Mohammed heard the angel Gabriel give him some secrets

Last night a multicoloured goat told me there was no afterlife

Who the hell are you to say which is more valid?

Now, Steve, is it worth getting out the holy bingo balls again?

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 13 May 17 - 03:51 PM

Like I said before, Keith, read the thread.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 13 May 17 - 04:38 PM

If the garden of Eden did exist I think it would be down in West Kerry, the view from the top of the Connor Pass is astonishingly beautiful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:49 PM

There actually is some evidence for an afterlife

And this "evidence" is.....?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 05:59 PM

I found St Patrick's Cabbage at the top of Connor Pass in 1977. It was raining!

Only if you can find a charity shop that can miraculously replace clickety-click and two fat ladies, Dave. And if we are going to photocopy the bingo cards, we must introduce at least some variation. I can't take it any more if thirty old women are going to shout "house!" simultaneously!

True evidence must be robust enough to submit to independent corroboration. Experimental evidence must be repeatable and peer-reviewed. The bar is very high. As I've said before, there is a list of things that are not evidence. The list includes witness, assertion, traditional belief, hearsay, edict, ceremony, myth, miracles, recourse to ancient texts that can't be independently verified, and the sayings of holy men. Silly claims about near-death experiences, ghosts, poltergeists, appearances by the Virgin and similar are not evidence. Anyone who proposes a phenomenon that goes against everything we know about nature, for example the existence of a supernatural deity or an afterlife, is responsible for providing evidence. Failure to do so invites criticism and ridicule.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 May 17 - 06:42 PM

Failure to provide proper evidence invites ridicule? You mean like Portugal winning the Eurovision?

Oh, sorry, wrong thread...

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 May 17 - 08:00 PM

I can prove it, Dave. It came to me in a dream, interrupting as it did my reveries about a couple of somewhat fit fairies at the bottom of the garden.

...Oh, hang on... I was actually watching the show, so it wasn't a dream. And I think the fairies were the nurses on Holby City...

Anyone else noticed that there are at least three times as many beautiful nurses and lady doctors in just the one hospital on Holby City than in all of the rest of the NHS put together? If I ever get sick, that's the place for me! Mind you, I wouldn't be too keen on them squabbling over their sex lives while they were sewing a new kidney into me...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Thompson
Date: 13 May 17 - 09:58 PM

Richard Dawkins is coming to Ireland and is trailing his coat,
suggesting the controversial prayer that opens the proceedings of the Dáil each day should be replaced by a prayer to Thor or the fairies, in hope that he may be prosecuted to test the law. (The link is to the UK paper The Independent rather than The Irish Times, because the latter has taken to paywalling some articles, and being a subscriber I don't know if a piece I link may be unreadable for others.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:18 AM

For Dawkins to do that would be unwise: most countries have laws that can prosecute incitement of various kinds. He could easily fimd himself in court facing a totally different law.

For him to act on that way is a totally different situation to Fry's where he did not set out to provoke but just answered a question put to him.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:58 AM

I found Jim Carroll's quote of the Irish Hierarchy's Statement on Dancing (1925) to be funny and a bit quaint. I suppose that's not a proper way for me to respond, to be merely amused by the thinking of our forbears a hundred years ago. If I had a proper mindset, I suppose I should be appalled and contrite. But I'm not. I just think it's amusing.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 03:24 AM

"Not proof, not convincing, but certainly evidence of a sort."
You have no evidence whatever.
You can't prove a negative for a start and the fact you can't is not "evidence" in any shape or form
Ghosts and after-life have been around since prehistoric times - they appear in literature as far back as Homer and have materialised as drawings on the walls of caves - they have been part of popular superstition for as long has man has worshiped trees and animals
They are primitive man's efforts to explain the unexplained, and in all that time - millions of years - they have never been substantiated - they remain as they started - a primitive invention.
Despite many centuries of research, they remain as they began, the attempts of the primitive mind to explain what they saw or or thought they saw.
Significantly, they were seized on and became the property of ambitious members of societies who used them to their own advantage - shamen, high priests, oracles - and eventually, High Priests, Pontiffs and Prophets.
All organised religions, I believe, are deliberate developments of superstitions which have been capitalised upon by the ambitious.
Superstitions have become mixed in with other aspects of the human condition - curiosity, fear, grief, anger, frustration, desire - unconscious states, like dreaming, hallucination brought on by illness - even drugs and hypnotism.
As society "progressed (?)" and our access to knowledge and understanding increased, beliefs in the supernatural have decreased and our primitive explanations of the world has dissipated
Once they were the meal-tickets of priests and prophets, nowadays they are a handy earner for producers of ham-fisted 'ghost hunting' television programmes aimed at the gullible
Not a single shred of tangible, touchable evidence over millennia should be enough evidence for any sensible person.      
I've spent the last thirty-odd years recording stories of ghosts and afterlife - a few from people who actually believed them but most who didn't but found them entertaining
Did you know that much of the Irish belief in fairies has its basis in the Bronze Age people and that virtually all of it's lisses, and fairy forts are settlements and burial chambers from that period?
The Jack-o'-the-Lantern and the Will-o'-the Wisp turned out to be phosphorus from marsh-gas - our personal 'Jackie' turned out to be the moon shining on our wind-blown New Zealand Flax
Whan very much younger I was a bit of a fan myself with my liking for Bram Stoker, Mary Shelly, H.P. Lovecraft and M R James - I felt the same about H G Wells's and Issac Assimov's flying Saucers and Conan Doyle's Professor Challenger stories - but like Topsy, "I just growed".
Bring your evidence - till then - I've still got Dracula and War of the Worlds and the Lord of the Rings on the bookshelves
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 03:38 AM

Hmm...I don't know Joe, despite the antiquity of the language which has been rendered comical by present day standards, the extract printed by "D McG" is simply saying that promiscuity is bad for society and should not be encouraged.
Surely this is the same message that present day health agencies are attempting to get across to a population which is being re-educated into views which seek to redefine sexual mores and values like monogamy and the creation of family.

Dancing of course is a wonderful experience for those of us fortunate enough to posses a sense of rhythm and a love of music, but in 1625 I suppose could be imagined the thin end of the wedge? :0).

Sexual "liberation" has caused many more problems than it has cured, both in health and social issues.    PFA factsheet.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 03:59 AM

My favourite line in the Bishops' statement on dancing is where it says We well know how so many of our people have of late been awaiting such a declaration as we now issue. Such an exaggerated sense of their own importance; as if the young men and 'maidens' could not decide for themselves about attending a dance.

Yes, it is over 90 years ago. But the arrogance and self importance continues; it is a veey human trait. To me, Richard Dawkins riding in to rescue the poor deluded Irish smacks of the same conceit.

William Pryne's book which I quoted, ake, covers a great deal more than that. It was primarily about attending plays but he soon got into the swing of it and ranted aboutalmost everyrhing he could think about.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:06 AM

"a hundred years ago. I"
The clergy's attitude to dancing and music lasted up to the point when, in co-operation with the government, it helped introduce the 'Dance Halls Act' which destroyed music making in the homes - the crossroads dances had virtually disappeared with the assistance of the parish priest's stick, when he beat the participants and smashed their instruments and outlawed their music.
The churches role in the destruction of Irish music is well established Joe.
I one attended a talk given by one of our finest local fiddle players, Junior Crehan - then into his his 80s
He was one of the most devout Christians I have ever met, yet as he spoke with fondness and pleasure of the kitchen dances and the home music, he ended by looking pointedly at a row of priests and nuns in the audience and said "And my curse on those who destroyed them".
Don't think I've ever seen such an uncomfortable group of people!
Not funny and quaint Joe - tragic and mindlessly destructive
Scotland suffered equally at the hands of the church and the Chapel helped destroy Welsh music.
Traditional music in England never has the same national significance, but I believe that the church played a significant part in damaging 'The Devil's Music' in your neck of the woods
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:14 AM

Gaelic culture was not destroyed by the Church.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:32 AM

"Yes, it is over 90 years ago. But the arrogance and self importance continues; it is a veey human trait. To me, Richard Dawkins riding in to rescue the poor deluded Irish smacks of the same conceit."

Well when the Pope visited Ireland I don't recall indignant non-adherents of his suggesting that he'd "ridden in" to save the poor wretched Irish people. I suppose that if you're one of those people who doesn't agree with Richard Dawkins you're going to see him as riding in to the "rescue of the deluded" wherever he goes. Your remark smacks of a preemptive strike at him. Not that I'm equating Richard Dawkins and the Pope. Richard would be most offended by that


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:35 AM

my wife died on the operating table twice, and they revived her. she said it was just like being asleep.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:43 AM

As I hope I have made clear, I think the blasphemy law should be scrapped. It is nothing to do with whether I agree with Dawkins or not, but when it is right for a celebrity from another country to take on a role. Again as I made clear when Steven Fry accidentally fell foul of this bad law I fully support him defending himself if he wished. But for Dawkins to take it on himself to provoke the law is arrogant. Are there no people on Eire capable of challenging the law? Of course there are.

And the idea that i am making a pre-emptive strike against Dawkins is silly. I am merely challenging whether he is the best person to do it. For my money, it shpuld be a resident of Eire.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:45 AM

Interesting. I don't think I ever actually know that I'm asleep when I'm asleep. If you know what I mean.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:05 AM

"There actually is some evidence for an afterlife, and none against."

Can you supply references from peer-reviewed publications? I'd like to have a look at this evidence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:08 AM

As an aside, I tend to link issues together, so separating threads is not always easy. So I am afraid I have to bring Brexit into this. There is talk at the moment of perhaps "solving" the hard border issue by a reunification of Ireland. There will be a lot of talk about trade and services and such like if that is being promoted. I expect to see very little talk of the fact that NI would be under the laws of Eire which means things like the abortion laws and this blasphemy law. So even if NI voted for reunification these issues could prove a major problem for the future.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:27 AM

"Gaelic culture was not destroyed by the Church."
No it wasn't - it was driven underground
In Scotland it flourished out of reach of the church - In Ireland it was reducced from a flourishing tradition to a faint shadow - the church and state having colluded to drive the people into newly constructed 'Ballrooms of Romance' built for profit - the church's excuse was the protection of the morals of young people.
In Wales, it was as I said
Be happy to se if you had anything more than denials to offer
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:39 AM

Well, DMcG, why did you refer to him as "riding in?" That elicits notions of his entering the country in sparkling armour on his noble steed in order to drive out delusion with missionary zeal. All he's doing is going to Ireland, presumably at someone's invitation. Whether he's the right man, etc., is moot. Last I heard, Ireland has free speech. The Irish people are perfectly capable of weighing up what he has to say.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:55 AM

Why did you refer to him as "riding in?" That elicits notions of his entering the country in sparkling armour on his noble steed in order to drive out delusion with missionary zeal.

Good, that is the image I wanted for him to come in the defend the people of Eire against the blasphemy law. As if they are incapable of doing it by themselves. By all means, be an expert witness called for a case brought by a citizen.

All he's doing is going to Ireland, presumably at someone's invitation. Whether he's the right man, etc., is moot. Last I heard, Ireland has free speech

Well, no, Ireland has free speech subject to the blasphemy law, which is what the thread is about. If all he is doing is going to speak in Ireland and say the same sort of things he normally does, (including the comparisons with Thor,   which is a substandard debating trick and he is capable of better than that) all well and good. But if he goes with the express intention of breaking the law - albeit a bad law - that is a different thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:04 AM

Evidence can be disputed, but it is still evidence.
Just don't ask for proof, because God and the afterlife are not amenable to proof.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:22 AM

What are we going to do about the blasphemers on here, Steve? I mean, Keith has ridiculed our religion saying my vision was just a dream and does not count as evidence. I reckon being tied to the bingo machine while we tell a few dozen old ladies it was all a fix will be punishment enough. We can save the wrath of Lilo Lil for more serious sins such as nicking someone elses beer. As co-messiah you have last say on what is to be done to those who rail against Liverpool.

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:35 AM

I meant that he's perfectly free to go there to speak. They don't put restrictions on foreigners apropos of speech that don't apply to Irish citizens. If the Irish think he's not welcome, they'll let him know. Your is-he-the-right-man argument is specious. Let the risk be his. The Irish don't need protecting from Dawkins.

God and the afterlife have been deliberately put beyond scientific investigation by religions, Keith. They disobey all laws of nature as we know them, and there is very little likelihood that we'll discover new ones that encompass them. They are inventions, Keith, in other words. You've been duped. As for proof, etc., well I can make the most outrageous assertion imaginable and tell you that you can't "prove" I'm wrong. The moons of the planets of Alpha Centauri are made of green cheese and dragons live on them. That is a certainty. Nothing you can come up with will persuade me otherwise. Prove me wrong. God and the afterlife are in precisely the same brackets as that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:39 AM

I try not to mention L*verp**l on match day, Dave, as I'm very superstitious. Kick-off's at 2.15 and it's crucial. Maybe I should pray they'll win. But that means I'm praying for West Ham to lose and their manager's job's on the line as it is, and he's a good socialist. Can nothing be simple?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:46 AM

As I say quite often, I try to stick to stating once, explaining once, and then letting other readers think what they will. I remind those interested that the point was not whether Dawkins was the right man or not but whether he is showing the same sort of arrogance that the Bishops' did in the reports quoted. Now it's up to others to decide: I won't argue it further.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 14 May 17 - 07:11 AM

"Evidence can be disputed, but it is still evidence."

Meaningless waffle. Whatever evidence you are referring to, let's see it. If you don't provide this evidence, then we call safely assume it doesn't exist, as we cannot see it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 07:27 AM

"Just don't ask for proof, because God and the afterlife are not amenable to proof."
And there you have the longest running cop-out ever
"safely assume it doesn't exist, as we cannot see it.
Sort of like his ghosts and bogey-men
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 14 May 17 - 08:32 AM

300!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 08:49 AM

That's a lucky number in some traditions!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 14 May 17 - 10:30 AM

Try reading John B Keanes novel The Bodhran Maker. It gives a very clear and highly amusing insight into the power of the church and it attempts to control pastimes such as dancing.

To my mind a very good book.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jackaroodave
Date: 14 May 17 - 10:37 AM

"Evidence can be disputed, but it is still evidence.
Just don't ask for proof, because God and the afterlife are not amenable to proof."

Keith, as far as I'm concerned, you're welcome to make up your own religion and write the theology as you go along. But you should be aware that you are contradicting Catholic doctrine as expressed by Thomas Aquinas and Vatican Councils I and II. Since amenability to proof is a pretty valuable attribute, by denying it and placing G-d on the same level as Baal or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, you are coming pretty close to . . . . blasphemy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 14 May 17 - 10:56 AM

The plural of anecdote is not data.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:00 AM

No Jackaroodave.
I am not a Catholic, and it is a fact that there is no proof either way of God.

Steve,
It is pointless to refer to the laws of nature.
If there is a God, He is outside of them.

God and the afterlife have been deliberately put beyond scientific investigation by religions, Keith

Another of your baseless assertions disguised as facts.
Religions are too puny to do that.

Stu, I said what evidence there is for life after death.
Such things as ghost sightings, spirit messages, out of body experiences, near death experiences, children's past life memories etc.

