Some People Will Believe Anything

KIM JONG-IL

     The season ending episode of Bagging Up will be posted tomorrow. This entry will be about the late North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-Il. I am not concerned with his politics or human rights record; there are evil people all over this planet. What fascinates me about the “Supreme Leader,” is the weird propaganda that he created.

I will discuss my five favorite Kim Jong-Il “facts!” (Feel free to Google some of the other propaganda creations!)

#5) DIVINE BIRTH:

“Legend has it that a double rainbow and a glowing new star appeared in the heavens to herald the birth of Kim Jong Il, in 1942, on North Korea’s cherished Baekdu Mountain. Soviet records, however, indicate he was born in the Siberian village of Vyatskoye, in 1941. The people of North Korea, many of whom are reportedly battling famine, are apparently told that Kim’s birthday is celebrated throughout the world.” – Global Post

I don’t blame Kim for this one. The followers of Jesus can make up an unbelievable birth, why not the “Supreme Leader!”

 

#4) TALK ABOUT A RIM JOB:

“While Kim was on his famous 2001 train trip to Moscow, a Russian envoy who traveled with him said roast donkey and fresh lobsters were flown to the train every day.” – Global Post

I guess the saying has been proven to be correct; you are what you eat! (I’ll pass on the ass!)

 

#3) NO SHIT:

“It is reported that Kim’s official biography on the North Korean state web site, which has since been taken down, claimed that Kim did not defecate. Enough said.”  – Global Post

Maybe if someone handed Kim Jong-Il a laxative, he would still be alive today! (What a waste!)

 

#2) TIGER, EAT YOUR HEART OUT:

“In 1994, it was reported by Pyongyang media outlets that Kim Jong Il shot 38 under par on a regulation 18-hole golf course – including 5 holes in one! That score is 25 shots better than the best round in history, and is made even more amazing by the fact that it was his first time playing the sport. It’s said Kim Jong Il would routinely sink 3 or 4 holes in one per round of golf, and – lucky for the PGA – he has since given it up.” – http://hiddenunseen.blogspot.com

Thankfully for the professional golfers, the North Korea Open is closed to non-Communists! (I wonder how many mulligans were handed out during the round?)

 

#1) I THOUGHT I RECOGNIZED KIM IN THE RAP VIDEOS:

“For a few years in the early 1990s, it was confirmed by Hennessy that Kim Jong Il was it’s best customer, spending about $600,000 to $850,000 annually on the liquor. He is partial to the Paradis cognac, which can sell for over $700 per bottle. In comparison, the average North Korean makes about $1000 per year.” – Global Post

When rappers discuss sipping on Hennessey with Kim, I thought they were talking about some diseased-filled groupie. Who knew the songs are actually about sipping Hennessy with North Korea’s “Supreme Leader!”

 

***Bonus “Facts:”***

“Official records reportedly show that Kim learned to walk at the age of three weeks, and was talking at eight weeks. While at Kim Il Sung University, he apparently wrote 1,500 books over a period of three years, along with six full operas. According to his official biography, all of his operas are “better than any in the history of music.”  – Global Post

Too bad YouTube didn’t exist back in 1941 1942; Kim Jong-Il would have been an internet sensation! (Can someone please send me a link to the operas; I can’t seem to find them on Spotify!)

Kim Jong-Il was truly an original guy; mythical tales about a great figure? Gee, I wonder where I’ve heard that before! Obviously, his stories were fabricated, but we all know that religious claims are all true!

Today is December 21, 2011. In exactly one year, the world will end!!!

THE COUNTDOWN BEGINS!!!

@PeteTeix617

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The Revelation 3D

**********************3D Glasses Are Not Required**********************

[Our story continues from area 4181979.]

I meet Ackley, Cristoforo, and Rodrigo in the secret room. Everyone is re-energized. The tactic meeting is quick. Ackley is the most optimistic, but we all believe the strategy is solid. It is up to me to apply the game plan.

Ackley: “Be brave!”

Cristoforo: “The Revelator will not fail us!”

Rodrigo: “Remember the details! The twins are waiting for your arrival.”

Me: “I understand the responsibility that has been entrusted to me. I will not let disappoint the members of the FPB!”

[I leave and teleport to the VIP Lounge.]

Inside, I find Lu sitting alone.

Me: “Where is G?”

Devil: “He’ll be here shortly, he has to deal with some unrest in the Good Place.”

Me: “Unrest? Big brother always has to take care of business. What happened?”

Devil: “Well, there was a competition between the Christians, Jews, and Muslims. It was called Heaven Idol. There were three groups, varying in number, representing each faith. Obviously, it was a battle of the hymns. The Muslim team number 2, won with their powerful entry, Allah Holla! G is there trying to explain to the Jews and Christians that a hip hop hymn is allowed. They’ve been combing through the bible, looking for an answer, for a while now.”

Me: “Sounds like good times up there!”

Devil: “When I say boring, I mean boring!”

[We laugh.]

Devil: “Let’s get back to what you were saying earlier.”

Me: “What?”

Devil: “What’s this garbage about the big boss always having to take care of business?”

Me: “What? Everyone knows that you guys are twins, but it’s obvious—G is the big dog! The rest of us talk about it all the time. No one on earth loves you, except for the weirdo-devil-worshippers.”

Devil: “Is that right? You have no idea what you’re talking about…I have the same amount of power as him.”

Me: “I don’t know who has more power, but G has the respect, and he is the top dog. Look at your reputation…you’re the bad guy!”

Devil: “Let me stop this conversation because I don’t want to get angry. We’ll continue talking when G gets here.”

Me: “No problem. I know the big dog will back me up.”

Devil: “Yeah we’ll see about that.”

He was visibly upset. I could have egged him on, but I didn’t want to be on the receiving end of his temper. We switched the subject and enjoyed our blue label while waiting for God to arrive.

[In walks God.]

God: “Sorry I wasn’t able to make it here early, I’m sure you heard about the incident. Allah Holla! What you faithful bout ready to give…Dollars Dollars!”

Me: “No problem big dog. I know the boss has to handle his business! Don’t tell me Ja Rule is in the Good Place.”

God: “No, he wouldn’t last a second up there.”

[The Devil stood up, visibly agitated.]

Devil: “I think you need to straighten this kid out and let him know we’re equals and that I’m your partner!”

God: “Junior partner!” *Tony Montana Voice* [He laughed, I laughed. The Devil threw down his crystal glass.] God was stunned!

Me: “Easy there, number two. Calm down!”

God: “What the hell is wrong with you?”

Devil: [Yells.] “I’m tired of everyone thinking you’re the boss! When am I going to get my respect?”

God: “What are you talking about? No one said I was the boss.”

