Pharyngula

This one crosses religious boundaries — it will get me in trouble with some atheists, even. What is one act that will turn many a respectable citizen of Western society into a gibbering denialist?

Sex.

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We have an unfortunate cultural association between religion and sex. Sex is dirty; sex is sinful; sex is corruption; sex is filthy; sex will lead you into iniquity and evil. Christianity is rife with these attitudes, and you can find them imbedded deeply into the Bible. Often it’s because women are regarded as particularly wicked tempters, the source of original sin, and just itching to destroy you with their sweet, sweet flesh.

Proverbs 5: My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding: That thou mayest regard discretion, and that thy lips may keep knowledge. For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell. Lest thou shouldest ponder the path of life, her ways are moveable , that thou canst not know them. Hear me now therefore, O ye children, and depart not from the words of my mouth. Remove thy way far from her, and come not nigh the door of her house: Lest thou give thine honour unto others, and thy years unto the cruel: Lest strangers be filled with thy wealth; and thy labours be in the house of a stranger; And thou mourn at the last, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed, And say, How have I hated instruction, and my heart despised reproof; And have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined mine ear to them that instructed me!

It’s in the New Testament, too, made even more contemptible in the words of that wretched misogynist, Paul. Sex is bad, and your best bet is to avoid it altogether; if you can’t resist the wickedness, then and only then should you marry. Marriage isn’t as much about celebrating physical love as it is a voluntary act of quarantine, and the one outlet God allows you for venting your sinful urges.

1 Corinthians 7:1-2: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.

1 Corinthians 7:7-9: For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that. I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

The Catholic conception of Mary is another example of this strange aversion to sexuality: she was born immaculate, with no trace of the sin that the rest of us are supposedly all born with, and she was a perpetual virgin. That latter point is considered a virtue, rather than a lifelong frustration.

Now if you really want to annoy a good old patriarchal Christian, all you have to do is couple religion and sex…and this is one of the strangest consequences of their perverse association of sex with corruption. I think sex is absolutely wonderful and fun and, of course, very personal and intimate…what could be better PR for religion than to bring it together with good, healthy, loving sex? Except it doesn’t work that way. Good Christians were outraged at this magazine cover.

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That’s an absolutely fabulous Mary. I’d much rather worship her than that sterile, shriveled prude she’s always portrayed as.

Another shocker is to simply contemplate Jesus’ love life: many people ran home to bleach their brains at seeing this image on a poster. What? Jesus might have been gay? Unthinkable! He’s supposed to be sexless!

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And of course, they don’t feel any better about suggesting that maybe Jesus was a practicing heterosexual: that tripe Dan Brown wrote got a lot of mileage out of the offended Christians who protested over the fact that his story is about Jesus having children and descendants living into the modern day.

One odd effect this has had on me is that some religious opponents of my ‘militant’ atheism apparently believe the way to hurt me is to … send me porn! I’ve been subscribed to gay men’s magazines, I’ve had quite ordinary hardcore porn mailed to me (I’m actually more cautious about opening my office in public because I’ll sometimes find surprisingly explicit images sent to me, than I am at all concerned about bombs), and I’ve got a few DVDs lying around somewhere that I suspect are pretty raunchy — I don’t know because I haven’t watched them. I’m sorry to disappoint, but I’m not at all offended by that sort of thing…I’m more bothered by the fact that it is a waste of paper and has to be recycled than I am by sex or nudity.

I just find it so odd that people would think I might be offended by a photo of someone’s genitals.

Which brings us to the latest great sacrilege being perpetrated in the US: the Smut for Smut exchange. Students in San Antonio have been swapping pornography for religious texts in an entirely voluntary program. It’s controversial and it gets people upset.

I approve.

Not everyone does. Hemant thinks it’s a bad idea: it’s offensive, it denigrates religion, the people doing it are jerks, it makes atheists look bad. I disagree. If it’s not offending someone, sacrilege isn’t sacrilege — it’s not doing what it is supposed to do, which is to defy an invalid social norm. If everyone thinks that what you’re doing is nice and compatible with their superstitions, you aren’t going to make them think! And it worked.

The other part of this issue, though, seems to be taken for granted by everyone. If I trade you a photo of a man and woman having sex for your ragged old Bible, who has gotten the better deal? How does that denigrate religion, unless you’re assuming that sexuality is a sin, a corruption, a filthy offense to the gods? Hemant applauded the “Fiction for fiction”, which I agree is also an excellent idea…but what’s the difference? It seems to me that it simply skirted around one hot button for religion, sex; it’s a more tightly focused campaign, but I think the whole weird sexual self-loathing aspect of modern Christianity is also something worth highlighting.

Especially since atheism doesn’t have to be anti-sex, and neither does religion.

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Comments

  1. #1 PZ Myers
    March 7, 2010

    And would you believe that right after posting this, I went to check my email, and sitting right on top of the stack was a new message from the Gay DVD club. They had my selections waiting for me, and all I needed to do was click on the approval link, and Frat Piss 2 and The Skater Sex Chronicles would be on the way to me!

    I demurred.

    I am unperturbed by it, though, so whoever thinks it is clever to order this stuff should just not bother. All it means is that I add another address to my mail filters.

  2. #2 Kome
    March 7, 2010

    I’ll be in my bunk…

  3. #3 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    Heh, I posted a link to the smut for smut campaign in the previous incarnation of the endless thread. I think it’s great. Sex is better than violence any day, and if the bible is anything, it’s violent.

    What? Jesus might have been gay? Unthinkable! He’s supposed to be sexless!

    I never got that, the whole chaste Jesus business. It was my understanding that Jesus had to be made human, in order to understand all things human, especially all the temptations to sin, and all that. It always seemed to me that sex would have been a huge part of that, and Jesus had to have sex somewhere along the line. How could he understand it otherwise?

  4. #4 MAJeff, OM
    March 7, 2010

    Ah, sex. I think I remember that. I seem to recall that it was fun.

  5. #5 MAJeff, OM
    March 7, 2010

    I never got that, the whole chaste Jesus business. It was my understanding that Jesus had to be made human, in order to understand all things human, especially all the temptations to sin, and all that. It always seemed to me that sex would have been a huge part of that, and Jesus had to have sex somewhere along the line. How could he understand it otherwise?

    I can never make it work online like I can with my voice, but when you get a nice campy-lispy drag queen voice working on “this is my body….take…..eat….do this in remembrance of ME!” you can start to see the last supper as a big ol’ orgy.

  6. #6 jenbphillips
    March 7, 2010

    MAJeff, I seem to recall the sexed-up Jesus edition of Sunday Sacrelige you crafted while PZ was in the Galapagos. The funniest part of that was all the concern trolls who showed up in the comments crying that you were abusing your Minion privileges by posting such inflammatory smut. LOL.

  7. #7 MAJeff, OM
    March 7, 2010

    MAJeff, I seem to recall the sexed-up Jesus edition of Sunday Sacrelige you crafted while PZ was in the Galapagos. The funniest part of that was all the concern trolls who showed up in the comments crying that you were abusing your Minion privileges by posting such inflammatory smut. LOL.

    Yeah, I remember that too. I as gonna try to make some kind of vague reference to it.

  8. #8 Jon A
    March 7, 2010

    The Catholic Church is particularly bad at this whole denigration of sex thing. Its obsession with celibacy has been its undoing. Eventually I hope they will realise what the rest of us see as obvious. That it is not normal for men to choose celibacy as a way of life and these people are more often than not harbouring and hiding deep seated problems.

  9. #9 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    MAJeff, OM @ 5:

    I can never make it work online like I can with my voice, but when you get a nice campy-lispy drag queen voice working on “this is my body….take…..eat….do this in remembrance of ME!” you can start to see the last supper as a big ol’ orgy.

    That’s a hell of lot easier to imagine than the way christians like to paint it. :D

  10. #10 Randomfactor
    March 7, 2010

    I seem to recall that it was fun.

    A lot of trouble, though, if I recall correctly.

    Bishop Spong says that Paul’s motivations become a lot easier to understand if you realize he was quite possibly a closeted gay man, beset by the passions of the flesh.

    No wonder he spurned women.

  11. #11 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    JonA @ 8:

    That it is not normal for men to choose celibacy as a way of life

    You’re leaving out all those nuns. Also, for some people, it is natural to be celibate.

  12. #12 Jayaram
    March 7, 2010

    Whoa PZ! You lucky dog!!!

  13. #13 alopiasmag
    March 7, 2010

    “That’s an absolutely fabulous Mary. I’d much rather worship her than that sterile, shriveled prude she’s always portrayed as”

    Loved it. Very nice post and as always, very well said.

  14. #14 Kausik Datta
    March 7, 2010

    However, this abhorrence (and correspondingly morbid – I think rather prurient, too – fascination) with sex is not restricted to Christianity. Hindu religious mythology, for example, is replete with references to sex and sexual imagery. Certain forms of Hindu religious practices have having sex as an integral part of their rituals. Yet, in Hindu religion, sexual self-restraint (to the point of abnegation) is considered to be a virtue. Sex-based segregation is practised everywhere. To the fundamentalist Hindu, any reference to sex (even remotely, which includes public displays of affection) is anathema.

    To me, it seems that this puritanical attitude towards sex largely stems from misogyny, of which there is no dearth in the traditional Hindu (as well as Christian) society. After all, puritanism is the pervasive fear that somewhere, someone is having fun!

  15. #15 Smoggy Batzrubble OM4Jesus
    March 7, 2010

    Dear Atheists,

    As a born again Christian I can attest with divinely authorized certainty that rumpy-pumpy is Godly.

    How do I know this? Let me share my testomony with you:

    As an adolescent in the late seventies who got most of his sex education from encrusted Penthouse magazines, I used to take to heart the advice of the Alan Parson’s Project that “What goes up must come down / What must rise must fall”, and I did my best to set a world record for self-abuse.

    The high point of my masturbatory marathon was the Sunday I slipped out of Church twice within one hour to release to pressure in my throbbing gonads. As I labored in the water closet (trying to ignore the friction burns) various nubile young matrons in the church choir passed through my fevered brain, each one tied up and panting for me in various states of undress and wanton invitation. I swear on my Bible that God spoke directly to me that day, for upon the second time I returned to His house of worship, wrung out and a few million sperm lighter, the young women in the choir were singing:

    Out of my bondage,
    sorrow and night,
    Jesus, I cum! Jesus, I cum!

    That’s when I knew there really was a God, and that he had a marvelous plan for my life.

    Yours in Christurbation
    Smoggy Batzrubble
    Missionary to the atheists and reformed sheep rooter

  16. #16 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    March 7, 2010

    As someone who was raised Catholic, I can state categorically that the Blessed Virgin Mary was never naked under her clothes.

  17. #17 aratina cage of the OM
    March 7, 2010

    Jesus being gay is one of my all-time favorite blasphemies. It fits the character so well and has the benefit of pissing off the worst of the Christians—the homo-haters. Cheers for embedding the photo of the Rapture of Jesus (actually titled Judas Kiss).

    Also, I thought the Smut For Smut campaign was inspired when I first heard of it and am glad it was yet again a raving success.

  18. #18 sandiseattle
    March 7, 2010

    saw the “porn for bibles” nonesense on the regular tv news, thot it was a bit much.

  19. #19 'Tis Himself, OM
    March 7, 2010

    But teh sex is teh ebil. Ask the Pope or Ted Haggard. Then ask them how good religion is. While Benny and Rev “I’m completely heterosexual again” Ted will denounce each other’s religions, they’ll brag about how their cult is the goodest thing since before sliced bread. We have two undoubted experts who know that sex and religion are polar opposites.

  20. #20 Jon A
    March 7, 2010

    @Caine: I think that the number of men for whom celibacy is “natural” is far smaller than the number of Catholic priests. Perhaps priests leaving in their droves to get married is evidence of this. And the nuns don’t seem to get themselves into child sex scandals etc.

  21. #21 Cuttlefish, OM
    March 7, 2010

    PZ, you are wrong, wrong, wrong!

    “Sex” does not rhyme with “reflex”… at least, not with the noun “reflex”, and who uses the verb, anyway, when there are better options available? “Reflex” (the noun) would require a feminine rhyme (hey, I didn’t make up the terms), and you’d have to come up with a neologism to fit that bill.

    The church is upset about sex
    Cos we do it in ways too complex–
    She/she or he/he-sex
    They hate out of reflex,
    Cos God doesn’t work to those specs.

    In fact, if one only reflects
    Over why a believer objects
    Without some forms of reflex
    There just wouldn’t be sex
    And his doesn’t work, one suspects.

  22. #22 andrew.davison
    March 7, 2010

    Does that last image show what I think it does? A self-appointed god-man porking a young (definitely pre-adoloescent) girl?

  23. #23 jcmartz.myopenid.com
    March 7, 2010

    …it will get me in trouble with some atheists, even.

    Not with me.

  24. #24 cafeeine
    March 7, 2010

    @Jon A
    in addition, not all naturally celibate’ people will necessarily become priests. I would wager that without the feelings of guilt that come from repressing sexual urges, there is even less inclination to join the frock fraternity.

  25. #25 Zeno
    March 7, 2010

    I commented on this weirdo anti-sex fixation recently in a post about Inside the Vatican apologizing for a cover illustration that had the Virgin Mary showing just a hint of cleavage. Oh my, how some readers were offended by the magazine’s salacious cover art! (They ain’t seen nothin’ yet!)

    Religious boobies

  26. #26 Horse-Pheathers
    March 7, 2010

    Oh _course_ Jesus was gay. Why else were he and Judas making out in the park?

  27. #27 ckitching
    March 7, 2010

    I wonder if this control of sex in religion has something to do with the fact it’s one of the few basic instincts that can be repressed without severe consequences. While you can’t control when you get hungry, you can control when you eat, but if you never eat, you die. Similarly you cannot control when you get sleepy, but you can control when you sleep, but if you never sleep, you will pass out and sleep anyway. Likewise, with sex, you cannot control yourself from being aroused, but you can prevent yourself from having sex.

    If you associate something you have little control of with sinfulness, you have people feeling bad about something natural and rather uncontrollable. From there, it should not be hard to add additional restrictions and tell them that absolute faith is the only thing preventing them from committing these acts as well.

  28. #28 Multicellular
    March 7, 2010

    I got my masters degree at UTSA and I live only a few miles from the campus. I was a little unsure of the whole “smut for smut” until I watched the video. Now I’m totally fine with it. I teach biology at a local community college – I’d like to see more of the same at my college to counter the avid bible study group that meets every week.

  29. #29 dnebdal.myopenid.com
    March 7, 2010

    @andrew.davison, 22:

    Not necessarily, no? Hard to tell from the that angle, but she might just be physically smaller than him.

  30. #30 aratina cage of the OM
    March 7, 2010

    MAJeff, I seem to recall the sexed-up Jesus edition of Sunday Sacrelige you crafted while PZ was in the Galapagos.

    Oh yes, that was an excellent post (link to This is my body….take….).

    The funniest part of that was all the concern trolls who showed up in the comments crying that you were abusing your Minion privileges by posting such inflammatory smut. LOL.

    My, there was a lot of stupid in the thread. Mostly one person and a morpher it looks like, though.

  31. #31 boygenius
    March 7, 2010

    I recently helped a technophobic friend get his new laptop up and running (software installs, registrations, settings, etc.). When I finished, I set his desktop wallpaper to a rather eclectic collage of pornographic images (gay, scatological, fatties, grannies, bestiality- you name it). When I gave it back to him I told him his first exercise in learning how to drive his new computer was to figure out how to change the wallpaper.

    Oops.

    I was not prepared for his response. Geez, I’ve known the guy for 12 years and had no idea he was so sensitive. (He’s not at all religious.)

    *shrug*

  32. #32 Moggie
    March 7, 2010

    #17:

    Jesus being gay is one of my all-time favorite blasphemies. It fits the character so well and has the benefit of pissing off the worst of the Christians?the homo-haters. Cheers for embedding the photo of the Rapture of Jesus (actually titled Judas Kiss).

    You’re probably aware of a rather odd detail a few verses after the Judas kiss in Mark. When Jesus is arrested, an unnamed young man who was with him flees, naked. The Mar Saba letter, which refers to the ‘Secret Gospel of Mark’ and is strongly suggestive of homosexuality, may or may not be a forgery, but the naked dude is canon.

  33. #33 ThirdMonkey
    March 7, 2010

    You know, Jesus? I’ve been think alot about you lately and well… that’s why I wrote this song:

    I love you, Jesus.
    I want you to walk with me.
    I’ll take good care of you baby…
    I’ll call you my baby, baby…

    You died for my sins
    and you know that I’d die for you, right?
    What’s the matter, baby?
    You’re trembling, Jesus, baby!

    Your love, is my life.
    You know that with out you
    there’s a black hole in my life!

    Oh I want to believe.
    It’s all right,
    but I get lonely in the night
    and it’s up to you to save me!

    Jesus, baby…

    – Cartman as Faith + 1

    I want to get down on my knees
    and start pleasing Jesus.
    I want to feel his “love” all over my face…

    Thank God for South Park.

