Sunday, May 10, 2009

Saint Quelle Pray For Us

Saint Quelle, who was he? He was from Somewhere. Presumably he lived in the end part of the first century into the early years of the second century. Where did he live? Somewhere is in present day Turkey.

After doing a lot of amateur sleuthing about the last century of academic dissection of the four Gospels, one sees a lot of impressive deconstruction and primarily from the Jesus Seminar. I say deconstruction because it is easy to pull something apart but what is left of the whole of the Christian Myth.

A name that gets tossed around a lot is the retired Episcopalian Bishop John Shelby Sprong. He is quite eloquent and I do not take away from any of his or his fellow Jesus Seminar types but – but – they all salaried, vested and pensioned academics and use only documentation to talk their talk and walk their walk.

Besides, deconstruction of the Christian Myth leaves a great big hole, a void, a chasm that has not yet been filled in. When it is filled in, it will be paper mache and made only from the original few documents in Christianity that are there.

This academic dissection got started over a century ago with an analysis that stated of the first three similar synoptic gospels – Matthew and Luke did not copy everything from Mark. Some other document, a “quelle” (“source” in German) document must have once existed to be a source for the slight differences in quotes between the original Mark and the two follow up gospels of Matthew and Luke.

Rather than be a document, I have sometimes wondered if “Q” was not the same oral source. This does not much differ from oral history being written down and then used at a later time. But think of it. Let’s put a human being there in the seventh and eighth decade of the first century and still being a possible oral source – an original eyewitness. Interesting concept. I call him Saint Quelle. He was real. Just like Christianity itself.

What about the documents that are not there? Too many documents seemed to have disappeared in the early centuries of the Church or maybe they never existed to begin with – “Q” document included.

I am not saying that Jesus is not real. His message is clear to me. It is a simple message and stated amid the embellishments added to the New Testament over the decades and centuries after his ministry. While the academicians may have done a lovely job on the Gospels, they have yet to scrutinize the rest of the New Testament and namely Saint Paul.

I believe that there is a Paul Seminar going on at present. And it is brought to you by the same people who deconstructed Jesus in the Jesus Seminar - claiming by one estimate that only 18% of the sayings in the Gospels were actually uttered by Jesus.

I hope that the scholars they use this time are not merely Christian scholars who have studied Hebrew and Judaism. How many Rabbis have been invited to dissect Paul, the original yeshiva overachiever?

Having stated earlier that I thought that the Acts of the Apostles was an honest work, I look at it of late and see some basic flaws. I do not see specific flaws. The main thing I see is an all too convenient nature of the Acts as a bridge document to feed into and explain the players.

In Acts, Peter runs a Jim Jones type commune. Anybody who does not sell all their property because the world is going to end next week – and give all your money to the commune – well they get blown away like Ananias and Sapphira who cheated God and hedged their bet about the end of the world and the eternity things. Does this all happen in mere days or months after Jesus leaves town following his resurrection?

And, with Peter, is a major shadow player in the form of James, the “brother of Jesus”. Peter is or is not the second banana here depending on who tells you the story or who is in charge of the lecture.

Then you have Paul, the guy that always seems to be a dollar short and a day late in missing all the good stuff that just happened right under his very nose – lived in Jerusalem and never heard of Jesus etc. There is I think a problem with timelines here. Paul is an Apostle with an asterisk footnote.

Paul hears Jesus on the road to Damascus after Jesus is dead, resurrected and ascended into heaven until the second coming. Jesus makes one exception to his timeline to grab Paul’s attention when Paul and his posse got stopped short by a blinding light and Paul does a 180 degree turn and then embraces Christianity instead of trying to destroy it.

Then Paul and Peter and James kiss and make up and agree that circumcision is okay for gentile believers of Jesus as the Messiah – but only outside Jerusalem, James and Peter’s turf. Whatever.

The rest of Acts has Paul being beaten and arrested and surviving one shipwreck after another. You can almost hear the 007 electric guitar music playing as he rides out the super hero role into a question mark. Acts does not really say what happens to either Peter or Paul. You are supposed to guess your happy ending to that spec script.

Acts in real terms to me is like a bridge document or a Star Wars 1, 2, 3 to make sense of the original starting films 4,5,6 which got produced first like the Epistles or the Gospels. Acts if it is a bridge document, it was written to pull all the rest of accepted scripture into a makes sense timeline.

Just waiting for the shoe to drop from the Paul Seminar is so nerve racking. What will the academics accept and who or what in the script will get black balled?

Looking ahead with my own deconstruction and reconstruction, I see a few things that will cushion me against the Paul Seminar throwing the baby out with the bath water again.

A sort of partial deconstruction and reconstruction happened in the Reformation. The protestants threw out the Pagan Roman traditions of the RC church. The Prots based Christianity on the written word. That was a primitive reconstruction of sorts. It perhaps sets the stage for the future of Christianity after another future wave of literal deconstruction and reconstruction of scripture.

And then there is always the possibility that a set of Christian style bunch of Dead Sea Scrolls or Nag Hammadi type documents will get discovered in the future.

As such I am following my own previous stated positions. I break the whole Jesus Christ myth into historic timeline myths labeled The Jesus Myth and The Christ Myth. Do not be afraid of the word myth. I use it in place of the word story as in traditional and or legendary story.

The first is The Jesus Myth which is the basic Jesus product that grew up out of oral and written things – a model T Ford automobile - that includes the gospels if in fact they were finalized before the second stage or The Christ Myth.

The Christ Myth is the merger into Greek and Latin and with heavy weight pagan beliefs and the basic son of Zeus thing – a 1959 Cadillac with fins.

Any way you slice Christianity, it as a core of words or beliefs, has a lot going for it and namely its ability to morph from millennium to millennium and suit new secular needs. Right now the faith is a little bit in the doldrums and waiting for the winds of some more change to take it to the future – on wings as of an eagle.

Saint Quelle pray for us – and especially the Paul Seminar!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Pius XII and Yad Vashem

There is a minor brouhaha with Joe the Pope’s upcoming visit to Israel. Joe is going to lay a wreath at the Holocaust Museum - Yad Vashem - Martyrs' Remembrance site. Joe is not going to visit the exhibition center – no time on the schedule. And while Joe did at some point wear the unifrom of the Wermarcht he wears a totally different uniform now.