Devil: “Then what’s all this junior partner, bullshit?”

God: “I was joking…it’s Scarface, for crying out loud!”

Devil: “I’m tired of the jokes! From this day forth, I’m not taking this shit anymore. I am a boss too!”

Me: “That doesn’t make sense. Oligarchies don’t work. We need a monarchy. One ruler and G is the man for the job. If you don’t want to be number two, I’ll step in and you can be number three.”

[The Devil lunges at me, but God saves me.] {How Ironic!}

God: “Relax! Why are you taking out your anger on him? He has nothing to do with this. Clearly, this is an issue that has been bothering you for a long time.”

Devil: “Sorry Pete. I don’t mean to get carried away, but this is a sensitive issue for me.”

Me: “No problem. Maybe we should just drop the subject until Dr. Phil dies…he can help you work through the resentment!”

[The Devil lunges at me again!] {Thank God! (HA HA!)}

God: “Why do you keep going after him?”

Devil: [Yells.] “Because he’s been fucking with me all day!”

God: “C’mon Lu, it’s Pete—that’s what the kid does.”

Devil: “Don’t tell me to calm down. You’re not the boss of me.”

God: “Just relax.”

Devil: “Tell me to relax one more time and I’ll…”

God: “You’ll what?”

Devil: “Don’t push me.”

Me: “Cause I’m close to the edge.” [God laughs.]

God: “Hey Pete, chill for a little bit. The little girl is about to throw a tantrum.”

[The Devil shoves God up against the wall.]

The wall shakes, and a large white frame, encasing a painting of the sun, crashes to the ground.

God: [Yells out.] “Trustis!”

[I pick up the painting.]

Me: “The sun! C’mon Son!”

Devil: “That’s not the sun, dumbass!”

God: [Yells.] “Why don’t you just tell him everything?”

Devil: “You’re the one yelling out, Trustis! Don’t tell me what to do.”

God: “I’ll say whatever I want!”

[The Devil punches God in the temple.]

Thunder erupts! God lands on the ground, and his body becomes transparent. I get a quick glimpse of a small life form before he returns to his normal state.

Me: “What the hell…”

God: [In a booming voice.] “How dare you punch me! Take this!”

[He punches the Devil in the eye.]

Thunder fills the room. The same exact effect happens when the Devil hits the ground. The twins continue to fight. And each blow reveals more of their true selves, until their strong physiques no longer appear. Standing before me are two matching, two-feet tall, alien beings. Reality sets in and the twins notice that their true identities have been revealed. **This is where the reader gets to add to the story. Describe your own alien. Leave the description in the comment box, or pull out the old typewriter and have at it. Please place the finished copies in my favorite (P.O.) Box!**

God: “Look at what you did.”

Devil: “Me? You’re the idiot who thinks he is better than everyone.”

God: “I told you I was joking—we’re equals. You’re such a baby!”

[The Devil attempts to lunge at God, but I hold out my arm and stop him. He falls to the ground.]

Devil: “OW. What did you do that for?” [He begins to cry.]

Me: “What the hell is going on here? And why are you crying?”

Devil: “Because you hit me, and it hurts.” [Still sobbing.]

Me: “I didn’t hit you, I just extended my arm.”

God: “You gave him the Heisman!”

Me: “Why are you guys so wimpy all of a sudden? What’s a Trustis? And what’s with the weird transformation?”

God: “Well, I guess the cats out of the bag. Let me explain.”

Devil: [Shouts.] “No, nothing is happening until I get an apology. I didn’t do anything and Pete shoved me to the ground.”

[I shake my head.]

Me: “I can’t believe how soft you are being…I’m sorry.”

Devil: “Thank you. Apology…ACCEPTED!”

God: “Like I was saying before, we are what earthlings call, aliens. We are from the opposite end of the Universe. I would tell you the distance, but you wouldn’t be able to comprehend the number of light-years. There are trillions of galaxies in the Universe and ours is the furthest from earth. We arrived on the desolate planet a few millennia after it was formed. We are a fragile people, which is why Lu cried after you violently shoved him.”

[I begin to defend myself, but decide to let the matter go.]

Me: “Again, Lu. I’m sorry about the vicious shove. I don’t know what came over me.”

Devil: “We’re cool. It’s all good.”

God: “Our planet is called Credularous and our people are the Credularians. Trustis is the name of our star. The painting is an original Rembrandt, a reminder of our home.”

Me: “It looks just like the sun. How do I know you didn’t just have him paint the sun?”

Devil: “It actually is a depiction of the sun, Rembrandt never saw Trustis. They look similar so it really doesn’t matter.”

God: “Credularous is located in the Naïvao Solar system. Our Galaxy is named Gullibilitus.”

Me: “So why did you lie about aliens?”

Devil: “Because look at us. We are small and fragile. If everyone knew the truth, we would lose our ability to rule.”

Me: “So, did the two of you create the people on earth?”

God: “No! People evolved through the natural evolutionary process. When we first landed on earth, it was pretty much void of life forms, other than single-celled organisms.”

Devil: “Yeah, it was a great time. Watching bacteria, protists, fungi, and archaea; microorganisms rule!”

Me: “Why did you come to earth if the planet was basically deserted?”

God: “Our mission was not in search of life, we wanted the richest natural resource, and earth is full of it.”

Me: “These Blood Diamonds?” [I point to the wall.]

Devil: “No! Corundum!”

Me: “Corundum? We’re talking about Corundum? You mean to tell me, you traveled all the way across the Universe for Corundum. We’re not even talking about diamonds? We’re talking Corundum? Corundum? Everyone knows diamonds are the hardest minerals on earth. Corundum? I mean I can even understand Rubies or sapphires. But I can’t believe we’re talking about Corundum!”

Devil: “Relax Iverson. Diamonds are too hard. Our technology uses Corundum; it’s the ultimate mineral!”

Me: “Damn! Corundum?”

God: “Yes, Corundum!” (To all the ladies, the guy who gives you a Corundum ring, is indeed a keeper!)

Me: “What about the Fun Place and the Good Place? How do you control their existence and how does the afterlife work?”

God: “The places don’t actually exist. We use Corundum to create a hologram type effect, only far more superior. Everything you see seems real.”

Devil: “When life-forms die, their souls continue to exist. The souls are free to wander the Universe and learn all of the secrets. The ‘Dead’ exist in a different dimension. They can’t make contact with the living, but sometimes there are glitches. We simply keep the ‘dead’ in our ‘afterlife’ by controlling the mind.”

Me: “So you mean to tell me that I am free to travel the Universe and explore?”

God: “Yes!”

Me: “What about all the UFO sightings on earth?”