Not convincing and not proof, but evidence.
Other explanations for them are easily found, but they remain evidence.
Now, where is the evidence against? Dave's vision?

Ireland's ridiculous blasphemy laws make for much more interesting discussion. Trying to discuss the existence of God gets no-where.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:06 AM

Does GOD
support slavery?

(real question)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:16 AM

"Such things as ghost sightings, spirit messages, out of body experiences, near death experiences, children's past life memories etc

Not convincing and not proof, but evidence.."


Huh? That's a load of words separated by commas. Where is this supposed evidence? I can show you evidence of the existence of Tyrannosaurus rex, evidence that has stood up to robust and thorough scrutiny. Show me the same for a ghost.


"Now, where is the evidence against?"

This is a fallacy. You posit the existence of this "evidence", it's up to you to support your argument with facts and provide evidence of the "evidence", it's not up to anyone else to disprove it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:17 AM

Now, where is the evidence against? Dave's vision?

Of course it is my vision. It is as valid as the visions that other religions are based on. More so because it is contemporary. As evidence it is better than Moses's burning bush, Jesus's devil or Mohamed's anger Gabriel any day! What is your point?

Steve - We have another tenet of our faith. Beer makes you clever. I scarified and reseeded the postage stamp of a lawn today and was wondering how to bed in the new seeds. 1 can of Fosters and 1 can of Hobgoblin later I discovered that an old stainless steel bin and a 50 litre sack of compost make an excellent lightweight roller.

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:21 AM

Sorry for the italics not stopping after "Dave's vision?"

I suspect it was an act of some god or another trying to get his own back.

:D tG

    Or faulty HTML, fixed by Catholic Boy, a brave and bold and virtuous (and virginal) young man riding in on the back of a wing-ed seraph...
    -Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:31 AM

I can show you evidence of the existence of Tyrannosaurus rex, evidence that has stood up to robust and thorough scrutiny. Show me the same for a ghost.

Obviously I can not, but I am aware of a vast number of eye witness reports.
They do not convince me either, but an eye witness report is regarded as evidence in any court.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:32 AM

That's the, er, spirit, Dave!

Your post is a pile of vacuous twaddle, Keith. You can't just claim anything you like and call it evidence. Spirit mediums are frauds and I think you know it. People who report near-death experiences of the "seeing the other side" variety are copycat deludees on the whole. There are no ghosts, goblins, leprechauns, fairies, poltergeists or moving virgins. In all of history there has not been a single corroborated instance of any of those things, nor has God shown himself (I require nothing less than a chariot of fire blazing down from heaven if you don't mind. Whether he's bearded is optional). You're supposed to have a scientific background yet you appear not to know what evidence is. Odd.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:53 AM

Spirit mediums are frauds and I think you know it.

I know that many and probably all are, so I did not reference them.

People who report near-death experiences of the "seeing the other side" variety are copycat deludees on the whole.>/I>

I certainly challenge that baseless assertion disguised as fact.
Do at least some reading. You could start with Wiki.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near-death_experience

A couple of interesting "past life" cases,
https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/feeling-too-much/201412/children-who-seemingly-remember-past-lives


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:54 AM

Sorry,

Spirit mediums are frauds and I think you know it.

I know that many and probably all are, so I did not reference them.

People who report near-death experiences of the "seeing the other side" variety are copycat deludees on the whole.


I certainly challenge that baseless assertion disguised as fact.
Do at least some reading. You could start with Wiki.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near-death_experience

A couple of interesting "past life" cases,
https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/feeling-too-much/201412/children-who-seemingly-remember-past-lives


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 11:56 AM

Eye witness accounts are not counted as evidence in science unless they can be corroborated independently or replicated. Neither is a mass of separate unrelated eye witness accounts. At least you can actually see a hill of beans. I saw ball lightning once, over Epping Forest. Absolutely definitely. Without a shadow of a doubt. No-one else was around to see it as it was in the early hours and I was out trying to get the cat in (I checked for other reports and there were none) and I have no photo and no video. So that's that. My sighting is not evidence for anything. I can't expect anyone to believe me and I wouldn't try. But I saw it. A trained scientist, stone cold sober, clear as a bell, the weather conditions perfect. So what? So nothing, that's what. I haven't made any of that up, but I could have made the whole lot up for all you know. That's eye-witness "evidence" for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 14 May 17 - 12:13 PM

"Obviously I can not, but I am aware of a vast number of eye witness reports.
They do not convince me either, but an eye witness report is regarded as evidence in any court."


Then there isn't a shred of actual evidence.

Also, eyewitness evidence is only of value if it is backed up by empirical evidence. The use of such evidence in court is considered shockingly fallible, and people have been murdered because of it: Why Science Tells Us Not to Rely on Eyewitness Accounts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 01:32 PM

The point Keith 9s making is that although there is no proof for the existence of God, there is plenty of evidence being presented by witnesses.
As an atheist myself, I know very well that there is no evidence at all for the non existence of God.....it is simply a matter of opinion, and I am sure none of you nice "liberal" people want to deprive others of opinions which differ from yours?

Stop trying to obfuscate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:10 PM

As a hypnotist scores of people wanted me to help verify their own opinion of their past lives. I would not. It smacks of spirit mediums and not science, technology and neural science.

Thirty years later, from what I have learned of cosmological theories regarding a holographic universe and a dark matter dimension and a multiverse I have become more 'flexible' in my judgement than Steve Shaw, who I invoke as a baseline of a skeptic. History proves even the most staunch skeptics are sometimes proven wrong in time.

We, the rational, all may be partially right for the wrong reasons.
Facts are fixed until replaced by a fact due to the occasional death of knowledge and gaps between civilizations in time and space.

Truth is a river with eddies and currents that crosses cultures paradigms and POV. There are many rivers; some do not reach the sea, but all have more than facts floating in it. There are all sorts of stuff in the river including lies, conspiracy theories, fearful thoughts, fairy tales and garbage. We all live fairly close to some kind of River of truth. There has always existed a fact shortage in the water.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:11 PM

Anyone any ideas WTF he is on about?

Maybe speaking in tongues?

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:15 PM

One before last. Although the last one was pretty good


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:32 PM

he's saying reality is hard to quantify.
we make qualitative judgements, from our experience - which is of necessity individual. it informed by all sorts of fragments swimming round in our consciousness.
As TS Eliot - 'these fragments i have shored up against my ruin'.
i suppose its the difference between Christian existentialists and atheist existentialists.
Both acknowledge the random nature of existence.
however the Christian existentialist looks upon the world with mysticism - searching for patterns (within and outside himself) which will imply a moral universe.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 May 17 - 02:46 PM

".it is simply a matter of opinion, "
But he claims to have evidence and that we have none
Isn't that obfuswhatsit?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:11 PM

Done it again, haven't you Dave? Go give yourself a good kick in the butt.....two or three kicks!   :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Acme
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:20 PM

There's a reason he often times signs posts with a clown face.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:26 PM

:0)...Oh he really deserved that Acme, the biter bit as it were.

Besides, he was being most insulting to Don who is much more intelligent than Gnome.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:34 PM

No Jim, Keith has put forward examples of people who have experienced God or the works of God, but absolutely no one has any personal evidence that there is no God.

No one can say there is definitely no God, because......


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 04:45 PM

Still not a clue WTF you are on about ake. Still speaking in tongues I see. The clown face reference was from someone who understands the significance so once again you appear to have missed the point. Shame you cannot figure out a village idiot emoticon to sign off with.

:D tG

BTW, Don also knows how to use a forum. Missing the mark twice is pretty bad even for you

:D


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:14 PM

The disputed existence of ghosts/fairies/God/moving virgins is not a matter of opinion. It's a matter of producing evidence by the people who make these claims. If you make a claim that counter-intuitively contradicts all known laws of nature, then it's up to you to try to verify your claim with evidence. Proper evidence if you don't mind. It is not up to the rest of us to "prove" you wrong. The ball is entirely in your court. The existence or otherwise of God can't be a matter of opinion. It's far too important for that. So let's be seeing your evidence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:56 PM

You are indeed fortunate Dave, that you have no need for pictorial evidence of your status in village or forum.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 May 17 - 05:58 PM

What does that mean? Are you on mind-altering stuff? 😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:30 PM

No Jim, Keith has put forward examples of people who have experienced God

Or indigestion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 14 May 17 - 06:52 PM

None of that para crap is evidence, nor is the beauty of a sunset. Evidence = reproducible peer reviewed etc. And "evidence of no god" is a phrase meaningless other than demonstrating in yet another way that you don't know even a little bit what you are talking about. As if further demo were required.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 May 17 - 07:03 PM

Not mind altering, Steve, that would most certainly be an improvement. Anything that could improve the posts of a bitter old man stuck firmly in 1930 with a fixation about anal sex could only be of benefit.

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 14 May 17 - 10:46 PM

i thought you were talking about Donuel's post, Dave.
sorry.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 15 May 17 - 02:28 AM

"No Jim, Keith has put forward examples of people who have experienced God or the works of God, "
No he isn't - he has put up everything from spooks to spiritualists
Don't think he's got round to David Blaine or David Nixon yet - early days!!
"No one can say there is definitely no God, because......"
In two millenia nobody has been able to produce a single shred of evidence of his existence
He remains, like the 'Flat Earth" theory, a primitive attempt to explain the world which has long been discarded
Even the Church has been forced to backtrack on some of its long held outrageous claims like angels and eternal Paradise
Now some of its most fundamental beliefs are being challenged FROM WITHIN
The concept of a supreme being has always been an utter nonsense, yet people have been living under the threat of eternal damnation for questioning it since its inception.
Hypocrites such as yourself target other religions, like Islam, for their faith, yet interference of the minds of children from their earliest days are passed through on the nod as long as the persecutors are of the right colour and culture or if they don't threaten "our jobs and apprentice training schemes"
It is attitudes like this that expose the real threat of religion, or "our traditional values" as you choose to describe it.
Religion, when practiced voluntarily and consciously, is fine.
When the practitioners adhere to the humanistic ("liberal!!!") principles of their religion, it is even to be welcomed and encouraged.
In the hands of bigots and hate-merchants such as yourself, it is tyranny's oldest and most effective weapon.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 May 17 - 04:30 AM

Steve,
Eye witness accounts are not counted as evidence in science

I know, but it is in court which is what I said.
We are not discussing repeatable experimental results.
Ball lightning is a good analogy. It is not yet understood, but numerous observations such as yours show that it is a genuine phenomenon.

Also, eyewitness evidence is only of value if it is backed up by empirical evidence.

In any court, it is regarded as evidence.

. Evidence = reproducible peer reviewed etc.

Not a legal definition.

This is a silly discussion.
I said there is some evidence but no proof, and I have suggested some items of evidence as requested.

The problem is that some here wanted to turn an interesting thread on blasphemy laws into yet another about religion and the existence of God!
Pointless.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:08 AM

From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 May 17 - 04:13 PM

That was funny - nobody outraged.


The comments were made a long time before the complaint and don't appear to have caused a major stir at the time. Fry's comments only really ask questions Christians also ask. At least looking at comments here, elsewhere online and talking to people I know, the impression I have is that most Christians disagree with the idea of a blasphemy law. It doesn't really seem a formula for Christian outrage does it?

Does anyone know anything about the complainant? All I've found is that he wasn't offended but felt a crime had been committed. Was he Christian, atheist or of other belief? Was he aiming to cause Fry hassle? Was he aiming to bring this law to the attention of the public? Perhaps the aim was to trigger Christian outrage? Perhaps something else? It's a bit of a puzzle to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:13 AM

" into yet another about religion and the existence of God!
Pointless."
No Keith inevitable and, unlike religion, logical
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:24 AM

No, Al. There is lot of Donuel's stuff I don't understand but it is generally worth the effort to investigate a bit further.

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:28 AM

The origins of the universe are probably more unbelievable to humanity at our stage of development than God the creator.
I do not think that humanity has much of a future on this planet, certainly the extent and origins of the universe are well beyond the scope of human understanding.

If belief in a just and caring God gives pleasure, comfort and fulfilment to a large part of humanity then I for one agree with Iris Dement....Let the Mystery be!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:35 AM

The job of a court is to hear testimony from every available source and then decide what is and what isn't evidence. That's why we have barristers slugging it out. Just because an assertion from an eye witness is presented to a court doesn't mean it will be accepted as evidence. Corroboration will always be required, if the court is fair and if justice is to be done. You are very confused about this despite your alleged scientific background. My standalone observation of ball lightning means nothing unless someone, preferably several someones, completely independent of me, also saw it at the same time and give descriptions that tally with mine.   My careful description may well be added to the general body of alleged sightings, but it in no way confirms either that the phenomenon is real or that ball lightning is what I saw. I appear to be denigrating myself, but, as a scientist, I am trained to treat all evidence with scepticism, in case it isn't evidence at all. There's no other way if knowledge is to be advanced.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 15 May 17 - 06:50 AM

"there is plenty of evidence being presented by witnesses."

Then where is it? All I'm suggesting that to make a statement saying there is evidence for whatever is being discussed and not producing said evidence makes the original statement worthless; it's not based on any firm, empirical fact.

When that evidence is produced, then it should be subject to scrutiny and testing.

"Stop trying to obfuscate."

Asking for evidence isn't obsfucation, just the opposite. It's healthy to be skeptical and ask questions. It's how science works, it's how we discover new facts. Take nothing for granted, be open-minded and find out for yourself.


"I am sure none of you nice "liberal" people want to deprive others of opinions which differ from yours?"

Oh grow up Ake. What's the point of this statement? It's ignorant and reeks of insecurity and doubt.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 May 17 - 07:28 AM

Steve,
Just because an assertion from an eye witness is presented to a court doesn't mean it will be accepted as evidence

Yes it does.
Along with any evidence to the contrary.

Corroboration will always be required, if the court is fair and if justice is to be done.

No. Corroboration just adds weight to the evidence.
Justice is done when the evidence is all put in the balance.

You are very confused about this despite your alleged scientific background.

As I have just shown, the confusion is yours and has nothing to do with science.

it in no way confirms either that the phenomenon is real or that ball lightning is what I saw

Yes. I thought I said that.

Stu.,
All I'm suggesting that to make a statement saying there is evidence for whatever is being discussed and not producing said evidence makes the original statement worthless; it's not based on any firm, empirical fact.

There are no firm facts. I described such evidence as there is.

When that evidence is produced, then it should be subject to scrutiny and testing

That would be good, but how?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 07:41 AM

So if I tell the court that I was not in the area at the time of the burglary, even though I was, and get my friend to lie to that effect on my behalf, am I presenting evidence?

