Category Archives: Religion, Lore & Superstition

Jack Chick Dies…

Date: October 27, 2016

Jack Chick, creator and owner of Chick Tracts, died on October 23, 2016 at age 92.

01) The Infamous Jack Chick Dies

“Jack Chick, infamous author of Dark Dungeons a comic that kicked off the literal witch and demon hunting of RPG players that began in the 80’s and still persists to this day, has died.”

Who was Jack Chick? – HowStuffWorks NOW:

02) Christian cartoon tract creator Jack Chick dies at 92

“LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jack T. Chick, whose cartoon tracts preached fundamentalist Christianity while vilifying secular society, evolution, homosexuality, and the beliefs of Catholics and Muslims, has died. He was 92.”

Oh, I absolutely remember Chick Tracts…They could be extremely messed up. They were all about fundamentalist Christian indoctrination.

One church my family attended…there was this entire wrack on the wall, filled with these things.

They were pushed as a way of converting non-believers.

I had forgotten about the Dungeons & Dragons thing…But yes…During the 80’s, this was a major panic going through the fundamentalist Christian church.

A memory I’ve shared before on this…is the time my dad made us throw a Christmas gift from our aunt and uncle, into the fireplace…It was the old Dungeons & Dragons board game [Hasbro, I think]…Burnt the entire thing up.

I was a bit cross over that…because I seriously wanted to learn how to play it…It intrigued me, but I never had a chance to play it.

I didn’t realize it was Jack who started that “Dungeons & Dragons is of the devil” lie…probably because I was so young at the time.

…Thanks a lot, Jack…

“Not Enough Parents”?…

Date: November 24, 2015

01) Grand Delusion ll

Note: Joe Cienkowski suggests that there haven’t been enough parents in existence, between “Noah’s ark” and today, to produce the population volume we have today.

Two things struck me.

The first has already been covered by another commentator. That being, we are keeping people alive much longer, which inflates the population.

The second is in response to “running out of parents”.

If Joe is presuming the obsolete “nuclear family” model, which produces two to three children per set of parents, to be the norm throughout history, then his suggestion here might make sense. Because you could at least gage it against some sort of model (no matter how naïve it’s usage). Thing is, that model is relatively new in human history, and already a thing of the past as the norm.

Here is one huge problem, however.

Even just going back 70 years in history, some sets of parents were having a dozen or more children between them. And this was by a time, when we were no longer losing half of our children before they hit the age of five years. I come from such a family, and have aunts, uncles and cousins I’ve never even met.

Even if they were just having five, six, seven, eight children, that is a lot in comparison to todays average. And it’s a lot to survive into adulthood. These two factors likely explain our population explosion.

It’s not a matter of simple mathematical division. Successful parental reproduction has always been a variable of wide flux. We cant just attribute “X” number of children to every set of parents, and decide there weren’t enough parents to produce and support them all.

As a side note, we also should not forget all the children produced outside of marriage…from one night stands…affairs…rape…from pairs of people, who aren’t necessarily going to assume the role of a parent.

Oh…and “Noah’s ark”, is about as unscientific and fairy tale like, as it gets. This cannot seriously be factored into anything, at all. It’s an incompetent starting point.

If we ever had a way of measuring all variables from the very beginning of life on this planet, taking into account the myriad of benefits versus challenges we faced in any era of time, we’d likely find there is nothing explicitly wrong, about where we’ve ended up today.

Lucky?…Yes. Extraordinary evolution?…Yes. But nothing explicitly wrong about it.

100 Renowned Academics Speaking About God…


Date: August 30, 2015

01) 100 Renowned Academics Speaking About God

“Published on Aug 18, 2014

The more scientifically literate, intellectually honest and objectively skeptical a person is, the more likely they are to disbelieve in anything supernatural, including god. This film is a compilation of some of the best examples of such individuals, and their thoughts on the divine. All the speakers featured are elite academics and professors at top institutions, some of whom are also Nobel Laureates.