There is a plaque among the exhibits that basically trashes Pope Pius XII for his not renouncing Hitler and you know the rest.

I have not been able to find words in print but have taken words off of photos of the exhibit which may at present be worded differently but this is what I have seen:
While the ovens were fed by day and by night
The most Holy Father who dwells in Rome
Did not leave his palace, with crucifix high,
To witness one day of Pogrom...


…When Jews were deported from Rome to Auschwitz, the Pope did not intervene. The Pope retained his neutral position throughout the war…His silence and absence of guidelines obliged Churchmen throughout Europe to decide on their own how to react.
The above photo is not unlike the holy cards of my childhood whereby the Pope was of a distant and mythical character. The Pope never left the Vatican once elected and stayed there until he died. Vatican II saw John XXIII walking around and visiting the city of Rome and even talking to gardeners in the Papal gardens.

Pius XII is of the old world and the new world. The ugly world of the Third Reich was quite visible to this pontiff in many ways. In many ways he had been elected because he had been the Papal ambassador to Germany in the twenties and because he had experience with and contacts with the Nazi Regime.

Never forget that the Pope is both a spiritual leader and a politician with most times the equivalency of an accounting degree. What was in Pius XII‘s heart regarding the Holocaust? We will never know short of Judgment Day.

Who is to say that Pius XII and his passive actions towards the Nazis did not save more Jews than if he openly opposed them. So too perhaps neutrality was a truth in that Vatican Passports saved Jews before and during the war just as those same passports whisked Nazis to South America after the war.

What I find offensive is not the exhibit itself but where are the photos of all the Jewish leaders before and during the war that had told their peers and subordinates that this was just another Pogrom – that it would pass - stay in place and do not flee. In hindsight, how would all these Jewish leaders and Pius XII know that the storm of the century – a perfect storm - of hate - and the Holocaust were about to happen?

I support Benedict XVI and his action to diplomatically ignore this offensive exhibit at Yad Vashem. The Martyrs deserve better remembrance and wiser insight of that era.

Friday, May 8, 2009

National Prayer Observed - Everyday

Of course everyday is a good day to pray.

Yesterday the White House endorsed a National Day of Prayer with less fanfare and less political pomp as in recent years.

No one group can own nor can any one philosophical approach to the concept of God be monopolized especially in this diverse nation.

Prayer Day receives ecumenical treatment
…Obama opted yesterday for a private observance and a decidedly ecumenical proclamation. The proclamation cites the "one law that binds all great religions together: the Golden Rule and its call to love one another, to understand one another, and to treat with dignity and respect those with whom we share a brief moment on this Earth."

Praising the armed forces, he says "it is because of them that we continue to live in a nation where people of all faiths can worship or not worship according to the dictates of their conscience."

Shirley Dobson, chairwoman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, said it was "disappointed in the lack of participation by the Obama administration" in the 58th annual observance. "At this time in our country's history, we would hope our president would recognize more fully the importance of prayer," she said in a statement.

But other religious groups praised Obama for dialing back the observance and accused the task force of trying to exclude non-Christians. Dobson is the wife of James Dobson of Focus on the Family, a politically active Christian conservative group…

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Papal Circus on the Road Again

The Pope and his entourage of 2,000 “journalists” are on the road again, making a royal progress through the Middle East. Party!

An Excellent article by Jeffrey Fleishman in the Los Angeles Times.

Jordan first stop on papal Holy Land visit

Edward Eid is a Catholic and general director of Greek Orthodox schools in Jordan. Such a role might seem contradictory for him, but in Jordan, where Christians account for less than 4% of a population of about 6 million, interdenominational mingling is a way of life. Eid has a VIP ticket to the pope's Sunday Mass, but he's not going, feeling a closer allegiance to his Muslim countrymen than to the Holy See.

"We Christians paid the price for what the pope said in 2006," he said. "Before he says anything about the Middle East, he should know how Christians live here."

The Christian population has been shrinking through economic emigration and over the rise of Islamic conservatism. For every church that is built, one mosque, or possibly two, pops up in the same neighborhood. After the pope's comments three years ago, he said, 15 Muslim families threatened to remove their children from Eid's schools; rancor and bruised feelings spread between the Christian village where he grew up and the neighboring Muslim town. Tribes, customs and family connections fixed things, but there remains an air of unease.

"The pope's a smart fellow and I was astonished. His comments were like a bullet out of a gun. You can't take them back. Even the Orthodox Church told me, 'Leave us out of the pope's visit,' " Eid said. "But I'm using the visit for the benefit of Jordan. The pope travels with something like 2,000 journalists. Jordan will be shown all over the world."

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Are you a Poshiter Yid?

I hope I am not offending anybody. Ran into the above bumper sticker on the way to the Staten Island Ferry on a car with Illinois plates. I thought it was something anti-semitic. Instead it refers to some Yiddish pop Music banned by some orthodox rabbis in Chicago. I hear that the bumper sticker is a way of using non-verbal negatives to the rabbis who have banned the music. (Poshiter Yid = a simple Jew)

Below is a clip of I think by the same artist. I did not know Yiddish was still spoken. I remember it from my youth when my father would go and haggle with some Jewish merchants for the best bargain in town for school clothes etc. My father did not speak Yiddish but he may have known a few words to strike up the conversation or finish up the deal.

The artist's name is Lipa Schmeltzer.

A Poshiter Yid

This Review is Banned!

How Goes Maine So Goes The Nation ?

The political saying above was about Presidential Elections that saw the State of Maine voting for the winner 90% of the time in the past century. Maine in the past seemed to be right in the middle but on the fine winning edge of how to judge the mood and course of the nation.

Gay marriage has come to Maine. There is obviously something going on out there in the world. Being the flaming liberal that I am, I believe in equal rights and opportunities for everyone. The liberal in me is also still a little bit homophobic. That is what I was taught in the American Culture that I grew up in. The American Culture I will die in someday in the future will have Gay Marriage almost everywhere. Theory is one thing. The facts staring at you in the face is quite a different thing. It will take some getting used to (for me at least).

I have known and socialized with Gay people in the past. Having lived on and off in NYC for close to a quarter century, it is impossible not to know any gay people. Live and let live has always been the common attitude for the most part. Hate crimes can happen just as easily here in NYC as they do in Wyoming. Social mores can change. Human nature remains the same.