Devil: “I’d say, about eighty to eighty-five percent of the claims are complete bullshit. The others are real. It turns out that planet earth has the richest reserve of Corundum in the Universe. A great number of Credularians seek out the planet because of the Corundum. As we’ve noted, we are extremely fragile beings so sometimes our crafts crash land and the pilots die. There are government officials throughout the world who are a part of the massive cover-up. Whenever a craft is able to make a safe landing, I go to earth and send the Credularian away.”

Me: “Wow! That’s crazy! How many other life forms are there in the Universe?”

God: “Trillions multiplied by trillions. All types too! We are the most intelligent, so our people spread out to different planets and control the inhabitants by using our Corundum based technology. Part of our #winning strategy are the godly characters which we create. If you had attempted to fight with us when we first met, we could have been seriously injured. We are intelligent, but we lack physical strength. Our method of mind slavery is almost foolproof. We have to take off our hats to you for being able to out smart us. How did you figure out we were lying?”

Devil: “Yeah, it’s an amazing feat. No one has ever even come close to discovering the truth.”

Me: “I would love to take the credit, but I wasn’t alone. There is a secret society named the FPB. The group’s only mission is to uncover the truth. I was recruited because the members believe that I am some sort of Messiah, the Revelator.”

God: “That makes a lot of sense. Who are the members?”

Me: “Rodrigo is the leader and his second in command is Cristoforo. Ackley is also a high ranking member.”

Devil: “Et Tu Rodrigo?”

Me: “This is all unbelievable, but the FPB members are waiting for me to return with the information. Where do we go from here? I can’t turn my back on them.”

Devil: “We think it would be best to keep our secret and join us as the third ruler.”

Me: “That’s a great idea, but I can’t be a double agent. I swore my allegiance to the FPB and I will not abuse their trust. I’ll make a deal with you. I can reveal the truth to the people in the Fun Place, and the two of you can keep possession of the Good Place. Pharaohs, Pharaohs…LET MY PEOPLE GO!”

Devil: “Fuck! The Good Place people are sooooooooooooooooo boring!”

Me: “Don’t think of the current Good Place. Be creative and mix things up! The two of you can keep all the people who you judge to be candidates for the Good Place, but you must release the others.”

God: “That’s a brilliant idea. We accept your offer!”

[I exit the VIP Lounge for the last time!]

I return to area 4181979 and reunite with the guys. They are fascinated by the truth and we decide on the best way to free the others.

Ackley: “I think it will be best for us to reveal the truth, one area at a time.”

Rodrigo: “Agreed!”

Me: “Then it only makes sense to begin with area 1 and work our way out. Let the best people be freed first!”

Cristoforo: “The Revelator has spoken. Let his will be our command!”

[The End!]

********For those of you who witnessed the magic of the 3D technology, thank you for your continued support! ********

For those who were unable to experience the 3D effect, there is a reason. I struggled for several days attempting to figure out how I would be able to make this entry 3D. After searching high and low, I almost gave up. UNTIL…

I remembered a lesson from my past!

I turned to the last person anyone would expect. I turned to “god!” I prayed and I prayed and I prayed. (Dear “god,” good “god,” mighty “god,” good mighty “god.” Please be the good “god” and grant me the ability to make this latest entry a 3D post. Thank you good “god” who I fear!) Miraculously, my prayers were answered. “God” gave me the ability to create the exact 3D effect I begged for.

If you know “god,” you know there is a condition. The effect will only appear to those people who truly believe in my abilities. Only the believer in Peter Teixeira will be worthy enough to witness the greatness of the “lord.” Don’t worry. We are dealing with the “lord” so you know there is an express option. For those of you who are incapable of believing in me, there is a PayPal account set up, which will boost your belief points. The more you give, the better the effect will work!

Through “god,” ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!!

“’God’ is good. ALL THE TIME!”

@PeteTeix617

Close To Converting

My exodus from the Catholic Church was not one of those mythical “mutual” separations; the Church was hurt. I actually resulted to using the cliché explanation, “It’s not you, it’s me.” It was a difficult time for me; I was alone in the world, and faithless! On Sunday mornings, I often found myself wandering down the street to St. Patrick’s church just to see if I was missed. Eventually, I had to find the strength to move on; I didn’t have Catholicism but “god” was still in my corner. I was in search of a new faith, one which accepted me and my “god.” (My “god” was fun and he had a sense of humor.)

My investigation led me to many different religions, but I was never able to find the right one. (Religions are different from fish, there aren’t plenty in the sea!) I learned about Rastafari and almost joined, but eventual I couldn’t bring myself to become a believer.

I know what you’re thinking. “I know a few Rastas and they say Rastafarianism is a movement and not a religion!” That’s great; people say a lot of things, but I am applying anthropologist Anthony Wallace’s criteria for a religion.

The word Babylon is an extremely important term in the Rastafarian vocabulary. Babylon is not a place, and it doesn’t refer to the Ancient city conquered by Alexander the Great. (Nor does it refer to the Babylon club in the greatest movie of all-time Scarface!) In From Garvey To Marley, Noel Erskine writes,“Babylon represented the powers that were arranged against and sought to destroy poor people.” To the Rastas, Babylon includes the religions of the world, most notably, Christianity.

It is clear that the Rastafari movement is indeed a religion. The Rastas believe in an all-powerful “god,” and they also use the bible as the main scripture for the movement. Wallace’s anthropological definition of religion, clearly identifies Rastafari as a religion.

Wallace’s 13 Behaviors:

  1. Prayer – Addressing the Supernatural.
  2. Music – Dancing, singing, and playing instruments.
  3. Physiology Exercise – The physical manipulation of the psychological state.
  4. Exhortation – The existence of a middleman between people and supernatural beings.
  5. Reciting the Code – Mythology, morality and other aspects of the belief system.
  6. Simulation – Initiating things. Having power over objects, i.e. Voodoo dolls.
  7. Mana – Touching things. For example, the “holy” water in church.
  8. Taboo – Not touching things. Certain restrictions are followed.
  9. Feasts – Eating and drinking.
  10. Sacrifice – Offerings and fees.
  11. Congregation – Processions, meetings and congregation.
  12. Inspiration – Divine intervention.
  13. Symbolism – Manufacturing and use of sacred objects.

Anthony Wallace asserts, “It is the premise of every religion…that souls, supernatural beings, and supernatural forces exist.” Wallace considers his thirteen behaviors as the “substance of religion.” He acknowledges that his categories are not the only ones that can be used to define a religion. (Feel free to enlighten us with your own criteria!)