This is part of a “Speaking About God” series by J Pararajasingham. You can see the other videos in the series here: Link

Highly thought provoking…and so, so, so many pieces of insight, which could be commented on here. This is worth watching.

Speaking About God Playlist:



Monster: When Companies Think ‘Wicked and Offensive’ Symbolism is Cool…

Date: November 17, 2014

…MONSTER Energy drinks are the work of SATAN!!!…

Does “monster” energy drink use satanic symbols, to market itself?…Does drinking this stuff have implications, where it comes to mass social “participation in satanic rituals”?

This whole thing has been floating around out there for a while…I first heard about it, probably a few years back.

I never liked “monster”, myself…as it had little effect on me…I looked upon it as being useless garbage, like overpriced, overhyped “red bull”.

I did, however, quite appreciate “rockstar”…and thought “venom” was quite potent, also…Though, I’ve given up all energy drinks, today.

…So, I am very disconnected from any loyalty to “monster”…but I still understand the fact, that energy drinks have become so prevalent in our culture.

This leaves certain marketing stunts, in a world where “wicked” symbols and “bad boy” concepts are socially popular, vulnerable to the notions of people who are searching for anything to make an issue over…and rile up people of their own mindset.

Have people behind “monster” intentionally worked to make the masses, participate in some informal “satanic ritual”, in the process of buying and consuming their product?

I guess we would have to ask them, before we could honestly make a decision…but does it even matter?

Even if the people behind “monster” believed in it’s credibility…that does not make it real…And the same holds true for religious people, who think anything of substance is actually happening with this.

…I would put forward the suggestion, that it is an empty act…and it holds no relevance, beyond what we as individuals make of it.

I would also suggest, that it is delusional for anyone to put all these symbols on an aluminum can of energy drink, in anticipation that it “worships satan” [or whatever it is supposed to do], or has any concrete effect at all.

In other words…I suggest that this whole issue, is nothing more than mindless nattering, by busybodies who have nothing better to do with themselves…So they find social oddities like this to focus on, to cause social angst over.

As a funny aside…

…Being somebody who almost universally drank these things through a straw in the can [hence, never even having need to tip the can/cross upside down]…I have to ask about the status, and the degree of interpreted offense committed by those of us who use a straw…

…Are we spared from participation in this alleged “ritual”?

Net Neutrality and “Neo-Atheism”: A Few Comments…

Date: November 14, 2014

Since I didn’t really have the time when I was posting these, I wanted to add a few personal comments about the contents of two earlier posts…

…Obama Proposes Surprisingly Strong Net Neutrality Laws…

I’ve been reluctant to say much about the net neutrality issue, largely because of the conflicting messages which have been flying around out there.

I’ve seen sources claiming that net neutrality was an attempt of government, at seizing control over the internet…and that this would result in the government having power to dictate accessibility [ie: the speed of access] to any website.

…I’ve also seen it claimed, that net neutrality supposedly was an underhanded stunt by the corporations…to get the government to allow them to do as they pleased, and treat their customers in highly discriminatory ways [ie: uneven speed of access].

…Then there is what Cenk Uygur is saying…that net neutrality is an attempt to stop internet service providers from being able to diminish [or enhance] the service to individual customers, based on subjective decisions or failure to pay additional tolls.

To me, it has been confusing as to just what the context is of this neutrality, and who it is being directed towards…the common internet users, or the telephone companies and ISPs?

Of course…it has dawned on me, that there is likely a lot of disinformation floating around out there…and that it is meant to confuse people…And given the stakes of this issue…I find that to be an outrage.

Of course, there has never been any question about this…No telephone company or ISP should ever be allowed to mess with your internet speed, in any way that treats you unequal to other customers…This is a “no brainer”…Allowing preferential treatment, is a recipe for internet disaster…probably for the majority of it’s users. It will likely run a lot of people and services out of business…effectively evicting them from the internet.