This is where the paradigm shift happens in our Global Culture. This is where there are no real roadmaps. What was described in the Bible as a no-no is now getting mainstream secular attention. Without a Constitutional amendment supporting rights to gay marriage I would guesstimate this status will be a permanent civil function of a dozen to half the fifty states in the next decade. Once the novelty, fear and bias wears off, perhaps all or almost all states will recognize this as a legal status.

Isn’t it odd how so much of what the common culture now wants comes from the culture itself and not from tradition and not from sacred texts anymore? The secular state has arrived even with all the right wing evangelists screaming and kicking and spouting ancient words every step of the way.

What I first thought of as a Global Town Square and as perhaps a variation of the old concept of the “global village” is nothing quite as I imagined it to be – today.

We all not in a physical town square anymore. We are in a virtual town square and it is the same in Iowa as it is in New York City. We cling to our homes, our worlds and we wrap ourselves in a bubble with cell phones, iPods, earphones, laptops and centered around the virtual Yellow Pages, Webster’s Dictionary and Sears Catalogue of the new age – the Internet. We reinforce our own view of the world instead of the other way around as it has been for centuries.

My need to be spiritual depends on me. I do not trust the moral authority of the Christian or Catholic Church that I have seen reshape itself into its own financial and survival mode self interests and at the expense I think of the people who once sat in the pews of churches. Even the intimacy of being in a small church or chapel to pray or meditate is dwarfed by Mega churches designed more for rock concerts than spirituality that I feel comfortable with.

Part of my reason for writing this blog has been to keep an ongoing interest and observation of the day to day lives of people in the domestic end of my street and all the way to the national culture generated from Hollywood, NYC or Wash. D.C.. The view I see today is a remarkable but twisted view through a prism.

What I see through that prism I sometimes do not grasp easily or understand but stand by in cautious curiosity and feel that no matter what I see or feel does not matter much. The world and the culture is evolving all around us. I only hope that the end results or the discernible results down the road somehow match what is now, has been and will hopefully remain a human culture.

The future has arrived! (and we all remain pilgrims in search of something)

Senator Bob Casey at King's College - May 17

While surfing the net for other things, I ran into one of those connect the dots things of things related or seemingly related or of having no relation at all. Am I making sense?

Not to harp much further on Bishop Martino of Scranton. He has been ragging on Senator Casey of Pennsylvania who is scheduled to speak at King's College in Wilkes Barre on May 17. Casey is pro-life but his voting record is many times pro-choice and not satisfactory to Vatican standards of what a good Catholic should say, do or think.

May 17 is the same day that good Catholics want to lynch Obama for giving a commencement speech at Notre Dame. Is May 17 some sort of Catholic Holy Day?

Back to Casey and King's College, if you cannot get a better moral man than Casey why not have a famous alumni of the same college speak.

I hear that Judge Mark Ciavarella might be available to replace Casey as a speaker.

Of course Judge Ciavarella is a “white collar” criminal who got caught cheating on his income taxes along with that other Judge Michael Conahan.

This is where connecting dots really gets a little interesting. In doing some research on Bishop Martino, his posted pastoral letters and his quotes on the Catholic Blogosphere posing as journalism, I do not see one condemnation of the this man Judge Mark Ciavarella by this very loud, very angry, very “moral” Bishop Joseph Martino of Scranton.

I know that Judge Ciavarella’s white collar crime happened over the county line in Lucerne County but it is still Martino’s religious bailiwick. And Wilkes Barre is a whole sixteen miles from Scranton. This is where I think of all those Germans after WWII who said that did not know about Auschwitz that was just down the road and they did not know what was going on at that facility of historic horrors.

I know that the moral leader of the Catholic Church in the Scranton Diocese did not know about the crimes against humanity of children being put in private “for profit” juvenile jails so that Judge Ciavarella and Judge Conahan could get bribes to fill up these “for profit” prisons.

I feel sad that the best way the Bush “Justice” department could deal with these monsters in judge’s robes who in essence trafficked in children - was to only let them get off with a mere seven years plea bargained sentence and on the white collar crime of tax fraud.

America’s total moral abandonment during these recent years is something everybody should recognize, pray about, ask forgiveness for, and turn over a new leaf to the country’s hopefully better moral future.

You speak in the public square Bishop Martino screaming your moral righteousness about Bob Casey or are obsessed about sex on Catholic Campuses or the general state of morality, and you will do everything in your power to strike down Roe vs. Wade.

I know that you have not addressed one of the most recent heinous crimes against humanity carried out within your moral jurisdiction and now I understand why you shout so loud on other matters. You shout to not hear the cries of the children whose lives where ruined by these judges, one of whom I know is the Product of the Diocese of Scranton’s Catholic grade school, high school and college education system.

You cannot condemn the whole system for the failure of a few. But being whole moral on some issues and then being half moral or morally absent on other issues makes for a very lukewarm morality. Last dot is connected.

You’re right Bishop Martino. Bob Casey is not good enough to speak at King’s College. He is perhaps too good.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Thank you Bishop Martino for supporting our grandchildren.

Four Catholic Colleges Ban Birth Control On Campus

Four Catholic institutions of higher learning in Pennsylvania have decided not to make contraceptive devices like condoms or oral birth control available on campus, as per the suggestion of Bishop Joseph Martino. The schools agree with Bishop Martino’s stance that providing such items on campus go against Catholic doctrine.
Contractually, and under most federal guaranteed student loans, if you pay for full services at any university, and for your child under 21 and he or she conceives in that university, the university should be obligated to support the children conceived, unaborted and delivered at that pro-life university – especially if birth control is forbidden at the so-called full service facility.

That's my spin on the law or how it should be - that or pull the plug on federal monies to support these institutions. It's one thing to provide funds for education. It is an entirely other thing for these funds be misused to interfere in the private sex lives of students. If you interfere in the conception process - "if you break it you buy it".

Bishop Joe Martino of Scranton in the goodness of his heart and the immence wealth of the Roman Catholic Church should take full responsible for part of the child’s support until age 21 of all children conceived on church property and especially when the University forbids birth control on the premises. Partial responsibility starts with taking away the kid's candy - the rubbers and the pills. Any responsibility in the process of life implies reponsibility for continued responsibility of moral and financial support.

Thank you Joe – you are a pearl among men and with the assets of the Vatican, the sky is the limit with our children who attend upstate Pennsylvania Catholic colleges – namely Marywood, Kings, U of Scranton, Misericordia but who have the sense to have children born out of wedlock through your papal command – thx for the co-child support through 21 = you are a life saver !