If you can't produce testable evidence for apparitions, ghosts, the afterlife or the existence of God, you are not producing evidence at all. You are presenting unsupported assertions, then you have the cheek to ask US to show that you're wrong. Frankly, you have no evidence for any of these alleged phenomena. Uncorroborated witness is not acceptable evidence. As a scientist I would never discount the possibility that you may one day present real evidence. Until then the burden of proof falls entirely on you and you're failing abysmally.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 15 May 17 - 07:56 AM

I find it odd that people who correctly roll their eyes and explain for the ten thousanth time that when a scientist uses the word 'theory' it has a special precise meaning that is different to the word 'theory' in everyday speech are unable to recognise that when scientist uses the word 'evidence' it is also different from the everyday usage.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 08:22 AM

Well it is different, I admit. But we could always modify the everyday use of the word "evidence" by calling it "acceptable evidence" or "honest evidence" or "evidence that stands up to scrutiny." Try applying any of those to, say, St Bernadette's claims and see where that gets us. My ball lightning claim isn't acceptable as it stands because no-one corroborated it. That makes my claimed sighting of passing interest only. Honest? How do you know I'm not making the whole thing up? You don't. If you'd known me for years as a man of integrity you might be more confident that I wasn't lying, but you still wouldn't know whether or not I was deluded or whether I dreamt it. Does it stand up to scrutiny? Well if you viewed me as a sober man of integrity you'd be inclined to take me seriously, but you wouldn't exactly stake your life on it, would you? The best you could do is say that the jury's out. And that's the best-case scenario. Of passing interest only. The witness claims to ghosts, fairies, Godly visions and the like that I've heard about seem far more dodgy to me. Ulterior motives abound.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 May 17 - 08:51 AM

If you can't produce testable evidence

I was just asked for evidence, now it must be "testable" ?
If you had asked for "testable evidence," as with proof, I would have told you there can be none.

So if I tell the court that I was not in the area at the time of the burglary, even though I was, and get my friend to lie to that effect on my behalf, am I presenting evidence?

It would be false evidence.
Are you suggesting that everyone who describes any of those things I listed is lying?
That is ridiculous.
The explanation may not be spiritual, but it is ludicrous to suggest that so many people from so many lands and cultures over so many centuries are all colluding in trying to deceive atheists!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 May 17 - 08:52 AM

What does the legal field have to do with whether something is evidence or not? We're talking science, not courtroom. Even in courts, eyewitnesses aren't considered believable, read anything about it, till backed up by actual evidence, like data. Seriously. That's like saying you can't call a person Trans if their molecules don't have atoms on opposite sides of their molecules - entirely different magisteria. What a maroon!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:09 AM

"There are no firm facts."

There are apparently, no empirical facts at all.


"That would be good, but how?"

Seriously? How do people discover new medicines? Send rockets to the moon? etc etc


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:09 AM

We're talking science

I am not.
I was just asked for evidence, not testable evidence.
If you had asked for "testable evidence," as with proof, I would have told you there can be none.
What has Science to do with any of this.
Science is about the laws of nature. If there is a God by definition they do not apply to God.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:22 AM

In discussions about the ethereal I write from the right hemisphere for your right hemispheres. To speak of a god it is only fitting don't you think?

If you have had a god experience it was certainly a temporal lobe and right brained experience.

Certainly I am against all autocratic blasphemy laws. It is the action of a fundamentalist without scruples, morality or the words to express a personal experience that is reduced by left brained people as insanity.

Even Steve Shaw would change his mind after a five year relationship with magic mushrooms. Shrooms are a valuable tool for those who reduce consciousness to a conscious left brained experience. It should be a requirement for all who engage in religious caretaking and scholarly awareness.

I do not see why anyone should not understand facts are the poetic particle while truth is a changeable wave. Facts are fixed while truth is a culturally changeable fluid. Insight demands a combination of more than both in a quantum state sense.

If you still do not understand, you must not punish those who do, don't you think? There is not a chasm between religion and science that people think there is.

Life itself, even a microbe, is the technology we are just now understanding has answers billions of years old or newly emerging and evolving, unlike the latest MS app.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:38 AM

"Are you suggesting that everyone who describes any of those things I listed is lying?"

They are either lying or they are deluded, one or the other, possibly both. That is almost certain. Almost.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:40 AM

We're talking science......

I am not.


Correct, Professsor. You're talking rubbish.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:45 AM

"The problem here is that some wanted to turn an interesting thread on Blasphemy laws into another yet another about religion and the existence of God!"

Would someone care to explain the word Blasphemy to the professor.

OK professor here you go. A dictionary definition of Blasphemy: The action or offence of speaking sacrilegiously about God or sacred things"

If you can separate the two I would be astonished.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:54 AM

Question.

Who decided that a god was beyond the law of nature.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:57 AM

Answer: people who wanted God to be beyond scrutiny by rational enquiry. Religious leaders in other words.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 15 May 17 - 10:22 AM

"Science is about the laws of nature.

There isn't anything else though, unless you have faith and don't require EVIDENCE. Which is fine, as long as you don't try to convince everyone else they are wrong.


"If there is a God by definition they do not apply to God."

How convenient. This must also work for ghosts, alien abduction, the yeti, sea serpents, spiritualism, clairvoyance, homeopathy, the flying spaghetti monster etc etc


"They are either lying or they are deluded, one or the other, possibly both. That is almost certain. Almost."

Way too harsh a judgement. People can be mistaken for any number of reasons, seeing explicable phenomena in conditions that they are not used to and leading to misidentification.

Alternatively they might see something they cannot comprehend and don't have the language to describe. If you travelled back in time in a helicopter 4,000 years ago and flew round and round Stonehenge then whizzed back to the present how would the locals have interpreted this? A helicopter is an object that can be explained by science, is subject the laws of physics (agh!) and is totally explicable... but unless you understand something of how it is made, why it flies etc etc. you could never accurately discern it's true nature. To one of our ancestors standing by the bluestones it would appear totally mystifying, so how could this person explain their sighting of a helicopter to their family and friends? They can describe something but will not know what they were looking at all, and are unlikely to come up with the correct explanation at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 15 May 17 - 10:53 AM

put the right lobe in
the right lobe out
in out, in out
shake it all about


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:10 AM


We're talking science......


If we are, we are on the wrong track because the topic is about law, not science. And odd though it may seem, creating and prosecuting under a blasphemy law does not require a belief in God yourself, whether you or police, cps, barrister or judge.

Or even law maker.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:25 AM

Keith, you can't ask on the one hand for evidence, and then claim you aren't asking for evidence. You wanted an example of religious idiocy, here you are:

Me: We're talking science

You: I am not.
I was just asked for evidence...What has Science to do with any of this.

Best laugh of the day, so far!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:33 AM

I provided numerous examples of religious idiocy and awful ideas outside this thread as well. Those were ignored too, Mrrzy. You are not on your own :-)

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:34 AM

I know many people with evidence of the existence of God, this evidence convinces them that they are correct to hold a faith.
I have never encountered anyone with evidence that God does not exist.

I have personal evidence which cannot be explained by science, I hesitate to say that it proves the existence of God, but it certainly cannot be explained scientifically.
I am an atheist, so I take some convincing, but others may be more amenable to the possibility.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:39 AM

Or faulty HTML, fixed by Catholic Boy, a brave and bold and virtuous (and virginal) young man riding in on the back of a wing-ed seraph...

Failed to notice that earlier - Thanks for the correction and the laugh, Joe :-)

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 15 May 17 - 11:47 AM

I know many people with evidence of the existence of God

Provide some then. If you do not know the rules for evidence just read back up the thread.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 15 May 17 - 12:05 PM

Evidence for the existence of god .......................

This should be interesting ....................

Come on Ake, I'm all ears.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 15 May 17 - 12:17 PM

"I have never encountered anyone with evidence that God does not exist."

That's because if a person says god exists, it's up to them to supply the evidence, not the person who disagrees. Science can't prove god doesn't exist (if it wanted too, I can't see the point myself), but perhaps one day could prove she does. It's typical of human arrogance to think we have all the answers, or ever will have*.

If we need external validation to prove god exists or not then our faith must be rather brittle and we're getting the wrong end of the stick. It shouldn't matter what anyone else believes, let them get on with it as long as they're not hurting anyone.

This is why the whole blasphemy business with Fry was overblown; to his mind it simply isn't blasphemy as he doesn't believe in god. Am I to get the hump every time I see the pope or a vicar on TV because I eschew Abrahamic religion?


"I have personal evidence which cannot be explained by science"

I guess we all might have in our own mind, but don't expect anyone to take our word that it's anything more than our own personal experience. If we want to convince people otherwise, then we have to supply that evidence.



*I'm willing to concede I might be very wrong about all this, and when I keff it I will be hauled up before St. Peter who will then tell me that despite trying to be a good person to be informed my lack of faith has condemned me to eternal damnation and devils sticking forks up me arse. I'll ask for a word with God before I take the elevator down because if no-one here will answer the questions about suffering etc, I'd like to ask him myself. If I have got it wrong though, I hope I find my way to Valhalla, to drink in those mighty halls!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 12:21 PM

Well, Stu, deluded, mistaken, taken in, hoodwinked, tricked, bamboozled, confused, take yer pick. A helicopter to the ancients would be a mystifying and terrifying object. But they could be brave and touch it, hear it make a noise, feel the wind from the blades, see it set off and land and even speak to the chap flying it. You can't do any of that earthly, normal stuff with a ghost, a moving virgin or an invisible God. So if you embrace such phenomena as true, you're a bit daft, aren't you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 15 May 17 - 01:05 PM

As I understand it, Stu, the rules and regulations for Valhalla require you to die in battle. Did you have an opponent in mind?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 15 May 17 - 02:50 PM

Ever notice that helicopter blades look like wheels within wheels.

Everyone has a view about time which fails the smell test.

You only think you know time.

I chide Steve specifically because I know he has the maturity to think in stride or chew gum and walk. ;) He too thinks he knows how time works. I bet he knows Newtonian gravity by formula. He only knows what it is to him.
Now suppose I speak to all of you at once;
I put it to you that your idea of time and other phenomena is an illusion. You think you are right for the right reasons but that too is flawed. All the arguments you rely upon will ultimately fool you.
You are not a fool but a Maxwell or Einstein you are not.

Based on what you know, you are in good company but we all do not know enough to claim certainty beyond any exceptions. It is the exception to the rule that moves discovery and knowledge forward.

I believe you all. You haven't a ken to everything I am suggesting,
you only can think what I mean from your own experience. None of us will experience everything. Certainty is your enemy, uncertainty is your friend.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:13 PM

Man is the most insane species. He worships an invisible God and destroys a visible Nature, unaware that this Nature he's destroying is this God he's worshiping.

- Hubert Reeves


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 15 May 17 - 05:20 PM

Once upon a Monday dreary
pondering the forum's hearsay
there came a bumping
a thumping on my front porch door
What the hell is that I implore
Prob'ly some salesman for the roof
I swung the door open Whoosh...
Huge sad eyes seemed to say to me.
quote the philosophy cow, "moot"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 May 17 - 06:47 PM

Ha ha ha ha ha! The philosophy cow meets the interrupting cow!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 May 17 - 08:28 PM

Oh, yeah, back to the thread: New Zealand is scrapping its blasphemy laws in the wake of all this... (blicky.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 15 May 17 - 08:44 PM

This will have a better conclusion for Steven Fry than in his movie V is for Vendetta.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 May 17 - 09:27 PM

Your uncertainty principle chimes with me, Donuel.

To revisit this, suitably stung by Stu's rebuke:

"To one of our ancestors standing by the bluestones it would appear totally mystifying, so how could this person explain their sighting of a helicopter to their family and friends? They can describe something but will not know what they were looking at all, and are unlikely to come up with the correct explanation at all."

Unfortunately, humans seem to suffer from a particular drawback of having such fine imaginations, that they are quite likely to come with an incorrect explanation. A really rational Stonehenge fellow might have worked at least something out about the helicopter. He might have seen an ash key taking much longer to reach the ground due to the rotation on its falling. Had he helped to trundle the bluestones from Preseli he might have articulated in his mind a connection between locomotion and the noise it generates. Feeling the wind from the blades he might have even realised that air was being pushed away and that that had something to do with the lift. After all, he'd seen plenty of birds in flight and seen the wing-energy they have to put in. He might even have felt the draught from a bird's wings as it passed him close. All that sounds a bit hard for our Druidic fellow, and it still wouldn't get him close to bearings, universal joints, compression and internal combustion. So, like the rest of us, he might have been inclined, had his rationality deserted him, to reach for a simpler, one-step explanation, that the flying monster had been sent by the gods to frighten him. I see a parallel there with the way that many people of faith will avoid the complexities of really trying to study all the facets of nature in order to get closer to the truth, settling instead for the most abject pseudo-explanation of all, that it was all just put there by God. That's all so easy but it's also an abysmal dereliction of intellect and it renders us vulnerable to exploitation and control. If a God really has made us to be so intelligent, he'd be a bit cross about that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 16 May 17 - 02:55 AM

No se puede creer!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Monique
Date: 16 May 17 - 02:58 AM

I wonder how the Stonehenge guy would have explained radioactivity that noone can see, hear, smell...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 16 May 17 - 03:45 AM

If you want to discuss God, real or hypothetical, you have to get the concept straight.
A being limited and restricted by the laws of science is not god-like.
By definition a god is outside of and transcending the laws of science, and has control over them.
So forget science.

Likewise evidence. Testimony about a person's own personal experience is evidence. There may be more than one explanation of it (eg perjury Steve) but it is evidence. "The evidence I shall give..."

Denying those simple facts, or saying they gave you "the biggest laugh of the day" just puts the joke on you.

I am not and would not try to prove the existence of God, just responding to the claim of "no evidence."

There is lots, and I have just thought of some scientific evidence.
Not proof. There are alternative explanations, but evidence it is.

1. The Anthropocentric Theory of the Universe. Look it up.

2. Life on Earth.
All known life forms have one single common ancestor. There is no evidence for more than one, single, "miraculous" act of creation, and human science has so far failed to replicate what is supposed to have happened spontaneously by accident!

Likewise the creation of the first complex cell, leading to complex, multicellular organisms.
There is no evidence for more than one, single, "miraculous" event, and human science has so far failed to replicate what is supposed to have happened spontaneously by accident!

Spooky, as Einstein said about another aspect of science.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 07:39 AM

Heil Heisenberg

My god pov is about our brain individually and collectively, made from the universe that it is made for, to sense some of the sea we live in.

Ancient Architecture is the obvious remainder from a venture into a desire for perfection. Perfection is often coupled with a god notion but not always. Hindu temples and roman villas with mosaics are different yet amazing. Likewise the god notion was not always the motivation for the music of Bach.

Many easily accept the notion the Earth has a consciousness. The idea the Universe has a consciousness is heresy to some but seems no be a natural out growth of information.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 16 May 17 - 07:46 AM

"So, like the rest of us, he might have been inclined, had his rationality deserted him,"

Rationality has nothing to do with it. The culture they are part of don't see the world the way we do; they have no frame of reference to help them understand that a mechanism as complex as a helicopter could exist, let alone be explicable by our science, that is impossibly complex for them to imagine. They could never conceive that folk could build such a thing (were you to sit one of these folk down and explain how it works or bring them back and show them how it's made they might get it as they were intelligent people, but without that explanation they would struggle). The people who built Stonehenge understood the motion of the stars and planets but did they actually understand the true nature of a star or the size and age of the universe? Did they understand the solar wind, magnetic fields, structure of the galaxy, nuclear reactions, gamma rays, x-rays, photons etc?

