Pharyngula

Om lingalingalinalinga, kilikili

i-17bc8e5c3d658494e51472cef12ad816-curses.jpg

The laughing fellow on the left is Sanal Edamaruku, president of Rationalist International and atheist. The cranky old man in the robes on the right is Pandit Surinder Sharma, a self-described Tantrik Magician. The scene is in a studio on Indian television, where the magician is trying to kill the atheist with sorcery. Sharma had said he could kill anyone with sympathetic magic inflicted on a doll made of dough, and that he could accomplish this in a mere three minutes … so Edamaruku confidently offered himself as a victim. The old fake went on for hours and failed.

After nearly two hours, the anchor declared the tantrik’s failure. The tantrik, unwilling to admit defeat, tried the excuse that a very strong god whom Sanal might be worshipping obviously protected him. “No, I am an atheist,” said Sanal Edamaruku. Finally, the disgraced tantrik tried to save his face by claiming that there was a never-failing special black magic for ultimate destruction, which could, however, only been done at night. Bad luck again, he did not get away with this, but was challenged to prove his claim this very night in another “breaking news” live program.

Edamaruku obliged and willing went to his “doom” that night.

The encounter took place under the open night sky. The tantrik and his two assistants were kindling a fire and staring into the flames. Sanal was in good humour. Once the ultimate magic was invoked, there wouldn’t be any way back, the tantrik warned. Within two minutes, Sanal would get crazy, and one minute later he would scream in pain and die. Didn’t he want to save his life before it was too late? Sanal laughed, and the countdown begun. The tantriks chanted their “Om lingalingalingalinga, kilikilikili….” followed by ever changing cascades of strange words and sounds. The speed increased hysterically. They threw all kinds of magic ingredients into the flames that produced changing colours, crackling and fizzling sounds and white smoke. While chanting, the tantrik came close to Sanal, moved his hands in front of him and touched him, but was called back by the anchor. After the earlier covert attempts of the tantrik to use force against Sanal, he was warned to keep distance and avoid touching Sanal. But the tantrik “forgot” this rule again and again.

Now the tantrik wrote Sanal’s name on a sheet of paper, tore it into small pieces, dipped them into a pot with boiling butter oil and threw them dramatically into the flames. Nothing happened. Singing and singing, he sprinkled water on Sanal, mopped a bunch of peacock feathers over his head, threw mustard seed into the fire and other outlandish things more. Sanal smiled, nothing happened, and time was running out. Only seven more minutes before midnight, the tantrik decided to use his ultimate weapon: the clod of wheat flour dough. He kneaded it and powdered it with mysterious ingredients, then asked Sanal to touch it. Sanal did so, and the grand magic finale begun. The tantrik pierced blunt nails on the dough, then cut it wildly with a knife and threw them into the fire. That moment, Sanal should have broken down. But he did not. He laughed. Forty more seconds, counted the anchor, twenty, ten, five… it’s over!

This sounds fun! I’ve been getting email lately from creationists telling me I should die, I should be fired, I should suffer horribly, but all they do is whine that they’re going to mumble to their god to have me destroyed. They should take a lesson from their Indian brethren and start using flash powder and chanting nonsense syllables — it would be no more effective, but it would be much more entertaining.

Comments

  1. #1 Scaurus
    March 24, 2008

    Is this on YouTube?

  2. #2 Sue Laris
    March 24, 2008

    Frauds like these are what give us real magicians a bad name with the science community!
    Seriously, this tan’n’trick guy sounds like he got part of his act from Bugs Bunny – y’know, the one where he and Daffy are in Aladdin’s cave and Bugs pretends to be a genie. THAT was a GREAT spell, and dance!

  3. #3 MS
    March 24, 2008

    I felt like death this morning… wonder what name REALLY went into that pot?

  4. #4 Sili
    March 24, 2008

    Duh. Of course he died.

    But he rose again (perhaps it was yeasted rather than leavened dough).

    The poor Edamaruku is a *god*, but suffers under the delsusion that he is not.

    Sad, really.

  5. #5 Snoof
    March 24, 2008

    From the XKCD forums, on this topic:

    The Indian mystics have much to learn from the Western ones. Particularly in the area of “dodging requests to demonstrate spiritual powers.”

  6. #6 danley
    March 24, 2008

    The tardacity is spellbindingly stupid.