This co-sponsorship of unwanted pregnancies and child support (or at least lawsuits from unplanned grandparents) kicks church morality up another notch and into a brave bold, unknown frontier.

Thank you Joe! You are a saint! Amen!!!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Prayer! What an Original Idea Bishop Wenski.

There is the bishop of Orlando (second from left - photo above - under right hand of Jesus) who is doing a Mass of Reparation to repent for the mortal sins against God – presumably regarding abortions by women and condom use by men – and in relation to President Obama’s arrogant uppity personal view of life and Christianity.

Notre Dame's Obama invite riles Catholic bishops
This coming week, Bishop Thomas Wenski of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orlando, Fla., will take the unusual step of celebrating a Mass of Reparation, to make amends for sins against God. The motivation: to provide an outlet for Catholics upset with what Wenski calls the University of Notre Dame's "clueless" decision to invite President Barack Obama to speak at its commencement and receive an honorary doctorate May 17.
This is a good thing. Prayer. How Original! “A Mass of Reparation, to make amends for sins against God” for mortal sins like abortions by women and condom use by men.

Sounds good from a PR stand point. Any American Bishop can sign on to the “me too” Radio Talk-Show Litmus Loyalty Test against Obama at Notre Dame. Why not try prayer to set your house in order - Bishop Wenski and the other “me too” American bishops following the same tired party line and protest about Notre Dame’s choice.

Notre Dame as a world class institution has the right to bestow a minor honor on this man. This man has done more in a short time for American greatness, for American healing in a symbolic manner greater than half a dozen Vatican Councils.

From the same Article Above:
"I think the bishops who believe abortion is the ultimate litmus test look at the polls and realize Catholics are not listening to them," said the Rev. Mark Massa, co-director of the Curran Center for American Catholic Studies at Fordham University. "They're playing a very dangerous game because they do not have the moral authority they had before the sex abuse crisis, and they're trying to find a toehold and get heard."
How many Masses of Reparation have been said by the these same “me too” bishops for the sins of the clergy against the innocent Bishop Wenski? Dozens? Hundreds? Thousands? Tell me!

Or does morality on that issue straddle a thin blurred line? Perhaps the clergy abuse thing is considered a secular matter because it deals, has dealt, with lawyers, lawsuits, civil and not church laws.

Perhaps the true moral authority of some American bishops can be ascertained after May 17 with this “moral” line in the sand tempest in a moral teapot thing about Obama at Notre Dame - by seeing who is on or off this loyal “me too” bishops' self righteous petition being passed around at present.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Cultural Christian Sensibility

I see in the New York Times an article about how atheists and agnostics are networking via E-mail and the Internet to feel more comfortable and defend themselves against the aggressive religious types who like to have a monopoly on the concept of God – and who like to harass anybody outside the local God Club. This, in what some are now calling post-Christian America.

More Atheists Shout It From the Rooftops

My choosing the “Cultural Christian” label was to have something. I am not an atheist, not quite an agnostic and am perhaps Christian, whatever that truly is, in my heart. I do not like religion and or religions and this is based on their dismal past performance.

Part of the social contract of humanity since the beginning of time is the “yeah okay” response to shamans, wish craft, superstitions and the bully chief in charge of the tribe.

In exchange for “yeah okay” you get to stay on this side of the fence or stay inside the cave – and are protected from the great unknown of “them” whoever and whatever “them” is – fear (?) – and or the forces of nature.

Over the centuries, God and or Religion got stuck in the social fabric thing as an entitlement for some and as a permanent tool of the state. Why?

Messengers of God! Messengers of messengers of God keep trying to polish the message from God if there is a true message or a true God.

Even Mohammed had to renegotiate the prayer thing with a supposedly perfect God through the middleman messenger of Gabriel. The number of times required per day for prayers to God got cut down from fifty times a day to five. Is that a bargain or what?

That prayer five times a day seems an awful lot to pray to a deity that is in all likelihood not listening. That the deity perhaps has better things to do and is perhaps distracted with another dinosaur experiment on another planet in another galaxy at the moment? Whatever.

The message of Jesus is in the Sermon on the Mount – and to love one’s neighbor and to love one’s self in balance and in concert with others. Life is or should be a group effort thing.

The Golden Rule by any other name is still the Golden Rule.

That Jesus if he had succeeded in his social revolution, he may have been forgotten in time like Simon Bar Kochba.

As such and in my local corner of the western hemisphere I look at and measure all things through an ancient Christian prism as well as modern secular bifocal lenses. (Always read the fine print!)

As the earth’s common culture continues to shrink into a singular global stage, I pray. I pray because I think it a useful and right thing to do. It is part of my makeup and upbringing. I pray for myself and I pray for the overthrow of any kind of “tyranny over the mind of man”.

Organized religion seems to be obsolete in western culture. Schools, hospitals and government are mostly secular and here in the USA the separation of church and state has been the cornerstone law of this land for over two centuries.

It is not that God is dead in so much as ancient myths and logics are misunderstood and or incompatible with this modern age. In any case – God is God; man is religion.

I pray that all of Islam wakes up one day soon. I pray that it is able to think independently of the state and the evil fascist rulers controlling the local mosque. That awakening will be Islam’s Reformation and gift to the world.

The harder the extremists of Islam and Christianity fight for a place at the table of a fascist rulers’ feast – the greater the awakening to moderates who do not want to be told what God wants.

Who knows what God wants ? Only madmen!

The secular sunshine of tomorrow will shine on all cultures on all continents.

Other than that, my Cultural Christian Sensibility knows that in fifty years time – all of humanity will look at all things including God and religion as either “B.D” or “A.D.” – either “Before Darwin” or “After Darwin”.

God and religion will not totally disappear but man and man’s grasp of science will be accepted as the newest and latest revelation or message of Creation.

Humankind is both the messenger and the message. Man is the arbitrator of life itself, the quality of life and the goal of life. Man is the primary key for the survival of the species.

A true close and or distant God might agree with the thought that “Man is (and should be) the measure of all things” on earth.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I Hope You Dance


In the interest to myself to not take myself too seriously in some of these odious blog topics - a lighter note - a secular hymn if you will - and a moment to reflect on the weekend "sabbath".

I hope you dance.