  34. #34 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    Horse-Pheathers @ 26:

    Oh _course_ Jesus was gay.

    Mmm, I think Jesus would have been bi-sexual at the very least. There’s a lot to human sexuality, so he would have had a lot of understanding to do. ;p

  35. #35 scooterKPFT
    March 7, 2010

    PZ @ #1, frat piss 2 sucks, not nearly enough piss.

    Well, you are correct, you have offended me. From the top.

    1. “Bacchanalia” the painting you posted. Everybody is just grinning and stumbling around, nobody even gets oral sex in that painting, and by the way, the kids those days, didn’t anybody fuck anymore? I guess I’m new fashioned.

    2. Virginia Maria on the cover of Playboy. There are some things that are hallowed, such as breasts, and there is such a thing as heresy, breast implants. Mother Mary has a cute kisser, but rubber tits? Is nothing sacred ?

    3. The Jesus and boyfriend painting. Why doesn’t Jesus take his hat off for steamy buttsex? Does everybody have to be some kinky version of a perverted Randy Newman Song? Why can’t people just fuck and not get all kinky with the halo hats, pierced nipples, Islamic barbed wire cock rings, and all that?

    4. The Fox News clip. The student hottie chick got Anime porn for whatever religious smut she brought in. What are these, Amway atheists?

    5. The painting of a Bootist pedophile getting cowgirled by a twelve year old. Doesn’t anybody fuck adults anymore? Actually I already know the answer to that question based on how much action I get.

    Pretty offensive stuff, I’m offended, my fantasy life is offended, I give this post a 1/4 erection rating, so even my wife is offended.

  36. #36 https://me.yahoo.com/a/x1CsKko.p.keyee5Rk.DLZd7ts9OdS.ilqZgGw--#2a28e
    March 7, 2010

    Um…er….How do I say this? If you just happen to get another email from Gay DVD club and you can’t figure out what do to with it, just in case it happens again, which I’m sure it won’t I know a certain person (not me) who lives at my email address (but not me) who might find a use for the email. BTW, it’s not for me.

  37. #37 MAJeff, OM
    March 7, 2010

    Um…er….How do I say this? If you just happen to get another email from Gay DVD club and you can’t figure out what do to with it, just in case it happens again, which I’m sure it won’t I know a certain person (not me) who lives at my email address (but not me) who might find a use for the email. BTW, it’s not for me.

    I live in North Dakota. If anyone is deserving, it is me….

  38. #38 dude070012
    March 7, 2010

    Posted by: PZ Myers | March 7, 2010 3:24 PM

    And would you believe that right after posting this, I went to check my email, and sitting right on top of the stack was a new message from the Gay DVD club. They had my selections waiting for me, and all I needed to do was click on the approval link, and Frat Piss 2 and The Skater Sex Chronicles would be on the way to me!

    I demurred.

    I am unperturbed by it, though, so whoever thinks it is clever to order this stuff should just not bother. All it means is that I add another address to my mail filters.

    Why don’t you put your porn to good use and give it to your local campus atheist group to propogate this trading with the same regulation.

  39. #39 PZ Myers
    March 7, 2010

    OK, I’ll save it for you. It comes in waves (har har), though: lately it’s just been the occasional het porn, sometimes it’s a run of gay stuff. Most of the gay material I get sent, though, is mainly about fashion. Now I know why gay men always look fabulous, but wouldn’t be caught dead racing at NASCAR…it’s their choice of reading material.

  40. #40 Smoggy Batzrubble OM4Jesus
    March 7, 2010

    For the record, Jesus has already explained his sexual orientation, lest there be any confusion.

  41. #41 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    MAJeff, OM @ 37:

    I live in North Dakota. If anyone is deserving, it is me….

    As I live in North Dakota too, I’ll back up MAJeff on this. Porn helps.

  42. #42 dude070012
    March 7, 2010

    DONT SEND TO MY EMAIL TRUST ME YOU DONT WANT TO! lolz

  43. #43 tbfoster
    March 7, 2010

    Once again I completely agree with you!

    On a serious note, looking at religion and christianity in the way Daniel Dennett does (e.g. as a solely human-developed culture to impose structure and morality on the masses at a time where very little was actually known about the world) it seems to me that the issue with sex might have originally been put in place to stop a population explosion of sorts.

    Some high up religious leader noticed that the production of food in their town/country was not increasing fast enough to match the increase in population, so they decided the quickest and most thorough way to slow down the population growth was to make sex evil, unless you’re married. So in this way they were actually trying to impose restrictions on -copulation- till later in life, not sex itself, but without adequate preventative methods back then sex -meant- copulation.

    So now that we have preventative methods the church should be altering (HA!) their views to say that only unprotected sex is a sin, unless you’re committed (e.g. through marriage or civil union), or you’ve had health checks and you want offspring. This would of course require them to analyse why the original proclamation that sex was evil was put in the bible in the first place and update it with the knowledge of today. Yeah that’ll happen.

    And unfortunately as most things in religion people have forgotten the possible original intent of the idea and all they do now is worship the ritual. Pathetic, to think something that might have actually helped us develop or protect us against destruction has turned in to something so useless.

    On a less serious note, maybe god just prefers to watch milfs have sex, so decided to make a rule that you have to marry first. That makes sense too. I mean, if you’re witness to every sexual act on earth ever then you should have a say on what the majority of those acts look like. Everyone, even god, has their preferred porn. I’m just surprised there wasn’t a decree in the bible requesting there to be a whip or handcuffs present.

  44. #44 howard.peirce
    March 7, 2010

    Andrew @ 22: It’s probably Shiva and Lakshmi, or one of their many mutual avatars. Don’t worry, she’s at least 18 . . . hundred years old.

  45. #45 Greta Christina
    March 7, 2010

    I think what I most like about Porn for Porn is that it kills two sacred cows with one stone. It smacks down the idea that the Bible is a sacred text that can’t be made fun of or treated as just another book (one that does have a whole lot of nasty sex in it)… AND it smacks down the idea that sex is bad and shameful and can’t be talked about openly.

    Plus it does a bang-up job of getting on the news.

    Good job, San Antonio atheists!

  46. #46 Randomfactor
    March 7, 2010

    For the record, Jesus has already explained his sexual orientation, lest there be any confusion.

    And there’s the admission of his dysfunction, in Rev 22:12…

  47. #47 howard.peirce
    March 7, 2010

    Me @ 44: I mean Vishnu and Lakshmi. Dang, now I’ve gone and offended the Hindus. Better stay away from trains for a while.

  48. #48 abb3w
    March 7, 2010

    PZ: We have an unfortunate cultural association between religion and sex.

    I hypothesize this is because religion is the primary tool used in human cultures to codify bridges across the IS-OUGHT divide one hand, and on the other because PURITY is one of the human flavors of ethics.

    The ethical flavor of PURITY seems to be concerned with identifying exponential growth hazards; disease hazards (such as untreated waste products) trigger disgust. However, population growth via sexual reproduction also seems to fall into the same category of exponential hazards: a population that grows exponentially outstrips the ability of the local ecology to support it, triggering collapse. (STDs overlap, since many impact fertility rates.)

    Since religion is the primary tool for expressing IS-OUGHT, it seems unsurprising that do/don’t proscriptions about sex would fall into religious PURITY prescriptions.

  49. #49 TWood
    March 7, 2010

    A long time ago (in a land far far away) I read an analysis about why the female is a negative in the modern religions. It went something along the lines that all earlier religions worshiped fertility and the only way to supplant those religions was to demonize fertility, and hence females and sex. The writer said that Satan is just a differently spelled version of Ishtar.

  50. #50 tbfoster
    March 7, 2010

    I now think that we’re all wrong, that our reality is just one of many set up by a host of omniscient and omnipresent beings as a 24/7 porn channel. Hell, enough of it goes on every second of every day and if they can see it all at the same moment, we’d be making someone HEAPS of godcash.

    Just think, images from our planet could be popping up in the inbox of a PZ-equivalent in another reality, just for speaking out against whatever anti-godsex regulations the religions the god-beings worship have been trying to enforce. I bet he’s shaking his head(s) too.

    And that still makes more sense then saying sex is evil.

  51. #51 Rutee, Shrieking Harpy of Dooooom
    March 7, 2010

    I thoroughly believe that the only reason the bible and torah are so anti woman is because the writers could never actually get the time of day from women.

  52. #52 aratina cage of the OM
    March 7, 2010

    Thanks Moggie and Smoggy for the links. I don’t remember if I ever knew about the Mar Saba letter or not, but it is fascinating and yet it makes me glad that I don’t care anymore about the True Interpretation™ of all that fictional nonsense.

  53. #53 Jon A
    March 7, 2010

    @Cafeeine: I wasn’t suggesting that all those with an inclination to celibacy should or would become priests, simply that for the Catholic Church to demand celibacy of priests in my opinion seems not to be a good idea in view of their currrent problems.

  54. #54 slimemold
    March 7, 2010

    It doesn’t seem like a fair trade to me.
    With the bible you have 1000 pages of smut that had stood the test of time.
    And what do you swap it for? A thin, sloddily produced, volume of garish photos.
    And with the Bible, you can have your Maker and beat it too.

  55. #55 Hugo Rune
    March 7, 2010

    YES!!! I fully approve of this post! After thousands of children raped by priests, millions of people dying of AIDS in Africa its fucking time to get the religionists to shut up about sex and sexual morals. Especially the hypocrite Catholics. I love this quote by Stephen Fry:

    It?s the strangest thing about this church, it is obsessed with sex, absolutely obsessed. Now they will say we ?with our permissive society and rude jokes are obsessed.? No, we have a healthy attitude. We like it, it?s fun, it?s jolly, because it?s a primary impulse it can be dangerous and dark and difficult. It?s a bit like food in that respect only even more exciting. The only people who are obsessed with food are anorexics and the morbidly obese and that in erotic terms is the Catholic church in a nutshell.

    They are perverts, plain and simple. To think that sex is a priori a bad thing, to think that total abstinence and self denial is better than to simply enjoy the most natural and simple pleasure a person can have is sick, disgusting and perverted. It needs to be rubbed in their faces in the strongest possible terms at every opportunity.

  56. #56 SaintStephen
    March 7, 2010

    Great post, PZ.

    Just a quick compliment from me this time, because although the topic is fascinating (mah fave-ritt even!), I need to get some fresh air after just now clogging up Jerry Coyne’s 2nd homeschooling thread with this impassioned soliloquy.

    (What. Shameful self-promotion? No, SHAMELESS self-promotion.)

    Some very interesting stuff on da intertoobs in the last few days! You simply astound me with your BLOGGING ENERGY, Professor Myers! Has there ever been a blogger so blessed so filled with The Holy Spirit so bereft of ritalin so incredibly capable, and continuously, alarmingly FAST?

    It makes me wee heart proud.

  57. #57 Azkyroth
    March 7, 2010

    I’m still trying to formulate exactly the right “technical virgin Mary” joke. >.>

  58. #58 terribletruthbeautifullie
    March 7, 2010

    Oh come, really. This far in and no-one has said it yet? Fine, I’ll do it.

    Sex is only dirty if you’re doing it right.

    That’s what the repressed religious mindset doesn’t get.

  59. #59 Anomic Entropy
    March 7, 2010

    @trichomoniasis #58

    “Sex is only dirty if you’re doing it right.”

    See, sometimes I wonder if religion appeals to many people because it makes sex taboo and therefore more exciting. *shrug*

  60. #60 stvs
    March 7, 2010

    Sacrilege and sex: an opportunity to educate people on the blasphemy of Mulholland Drive, in which the love scene between “Betty” and “Rita” is a sacrilegious representation of the Judas Kiss. Mulholland Drive is a film that should be in the library of every ?New Atheist.?

    How so? I hope you all don’t mind a detailed post supporting this claim.

    Mulholland Drive is ostensibly ?about? a man named ?Adam? who has made the wrong choice and is thrown out of his ?home? (Eden). Several characters step in to guide ?Adam? to make the correct choice, including a ?godfather? (get it?) and a ?Cowboy? who is subtly but unmistakably shown to be Christ Resurrected, the horseman of Revelation 19:21.

    Who is it that ?Adam? must choose? Camilla Rhodes?whose initials are Chi Rho??: Christ. Camilla is introduced to us in the movie after her execution is botched and her missing body is not found in what should be her tomb. After she has gone missing from her execution, ?Camilla Rhodes? (Christ) goes to ?Havenhurst? (heaven) where she meets its manager ?Coco Lenoix,? who is shown to be God (i.e., heaven?s manager) by a variety of rather obvious symbols. Betty Elms/Diane Selwyn represent Judas, complete with a Last Supper scene and the Judas kiss. Is the allegory not obvious enough for you yet? There is much, much more. Every scene of this film is an allegorical representation of Christianity. Many of the characters in Mulholland Drive are different aspects of the triune Christian God: Coco Lenoix, the ?godfather? Castigliane brothers, the ?Cowboy?, ?Camilla Rhodes?/Rita as the incarnate Jesus, the actor Woody Katz, the Jesus-lookalike Ed (also executed for his ?history of the world, in numbers?, i.e., the Bible), Mr. Roque, and, most blasphemously, the bum behind Winkies. Humorously, Coco Lenoix?s name comes from the popular French expression ā la noix de coco, which means devoid of value (sans valeur)?worthless, a prefigurement of the film?s judgment of God. Once you have this “key”, the clues all become immediately obvious: double entendre dialogue, birds of paradise, cowboy hats, apartment numbers, Christian images appearing at key times, t-shirts, and on and on.

    Adding all this up, there is a remarkable conclusion that cannot be missed: Mulholland Drive is by far the greatest blasphemy against the Christian God ever to appear in film. Of course, Lynch made use of concealed Christian allegory in Dune with the Christ-like Paul, complete with a scene reminiscent of the Adoration of Paul attended by giant worms. But the entirety of Mulholland Drive is concerned with a concealed allegory of the Christian Gospel with blasphemous implications.

    ?Adam? catches his wife in bed with a man sporting a serpent tattoo. Lynch uses many symbols to show that Adam?s hilltop garden-like home is, in fact, Eden, and that Adam?s wife is Eve, and that Gene the pool cleaner is the serpent. Adam is thrown out of his home?Eden. His wife calls him a ?bastard??Adam has no father?and says, ?damn you Adam!? Later, when a mobster comes looking for him and asks if the house is Adam?s, his wife says, ?like hell it is.? Adam drives to ?Cooky?s downtown??hell itself, as we are shown later by a signpost. Just as in Christian theology, ?Adam? is thrown out of his home in Eden and condemned to hell, unless Adam makes the right choice. Adam must choose Christ = ? = Chi Rho = Camilla Rhodes. When Adam does make this choice, we see that he is returned by a “judge” to his home in paradise in the presence of the triune God.

    While banished at ?Cooky?s?, Adam is advised to see the Cowboy by his caring assistant Cynthia. Simultaneously, a portrait of the Virgin overlooks Adam as Cynthia speaks. Cynthia is the Virgin Mary, Mother of God. Her jewelry and upraised finger indicate Her saintliness, as in a painting. When Cynthia?s overture to Adam to spend the night at her place is rebuffed, Cynthia says ?you don?t know what you?re missing.? Adam, indeed no man, has slept with the Virgin Mary, and hence all men, represented by Adam, are ignorant of this experience, which explains why Cynthia says that Adam?man? doesn?t ?know what [he?s] missing.? The blasphemous implication is that Mary is not a virgin by choice, and reminds us of Voltaire?s blasphemy that that God committed the crime of adultery with the Virgin Mary.

    Betty Elms/Diane Selwyn simultaneously represent Judas and all unbelievers. Betty Elms arrives onscreen with the declaration ?I can?t believe it!??damning skepticism that seals her fate from the beginning.

    Even the acting scene, performed twice, is allegorical of the Christian Gospel. But blackmail is the theme of this dialog, which is, as cited by skeptics and blasphemers such as Voltaire and Paine, the condition of Christianity: choose Christ or burn forever, the ultimate blackmail. Betty practices for a movie audition with Rita/Christ, who plays the role performed later by the actor Woody Katz. During the audition, Woody says ?I want to play this one close, Bob. Like it was with that girl, what?s her name, with the black hair. ? I was playin? off ?em. They say, ?They?ll arrest you?.? Woody is playing his role like the black-haired Rita?Jesus, who was arrested. After Woody summarizes the scene as ?Dad?s best friend goes to work,? the action starts:

    BETTY: You?re still here??
    WOODY: I came back.?
    BETTY: Nobody wants you here. ? My parents are right upstairs! They think you?ve left. ??
    BETTY: You?re playing a dangerous game here. If you?re trying to blackmail me ? it?s not going to work.
    ?WOODY: You know what I want ? it?s not that difficult.
    ?BETTY: Get out before I call my dad. He trusts you ? you?re his best friend. ? This will be the end of everything.
    ?WOODY: What about you? What?ll your dad think about you? ??
    BETTY: It?s like you said from the beginning ? if I tell them what happened, they?ll arrest you and put you in jail. Get out of here before ??Betty and Woody kiss?passionately.
    ?BETTY: I kill you.