It is just wrong to allow that to happen.

…Reza Aslan – Bigotry, Fundamentalism and Neo-Atheism in the Media…

Note: This is a continuation of the Sam Harris, Bill Maher and Ben Affleck incident, from a few months back. Cenk, who has been adding to this discussion in ways that enhance the discussion, pledged to try and get involved people on for an interview…This is one such interview.

I am very glad to see Cenk carrying this discussion forward…I’ve been looking forward to this, for a while.

Cenk also had Sam Harris on, in a three hour interview I believe…but I’ve not watched that one yet…I’ll post it here soon, I’m sure.

I found this interview with Reza Aslan to be positive and refreshing…because what gets expressed here, is sensible and down to earth…Plus, I love the respectful atmosphere and exchanges…This is the kind of thing, which all conflict needs. These two weren’t fighting over anything…They were trying to mutually understand…They were really listening to each other, and responding in a constructive way. This is communication at it’s best.

It is an excellent interview…And I appreciated receiving the insight of these two.

Personally…I’ve been a self aware atheist, for a rather large span of my life…And I’ve been on both sides of the fence, with a handful of transitional years as buffer…

…I’ve read Sam Harris…I’ve read Richard Dawkins…I’ve greatly appreciated Bill Maher…

…But I’ve never personally bought into the so called “new atheist” thing.

Richard Dawkins in particular…his book “The God Delusion”, was a pure joy to read…because he is such a gifted communicator…And if you can get past the title…I highly recommend the book…

…But this has never meant, that I consider Richard to be a spokesperson for me, nor to be my leader…And as the years have passed, I’ve found myself at times disappointed…to see even Richard sink into hyperbole.

…I am afraid, Sam may have fallen off the edge, too…Maybe in a worse way, I don’t know.

Bill…I think some things he has said, have been taken out of context…or worded badly, and misunderstood…interpreted in a way, Bill was not [to my mind] meaning…I mean, Bill has religious theists on his show all the time…He has always come off as quite fair and tolerant, on the average…Maybe he does not have the most solidly rounded viewpoint all the time…but he does have some damn solid points, and is speaking about issues which are on people’s minds. It is not wrong, to air these things in a public forum.

Atheism, or theism…we all arrive at these states of mind, based on complicated social and personal factors…And whatever you adhere to…it is a deeply personal issue, based on your own circumstances…and your own needs in that period of time.

I am not going to suggest that between atheism and theism, anything is entirely correct…or anything is entirely wrong [with the exception of violence, and extremist intolerant behavior]…But we do draw upon what we need, in order to survive…And I think that is the fundamental crux, of why theism is so strongly embraced.

For some of us…theism does not work, in filling our needs…for giving us what we need, to keep moving forward in life.

I agree that people need hope, joy and positivity in their lives, to keep them well balanced…I just don’t agree, that it has to come from theism.

One thing I will never do…is mock or belittle people for being theists…

…I might explain in detail, why I am not a theist…but I wont seek out others, in order to enflame them…It is not my place, to tell you that you cannot be a theist.

At times…the busybody nature of “the new theists”, has bothered me…Because I see some of them, as causing unnecessary problems.

…Just because we don’t like everything about religion, doesn’t mean that the world is going to be so much better, in it’s total absence. There are pros and cons to having religion…just as there would be pros and cons to not having it.

We cannot look upon the eradication of religion, as being viable.

…It is not…People will always need something.

Instead…we should be working to help theists identify the sociopaths and the deranged, who are usurping roles of leadership within their organizations…so as to help theists cleans their ranks, and heal their social integrity.

So long as you afford me [and my kind] the same respect…I have not the first problem, with whatever you are convicted to believe about “the meaning of life”.

Theists and atheists can coexist wonderfully…For most of us as individuals…we are not the elements of problem.

…It’s those who commit extreme and hostile actions, who are the problem.