Friday, April 24, 2009

The Bush Cheney Inquisition

One mans’s torture is another man’s pleasure???

There is a lot of vetting going on now in the media and the Congress about that torture thingy. Sean Hannity of FOX News has volunteered to be water boarded for charity to show that the near drowning experience is not torture but a frat house prank kind of thing. Keith Olbermann of MSNBC has offered $1,000 a second for every second that Sean does this easy frat house thing for charity. Poor Keith is going to spend a fortune on Sean who will proving that he is no pussy. Good fun for TV, the media circus and ratings.

Water boarding as torture goes back to the Spanish Inquisition which came into place over five centuries ago to weed out heretics but in reality it was a ethnic cleansing tool to get rid of Jews and Muslims from Spain who had been in Spain for centuries.

If you cannot get a modern day picture in your head about this Inquisition or torture thing I suggest the movie “Goya’s Ghosts” which shows torture and the Inquisition of about two centuries ago. Yes heretics were still being rounded up and tortured up to 1834 in Catholic Spain. Natalie Portman’s character in the movie gets caught up in Church politics and torture just because of her not liking a particular dish in a restaurant. No more plot give away here. See the movie. Splendid period piece against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars in Spain (Global Politics circa 1800 AD).

Goya's Ghosts

Getting back to people like Condelezza Rice, selling her soul to get ahead in life but as National Security Advisor signing off on torture before attorney Jay Bybee had even pulled out his crayons at DOJ to write his legal opinion on the subject to give legal credence to - well it’s a long story.

As I said earlier, if men and women of good conscience were trying to defend this county in an emergency situation they, the former regime and its defenders, would not be acting like such inbred idiots and a bunch of tossers about this current tempest in a teapot?

If we are a nation of laws, a so-called “Christian country”, we can live without torture as a modus operandi of our mantra and national identity.

Throughout this so called debate going on now about torture picture this – George Washington did not need torture to win the Revolution.

Bush and Cheney, two natural born bullies, did need torture to justify the illegal invasion of Iraq for fun and profit.

See the movie Goya’s Ghosts. Get some perspective on this current topic.

Be well – and don’t be tortured.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Twitter to God

Our Father, which art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done,
in earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our dail

(Commentary: Oh the modern age - how like the proverbial glass - is it half empty or half full?)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dick Cheney Go Home

Lately, Dick Cheney is all over the place – hyperactive – and perhaps in fear that the truth if we discover it about the Bush Cheney years will set us free. Alleluia!

If you acted in good conscience in the defense of the nation, nobody will fault you up to a certain point. Beyond that point, I doubt international indictments regarding War Crimes will touch you unless you go to nasty places like France.

Dear Dick, you seem lately more like Pontius Pilate’s gatekeeper Cartaphilus who gave that social malcontent Jesus a shove and Jesus in term damned him to walk the earth until the second coming. The only second coming you seem to be praying for is a second big terrorist attack on the domestic US scene. In which case you will no doubt feel absolved from your personal hand in Abu Grhaib and Gitmo and justified in your extreme defense of Liberty which would seem to be no vice to you.

I suggest you get Fox News to give you official Pundit status if you are in fact competing with Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich and Michael Steele to be head of the party – or at least what is left of it after you and George’s drunken sailors’ party at the expense of the once good name of this nation.

Like the guest who came to dinner and feasted, you will not leave. How Rude and un-Emily Post of you dude!

If you are trying for the remake of Fatal Attraction and they say you can’t do the Glenn Close part even in drag – I will vouch for you and I’ll will pay to see that flick dudette.

Other than that, like Shakespeare who no doubt said after he no doubt sensed that the play had its full run - your hour upon the stage has come and gone Dear Mr. Cheney.

Take the advice from Matt below and enjoy your well (?) deserved retirement.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Christian America at a Crossroads

Newsweek tried to imitate Time and its 1966 blockbuster cover “Is God Dead?”

Newsweek is a pale reflection of that historic Time piece in the issue shown above from last week. Perhaps Journalism is in decline in America with a dozen other things including religion – I don’t know. I just know that we are in that long tunnel underground and traveling under water from one shore to another in terms of a cultural upheaval or is it merely our finally looking at reality – looking honestly at America as part of and not master of a Global World.

I do not like the term “post Christian America”. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Perhaps forty years of reaction to the Time question “Is God Dead?” and the last seismic shocks of Vatican II have finally petered out.

I read the Newsweek article below. Read it if you want to. It is not a masterpiece. It is statistics and observations whether true or not about faith in secular America and at a crossroads.

The End of Christian America

The only quote I will mention from the Newsweek article, page 4, comes from a former pope and an archbishop of Canterbury.
As always with the Bible, however, there are passages that complicate the picture. The author of Hebrews says believers are "strangers and exiles on the earth" and that "For here we have no lasting city, but seek the city which is to come." In Romans the apostle Paul advises: "Do not be conformed to this world." The Second Vatican Council cited these words of Pius XII: the Catholic Church's "divine Founder, Jesus Christ, has not given it any mandate or fixed any end of the cultural order. The goal which Christ assigns to it is strictly religious … The Church can never lose sight of the strictly religious, supernatural goal."

As an archbishop of Canterbury once said, though, it is a mistake to think that God is chiefly or even largely concerned with religion. "I hate the sound of your solemn assemblies," the Lord says in Amos. Religion is not only about worshipping your God but about doing godly things, and a central message of the Gospels is the duty of the Christian to transform, as best one can, reality through works of love. "Being in the world and not of it remains our charge," says Mohler. "The church is an eternal presence in a fallen, temporal world—but we are to have influence. The Sermon on the Mount is about what we are to do—but it does not come with a political handbook."

Here are a few lines from someone’s reaction to the recent Newsweek article about the so-called “Decline and Fall of Christian America” by Jim Wallis.

Rectifying a historic Christian mistake
The Religious Right was a Christian mistake. It was a movement that sought to implement a “Christian agenda” by tying the faithful to one political option -- the right wing of the Republican Party. The politicizing of faith in such a partisan way is always a theological mistake. But the rapid decline of the Religious Right now offers us a new opportunity to re-think the role of faith in American public life.

Personally, I am not offended or alarmed by the notion of a post-Christian America. Christianity was originally and in my view, always meant to be, a minority faith with a counter-cultural stance, as opposed to being the dominant cultural and political force. Notions of a 'Christian America' quite frankly have not turned out very well.