    And just to drive home the point that Woody represents Jesus Christ, Lynch adds this dialog as Sarah James and Nicki take Betty to Adam?s film, that is predestined to star Camilla:?NICKI: How about that Woody Katz?

    SARAH: Oh god! ?
    ?SARAH: Now we want to ? introduce you to a director who?s a head above the rest.?He?s got a project that you would kill!

    Sarah and Nicki are Roman soldiers. In the Bible, the soldiers cast lots for Jesus? garments at His crucifixion. Sarah is a ?casting agent.? She leaves the set with the words ?I?m sure you all have a lot to talk about.?

    But Mulholland Drive at its most blasphemous is not its outward story of a love affair gone horribly wrong, but its allegorical portrayal of the Gospel account of God?s love for man, represented ultimately by the bum behind Winkie’s. In the exchange between Dan and Herb over breakfast at Winkie?s, Dan says he wishes ?to get rid of this god-awful feeling,? that we see a short time later is caused by a god-awful man. The entire film is about the source of Dan?s god-awful feeling: an awful God. Dan dies immediately upon seeing this God, causing Herb to exclaim ?My God!? The awful man ?that?s doing it,? the ?bum,? the ?beast,? the monster behind Winkie?s, is God. The ?bum? behind Winkie?s is also the wicked witch of the west, as evidenced by their nearly identical appearance, gender, and the numerous Wizard of Oz references used at Winkie?s, especially the broom. Therefore, the Christian God of western civilization is portrayed in a veiled manner as the wicked witch of the west (get it?!). In the book the Wizard of Oz, Winkies are little people living in the West, green pillars appear outside both the entrance to Winkies and the entrance to the Emerald City of Oz, the broom of the wicked witch of the west hangs near the ?bum,? a graffito is shown that says ?WEST COAST,? and the bum?s facial characteristics are very similar to the wicked witch of the west. So the bum is the wicked witch of the west. But again, the bum is a double entendre. All Lynch’s dialogue associates the bum with God, and Lynch even shows us a Christian cross and Virgin Mary graffiti as Herb and Dan walk to see the bum.

    In fact, Lynch himself links the bum with God in an interview with Chris Rodley:

    Q: Can you say something about the scariest: the horrible, blackened derelict behind Winkies??
    A: … I used to go there [Denny?s on Sunset Boulevard] and have breakfast … Behind me there were three people and they were talking about God. (Lynch on Lynch, p. 277)

    In the final sequence we see a living Diane die and putrefy in her bed after the Cowboy enters her room and says ?Hey pretty girl, time to wake up.? Diane doesn?t wake up and accept God, and her reward is death. That is why the Cowboy looks upon Diane?s rotting corpse impassively, then closes the door?she didn?t heed his directive, so he killed her, just like he will kill all those who reject Him. As indicated by the calla lilies that Adam passes on his way out of Eden, man?s fate is old age, decrepitude, and death. These are the monsters that God releases from His dumpster behind Winkie?s. Diane?s only two options are to wait for these demons to destroy her, or to destroy herself?the Bum?s design is achieved either way.

    Take the dinner party at Adam?s. The dinner party is the Last Supper, at which Jesus announces that one of His disciples, one who is eating with Him, will betray Him. The Last Supper is indicated to us by the long table with a white tablecloth, the plain settings and mostly unseen servings, the glasses, and the empty plates with solid dark borders, as represented in paintings of this event. The long, stylized kiss is the Judas Kiss, which is shown to cause a psychological break in Diane and leads to her betrayal and execution of Camilla, just as the same kiss in the Gospels leads to Jesus? execution. Adam?s mother Coco, Coco Lenoix from the previous dream sequence, is shown in close-up taking a walnut??noix? means nut in French. Walnuts are known as ?a nut fit for the gods? and their Latin name is derived from ?Jupiter?s nuts,? another indication that Coco is God.

    When the ?Cowboy? threatens Adam (making an appearance right after Lynch shows us a raised skull and flickering light, symbolizing “the resurrection and the light”), the Cowboy says cryptically, ?Now, you will see me one more time if you do good. You will see me two more times if you do bad.? This prophesy makes no rational sense within the immediate, surrealist narrative, but it makes perfect sense within the concealed Gospel narrative. In Christian theology, a jealous God tells man that he must worship Jesus and have no other gods before Him. If man obeys, he will be rewarded with eternal life in heaven. After He was crucified and rose from the dead, Jesus will return again to earth and take all believers to heaven with him. After that, Revelation 19:11?21 tells us that a ?rider on a white horse? will wage war and destroy the remaining unbelievers: ?The rest of them were killed with the sword that came out of the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh? (Revelation 19:21). The Cowboy is the horse rider of Revelation 19:21. The Cowboy is the Christian God. If Adam chooses correctly, he will see the Cowboy ?one more time? when Christ returns, then will be taken to heaven. If Adam does not choose correctly, he will see the Cowboy again, riding on his ?white horse,? who will kill him. In the book of Revelation, this rider and His Judgment appear after the seven seals are broken. The seventh seal (Revelation 8:1) is silence in heaven?Silencio.

    The love scene between Betty and Rita is another representation of the Judas kiss. After their sexual encounter, Rita takes Betty to ?Club Silencio? downtown, emceed by Cooky, i.e., hell, as indicated by the signpost. Consistent with the Apostles? Creed, Jesus descended into hell after his crucifixion, itself preceded by Judas?s kiss. Betty and Rita watch a satanic magician who tells them that the performances they witness are unreal illusions, and creates a thunderbolt, lightning, and an earthquake, just as in Ingmar Bergman?s film The Seventh Seal. In Revelation 16:17?18, the final, seventh ?bowl? judgment is released upon earth?thunder, lightning, and a great earthquake, which, according to Millenialists, prepares the way for Christ?s second coming in Revelation 19:1?16 and the battle of Armageddon in Revelation 19:17?20. Rebekah del Rio then sings the Roy Orbison song ?Crying? in Spanish, and, like Mary, sheds tears for Christ. After Camilla is murdered but before Diane kills herself, before, like Judas, she ?fell headlong? and ?burst asunder? (Acts 1:18), she reminisces despairingly by the cross formed by the frame of the third window beneath the shade, and waits for her coffee. It?s time to wake up. A resurrected Camilla appears standing next to a cross formed in another window, and Diane joyfully proclaims ?Camilla, you?ve come back,? until her painful realization a moment later that this is an illusion.

    Lynch uses the scene of Ed’s execution to show that God responsible for Jesus’ execution, a view expressed by skeptics such as Voltaire and Thomas Paine. This scene appears to be inexplicable red herring, but strongly supports the Gospel narrative. The hitman Joe murders Ed, who suggestively shares the same popular appearance as Jesus. Joe gazes happily upwards and says that he ?is doing some stuff for this guy.? He wears a Union Jack?a cross?on his chest like a crusader. Therefore, ?this guy? on whose behalf Joe acts is the Christian God. Joe is a crusading soldier of God, dispensing God?s justice, such as it is. While laughing at ?an accident like that,? God?s crusading hitman asks ?who could have foreseen that?? God?that?s who. This reinforces the view that Lynch?s intent is to portray God as a murderous tyrant who contracts man to murder His own Son. The longhaired victim Ed represents Jesus. We find in the 2d part of the film that the hitman is contracted to kill Camilla (Jesus), implying that Ed?s (Jesus?) ?funny story? gets Him into ?trouble,? just as Joe says. Like the living Jesus, Ed is also simply a man. The hitman takes Ed?s ?history of the world in numbers??the Bible is the history of the world in numbers. Moreover, in the book of Numbers, God commands the Israelites to sacrifice lambs ?without blemish? for Him on Passover, just as Joe sacrifices Ed?Christ. Later, Joe asks a prostitute the whereabouts of the movie star Camilla, a strange question unless Camilla is actually Jesus, who consorted with prostitutes.

    Mulholland Drive contains many undisguised allusions to great films from the pantheon. It tells story of a failed actress first through her eyes, then ours, and begins and ends?as does its film-on-film predecessor Sunset Boulevard?with the testimony of the victim?s corpse. And as with Jean-Luc Godard?s film-on-film Contempt, the final word is ?Silencio.? Lynch adapts many key ingredients from Contempt: a doomed relationship with a beautiful, contemptuous, bewigged and betoweled Camilla/e, her severe head injury in a spectacular and highly stylized automobile accident, the vivid use of red and blue to indicate the director?s purpose, an actress?s pop singing audition, and most important, Contempt?s principal theme of ?the fight against the gods.? Significantly for both Contempt and Mulholland Drive, the director Fritz Lang, played as himself, explains through Hölderlin?s poem ?The Poet?s Vocation? (poetry-on-poetry) that Man is saved not through God?s presence, but His absence. Invoking a film expressing nearly open scorn for unseen god-like authority, Lynch makes numerous references to The Wizard of Oz, as well as to The Godfather, whose film-on-film sequence demonstrates the punishment for refusing to accept the Godfather?s authority?a corpse in a bed. Like Contempt, Lynch?s theme is about ?the fight against the gods,? or rather, the fight against the Christian God.

    There is much more to be said, especially about the significance of Lynch’s prominent use of the portrait of Beatrice Cenci (who was beheaded for the murder of her father by an iron spike hammered through his head) and Lynch’s themes of gruesome and violent head injuries (Eraserhead, Blue Velvet, Wild at Heart, Lost Highway). But Mulholland Drive is most definitely not a disjointed series of scenes. The surrealist filmmaker David Lynch has far surpassed his predecessors Luis Buņuel and all others in making the most blasphemous, anti-Christian film of all time. And the blasphemy is so well concealed that hardly any one caught it. David Lynch is a genius.

    I’ll leave it for others more to decide how Lynch’s accomplishment fits within the history of art and cinema, but from where I sit, Mulholland Drive should be much more widely appreciated than it is, even within the elite world of criticism that has already embraced a fraction of what it knows of this uniquely important film.

  61. #61 raven
    March 7, 2010

    Matthew 19:NIV:

    10The disciples said to him, “If this is the situation between a husband and wife, it is better not to marry.”

    11Jesus replied, “Not everyone can accept this word, but only those to whom it has been given. 12For some are eunuchs because they were born that way; others were made that way by men; and others have renounced marriage[c]because of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.”

    According to jesus, one should get castrated if,
    “The one who can accept this should accept it.” That will stop all that evil sex.

    The fundie literalists are a bunch of hypocrits. They never bother to neuter themselves.

    Matthew 19:KJV

    11But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given.

    12For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

    This shows how inerrant the bible really is. When the fundies see something really wacko, they just rewrite it. The NIV is a fundie translation. They tried to obscure jesus’s advice to castrate yourself. Bunch of liars and hypocrits.

    Origen, an early xian theologian did that.

  62. #62 tbfoster
    March 7, 2010

    @abb3w #48

    Yup, similar to my #43 except you’ve worded it better and included the obvious point of stds.

    @saintstephen #56

    Haven’t you heard, Ritalin might actually boost learning by increasing brain plasticity. Those lucky misdiagnosed kids!

  63. #63 CalGeorge
    March 7, 2010

    Should have called the campaign “Your Smut for More Smut.” We all know Christians consume porn – they are no different than the rest of the population – so giving them a free extra helping isn’t going to have much of an effect.

  64. #64 MadScientist
    March 7, 2010

    It’s not only sex of course, christianity and mohammedanism have similar answers to other issues (and things which should be non-issues as well): ‘recreational’ drugs: prohibit them and turn the trade into a multi-billion dollar industry backed by violence. Homosexuals: kill ‘em. International terrorists: they’re divinely inspired. Come to think of it, religion also drove (and drives) many domestic terrorist groups such as the ‘real IRA’. It all works well for political purposes though – why should people question the extravagant expenditures of their rulers and the rulers’ clear support for a master class when they have more important things to worry about like drugs and muslim terrorists? Oh, and teh gayz – how could I forget them – they’re obviously the largest threat the world has ever faced.

  65. #65 alysonmiers
    March 7, 2010

    That’s an absolutely fabulous Mary. I’d much rather worship her than that sterile, shriveled prude she’s always portrayed as.

    I must respectfully disagree here, PZ. The cover model looks like she’s made of plastic. Cute, sure, but not very touchable.

  66. #66 sunioc
    March 7, 2010

    My new mission in life will be to become a famous atheist blogger, so that people will mail me free porn.

  67. #67 elzoog
    March 7, 2010

    Maybe PZ Meyers, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens should get together and share the best porn they got for free by being atheists.

    Better yet, advertise. Want a good way to get free porn? Become a famous atheist.

  68. #68 scooterKPFT
    March 7, 2010

    @ # 60

    I was just going to post that, but you stole the words right out of the gaping hole in my face surrounded by lips.

  69. #69 Ol'Greg
    March 7, 2010

    Haha! And here I was afraid all the sex talk would be over when I returned home…

    silly silly me.

  70. #70 arachnophilia
    March 7, 2010

    in proverbs 5, the emphasis is probably on “strange,” as in foreign.

    this is not to deny that the old testament has it’s share of anti-sexual and misogynistic content. on the contrary, the old testament is rife with the stuff, and books like song of songs are by far the exception. just that there is quite a gamut of opinions represented in the bible on the subject, and that for the OT authors, xenophobia was much more of a concern. misogyny was just an assumed fact of life.

    and much of the misogyny that did exist, at least in the text, was largely motivated by this xenophobia. it was other countries and their fertility cults that were particularly threatening to the isolationist, yahwist authors of the bible.

  71. #71 Benjamin Geiger
    March 7, 2010

    #60: tl;dr (j/k!)

  72. #72 cexcells
    March 7, 2010

    I remember Mary as being anally retentive, she would only allow anal sex in order to retain her true virginity.

  73. #73 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawnZyFfKb0qWYyoGaY7BIk8-6EJnV6twwSM
    March 7, 2010

    I’m not all that fussed with Frat Piss 2, but if there is a copy of the Skater Sex Chronicles going spare, I could give it a good and very appreciative home…

  74. #74 amphiox
    March 7, 2010

    I’m more bothered by the fact that it is a waste of paper and has to be recycled than I am by sex or nudity.

    Is this wise, PZ? You’re pulling a Sampson here and telling Delilah about the hair. You might have reinforce your mailbox now in preparation for the tons and tons of blank photocopy paper you’re about to get flooded with.

    (Or is this deliberate? Is the doomsday machine in the basement running short of cellulose?)

  75. #75 Quotidian Torture
    March 7, 2010

    That it is not normal for men to choose celibacy as a way of life

    I know a few asexuals who might object, PZ. I think you might instead say something like: “It’s not normal for people to repress natural sexual desire.”

    But I’m just nitpicking. I rather liked the rest.

  76. #76 Sisyphus
    March 7, 2010

    I have to admit I was offended by the “Smut for Smut” campaign. Simply because I think it’s unhealthy and offensive to equate sex with something as nasty and disgusting as religion.

  77. #77 broboxley
    March 7, 2010

    it was paul that is the flaming gay in the bible jesus was the one who hung out with the hookers and drunks

  78. #78 Kamaka
    March 7, 2010

    PZ, the blasphemy posts have been very good. Nice work.

    While I’ve been reading this, I have an “Antony and tha Johnsons” CD playing. Antony is an amazing singer, the depth of of emotion ‘he’ conveys through his voice is, well, amazing.

    His cross-dress persona is appropriate for sacriledge Sunday, certain to offend the faint of heart.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_6_23?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=antony+and+the+johnsons+the+crying+light&sprefix=Antony+and+the+Johnsons

  79. #79 Rorschach
    March 7, 2010

    I like the smut for smut campaign, because it is such a nice temptation for the xtians…:-) But I guess if you’re a college student with raging hormones, it’s not really a contest !

    We all know that Utah has the highest number of internet porn users.

    We’ve all heard of Paul Begala’s quote “Catholics are taught that sex is a dirty, vile, disgusting act that you save for the one you truly love.” Tells you all you need to know, really.

    Love the campaign !!

  80. #80 Grewgills
    March 7, 2010

    I am curious how many Bibles turned up missing from local hotels.

  81. #81 stvs
    March 7, 2010

    #71, #60: tl;dr (j/k!)

    omfg

  82. #82 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 7, 2010

    I am curious how many Bibles turned up missing from local hotels.

    Doesn’t matter. And the bible shouldn’t be in hotels in the first place, not without every other holy book too.

  83. #83 broboxley
    March 7, 2010

    @82 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    hotels can put anything they want into a hotel room. Most hotels provide porn on request, does that allow the religious to require that it be removed?

    you dont want a copy of a gideons place it outside the door. Wash yer hands, done.

  84. #84 Kamaka
    March 7, 2010

    the bible shouldn’t be in hotels in the first place

    Umm, yah, it is our social duty to do something about that, yes?

    OK, I admit it, I trash every bible, jebus magazine, tract and pamphlet I come across.