The word religion presents a problem for Rastas because it is associated with Babylon. Rastafarians view Christianity, the major religion in Jamaica, as counterproductive in the sense of dealing with the economic and social problems which plague the people. Rastas believe Christianity is designed by Babylon to keep the Blacks from improving their situation. Christianity teaches people to accept their position in life, in order to be rewarded in the after-life. Great concept, but Christianity cannot help to improve the lives of the oppressed people; their economic and social position will remain the same. The Rastas desired to establish a new way of thinking in hopes of improving the hardships they were faced with. (At this point I was so excited to become a Rasta!)

The Rastas began to read the bible and interpret it for themselves. The most problematic aspect of Christianity for Rastas is the role of the priest. Rastas believe in the concept of I-and-I, which is a personal relationship with “god” that every Rastafarian controls. Wallace states, “In every religious system, there are occasions on which one person addresses another as a representative of divinity.” Wallace refers to this person as the “exhorter.” Rastafarians do not have an exhorter who serves as a mediator between the individual and “god.” The Rastas believe in the constant connection between an individual and “god,” therefore the exhorter isn’t necessary.

The elders are usually consulted when a newcomer has trouble understanding the bible or some of the Rastafari beliefs, but the elder is not interpreting the bible for the person; he is merely being an assistant on their path to uncovering “god’s” word. Most importantly, the person seeking help is not obligated to agree with the interpretation of the elder. People can connect with “god” however they see fit.

Ennis Edmonds, who wrote Caribbean Religious History, views the Rastafari religion as “Reticulate,” but the fact that there is no leader or hierarchical structure doesn’t mean the movement is disjointed. Edmonds believes there is a unifying element to the religion based on “a fairly uniform system of beliefs.” There are different informal organizational structures in the religion, according to Edmonds. (I found this lack of structure to be freeing. There was no mandatory church on Sundays. Don’t Catholics know that we party on Saturdays?)

“Own Built,” describes Rastas who do not belong to any group. These Rastafarians follow the same beliefs, but practice on an individual level. The next level is called “houses” and “yards,” which are small groups led by an elder. The elder’s position is not to teach others what the bible says, but to inspire others to create their own understanding of the text and the fundamentals of the religion. The larger groups referred to as “mansions” have two separate categories: “churchical” ”statical.” The churchical emphasizes the religious aspect of the Rastafari movement, while the statical focuses on political and social problems. (I can already tell. Many of you are considering a conversion!)

Rastafarian rituals are called “grounding.” Grounding is defined by Edmonds as “informal instruction in Rasta precepts and ideology; the ritual process [reasoning] by which circles of like minded brethren are formed and maintained.” The gatherings in which grounding takes place are called “Nyabinghi I-ssembly” or “groundation.” The Nyabinghi contains some different aspects which fit into Wallace’s criteria for religion. Wallace’s behavior for touching things is called “Mana.” The Rastas believe in the concept of “ital levity,” which is a commitment to using things in their natural organic state. Rastafarians view drugs, alcohol, and processed foods as Babylon’s way of destroying the minds of black people. Rastas do use marijuana, called “Ganja,” and do not consider it a drug. Ganja is a natural herb and helps the Rastas to free their minds in order to clearly understand the oppressive nature of Babylon. (No, I did not consider marijuana use as a reason for my conversion to Rastafarianism. I listened to Nancy Reagan and said no to drugs! I do not smoke, except for an occasional cigar!)

Wallace uses not touching things, which he calls “Taboo,” as another criterion for identifying a religion. The Rastas do not permit the use of drugs or alcohol, and they do not eat processed foods. They look at unnatural things as taboos. Ganja is always smoked during the Nyabinghi because, according to Edmonds, Rastas say it “dispels gloom and fear, induces visions, and heightens the feelings, creating a sensation of fellow love and peace.” (Interesting! Maybe I’ll give this marijuana thing a try!)

Feasts, is another of Wallace’s behaviors which applies to the Rastafari Religion. The Nyabinghi always includes a meal that is shared by all the Rastas who participate in the ritual. The Nyabinghi is held during Rastafari holy days. One of the holiest days is April 21, which celebrates Ethiopian king Haile Selassie’s visit to Jamaica in 1968. (More on Selassie later!) Congregation is another behavior of Wallace’s which can be associated with Rastafari. The Nyabinghi, which are large gatherings, bring many people together so they can “reason.” The Rastas also have small reasoning sessions which can consist of only two people. The reasoning sessions fit in with Wallace’s behavior of Congregation, because the Rastas are discussing the religion.

Physiological Exercise is yet another of Wallace’s behaviors which fits in with the Rastafarian Religion. Wallace believes this behavior is done to alter the mind state. The use of ganja fits in with Physiological Exercise. Marijuana does not bring the person closer to “god” because Rastas believe each person has a constant connection with “god.” This connection with “god” is what the Rastafari concept of I-and-I is all about. The Ganja does bring the person’s mind into a different state in which he or she can better understand the way Babylon works. There are individuals who are assigned the duty of supplying the ganja for reasoning. (Something tells me all this ganja talk is going to make a profitable day for the pot dealers who sell to the readers of this blog!)

The bible is a major influence on the Rastafarian Religion. Reciting the Code is arguably the behavior of Wallace’s which best fits in with Rastafari. Rastas have a great understanding of the bible and study the text often.  The bible is the main book of the Christian tradition but most of the followers of Christ rely on the exhorter to interpret the bible for them. The Rastafari Reasoning sessions are based on the individual’s own interpretation of the bible and most Rastas can usually agree on what is written. Rastafarians will point out versus in the bible in order to justify the use of ganja. They are constantly talking to “god” and always aware of his presence, which fits in with Wallace’s behavior of “Prayer.” Wallace states that all religions involve prayer which usually consists of thanking the supernatural or asking for something.

Symbolism is another behavior which applies to the Rastafarian Religion. According to Erskine, Leonard Howell “was selling pictures of Haile Selassie as passports Ethiopia.” (The significance will be made clear further in the entry.) Howell was one of the founding members of Rastafari. Repatriation was one of Marcus Garvey’s biggest contributions to the movement. The original Rastas were Garveyites. Marcus Garvey wanted all Africans to return to the motherland, in order to undo the injustices of slavery. The term repatriation has changed over the years. Now Rastas say they will repatriate after they find justice for the oppression they suffered caused by Babylon; there is no longer a desire to move back to Africa. Repatriation also refers to a symbolic return to being Ethiopians and out from under the oppressive rule of Babylon.