I am not a “new atheist”…I am a practical atheist…

…And I like it, whenever other practical atheists show themselves.

Reza Aslan – Bigotry, Fundamentalism and Neo-Atheism in the Media…

Date: November 13, 2014

…Reza Aslan – Bigotry, Fundamentalism and Neo-Atheism in the Media…

“Published on Oct 13, 2014
Professor Reza Aslan is the author of the New York Times #1 Bestseller “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth,” and is a writer and scholar on religious studies.

Is there a media bias against Islam? Reza Aslan points to certain media pundits and hosts who call all religion bad, but Islam “the worst.” Is it bigoted when pundits like Sam Harris call any non-extremist Muslims “not real” Muslims? Are some media commentators denouncing and defining Christian and Muslim extremism themselves fundamentalist bigots? Where is the balance between when interpreting holy text? What is the difference between atheism and neo-atheism? Is there such a thing as the one “truth?”

Reza Aslan sits down with The Young Turks’ Cenk Uygur to discuss and debate the state of religious commentary in media, religious ignorance, the removal of religion from society and neo-atheism, what it really means to be religious, picking-and-choosing attitudes across the board, and much more on fundamental misunderstandings of religion.”

Happy Fourth of July, 2014!…


Date: July 04, 2014

Happy Fourth of July, to all who observe it!

…I happened upon a fascinating episode of On Being, dealing with the United States early history…the founding fathers…separation of church and state…and more…

…Thought I’d share it with you…

…On Being: Steven Waldman and Philip Hamburger — The Long Experiment of American Democracy…

…Direct Download Link…

I love the no nonsense talk about our religious roots…Yes it was there…Yes, it was intentional…But at the same time, it was extremely messy and sometimes outright nasty…cruel and inhumane, even. Eventually, leaders rejected formal national religion…and took a new path.

No…as an atheist, I cannot deny religious roots in the U.S….And atheists would be foolish, to deny it…Thing is, this country eventually wizened up and decided people should be free to follow their own spiritual path…be it religious or not.

…We should be grateful for that…This is what we should celebrate, and champion as atheists…

…This nation rose above it’s past, in that regard…It had enough collective sense to evolve…Hallelujah!

That is one of the best features of this country…because it can leave everybody with hope and possibilities.

Contrary to what some may wish us to believe…the United States religious history, was not a totally wonderful love story…substantially far from it, in fact.

It is refreshing to hear people give a level headed discussion, of this nations past.

As a nation…we all need to stop lamenting on “what the founding fathers intended [for us]”…

…Though I thank each of them for what they did…reality is…they are long dead now…As such, they no longer make decisions effecting the lives of people like you or I.

It doesn’t matter whether George Washington believed in god…whether he thought churches should rule over us…whether he snorted cocaine…or whether he would have liked Twinkies over Ding Dongs, given the chance to taste and decide.

…Even great dead men, don’t have the authority to make decisions for the living.

We have moved beyond, whatever it is they might have envisioned…And maybe it is time, that we all started dealing with that reality?…and the strengths and weaknesses of that reality?


On Being: Jim Bradley and Michael Ruse — The Evolution of the Science-Religion Debate…

Date: June 29, 2014

“We tend to frame our cultural conversation about science and religion as a debate — two either/or ways of describing reality. With mathematician Jim Bradley and philosopher Michael Ruse, we trace a quieter evolution of science and religion in interplay — not a matter of competing answers, but of complementary questions with room for humanity, nuance, and humor.”

…On Being: Jim Bradley and Michael Ruse — The Evolution of the Science-Religion Debate [Podcast Page]…

…Direct Episode Download Link…

Interesting show…

It was working just fine, when I sat down and put these links together for a post…though I never successfully downloaded a copy of this episode. [a website I intend to explore more deeply, for possible future use] started having issues, before I got this post completed. While I was trying to test out these links [the “direct download”, in particular], SoundCloud just sort of bit the dust…The service appears dead in the water, at the moment I am posting this.