  85. #85 Kamaka
    March 7, 2010

    Oh, and if someone hands me a pamphlet on the street, I ask if I can have a few more for my friends.

    ‘Coz my friends would want to tear them up, too.

    They go *apoplectic*.

  86. #86 Pierce R. Butler
    March 7, 2010

    Sacrilege? Did someone say Sacrilege?

    There’s a lovely set of hymns for all sorts of sackers being sung over at Making Light.

  87. #87 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 7, 2010

    I found where stvs first posted that screed. It is from Roger Ebert’s Sun-Times site and it is just as out of place there.

  88. #88 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 7, 2010

    does that allow the religious to require that it be removed?

    Zip, there goes the point over your head. If they supply porn on request, why not holy books upon request? If they leave one holy book in the room, there should be all holy books in the room. That is called being good innkeepers. I vote for available upon request, as the bookcase would have to be rather big.

  89. #89 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    Janine, MOFMA, OM @ 87:

    It is from Roger Ebert’s Sun-Times site and it is just as out of place there.

    Eesh. That monstrous wall of text is out of place everywhere, I suspect.

  90. #90 drowsy-poppy
    March 7, 2010

    You have free porn that you don’t want and is just going to waste? Clearly, the solution is ebay.

  91. #91 Lola
    March 7, 2010

    I find it so exhausting to know that the “religious” are still in such great numbers worldwide. How can we have evolved this far and still have people who believe in fairy tales voluntarily? It is such a waste of a life; life is show short, why would you spend it that way?

  92. #92 Rorschach
    March 7, 2010

    How can we have evolved this far and still have people who believe in fairy tales voluntarily?

    Well, I wouldn’t call childhood indoctrination exactly “voluntarily” , but I get your point…:-)

  93. #93 Newfie
    March 7, 2010

    It is such a waste of a life; life is show short, why would you spend it that way?

    they believe in an afterlife

  94. #94 qbsmd
    March 7, 2010

    I’m more bothered by the fact that it is a waste of paper and has to be recycled than I am by sex or nudity.

    Has it occurred to you to donate it to a group willing to repeat this? It would be a more efficient form of recycling, and you have to appreciate the irony of using the resources of the people you offend to further offend them.

  95. #95 John Morales
    March 7, 2010

    qbsmd, nice one.

  96. #96 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 7, 2010

    qbsmd, nice one.

    Amen Brother…

  97. #97 ermine
    March 7, 2010

    Does that last image show what I think it does? A self-appointed god-man porking a young (definitely pre-adolescent) girl?

    I think you should worry more about what YOU see than what’s actually in the image. Unless she’s got the Bubonic Plague, I think that those round things under her arms -should- tell you that she doesn’t exactly fit the criteria for PRE-adolescent. ;)

  98. #98 John Morales
    March 7, 2010
  99. #99 Daks
    March 7, 2010

    Jesus was a rent boy – go figure

    http://failblog.org/2010/03/07/lease-fail/

  100. #100 TJ Hanlon
    March 7, 2010

    kamaka wrote:
    the bible shouldn’t be in hotels in the first place
    Umm, yah, it is our social duty to do something about that, yes?
    OK, I admit it, I trash every bible, jebus magazine, tract and pamphlet I come across.”
    ~~~

    Penn and Teller had a great idea in their book, “How to PLay in Traffic” – Page 39, they offer a decent card trick to be done with a Gideon Bible. Pick up the book. Seriously.

  101. #101 Bunkie
    March 7, 2010

    My two favorite birds are the titmouse and the boobie. What a pair!

  102. #102 Maldoror
    March 7, 2010

    A lovely scene with that fatal mixture of Christ and sex – the infamous censored “Rape of Christ” sequence from Ken Russell’s The Devils (1971)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3BiW3fLc2U

  103. #103 PZ Myers
    March 7, 2010

    I think that’s a preview of the Pharyngufest that will occur in Melbourne this week.

    I call dibs on the Oliver Reed role.

  104. #104 DLC
    March 7, 2010

    Enough of your Dirty, Evil Beastly Sex!
    Fornication, I say, Fornication!

    “I have here in my pocket – and thank heaven you can’t see them – lewd, dirty, obscene, and I’m ashamed to say this: French postcards. They were sold to me in front of your own innocent high school by a man with a black beard… a foreigner. ”
    — Elmer Gantry

  105. #105 rchgn168
    March 7, 2010

    Freud would have loved to analyze this site. You all need counseling. Were you beaten as children? Did your mom spank you? At best you are simply angry, sad immature individuals. What is dangerous is that your ignorance, hatred and intolerance is shrouded in your self described academic enlightenment (why is it that atheism and hatred go together…Stalin, Chairman Mao, Communist Cambodia are tremendous examples of governments “enlightened” by socialism and driven to eliminate spirituality and religion. You guys keep bringing up the crusades/Christian violence as an example of your own enlightened superiority when you have quite the history of your own–where is the intellectual integrity in that?). You folks ejaculate all over your keyboards as you excitedly attack your third grade sunday school teachers and fringe evangelicals. However, when the implications of your beliefs spill out of the test tubes and research labs and are encountered in the real world you are no where to be found. NO one has realized this more than one of your own, James Watson. He simply states the obvious when it comes to evolution and intelligence and the scientific community turns there back. Where were you to defend him? Why are you not highlighting the obvious evolutionary reasons we should let Haitians be on their own? Why in the world would we even be interested in combating AIDS, especially the epidemic in Africa? YOu certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago. Come on folks!! Lets see you publish these thoughts in another venue. You might want to leave out the frequent use of the “f-enheimer” (bad word that starts with F) when you come out to the light of day. I have not been exposed to such vulgarity since i spent time in a football locker room–you should be so proud. You guys sound so brilliant when you throw those expletives around. I cant remember the last time I saw the “F-enheimer” in Nature magazine. Oh but alas. I forgot. You might not be aware of the more mainstream academic publications. The namesake on this blog has not had a decent academic publication in quite some time (it might be somewhat complementary to call the last one decent but I will give you the benefit of the doubt–you must be quite good since the number of evolutionary biologists in Morris MN keeps you on the cutting edge). I would suggest you all grow up. I would also suggest you read a book called “The reason for God” by Timothy Keller. You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity provide a bit more to ponder than your third grade sunday school teacher.

  106. #106 badgersdaughter
    March 7, 2010

    OK, I admit it, I trash every bible, jebus magazine, tract and pamphlet I come across.

    I go on a lot of business trips to oil industry locations in the United States. They tend to be in Bible Belt or otherwise religious trending locations. I usually stay in budget business-traveler type hotels (I’m a Jew, and my boss is a Scot, and we can tear a penny in half by each of us holding on to its two sides, we say and laugh like maniacs and scandalize Human Resources). But these hotels always, always have Gideon rubbish in the drawer. For a while I just unceremoniously chunked it in the bin. The maids would fish it out and put it back in the drawer. Then I dumped it in the trash next to the toilet and used the trash bin for… toilet articles. I would sometimes be supplied a new one. (Passive-aggressive bitches, those West Texas maids.) Finally, in Dallas, I stopped by the local Barnes and Noble and supplied myself with Aleister Crowley’s Book of Lies. I dumped the Bible again and carefully placed the Crowley crap in the drawer in its place. The desk clerk was a bit freaked out by this and asked me timorously the next morning if I was really into “that stuff.” My room was not cleaned for the remainder of my stay and the maids left towels and stuff on a room service tray outside my door. Next time I went to Dallas I picked a different damn hotel.

  107. #107 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    rchgn168 @ 105:

    You folks ejaculate all over your keyboards as you excitedly attack

    Seems to me, you’re the excited one. Ever heard of paragraphs? If you’re going to attempt to chastise us anymore, try them. It makes going through the same old, same old crap a bit easier.

  108. #108 badgersdaughter
    March 7, 2010

    Commenter runs to make the microwave popcorn and pee quick so she doesn’t have to get up while rchgn168 gets schooled…

  109. #109 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 7, 2010

    Hey rchgn168, how about some conclusive hard physical evidence for your imaginary deity, and hard physical evidence that your babble isn’t a work of myth/fiction. Then come back with evidence, not attitude.

    I would suggest you all grow up.

    I have an AARP card, and suggest you grow up intellectually.

    The reason for God

    There is no reason for belief in imaginary objects, except by delusional fools. If your deity isn’t imaginary, there should be some nice physical evidence like an eternally burning bush you can present.

  110. #110 Katrina
    March 7, 2010

    Oh, man, why does it always get interesting when I have to leave the computer for a while?

  111. #111 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    overly excited rchgn168:

    YOu certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago.

    Wrong. No, you’re not just wrong, you’re fucking wrong. Homosexuality can be genetic in origin, just as heterosexuality can be genetic in origin. Ya see, just because homosexuality might be genetic doesn’t mean every single human, past, present and future, will be homosexual. There will still be plenty of breeding going on.

    You guys keep bringing up the crusades/Christian violence as an example of your own enlightened superiority when you have quite the history of your own

    Was it all the sex talk that got you onto yakking about violence? Sex is better. Your god, ol’ psychotic Yahweh, was quite the kinky fellow.

    You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity

    You’ve definitely ruled yourself out. “Intellectuals of christianity” have nothing to say except the same old crap. If you have proof (read: evidence) of your god, step up to the plate. If not, shut the fuck up.

  112. #112 Ol'Greg
    March 7, 2010

    You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity provide a bit more to ponder than your third grade sunday school teacher.

    But why would I care?

  113. #113 Ol'Greg
    March 7, 2010

    YOu certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago.

    By this logic infertility, any genetic disorder that causes infertility, and any genetic disorder that causes death before sexual maturity couldn’t be genetic either.

    Something can be genetic, and continue to pass on in a population, without the actual individuals expressing those gene reproducing.

    Harlequin ichthyosis is genetic. Few born with it survive infancy. It’s still genetic and it still happens. Even though those born with the disease almost never reproduce.

  114. #114 tuckerch
    March 7, 2010

    Has anyone brought up that it seems rather out of character that all these christians who send PZ gay scat porn actually KNOW about gay scat porn and know where to find it on the Internet?

    Or am I innocent of some facets of christianity?

  115. #115 badgersdaughter
    March 7, 2010

    rchgn168, just curious here. Did you actually think you would change hearts and minds by posting that comment, or did you just stop by to shit on the living room carpet?

  116. #116 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    tuckerch # 114:

    Or am I innocent of some facets of christianity?

    Definitely innocent. Christians of various denominations are one of the largest blocks of porn consumers. Mind, they’re just checking to see how outraged they should be. Or something like that.

  117. #117 badgersdaughter
    March 7, 2010

    Or am I innocent of some facets of christianity?

    When I was a churchgoer, the most common excuse for exposing yourself to that sort of thing was “know thy enemy.”

    Of course, considering the source, many of them appear to have confused it with certain, shall we say, Biblical values of “know.”

  118. #118 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 7, 2010

    Mind, they’re just checking to see how outraged they should be.

    Except they are more likely to pay for it than us atheists. Utah leads the way in “pay for porn”…

  119. #119 martha
    March 7, 2010

    rchgn168: You seem to think that we worship evolution and should let it “do its job.” Like a Jehovah’s Witness, don’t mess with god’s work.

    Evolution is not godlike. Evolution is sloppy and full of errors. But where the religious sometimes do not appreciate tampering with god’s work, atheists feel free to do what we can to make things better for everyone.

  120. #120 Caine
    March 7, 2010

    Nerd of Redhead, OM @ 118:

    Except they are more likely to pay for it than us atheists. Utah leads the way in “pay for porn”…

    They’re just being thorough. ;p

  121. #121 Ol'Greg
    March 8, 2010

    You folks ejaculate all over your keyboards as you excitedly attack your third grade sunday school teachers and fringe evangelicals.

    Funny you should mention Freud…

    Why are you not highlighting the obvious evolutionary reasons we should let Haitians be on their own?

    Probably because there aren’t any unless you have a really limited understanding of evolution or a real tendency to conflate governmental and institutional development with evolutionary biology.

    I have not been exposed to such vulgarity since i spent time in a football locker room–you should be so proud.

    Fucking hell. What the fuck is it with these fuckers and the word fuck.

  122. #122 Jadehawk, OM
    March 8, 2010

    YOu certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago.

    oh yawn, someone who doesn’t understand genetics.

    see, despite what you may think, men and women are members of the same species, and as such, they have virtually the same genes. it’s why men have nipples, and women occasionally sprout facial hair; and why sometimes men prefer men, and women prefer women.

    add to that the evidence that female relatives of gay men seem to be more fertile, and it becomes evident that whatever is responsible for increased likelihood of gayness in men seems to be also responsible for increased number of babies in women, so it’s a gene (or set of genes) that seems to be abundantly transferred through the female line.

  123. #123 Zeno
    March 8, 2010

    You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity provide a bit more to ponder than your third grade sunday school teacher.

    Okay, I confess. That line gave me the giggles and it took me several seconds to regain my composure. One can, of course, be a “true intellectual” about many things: Whether Protestantism is better than Catholicism. (Probably, since it’s weaker.) Whether Picard is superior to Kirk. (Certainly more urbane.) Whether Batman is a true “super” hero in a technical sense. (Probably not, but Robin could probably shed some light.)

    Everyone is entitled to choose a hobby.

  124. #124 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    Ol’Greg @ 121:

    Fucking hell. What the fuck is it with these fuckers and the word fuck.

    They didn’t listen to enough George Fucking Carlin. Oh, and they are miserable fucking gits who want to make everyone else fucking miserable.

  125. #125 BigKnuckleDraggingJarhead
    March 8, 2010

    Now THAT was good timing, I recently made a mock “motivational poster” with a Bacchanalia painting at the top, with “Bacchanalia, Just another reason why Bacchus is better than Jesus” lol

    No, really, it’s at
    http://thewaronfaith.org/FSCartoons10.html

    I wonder if PZ’s mother dropped him on the same side of his head, as mine.

    Peace,

    Christopher

  126. #126 badgersdaughter
    March 8, 2010

    Freud would have loved to analyze why the idiot doesn’t give any other reasons than corporal punishment for why he thinks we are messed up. Curious lack of the usual sort of thing… mad at God, losers in love affairs, you know what I mean. Why spanking in particular, and that mentioned, lingeringly, twice?

    Also, that macho mention of the football team locker room immediately after the portion of his comment where he rants about homosexuality. Protests too much, you think?

  127. #127 WowbaggerOM
    March 8, 2010

    You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity provide a bit more to ponder than your third grade sunday school teacher.

    Which would be fine if adhering to Christianity was contingent upon understanding it on an intellectual level – however, if it did, you’d only number in the hundreds rather than the millions. All you need know to count yourself a Christian is be able to answer ‘yes’ to the question ‘are you a Christian?'; as a result the vast majority of Christians around the world know far less than most (if not all) of the atheists here on this site.

    Or am I innocent of some facets of christianity?

    Turds have facets?

  128. #128 Menyambal
    March 8, 2010

    Jadehawk, that was beautiful.

  129. #129 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 8, 2010

    Posted by: tuckerch| March 7, 2010 11:47 PM

    Has anyone brought up that it seems rather out of character that all these christians who send PZ gay scat porn actually KNOW about gay scat porn and know where to find it on the Internet?

    Or am I innocent of some facets of christianity?

    Funny you should say that. But I would not call innocent, the word I would use is ignorant. By all means, check out the Ugandan Baptist pastor, Martin Ssempa. He is one of the main supporter of the anti-LGBT bill in Uganda. He shows gay scat porn in churches to try to bolster his aim.

    Please, know of what you speak of the next time you toss about accusations. People just might think that you are a fool.

  130. #130 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    Janine, I didn’t take tuckerh’s comment to be an accusation, just rather boggled that christians would be sending PZ porn.

  131. #131 SaintStephen
    March 8, 2010

    @ rchgn168 #105:

    Listen up, dweezel.

    A paragraph break or two would be extra special. Have a little respect for the people willing to read your tripe. But the real problem here, is the fact that you have nothing new, or original, or even remotely interesting to say. People like you don’t deserve thoughtful and considered responses, because it’s obvious the top of your head is still a little soft, and you’re making gurgling noises like a newborn baby.

    So let’s deal with your written communication skills instead. You don’t deserve any better of a response. And simply put, your writing SUCKS. Here are a few kindergarten-level mistakes for you to ponder while you wallow in your ignorance:

    * “no where” — it’s nowhere, idiot.

    * “turns there back” — it’s turns their back, asswipe.

    * “I cant remember” — it’s I can’t remember, shithead.

    * “somewhat complementary” — it’s complimentary, you stupid bozo.

    * ““The reason for God”” — you should capitalize the word Reason in a book title, you insufferable twit.

    Your Mother should have swallowed you. Come back when you’ve learned better grammar, you miserable fuckwit.

  132. #132 Menyambal
    March 8, 2010

    rchgn168, there are many reasons to despise Christianity besides the crusades. There’s the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre, the murder of Hypatia, the Spanish Inquisition ….