The Curchical chants of the Nyabinghi is a CD recording of a grounding ceremony which was held on the occasion of United States President Ronald Reagan’s visit to Jamaica in 1982. The Rastas wanted to protest Reagan’s visit and held a Nyabinghi to do so. Reagan was regarded as the face of Babylon, because he led the most powerful and oppressive country in the world. The Nyabinghi was held for seven days in the mountains away from where Reagan was staying. The Rastas do not feel the need to hold a protest at the site of the event they are objecting. Rastafarians believe the vibrations and spirituality of the music will travel and have an effect on the undesired event. (What’s not to love. I am considering leaving atheism and becoming a Rasta!)

The Rastafari religion does not fit into every one of Anthony Wallace’s thirteen behaviors, but it does meet a majority of the criteria. The Rastafarian movement also fits in with Wallace’s definition for cult institutions. Rastafarians are hesitant to use the term religion because of its association with Babylon. Regardless of the contradiction in meaning, Rastas have created a religion which does not aim to oppress its people, but Rastafarians generally will call the movement a religion when they are in a situation were it is favorable to do so. A few years ago, there was an article in the Boston Herald about a Rastafarian who was caught with a large amount of marijuana, and he was charged with distribution as well as possession. The judge removed the distribution charge because the Rastafarian argued that the large amount of marijuana was for his personal religious use.

An anthropological view of the Rastafari culture clearly places it within the framework of Wallace’s criteria for a religion. These facts about the religion fascinated me, and I was almost hooked. Until I learned the one fact which turned me off! (There’s always at least one!)

Nyabinghi is a word with origins in Ethiopia. The one unifying aspect for all Rastafarians is the belief that Haile Selassie is “god.” Selassie was crowned Emperor of Ethiopia in 1930. Rastas identify with Ethiopia because it is the word which is used historically for identifying the continent of Africa. Rastas do not use the word Africa when talking about the continent because it is a word created by the slave traders.

In the 1920’s, Marcus Garvey was misquoted as saying, “a Messiah would come to earth in the person of an African King.” Most of the Rastas were followers of Garvey, who was the leader of the Repatriation movement. Selassie’s Coronation in 1930 led the Rastas to believe he was “god,” and the leader of a secret society called Nyabinghi. Today, more moderate Rastas believe Selassie is simply the king placed on earth, chosen by “god.” The founders believed Selassie would lead the Africans to Zion, which is a perfect world. When Selassie died in 1975, Rastas believed it was a ruse, because “‘god’ cannot die.” Supposedly Selassie is living in a monastery and preparing to return and remove evil from the world. (I can’t wait!)

It is easy to understand the affect of Selassie on the Rastas by reading one of his quotes; “Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph.”

Selassie had many names and the term Rastafari originates from one of his titles. Ras, in the Ethiopian language, is a royal title and Tafari is one of Selassie’s family names. The Nyabinghi includes Music, which is another behavior identified by Wallace. Rastas have their own music which eventually inspired Reggae. The Rastafarian music has its origins in Africa and the main instruments are drums. Reggae was very instrumental in spreading the ideology of the Rastafari. Bob Marley was a famous artist who used the guidance of Rastafarian elders to spread the movement’s message, but Reggae is not the music played during the Nyabinghi. The Rasta Music has a very African feel to it and has a sense of dread, because the Rastas feel they have nothing to be happy about as long as Babylon continues to be oppressive.

Could Selassie be “god?” NO! He became aware of the Rastas’ belief in the 1950’s and denied the rumors. “Was that good enough for the Rastas?” No! They said, “Selassie was being humble.” At first, Selassie was a great leader who helped many Ethiopians, but eventually he became a dictator. (I hate when “god” does that!) Asked about some of the atrocities committed by Selassie, Rastas reply, “No one can question ‘god’s’ actions.” (Yikes!)

If not for the belief in Selassie, I would have become a Rasta!

@PeteTeix617

Against The Unexamined

The goal of my blog is to write entries which challenge people to think. (I know thinking is difficult for some, but give it a try, your brain will only hurt for a short period of time!) I have my beliefs and others can have theirs. We don’t have to agree! I am always open to new information.

Important facts: (You might want to print these facts out! In fact, I will add them to my about page!)

  1. I don’t hate “god” and I don’t hate Christianity, or any other religion. (I simply don’t believe!)
  2. My blog is not an atheist blog. (I am an atheist, therefore many of my opinions are based on that belief!)
  3. I don’t want anyone to change his or her beliefs. (I have no desire to convert anyone.)

All opinions are welcome! (I will approve every comment. Even if someone writes something negative about me, I will allow the comment to be viewed by everyone. I don’t believe in censorship. **Just understand that I am never afraid to respond!**)

Comments are important. Everyone’s voice is relevant. A comment may spark a great discussion. The best comments are usually from the people who disagree! **If you are shy, create a fake e-mail address and a fake name!**

***What is the point of this entry?***

On July 6th, 2011, at 12:07pm I received a text; a suggested reading. The book is called Mere Christianity, and was written by C. S. Lewis. (He also wrote the Chronicles of Narnia!)

I immediately googled the title. As soon as I learned the book was written in the1940’s, I made a quick assumption. There was no way C. S. Lewis would be able to change my beliefs. Not only would his book not make me a believer, it wouldn’t even get me to question my atheism. This was my assumption for one simple reason; I was educated in the 90’s and 2000’s. Any new book about religion, was probably written by someone who had knowledge of Lewis’ Mere Christianity. Also, I understand that we live in a different world. Much of the information about religion and its origin has been gathered after Lewis’ book. If the book had the ability to convert atheists to Christianity, there would be no atheists.

 

   I had my doubts, but I was open to the challenge. If there is a book out there which can change my views on religion, I want to read it! The key is, not to be afraid of learning. (Might this be my last post as an atheist?)

 

     Who was Lewis, and why did he write the book?

 

     From the book, “Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably the most influential Christian writer of his day. The contents of the book were first revealed by Lewis during a radio broadcasting. He made some additions and released a printed version. Lewis was a follower of the Church of England and a self-proclaimed, former atheist who converted back to Christianity. (Have I followed in his footsteps?)

 

     I called Barnes and Noble to ask if the book was in stock. It was! I couldn’t wait to buy Lewis’ text so I hopped in the car and drove to Braintree. I purchased the book and returned to Boston. Later on, I began to read. (It was exhilarating. Interesting book, but would Lewis change my life?)

 

     Sorry to report the truth. I WAS DISSAPOINTED IN LEWIS! (Not challenging at all.)

 

     I didn’t even make it through the preface. An immediate red flag was raised. In the preface, on speaking about the division between the different Christian denominations, Lewis states, “Our divisions should never be discussed except in the presence of those who have already come to believe that there is one God and that Jesus Christ is His only son.” (pg. viii)

 

     What I take his statement to mean is: we can’t even agree on how to worship God, so how can we expect a non-believer to accept the fact that we believe he is indeed real. I guess the goal is to convince people that God exists, beat it into their heads until it is fully ingrained into their consciousness, then and only then can you reveal the fact about the inability of the different denominations to agree.

