Sunday, May 19, 2013

God's Version of Peace

"As you approach a town to attack it, first offer its people terms for peace. If they accept your terms and open the gates to you, then all the people inside will serve you in forced labor. But if they refuse to make peace and prepare to fight, you must attack the town. When the LORD your God hands it over to you, kill every man in the town. But you may keep for yourselves all the women, children, livestock, and other plunder. You may enjoy the spoils of your enemies that the LORD your God has given you." - Deuteronomy 20:10-14

You accept the terms of "peace" and still get forced into labor.

A Brief History of Religion

My next series of posts on this blog will be outlining the world's major religions.

Topics will include:

The Major Mediterranean & Middle Eastern Religions
  • Polytheism
  • Judaism
  • Christianity
  • Islam
The Major Asian Religions
  • Buddhism
  • Hinduism
  • Confucianism
  • Daoism
  • Shintoism
Other minor topics include:
  • Religions in Africa before Christianity & Islam
  • Religions in the Americas before Christianity
  • Religions in Europe before Christianity
Each post will include the following information:
  • How the religion developed
  • How the religion became popular
  • Where the religion became popular
  • When the religion became popular
  • How the religion spread
  • Ways in which the religion changed
  • The impact the religion had on the culture of civilizations
  • Important beliefs of the religion
  • Sacred text of the religion
  • & other important events during the history of the religion
Stay tuned to learn exactly how the major religions have impacted the world!
Also, stay tuned for a special post relating to this series!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Atheism and Communism: Is There a Link?

One common stereotype pushed forward by Christians is that all atheists are "commies." In this post, we will discuss why this stereotype exists and why it shouldn't.

In the early 20th century, two German philosophers, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, developed the political philosophy of Marxism. Karl Marx believed that there was a class struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletarians. He theorized that when the bourgeoisie class overextended its power the enraged proletarians would overthrow the social system and create a classless society. 

Marxism soon inspired the economic system of socialism, which is very similar to Marxism itself, in which all industry and means of production are owned by a cooperative group of people benefiting equally from the profit earned.

The next key to this puzzle is what the economic system of socialism inspires: communism. Communism is the political system in which the government supports and controls a socialist economy.

The first communist regime was in Russia. Vladimir Lenin, leader of the Bolshevik party, took power after the October revolution in 1917 and started the first communist form of government in history. Americans saw the communist government in Russia as illegitimate, and they also saw the destruction of Russia's economy which was caused by communism. 

Americans labeled the communists as evil, and the reign of Lenin's successor, Stalin, during the Cold War only helped their case. Later in the twentieth century, the rest of the world began to gain even more knowledge about the tragedies which happened in the Soviet Union during the Cold War, and when the Christians found out about Stalin's and Lenin's atheism, they immediately spread the news that atheism was the cause of their evil deeds.

The Christians chose to ignore reason again, however, because Marxism was in no way inspired by Marx's irreligiosity, as it is only an economic theory, and communism is based off of Marxism.

PERSONAL NOTE: Socialism and Capitalism both have their faults; in socialism, it seems to me that there is not enough competition to inspire innovation, and in capitalism, it seems that there is always a great imbalance between the upper class and lower class. 

Share your comments below on which structure of economy you believe works best.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Silly Christian, Science is For Atheists

It was a normal day at school until the Spanish class got into a conversation about time travel.

The conversation had begun when the professor said, "just imagine being able to see into the past."

At which point Jack, the atheist, felt it was necessary to enlighten the class that we could in fact see into the past and even millions of years into the past every night when we see stars.

After the class realized the reality of this fact, the conversation changed to a discussion of whether we could ever travel faster than the speed of light.

The professor said imagine seeing something happen here on earth and rushing faster than the speed of light to be able to see it again on Mars or even Pluto.

The mention of the planet Pluto perplexed one of the Christians in the class who felt the need to blurt out, "I thought Pluto didn't exist no more[sic]."

Needless to say, the people who were actually paying attention to the conversation, even some of the less mentally challenged Christians, face palmed, and Jack, the atheist, gave the girl a "dafuq?" face.
The girl, suddenly noticing all of the face-palming going on, attempted to remedy her mistake by saying, "I was just kidding." This explanation was hardly sufficient, however, and even the most mentally challenged Christian in the room could see right through it.

*This is based on a true story.

Leave any questions and comments in the designated area, and share your own "dafuq?" stories below. Peace until next time.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

'Murica is a Christian Nation

"The constitution is a religious document."
"The constitution grants rights to Christian sects only."
"This is a Christian nation."

All of these are claims you may hear from the religious of this nation, and in this article, we will discuss how to counter all of them with evidence from history and the constitution itself.

I. The Constitution is a Religious Document

One common claim of many fundamentalist Christians is that the constitution is a religious document. Unfortunately for them, they are wrong; who would have guessed that the "fundies" got it wrong again?

The constitution is a secular document and was inspired by enlightenment ideas, which began to develop in Europe and European colonies during the 18th century. The ideas of the enlightenment caused many revolutions and independence movements throughout the former European colonies in the Americas, the American revolution was one of the most successful attempts at reform.

The enlightenment was the change in the political philosophy of Europeans. It began at the time when kings, such as Louis XIV and Ivan the terrible, were seeking to consolidate their power under the crown and eliminate all aristocratic influence in their countries. The kings at this time claimed they had the divine right of kings endowed to them by god. This enraged many aristocratic nobles, who began attempting political reforms to limit the power of the king; these reforms caused the birth of new political ideas which removed god and religion from politics entirely such as "the social contract" which greatly influenced the writers of our constitution, which is itself totally void of any mention of god.

II. Freedom of Religion means Freedom of Christianity

Despite the absurdity of many fundamentalists' claims, the constitution does not mention freedom of religion anywhere. The Bill of Rights, otherwise known as the first ten amendments to the constitution, does however, so we'll give Christians the benefit of the doubt that they actually meant to say the Bill of Rights.

The Bill of Rights grants all people the freedom of religion, and although we could leave it at that because that is exactly what it says, we'll further prove our case by enlisting the help of another source, The Treaty of Tripoli.

We see the true opinion of John Adams, who was himself a founding father of this nation and one of the authors of the constitution, in the Treaty of Tripoli when he states:

   "As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims],—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Mohammedan] nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries."

III. This Is A Christian Nation
Out of all the claims of fundamentalists that we have mentioned so far, this one is the only one with a slight bit of validity.

While it is true that Christianity is the most popular religion among America's citizens, it is not true that America is a Christian nation. As we have seen in the previous sections, the constitution is not based on Christianity, and the freedom of religion applies to all religions and sects.

Leave all comments and questions in the comment section below. All people, regardless of religion, are encouraged to do so. Until next time, peace to all of humanity!