  7. #7 craig
    March 24, 2008

    So did the tantrik have a tantrum?

    (I know bad, bad bad stupid joke. Humor me, it’s way past my bedtime so anything stupid and silly is funny. I call this “The Letterman Effect.”)

  8. #8 Mark B
    March 24, 2008

    You know if this sort of thing actually worked, fellows like the poor swami wouldn’t be doing parlor tricks on reality TV programs. They’d be blackmailing Bill Gates or something. Ah, after reading the linked article, that looks exactly to be their game. Edamaruku did a great service to Indians by debunking this crap.

  9. #9 Chris
    March 24, 2008

    I’m impressed. If I had some guy gibbering madly, wielding a knife, and tossing strange chemicals into a fire, I might be somewhat worried that I might die by perfectly normal causes. Kudos to Mr. Edamaruku.

  10. #10 alex
    March 24, 2008

    let’s just appreciate how lucky mr Edamaruku is that Uri Gellar wasn’t helping out the tantrik chap.
    - could have been some pretty serious woo bustin’ out of the both of them.

  11. #11 ngong
    March 24, 2008

    The causes of global warming and stem cell research are clearly lost, what with Myers, Dawkins, and now Sanal associating science and atheism.

  12. #12 firemancarl
    March 24, 2008

    It would have been really funny if Sanal had fallen to he ground when the wooer threw stuff into the fire then got up and said “Just kidding!”

  13. #13 Reginald Selkirk
    March 24, 2008

    I don’t know if I could go in for this – I’d be worried that those secret powders they were tossing around had secret names like “cyanide” or some such.

  14. #14 Pala
    March 24, 2008

    What I find most worrying is that Pandit completed his ritual all the while believing it would result in the death of a fellow human being.

  15. #15 Suricou Raven
    March 24, 2008

    If a thousand magicians tried this a thousand times each,
    And in a single demonstration the target suffered a sudden heart attack,
    This would become the event many declare to be proof that the magic works.

    Much like prayer really.

  16. #16 Matt Heath
    March 24, 2008

    I don’t know much about the law in India but isn’t attempted murder illegal most places. Even really lame attempted murder.

  17. #17 Russell
    March 24, 2008

    The more clever religions relegate their promised destruction to an afterlife, where it is not so easily exposed as fraud.

  18. #18 Bride of Shrek
    March 24, 2008

    James Randi does a wonderful expose of this kook om JREF. Not content to be being made look like a complete tosser on national TV this idiot went back a SECOND TIME for another woo woo “attempted murder”. Some people just never ever learn.

  19. #19 An
    March 24, 2008

    It makes me sad when death threats come from religious people. Arent they suppose to be more righteous than we are? PFFT.

  20. #20 Carlie
    March 24, 2008

    [waiting impatiently for Cuttlefish]
    :)

  21. #21 Elwood Herring
    March 24, 2008

    Wow – apparently I have this amazingly strong force called “atheism” protecting me, and I don’t even have to worship it. All I have to do is NOT believe in any god at all.
    I feel powerful!

    The tide is turning…

  22. #22 Larry
    March 24, 2008

    Now the tantrik wrote Sanal’s name on a sheet of paper, tore it into small pieces, dipped them into a pot with boiling butter oil

    What else is there to say but, “mmmmmmmm, butter”. Seriously, though, next time, bring some popcorn. That way, it won’t be a total waste of time.

  23. #23 Kseniya
    March 24, 2008

    Sharma had said he could kill anyone with sympathetic magic inflicted on a doll made of dough

    Dough? D’oh! The fool! He was supposed to use a newspaper doll stuffed with fertilizer soaked in fuel oil.

    Edamaruku dodged a bullet, I tell you.

    (The whole exercise is appalling, actually.)

  24. #24 DrFrank
    March 24, 2008

    Oh come on, it’s blatantly obvious that the skeptic guy had had Greater Spell Immunity cast on him – it completely protects against one spell of up to 8th level per four levels.

    Either that, or skeptics just naturally exude a personal antimagic field ;)

  25. #25 Mark B
    March 24, 2008

    What I find most worrying is that Pandit completed his ritual all the while believing it would result in the death of a fellow human being.

    I kind of doubt he thought that. I suspect he expected his ‘subject’ to get scared and chicken out at some time in the ceremony, thereby proving his power over life and death. Kudos to Edamaruku for his courage.