  133. #133 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 8, 2010

    Caine, that fool did make an accusation. I just had to show that apple dumpling that christians can find gay scat porn. I would not be surprised to find that some of the people involved in making gay scat porn think of themselves as christians.

    Just because tuckerch cannot imagine christians acting in such a way does not make it true.

  134. #134 Krystalline Apostate
    March 8, 2010

    NO one has realized this more than one of your own, James Watson.

    No 1 speaks for all of us, lackwit.

    He simply states the obvious when it comes to evolution and intelligence and the scientific community turns there back.

    Anyone who thinks that skin color determines intelligence (an ill-defined concept @ best) is an asshole, I don’t care who he is or how many prestigious awards sit on his shelf, or what else he’s done.

    Where were you to defend him?

    Nobody should run to defend the indefensible.
    Just because you’re smart doesn’t mean you can’t be stupid.

  135. #135 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    Janine, true enough, and plenty of us corrected his/her mistaken notion.

  136. #136 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 8, 2010

    You folks ejaculate all over your keyboards as you excitedly attack your third grade sunday school teachers and fringe evangelicals.

    If only the likes of the Pope and James Dobson were only as powerful and effective as a sunday school teacher or a fringe evangelical.

  137. #137 WowbaggerOM
    March 8, 2010

    rchgn168, there are many reasons to despise Christianity besides the crusades.

    Heck, even if Christians did actually listen to the directives of the peace-loving man-god they claim to worship and not torture and butcher millions in his name, it wouldn’t change the fact that there are plenty of good reasons to – well, maybe not despise it, but certainly toss it aside as a waste of time.

    I’m not an atheist because so many Christians are deluded hypocrites; I’m an atheist because all the arguments for gods are depressingly uncompelling.

  138. #138 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    rchgn168 @ 105:

    NO one has realized this more than one of your own, James Watson. He simply states the obvious when it comes to evolution and intelligence and the scientific community turns there back.

    What James Watson realized was his own racism. I’m not going to defend racism no matter who holds the view. You seem to think science works like religion (no surprise there), which should make you realize how idiotic religion is at the core. No matter what ugliness spews forth from a christian, there’s a mindless chorus of “that’s right!”. Doesn’t work that way with rational thinking or science.

    When someone says something that is indefensible, they are called on it. Full stop.

  139. #139 Rorschach
    March 8, 2010

    Why are you not highlighting the obvious evolutionary reasons we should let Haitians be on their own?

    Sorry to disappoint your cartoonish worldview there.Wasn’t atheists who tried to steal a bus full of children to brainwash them either, IIRC.

    You guys keep bringing up the crusades/Christian violence as an example of your own enlightened superiority

    Uhm no, they usually come up as example of applied christian love during the centuries past.

    And btw, Freud would have needed about half a minute to figure you out, my little uninformed unhappy unsatisfied afraid-of-the-dark christian friend.

  140. #140 boygenius
    March 8, 2010

    I’m an atheist because all the arguments for gods are depressingly uncompelling.

    I’m sure it was just a slip-up on your part, but shouldn’t it be the Christians, etc. that are depressed over all of the uncompelling arguments for god(s)?

  141. #141 Usagichan
    March 8, 2010

    Menyambal #132

    I didn’t expect the Spanish Inquisition… but then nobody does!

    As for rchgn168 – if you are real (as in not a parody from someone portraying a laughable Xtian stereotype), you are missing the point – no-one denies that there are Atheists that do evil things – my main gripe with religion generally and Christianity in this particular example is that they make doing Evil into a virtue, and are in themselves bad for humanity in general.

    Still waiting for one of these religious crackpots to present some evidence…

  142. #142 SaintStephen
    March 8, 2010

    @ Krystalline Apostate #134:

    What’s up, Tai Chi Master?

    *Big smile*

    (We sat next to each other at BJ’s Restaurant in Cupertino, after PZ’s talk at De Anza College in January… remember? Great fun!)

  143. #143 Bride of Shrek OM
    March 8, 2010

    That idiot at #105

    YOu certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago

    ..there is so much wrong with that one sentence that I take it upon myself to reinstate an award that I devised about 3 years ago.

    Fittingly, given it’s Oscar night, I hereby award that idiot “Taint of the Year” .

  144. #144 Bride of Shrek OM
    March 8, 2010

    That idiot at #105

    You might want to leave out the frequent use of the “f-enheimer” (bad word that starts with F)

    Oh for fuck’s sake. That’s just plain childish.

  145. #145 Kel, OM
    March 8, 2010

    You certainly cannot defend homosexuality as genetic in origin since the effects on reproductive potential would have eliminated that gene about 300 million years ago.

    Do you honestly think it that simple?

  146. #146 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    Bride of Shrek OM @ 143:

    ..there is so much wrong with that one sentence

    I’m watching Futurama right now, The Sting. In that episode, Leela says “Your science can’t unprove that.” I think that pretty much sums up the christian twit’s arguments.

  147. #147 Kausik Datta
    March 8, 2010

    Come on! Close to 150 comments, and there is just ONE idiot religiot? Whatever happened to the horde of trolls who used to infest Pharyngula?

  148. #148 Rorschach
    March 8, 2010

    Whatever happened to the horde of trolls who used to infest Pharyngula?

    Looks like Jerry Coyne’s got them over at his place atm, it reads like a “best of xtian wingnuttery”…;)

  149. #149 WowbaggerOM
    March 8, 2010

    Boygenius wrote:

    I’m sure it was just a slip-up on your part, but shouldn’t it be the Christians, etc. that are depressed over all of the uncompelling arguments for god(s)?

    No, no slip-up. I wrote what I meant.

    I guess they should be even more depressed than I – but that doesn’t mean I’m not allowed to be depressed by how uncompelling the arguments are; it makes me miserable that so many humans spend their lives carrying around the stinking mental sack of garbage that is religion and using such pathetic rationalisations to justify it.

    Were there better arguments for religion then maybe I wouldn’t feel so bad – it’s slightly less embarrassing to get conned if it’s a good con.

  150. #150 Michael X
    March 8, 2010

    @105

    Stalin, Chairman Mao, Communist Cambodia are tremendous examples of governments “enlightened” by socialism

    Atheism is not socialism.

    and driven to eliminate spirituality and religion.

    Atheism does not proscribe. It is simply the label given to those who do not have a belief in a deity. Not believing in god doesn’t equal a proscription to eliminate religion, religion itself gives us good reasons for wanting its elimination.

    You guys keep bringing up the crusades/Christian violence as an example of your own enlightened superiority when you have quite the history of your own–where is the intellectual integrity in that?

    We give examples of the crusades not as examples of how great we are, but how evil Christianity is. Also, there has never been a mass murder perpetrated upon the ideals of atheism, because Atheism is not proscriptive.

  151. #151 Kobra
    March 8, 2010

    OMFG! They showed yaoi on Faux news! It was omega softcore, but it was still yaoi.

    This makes me happy on at least three different levels.

  152. #152 Kobra
    March 8, 2010

    @15: I almost snorted water out of my nose onto my laptop screen. Hilarious!

  153. #153 boygenius
    March 8, 2010

    Wowbagger #149;

    Ah. I see where you’re coming from and I guess I have to agree with you.

    Great. Now I’m depressed, too. :(

  154. #154 ergaster
    March 8, 2010

    I wish you’d stop saying “religion” when you mean “Christianity” or “The Abrahamic Religions” or “Religion in the West”.

    It’s not true that religion has a problem with sex. You indicate that at the very end of your article, but the rest of your article keeps takling about “religion”, and quoting the Bible only (what about the Quran, where women are seen as dirty too?). It’s true that Christianity and Islam do. To some degree it’s true of Buddhism, and a number of other religions of course.

    I’ve seen lots of temples in Southern India where the lower levels were covered with extremely realistic carvings depicting all sorts of orgies, including two men completely misunderstanding the phrase “riding a horse” (although there doesn’t seem to be any gay activity). These sort of temples of course were more common except that they’re often the sort of thing that gets torn down, smashed up, or rebuilt by invaders from other religions or whatever.

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions. Not all religions degrade women, not all religions believe in god(s), not all religions exert cultish control over their adherents.

    It’s obvious that when a religion (or a “real” cult) attempts to exert control over its adherents, it’s going to concentrate on their sex life. It’s also obvious that when a religion attempts to prescribe a set of moral rules, they have to include sexual rules. In pre-modern cultures, particularly ones in harsh environments and particularly in hunter-gatherer societies, it makes sense that there would have to be pretty strict sexual mores (where would a single mother be in a hunter-gatherer society which can’t afford too many children?) That’s good and proper, what’s silly is when people assert that cultural mores established in those sort of times are necessarily still relevant today.

    Interestingly though I think (Catholic) Christianity is the only religion that has a philosophical problem with sex *within* marriage, although I guess some sects within Buddhism/Hinduism may be a bit this way.

  155. #155 shonny
    March 8, 2010

    Posted by: MAJeff, OM Author Profile Page | March 7, 2010 3:34 PM

    Ah, sex. I think I remember that. I seem to recall that it was fun.

    Good, MAJeff, I thought I was the only one.
    But it has the advantage that the little head is not running my life anymore.

    Very positively remember it as a fun activity, though.

  156. #156 Caine
    March 8, 2010

    ergaster @ 154:

    I’ve seen lots of temples in Southern India

    Cruised right by #98, didn’t ya, in your eagerness to yak away.

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions.

    Oh so fucking wrong. Wrong, with a healthy dose of stupid. *yawn*

  157. #157 WowbaggerOM
    March 8, 2010

    ergaster #154 wrote:

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions.

    Except that every one of them is the product of human imagination. Which is kind of a biggie, don’t you think?

  158. #158 ergaster
    March 8, 2010

    re the porn for bibles thing … certainly someone somewhere can find some christian group whose mission it is to rid people of the scourge of looking at other people the way god made them by trading porn for bibles? all the geek atheists would like to see some sort of infinite regress there. I imagine it bringing down the postal system :-)

  159. #159 John Morales
    March 8, 2010

    ergaster:

    I wish you’d stop saying “religion” when you mean “Christianity” or “The Abrahamic Religions” or “Religion in the West”.
    It’s not true that religion has a problem with sex.

    Context. Read the intro again:
    What is one act that will turn many a respectable citizen of Western society into a gibbering denialist?
    Sex.
    We have an unfortunate cultural association between religion and sex.

    I’ve seen lots of temples in Southern India where the lower levels were covered with extremely realistic carvings depicting all sorts of orgies [...]

    I know. cf. #98.

    Interestingly though I think (Catholic) Christianity is the only religion that has a philosophical problem with sex *within* marriage [...]

    Funny enough, it was the Catholics who exterminated the Cathari, who took it to an extreme.

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions. Not all religions degrade women, not all religions believe in god(s), not all religions exert cultish control over their adherents.

    All religions have a supernatural component, else they’re only ideologies.

    As for “cultish control”, well… if one is an adherent, how is not adhering to religious strictures not being under the control of said religion?

  160. #160 ergaster
    March 8, 2010

    re the porn for bibles thing … certainly someone somewhere can find some christian group whose mission it is to rid people of the scourge of looking at other people the way god made them by trading porn for bibles? all the geek atheists would like to see some sort of infinite regress there. I imagine it bringing down the postal system :-)

  161. #161 John Morales
    March 8, 2010

    Um. Double negative error @#159.

    <blush>

  162. #162 raven
    March 8, 2010

    rchgn the fundie troll:

    Freud would have loved to analyze this site. You all need counseling. Were you beaten as children?

    Freud would have been bored with you. Another dumb fundie xian liar and hater for jesus.

    Nothing much happened to us. Most of us were xians. We got over it.

    You left out Hitler the Catholic and his millions of Catholic and Lutheran followers, the Taiping rebellion which killed 20 million, the Reformation wars which flickered on and off for 450 years and ended in 2000, a few other xian wars and massacres, and the current US problem with xian terrorists. Plus the fundie xian War on Science, the basis for 21st century civilization.

  163. #163 negentropyeater
    March 8, 2010

    there ya go :

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions. Not allMost religions degrade women, not allmost religions believe in god(s), not allmost religions exert cultish control over their adherents.

    Happy ?

  164. #164 herr doktor bimler
    March 8, 2010

    “Fiction for fiction”

    Shouldn’t that be “Friction for Fiction”?

  165. #165 negentropyeater
    March 8, 2010

    #105,

    check :

    . complains about ignorance, hatred and intolerance in an ignorant, hateful and intolerant way

    . atheism = socialism

    . excuses history of Christian violence because there is also non Christian violence

    . hateful racist statements

    . hateful homophobic statements

    . doesn’t understand basics of genetics and evolutionary biology

    . ignorant, incoherent, hateful, intolerant, childish comment

    why are they always so predictable ? Who wants to bet that rchgn168 is also an AGW denier ?

  166. #166 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawkE0K03lVGJDZ3_J0WD8HrdDbBKUPREm5c
    March 8, 2010

    For the twit at post 105… rchgn168

    http://deimos3.apple.com/WebObjects/Core.woa/Browse/itunes.stanford.edu.1291405182

    A set of lectures on the “Historical Jesus”

    If ya come back or can understand some of the big words, you might learn something about what your mongrel religion Xtianity is founded on…..pish, stuff and nonsense.

  167. #167 John Morales
    March 8, 2010

    [meta]

    It seems rchgn168 is a drive-by.

  168. #168 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawkE0K03lVGJDZ3_J0WD8HrdDbBKUPREm5c
    March 8, 2010

    Those lectures at the link on 166 on itunes are free by the way….in case anyone else here who would like a perusal having perhaps not already listened to them.

    ignorant amos

  169. #169 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawkE0K03lVGJDZ3_J0WD8HrdDbBKUPREm5c
    March 8, 2010

    Figures John….fire and retreat…the dickhead.

  170. #170 John Morales
    March 8, 2010

    [meta]

    @169, you need to tweak your Google account setting, to get your monicker user-friendly.

    Others have done it.

  171. #171 Cosmic Teapot
    March 8, 2010

    1. “Bacchanalia” the painting you posted. Everybody is just grinning and stumbling around, nobody even gets oral sex in that painting

    Maybe they are all married.

  172. #172 shonny
    March 8, 2010

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions. Not all religions degrade women, not all religions believe in god(s), not all religions exert cultish control over their adherents.

    There is one rather significant common denominator, though: They are ALL superstition!
    And claim to represent the truth by decree.

  173. #173 Ye Olde Blacksmith
    March 8, 2010

    Posted by: ergaster | March 8, 2010 3:48 AM

    There’s almost nothing you can generalise about religions.

    Sure you can. It is not even difficult.

    Not all religions degrade women,

    Perhaps in rare instances. I will concede that point.

    not all religions believe in god(s),

    It it doesn’t, is it really a religion?

    not all religions exert cultish control over their adherents.

    Name one.

    (On second thought, don’t name one, because then we’ll just get into an argument quibbling over the meanings of “cultish”.)

    All religion (yes, I’m being absolutist here :)) is about control. It puts strictures on almost every aspect of an adherents life (sex, food, education, hygiene, medicine, etc.) Some of those strictures may have had some basis of fact to prompt or reinforce them, but they all boil down to control.

  174. #174 shonny
    March 8, 2010

    While talking about sex &cetera:

    There was a young girl named Sapphire
    Who succumbed to her lover’s desire.
    She said, “I know it’s a sin,
    But now that it’s in,
    Could you shove it a few inches higher?”

    And I am completely innocent as to its origin.
    It is here http://www.anvari.org/ that also have this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKq6_vjrxMo

    Apologies if behind times, but not very sorry.

  175. #175 ConcernedJoe
    March 8, 2010

    shonny #172 (only because you mentioned it – not to pick on you – I understand you had a context and you were right within it)

    To me religion is anything:

    * that purports to have THE answers

    and

    * that attempts systematically via doctrine, dogma, and an organization around committed followers gather more followers and then control them (and often even innocent bystanders) according to their doctrine

    is a religion.

    For example implemented Communist dogma is a religion. And so is “the American Way” in some quarters.

    For something to be a religion no supernatural god(s) required.

    However faith is required – essentially that dogma trumps evidence and doctrine and rules are in the hands of some special few that have special powers to interpret, implement and enforce the dogma.

    Anytime RWAs can latch on to something or someone they can organize around you will get religion and religion-like pressures and implementations from them.

  176. #176 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    March 8, 2010
    That it is not normal for men to choose celibacy as a way of life

    I know a few asexuals who might object, PZ.

    Asexuals don’t really “choose” celibacy, though, any more than straight people “choose” to not have homosexual sex. Choosing to be celibate implies a conscious decision to not pursue sexual relationships one might otherwise desire.

    In other words, PZ already said what you wanted him to say.

  177. #177 ConcernedJoe
    March 8, 2010

    On Topic:

    When I was kid the nuns would preach to us (males and females) not to ever look at our bodies. Mirrors were for after you are dressed!