But that does not mean a lack of religious influence — on the contrary. Committed minorities have had a tremendous influence on cultures and even on politics. Just look at all the faith-inspired social-reform movements animated by people of faith. But Martin Luther King Jr. did not get the Civil Rights Act passed because he had the most Bible verses on his side but because he entered into the public square with compelling arguments, vision and policies that ultimately won the day. Those faith-inspired movements are disciplined by democracy, meaning they do not expect to win just because they are “Christian.” They have to win the debates about what is best for the common good by convincing their fellow citizens.

And that is best done by shaping the values narrative, as opposed to converting everyone to their particular brand of religion. Rather, they are always looking for allies around their moral causes, including people of other faiths or of no religion. The story of Christianity in America during the coming decades will be defined by a multicultural shift as well as by a generational one. 'New' evangelicals and Catholics, along with black, Hispanic, and Asian churches will now shape the agenda. But also included are the millions of Americans who say they are “spiritual but not religious,” and who find homes in non-traditional churches, mega-churches which teach that true religion is found in care for “the least of these.” Making a real impact on the values and directions that a democracy will choose is perhaps a more exciting kind of influence than relying on the illusory and often disappointing hopes of cultural and political dominance.
Food for thought.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Impeach Judge Jay Bybee

I don’t know if Federal Judge Jay Bybee should be handed over to an international War Crimes Tribunal or not. He is not Himmler. He is more a German Judge type tried at Nuremburg for only carrying out orders – a well paid and well pensioned rubberstamp for the regime. Only in this case he is one of the cadre of fascists in the Justice Department who wrote the rules saying this or that is okay which translates into torture.

He should resign as a matter of honor now that his anti-humanity memos have been out-ed of the closet at DOJ.

If not that then Impeach him! He is a sniveling yes man and poster boy for American fascism.

To list two of four common indictment counts against Nazi judges at Nuremburg listed below:
1. Participating in a common plan or conspiracy to commit war crimes and crimes against humanity;
2. War crimes through the abuse of the judicial and penal process, resulting in mass murder, torture, plunder of private property… Wikipedia – Judges’ Trial

Conspiracy is still conspiracy even if it is done in broad daylight and in the offices of the Department of Justice or the White House.

The hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians murdered in the US war of liberation I count in the mass murder thing. It was an unnecessary and illegal Act of War against another country by the US Regime in power. It was carried out and justified under the cover of American bias or misperception after 911 that "All Muslims are Bad!"

Torture against the bastards who took down the World Trade Center? Let’s not split fine hairs here. In real war you do what is necessary to protect you and yours.

Abu Ghraib Prison and Torture was part of the result of Jay Bybee's clean white shirt memos over at DOJ. Abu Ghraib they would have you believe was some misconduct by non-coms. What Bullshit! Evil is a smooth tongued devil – d’evil.

Not all judges are evil. Spanish Judge Baltazar Garzon, famous for bringing Chilean Dictator/Monster Augusto Pinochet to justice, has been thwarted on his current round to bring Bush cronies to justice in Spanish courts for torture conducted against Spanish citizens and under the direct or indirect auspices of Bush Justice Department (oxymoron) lawyers/henchmen, one now on the bench, who okayed torture

In a clear and present danger to our homeland, anything in war and or response is a likely thing to happen. But was there a real war on terror after 911? Or was there a hostile petroleum corporation takeover of Iraq also known as the Glorious American War of Liberation of the Iraqi People. Hey the old Pravda is dead. It was blood for oil and Jay Bybee did whatever it took to get a lifetime appointment as a US government bureaucrat.

I don’t know if this Pontius Pilate thing by Barry Obama is a test run – just releasing memos and hoping the need for prosecution gets lost or talked out in the media. He doesn’t want to harass the elite white ruling class of America so early into his administration. He is not a messiah type.

Let us remember that the President is just another corporate lawyer. That being what it may be - This is a first round of the game of Americans coming to grips and to fully view recent and current reality. They had been shielded from reality for decades in the name of national security: the prolonged phony cold war, the phony war on drugs and the phony war on terror – torture, gangsterism, and let’s not forget corporate gross mismanagement/crime on wall street. These are tough reality pills to swallow. Perhaps these bitter pills are necessary medicine.

Reality sometimes sucks and so does Justice when it has to be carried out by a free society.

If America is to survive into the whole of the 21st century and be great, it needs to at least fully investigate this recent disgrace and fall from humanity conducted by the thugs of the Bush Cheney Regime.

I managed to write this whole thing without once using the word morality. Hey, can anybody get me a job at Justice?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

No Salvation Outside Mel's Church


I think that Mel Gibson is a great actor. He manages to get pulled over in his own neighborhood for drunk driving and then starts on a some sort of anti-Jewish tirade in 2006. Great script!

I have always discounted his behavior that night as someone with a past drinking problem and then going off the wagon and then blacking out. I know people like that, like Mel drinking beer since age thirteen and after two beers in a bar, the next day, they don’t what they said or did the night before and then they ask you.

Mel, admit that he blacks out? Or has a dysfunctional family situation with Dad? Hell no. His Father is quoted by Mel in many places as “never having lied to him about anything” – like the Holocaust. Of course if Hutton Gibson has never lied about anything, doesn’t that make him perfect? And doesn’t that make Mel the son of God so to speak.

This narcissistic behavior out of the show biz types started or at least I labeled it as such when Michael Jackson was on top twenty five years ago. When you are that rich you can do or believe anything you want to. Until you get caught.

The whole anti-Semitic incident may have been a cowardly way for Mel to start the divorce process. Put a dozen projects on hold, hide the assets offshore and separate long enough for half your actual estate to disappear temporarily. Mel missed his true calling in life. He should have been a RC bishop.

Community property or not his spouse of twenty eight years will get about $120 million. It is a lot less than the 50% - 50% California community property split might promise. But she will get ten percent at least of book value of his properties. Ten percent cash is hard to come up with especially if you are land poor and movie project poor like old dear Mel.

I remember some years ago when they, the press, were talking about his cult church there in Malibu. Must be fifteen, twenty or more years ago. The news said he paid something like $500,000 to fund the construction of his designer religion traditionalist catholic church. Now that all the Hollywood news sites are getting their teeth into Mel – pay back time – I see that his Church is part of a foundation and he has supposedly spent $45 million dollars ??? on it as an ongoing building of a monument to himself and his exclusive religion. His own construction company too – talk about cooking the books. Like I said, he should have been a bishop to put such a low accounting tax book value on an adobe structure with how many acres of sub dividable Malibu real estate, ten, twenty, thirty? Whatever.