As humans we struggle with the idea of something being unknowable and seek to explain everything we perceive one way or another; it's why science works hard to avoid bias and a priori assumption. When people think they've seen a ghost they might not be stupid or lying, but might be explaining what they saw in the only terms they know how.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 May 17 - 07:58 AM

If those are the only terms they know then they are, by definition, ignorant. Might not be their fault, but it is definitely ignorance.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 May 17 - 08:05 AM

the thing about God.

on some he showers his blessings.

the rest of us. he can't really decide whether to bite us in the bum or on the balls.

why did he plant so many ukuleles in the world, and then make it so hard to play?

God is a conundrum in his pyjamas, eating a choc ice.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 16 May 17 - 08:09 AM

Mrrzy: Ignorant relative to what? Our standards now? Their standards 4,000ya? Is an Amazonian Indian that knows the use of every species of plant in his forest ignorant because he can't work a smartphone?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 May 17 - 08:23 AM

Rationality has everything to do with it. Faced with complexity and unfamiliar phenomena, there are two options. You can try to make sense of what's in front of you using all your amassed powers of reasoning, your experience and your knowledge, accepting that you'll never crack every puzzle confronting you, but deciding that that will merely spur you on to further enthusiastic enquiry. A very tough but delicious road ahead. You should know, Stu. You're a scientist. Or you can take the easy path and settle on pseudo-explanations involving magic and impossible deities, notions probably constructed by someone else, maybe your tribal or religious leaders, who have their motives. That's the path of irrationality. That won't strain your mind like science does. If we're here for any reason, we're here in order to strain our minds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 09:26 AM

Big AL
I always thought the lowly ukulele is the easiest of all instruments.
Maybe yours needs a serious set up and adjustment. If that's not the problem it is perfectly fine to blame god.

I am in year 2 of the ukelele. I think I have it half mastered and will for the rest of my life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 16 May 17 - 09:46 AM

I'm being clumsy in the way I'm putting my point across, I think we're talking at cross purposes. I don't disagree with anything you say Steve, but:

"You can try to make sense of what's in front of you using all your amassed powers of reasoning, your experience and your knowledge"

All I'm saying is not everyone has the same experience or knowledge that enables them to decide in the same way as you or I might. There are variations of understanding within a local population, then variations in understanding informed by worldview in different cultures. I don't think all folk who have faith or believe in the supernatural are wrong, liars or idiots (these occur everywhere in every society), I think some people have a different viewpoint altogether.

It's obvious also that even amongst as small group such as us here we have different definitions of what constitutes evidence. For a scientist evidence is empirical and observable and can be subject to be checks and verification, for a ghost-hunter it's what someone said they saw and that's enough. I think the ghost-hunter is very wrong, but it's also quite possible I'm wrong. However, in my opinion the scientific method is the best way we have of discovering empirical truth as we define it in our society. Out in the Amazon, I'm sure they think I'm deluded or stupid.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 16 May 17 - 09:56 AM

In a science fiction book I read many years ago they referred to a particular cult who kept their hair long for religious reasons. Those reasons had been lost in time but the reader is told it is because their god had, millennia ago, told them to not let anyone mess with their heads.

On a re-creation of Iron Age culture that was on TV a good while back they discovered why Iron Age round huts had troughs across the doorways. Some had assumed it was to keep out the water. Others postulated it had some spiritual significance. The actual reason was that the free range chickens did it searching for food while sheltering.

Different experience and knowledge indeed, Stu. the only thing I am absolutely certain of is that I know far too little!

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 10:26 AM

Dave you know 10 to the 5th more than Trump, 10 to the 4 more than his wife, 10 to the 3 more than me, 10 to the 2 more than you think and 10 times more than Alfred E Neuman.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 May 17 - 11:05 AM

"All I'm saying is not everyone has the same experience or knowledge that enables them to decide in the same way as you or I might. There are variations of understanding within a local population, then variations in understanding informed by worldview in different cultures."

Science began when a human, or a pre-human even, first looked up at the moon and stars and decided to take the tough path of trying to work out what he was really seeing. Some of his mates who lived just down the cursor from him saw the same thing but took the easy path, assuming that they were seeing magic beyond all understanding. They probably had a better time down the Capstone And Chisel that evening, playing their bone flutes and their bone bones, then went home, having stopped off to sacrifice a goat or two in awe of the magician-in-the-sky, to scare the wife and kids before gorging on roast sabre-tooth. Yer man would have sat out for longer on top of the dolmen, heavily-boned brow furrowed, seeing how the moon and stars had moved since he last looked, which got him thinking even more...the first scientists were geniuses who didn't need understanding but who saw the need to develop understanding. They were the heroes who wanted to get at the magic of the real truth. I should think they were in a minority, but, without them, we wouldn't be here today. Down the centuries, they've been up against quite a lot, as Galileo and Darwin would tell you (I was at Galileo's grand tomb last week in Florence, by the way, in Santa Croce basilica. Something ironic about that honour accorded him by the Catholics, I thought...)

We haven't changed much, have we?

I don't think that people who believe in the supernatural are liars or idiots, but I do think they are almost certainly wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: keberoxu
Date: 16 May 17 - 12:21 PM

ermm ... interrupting cow ? ! say what?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 16 May 17 - 02:44 PM

I like that line given to Gene Kelly in "Inherit the Wind":

"Darwin was wrong. Man's STILL an ape!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 May 17 - 03:27 PM

i only took up the uke this year - it sounds awful.

George Formby is god.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:22 PM

I got a baritone uke with two metal martin stings on the bottom and nylon on top. Once the buzzing went away after year one it got better with pure tone and vibrato. I do classical, film scores, folk, slow jazz and old pop but only as a solo instrument. But if you ever played guitar, which I never did, I bet you can still accompany and finger pick.
Oh, I go with tuning in 5ths, like a deep mandolin.


PS I'll be Spencer Tracy and Ake can be the prosecutor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 May 17 - 04:34 PM

well i fell in love with a tenor uke that i saw in music shop. then i got a baritone and to be like everyone else a soprano one - both off the net for about thirty quid.

my ambition is to kick some ceildh band up the ass with a few formbyesque flourishes.

however easier said than done. i can't say the almighty is really pulling his weight on this one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 16 May 17 - 07:58 PM

George Formby song writer for Herman's Hermits ;^)

His syncopation is superb.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 May 17 - 10:18 PM

yeh a imagine a drum machine or a computer programme that could deal with those sort of tempo changes - same is true of the way Lightnin Hopkins plays guitar - that's where modern music has gone wrong, wrong , wrong....!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 May 17 - 10:40 PM

Stu, ignorant = without knowledge. It is not a value judgment, it is a description. Your plant-knowledgeable example may well be ignorant of smartphones, but they might not. I have a doctorate in my field and *I*'m ignorant when it comes to smart phones. In fact, today I had to call the sales people to ask how to not answer the phone, I kid you not, because I kept sending a robot to voicemail.

In my experience, Americans who went to public schools tend to be extremely ignorant.

The people who marched with torches through my town are uncivilized *and* likely also ignorant, but I won't use ignorant as an insult for them for being bigoted assholes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 16 May 17 - 10:44 PM

Also, I never realized that was Gene Kelly in Inherit the Wind, and I've seen that movie dozens of times.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:11 AM

I don't know about evidence of the non existence of God, but wouldn't you think Auschwitz was a pretty convincing argument of the non existence of a God of Love?

I think maybe it was along those lines Frost was thinking - and i imagine that's a pretty common thought.

i have heard theories about being in a state of grace because of suffering. However when I think of the early days of Denise's disease, when she suffered terribly, I could see nothing ennobling in suffering.

You have to remember that the people who thought up these theories and thoughts were living in days before famine relief, modern medicine, even modern armaments with which to defend themselves from cruel enemies.

It was people like this who wrote the Book of Job, where Job asks God what have I done to offend thee? they had to make sense of the suffering life confronted them with.

The truth is that then as now, it made and makes no sense.

And the corollary of this is that we should try and be nice to each other - whatever the provocation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:18 AM

The issue of suffering is a problem that all Christians must wrestle with.
I would be suspicious of any who claim never to have doubts.

Auschwitz was a human crime. Christians believe God gave us free will instead of making us puppets.
Crimes like Auschwitz are a consequence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:26 AM

I think it was people who created Auschwitz, Al, not God. But I think Auschwitz is proof that God doesn't write the script of our lives. As for Job, the book does a good job of exploring suffering, but doesn't give many answers. It does refute the idea that our suffering is punishment for our own wrongdoing.
Joe


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 18 May 17 - 07:28 AM

People create holocausts. That's what Al said Joe


For men and women educated in a religious construct of life the overwhelming emotion of abandonment was pervasive in the camps.
We are all touched by the most evil ignorance and the most loving genius among us and every variant in between.

Reconciling our unique exposures to extremes makes us who we are.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 May 17 - 08:14 AM

I've heard the words 'free will' so often regarding God. Okay, so we all have free will; the perpetrators of horrendous crimes against humanity had 'free will'. But the victims didn't! The innocent people suffering all sorts of terrible situations had no choice or free will at all.

I can't accept in my heart of hearts a God who, despite being all-powerful and benevolent, watches all this pain and horror, yet does nothing whatsoever to put a stop to any of it. It's probable that He could, but He doesn't. I find that cold, uncaring and rather sinister.

It seems to me we're at the mercy of the wicked with no support from this 'loving' God, and no intervention on our behalf.
I quite see how Stephen Fry has arrived at his conclusions.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 09:04 AM

People may have created the Holocaust but they didn't create the Plague, or HIV, or the Boxing Day tsunami. I smell a cop-out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 18 May 17 - 09:29 AM

"Crimes like Auschwitz are a consequence."

So why didn't god intervene? Why allow people to suffer so horribly. In fact, why invent suffering at all... is it a test of faith?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 May 17 - 09:35 AM

To be honest (and I can hear the Blasphemy Police coming up the path already!) I find the whole story of the Crucifixion absolutely ghastly too. This was God's Son, and apparently He had to die (not sure why, but there you are). Could he not have died in his sleep aged 100? Or fallen in the Sea of Galilee and quickly drowned? Apparently every whiplash and every nail hammered in was 'for us'. I don't get this at all. It was the most agonising death, presumably watched over by God (his Father) and imagine the dreadful suffering of Mary, His mother.

As you say Steve, humans did not create deadly diseases or natural disasters. We had no 'choice' in any of those.
Even the suffering of various types of wildlife I find enormously distressing. Drought and starvation, exploitation and cruelty.
God must be quite a strange entity, to be able to view all this yet do nothing to alleviate any of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 May 17 - 10:26 AM

God must be quite a strange entity

As anyone who has read the Old Testament knows all too well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 May 17 - 01:43 PM

Another thing I find odd is prayer. One prays for various things, and God either does or doesn't come up to the mark. One child might be cured, but He doesn't do much for the one in the next hospital bed.

It seems very arbitrary to me. Thousands go off to Lourdes, but most come back no better at all. Maybe they receive strength to bear their diseases, but could they not have obtained that by staying at home?

The very religious would say that God knows better than us what He's doing (God's will and all that) but that merely gives Him a free pass to cover His actions/non-actions. It's the religious equivalent of a 'tut' and a huge shrug of the shoulders!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 01:53 PM

My dad's always said that he'll believe in Lourdes when a one-legged man comes back with two legs.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 May 17 - 01:53 PM

The very religious would say that God knows better than us what He's doing

That's also what his supporters & defenders say about Trump.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 18 May 17 - 01:57 PM

why do our prayers always go out WITH the family instead of for or to the family?

On a good day Religion can alleviate debilitating grief, guilt or fear. Isn't it better to learn from guilt and fear?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 18 May 17 - 02:03 PM

Literalists rule in "liberal" heaven.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 02:04 PM

Steve Shaw says: People may have created the Holocaust but they didn't create the Plague, or HIV, or the Boxing Day tsunami. I smell a cop-out.

Stu asks (about Auschwitz): So why didn't god intervene? Why allow people to suffer so horribly. In fact, why invent suffering at all... is it a test of faith?

Well, Stu, I guess Auschwitz pretty much rules out the idea of an interventionist God for me. And the Plague and HIV and tsunamis reinforce that. So, I don't go looking for a God that causes or prevents such tragedies. I think all those things are governed by the Laws of Science. From my own faith tradition, I see a divine presence in the Laws of Science, but I do not see a God who can or would contradict those laws. That would be illogical. I do, however, see a God who gives meaning to those laws and helps me find reason for hope.

I come from a Catholic/Christian tradition, and that is the lens through which I ponder that which surrounds me - my Weltanschauung, if you will. My tradition has a "belief system," a written and oral outline that is shared among those who stem from that tradition. I accept that "belief system" as my own - because it has been my own for all my life. It wasn't imposed on me - I grew up in it. For the most part, that tradition is consistent within itself - it makes sense to those who hold that tradition, with a broad spectrum of understandings within that tradition. Within that tradition, God exists. Outside that tradition, God may or may not exist.

I find that most religious traditions, most belief systems, are consistent and valid within themselves. People don't believe things that don't make sense to them. These traditions are also much broader and more realistic than people from the outside see them to be. I see value in all of them as honest human attempts to ponder the universe. I also see validity and consistency in atheist perspectives. While I hold to my Catholic tradition because that's where I come from, I try my best to understand and value all perspectives and traditions I encounter. I make no attempt to refute them. Why should I need to? I can find validity and aspects of truth in all of them.

But that being said, I do find the Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins perspective limiting - because it finds its essence in attempting to prove others wrong. To me, it seems to be a dualistic perspective, one that is able to find only one correct answer to a question. Dualistic perspectives seem to see things as good/bad, black/white, right/wrong. On top of that, I find an annoying similarity between Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins and born-again Christians, who have a similar dualism that comes up with completely opposite answers.

The standard question that people ask about religious traditions, is what do these people believe. And then the questioner expects a list of things that the questioner can then judge to be right or wrong. I think a better question might be: who are these people? Part of who these people are, is their belief system. And the belief system is neither right or wrong - it simply IS. Part of understanding a people, is to understand (and respect) their belief system.

So, who am I? Well, I was brought up in a Catholic family and had 16 years of Catholic education (8 in a seminary, fer chrissake), so I might as well be Catholic. For me to be anything other than Catholic, would be inauthentic. That might not be true for others, but it's true for me. I know all the rituals and stories and traditions and oddities, and I find them to be rich and interesting and often funny - and sometimes deplorable. But they're the tradition I come from. I don't view my "belief system" as an ideology that must be right or wrong - it just is.

I also find great value in a wide variety of other faith traditions, particularly Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism - and atheism. I try to understand all of these perspectives, but I feel no temptation to take them as my own - because they aren't who I am. My wife, on the other hand, practices what she calls "women's spirituality" - a mix of Celtic, Asian, and Native American traditions and practices and perspectives that she and other women have developed through long association. It doesn't feel authentic to me, but it works very well for her; so I do my best to understand and respect that. I wouldn't dream of trying to prove her wrong, and she wouldn't dream of trying to prove me wrong - because that shouldn't be the question.

For the most part, people use their religious perspectives to explore and understand and appreciate the universe that surrounds and mystifies them. For some people, their belief system depends on finding right and wrong answers, but I find that limiting. Seems to work for them, though. So, you Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins people, do your thing. Just remember how much you have in common with the born-again Christians.

Maybe there isn't a whole lot of value in trying to prove other people wrong. There ought to be more to life than that.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 May 17 - 03:47 PM

I guess Auschwitz pretty much rules out the idea of an interventionist God for me.