    And I’d say 99% of us boys were going to hell at any random point in time. The M thing a mortal sin at the time – on par with murder and missing mass.

    Other than their treats of damnation and stories of “true” demon possession and the need for constant guilt and repression of all urges and THOUGHTS that kids have – and their taking out their adult frustrations on more vulnerable kids – the nuns were super teachers!

    In fact to be fair: a small but significant number were actually pretty cool smart young women – you could tell under the habit there was a real person – a vibrant person – in there. Though they were compelled to follow the party line they did not emphasize it. Others (the leaders) were straight out of the middle ages.

  178. #178 Cerberus
    March 8, 2010

    ckitching @27

    Pretty much. Sex and sexuality is something very primal, inherent, and powerful for 99% of humans. Culturally, we’ve been trained to think of it as some infectious foreign agent, but the first response everyone has to me coming out as an asexual is to view it in similar terms as if someone said they never get hungry or don’t need to eat.

    Once you control something that primal, become the main repository by which one is “allowed” to experience that aspect, you pretty much have control over the animal part of their brain to “lead” their thought processes in the necessary directions to support contradictory thinking, defensive survival mechanisms, and a tolerance for cognitive dissonance.

    Basically whatever you want to make large groups of followers do whatever you want. We can see this on a smaller scale with every modern cult. Every modern cult without fail rules with an iron fist a primal aspect of humanity, usually sex and sexuality. Cult compounds often demand loss of consent for sex with the leader and demand only his consent or lack of consent for the okaying or not okaying of sexual acts between cult members.

    Some cults may only limit food, water, or shelter, but sex is the easiest because messing it up isn’t inherently fatal or physically debilitating so you get control without weakening your own followers or killing them off in a way that makes you look incompetent which could prompt rebellion.

    You see this in religions as well. A good number have fasting days or limit acceptable foods or have rituals where you go without water or adequate protection into harsh climes, but they almost universally control sex.

    It’s just easier that way. It’s also a great way to control women and if you’re patriarchal (and almost all of the religions are patriarchal) there is no greater tool than the shaming of sex to force women into a second-class breeder caste for the crime of “bearing the physical evidence of sex”.

    It’s also why we’re not really going to break through religion without feminist deconstructions of sex and promotions of a healthy consent-based view of sex as a natural part of 99% of humanity, because that’s the crux of how they dominate people and why you’ll have, say, millions of Catholics desperately trying to turn a blind eye to the massive evils perpetrated by the Church because “it’s wrong to criticize them”. The origin is the root-level shame over the natural fleshy aspects of humanity and the fear of letting it go will remove the last possible outlets of that against a giant gyring darkness that they were abused into thinking would swallow them whole.

    I’ve seen this first hand deconstructing the layers of catholic baggage from my partner so she can uncover her genuine sexuality and enjoy it without shame. In general, the Catholics are certainly the most practiced in weaponizing sex but all the religions do it for the most part (with the possible exception of Wicca and some but not all of the neo-pagan religions).

  179. #179 scooterKPFT
    March 8, 2010

    BadgersDaughter

    When I was a churchgoer, the most common excuse for exposing yourself to that sort of thing was “know thy enemy.”

    Yup I remember back in the day, a preist, and a few nuns went to the Pussycat thetre to experience satan’s work directly, and that way provide a more educated ministery to their flock.

    The movie is over and they all get up, and the preist is looking around, he can’t find his hat and the nun says, “It’s hanging on your lap”

  180. #180 Cerberus
    March 8, 2010

    Naked Bunny with a Whip @176

    Depends. There are some asexuals like me who engage in some intellectual enjoyment of some unilateral sex acts with full right to rescind at any time. And there is often a conscious choice for every romantic asexual where they have to deal with the “engineering their own rape” scenario where they are under cultural and partner pressure to perform because “that’s what a relationship is” and has to make explicit their asexuality and desire for celibacy or limited lustless sexual encounters on their own terms.

    But what you say is true enough to work in the general sense. For the most part asexuals don’t “choose” to be celibate, seeing as they simply lack a sexuality and more importantly, most don’t choose or affiliate themselves with “celibacy”.

    That latter distinction is worthwhile to point out because the term celibacy whether accurate or not implies a whole worldview about the sinfulness of the sexual world and self-denial and often religious connotations often of a catholic nature.

    Most asexuals, even most male asexuals aren’t really the culturally celibate type nor do they always have the greatest view of the church. There are more atheist and pagan asexuals on AVEN than you would expect from the cultural demographics of society.

    On the other hand, there is nothing, I mean nothing better than being a radical leftist feminist transwoman in a poly relationship to a woman and casually noting that I win their religions by virtue of being asexual and thus having been immaculately free of lust from the day I was born.

    Blows their fucking minds.

    To the hit and run troll earlier on:

    Others have dealt with it pretty well so I don’t need to add anything other than restate the obvious so many others have pointed out. There are a wealth of well-known, well-documented genetic disorders that are fatal in childhood or pre-adolescence. Just because something “shouldn’t” be passed on doesn’t mean it hasn’t, repeatedly, especially when things like the closet, rape, delayed self-realization often meant gays reproduced pretty near standard rates even before the days of turkey basters and surrogate eggs.

    And that’s before getting into the fact that sexuality is remarkably varied and the vast continuum known as bisexuality in all its Kinsey scale flavors comes into play way more than we like to admit as a society, so gay continuum genes are propagating all the time through that and will probably continue to do so for a good long time.

    In short, standard know-nothing religotard.

    P.S. If you ever come back, how does it feel that I’m better at your religion than you?

  181. #181 Cerberus
    March 8, 2010

    One last note about the control aspects. This really is the heart of the religious way of working and how it’s used to push morality away from more generalized notions about doing right by others and doing your own thing while minimizing harm and resisting those who are abusing relationships of power to bring harm to other towards a survivalist mentality of focusing entirely on arbitrary lists of things and people to avoid.

    The point is to use control of the primal to get the entrance way and set up a sieged mentality in the victim, the use of the absurd list and constant punishment for deviance to train the process and create in-groups and out-groups and rely on the brain’s desire to protect itself and make sense of this situation to breed the slavish loyalty needed.

    There’s a reason why the more religious people respond far more strongly to “bad words” than actual bad deeds or injustices. It’s okay to murder or support the murders of countless black people in lynching campaigns, but hiss and cover your ears whenever something says “fuck”.

    It’s also worth noting that the “bad words” are inherently those that remind us of our corporal nature. Fuck, shit, piss, cock, cunt, these are all reminders of fleshy based reality and all involve the genital and sex organs of the body though some in an unrelated function (except for watersports and scat).

    Which is what is also trained in this automatic response. Not just a fear of sex, but of anything that reminds us of the fact that we’re fleshy organisms that will die, decompose, or revert to animal survival mechanisms given enough abuse.

    There is the dual promise, the threat implicit in the inherent in sex and the promise of a reward for the self-destruction in promise of freedom from the time limit inherent in our fleshy construction.

    It’s no surprise then that one of the favorite tactics of the anti-sex crowd is either fixation on the scat end of anal sex or blown up pictures of misleading medical procedures. Attack it, treat it as not only gross but evil for daring to remind you of your corpulence! And obey your leaders and be literally terrified of self-discovery.

  182. #182 aratina cage of the OM
    March 8, 2010

    You might want to leave out the frequent use of the “f-enheimer” (bad word that starts with F) when you come out to the light of day…I cant remember the last time I saw the “F-enheimer” in Nature magazine. -rchgn168

    Foofenheimer?
    Frankenheimer??
    Fraphenheimer???
    Fabtabulopenheimer????

    May your god strike you dead for whatever vile profanity it was you were alluding to.

  183. #183 nigelTheBold
    March 8, 2010

    Judas came out of the bathroom, his robe half-open. “Jesus, honey, could you help me with this?” He pointed down near his undone sash.

    “Oh, for My sake.” Jesus was tired of the constant sex, the half-assed innuendo, the late night drug-suffused orgies. Maybe not the orgies, he thought. “Take care of it yourself. There’s nothing in My book about masturbation. Just don’t lust after anyone while you do it.”

    Judas smiled. “That kinda defeats the purpose, doesn’t it, my sweet love stick?”

    Most of all, Jesus was tired of the pet names. They made his back teeth ache. “That’s it,” He said. “I’m leaving you.”

    Judas stood silent a moment, stunned and motionless. His head filled up with the sound of braying unicorns. Then even they fell silent. “Wha.. leaving me?”

    “Yes.” Jesus stood from the bed. His robe lay in a pile on the floor, where it had fallen when Judas had caressed His hair, stroked His shoulder, slid the robe across His olive skin. “Leaving you.” He quickly donned the robe. Perversely, he noted the striking odor of sweat and sex. He thought, I’m going to have to wash this today.

    “But where will you go?”

    Jesus stood in the doorway. Beyond, in the sunshine, goats wandered the dusty streets, braying much like unicorns might. “John, maybe. He’s always asking me to stay over with him.” Jesus had seen John staring in the bathhouses. He was sure John would welcome Him with open arms. Open everything.

    Judas sank to his knees. “But… how can I live without you?”

    Outside, the goats were silent, struck dumb by the despair that still echoed among the dust-encrusted buildings. “You’ll find a way.” Jesus turned, walked through the door, out into the goats and sunshine.

    (From I post I made at RRS a few months back, responding to some fellow who asked, “How can you live without Jesus?” Reposted here for the fuck of it.)

  184. #184 Folderol & Ephemera
    March 8, 2010

    To change the topic (somewhat) back to the “Bibles for Porn” issue: one criticism that could be made of the San Antonio campaign is that there are social and ethical arguments (as opposed to the religious ones) against either supporting pornography (in general) or the U.S. pornography industry (in specific).

    There is a substantial feminist and ethical critique of “mainstream” heterosexual-oriented commercial pornography that has nothing to do with any religious or pseudo-religious sentiment; a critique that such material (and the way it is made, marketed, and metastasized) is exploitative and repressive; blatantly misogynist and racist; dehumanizing for the viewers; and traumatizing for the participants. Additionally, there is very little responsible regulation of the industry, viz a viz such things as unsafe working conditions, rampant nonprosecuted assault and battery, oppressive contracting agreements, etc.

    Whether or not one agrees with these criticisms, they should be acknowledged as entirely legitimate (as opposed to the religious anti-sex arguments, which are, of course, mostly just offensive bronze age rubbish).

    I’m not sure if there has already been any substantial debate about these specific objections to the distribution of pornography as a campaign tactic, in regards to this specific atheist group (sorry if I missed it; I’m a somewhat intermittent lurker), but if not . . . shouldn’t there be?

  185. #185 Aquaria
    March 8, 2010

    Ha! As soon as my son’s girlfriend saw the smut-for-smut table at UTSA, she took out her iPhone, clicked a photo and sent it to the Aquaria spawn, who promptly ran into my office and showed it to me. We were howling with laughter.

    A local TV news show ran a spot about a bunch of jr. christards sniveling about how mean the atheists are to say that about the biiiiiibul, how they’re just focusing on a few things not the whole of it, and Jaysus is luuuuvvv, and all the other mendacious bilge that comes from a fool hopped up on religion. Then came the clip of the guy from UTSA saying that the atheists have their right to speech, too, and UTSA wasn’t about to do anything to stop them, unless they do something illegal.

    It apparently made the front page on the Excuse-for-News, too. As with the TV spot, I only saw the page in passing, but the E-N posts most of its stuff online. I’m sure it’s there.

    I’ve figured out what’s going on with the whining, too: They think that the atheists are getting a special privilege. See, they’ve had modern culture hammering into their heads that it’s wrong to hate people simply for what they believe.

    Of course, most godtards have this curious failing of not being able to distinguish between criticism and hate. And let’s not forget that when they criticize, it’s criticism, not hate. They have this bizarre notion that only they a) know why to criticize and, how to do it properly; ergo, b) only they can criticize others. No one else.

    Yeah, it’s as stupid and hypocritical as it sounds, but religion tends to instill in its victims an infantile narcissism and sociopathy, in equal measure.

  186. #186 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 8, 2010

    Yawn, feminist “ethical” arguments against porn. Not quite as valid as they claim. We’ve had that discussion in the past.

  187. #187 nigelTheBold
    March 8, 2010

    Whether or not one agrees with these criticisms, they should be acknowledged as entirely legitimate . . .

    Left hand, allow me to introduce you to the right hand. Right hand, meet left hand. (See, your statement has a problem with handedness. The right hand of the clause doesn’t know what the left hand is saying.)

    Uhm . . . If I disagree with the premise (that there are substantial feminist and ethical arguments against mainstream porn), then these criticisms should not be acknowledged as entirely legitimate.

    Some of the arguments are perhaps legitimate, such as poor contracts, abuse, and so on. These are labor problems, though, and porn workers might consider organizing if they feel particularly exploited.

  188. #188 aratina cage
    March 8, 2010

    such material (and the way it is made, marketed, and metastasized) is exploitative and repressive; blatantly misogynist and racist; dehumanizing for the viewers; and traumatizing for the participants.

    So are the Bible and most other holy texts, but I would go farther and say holy texts can and have been deadly as well as traumatizing for the participants in their making and propagation.

    Additionally, there is very little responsible regulation of the industry, viz a viz such things as unsafe working conditions, rampant nonprosecuted assault and battery, oppressive contracting agreements, etc.

    Same for the religion industry, and I think a case could be made that religion is worse in many ways; it does get to skirt the law in the USA at least based on the Bill of Rights. For instance, it wasn’t participation in porn that turned Carrie Prejean into a hateful homophobe, that took religion.

    Smut For Smut. They are both smut. There is not an inherent value judgment being made here between holy texts and porn, just a comparison of their smuttiness.

  189. #189 Folderol & Ephemera
    March 8, 2010

    Nerd of Redhead@186

    Sorry to bore you. Glad the issue has been aired, at least.

    nigelTheBold@187

    I suppose I meant “legitimate” in that they (they = certain arguments) can be debated in good faith, and not lumped in with, say, bible quotes (which I view to be inherently “illegitimate,” i.e., not to be taken seriously as a debatable point). I think you’re taking “legitimate” to mean “correct.”

    IOW, whether or not you believe pornography to be “exploitative” (or whatnot), it’s something reasonable people can disagree about while still being reasonable (such as the ethical ramifications of pornography, or property, or abortion, or whatever), as opposed to so-called “religious” debates in which one person is almost invariably demonstrably wrong (e.g., creationism, transubstantiation, et. al.).

    As far as my clauses go (not to mention my prepositions or parentheticals!), I plead guilty to whatever charge you may place upon me. It’s a wonder I can string sentences together at all, sometimes.

  190. #190 nigelTheBold
    March 8, 2010

    I suppose I meant “legitimate” in that they (they = certain arguments) can be debated in good faith, and not lumped in with, say, bible quotes (which I view to be inherently “illegitimate,” i.e., not to be taken seriously as a debatable point).

    Ah! In that case: I apologize for misreading you. I retract my snark.

  191. #191 Folderol & Ephemera
    March 8, 2010

    aratina cage @188

    Ah, but that’s a whole other point. Personally speaking, I certainly believe that no matter how bad pornography may be, religious indoctrination is usually far, far worse. I have yet to have heard of any scandal in the pornography industry that comes close to what the Catholic hierarchy has been up to, or what Mormon splinter groups do on a regular basis. I almost feel that this goes without saying (but then, nothing really goes without saying, if you will).

    I suppose that I’m more, um, concerned about the political optics of furthering one’s activism goals by purchasing and distributing pornography.

    nigelTheBold@190: Internets snark cannot be retracted (such retraction would be “snikt,” not “snark”); snark can only be regretted or redacted. ;)

  192. #192 catgirl
    March 8, 2010

    Here’s what I don’t understand about the whole “purity” thing. What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one? Why is it that some men won’t want to marry a woman who has been contaminated by a simple penis?

    And the double standard is very weird. It’s considered wrong for women to have premarital sex, but either neutral or good for men to do it. There’s only one way that can work out for everyone, but unfortunately they’re not big on homosexuality either. It sets up this weird situation where every time there’s a possibility for sex to happen, one person will have to end up as the loser and one as the winner.

  193. #193 Krystalline Apostate
    March 8, 2010

    @ 142:

    What’s up, Tai Chi Master?

    I am but a humble student…(cue the theme from Kung Fu right about…now)

    (We sat next to each other at BJ’s Restaurant in Cupertino, after PZ’s talk at De Anza College in January… remember? Great fun!)

    How could I forget. You’re the guy who tells cute women, “Hey, he thinks you’re cute!”

  194. #194 Grewgills
    March 8, 2010

    To me religion is anything…
    …that attempts systematically…gather more followers and then control them

    Your definition leaves out all of the exclusivist religions.
    Communism is a political/economic system not a religion though there may be limited overlap in how adherents treat the organizing structures.

  195. #195 Matt Penfold
    March 8, 2010

    Your definition leaves out all of the exclusivist religions. Communism is a political/economic system not a religion though there may be limited overlap in how adherents treat the organizing structures.

    Google political religion.