Reading all the petty Hollywood stuff, I went onto the Internet and went with the flow to see a few interesting things directly or indirectly related to Mad Max. This here is petty too I admit. Mea Culpa. Mea Culpa. But when I read that he thinks that his Episcopalian wife is an automatic send to “hell” – Christ what a medieval jerk she was married to and mothered seven of his known children with!

His church – his cult following – subscribes to the third century concept “extra Ecclesiam nulla salus” (“outside The Church there is no salvation”). This is the backbone of the Traditionalist Catholic movement – that and the Latin Mass. The old Church condemned all the non-Catholics, mostly Jews and Protestants back then to hell.

There is a hero, a saint, a martyr, of that fanatical Traditionalist anti-semitic branch of Catholicism. Have you ever heard of Leonard Feeney SJ, a Jesuit in Boston that got quite popular in his writings in the late 1940s into the early 1950s. Even the Vatican was embarrassed by his success. He managed to get excommunicated for not submitting to proper Vatican management of his activities. He would not tone down his rigid non-conforming exclusive interpretation of salvation within the Church only and never outside the Roman Catholic church.

Back in grade school, I heard the Leonard Feeney story from the nuns every year because he had some poetry in our outdated poetry books. His poems were about St. Mary and the nuns’ dedicated to St. Mary gave a kind rendition to us of why the pope f-----d Leonard Feeney for his views about the damnation of anybody outside the RC church. There was dissention in the ranks before Vatican II and even from nuns.

So when Vatican II defined, redefined who or who was not inside the Church, who would, could be saved from hell etc, the Tradionalists like Hutton Gibson went ape shit. Poor man could not get a decent night’s sleep with the noisy six million Jews (recently arrived immigrants) living in the apartment house next door to him in Queens NY. Had to move to Australia for breathing space so to speak. I think all this made an impression on young Mel. Whatever.

Like I said before Mel is a good actor. I wish him well on the building of his mini-Vatican in fashionable, expensive and exclusive Malibu. I also hope Robyn screws the pants off him in divorce court. Cheers mate.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Of God, UFOs and Gary McKinnon

I don’t know what to make of this story about Gary McKinnon. There is this fellow in Britain. He seems fairly articulate. He is diagnosed with a form of Autism which makes people obsessed and focused on a limited number of topics. His two topics seem to be UFOs and FREE ENERGY – two topics that supposedly caused him to hack into relatively unprotected and easily accessible NASA and PENTAGON computers in search of his pet projects.

There is this long extradition thing going on whereby the US wants him tried in the US and not in Britain where he would get a much lighter sentence if convicted. The previous administration no doubt had room for him in Gitmo - no trial, and rotting there until what he might have seen or discovered on the computer database is obsolete and old technology. Whatever.

This US GOVs big push to get their hands on Gary just leads to speculation that there really are UFOs. I believe in the possibility of other intelligent life in the universe. I am perhaps much more skeptical than the general public in terms of a belief in UFOs.

I have been looking for the bland Vatican statement about Extraterrestrials on the Internet some many years back but I can’t seem to locate it. It, the original statement not unlike my own, has been spun off into tens of thousands of tangents and contextual misquotes on websites and supporting the cottage industry that promotes topics such as UFOs, New Age, and other occult subjects.

Just because you have a fuzzy picture or see a fuzzy picture of something does not necessary make it a UFO, an angel or a shooting star.

British Hacker's Supporters Rally at US Embassy

Although McKinnon has publicly admitted to hacking into NASA and other military computers, he maintains he was merely curious and was looking for evidence of UFOs.

However, the U.S. alleges between 2001 and 2002 he deleted critical files, copied user names and passwords and intentionally caused damage on U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, NASA and Department of Defense computers and those belonging to universities and companies.

McKinnon's demure, inquisitive nature seems to have helped marshal support from many corners.

British authorities are pouring ever more money and police effort into fighting cybercrime. But McKinnon's hacking -- which wasn't aimed at stealing money -- seems to be widely regarded in Britain as harmless. The U.S. is pushing too hard, they say.

I believe in God. God created all things. That is my faith.

I do not believe in UFOs. Until I see or touch one, I am skeptical. That I think is existential.

If you have fifteen odd minutes to kill, this guy spins and delivers a good tale about the UFO thingy. I almost came to believe but I am an old dog and am set in my ways.

I can half picture someone as brilliant as this guy and as sharp and focused as he is and being someone not like the original wonder salesman of Saint Paul.

Who knows? I could wrong on many subjects including that of UFOs.

Be well.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

GOP and the New Racism

I do not think that it is intellectual or moral backbone that has the Cardinal Newman Society, a once harmless national on-campus organization, campaigning against President Obama, to prevent him from speaking at Notre Dame on May 17. I think it is out and out pure old fashioned racism. Not so recognizable as racism but the coded worded type so frequently used in the recent past.

This moral outrage – is it funded in anyway by the down and out GOP?

GOP money seems to be funding this tea bag thing against whatever – taxes? - too.

The GOP is looking for a hook. Anything that will stick and get them back into Sodom and Gomorrah like absolute power in Washington D.C.. This wanting "Obama to fail" strategy is publicly professed by Gingrich and Limbaugh among others. This wanting Obama to fail is unpatriotic in my opinion. I feel that it goes deeper than failed politics on the GOP side. I think it also goes to the level of race.

I don’t think it is coincidence that Tony Blair converted to Roman Catholicism as a prelude to his campaigning to be the first president of the EU.

I don’t think it a coincidence that Newt Gingrich has now converted to Roman Catholicism. I think the new “IN” for the republicans and their tired decades old “family values” hypocrisy is in hiding behind the skirts of the RC Church to push its fascist agenda forward.

I do not think it coincidence that a nationally mounted campaign in the Catholic Blogoshpere against Obama speaking at Notre Dame - or on any level - but with this run let's call it moral - and not racism coded or otherwise - is anything but a test run for politics and new GOP strategy.