  26. #26 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    Sounds like the tantric has spent too much time in the mountains of madness. kilikili or tekelili?

  27. #27 Kseniya
    March 24, 2008

    a very strong god whom Sanal might be worshipping obviously protected him.

    This is true, you know – Sanal was protected by something, even though it isn’t really a god and Sanal doesn’t really worship it. I call it “reality”.

  28. #28 Kseniya
    March 24, 2008

    Oops, Elwood sorta beat me to the punch, there…

  29. #29 yo
    March 24, 2008

    This is funny to us, atheists. But if you show it to any religious, they’ll claim the story is fake, and hence we are liars.

    So, video or it didn’t happen. Or at least confirmation from another source that this took place.

  30. #30 Christian
    March 24, 2008

    Well, I sure as hell would have died…

    …of asphyxia resulting from extreme laughter that is.

  31. #31 Lee Brimmicombe-Wood
    March 24, 2008

    Damn that they couldn’t get this magic to work on the atheist. However, I’ve discovered Edamaruku has a weakness…

    …to bullets.

  32. #32 extatyzoma
    March 24, 2008

    sharma needs to ‘console’ himself by playing the Indian Dhalsim in the street fighter video game, that guy has stretchy limbs, can teleport, breathe fire (his so called ‘yoga flame’) and ‘kill’ the opponents!!

  33. #33 Escuerd
    March 24, 2008

    Isn’t a “linga” a phallus? I won’t even guess what the “kili” bit may have been.

  34. #34 waldteufel
    March 24, 2008

    They do chant unrecognizable syllables around here . . .they call it speaking in “tongues”.

    Christians do it all the time, while muttering to their grand poobah in the sky.

  35. #35 Elwood Herring
    March 24, 2008

    On the other hand, he could just claim that the magic spells worked just fine, they just take about 50-60 years to kick in.

  36. #36 mthartenstein
    March 24, 2008

    If anyone in the TV business is following this blog I think they should consider a new reality show based on this idea. Similar to Penn and Teller’s debunking show on cable a few years ago. Each week you invite another instrument of god to the show then have them perform a miracle of some sort. My favorite guy is Ernest Angeley. I think he’s out of Akron, anyway, I’ve caught him a few times late at night when I need a lift. He always has a segment when he invites people up the stage, asks them what their particular malady is then waps them on the head invoking some mumbo jumbo about god and satan and “poof” they’re cured

    I happened to catch him for a few minutes over the holidays…okay I have a week spot for the sublime…and he was doing his act in a tent in Jamaica. The locals got wapped on the forehead then looked completely bewildered as Angeley told them they were cured. It was hysterical. Great T.V.

  37. #37 Genuinely Doug
    March 24, 2008

    LOL. Just be careful of the nutcases who claim to act in the name of a deity.

    An atheist professor was teaching a college class and he told the class that he was going to prove that there is no God. He said, “God, if you are real, then I want you to knock me off this platform. I’ll give you 15 minutes!”

    Ten minutes went by. He kept taunting God, saying, “Here I am, God. I’m still waiting.”

    He got down to the last couple of minutes and a Marine just returned from the Gulf and released from active duty and newly registered in the class walked up to the professor, hit him full force in the face, and sent him flying from his platform. The professor struggled up, obviously shaken and yelled, “What’s the matter with you? Why did you do that?”

    The Marine replied, “God was busy watching over my buddies engaged in combat.”

  38. #38 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    GDoug, that sounds like fiction to me. It’s too convenient a story, and I’m to believe that’s the end of the tale? Where’s the part about the jarhead getting arrested, or at least booted from the class?

  39. #39 AJ Milne
    March 24, 2008

    Re ‘asphyxia resulting from extreme laughter’, seriously, from the description of that nutter’s antics, it almost sounds like maybe that had been his plan all along.

  40. #40 RamblinDude
    March 24, 2008

    Con men are everywhere..

    This reminds me of the “Kiai” master, on YouTube who helped to give aikido a bad name. (What this guy was shoveling had nothing to do with aikido.)

  41. #41 RAM
    March 24, 2008

    We can all do the same, and I have a number of times. When a believer is assaulting my ear hole with the supposed power of god to bring down lightning bolts from the heavens on unbelievers, or some other load of bull, I’ve called on their god to do exactly that, right now, within that specific minute. And I stand there waiting smiling. Amazingly, they step back like they actually expect something to happen. Of course, nothing happens. I remind them that dying 20 years from now of a natural death does not count. Since it’s demonstrated their god has no actual power when nothing happens, all they can do is bleat “blasphemy”.