So what then IS his/her job description? What exactly does He/she do?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 03:58 PM

Well, Greg, most religions agree that God is ultimately unknowable. I think believers satisfy themselves with glimpses of what God might happen to be. I see God as That which is beyond us, and within us. Perhaps God is an essence, and perhaps not. Since I'm basically an optimistic person, I see God as the embodiment of optimism, a source of hope against all odds. If I were a pessimist, I might be likely to see God as controlling and vengeful. But I see God as offering possibilities and alternatives and freedom.

Different strokes for different folks.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:12 PM

Understood, Joe with thanks & I appreciate what you've said - but you didn't answer the question.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:29 PM

God is ultimately unknowable because religions have made him unknowable, a quite deliberate ploy in order to make him invulnerable to scrutiny. For belt and braces, religions have traditionally had severe blasphemy laws in place in order to stop people from even thinking of scrutinising him.

As God created everything, presumably he created the laws of science, the same laws that brought about the plague, HIV and the Boxing Day tsunami. You don't get him off that lightly, I'm afraid.

You have the Dawkins/Hitchens/Steve brigade (😁) all wrong, Joe. Our basic premise is that we do NOT have the answers, the only way that answers can be found being through honest scientific endeavour. That is the most UNlimiting thing I can think of. Your answers are far too easy for for our towering intellects, so unchallenging, So limiting. Everything put there by an omnipotent yet invisible God who continues to provide a driving force. End of, Joe. That's too abject for words. By the way, there is no place for divine intervention in the laws of nature. You can't bolt magic on to stuff that works so well. You'll just spoil it. The garden is already lovely enough without putting fairies at the bottom of it. With apologies to Douglas Adams.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:32 PM

I answered your question to my satisfaction, Greg, but not to yours. I see God as "That which is beyond us, and within us." I realize that's foggy, but it works fine for me. Sounds like you want a more definite answer, but I don't have that for you. You have to go to the absolutists if you want definite answers - and I don't want to go there. Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins and the born-again Christians and the Islamic fundamentalists have definite answers, if that's what you're looking for. If the answer were more definite, there wouldn't be room for the wide spectrum of perspectives among the various religious traditions. I think that to the extent we can allow for that wide spectrum, our world is much healthier, more peaceful, and more imaginative.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 05:38 PM

By the way, Joe, putting us alongside born-again Christians makes you sound just like Pleiades Pete. Hope you're happy with that!   😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 May 17 - 06:02 PM

You have to go to the absolutists if you want definite answers...the born-again Christians and the Islamic fundamentalists ...

Well, Joe, that's a pretty Trump-istic answer if ever I saw one. I'd expected better.

Thanks anyway.

G.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 06:23 PM

"Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins and the born-again Christians and the Islamic fundamentalists..."

Well I can't speak for the Islamic fundamentalists but the rest of that is twaddle. I won't associate with any atheistic type who says he has the answers or who expresses certainty or who sets out to "prove" anyone else wrong (as if that were possible). Atheists are people who don't know. Richard Dawkins has thrown his hands in the air a number of times saying that he doesn't know whether there's a God. He even said it in The God Delusion. People of faith always express THEIR certainties, on the other hand. You never say "Our Father, if you're really there, who may or may not be in heaven, if heaven exists at all, hallowed be thy name...", do you? Worse, you force children to chant those same certainties. Sorry to bring in my hobby horse, but regard it as a riposte to your accusation that it's us who have the "answers." It isn't. It's you lot!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 06:49 PM

Well, Steve, with the Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins cartel, it's an interesting phenomenon. They define what other people believe in very limited terms, and then proceed to attack and refute what they themselves have defined.

It's that compulsion to prove others wrong, that you and Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins and the fundamentalists have in common. Why do you put so much effort into trying to prove somebody else wrong? I get it with Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins - they've made a lot of fame and fortune that way.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 07:01 PM

Give over, Joe. You keep on saying "prove." All I ask for is your evidence. I am not in the least interested in proving anyone wrong and never have been. The trouble is, you get very defensive when challenged. Are you insecure? Personally, I feel very secure in the knowledge that I have no answers!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 May 17 - 07:07 PM

By the way, "cartel" isn't a good word here. The three of them endure mutual suspicion of each other, and I'm suspicious of all three. We atheistic types don't club together. We are fierce free thinkers. There are no ties that bind. No creed. No belief system. There is nothing there to take us into a cartel. Bum word. I'm glad we worry you. It shows in your posts, by the way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 17 - 09:59 PM

Sorry, Steve, we've been down that path before. It's very clear that Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins have made a lot of money attempting to refute and ridicule religious belief, and you have a history of showing support for them.
I don't care to get into a position of defending my religious practices. I don't find it constructive to go into defensive mode.
My interest in religion is as a spiritual practice, not as an ideology.
Bye-bye.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 19 May 17 - 01:34 AM

It's very easy to disprove Steve, Joe. Just come back with any quotes from Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins saying that they have all the answers. As you say this is what the 'cartel' do they must be easy to find.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 May 17 - 04:30 AM

Well Fry for one certainly hasn't made it his life's work to refute and ridicule religion. Your post implies that making money is their motive. You can't say that. Whatever you think of think of them, they express their ideas articulately, eloquently and challengingly. Mind you, I suppose that anyone who publishes a book hopes that he won't lose money on it. There wouldn't be many colourful Good News bibles printed if the enterprise didn't make money. Even religion and atheism can't entirely shun capitalist sm.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 May 17 - 04:37 AM

Capitalism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 19 May 17 - 05:37 AM

"Well Fry for one certainly hasn't made it his life's work to refute and ridicule religion."   :0)

He and his kind hate religion with a vengeance, their prime motivation is to bring down the Church in societies which are ruled chiefly by the Media and its brainwashed acolytes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 May 17 - 06:01 AM

Er..what do you mean by 'he and his kind..' ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 May 17 - 06:17 AM

Never ask akenaton "what he means." He never knows what he means and it's a waste of time asking him.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 19 May 17 - 07:28 AM

Hey A, the next time you feel a conspiratorial paranoia, swallow hard and ask yourself to what purpose?
Even Pense says whacky religious war words out loud but he has political manipulation reasons.

The current religious right lies involve gays and trans people dedicated to getting conservatives fired from their job with evil rumors. Amplified nonsense is just loud, not more true .


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 19 May 17 - 08:04 AM

Don, in the current election in Scotland four of the main party leaders are homosexuals.

Accusations of "homophobia" are already being used against our present SNP leader about something said by a Party member on twitter.

Accusations of racism, homophobia etc, when picked up by the Media are a strong political weapon.......We are rapidly approaching a deeply Orwellian society.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 19 May 17 - 08:45 AM

Your very mistaken about the nature of Stephen Fry. He is a good man and a great writer and artist.

I have read several of his books and seen many of his acting roles.

I profoundly disagree with you on this point Ake. I cannot imagine why you are saying such incorrect and observably wrong and cruel things.

i have always disliked the way you seem to be badmouthed by other mudcat members. please reassure me that they were wrong and you are a decent human being by disowning these abusive and totally untrue remarks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 19 May 17 - 09:57 AM

Joe: Thanks for the thorough and thoughtful reply to the question of intervention. I'm a tad busy at the moment and so struggling for time to reply, but this thread is giving me a lot to think about. Good stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 19 May 17 - 10:06 AM

I know you are a really decent guy Al....one of the best in my book, but I've got to say as I see.....I have listened to his opinions on plenty of interviews, and he's a tactician and activist first and foremost.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 19 May 17 - 12:43 PM

i doubt if that's on his income tax return.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 19 May 17 - 12:50 PM

I doubt if Akenaton can hold a reasoned opinion on Stephen Fry because of his utter revulsion of homosexuals.

Thus I treat anything he says about people of that nature with extreme suspicion.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 May 17 - 02:36 PM

I dunno, Al. I did a YouTube search for stephen fry bible and came up with lots of the same haughty ridicule that I hear from Hitchens and Dawkins and their ilk. And the problem with that, is that these three take a shallow, fundamentalist view of the Bible and religion, and then proceed to condemn ALL religious thought and tradition.

The Bible is a sacred, ancient document that is the product of a thousand years of written and oral tradition. Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins paint a cheap caricature of this ancient book and then subject it to ridicule. Certainly a document so ancient and so complex in its origins should be given more serious consideration. I believe the same respect and serious consideration is due to the sacred writings and traditions of all cultures. Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins write them off too quickly.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy - Torah Study
From: robomatic
Date: 19 May 17 - 03:37 PM

I go to Bible Study (Actually we call it Torah Study, but we also think that IS the Bible give or take Kings, Psalms, Prophets, etc. (The Tanach), and there's a lot of nastiness therein. Our heroes have feet of clay, wives of wandering feet. Lies get told, brothers get sold, Bad things happen to good people, good things happen to bad people (Never mind Job). And that capturing of human character, from best to worst cultivates my belief. I have no resonance with rosy colored glasses. The Torah captures a people in development in what we now call primitive times. stone age to bronze age. Yet their cares and motivations are ours. God offers a blessing AND a curse. We ignore the vital human message therein at our peril.

One can find the message in Gilgamesh, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Greek Myths, and many other earlier works of our common human history. I have only perused the Koran and found a lot of diatribe in it, but I can't be fair without spending a lot more time in it. The New Testament is a somewhat gladsome follow-on to Scripture, and spends too much time IMHO trying to establish the divinity of Jesus, which I do not accept, yet there are some great quotes in it, such as the one about putting away childish things upon adulthood, and the one about: "Be ye not conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind". That quote was included in a college math text about transforming equations and I love it!

I once succeeded in getting my girlfriend, a religious person, to freeze solid in the midst of a hug when I said: "If there is a God, He's got a lot to answer for." (And God DOES answer, after a fashion, in Job).

While I have us on the story of Job, I must recommend a movie called "The Revolt of Job" about a Jewish couple living in Hungary. They go to an orphanage and adopt a vigorous young boy who is NOT Jewish. The object being to have someone to leave their culture and property to. That orphan was the writer/director of the movie. It is not only a decent movie but the title captures the theme perfectly.

My overall thought is that to think things through REQUIRES blasphemy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 May 17 - 03:53 PM

The Bible is a collection of ancient documents, sacred to some people but not to others. That qualification is essential. There has been much discussion here of the serious flaws of the New Testament, basically a cherrypicked collection of "books," with lots of exclusions, put together tendentiously by advocates of Jesus and the new religion. Not to speak of the serious discrepancies between the four gospels that did actually make it through. The trouble is, Joe, you are trying to protect the Bible in the same way as you try to protect God. You want to take offence at challenges to sacredness (whatever that is). Ironically, that is precisely the attitude that seeded the blasphemy laws, which you profess to oppose, in the first place.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 19 May 17 - 03:56 PM

I believe the same respect and serious consideration is due to the sacred writings and traditions of all cultures. Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins write them off too quickly.

Well, I dunno, Joe - you certainly seem to write Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins/et.al. off pretty expeditiously with a good dose of haughty ridicule.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 19 May 17 - 05:53 PM

Upon reading Tolkien's "Silmarilion" for the first time I had the idea that if someone with no knowledge of either was confronted with that work and the bible, they would be hard pushed to tell which one billions of people followed as a religion.

Apropos of nothing in particular...

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 19 May 17 - 06:04 PM

And then there's L. Ron Hubbard........


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 19 May 17 - 08:13 PM

find it extremely amusin that eveything good that happens is attributed to some mystical but unproven (therefore non-existent) being yet everything evil is the result of human failing
If there is a god, he seems to be a bit of an arrogant self-absorbed prick
Of course there is evidence that God is an invention to provide a career for the ambitious
"Darwin was wrong. Man's STILL an ape!"
A point of accuracy - Darwin never suggested he ever was - he merely pointed out that they and we evolved from the same source.
Christianity has been kept alive by spiritual blackmail, promotion of ignorance, torture and mass murder - without that, it would have dissipated with all the other primitive beliefs.The church's response to science and knowledge had always been a violent one
It is up to those who believe in bogeu-man to prove their existence, otherwise, unless they make themselves visible they don't exist.
I think the high point of the "there is a god" argument has to be Ake's Stephen Fry must be wrong because he is such a bad entertainer (if that is not what he is arguing, why does it have any relevance here?)
Bonkers!!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: robomatic
Date: 19 May 17 - 11:01 PM

Jim:

"A point of accuracy" I'm smiling because your line there is precisely the same as I've said in discussions with so-called creationists. I tell them that Charles Darwin is MY "Saint Chuck".

Nevertheless it's a fine movie line if not so fine in absolute accuracy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 May 17 - 11:33 PM

I think that Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins are standard-bearers for an attitude that has overtaken the European Left, and to an extent also in the United States and other countries. The Left has purified itself and has espoused an anti-religious attitude that has also become increasingly cynical of the uneducated class, along with the working class and immigrants. As a result, the Left has betrayed and destroyed many of its traditional alliances. The result? Have you noticed the rise of right-wing "populism" in our world?

Here, for example, is a good example of what I'm talking about:
    find it extremely amusin that eveything good that happens is attributed to some mystical but unproven (therefore non-existent) being yet everything evil is the result of human failing
    If there is a god, he seems to be a bit of an arrogant self-absorbed prick
    Of course there is evidence that God is an invention to provide a career for the ambitious
    "Darwin was wrong. Man's STILL an ape!"
    A point of accuracy - Darwin never suggested he ever was - he merely pointed out that they and we evolved from the same source.
    Christianity has been kept alive by spiritual blackmail, promotion of ignorance, torture and mass murder - without that, it would have dissipated with all the other primitive beliefs.The church's response to science and knowledge had always been a violent one
    It is up to those who believe in bogeu-man to prove their existence, otherwise, unless they make themselves visible they don't exist.
    I think the high point of the "there is a god" argument has to be Ake's Stephen Fry must be wrong because he is such a bad entertainer (if that is not what he is arguing, why does it have any relevance here?)
    Bonkers!!!

Is there anyone who professes a religion who wouldn't be insulted by a statement like this? Is there anyone who professes a religion who would feel safe calling the writer an ally? Why is it that the writer thinks people would want to worship a God who isn't good? Why is it the writer hadn't heard that Ake professes to be an atheist?
Oh, and the Darwin quip displays the same annoying (and humorless) literalism so common among fundamentalists. Has the Left also taken on the monodimensionalism of the fundies?
Oh, and this: "Christianity has been kept alive by spiritual blackmail, promotion of ignorance, torture and mass murder." No doubt, there have been instances of all such things within Christianity; but they are hardly the usual conduct of Christians...and many "primitive" belief systems, not only Christianity, continue to exist because many people find value in them that has nothing to do with "spiritual blackmail, promotion of ignorance, torture and mass murder."

Once upon a time, when the Left espoused tolerance as an ideal, religious people felt they could ally themselves with the Left in opposition to oppression. The Left has betrayed and insulted that alliance, and many former allies have no idea where to go.

Too bad, that.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:02 AM

i don't feel insulted by JIm's post (on this occasion - his views on folk music are another matter).

why don't you have enough confidence in yourself and your belief Joe - to say - that's what this bloke earnestly believes - its not what i think, but he's totally entitled to have that point of view and express it?

thers nowt to get insulted about. that's what he thinks.