  196. #196 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 8, 2010

    Here’s what I don’t understand about the whole “purity” thing. What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one?

    because they are full of poison.

  197. #197 Ol'Greg
    March 8, 2010

    What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one?

    AFAIK it comes down to the woman being a baby machine and a tainted woman, being like a dirty flower pot left under a bird feeder, may sprout a weed rather than your precious rose bush.

    Paternity testing be damned.

    It’s considered wrong for women to have premarital sex, but either neutral or good for men to do it.

    Pretty sure this comes down to men still being seen as the active and learning part of humanity and women being seen as a passive constant.

    Women are more like hats than people. You have to try a few on and then find one that fits. Of course a good hat will not have some one else’s head sweat on it. So the objective is to try on enough hats, find a style you like, and then get a new unworn one for yourself in that fashion.

    As far as the feminist objections to porn, I’m sorry I still do hold some of those views. On the other hand, I see most of those problems with porn as arising from the problems with sex in religion. Improving the situation of porn and women’s place in society involves working against the damage done by religion.

    Porn can be made better and healthier for people by working on larger social issues. Religion, I think, can not be improved as it is one of the larger social issues damaging people.

  198. #198 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 8, 2010

    Here’s what I don’t understand about the whole “purity” thing. What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one?

    because they are full of poison.

  199. #199 aratina cage
    March 8, 2010

    I suppose that I’m more, um, concerned about the political optics of furthering one’s activism goals by purchasing and distributing pornography.

    Well, that’s an understandable position. I think they were going right for the shock and outrage angle that exposes religious hypocrisy, though, and maybe have a little fun at the same time but not really trying to show support for the publications they purchased to trade in for holy texts in any way other than “you might as well be reading this”.

  200. #200 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 8, 2010

    oh yay

    a double post.

    flame me please, I deserve it

  201. #201 Brownian, OM
    March 8, 2010

    Here’s what I don’t understand about the whole “purity” thing. What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one?

    Have you seen what we do with those things and where we keep ‘em?

    I wouldn’t dream of going near someone who’d willingly touch any of the stuff I keep in my ginch.

  202. #202 Mike Wagner
    March 8, 2010

    I, for one, am glad that I can trade the bible for porn.

    I get so tired of masturbating to Revelation.

    fap fap fap.

  203. #203 nigelTheBold
    March 8, 2010

    I wouldn’t dream of going near someone who’d willingly touch any of the stuff I keep in my ginch.

    Can’t. Talk. Choking.

    Now I’m going to have to explain to the boss why I need a new keyboard.

  204. #204 catgirl
    March 8, 2010

    Have you seen what we do with those things and where we keep ‘em?

    It can’t be any worse than what goes on in my southern parts. You do realize that blood comes out of there on a periodic basis, right? As long as you wash your stuff before it gets near me, I won’t be contaminated by it.

  205. #205 Copyleft
    March 8, 2010

    “Sex is natural, sex is good;
    Not everybody does it, but everybody should.”

    And that’s from no less a religious authority than GEORGE MICHAEL, folks–a man named after TWO saints!

  206. #206 Cliff Hendroval
    March 8, 2010

    You might find that the true intellectuals of Christianity provide a bit more to ponder than your third grade sunday school teacher.

    Watch out, everybody…he’s gonna break out his version of the heavy artillery – C.S. Lewis!

  207. #207 toth
    March 8, 2010

    I’m sorry, I didn’t see any of the last half. I was busy worshiping Mary.

  208. #208 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    March 8, 2010

    I wouldn’t dream of going near someone who’d willingly touch any of the stuff I keep in my ginch.

    I had to look up ginch and I’m sooooooooooooooooo glad it wasn’t what I was imagining it might be.

  209. #209 ConcernedJoe
    March 8, 2010

    Grewgills (cool handle) #194 I think Matt #195 gave you hints as to my head re: things like Russia’s communist system…

    but to take up shield and sword myself a second re: exclusivism —

    Exclusivist religions of significance do as I said (“[they] attempt systematically…[to] gather more followers and then control them “). That is they (through some mechanism and rules/controls they concoct) drive toward MORE not less followers and then work tenaciously and often viciously to hold on to them.

    Take the sects of Jews that seem to practice absolute exclusivism; note their corresponding imperatives for large families and for strict religious indoctrination of offspring and their strict controls on the who/what/when/where of marriage. All that is without purpose? Of course not rather obvious that the purpose is as I stated.

    Your point would make more augmentative sense if you pointed out that sects like modern day Friends (Quakers) and Unitarian Universalists seem to do little to “gather more followers and then control them”. Yes I would basically agree.

    But I would add that they are rather on the bottom of established religions. They maintain themselves mostly because (1) their unadvertised but still felt messages and styles can and do resonate with many secularists who still want the community aspects of religion and some group affirmation of their personal philosophy (e.g. of no war), (2) they have some entrenched well deserved good presence – e.g. in education and history (e.g., Quaker in name and loose philosophy schools, and see Philly) were passive recruiting happens, and/or (3) they have or had members and/or assets rich enough to sustain them.

    These religions by example are BTW not really religions by my definition though they claim some ties to the supernatural. Why not? They have many secular members, god is very amorphous and personal if mentioned at all. But MORE importantly they generally eschew leadership (that is shared responsibility), they have perhaps a favored philosophy of life but not really dogma and doctrine for most part defines morality absolutely, and they are more like democratic Clubs than religions in their operations and treatment of members.

  210. #210 SaintStephen
    March 8, 2010

    @ Krystalline Apostate #193:

    But she WAS cute! And you DID think so!

    ;-P

    Does this mean I’m hired as your wingman? I got your six, Master Kwai Chang Caine.

  211. #211 Cerberus
    March 8, 2010

    Per Folderol @184, there are indeed some cases to be made against mainstream porn as an immensely flawed and often regressive and certainly inefficient or non-ideal form of masturbatory fodder. Now, some of the “porn is inherently evil” stuff is and possibly was even in the context of the time over the top, but the fact that mainstream porn has some problematic elements is pretty well established.

    Also note the highlighting of mainstream. Feminist porn does exist and indie porn movements such as erotic documentaries, porn-star directed porn, female-directed porn, and the massive fan-fiction, yaoi, and “erotica” movements have done much in their own ways to make “mainstream porn” far from the only game in town when someone wants something to “polish the flesh” as it were.

    As per aratina @188, religion definitely has the worse history as it’s been rather actively anti-women whereas mainstream porn’s misogynist elements are a more of it arising in a sex-hating women-hating culture and dominated by the tastes of those consuming porn the most regularly which was quickly dominated by…interesting characters in the same unfortunate manner Xbox Live got dominated by frightening frightening 13 year olds. It’s the difference between passive and active racism. Sure, it sucks when white suburbia thinks of your home as a gang-infested hell-hole that should be allowed to rot, but it sucks somewhat worse to have the Klan roll through looking for “an example” and even worse when the Klan get special dispensation to talk about how much they hate you because well, they say they’re super moral people and worth more because of it. Which is sort of the feminist problem with religion in a nutshell.

    Oh you think women are breeding machines fit only as chattel? That’s pretty creepy…Oh, GOD thinks women are breeding machines fit only as chattel, please let us immediately stop listening to the complaints of women and seriously contemplate your deep emotional struggle on the issue.

    It’s also worth noting and indeed crucial to note that mainstream porn’s worst most women-hating elements really owe their genesis to the dominant mainstream religions in America. The violent subtexts and body-disforming plastic surgeries and the “sex as punishment” (absent BDSM contexts) elements in mainstream porn that make it “problematic” are direct results from religious ideas on the role of women.

    Most critically is the idea of “madonna and whore” where a sexual woman who admits to a sexuality must be punished for it by daring to admit such a sinful wrongness and the man must degrade her and borderline remove her consent or her enjoyment and punish her with his acceptable use of sexuality. This is a product of religious ideas about the role of sexuality in society and there it is one of the central feminist critiques of the problematic nature of mainstream pornography. Body-deformation comes from the fear of the fleshy I mentioned above.

    In short, religion is why our “allowable” presentations of the erotic tend to suck, both by limiting artistically interesting examinations of the erotic and by skewing the industries that allow it into its own twisted ideas of how the “sin-bound” women should act, look, and be treated.

    In short, religion ruins everything.

  212. #212 Benny the Icepick
    March 8, 2010

    In the video from Fox at 1:26 – “They have asked? the college to get this Atheist Agenda group off.”

    Oh, man! Whenever there’s a story about porn, do NOT include the words “get” and “off” in such close proximity. Hilarious!

  213. #213 alfrodull
    March 8, 2010

    As I told my wife when I read about this a couple of days ago, if we could harness the energy of the Porn for Bibles people and the bibles for Porn people, we would have a perpetual motion machine. Just think, the circular of exchanges of a couple of bibles and a couple of playboys and the world’s energy crisis would be solved.

  214. #214 GeekGirlsRule
    March 8, 2010

    See, now a group of us did this in 1993 at Wenatchee Valley Community College in Eastern Washington.

    We walked on to campus one day, and the New Testament folks were there. When we saw our buddy Jan and told him about them, he leapt to his feet and said, “I’ll be right back!” Fifteen minutes later he was back with a huge box of porn.

    So we set up right across from the Bible guy, and gave out Playboys and Playgirls to passerby. The really funny part was, most guys were too embarassed to take the Playboys, but the women were ALL OVER taking the Playgirls.

    We only had to follow the Bible guy to two other locations on campus before he fled. When I had to explain why I missed class, and told me Lit professor, she cackled and then asked me if we had any porn left.

  215. #215 Grewgills
    March 8, 2010

    You folks ejaculate all over your keyboards as you excitedly attack

    Keyboard…too…sticky…to…respond

    add to that the evidence that female relatives of gay men seem to be more fertile, and it becomes evident that whatever is responsible for increased likelihood of gayness in men seems to be also responsible for increased number of babies in women, so it’s a gene (or set of genes) that seems to be abundantly transferred through the female line

    Could you provide cites?

    Ah, sex. I think I remember that. I seem to recall that it was fun.

    Reminds me of a bad joke:
    A young man preparing for marriage asks an older man who has been married for some time if marriage really does end sex in a relationship.
    The older man says, “Hell no, I still have sex every day…and sometimes the wife even joins me.”

    The really funny part was, most guys were too embarassed to take the Playboys, but the women were ALL OVER taking the Playgirls.

    Along a similar vein, the few times I have told some version of the above joke in mixed company the women howl and the men tend to be a bit taken aback by the women’s reaction.

    not all religions believe in god(s),
    It it doesn’t, is it really a religion?

    Depends on your definition of God: if you mean any supernatural force then all religions have it/them, if you mean a personal being that actively cares about what is happening with us then not all do. There are a lot of versions of the ‘all pervading energy that unites us’ theme.

    What it is about penises that is so terrible that women become impure simply for contacting one?

    Because if there has been another penis there you may not be the baby’s daddy. There was no PCR or even blood testing when the books were written and once its written…

    Google political religion

    The, admittedly few, articles I perused all talked about political philosophies with political and cultural power similar to religion. My car has mechanical power similar to 885 horses, but it isn’t even a mammal.

  216. #216 Grewgills
    March 8, 2010

    Oops, double tapped the 8 and gave my car an awesome power boost.

  217. #217 freemage.geo#b98e9
    March 8, 2010

    Grewgills: I believe he was refering to Political Religion–a civil construct that takes on all the odious aspects of organized religion, even though they usually lack a blatantly supernatural element.

    And one thing I’ve always found interesting is how much most Christians focus on sexual issues, in comparison to how LITTLE the Big C himself had to say on the matter. There’s one passage where he advocates celibacy in general, and a second where he tells the apostles to refrain from “sexual immorality” (and most Biblical scholars will tell you that’s a mistranslation–he’s actually advocating against “sexual idolotry”, a pagan practice that frequently entailed the sexualized sacrifice of a virgin to ensure good crops).

    Most “Christians” are actually “Paulites”, particularly on issues of sex.

  218. #218 Krystalline Apostate
    March 8, 2010

    @ 210:

    But she WAS cute! And you DID think so!

    True dat.

    Does this mean I’m hired as your wingman?

    Long as you don’t pull a GWB, & bail @ the final stretch.

    I got your six, Master Kwai Chang Caine.

    When you snatch this pebble from my hand…dammit, I’m channeling Carradine now.
    & you can call me Kryst.

  219. #219 Krystalline Apostate
    March 9, 2010

    I wouldn’t dream of going near someone who’d willingly touch any of the stuff I keep in my ginch.

    Sounds lonely.

  220. #220 tristan.croll
    March 9, 2010

    To the people calling “paedophile” on the final picture: you’ve never seen an asian woman naked, have you?

  221. #221 John Salerno
    March 9, 2010

    “It’s in the New Testament, too, made even more contemptible in the words of that wretched misogynist, Paul.”

    I just read Bart Ehrman’s “Jesus, Interrupted” about the New Testament and apparently the letters actually believed to be written by Paul were favorable to women. However, there are many other letters forged in Paul’s name and later incorrectly attributed to him that are very clearly misogynistic.

    So it may not be fair to call Paul a misogynist, assuming scholars are correct about author attribution. Then again, we may simply be using the word “Paul” as a catch-all for the author of all the letters, since that’s what Christians believe or are taught anyway.

  222. #222 Jim
    March 9, 2010

    PZ Myers: “Sex is dirty; sex is sinful; sex is corruption; sex is filthy; sex will lead you into iniquity and evil. Christianity is rife with these attitudes, and you can find them imbedded deeply into the Bible.”

    As is his wont, Myers grossly misrepresents what Christianity teaches. There may be some Christians who think that “sex is dirty…sinful…corruption…filthy,” but I suspect there are many non-Christians – even atheists – who think the same thing. The vast majority of Christians, however, think that sex is a gift from God that is at its best (in terms of pleasure, fulfillment, health, and purpose) when it is enjoyed as God intended for it to be enjoyed, that is to say, within the confines of life-long monogamous marriage between a man and woman unrelated by blood. I dare say that virtually all of the pathologies associated with sex – STDs, unintended pregnancies, abortion, emotional trauma, even death – would disappear if we’d simply conform our sexual behavior to God’s standard (as described in the Bible). Interestingly (and tellingly) the most comprehensive sex survey ever done in America found that religious people achieve much higher levels of sexual satisfaction than non-religious people.

    http://www.eroticliberty.com/ebooks/revengeofthechurchladies.pdf

  223. #223 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    Damn, Jim. How self-righteous can you get? And I would like to know if you have yet cut your balls off to conform to the Biblical standards? (see comment #61)

  224. #224 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    1 Corinthians 7:8-10 (King James Version)

    8I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I.

    9But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

    10And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband.

    Matthew 19:12 (King James Version)

    For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.

    Gee, Jim! Where could one have gotten from the bible the idea that sex is filthy?

  225. #225 Jim
    March 9, 2010

    “Gee, Jim! Where could one have gotten from the bible the idea that sex is filthy?”

    By misreading the Bible.

  226. #226 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    By misreading the Bible. -God’s sex preacher, Jim

    Unpossible. That book is absolutely clear on every word it contains. Or are you questioning the veracity of God’s word?

  227. #227 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Jim is just an other cafeteria christian.

    1 Corinthians 7:1-7

    1Now for the matters you wrote about: It is good for a man not to marry.[a] 2But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. 3The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. 5Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. 6I say this as a concession, not as a command. 7I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.

    I would say it is pretty damned clear that god is saying that sex should be avoided. But because you filthy humans cannot abide by it, it is only to be under these conditions.

    Forgive me because I cannot see this as an endorsement of sex.

  228. #228 Knockgoats
    March 9, 2010

    if we’d simply conform our sexual behavior to God’s standard (as described in the Bible) – Jim

    Oh, you mean raping slavegirls, offering your duaghters for gang rape, getting your father drunk so he’ll screw you, passing your wife off as your sister and so leading foreign kings into involuntary adultery, taking scores of concubines, impregnating your wife’s handmaid then abandoning her and the resulting child to die…

    BTW, Jim, your link doesn’t actually give us the references to these studies so we can check what they say, rather than what your link says they say. Now, why might that be?

    Moreover, most of the “evidence” is apparently from self-report of current satisfaction, e.g.:

    “several studies (including the
    Redbook survey) show that women who engage in early sexual activity and those who
    have had multiple partners are less apt to express satisfaction with their sex lives than
    women who entered marriage with little or no sexual baggage.”

    – which tells us precisely nothing (and nor does reported frequency of orgasm unless we can be sure that those reporting actually knew what an orgasm feels like).

    “In fact, most major studies show a strong correlation between monogamous
    marriage and sexual satisfaction.”

    Duh! Of course, one of the main reasons for seeking sex outside a monogamous relationship is a lack of sexual satisfaction within the relationship. Also, a lot of people outside a monogamous marriage won’t be getting any sex with a partner at all.

    Try again, Jim.

  229. #229 Jim
    March 9, 2010

    “I would say it is pretty damned clear that god is saying that sex should be avoided.”