  42. #42 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    RAM, those were my earliest experiences with the impotence of mythical figures. Now when the trolling proseletyzers come around, I will be asking them why they need to go door to door, if prayer works.

  43. #43 Kamikaze189
    March 24, 2008

    Make sure, should you do such a test, you specify lightning, flood, or some other disaster. And exclude humans.

  44. #44 Forrest Prince
    March 24, 2008

    ZOMG, PZ! This is one of the funniest debunkings of a fakir I have ever seen. This is just too delicious.

    I just shared this post with my wife, who’s Mormon. (I’m atheist). She laughed out loud. Especially at the “lingalingalinga…” part. Now maybe she’ll start giving her own magic underwear a second thought.

    Anyhow, a good laugh was had by all.

  45. #45 Sili
    March 24, 2008

    Still not sure what True Bob’s “tekelili” refers to, but I thought I’d share this nice piece of cephalo-art that Google brought me.

  46. #46 CalGeorge
    March 24, 2008

    The explanation is obvious:

    Sanal Edamaruku is SATAN. Everyone knows you can’t om lingalingalingalinga, kilikilikili SATAN!

  47. #47 True Bob
    March 24, 2008
  48. #48 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    Sili, to be specific, since it is a long short story, tekeli-li is what HP had as the closest approximation of the insidious piping call of the shoggoth.

  49. #49 Ebo Tebo
    March 24, 2008

    KiliKili is Vasayan slang for “armpit”!!!

  50. #50 raven
    March 24, 2008

    The Marine replied, “God was busy watching over my buddies engaged in combat.”

    It is an urban legend. A lie. Check snopes.

    Fundies constantly Make Up Stuff and pass it around among themselves. One ever popular one is about whatever the latest immigrant group is, stealing babies out of shopping carts at Walmart for reasons that vary with the telling.

    I suppose these days it is probably atheists stealing babies.

  51. #51 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    Well come on, raven, it is picnic season…

  52. #52 Sili
    March 24, 2008

    Ah. Thank you.

    I’d never even heard of Lovecraft till I started reading webcomics. I believe he has been translated into Danish, but it’s not a genre I’ve ever really indulged in.

  53. #53 Sastra
    March 24, 2008

    I love to see stuff like this debunked, in part because I know people here in America who laugh scornfully at the televangelists, but consider all “non-Western spirituality” to be sacred and worthy of true respect. Plus, they say, it really works: people from these countries have not become corrupted like the decadent scientific West. They can access real powers through their connection to deep and ancient wisdom. Shamans and gurus should therefore always be treated with kid gloves and deference, as a precious and special link to spiritual truths our ancestors once knew, but we have lost. Otherwise, it’s bigotry and ignorance.

    I’m especially glad that the laughing atheist was Sanal Edamaruku, who is non-Western himself. That way nobody can come look at it and whine about the marginalization and disrespect for Other Cultures by the nasty white guy using shallow Western Ways of Thinking. Not East, not West, just good old reason vs nonsense working all the way around the globe.

    No sacred cows.

  54. #54 Mark
    March 24, 2008

    #14
    “What I find most worrying is that Pandit completed his ritual all the while believing it would result in the death of a fellow human being.”

    I’m still surprised he hasn’t said that he didn’t seriously want the guy to die, and this is why he failed. Then no one who believed before would have a reason to lose that belief, even though all of us would laugh and say “whatever, dumbass”.

  55. #55 Christian
    March 24, 2008

    I’m especially glad that the laughing atheist was Sanal Edamaruku, who is non-Western himself. That way nobody can come look at it and whine about the marginalization and disrespect for Other Cultures by the nasty white guy using shallow Western Ways of Thinking.

    Ahh, that’s why it didn’t work. These rituals were developed to get rid of those white Western folks like the Portuguese and British who invaded India several hundred years ago. They are gone now, so obviously it worked.

    ;D

  56. #56 Moses
    March 24, 2008

    Well, he can always get a job with Benny Hinn…

  57. #57 Olav
    March 24, 2008

    Reminds me of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEDaCIDvj6I

    Also very funny.

  58. #58 Rey Fox
    March 24, 2008

    “GDoug, that sounds like fiction to me.”