JIm is like that. He can't even see anything in Bob Dylan, why would he get religious belief? Its like some people never got to work the video.

its like some people look at Kandinsky and PIcasso. And they don't get it that this what clever people put their lives into, and as such its worthy of respect - even reverence. THey just don't get it. they just see daubs of paint, and what you take as insult is really only annoyance at their failure to comprehend.

Joe, try to value people for what they have to offer. not for what they honestly can't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:48 AM

Great stuff Joe, there's still fire in the blood! I was afraid the B's had put you so much on the defensive that you had forgotten how to punch your weight.
I could not agree more.


Al, these people have nothing to offer, they see Christianity as an impediment to their agenda......they have no positive message.
They are prepared to stamp all over decent folks who happen to live above the stones physically and mentally.

Although I am an atheist, I admire those who have the strength to hold a faith against the tide of sociopaths.

What the fuck happened to the much vaunted mantra of "diversity"?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:36 AM

The Left has purified itself and has espoused an anti-religious attitude that has also become increasingly cynical of the uneducated class, along with the working class and immigrants. As a result, the Left has betrayed and destroyed many of its traditional alliances. The result? Have you noticed the rise of right-wing "populism" in our world?

I agree with that, Joe, but it is not all "The Left", just a very substantial part of it.

Let me put in a rather long extract from the foreward to the 2017 Labour manifesto:


Britain needs to negotiate a Brexit deal that puts our economy and living standards first. That won't be achieved by empty slogans and posturing. We cannot put at risk our links with our largest trading partner. Instead we need a jobs-first Brexit that allows us to upgrade our economy for the 21st century.

Labour will invest in the cutting-edge jobs and industries of the future that can improve everybody's lives. Which is why this manifesto outlines a fully costed programme to upgrade our economy. From childcare to transport, housing to lifelong learning, Labour understands how a successful economy depends on services that support us all.

" FOR THE MANY NOT THE FEW "

So yes, this election is about what sort of country we want to be after Brexit. Is it one where the majority are held back by the sheer struggle of getting by? That isn't the Britain Labour is determined to create.

So let's build a fairer Britain where no one is held back. A country where everybody is able to get on in life, to have security at work and at home, to be decently paid for the work they do, and to live their lives with the dignity they deserve.

Let's build a country where we invest our wealth to give everyone the best chance. That means building the homes we need to rent and buy, keeping our communities safe with more police officers, giving our children's schools the funding they badly need, and restoring the NHS to its place as the envy of the world.

Don't let the Conservatives hold Britain back.

Let's build a Britain that works for the many, not the few.


I find that a good summary of what I see as the Left objectives. Childcare, housing, lifelong learning, decent pay for work, live their lives with the dignity they deserve and so on,

There is nothing whatever anti-religious in that. In fact if expressing your religion is part of your dignity, that is fully in line with the Labour party view.

Anti-religion is not a Leftist principle. Sure, there's 'opium of the people' stuff (But as Wiki points out the full quotation is "Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people". Often quoted only in part, the interpretation of the metaphor in its context has received much less attention. It the same with Nietzsche; his "God is dead" quote is in a context that is rarely considered).

The core Left principles are, to my mind, like espoused by the manifesto. Forcing religion in there, pro or anti, simply weakens the coherence of the left.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:44 AM

"Anti-religion is not a Leftist principle."

Very true "D", depending of course on what you mean by "leftist"

Anti-religion is certainly a "liberal" principle, if that's not a contradiction in terms.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:59 AM

As you say, Ake, it depends on what you mean by The Left. I mean the principles set out in that manifesto extract, including the repeated drum-beat in it that I omitted: for all, everyone, the many ...

Where I find Dawkins and co annoying is that they implicitly take that Marx quote that religion is "the heart of a heartless world" and then speak as if the solution is to get rid of the heart rather than make the world less heartless. Before anyone leaps in, they do say the science allows you appreciate nature in greater depth and so on. I don't disagree, but it is very much the background text not the foreground. My guess is that the average man on the Clapham Omnibus would describe Dawkins as anti-religious, rather than someone promoting a better alternative. But that is a guess.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:06 AM

"Although I am an atheist, I admire those who have the strength to hold a faith against the tide of sociopaths"
Jay-sus - questioning religion being a sociopath !!!
Many Millions of practicing Christians , particularly Catholics of every and no particular political shade are now questioning the message that has been brainwashed into the entire population down the centuries - the serial clerical abuse of children opened that particular can of worms here in Ireland, but elsewhere it seems that Idols have turned out to have clay feet as common sense and reasoning has begun to hit the fan.
Do you really need to turn every subject into a soapbox for your right-wing extremism?
What extremist planet do you inhabit?
Doesn't all this goose-stepping tire you out - give it a rest

This interesting and heartening letter to yesterday's (English) Times - presumably from a group of religious sociopaths
Religious discussion
Sir, We write because we are very disturbed that police investigated Stephen Fry's comments about God, in relation to blasphemy under the Defamation Act of 2009 (part 5, section 36). It has now been announced that there will be no charges, but we are still concerned that the act is being interpreted in such a way as even to lead police to investigate such comments ("One referendum at a time", News, May 10).
As clergy, we obviously take a different view from that of Mr Fry. However, his comments reflect a standard critique of theistic belief, which he has every right to make and to publicise. Every view — be it religious, philosophical, political, ethical or economic — must be open to questioning and criticism. And no law should protect any view from such healthy cross-examination.
We therefore urge the Irish government to consider whether the Defamation Act needs to be revisited to ensure that it does not stand in the way of robust discussion and debate.
THE REV DR MICHAEL LLOYD, principal, Wycliffe Hall;
THE REV DR JONATHAN ARNOLD, dean of divinity, Magdalen College;
THE REV CLARE HAYNS, chaplain, Christ Church;
THE REV CANON SUE HOPE, chaplain, Wycliffe Hall;
THE REV BRUCE KINSEY, chaplain, Balliol College;
THE REV DR ERICA LONGFELLOW, chaplain, New College;
plus a further four names at thetimes.co.uk/letters

Joe - You seem incapable of accepting that if a myth is peddled for so long, it is inevitable that people like Hitchens and Dawkins are going to examine it openly and in detail when the opportunity arises
Such examination can only be healthy
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:33 AM

Well, like I say, Jim, it's a good way to lose allies. You don't seem to realize that many religious people fully realize the shortcomings of their religious organizations, and work hard to resolve those problems. But despite the shortcomings, it's there that they feel at home.
You'd rather just beat them down.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:36 AM

"Anti-religion is certainly a "liberal" principle, if that's not a contradiction in terms."
Your gibberish use of the term liberal is a contradiction in terms
Why not just come out and say "humanitarianism" - that is what you appear to be referring to
Robo:
"Nevertheless it's a fine movie line if not so fine in absolute accuracy."
It is indeed and I didn't think you believed it for a second - though millions do - and use it as an argument against common sense.
I remember arguing with the Tunisian husband of a dear friend, who put the same argument - he was staggered when I told him that this was not what Darwin claimed
It was at that time I realised how less intransigent and how much more open to argument the Muslims I knew were than were (and are) Christians
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 20 May 17 - 05:02 AM

Jim, no-one here has defended Fry's prosecution, so why paste in that Times letter when those exact sentiments have been stated by all of us here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:15 AM

"You don't seem to realize that many religious people fully realize the shortcomings of their religious organizations, and work hard to resolve those problems."

But many don't, and I'd bet that the latter far outnumber the former. Big religions are institutionally authoritarian. There are strict membership rules and severe penalties for apostasy, either on earth, in the afterlife or both. There are many entirely arbitrary rules, mostly to do with matters sexual, religions' favourite subject, used to control the flock. Hundreds of millions of members of faiths do NOT question their religions at all. It's implied to them that you mustn't question what's divinely-constituted. Actually, if that wasn't the case you'd have no religions at all. You really can't justify religions' hegemony by claiming that an articulate minority dare question it. And the great implication of opposing heresy laws is that you're really saying to people of faith that neither you nor your chosen deity is immune from insult or ridicule. And that is exactly how it should be. Finally, you will not find Fry, Dawkins, Hitchens or me attacking or ridiculing people for holding irrational beliefs. You will find them attacking or ridiculing those people who choose to go large with their evidence-innocent beliefs, and you will find them arguing coherently and challengingly. Nothing shallow about them, and, far from being fundamentalist, they revel in and celebrate their uncertainties: Dawkins always insists that he doesn't know whether there's a God or not. That's why they worry you so much, admit it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:21 AM

I don't know Jim. The Muslims I've met and talked to (loads!) weren't at all 'open to argument' or 'less intransigent'. But that could be because I'm a woman, and not of their faith, and they are all African Sunnis.

In fact, one would hardly dare discuss any of these matters with most of them. Their whole mindset seems to me to be determined to hold fast to the long-held ideas adhered to by their forebears. Change or consideration of new, more scientific ideas just aren't on their agenda. Mind you, that applies in general to many Africans. They often resist new thoughts, or changes alien to their tradition/culture.

And Blasphemy is a very real crime for them. To say anything at all against God or the Prophet risks enormous consequences, as we all know.
But there again, the Christians I knew in Ghana for instance were very sensitive to any Blasphemy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:24 AM

Ha Steve! We think alike!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Joe Offer
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:45 AM

There are many of us Christians who think our views on politics and social justice are very much in line with the Left. But people like Fry/Dawkins/Hitchens make us feel very unwelcome.
So, where are we to go?

It hurts to feel ridiculed and excluded, and I don't see what we've done to deserve that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:28 AM

A very good point, Joe. I don't think it is a smart move by those on the Left if Christians in the US were persuaded to support Trump, or ones in the UK to support May because they feel they are attacked by others of the Left. It does no good saying "you will not find Fry, Dawkins, Hitchens or me attacking or ridiculing people for holding irrational beliefs" - it's totally beside the point if people *feel* attacked. Your intention is secondary; how they feel is what influences their actions. So the consequences of what you say may be unintended or accidental, but you still have the responsibility, even if that means a Trump or a May has a bigger success than they deserve.

And no, that is not pleading for religions to be immune from criticism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:40 AM

Love thy neighbour?


https://www.quora.com/Which-religion-is-responsible-for-the-greatest-number-of-deaths-of-infidels-over-its-entire-history


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:42 AM

"Jim, no-one here has defended Fry's prosecution,"
Who said they have - I certainly didn't
Not strictly true anyway - your mate Achy went in with both feet flailing and dragegd in irrelevancies like whether toyi lied him as a a performer
Keep up Keith
The Times letter is strictly relevant to the title of this discussion so please don't play your "thread drift" card this early in the game
You appear t be as lousy a poker player as you are a debater
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 20 May 17 - 08:55 AM

"I think that Fry/Hitchens/Dawkins are standard-bearers for an attitude that has overtaken the European Left"

I think that's massively overstating the role these men play in public life. The left has always attracted intellectuals and free thinkers and whilst Fry is perhaps a part of that in a gobby slab sort of a way, Hitchens was more his own man and Dawkins is apolitical and doesn't count. The real truth is the left always believes in the separation of church and state and still does; nothing's changed there.

The left in Europe is in floundering as it struggles with a workforce which has become de-unionised and voiceless with no central banner to rally around. Anyone who works for themselves in Europe knows fully well the uber-capitalist influence on the very way we work; the gig economy has made freelancing a total nightmare and the rightwards drift towards ever-increasing inequality is exacerbating this situation on many levels. The Tolpuddle Martyrs would be in despair.



"The Left has betrayed and insulted that alliance, and many former allies have no idea where to go."

If by allies you mean ordinary working folk, then you're right they have no idea where to go but the left hasn't betrayed the alliance at all, it's simply way too broad a church to come together as a single entity. The right, which lacks any firm intellectual basis and places it's faith in the snake-oil salesmen of modern economics can afford to fail to meet it's manifesto commitments and change policies at a whim. The left has a far harder task, making sure society is equitable, free and everyone is treated with compassion and can achieve their potential, things the right have never cared about.


"What the fuck happened to the much vaunted mantra of "diversity"?

Seriously, you of all the people on this forum are asking this question? You and your alt-right ilk pissed all over diversity, tolerance and compassion in your rush to follow demagogues and liars. You betrayed the heritage of radicalism and struggle towards social justice and equality that our ancestors fought and suffered for, not the other way around. But you've won, so be happy in the misery of others, especially the young. How you can bemoan the loss of diversity Ake is beyond me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:15 AM

i'm not sure you need strength either to have a faith or slough it off. its just what you are. wise man or fool. blue eyes or brown.

i find hallelujah type declarations of faith a bit embarrassing ...perhaps its cos i'm English. doesn't seem to bother Cliff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:22 AM

"Which-religion-is-responsible-for-the-greatest-number-of-deaths-of-infidels-over-its-entire-history"
Wouldn't it be more relevant to ask which religion has been responsible for the most deaths, irrespective of religion over its entire History Iains?
Christianity would be a front runner in those stakes hands down.
I can't think of another that comes near to their record
"whether toyi lied him as a a performer"
Don't know what happened there
Should read "whether they liked him as a performer"
I still find it astounding that someone who denies being a Christian and and claims to be a "socialist" should accuse those who criticise religion as being "sociopaths"
I should have thought anybody with those contradictory traits of character deserves to have his own personal "path" added to his name
It really is something else to claim that a church which has ignored and facilitated the physical and sexual abuse by clergymen using the authority their religion and Church has given them should be defended as a victim and protected from criticism
Crazy!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:39 AM

Christians in the US were persuaded to support Trump, or ones in the UK to support May because they feel they are attacked ...

Ah yes, the fabled and non-existant "War On Christianity".

Of course said "Christians" supporting Trump have no qualms about attacking the LGBT community, attacking the right of Women to make their own health decisions, attacking Muslims and Mexicans and Black folks, or for that matter voting for a candidate whose life-long behavior is entirely antithetical to "Christian" teachings.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:45 AM

The Muslims I've met and talked to (loads!) weren't at all 'open to argument' or 'less intransigent'.

I'm surprised to see this comment hasn't elicited hysterical screams of Islamophobia from the usual suspects, I wonder why.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 May 17 - 09:55 AM

Well, Joe, the adherence to evidence-free faith is irrational. There is no getting away from that and by saying it I'm not ridiculing anybody. Human beings wouldn't be human beings if they didn't have a piece of their brain that harboured irrationality. Sticking your country's flag on your car bumper or supporting your football team is irrational. Spending your time playing computer games or reading bonkbuster novels or relaxing by drinking alcohol is irrational. We must be allowed time and space to do these things. They make us human. Adherence to a faith belongs in the same category. But there is a yardstick: if you are harming yourself, that is a bad thing. If you are harming other people, that is a wicked thing. My dispute with you, and Dawkins et al's dispute with you, is that you don't appear to see the harm that's automatically done by the propagating of religion to other people. Our children are also entitled to their slice of irrationality, but we are not entitled to groom them from birth into sharing ours. I can take my lad to see Liverpool and tell him that they are the greatest team on earth (which happens to be true, of course), but that will not leave a permanent stain on his character. Religion has a very nasty habit of trapping children as early as possible then making it difficult or impossible for them to let go. That's the argument with religion. It's an argument you can't level at dads who take their boys to matches, or against belief in Santa or the tooth fairy. The faithful simply can't keep their religion to themselves, and they feel all offended when they get told off for it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 10:01 AM

Bad selection of what I wrote there, Greg. I said that it would not be a smart move If people felt that. It is a statement about how people feel, not whether there is a war or not, but whether people feel under attack.    A similar example is that lot of people in the UK are more fearful of crime even when all evidence is the specific crime they are afraid of is becoming less likely. Ditto vaccines and much else. There is a difference between how people feel and what the evidence shows.