If this new fascist strategy wrapped in moral sheep's clothing - if it works at Notre Dame, then the New Racism (the hook) is born and and the GOP will try to rise again using this new found gimmick of pushing its agenda forward on the "moral" Catholic Blogosphere, coded or otherwise.

I watched this person last night, this Raymond Arroyo “News” anchor on the EWTN – Eternal Word Television Network – and heard him pump up and advance this (covert racist) campaign by the Cardinal Newman Society to throw the black guy off campus at Notre Dame. The spokesperson for the Cardinal Newman society said that he would be happy if they withdrew the honorary degree and the (second class negro citizen) President be allowed to only talk at the commencement.

Sound familiar? ASU in Tempe Arizona will not give the black guy an honorary degree. Like what has Obama done lately? Not much apparently. Arizona, has a republican Governor and two republican senators. Arizona, under a republican governor, shot down the MLK federal holiday a generation ago – a good red neck state and it’s Universities suck too.

I had come to believe lately that the party of Lincoln and their recent round of debauchery, of sodomy in airport bathrooms and fondling page boys in the Capitol hallways and the adultery, drunk driving and making of bastard children was on its way out for a long needed rest.

But no. Fox News may be in decline. The Catholic Blogosphere is the next wave, the secret weapon of the GOP. I told you that Roman Catholicism was not a fascist religion so much as a religion in search of a fascist patron – President Newt Gingrich?

I can’t find any credible journalistic credentials for this Pee Wee Herman look alike spokesperson for the Church of Rome – Mr. Arroyo seems to be an official spokesperson supporting the church’s (racist?) policies in Africa and the Pope’s evil (coded) pronouncements on condoms. We in the west don’t take the Pope’s unscientific pronouncements on condoms seriously.

But a bunch of poor uneducated Africans do take the words of the pope as sacred or sounding like they come from Mt. Sinai or such.

The pope is not pro-life
Appearing on Fox's O'Reilly Factor last week, I debated the pope's statement with writer Raymond Arroyo. I pointed out that UNAIDS, calls the condom the “single, most efficient, available technology to reduce the sexual transmission of HIV.” Arroyo responded with a bizarre conspiracy theory saying that the United Nations group was only trying to “protect the government infusion of money to these condom programs that have demonstrably not worked at all.”

Then I asked Arroyo point blank: “If all the condoms in Africa magically disappeared, would the number of HIV cases increase or decrease?”

He responded that HIV would decrease if people would model their lives on the pope's “ideal way in which to live.”

In the ideal world promoted by Arroyo, priests would not rape little boys, while getting shuffled around parishes to protect the church. In the real world, the Vatican has spent millions of dollars to pay for child abuse lawsuits. In Arroyo's fantasy world, young people pledge abstinence until marriage. In the real world, studies show that teens taking virginity pledges were just as likely to engage in sex—and less likely to use birth control or condoms when they finally did.

Beware of the new power of the RC church as an agent of the GOP.

Fascism in America or it’s secret agenda within the GOP is not dead yet.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Of gods, Monsters and Intelligent Design?

I don’t know what to make of all the fake science that is trying to get endorsed or believed these days.

Intelligent Design is supposed to tell us that the universe is not a random chaotic thing, which it is. They would have you believe that there is an intelligent design (by God) to the whole mess. The Vatican and or its German speaking surrogates such as Cardinal Schoenborn of Vienna back Intelligent Design.

There is supposed to be some international meeting of minds or conference on Darwin sponsored by the Vatican on the calendar right about now. Don’t hold your breath expecting any intelligent outcome or pronouncements. One critic, the former head of the Vatican Observatory Father George V. Coyne, a real scientist, got fired over his views about real rational science, which is opposed to fake science or Intelligent Design. I don’t think he was invited to this Darwin Conference thing.

The whole folly comes within the realm of Voltaire from his book Candide and the philosophical falsity that this world is “le meilleur des mondes possibles” – the best of all possible worlds. Délusion. Délusion. Délusion.

If the earth is of an intelligent design then why did the Intelligent Designer waste hundreds of millions of years on the Dinosaur Project ???

The Creationist theory will tell you that the Bible, being the exact and perfect world of God, proves that science is wrong in determining the age of the earth. They will tell you that all physical evidence must fit into the five thousand year old timeframe of the Bible. That is why if you stop off at some GOP endorsed Creationist Museum, you will see our ancestors, as cave men and women, living in harmony with the dinosaur things.

The Bible is a flawed document. The bible is a human document. The New Testament is a committee written document. Jesus changes from a human being to a god in the time frame of three hundred years. Jesus’ words, wisdom, divine inspiration and divine mission have been subordinated to politics since his death almost two thousand years ago.

Did he rise from the dead ? Definitely. As a Christian I believe that. God can do anything including raise the dead. To believe in Jesus is to believe in the higher powers of an evolved, evolving species called man. I have faith in the non-tangible abilities and powers of God and his servant Jesus.

These religious screamers call faith, faith, faith. I do not think they believe or have faith. They need an exact user manual for life – a rule book. If anything, the day to day struggle of Jesus to get imperfect people to listen to his more perfect evolved message for the human race seems at times to have been wasted on many deaf human ears.

So too the flaws of the Old Testament are obvious. The Hebrew Testament does not get written or fully consolidated until after the Babylonian captivity. Along the way to consolidation several non-communicating committees manage to lose ten tribes and the Ark of the Covenant.

Tangible things such as fake relics like the Shroud of Turin or a Jesus Ossuary - speaks of non-faith in the original person and the true message of the teacher of Jesus.

What I have found or sensed along the way of this study of my own beliefs is the negatuve reception or reaction of others to the Gnostic concept of a divine spark within. Negative belief too in the possiblility of Jesus as a bearer or in his own recognition of that divinity. The role of bearer and of recognition connotes great responsibility to go forward in life as bearer of the light of God within and with that light to be given freely to others. Few of us now or in the generations past have come close to the ideal of Jesus as evolved enlightened being and creation of God.

There is hope - the human race continues and “Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”…(W.B.Yeats)

The problem with the Gnostic belief approach is that 99.9% of humanity do not seem to want responsibility. They want to be sheep and they want to be led. As such, the P.T.Barnum types in the Vatican and the far right fundamentalists need road shows, conferences, freak shows, museums, literal interpretation of myths - tangible proof of their so-called faith – which is not faith but seems so much more like superstition.

The show goes on.

Popcorn! Peanuts! Cotton Candy!