    Raven is right. The most parsimonious explanation for that story is that it’s what the authoritarian lunkheads that populate much of this country consider “humor”. You know, big strapping Marine decks professor in the jaw to make a clumsy point about the all-powerful Sky Daddy, funny stuff! That’ll teach Mr. Smart Guy to make my head hurt!

  59. #59 Genuinely Doug
    March 24, 2008

    @38, True Bob

    GDoug, that sounds like fiction to me

    It certainly is. Its just a joke that I have seen used by both creationist and atheist alike to illustrate their point on the existence of god.

  60. #60 bill r
    March 24, 2008

    I thought Tantra was about great sex.

  61. #61 Ferrous Patella
    March 24, 2008

    Maybe it was Edamaruku’s atheism that saved him. I picture a scene ala Pratchett’s heaven in _Small Gods_. The countdown is ticking away and Sharma’s god is frantically searching around the god hall so he can kick Edamaruku’s god’s butt, but *He can’t find him!* So Edamaruku lives.

  62. #62 phantomreader42
    March 24, 2008

    raven @#50

    Fundies constantly Make Up Stuff and pass it around among themselves. One ever popular one is about whatever the latest immigrant group is, stealing babies out of shopping carts at Walmart for reasons that vary with the telling.

    I suppose these days it is probably atheists stealing babies.

    Sounds a lot like the old “blood libel”, doesn’t it? I wonder how long before they get around to dusting off the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and substituting a few terms? Is that Ann Coulter’s next project? And is Ken Ham taking a break from raping piglets to help out?

  63. #63 dave
    March 24, 2008

    Quote: “This sounds fun! I’ve been getting email lately from creationists telling me I should die, I should be fired, I should suffer horribly, but all they do is whine that they’re going to mumble to their god to have me destroyed.”

    Wow, well you know your fellow pharyngulites love you.

    “Hatas wanna hate,
    Lovas wanna love,
    I don’t even want
    None of the above.
    I want to piss on you”

    Well, actually only in the case that you’re stung by a jellyfish.

  64. #64 Ktesibios
    March 24, 2008

    Sili, to be specific, since it is a long short story, tekeli-li is what HP had as the closest approximation of the insidious piping call of the shoggoth.

    Posted by: True Bob

    If it be so, Lovecraft must have lifted it from Poe’s “The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym”.

    The whole megillah reminds me of something from another of my favorite 19th-Century authors:

    Every time the magic of fol-de-rol tried conclusions with the magic of science, the magic of fol-de-rol got left.

    -Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court

  65. #65 True Bob
    March 24, 2008

    Thanks, Ktesibios. Lovecraft was certainly inspired in many ways by Poe. Here’s the connection between the two, per wiki:

    Lovecraft’s most obvious literary source for At the Mountains of Madness is Edgar Allan Poe’s lone novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, whose concluding section is set in Antarctica. Lovecraft twice cites Poe’s “disturbing and enigmatical” story in his text, and explicitly borrows the mysterious phrase “Tekeli-li” from Poe’s work. In a letter to August Derleth, Lovecraft wrote that he was trying to achieve with his ending an effect similar to what Poe accomplished in Pym.

  66. #66 David Marjanovi?, OM
    March 24, 2008

    James Randi does a wonderful expose of this kook om JREF. Not content to be being made look like a complete tosser on national TV this idiot went back a SECOND TIME for another woo woo “attempted murder”. Some people just never ever learn.

    I shouldn’t laugh so loud at this time of the night between such thin walls.

    (Assuming the neighbors haven’t gotten used to it by now, that is.)

    Re ‘asphyxia resulting from extreme laughter’, seriously, from the description of that nutter’s antics, it almost sounds like maybe that had been his plan all along.

    That’s it. Consider this a Molly nomination.

    Ahh, that’s why it didn’t work. These rituals were developed to get rid of those white Western folks like the Portuguese and British who invaded India several hundred years ago. They are gone now, so obviously it worked.

    :-D

    Maybe it was Edamaruku’s atheism that saved him. I picture a scene ala Pratchett’s heaven in _Small Gods_. The countdown is ticking away and Sharma’s god is frantically searching around the god hall so he can kick Edamaruku’s god’s butt, but *He can’t find him!* So Edamaruku lives.