I hate the term but it is the best around at the moment in common use: you need to criticise religions with emotional intelligence, not just intellectual intelligence. It does you no good if you alienate rather than persuade. In our electoral systems it only takes a few percent to swing things, so even if only a few percent are alienated that can alter the outcome.

There are certainly Christians who attack LBGT rights and the rest: they would probably support Trump anyway. But Joe and I were clear those were not the group of Christians we are talking about, but those who hold "left" views. They exist, believe it or not. And that is the group that alienating willl damage the Left. In the UK they are unlikely to switch to voting for May, but they could let in May if they switch to minority parties.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 20 May 17 - 10:54 AM

Jim,

The Times letter is strictly relevant to the title of this discussion so please don't play your "thread drift" card this early in the game


That was not my objection.
Those exact sentiments had already been expressed and accepted by everyone here, so why paste in others saying it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 20 May 17 - 11:16 AM

Jim:
Oxford english dictionary: Infidel

Origin

Late 15th century: from French infidèle or Latin infidelis, from in- 'not' + fidelis 'faithful' (from fides 'faith', related to fidere 'to trust'). The word originally denoted a person of a religion other than one's own, specifically a Muslim (to a Christian), a Christian (to a Muslim), or a Gentile (to a Jew).


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 20 May 17 - 11:22 AM

without screams of Islamophobia from the usual suspects, I wonder why.

Why? No prob.

Because its a reasonable, rational statement -especially if you finish reading the paragraph- as opposed to the bullshit you universally spew.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 11:58 AM

"That was not my objection.
Those exact sentiments had already been expressed and accepted by everyone here, so why paste in others saying it?"
Who the hell do you think you are to "object" to anything anybody posts Keith
You have no authority on this forum and you should think yourself lucky that you aren't kicked out on your arse for your persistent racist behaviour
You have ben warned dozens ot times over trying to interfere with peoples rights to post and your attempted manipulation of threads when they become uncomfortable for your narrow minded bigotry
I know your type find freedom of speech uncomfortable but stop it now - you not have to be warned yet again
"I'm surprised to see this comment hasn't elicited hysterical screams of Islamophobia from the usual suspects," your ranting massive postings of Islamic atrocities going back to biblical times, which you dredged from every extremist racist hate mag you could lay hands on has established you aas a long-standing Islamophobe, just as your prsitent blaming the Jewish people for the crimes of Israel has established you as an antisemite
There eyy isn;'t any need for hysterical screams, even if I had uttered them
I'm aware of the definition of Infidel Iains - I'm just pointing out where Christianity stands in theis particular Donkey Derby
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 20 May 17 - 12:21 PM

I was just going to say the same thing, Greg. You beat me to it!

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 20 May 17 - 01:11 PM

Stu....

Definitions... IRONY the use of words to convey a meaning that is the opposite of their literal meaning.

I only support "diversity" when it can be proved beneficial to society and certainly not in matters pertaining to sexual health.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:17 PM

Proof Mr Tickle exists!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:37 PM

Do you think God had a hand in that Joe? :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Acme
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:49 PM

And he's off . . . "matters of sexual health." Your euphemistic excuse for opposing LGBTQ rights and marriage. GIVE IT A REST. No one believes that's why you snarl thread after thread with your gay-bashing nonsense.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 20 May 17 - 02:51 PM

Jim,
Who the hell do you think you are to "object" to anything anybody posts Keith

We are all entitled to object to pointless posts in a serious discussion Jim.

You have ben warned dozens ot times over trying to interfere with peoples rights to post

I have not. Not even once Jim.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:10 PM

"We are all entitled to object to pointless posts in a serious discussion Jim."
No you are not Keith - if you find them pointless, walk away from them
I find virtually everything you post either pointless, facile, dishonest or stupid or unbelievably bigoted in the extreme
I have never at any time questioned your right to post
You make a habit of it whenever you find yourself in he klarts - which is often
You haven't even had the decency to respond to my explanation of why I believe what I wrote to relate directly to the point - which sums up your censorious attitude perfectly
You are a one-man Big Brother Keith
Never again attempt to question my right to post what I wish or you'll be up to your arse your "rapist implants" and "brainwashed Irish Children" and "slave-owning Travellers" and "peodophelic Prophets....." and "real Historians selling books in "real bookshops" and phantom witnesses you refuse to name, so deeply you'll think youve volunteered to swim the Channel
Mind your own ******* business, if you think my postings "pointless
How many times do you have too be told yiou have no authority here - very few of us even take you seriously, the number of times you've lied and distorted and humiliated yourself
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:33 PM

I disagree with Stephen Fry. If there is a great overarching force in the bright and dark universe that organizes data with an intelligence we may never understand it would not be a capricious, stupid mean minded maniac. It would be one from a perspective completely removed from our ego centric point of view.

Such a force would use time in billion year packets to accomplish certain creations or deletions that virtually knows itself better than we know ourselves. Or perhaps in a no time dimension that has a foreverness we can not fathom.

The intelligence of a near limitless universe would not deal with our petty squabbles in a time frame of a galactic nano second.

Its point of view would have no cultural attributes or egos as found on BS


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:44 PM

That is more or less what I think at present Don......of course, I reserve the right to change my mind as the nights draw in.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 03:59 PM

Do you know, Donuel and akenaton, I'm tending towards the same view!
I wonder if over the millennia, people have tried to envisage 'God' in human terms. The stern father figure, the loving, sacrificing Son, the vengeful Controller. And what if all the time, God was as Donuel describes, as sort of Universal Existence, way beyond our feeble comprehension, and not particularly involved in our tiny lives?

I remember an old vicar once said in an interesting sermon, "Don't try and put God in a matchbox and label Him!"

bobad, I do hope you don't find me Islamophobic or racist. I've been married for many years to a black Muslim and travelled all over W Africa. I'm quite talkative (have you noticed?!) and have had long conversations with all kinds of people over my long life. If there was one phrase that I hope would sum me up it is that I believe in the innate value of all human beings, whatever their race, religion or the colour of their underwear!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:08 PM

I've read a lot of poems over the years where I can't remember the poet or the name of the poem. But one had lines a bit like:

He was too big to be nailed to a cross,
But still they tried to confine him
Between the covers of a black book.


That is obviously a very Christian bit of symbolism, but I think the idea is wider than that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:15 PM

this is all getting a bit weird.

who gives a shit what Stephen Fry thinks anyway, or what he says?

let's all have a nice cup of tea and a biscuit, and forget it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:36 PM

Good idea Al. I have just had some chocolate biscuits so I will skip those, but a coffe is now at hand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 20 May 17 - 04:36 PM

Oooh! Can I have a nice cup of tea and a buttered crumpet please?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:34 PM

weird? Ya can't blaspheme a force vector that doesn't give a shit or even consider the consciousness of a rock 3 orbits from a star.

Senefou is right about the anthropomorphized god which has fallen from favor in our age.


Drakes equation is used to estimate intelligent life in our larger than average galaxy. Depending upon the input data there are millions of intelligent civilizations elsewhere or 0. Buddhism describes one lotus closing as another opens suggesting intelligence spread over time an space. There is no doubt this universe has an abundance of sugars, amino acids, carbon, organic matter, water and everything short of proteins, so far, to jump start life formation. Actual reasons for this may exist or not. It is easier to say 'it is what it is'.

A very small percent of the universe seems to interact with itself,
that's us! Maybe we are the tip of the iceberg that supports life. Maybe not.
85% of the dark realm holds the lion's share of interacting gravity but little else interacts there to our knowledge. Its as though most dark stuff acts like neutrinos.

There are forces and carriers of forces but again there is no proof of a god like an intelligent force or a smart dark side, just like in religion there is no evidence of God.
In psychology there is evidence of a plant chemical soup that causes different people to have the same dream with identical characters - but that may be too esoteric even for fans of the BS section... or maybe not.

We should ask Cornel West about God uses and abuses.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:40 PM

who gives a shit what Stephen Fry thinks anyway, or what he says?

More to the point, who gives a shit what Ake, Bobad, and the rest of the Islamophobic, intolerant, "Christian"[sic] Trumpolean ignorantist crew have to say??

Pass the tea, please, with a scone with just a tad of clotted cream.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 May 17 - 06:56 PM

calm down Greg!

Dip your Hobnob in, and speak ill of no man.

Go placidly through the shortbreads.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:05 PM

Al you must have read sweet Desert arada instead of Deserterada.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:15 PM

Bloody Nora, it's Friday night. Pass the Prosecco!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: bobad
Date: 20 May 17 - 07:22 PM

Poor old Greg's frying his circuits again tonight. Calm down old fella you'll have a stroke.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 May 17 - 08:06 PM

I sincerely hope that you put the cream on top of the jam on your scone, Greg. That's the Cornish way. Only infidels from Devon put the jam on top. If you can get whole milk that hasn't been homogenised, and you possess a slow cooker, you can make your own clotted cream better than any you can buy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 May 17 - 08:52 PM

Pleasant but I'm not sure I've ever gone for a cream tea in a great way. I'll stick to scoffing cheese scones when I get the chance. Shop bought ones can be disappointing but Pip/mum's ones are so moreish.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 May 17 - 08:56 PM

A cream tea in a Cornish garden on a warm summer's day is a thing of beauty. The scones, jam and cream must be accompanied by a proper pot of tea and cups and saucers, preferably with a floral pattern on them. The cream should be unlimited in quantity. And it goes on last.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: DMcG
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:02 AM

It was not, strictly speaking, unlimited but the last-but-one cream tea I had came with roughly twice the volume of clotted cream as that of the scones. I suspect the root cause was we had originally booked for five, then had to cut back to two, but no-one told the cream-provider

I also note that I went for coffee in this thread where everyone else went for tea. Out of step again, then.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:34 AM

Cream????!! CREAM????!!!! Did someone mention CREAM????!!!
Cancel those crumpets! I want creeeeeeeeammm!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:44 AM

You can do great things with cream according to Marlon Brando.... or maybe that was butter!!
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 03:59 AM

It was butter Jim, if I remember correctly. Waste of nice butter if you ask me!

500


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 04:38 AM

"Waste of nice butter if you ask me!"
Chacon a son gout Sen
"500"
Happy birthday
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 May 17 - 05:08 AM

"I suspect the root cause was we had originally booked for five, then had to cut back to two, but no-one told the cream-provider"

That's a damn good ploy is that. I'll be using it in future!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 21 May 17 - 05:38 AM

http://www.yoism.org/images/mushr.GIF

I wonder to what extent partaking of mind expanding drugs created early religions? Graham Hancock's book the Supernatural is a good intro.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sacred_Mushroom_and_the_Cross
John Allegro stirred up a storm around 1970 with his book.

http://blog.crazyaboutmushrooms.com/quetzalcoatl-mushrooms-mushrooms-mesoamerica/

Official religion offers tales of visions that are legal, get one from a magic mushroom and off to jail you go.
Ridiculous or what?


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 21 May 17 - 05:55 AM

"I only support "diversity" when it can be proved beneficial to society and certainly not in matters pertaining to sexual health."

Odd how you fixate on that. Actually, it isn't at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:13 AM

I do think, in 'Last Tango in Paris, they could just have used cheap margarine. (One of those ghastly 'spreadables' perhaps) And used the butter for a nice toasted post-coital crumpet. With Marmite.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:21 AM

If you find my statement odd Stu, then you yourself must be extremely odd. There is a huge epidemic going on within the MSM demographic, an epidemic which if transferred to the heterosexual demographic, would mean the collapse of society.

That you do not appear to care about this, or at best attempt to sweep it under the carpet, strikes me not as "odd" but as an acute case of ideological blindness.

You questioned my views on "diversity", I answered you honestly, my kind of society requires proof of the beneficial nature of proposed change......."better no deal, than a bad deal"


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:24 AM


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:25 AM

Adds a whole new dimension to the question "are you trying to butter me up?"

Margarine and low-fat spreads are completely banned from our house. If you don't like butter you're wrong.

I love the way we're sticking strictly to the topic, by the way. Low-fat spreads are sheer heresy, as is putting jam on top of the cream on your scone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:39 AM

Can someone tell another joke and prevent ache from turning this into one of his hate threads
The man/woman (probably hasn't been able to make up his/her mind), is an obsessive hate merchant
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:44 AM

Same in our house Steve. No semi-skimmed milk, revolting fat-free yoghurt or filthy non-buttery spreads. We buy Kerrygold Irish butter, full milk, pots and pots of double cream and Rachel's gorgeous creamy yoghurt. Not to mention lovely mature cheddar cheese.

I tell myself it's for my husband. 'He needs the calcium'. (Even if he's lived in UK for many decades and his bones are now solid and strong!)

I suppose the Thread Drift Police will be knocking on our respective doors soon, closely followed by the Anti-Cholesterol Brigade.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:47 AM

My sister tells me a...er...certain part of the anatomy has been called the Marmite Tunnel...
She's awful. Not pure and innocent like me...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:49 AM

I was responding to Stu's remarks in both my recent posts Jim.
The exchange was initiated by my questioning of the "liberal" attitude to "diversity" when applied to religious faith.

Now go back to sleep and stop making personal inferences about someone you have never met and know fuck all about.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:58 AM

I'm quite happy with the Flora or whatever (special offers can influence the choice of brand) we get but butter does appear once in a while. I think Pip prefers it if she has some baking in mind. Once in a while a pack of butter can wind up in more "general circulation", a recent example being a pack of Lurpack slightly salted. I think these days I'm probably more "it's a pleasant change" rather than anything more.

Of course there was a time when I felt differently. I think it was Stork years ago when 9/10 people supposedly could not taste the difference and I thought it was awful stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 07:12 AM

I make lovely sponge cakes and always use only butter for the fat component.
It also goes into mashed potato (with added cream), and I add cream to my home-made curry 'to thicken the sauce'.
I personally think that natural foods are far better for one than synthetic ones with chemicals added.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 21 May 17 - 07:32 AM

i used to love Stork, before they put it in tubs.

four slices of sunblest, two toasted.
covered in stork and a can of heinz beans.
then the other two bits of bread into sandwiches to mop up the juice and the beans that had fallen off the toast.
nice cup of tea!

by god! we knew how to live in them days...

and he we are drinking our chateau de chatillon....


