By Joe Pachinko
“And God said that the skin would be FLAYED from the sinners faces,” the preachers’ voice barked out of the car radio, “And right here, in Deuteronomy it says ‘And the LORD shall see…the dung of the fields will be smeared across the faces of the non-believer…” I turned the radio off and wondered if the dung of the fields would be smeared over the faces of the non-believers before or after the skin was flayed off. Though flaying the skin off AFTER smearing it with dung seems like a waste of perfectly good dung. Nonetheless, these biblical punishments never seem to strike good Christians as unreasonable coming as they do from a merciful, loving, invisible, bearded all-powerful superhero buddy in the sky who will kill you, or roast you in Hell for all eternity if you don’t love him back.
Many U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan now wear patches on their uniforms that say “Pork Eating Crusader” in English and Pashto along with a picture of a medieval knight gnawing on a ham hock. This sends the true message to the Afghan people, “We are not here to ‘Spread Democracy’, or win ‘Hearts and minds’, we’re here to kill you and take your shit because you are not Christians.” I won’t go into the idea that one death, ONE DEATH in the name of Jesus is too many and renders the whole idea of Christianity worthless, not to mention the MILLIONS of deaths, because the loving Christians will then come and kill ME in the name of their loving god. Kind of like killing for Mahatma Ghandi, or Dr. Martin Luther King. “You don’t believe in loving your fellow man so now I’m gonna KILL YOU in the name of GHANDI!”
The YAHOO news had a headline the other day, “Is Atheism in America on the Rise?” as if this was something really important and terrible. I hate to tell you this, it’s not. In truth, it hardly matters, people who don’t believe in the Christian god will go on killing each other anyway for other reasons. By the way, I should state for the record that I am NOT an atheist. I simply don’t care whether or not there is some human invented, anthropomorphic God with a beard, or blue skin, or a necklace of skulls, or horns on its’ head, or a halo, or octopus tentacles coming out of its’ ears that loves some people and hates others. It’s just not an important question. That is NOT to say that there isn’t much on Earth and in the Universe that is sacred, or holy, or worthy of reverence, it’s only that it is beyond our ability to define it or put a beard on it. And it does not listen to us.
One thing that does bother me is people who CLAIM to be atheists but talk about Jesus the man and how wonderful he was, a good man etc. Like this….
Atheist: “I don’t believe in god, but I think Jesus was a good man.”
Me: “Um, you know there’s no proof that Jesus ever existed.”
Atheist: “Oh he existed. He was anti-corporate greed and wanted everybody to love one another.”
Me: “Yeah. Cool, but there’s no evidence other than the bible that he existed, so you’re taking it on faith.”
Atheist: “No. It’s not faith, I’m an atheist. I just believe he existed.”
Me: “That’s faith.”
Atheist: “No. It’s not faith, I’m an atheist.”
Me: “But you ‘BELIEVE’ Jesus existed?”
Atheist: “Yes. He was a good man.”
Me: “And his mother was a virgin?”
Atheist: “No, that’s preposterous.”
Me: “Well, if you’re going to accept his existence based on what the bible said, then you have to accept all the other things in there like the Red Sea parting, and people coming back from the dead, people turning into pillars of salt, turtles singing, Balaam’s ass speaking…”
Atheist: “What’s that part about the turtles?’
The point here is that even among “atheists” the social programming is so strong that they are unable to completely give up on Christian ideology. There is as much proof of Jesus’ existence as there is for the existence of Santa Claus. But more importantly, IT IS NOT THE FUCKING POINT! It doesn’t matter if Jesus existed or not. Yes, love one another, don’t kill, don’t be cruel. There doesn’t have to be some magic supernatural being telling you to do it. Don’t love each other because Jesus said to do it. Love each other because it’s the right thing to do. As for me, I don’t love anything, especially dogs and cats and small children, and flowers, and poetry, and vegetarians, and Christmas, but that’s me. I also think that less people have been killed in the name of Santa Claus than Jesus but I could be wrong.
I will leave you with the words of Richard Dawkins, the famous British evolutionary biologist…
“I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
Camp Climax, California
April 28th, 2012