 

     Seems a bit ridiculous that part of the strategy of converting people is to hide important information about the religion. (Sounds like Lewis was more about scamming than converting.)

 

     The second red flag:

 

     The major problem with this book, is the major problem with Christianity in general…FOUNDATION!

 

    If a religion is built on a weak foundation, it will not stand up. On pg. X of the preface, Lewis states, “If any topic could be relied upon to wreck a book about ‘mere’ Christianity—if any topic makes utterly unprofitable reading for those who do not yet believe that the Virgin’s son is god--surely this is it.”

 

     I take this to mean, Christians believe that Jesus is not only born of a virgin, but he is the son of “god,” and we have to keep this fact away from the non-believer, until he is a believer. (Get him believing in “god” and, when he is hooked or brainwashed, then we can tell him about the virgin birth.) To me Lewis is saying, the foundation of the religion is so preposterous that no one would ever join if the truth is revealed, in the beginning. Hiding the very foundation of a religion from someone who you are trying to convert is not convincing to me; the first thing you should mention is the foundation.

 

     The foundation of the book is also very fragile to me. Every argument in the text is based on the fact that there is a law of nature and, “First human beings, all over the earth, have this curious idea that they ought to behave in a certain way, and cannot really get rid of it. Secondly, that they do not in fact behave in that way. They know the Law of Nature; they break it.” (pg. 8)

 

     For me to agree with anything Lewis has to say, I would have to agree that the foundation of the book is true. I completely disagree with him. There is no Law of Nature, and people do not have a curious idea that they ought to act in a certain way. I do agree, people may come to understand this Law of Nature that he speaks about, but it is not a part of human nature; it's something that they have to be taught. The Law of Nature which Lewis mentions is ingrained in people, not natural. I have taken many classes on human behavior and it is undisputable that human nature is to be completely selfish, and to act without caring about other people. Children have to be taught that throwing tantrums, when they don’t get their way, is wrong. It takes years to remove their natural behavior. If anything, the Law of Nature is for humans to be selfish.

 

     I believe the same thing can be said for the animal kingdom as well; it’s survival of the fittest. There are lionesses who protect their young and lions who protect their pride, but they do not care for any other animals. In fact, if a lion is too old and a new lion fights him off and steals his pride, the new lion will immediately kill the young or scare them off. He will want nothing to do with the babies of another male lion. With humans, it’s completely the same. We only care about those who are part of our group, unless we are taught otherwise. There are indigenous people in Papua New Guinea who eat their enemies. (If you get the chance to watch the documentary Eating With Cannibals, do so!)

 

     The fact that the foundation of the book is false, leaves me to believe, everything based on the foundation can be easily disproved. The book was an enjoyable read for entertainment purposes and general knowledge, but as an argument for the existence of “god,” it fell short. Not only was his argument weak, I don’t believe Lewis even has a true understanding of what is means to be an atheist.

 

     My beliefs are founded on solid, and accurate information. People don’t understand that one of the most difficult challenges for a human, is to change hi or her beliefs. They think I just woke up one day and said, “Fuck it, there is no ‘god’!”

 

     Belief in “god” is based on fear. Everyone must be god-fearing. Why should I have to fear “god?” Shouldn't the relationship between man and the lord be about love. That's another part of religion that helps me to compare “god”  to Santa Claus. Kids are scared into believing in Santa to keep them from misbehaving They are often told, “If you are naughty, Santa won't bring you a gift.” The fear of not getting a gift is what makes them behave. Once the children grow up, they let go of the belief in Santa, but they keep the lesson of behaving. Same thing with “god.” It's good for children to believe during their youth because they learn the lesson of how to be good citizens, but once they are adults, and they understand how ridiculous religion is, they should let go of the belief. Santa is easy to let go of because adults admit that he is fake. It's different with “god.” Adults continue to believe, and scare people into keeping their faith.

 

     I was able to seek out and challenge conventional thought and I found that there is no “god.” Did you notice that religions always beat up the devil, but they are careful never to kill him, because if they do there will be no fear!

 

     I love reading and I love learning. Thanks for the suggestion! Lewis’ book was extremely helpful in helping me solidify the fact that my beliefs are based on a concrete foundation. Anyone who has knowledge of another book worth reading, please notify me! Who knows, maybe I can be converted! (Just kidding!)

 

     Challenging conventional thought is fascinating to me. I can’t understand why anyone who has a strong faith in “god,” would have a fear of testing their faith. Even Lewis admits in his book that he continues to doubt his faith. Why do people lack a thirst for knowledge? If “god” exists, nothing you read will change that fact. I have no problem challenging atheism because there is no doubt in my mind, there is no “god.”

 

     Texts don’t kill people. People with (religious) texts kill people!!!

@PeteTeix617

Why I Like Hitler

“Of course he likes Hitler, he’s an evil atheist Satan-worshiper!” No, you Dumbazian, atheists are not immoral devil-followers. We know the devil doesn’t exist…did you not read my post ‘From Catholicism to Christianity?’ (Dumbazians are people from Dumbazia, the land of the dumbasses!) Suggesting I like Hitler because I am an atheist is asinine; especially when it is a fact that Christians are more inclined to support Hitler’s views. ***I strongly recommend reading the aforementioned post, for those who are new to my blog.***

Followers of Christ are quick to deny the fact that Hitler was not an atheist; he was a Christian who believed in “god.” When he gained power, Adolf made a clear distinction between his National Socialism, and Christianity. The purpose was to ensure that his power remained absolute and unchallenged; the separation had nothing to do with his religious ideology. Hitler didn’t want his followers to be influenced by the Pope; relinquishing power was not an option for the Fuhrer.

“What a preposterous notion, suggesting that Hitler was a Christian; the guy committed genocide for Christ’s sake!” Really? Let’s review the facts and see if there is any connection. Genocide? Hmmm, where have I read about genocide before? Oh that’s right, in the bible. God repeatedly committed acts of genocide. Don’t believe me? Ask the citizens of Sodom and Gomorrah. And how can I forget the flood–Noah and his family were the only people on earth who were good enough for “god?” The story of the flood was genocide on steroids! It seems like the bible is the place to go to learn how to commit a proper genocide. (This may come as a surprise, the Hutu in Rwanda were Christians! Who were the Hutu? They were the people who committed genocide against the Tutsi.)

Christians believe Jews are going to Hell, maybe Hitler was carrying out “god’s” work.   I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the mindset of the Christians during WWII. They probably believed the genocide was “god’s” way of punishing Jewish people for denying Christ. Just listen to the way Christians talk about Muslims today; I doubt they had any compassion for the people they hold responsible for killing their beloved mythical Jesus.