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 21 May 17 - 07:38 AM

Amanita enlightenment is a poor substitute for Amazonia Psilocybe Cubensis.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 07:58 AM

""liberal" attitude to "diversity""
Perghaps you might make your point a little more succinctly if you discontinued your spitefully vicious, agenda-driven misuse of the term "liberal"
If you are going to refuse to enter into open debate, the least you can do (for your own benefit as well as the topics) is stop erecting protective barriers by calling names.
All levels of political thought have now long kicked the idea of capital punishment into touch - left, centre and right, religious agnostic and atheist..... so attempting to apply Anne Coulter's stupidly reactionary label to non-political subjects such as this is destructive and (from your point of view) self defeating.
I have little doubt that your behaviour is based in insecure protectionism so why not try logical argument instead - to are you still too busy to be arsed??
You've been given enough solid opinions to get your teeth into, in return, you offer nothing
"Diversity" has to be based on a sharing of opinions - you offer name-calling as a substite
"Marmite Tunnel..."
Always disliked Marite - you've just confirmed my dislike
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 May 17 - 08:03 AM

See! look what you have done now. Got ake all worked up with your talk. You know how he fixates about anal sex.

Joke time.

Went to the docs the other day and he gave me some suppositories. I took the full course but for all the good they did I may as well have shoved them up my arse.

Oh no. I may have set him off again...

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 08:20 AM

Well Jim, even you should understand that this issue has nothing to do with support or derision of an outdated law, and everything to do with a "liberal" agenda to destroy the church and its perceived socially conservative stance.

This agenda is advanced by people who laud the ideology of "diversity" in all things.....except, evidently the right to hold a religious faith.

As I tried to explain to Stu, diversity must be seen to be working positively before I give it unconditional support.
I cite the dangers inherent in Unregulated Immigration, Multiculturalism in place of full integration and promotion of minority sexual practices which result in huge health problems.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 08:31 AM

Regarding "open debate" no one on this forum can engage with you in debate while you continue to repeat abuse like Racist, Fascist, Homophobe. these words were designed specifically to stop and silence debate......they are a disgusting example of "liberal" double standards.
You mention "hatred", well nobody hates like a "liberal" scorned...or defeated in debate.
I offer this sector of Mudcat as incontrovertible evidence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Pete from seven stars link
Date: 21 May 17 - 08:44 AM

Certainly agree with that Ake . Though not universally applicable , there are certainly a few on here that resort to labelling , mocking or abusing posters that don't agree with their ideological position , should they dare to question it at all


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 May 17 - 09:09 AM

Little boy goes into the frozen food shop and says to the man "My mum says can I have a packet of Birdseye Pissoles please mister."

Man frowns, then smiles: "Ah, I know what you want, little boy, but try to remember that it's an r, not a p!"

"OK, mister, my mum says can I have a packet of Birdseye Arseholes please!"

Oh no...


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 May 17 - 09:36 AM

I offer this sector of Mudcat as incontrovertible evidence.

Oh, FFS you pretentious pillock. Have we learned a new word today? 'This section of Mudcat' is called BS for a reason and it is complete twaddle such as yours that supplies as much evidence as any self appointed judge, jury and executioner would ever need.

We have you pegged. Mind you, maybe that is what you you could do with...

What's the difference between anal and oral sex?

Oral sex makes your day. Anal makes your hole weak.

:D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:08 AM

I sometimes wonder about people like Dave, how do they co-ordinate their ideology to their words and actions.
Joe pointed the same thing out earlier regarding his views on religion.
He seems to feel a need to punish those who dare to contradict his world view and the lower he can stoop to do so the better.

Strange sort of animal to be sure.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:16 AM

Donuel.If you wish to travel further as a space cadet beyond the reach of Amazonia Psilocybe Cubensis I recommend the following if you can find them, but it may not fit your belief system. I am afraid I cannot identify the genus of the little mushrooms

"
Exodus 16:14 And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness there lay a small round thing, as small as the hoar frost on the ground.
19 And Moses said, Let no man leave of it till the morning.
20 Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto Moses; but some of them left of it until the morning, and it bred worms, and stank: and Moses was wroth with them.
21 And they gathered it every morning, every man according to his eating: and when the sun waxed hot, it melted.
23 And he said unto them, This is that which the LORD hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto the LORD: bake that which ye will bake to day, and seethe that ye will seethe; and that which remaineth over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.
24 And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses bade: and it did not stink, neither was there any worm therein.
31 And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna: and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey."

There is no mention of a subsequent trip away with the faerys after feasting upon them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:18 AM

"these words were designed specifically to stop and silence debate.."
No they weren't
They were designed to describe schools of thought and all are applicable to statements you have made
THey are not words I use lightly - you wear your homophobia like a tee shirt - you refer to homosexuals as disease carriers as if heterosexual sex, or smoking, or drinking or diving clapped out old cars didn't involve health risks - you target a lage section of the population who are naturally what they are and describe their life style as being, unnatural, voluntary and a risk to the rest of us - homophobic persecution to a tee and an attitude I hope to se made illegal in my life time, just as being homosexual has become legal.
Yor racism and Islamophobia are just as obvious - there aren't many member of this forum who have openly supported forcing refugees to wear edification which has drawn both abuse and actual assaults - you chose to sneer at those of us who found the practice offensive
Your fascism became open wen you threw your weight behind Trump and his li'l darlin', Anne Coulter who you first presented as a serious journalist, then back-pedalled madly in the face of links to some of her outrageously right-wing statements, claiming she wasn't serious - Klansman, David Duke summed her up perfectly as the nearest thing to his own politics.
If you don't want to rise up with fleas, don't go to bed with dogs.
I don't think I need repeat your advocating that we listen to what mass murderer Breivik had to say   
How dare you comlain about my summing you up as I believe you to be when you are happy to hurl your own sneery abuse, lately in the form of your deliberate misuse of "liberal" double standards" - I am neither liberal nor do I have double standards - I am a socialist who is prepared to hold up my analysis of the term (largely based on my life-long interest i the subject)
Your claimed socialism bears no resemblance to anything I have experienced, nor does it first any of the book definitions I have come across - National Socialism certainly, but that's apples and bananas as far as the established and accepted definition goes.   it appears to be as self defined as your "liberal"
You appear to be totally incapable of accepting what you dish out - you whine about being insulted yet are happy to insult and sneer at anybody who opposes your somewhat singular ideas - your adoration of Trump, your hatred of homosexuals - your use of the phrase "remoaners"   
Your own double standards take some beating - you call on the site overseers when a joke about taking out Trump is made, yet promote a vicious American broadcaster who advocates poisoning "Liberals"
THings might be different if you had the balls to back your outlandish beliefs with proper argument and evidence - when asked to, you say you are "too busy" - but your shortage of time doesn't seem to effect your hit-and-run hurling of toxic stink bombs.
This is a debating forum - so have the bottle to debate or stay away
As it stands, you are an unpleasant mixture of an anonymous cyber stalker and a troll
You can accuse me of many things, being wrong being the top of the list, but everybody knows who I am and where to find my work and I always link to the source of my opinions when asked - I would consider myself a coward if I didn't
My behaviour may be over the top on occasion but I never set out to be offensive and I am happy to apologise when it has been shown that I have
Clean up your act Ake - I've tried to clean up mine
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:45 AM

Senoufou, I'm sure I would love your cooking, a kitchen without copious amounts of fresh cream and butter are best avoided. Fresh bread, home baked of course and lots of salt.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:48 AM

look at it another way JIm

Ake doesn't believe in gay marriage.
Ake likes Donald Trump.
He wants to get out of the common market.

1. You never offered to marry him anyway.
2. Neither of you are in a position to vote for Mr.TRump.
3. A lot of people were pissed off with the common market, and got called all kinds of things. the whole discussion was marred by abuse.

just have a McVitiies chocolate digestive and forget it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 21 May 17 - 11:59 AM

Apologies Jim, the words were not specifically designed to silence debate, but they have neatly fallen into such usage in place of intelligent debate.

For example you say I am homophobic for branding homosexuals "disease carriers" I have never once in my many years of posting here used that term to describe homosexuals. To infer that I have done so is an outright lie, one to add to your other distortions of my views.   The facts on MSM and sexually transmitted diseases are printed by all the reputable health agencies and are almost identical for the US and UK If you disagree with those figures you should complain to PHE or CDC.
"Smoking, drinking and driving clapped out old cars" are not being promoted as safe and healthy, in fact all are being rapidly phased out or criminalised......you appear to support the promotion of what is evidently an extremely dangerous type of minority sexual behaviour.

Dont take my word for it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 12:00 PM

"Senoufou, I'm sure I would love your cooking,"
We'll all be around tonight - what time and shall we bring wine?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 01:06 PM

Oooooh how lovely! Please all come!

Menu:-

Chicken fillet pieces, mushrooms, onions, garlic, organic tomatoes, sultanas, NO Scotch bonnet chillis, (husband adds them later, they take one's head off!) salt and coarsely-ground pepper. All lightly sauted with Sharwood's curry powder, then cream added. Served with basmati rice.

Victoria sponge (jam and cream) OR buttered crumpets OR Scotch trifle (plenty of sherry in)

Hands off my bottle of Old Speckled Hen (bring yer own!)
Mango juice, lemonade and ice cubes (husband's tipple)
All instruments welcome, except bodhrans.
Don't trip over the Siamese cats!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 21 May 17 - 02:16 PM

Dont take my word for it.

No worries, Ake.

No one with even a pretension to intelligence would take your word for it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 May 17 - 02:31 PM

Aaaaaattiéké poisson! Aaaaaaagouti!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 May 17 - 02:40 PM

Hahaha Mrrzy! Mon epoux dit, "Moi j'adore APF!"

On ne trouve pas les agoutis dans le Norfolk UK!


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 21 May 17 - 02:57 PM

"All instruments welcome, except bodhrans."
Sounds like heaven
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Greg F.
Date: 21 May 17 - 06:57 PM

"All instruments welcome, except bodhrans."

And/or banjos.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 22 May 17 - 03:19 AM

"And/or banjos."
Go easy - what if she runs out of fuel for the stove?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 22 May 17 - 03:24 AM

Oi! I absolutely adore banjo music!
(Herd of Mudcatters rushing for the door and jumping into their cars, squashing swans as they roar out of the village in panic.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 22 May 17 - 03:50 AM

"Oi! I absolutely adore banjo music!"
Me too - but I prefer it from The Southern Mountains
They don't seem to have them around here in our nightly session - I think they are confiscated at the checkpoint
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 22 May 17 - 07:03 AM

I sometimes wonder about people like Dave, how do they co-ordinate their ideology to their words and actions.
Joe pointed the same thing out earlier regarding his views on religion.


I guess you must have a link to where that happened then, ake? If so, please provide it or we can safely assume that it is just another example of your nonsense.

Good luck with that.

D tG


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 22 May 17 - 08:04 AM

"There is a huge epidemic going on within the MSM demographic"

Excuse my ignorance, but what does "MSM" stand for?



"That you do not appear to care about this, or at best attempt to sweep it under the carpet"

Well, I care very much about people and don't care much for intolerance or ignorance. Don't assume to know my mind Ake, it betrays an arrogance and is rather condescending.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 22 May 17 - 09:01 AM

Just a general observation, but when a Certain Person keeps on and on about something, and brings it up at every opportunity, using the same old acronym and the same old vitriol, it's a bit similar to 'Methinks the lady doth protest too much'. One begins to wonder if actually, it's become an obsession for the simple reason they're fascinated and strangely attracted by the phenomenon, and are struggling with themselves about it.......


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 22 May 17 - 09:38 AM

Iains - sounds like a rotten rye mold -ergot! if indeed that is in the bile I mean bible. Emotional madness is no enlightenment, nor is magic* a faery fantasy. A proper use of magic* involves a central nexus of an unanswered question with an expectation of a symbolic answer appearing before your eyes. For example a floating triangle with a circle inside is lithium hydride LiH. The question was (a new power source?) back in 1990.

Bluing mushrooms if bruised is the first indication of an active enlightening psilocybin. There is a bluing bruised effect in some hibiscus but it is not psilo. Few foods raise IQ like magic *.

Writers of the all time best TV series like ^ ^ and ^ movies use magic *. Although you would be shocked by the truth there is no need to be reductionist with ,or jeopardize, friends.

My post last year recommended all religious leaders to be required to be enlightened.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 22 May 17 - 09:54 AM

"Excuse my ignorance, but what does "MSM" stand for?"
Apparently it stands for males who have sex with males -Ake's "thing", apparently (wasn't tehre a film called 'Jake's Thing'?
I think Sen's pint is probably answered by regarding Ake's obsession as an acute case of latent or closet homosexuality - insecurity about his own
I've never come across anybody who crusades in the manner he does
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Raggytash
Date: 22 May 17 - 10:11 AM

Senoufou, I too have questioned his obsession regarding homosexuality, I too think that perhaps he has a latent propensity towards it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Senoufou
Date: 22 May 17 - 10:26 AM

I always call this type of thing 'Mentionitis'.
It usually does indicate there is an obsession of some sort.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 22 May 17 - 11:00 AM

This is the only MSM I am aware of:
Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)

Scientific Name(s): Methylsulfonylmethane , DMSO2

Common Name(s): MSM

Uses
MSM is commonly used for osteoarthritis, but may also benefit in alleviating GI upset, musculoskeletal pain, and allergies; boosting the immune system; and fighting antimicrobial infection. Clinical trials are needed to verify these potential uses.

Fighting the Fight: Fibromyalgia Explained
SLIDESHOW
Fighting the Fight: Fibromyalgia Explained
Dosing
MSM commonly is given as 2 to 6 g/day in 2 to 3 divided doses for arthritis and other joint conditions.
Commonly used in the NFL
It is also a solvent.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: akenaton
Date: 22 May 17 - 11:40 AM

You people amaze me, how can you argue and debate when you have not a clue what you are debating about?
MSM is a registered demographic in all of the health agencies.
It stands for "Men who have sex with men", basically male homosexuals.
They make up 2% of the population, but account for 80% of all new HIV infections in men and 75% of all syphilis infections in men and women.
They are also over represented in all other STDs.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Jeri
Date: 22 May 17 - 11:46 AM

Senoufou wrote
"Just a general observation, but when a Certain Person keeps on and on about something, and brings it up at every opportunity, using the same old acronym and the same old vitriol, it's a bit similar to 'Methinks the lady doth protest too much'. One begins to wonder if actually, it's become an obsession for the simple reason they're fascinated and strangely attracted by the phenomenon, and are struggling with themselves about it......."
Yes, the "certain person" does it, then all the compulsives are helplesss to focus on the subject instead of the "certain person".

Ake, if you want to talk about guys having sex with guys, start a thread and see who takes the bait... again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Donuel
Date: 22 May 17 - 11:57 AM

I shouldn't have to say who is acting in a mean and provocative 1970's manner. Mudcat BS has less diversity than the early days but not making stupid accusations about stuff that doesn't matter applies to all. The new hateful Trump age is no excuse.

I've lost interest in Akenatun since he became a one sided coin and addicted to one source propaganda. Bridges are interesting, walls are boring.


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Iains
Date: 22 May 17 - 12:07 PM

Donuel:

http://www.academia.edu/1397021/Hallucinogens_and_Rock_Art_Altered_States_of_Consciousness_in_the_Palaeolithic_Period

and a bye the bye
http://www.dailygrail.com/Shamanism/2012/9/Taking-the-Pss-Did-Shamans-Really-Drink-Reindeer-Urine


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Subject: RE: BS: Stephen Fry Blasphemy
From: Stu
Date: 23 May 17 - 06:08 AM

I'm still giving lots of thought to Spinoza.


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Mudcat time: 27 May 3:26 PM EDT

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