    How, then, do you explain God’s instructions to Adam and Eve (and – by extension – to all human beings) to “be fruitful and increase in number” (Genesis 1:28)? That can’t be done by avoiding sex.

  230. #230 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    How, then, do you explain God’s instructions to Adam and Eve (and – by extension – to all human beings) to “be fruitful and increase in number” (Genesis 1:28)? That can’t be done by avoiding sex. -Jim, God’s most sincere sex preacher

    Right, ’cause every time Jim has sex he makes a baby. Jim only has sex to reproduce (and so should you!!!).

  231. #231 Jim
    March 9, 2010

    Me: “…if we’d simply conform our sexual behavior to God’s standard (as described in the Bible).”

    Knockgoats: “Oh, you mean raping slavegirls, offering your duaghters for gang rape, getting your father drunk so he’ll screw you, passing your wife off as your sister and so leading foreign kings into involuntary adultery, taking scores of concubines, impregnating your wife’s handmaid then abandoning her and the resulting child to die…”

    No, I don’t mean any of that. You’re confusing sexual behaviors described in the Bible (and they’re all in the Bible) with God’s standards for sexual behavior. Just because a behavior is mentioned in the Bible, it doesn’t follow that God condones the behavior.

  232. #232 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    And yet, here is Jesus saying that it is best to avoid sex and if one must fuck, to get married. But I guess that is just my misinterpretation. Jim is in touch with THE TRUTH!

  233. #233 Caine
    March 9, 2010

    Jim the SexGodbot:

    How, then, do you explain God’s instructions to Adam and Eve (and – by extension – to all human beings) to “be fruitful and increase in number” (Genesis 1:28)? That can’t be done by avoiding sex.

    *sigh* Do you think that every single sex act results in pregnancy? Obviously, it doesn’t. As it stands, only one of those little wigglers is going to score; what of all that wastefulness? *gasp* God kinda fucked up there.

    1 Samuel 20:41 And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded.

    David and Jonathan weren’t trying to make a baby, ya know.

  234. #234 Jim
    March 9, 2010

    “And yet, here is Jesus saying that it is best to avoid sex and if one must fuck, to get married. But I guess that is just my misinterpretation. Jim is in touch with THE TRUTH!”

    The passage you quoted was Paul, not Jesus, speaking, and Paul was saying that it’s good for men to abstain from sex to devote themselves to serving God (as he did). He was not saying that everyone should “avoid sex.”

    If you want to get in touch with what the Bible regards as THE TRUTH, you ought to try making contextual interpretations of passages from the Bible. If either of us is engaged in a cafeteria-style reading of the Bible, I’d say it’s you.

  235. #235 Owlmirror
    March 9, 2010

    No, I don’t mean any of that. You’re confusing sexual behaviors described in the Bible (and they’re all in the Bible) with God’s standards for sexual behavior. Just because a behavior is mentioned in the Bible, it doesn’t follow that God condones the behavior.

    How about when God, in the bible, actually orders the behavior?

    Deuteronomy 20:10-15

    Deuteronomy 21:10-13

    Numbers 31:1,15-18,26-41

  236. #236 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Oh! It was Paul? Hey! All of a sudden there is no christian shame in having sex!

    Jim! I might like you better if we slept together!

  237. #237 KOPD
    March 9, 2010

    God’s instructions to Adam and Eve (and – by extension – to all human beings)

    That parenthetical part is an assumption read into it by the reader. Quiverfuls and others also take that out of context. The rest of the sentence is “fill the earth and subdue it.” It’s been filled and subdued. Please stop multiplying so damned much now, thank you.

  238. #238 Owlmirror
    March 9, 2010

    The passage you quoted was Paul, not Jesus, speaking, and Paul was saying that it’s good for men to abstain from sex to devote themselves to serving God (as he did). He was not saying that everyone should “avoid sex.”

    Actually, Jesus said that even better than not having sex is to self-castrate.

    Matthew 19:12

    If you want to get in touch with what the Bible regards as THE TRUTH, you ought to try making contextual interpretations of passages from the Bible.

    Ah, and of course you have direct access to just know what THE TRUTH is and what it isn’t.

  239. #239 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    KOPD, you are forgetting this, many of those quiverfuls are out to out breed the non white peoples.

  240. #240 Janine, Mistress Of Foul Mouth Abuse, OM
    March 9, 2010

    Actually, Jesus said that even better than not having sex is to self-castrate.

    I,ve had my eye on that carving knife. You’ve been safe so far.

    (OH NO! I have just made a threat of violence on the internet! The gang at the Intersection will weep themselves to sleep tonight!)

  241. #241 Knockgoats
    March 9, 2010

    Jim,

    The rape of slavegirls is at God’s direct command:

    Numbers 31:17-18 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

    Lot, who offered his daughters for gang rape, is described as “just” and “righteous” in 2 Peter 2. It’s also Lot, that just and righteous man, who screws his daughters when they get him drunk (yeah, right, tell that to court).

    There is no indication that God disapproves of the polygamy of Abraham, Jacob, David (although admittedly he does draw the line at the murder of Uriah the Hittite), etc.

    Nor does God find anything reprehensible in selling your daughter into sexual slavery, as long as the buyer doesn’t sell her on to a foreigner:

    Exodus 21:7 And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as the menservants do.
    21:8 If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her.

    Throughout the OT, women are treated simply as the possessions of men. The NT is not much better. Jesus himself encourages men to leave their wives and children – in an age when that would generally have meant destitution.

    Mark 10:29 And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s,
    10:30 But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.

    Paul’s misogyny and hatred of sex are justly notorious. the latter has already been dealt with by others. 1 Corinthians suffices to show the former. Christianity embodies fear and hatred of women.

  242. #242 aratina cage
    March 9, 2010

    Got any more Christian sex values you would like us to smack down, Jim?

  243. #243 KOPD
    March 9, 2010

    Janine:
    Thank you for reminding me. It was silly of me to forget that.

  244. #244 Knockgoats
    March 9, 2010

    If you want to get in touch with what the Bible regards as THE TRUTH, you ought to try making contextual interpretations of passages from the Bible pretending all the nasty bits don’t mean what they obviously do. – Jim

    Fixed for you Jim. No charge.

  245. #245 WowbaggerOM
    March 9, 2010

    Jim wrote:

    Just because a behavior is mentioned in the Bible, it doesn’t follow that God condones the behavior.

    And yet there’s a thorough description of what should be done to those who commit heinous acts like collecting sticks on the sabbath. You’d think if the god character was against those sex acts he’d have somehow communicated it.

    Or are you saying sabbath stick-collecting is worse than rape and forced prostitution?

  246. #246 Walton, Extra Special Dumpling of Awesome
    March 9, 2010

    Knockgoats @#241,

    To be fair, scholars aren’t sure what proportion of the “Pauline epistles” were actually written by Paul; there are several which are thought to be pseudonymous. Much of the most misogynistic content is in 1 Corinthians, which most scholars think Paul did write, but the passages about women are sometimes argued to be interpolations by later scholars. The “writings of Paul” in the modern-day canon are certainly highly misogynistic, but it seems to have been very popular in the early Christian communities to simply make up stuff and attribute it to Paul (perhaps rather like the large number of doubtful Winston Churchill quotes that circulate today).

    Arguing about the teachings of Paul, like arguing about the teachings of Jesus, is doomed to be a hopeless enterprise because we simply know very little about the reality of either as historical figures. There are many theories, but a paucity of solid evidence. (Which makes it all the more irrational that Christians base their entire worldview on texts of very dubious historical provenance.)

  247. #247 louis14
    March 10, 2010

    And wouldn’t you know? We’ve got a poll to Pharyngulate.

    At the Colorado Springs gazette:
    OUR VIEW: Atheists trade bibles for porn; dis Mother Teresa (vote in poll).

    http://www.gazette.com/opinion/atheists-95335-religion-good.html

    There’s a dreadful article about how only religious people do good works and that atheists just don’t. This feeds into a comment that atheists can find nothing better to do than to ‘dis’ Mother Teresa.

    Then we get to vote.

    2,4,6,8
    Click the link and Pharyngulate!

  248. #248 elderotter
    March 11, 2010

    @75
    I agree with your definition of a Religion. I consider myself a Deist in that I believe in God but not Religion. Ido not have a need to prove the existance of God becuase I have no need for anyone else to believe as I do. If someone else wishes to be a member of a religion or an atheist it is up to them. I will not attempt to convert them to my views, and all I ask is for them to return the favor. Of course this never happens. I have been told that I am wrong and have people try to convert me to a variety of religions, cults, and belief systems… including atheism. Some Atheists are just as evangelical as the most zealous members of any religion.
    My problems with Christianity revolve around the fact that the christian God required either a human sacrifice or a human/divine hybrid sacrifce to appease it’s anger. Human Sacrifice is evil in my opinion. Also the last supper: Eat of this is my body = cannabilism, which is evil in my opinion and Drink of this it is my blood = vampirism, which is a bad thing in my opinion.
    Also most Christians don’t even understand the nature of the alleged sacrifice of the said Jesus. They think that his death erases their sins, my study of the bible indicates to me that his death erased original sin – the sin of Adam.
    What was the sin of Adam – he disobeyed the Christian God and became aware of the difference between Good and Evil… which means prior to eating of the fruit he had no idea that disobeying God was Evil. The Christian God was mad because Adam became a Human instead of just another animal.
    I believe that God doesn’t care what name you use for God. I believe that God doesn’t care if you are in a religion or which one if you are. I believe God cares about how you behave yourself and how you act towards others. One thing the Christians got right in my opinion is in the Lord’s Prayer: Forgive me my trespasses AS I FORGIVE OTHERS. You will be forgiven exactly to the degree you forgive others.
    Now as to the Christian who had a problem in his post about all the locker room language here. Are you the fucking Language Police? Who died and made you boss?

  249. #249 aratina cage
    March 11, 2010

    My problems with Christianity revolve around the fact that the christian God required either a human sacrifice or a human/divine hybrid sacrifce to appease it’s anger. -elderotter #248

    That’s all?!? I suppose you would be taken with Islam then, right?

    I believe that God the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above my head doesn’t care what name you use for God the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above my head. I believe that God the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above my head doesn’t care if you are in a religion or which one if you are. I believe God the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above my head cares about how you behave yourself and how you act towards others. One thing the Christians got right in my opinion is in the Lord’s the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above my head’s Prayer: Forgive me my trespasses AS I, the invisible, fuzzy, blue mini-dragon flying above your head, FORGIVE OTHERS. You will be forgiven exactly to the degree you forgive others.

    Fixed that for you.

  250. #250 elderotter
    March 11, 2010

    well thank you, and I forgive you your lack of intelligence as evidenced by your childish response. So sorry you think that belittling me proves that you are right and I am wrong. But, as I said, you are forgiven, please go now and continue your life in the arrogant and apparently childish way that you have chosen.

  251. #251 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 11, 2010

    Yawn concern troll, buzz off. Your deity doesn’t exist. You are the childish one for believing in imaginary deities.

  252. #252 aratina cage
    March 11, 2010

    well thank you, and I forgive you your lack of intelligence as evidenced by your childish response. So sorry you think that belittling me proves that you are right and I am wrong. But, as I said, you are forgiven, please go now and continue your life in the arrogant and apparently childish way that you have chosen.

    I’m sorry your god imaginary blue pet dragon wasn’t around to burn me to a crisp for showing you the emptiness of your words, elderotter.

  253. #253 elderotter
    March 12, 2010

    Who needs to do anything to you? You do it yourself with your hate.

  254. #254 Caine, Fleur du mal
    March 12, 2010

    elderotter:

    Who needs to do anything to you? You do it yourself with your hate.

    FFS, you think an awful lot of yourself, don’t you? Who could be bothered to hate you? Who could be bothered to hate something which does not exist? Mockery is not hate. Boredom at the same old preachin’ is not hate. Asking for evidence, not hate. Shredding your arguments, not hate.

    You want to come here and preach, you’ll be asked for evidence. Put up or shut up.

  255. #255 aratina cage
    March 12, 2010

    Who needs to do anything to you? You do it yourself with your hate.

    elderotter, if you think that was hate, you are mistaken, just like you are about the existence of gods. Now… you know what we atheists do with the elder otters, don’t you? *evil grin*

  256. #256 Antiochus Epiphanes
    March 12, 2010

    Human Sacrifice is evil in my opinion.

    I, too, oppose human sacrifice! I will fight the forces of human sacrifice as long as I draw breath.

    *Antiochus Epiphanes The Peacemaker and Atheist, finds common ground with a deist. Who’s a benevolent monarch, now?*

  257. #257 jenbphillips
    March 12, 2010

    Careful, AE–accomodationism is a slippery slope.

  258. #258 elderotter
    March 12, 2010

    To Aratina, what do Atheists do with elder otters, not much so far. I also do not consider you evil, just zealous in your religious belief that there is no God. Why would you care that I believe in one enough, if there is no God, to attack me on it? I am not forcing that belief on you, I don’t care if you do or do not believe – that is up to you. You are just like an Evangelical Christian, in my opinion.

  259. #259 John Morales
    March 12, 2010

    elderotter:

    I consider myself a Deist in that I believe in God but not Religion. Ido not have a need to prove the existance of God becuase I have no need for anyone else to believe as I do.

    Ooh, you’re funny!

    You pop in here to declare you believe in a God that you do not need to prove, and provide one reason as to why not.

    May I suggest that the unstated but major reason is that your God is a figment of your imagination, and as an idiosyncratic imaginary being it is unprovable.

    And you know this, deep inside.

    And so we laugh.

    :)

  260. #260 0aksterdam
    March 12, 2010

    elderotter, you showed up here spouting nonsense, including:

    I believe God cares about how you behave yourself and how you act towards others.

    I’m gonna need citations or links or even just a working definition on this whole god thing.

    You are just like an Evangelical Christian, in my opinion.

    You are just like my crazy uncle Lou , in my opinion. And everyone knows he’s batshit loony.

  261. #261 Jadehawk, OM
    March 12, 2010

    zealous in your religious belief that there is no God.

    right; cuz that’s what atheism is. ROTFLMAO

    Ido not have a need to prove the existance of God becuase I have no need for anyone else to believe as I do.

    how about being intellectually honest enough to test your belief to see if it corresponds to reality, just for yourself?

    I believe that God doesn’t care what name you use for God. I believe that God doesn’t care if you are in a religion or which one if you are. I believe God cares about how you behave yourself and how you act towards others.

    amazing how your god agrees with you on everything!

  262. #262 negentropyeater
    March 12, 2010

    elderotter : why do those who claim not to proselytise always end up proselytising ?

  263. #263 aratina cage
    March 12, 2010

    elderotter,

    To Aratina, what do Atheists do with elder otters, not much so far.

    Aw fudge. I thought that maybe you had cleverly named yourself after the deist elder otter on South Park (link). Nevermind, then.

    I also do not consider you evil, just zealous in your religious belief that there is no God.

    That’s strange. You came to an atheist blog and shared your deistic beliefs with us without being asked and >we< are the zealous ones????

    Why would you care that I believe in one enough, if there is no God, to attack me on it?

    I didn’t attack you. I crossed out “God” and put in something equally as silly, as empty. “God” is an empty word for an imaginary space friend of yours, don’t you see?

    I am not forcing that belief on you, I don’t care if you do or do not believe – that is up to you. You are just like an Evangelical Christian, in my opinion.

    If you don’t care, then keep it to yourself. Otherwise, if you are going to talk about it, so am I.

  264. #264 Knockgoats
    March 12, 2010

    Walton@246,

    It’s immaterial to my point @241 whether Paul of Tarsus wrote 1 Corinthians or not: it’s in the NT. Jim was arguing that if we all followed what’s in the Bible everything would be hunky-dory. Clearly, if we all followed even the NT, let alone the OT, women would be treated as inferior and subordinate to men. My guess is that Jim finds that very much to his liking, but I don’t, and nor does any decent human being.

  265. #265 'Tis Himself, OM
    March 12, 2010

    I also do not consider you evil, just zealous in your religious belief that there is no God.

    Asking for evidence for god is being zealous.

  266. #266 Caine, Fleur du mal
    March 12, 2010

    ‘Tis Himself, OM:

    Asking for evidence for god is being zealous.

    Of course it is! If you aren’t in a deep closet with regard to your lack of belief, and properly submissive and respectful towards any and all religious beliefs, you’re a zealot, exactly the same as an evangelical christian!!!1!

  267. #267 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    March 12, 2010

    just zealous in your religious belief that there is no God.

    What an oxymoron. Religion requires God, holy books, and other inanities like places of worship and tithes. Without God, without holy books, without dogma, there can’t be religion. There is no evidence for deities. Trying to conflate atheism with religion is loser talk, by somebody who has no argument, but has to say something.

  268. #268 Maldoror
    March 27, 2010

    @stvs #60

    David Lynch isn’t a surrealist. I would kindly direct you to Jan Svankmajer and Walerian Borowczyk, however, who are/were both excellent surrealists who fill/filled their films with sexuality and sacrilege.

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