How can I forget the Spaniards. Those Mayans and their ungodly religion…WIPE THEM OUT!!! I cringed when I read stories about Spanish soldiers who ensured the sharpness of their swords by chopping up Mayan children. Maybe someone should have explained to the great Mayan civilization that the only road to salvation is through “Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” Let me not even discuss the genocidal acts committed against the Native Americans by the United States of America. John O’Sullivan was the Catholic who coined the phrase “Manifest Destiny!” Too bad the Native Americans never received the memo from Jesus!

The ancient Greeks were no strangers to genocide, either. At least the Christians killed in the name of “god.” The Greeks waged a ten year siege against the city of Troy. Why? Because Helen, the wife of Menelaus, decided that she was in love with Paris, son of King Priam of Troy. Shamed Menelaus, cried to his big brother and the King of Kings, Agamemnon, who led the Greeks against the Trojans. That’s right, genocide happened over a woman. “But that’s a myth!” And you mean to tell me the stories in the bible are not!

These famed heroes are never labeled as evil, but Hitler is history’s devil. History must be void of emotion; seeking the truth and reporting the information to the world is the only goal. Sometimes, I find my self rooting for the Germans when watching the documentaries, because I am able to follow the story and treat the events of WWII as I would any other in history. How ridiculous would a person sound if he or she waged a smear campaign against the Huns or the Visigoths?

It is time for the Jewish people to forgive Hitler. Isn’t that what the Torah teaches? I mean, the man is going to spend an eternity in Hell…seems like the punishment fit the crime! Right? When I was a Catholic, I found it in my heart to forgive Hitler for his sins because I was taught, that was the right thing to do!

“Do you really like Hitler?” Yes! Not how you would expect though. I wouldn’t pass him a note in study hall asking, “Do you like me? Circle yes or no!” I’m not enamored with the guy! (I would have banged the anti-Semite out of Eva Braun though!) When I say I like Hitler, I mean from the point of view of a historian. How can I, or any historian, not like Hitler? Just mention his name and people stop what they are doing and pay attention. When it was first launched, The History Channel featured Hitler week. The ratings were so astronomically high that the people in charge decided to incorporate Hitler documentaries almost daily.

Do you think it’s a coincidence that Hitler’s name is on the title of almost every WWII documentary? Most of the interesting channels follow suit. NatGeo, the Discovery Channel, History International, The Military Channel, etc. World War II was fascinating. The fact that we have footage and a detailed paper trail allows historians to uncover more information than ever before. I’m no neo-Nazi, but I don’t think there is a more interesting period in history. They should just come out with the Hitler network; it’s annoying having to search through several channels in order to find the new documentaries, which are truly enjoyable.

I also enjoy reading about the History of Germany and how the Nazis gained power. I am tempted to give a historical background, but that would be uninteresting and boring for the for “the cool kids.” (You know I care so much about what the cool kids think! Ejukayshun iz sew unkool!!! Agreed!) The interesting evolution of German unification starts with the Prussians and ends with Hitler. (German history is historian porno!) I have countless books on the subject, in my personal library, and I enjoyed several courses about Germany and Hitler. (Walking into Barnes and Noble and handing the clerk a book with a large swastika on the cover is not for the faint-of-heart!) I will continue to learn as much as I can about Hitler’s Germany because the subject intrigues me; Adolf’s story is unparalleled. The man witnessed Germany’s destruction during World War I, and he was able to lead the country back to prominence. Who doesn’t like an underdog story? Studying the primary documents and reading the actual back channel communications leading up to the war was phenomenal. Other than the Vatican Secret Archives, Nazi documents would be my favorite to peruse.

All of the “necessary” channels feature Hitler documentaries because he sells; he sells better than sex. In fact, if a Hitler porno was created, it would be the highest grossing adult film in history. They should call it ‘Hitler’s Nuts’ (The key to a great porno title is the pun. Does it mean Hitler is nuts, as in crazy, or does it literally mean Hitler’s nuts, describing the semen he loves to spread all over Nazi whores!)

Most people get caught up in the war, but Hitler had many other interests than German expansion. He created the autobahn, the world’s greatest roadway, which has sections with no speed-limits. (I will drive a car on the autobahn and reach at least one hundred and fifty miles per hour; my American record is one hundred and twenty-three!) Hitler hired an automotive genius by the name of Ferdinand Porsche to create an affordable car; it was Adolf’s vision to develop a car which all Germans could own. Porsche’s designs became the Volkswagen, which is German for “The People’s Car.” I don’t have to tell you what Mr. Porsche decided to do with his life after he fell out of the graces of the Fuhrer. (I just thought about it; some people need to be spoon fed. Porsche is the founder of the car company!)

Hitler was a champion orator and the greatest motivator. I would love for him to come back and coach the Denver Broncos. The team would never lose a game. Of course, hiring Hitler as the team’s coach would be a public relations nightmare for owner Pat Bowlen and his executive vice-president, THE GREAT JOHN ELWAY! Long Live John Elway!

Germans should embrace Hitler for all of the advancements that he created in the country. He was a great leader. Adolf was also cunning. During the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, he removed all of the Nazi anti-Semitic propaganda, and fooled the world into believing that Germany was a diverse and tolerant country. (Many of Hitler’s contemporary leaders were well aware of the truth, but everyone remained silent.) Do you realize, the allied forces met at the Treaty of Versailles following World War I and placed heavy restrictions on Germany. It was illegal for Hitler to create a massive army, and he was still able to take on the world; the guy was a genius! [I am not going to sit here and list all of the many accomplishments of Adolf Hitler, you can research the information for yourselves.]

Let me deal with the big elephant in the room concerning Hitler; THE HOLOCAUST. How can I talk about the Fuhrer as a German Hero without being outraged by the appalling acts he committed? The way I see it, if people can view George Washington as an American Hero, I can view Hitler as a German hero. They can leave out the “minor” detail–Slavery, and I’ll leave out the “minor” detail–the Holocaust. The word hero is thrown around freely, but I wonder what the answer would be if I asked a Native American which of the American Presidents is the biggest hero!

I often hear people attempting to decide which event was worse, American Slavery or the Holocaust. That would be like arriving at the scene of a horrific accident, in which two brothers were killed, and asking the mother which death causes her more pain!