Presumably, they will get things back in working order soon.

I went through the trouble…so, I am posting this.

Hell House…


Date: May 12, 2014

…SnagFilms: Hell House…

Back when I was in high school, it seems like that was when I first remember hearing about this “hell house”. I may have seen some type of graphical depictions of it previously…but yesterday is the first time I really sat down and watched an in depth documentary on it.

Some of the behaviors documented in this movie…if they were not being done in the name of Jesus Christ, or some other widely accepted social trend…they would literally be looked upon, as some form of mental illness…

I strongly suspect, even amongst the religious…most would recognize much of what is going on in this documentary, as being cultish style behavior.

Watching this…I realize, as I have most of my life, that various sects of religion are modern proof…that just about anything…any belief or practice, can be institutionalized into our culture. Even if it is poorly constructed…it just needs to reach that tipping point, where enough people are reaffirming it amongst themselves…

…This explains why so many improbable, and sometimes crazy, stories get repeated, in attempts to convince people of the rightness of religion…and by entirely serious people, who maintain a straight face.

It does not matter how impossible something may factually be…so long as enough people agree to ignore the fact, that something is impossible…Because that group of people professes belief, more individuals feel justified in believing, also.

I feel most badly for the kids in this documentary…

…Formerly being a kid in that general type of setting…I can vouch for the fact, that they really are haplessly set up, in all of this. Many of them do not even conceive of anything different, outside what that church has taught them to believe…which is why we see some of them speaking about “the evils” of today, in a very matter of fact manner. They get taught these sorts of things all of their lives, right alongside [and in the exact same environment] where they learn math, social studies, grammar, science…much of which is melded with [and sometimes corrupted by] religion, in the special textbooks and materials which get used to teach.

You are not really allowed to question or deny religious beliefs of the elders…and you are kept so deeply cocooned in that isolated environment, that you just don’t form any normal, healthy links with the outside world.

A lot of us have a harder time functioning in the world, because of this…We are not prepared to actually go out into, deal with and live in, the real world. On the contrary…this experience genuinely hobbles you…especially if you leave the church, and you don’t even have that support structure anymore.

You know…it’s not that I am against the existence of religion…and I do understand it’s allure…

…It’s that I am tired of these religious organizations, which behave as though they own other human beings…or as though it were okay, that they conduct business like “the borg”…and they see nothing wrong, with robbing people of their individuality, interests and pursuit of personal needs, in the interest of serving the organization’s rigid social goals.


Frontline: Secrets of the Vatican…

Date: February 26, 2014

01) Link

Very interesting, to say the least…

My views on sex abuse in the catholic church, have been repeated enough times…to where I don’t really feel up to stating them again, at this moment.

It’s not shocking, however, that homosexuality is so prevalent at the Vatican…nor in the catholic church…

…If you are born that way, but you just don’t believe you can actually live a life in harmony with your needs…then a “celibate” option like the catholic clergy, may very well be an attractive place to go…at least in theory. If you are trying not to be true to your nature, then hey…that is an institution, which provides a place to hide said nature…to deny said nature, out in the open…even if vaguely so.

…Problem is…human nature is much stronger, than the catholic church could ever hope to be.

This, in my opinion…is why all of these people who have flocked to the catholic church, in order to hide and deny themselves of their true nature, has bitten the catholic church in its own behind.

Sexual repression in the bigger picture, is an unrealistic goal…We endlessly see this, time and time again.

If the catholic church wishes to host this type of person, in a sexually repressed environment…of course, it is going to blow up in the churches face…time and time again.

May I suggest to any out there who are like me…but who also are pursuing a life and career in some religious institution, which holds rigid views on human sexuality…that such a choice may lead to many unethical consequences?…and maybe, you should place yourself elsewhere?

…Maybe you should think long and hard, before deciding what you can reasonably leave behind and what you can live without?…

…The rest of your life is a long time, to live with ill weighed decisions.