    Man, am I undereducated. :-o

  67. #67 David Marjanovi?, OM
    March 24, 2008

    James Randi does a wonderful expose of this kook om JREF. Not content to be being made look like a complete tosser on national TV this idiot went back a SECOND TIME for another woo woo “attempted murder”. Some people just never ever learn.

    I shouldn’t laugh so loud at this time of the night between such thin walls.

    (Assuming the neighbors haven’t gotten used to it by now, that is.)

    Re ‘asphyxia resulting from extreme laughter’, seriously, from the description of that nutter’s antics, it almost sounds like maybe that had been his plan all along.

    That’s it. Consider this a Molly nomination.

    Ahh, that’s why it didn’t work. These rituals were developed to get rid of those white Western folks like the Portuguese and British who invaded India several hundred years ago. They are gone now, so obviously it worked.

    :-D

    Maybe it was Edamaruku’s atheism that saved him. I picture a scene ala Pratchett’s heaven in _Small Gods_. The countdown is ticking away and Sharma’s god is frantically searching around the god hall so he can kick Edamaruku’s god’s butt, but *He can’t find him!* So Edamaruku lives.

    Man, am I undereducated. :-o

  68. #68 Daniel
    March 24, 2008

    Maybe he could take a few cues from Christians. They do a lot of spinning when their claims are disconfirmed. Pick any of the following:

    - He’ll die… eventually! It may take 70 years, but the magic will work.

    - The important thing is not whether I managed to kill someone or not, the important thing is that we learn to accept Gods’ will and build our faith in them.

    - Sometimes Kali says ‘no’.

  69. #69 David Marjanovi?, OM
    March 24, 2008

    From the original article:

    The whole program is video-recorded and is available. If you want a copy, please contact: info_desk@rationalistinternational.net

  70. #70 David Marjanovi?, OM
    March 24, 2008

    From the original article:

    The whole program is video-recorded and is available. If you want a copy, please contact: info_desk@rationalistinternational.net

  71. #71 triviality
    March 24, 2008

    Pandit Surinder Sharma is obviously less a fakir than a faker.

  72. #72 EJ
    March 24, 2008

    Hats off to Mr. Edamaruku. I love how in the pictures he really seems to be having quite a good time.

    I doubt that this will convince many people though. If you’re inclined to believe in this sort of woo you’ll most likely either conclude either that this particular magician isn’t as powerful as he claims, or, as the guy suggested, Mr. Edamaruku is being protected by a particularly powerful god (and lying about his atheism to humiliate the magician).

    Doesn’t really invalidate the underlying belief system.

  73. #73 catta
    March 24, 2008

    Now that’s entertainment! Don’t see why it isn’t just put on YouTube though, instead of having to email the stuff back and forth. :(

    Anyway,

    I picture a scene ala Pratchett’s heaven in _Small Gods_…

    Ah, but that would be a very, very different (Disc)world to begin with. Quoting from memory, “it was hard to be an atheist in a world where the gods could come by and kick in your windows”. This world is one where the gods are apparently hard pressed to knock politely on doors without the help of their human minions. ;)

  74. #74 t
    March 25, 2008

    This is what they watch in India? Snuff TV? Is this a weekly series where the hook is that in the last installment it actually works? Is premeditated murder legal in India as long as it’s televised and you’re dressed for a Toga Party? Is this where reality TV is headed when the ratings really tank? Are we there yet?

  75. #75 Russell Seitz
    March 25, 2008

    Haven’t bumped into this dusde, but I dropped in on Malo Kili Kili in Vanuatu ( nee the New Hebrides) the other decade, where the locals were terrified of their opposite numbers across the channel on Epi:

    “Epi man,he putem one leaf you path, you steppem leaf you die finis.”

    No tantrickery mind you- local poisin custom involves loading nettley leaves with cone shell and/or sea snake venom and letting nature take its course.

  76. #76 Graham
    March 25, 2008

    In “Strange Powers” by Arthur C. Clarke, he lists a number of cases where maledictions (death curses) took effect. It’s power is depends solely on the strength of belief in the person being cursed, and the dying person can be cured with a placebo (when the accursed believes medical doctors have as or more powerful juju than the witch doctors).

    The physiology hasn’t been completely sorted out, but if you truly believe that you have been cursed with death, your parasympathetic nervous system can stop your heart and breathing, and you die.

    Pandit Surinder Sharma believed in his own powers. You can be sure from here on out he will only apply death curses to people that believe him.

  77. #77 allonym
    March 25, 2008

    Neat story! I’m sure that when fundie christians read it they find the magician as ridiculous and amusing as we do. And I’m sure they also read it and think “…but that atheist guy’s definitely going to hell someday…”

    *sniffle* I think my irony meter’s broken! *sniffle sniff*

  78. #78 paulh
    March 25, 2008

    “…Swear not at all, for for thy curse/Thine enemy is none the worse …”

  79. #79 Andreas Johansson
    March 25, 2008

    I’m especially glad that the laughing atheist was Sanal Edamaruku, who is non-Western himself. That way nobody can come look at it and whine about the marginalization and disrespect for Other Cultures by the nasty white guy using shallow Western Ways of Thinking. Not East, not West, just good old reason vs nonsense working all the way around the globe.

    People of that particular persuasion would, I expect, claim that Edamaruku ‘s a westernized overloper.

  80. #80 cliff
    March 25, 2008

    ha. I was gonna post that death touch VS. MMA guy

  81. #81 Planet Killer
    March 25, 2008

    Nobody want’s to kill you. It’s all in your delusional brain that you somehow think you can cure man’s so called ignorance by trying to substitute one religion for another.

    What? You don’t think Athiesm is not a religion, please don’t be so ignorant.

    I don’t mind Athiesm, I really don’t. What bothers me is people saying I am ignorant because I believe in a higher power and yes this can lead to things like discrimination against christians or others.

    I do love Science as well, it provides some good things in our lives and it makes us live longer. However, Evolution as a whole has not been fully proven without a doubt and this is a part of science which I feel is really the real psudeoscience. Evolution is more of a hypothesis rather than a theory (however the lack of evidence is covered up and anyone that does not believe in hilter, I mean evolution is stupid). Sorry, boys, some of us don’t believe everything we are told just because someone tries to make up stories.

    No, it’s not my religion telling me this, it is more like Evolution is different than any other part of science. You cannot fully prove it without a doubt. With almost all of science things have been tested and retested over and over again and that is how things are found out to be true, but Evolution is the only part of science that has not been bulletproof when trying to test.

    When you are a scientist who is an Athiest, you can give degrees to only those who are Athiests and believe like you do and thus this creates an extremely and scary world view.

    If you are an Athiest you have that right to believe what you want to believe, but you do not have the right to put your opinions over my world view and that is exactly what is happening.

    “How long before religious people are put to death because they are ignorant.”

    Sounds like something out of World War II, well give it time folks because this is where we are heading.

    Laugh about this all now as it sounds crazy, or does it? This blog is very proof that it is coming. Minority today, Majority tomorrow.

  82. #82 llanitedave
    March 26, 2008

    Planet Killer — “Laugh about this all now as it sounds crazy, or does it? This blog is very proof that it is coming. Minority today, Majority tomorrow.”

    Hmmmm…. Christians persecuted minority: Check.

    Evolution isn’t science: Check.

    Creationist claims to “like” science, but is obviously ignorant of it: Check.

    Atheism is a religion: Check.

    “You have a right to believe what you want as long as you agree with me”: Check.

    Yep — looks like all the bases are covered.

    Poe’s law, anyone?

  83. #83 FastLane
    March 26, 2008

    I don’t think it’s Poe’s law, but it’s hard to distinguish Tue Supidity (TM) from parody. PLanet Killer should be named ‘brain cell killer’. The Stupid, it burns.

  84. #84 kb
    April 2, 2008
  85. #85 Ichthyic
    April 2, 2008

    It’s all in your delusional brain that you somehow think you can cure man’s so called ignorance by trying to substitute one religion for another.

    funny, isn’t that the function of evangelism?

    oh me, oh my, what’s a missionary to do, eh?

    projection, thy name is fundie.

  86. #86 Physicalist
    April 24, 2008

    More crazy believers in magic. This one penis theft.

  87. #87 m?rc m?rc m?rc m?rc m?rc
    December 31, 2008

    thank’s

  88. #88 ?iir
    March 24, 2009

    thanks

  89. #90 Hosting
    March 27, 2009

    Edamaruku is that Uri Gellar wasn’t helping out the tantrik chap.

  90. #91 forum
    March 29, 2009

    Thank You

  91. #92 mirc
    March 29, 2009

    Thank You For This Topic

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