Slavery in the United States and the Holocaust are equally shameful. But we must not forget that each event is based on a precedent, set in the bible. I already discussed biblical genocide, but as far as slavery is concerned, “god” gave rules on how to treat slaves. In the book of Leviticus, speaking about the redemption of property, “the lord” said:

“Slaves, male and female, you may indeed possess, provided you buy them from among the neighboring nations. You may also buy them from among the aliens who reside with you and from their children who are born and reared in your land. Such slaves you may own as chattels, and leave to your sons as their hereditary property, making them perpetual slaves.” – Leviticus 25:44-46. (Read your Bible!)

I guess Washington and Hitler were simply trying to follow “god’s” example. Maybe that’s why the saying is, “What Would Jesus Do?,” because we don’t want people doing what god did; that guy was a jealous angry asshole. “God is good! All the time!” Yeah right!!!

“Why I Like Hitler?” Not outlandish after all!!!

@PeteTeix617

Osama: Terrorist or Hero

***For the purpose of this post, I will not factor in any of the conspiracy theories about Bush’s involvement in the World Trade Center bombings. I watched the videos and read the stories. They are interesting and could possibly be true, but I don’t have access to the necessary documents which would allow me to discuss any conspiracy theories. I am writing under the assumption that Osama Bin Laden was the architect behind the attacks on America.***

If, for even one second, you think I am a supporter of Osama Bin Laden, you’re out of your freaking mind. I also don’t think he is a hero if that’s what you expected me to argue. Well, he’s not a hero to the western world at least. I think anyone who can target innocent people, regardless of purpose, is a maniac and a complete jackass. (I don’t mean to offend the funny jackasses on MTV!)

But…

Before we brand Osama “the most horrible human being to ever walk on the planet,” let’s try to break down and understand the events which led to 9/11. Bin Laden was not a crazy blood thirsty killer; he was fighting a religious war. (Religious war is an oxymoron, but not a cool one like jumbo shrimp. People actually die over whose mythical deity is better. I guess it makes sense!) I will give some of the historical factors which I believe led to 9/11, but it is the responsibility of anyone who wants to know the entire story to spend the time and research the information; this is not a history lesson.

Propaganda is extremely important when foreign policy is concerned. We must be careful not to accept anything which is force-fed to us; people who don’t think, deserve to be manipulated. Any person or country who opposes US interest is usually given a bad name. (A perfect example of this is Hugo Chavez. I honestly haven’t studied his life enough to comment, but I do know he can’t be as bad as the press makes him out to be. Venezuela has a lot of oil and the US wants to control it. The fact that Chavez doesn’t bend to the will of the White House is commendable. FYI: according to CNN the price of gas in Venezuela is 0.12 cents per gallon! Think of that the next time your gassing up! Chavez believes it’s the people’s oil! Like I said, I don’t know too much about the guy, but he seems ok.) It’s interesting that the Government which runs Saudi Arabia is similar to the Taliban in Afghanistan. The difference is our government’s desire to remove the Taliban from power in order to install a puppet regime, and the US needs to befriend the Saudis in order to ensure we have oil. [The media labels the Taliban members as bad, but the Saudi royal family members are good.] Don’t buy into the rhetoric about entering the war for some patriotic duty. We were acting in the interest of the US economy. Too bad our leader was an imbecile and the war ended up destroying our financial system. (Yes, I know the housing crisis was crippling, but analysts are projecting the war in Iraq to cost 3 Trillion Dollars! Some even expect the war in Afghanistan to cost double. Our two un-winnable wars made it impossible for the government to deal with the housing crash. Bush is the ultimate gambler, “I have a hunch Saddam has some WMDs. What the hell it’s only 3 Trillion, let’s role the dice! C’mon seven, daddy needs a new source of oil!”)

The interest in the Middle East began with the British, who desired a faster route to India and the Spice Islands. At the risk of getting into too much detail, I’ll just summarize. The Middle East was part of the Ottoman Empire. There were no countries, just a group of Ottoman provinces. Britain placed selected Arabs in positions of power, and the new kings were grateful; they remained under British influence. The British promised the Arabs they could have their own independent nations as reward for helping to remove the Ottomans. (When were the Ottomans driven out? Maybe a few hundred years ago? No! 1918; WWI.)

Eventually, the US replaced Britain as the world’s premier superpower. America has been involved in Middle Eastern affairs ever since. In the 80’s, during the Cold War, Russia was attempting to spread communism and grow its empire, and the United States was forced to prevent Russian expansion. Afghanistan, strategically located, became the perfect location for Russia to gain influence over the Middle East. Why is this important? Because Osama Bin Laden was a member of the Afghan resistance. He and his supporters were trained by the US. (That’s right people, those Al Queda videos of men preparing to fight against the infidels came from American military assistance. It’s hard to imagine a bunch of guys training on what looks like a school yard jungle gym can strike fear in Americans, but those videos were on the news almost weekly.)

The freedom fighters, as they were called, also received weapons and other military equipment. (From President Ronald Reagan’s freedom fighters, to President George W. Bush’s terrorists! You gotta love it!) The Russians were eventually defeated and Bin Laden elevated to hero status in the Muslim world. He had no interest in Afghanistan, but Osama believed in jihad. (There are two jihads in Islam. The greater jihad is an inner struggle towards self improvement. The lesser jihad is the struggle against enemies of Islam.) Bin Laden felt he was doing his duty when he helped to remove the Russians from the nation of his Arab brothers. The US supported him, but when he decided to fight against the “new enemy of Islam,” he was labeled a terrorist.

Knowing how fanatical Bin Laden preached, does anyone think it was wise for former President George W. Bush, prior to the invasion of Iraq, to call the mission a “modern day crusade?” I know the guy was an ignoramus, but come on! How does someone like that get elected to lead the free world. (The US political structure has to be improved. This won’t ever happen again! I’LL MOVE TO CANADA IF PALIN IS OUR NEXT PRESIDENT!!!)

I hate to point this out, but there is no difference between Osama Bin Laden, who fought a religious war against the United States and Pope Urban II, who ordered the first Crusade in 1095 bce. (Who am I kidding, I love to point that out!!!) How many innocent people must have died during the four years of fighting in Jerusalem! Each leader knew there would be collateral damage, but winning for “god” was more important. Why is Pope Urban II remembered as the hero of the First Crusade but Osama Bin Laden is labeled a terrorist; they committed the same atrocities. Two religious terrorists in my view! (The sad thing is, Pope Urban II was a saint compared to some of the other Pontiffs!)

(For the ignorant, both Osama and Urban fought for “god.“ Allah is god and god is allah. Same faith, the only difference in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam is the changes brought on by the prophet each chooses to follow. Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad are all prophets from the same lineage!)

From the American perspective, Osama is a terrorist. He ordered the killing of innocent citizens, and he felt the operation should have been carried out by any means. Bin Laden didn’t care about the collateral damage, which makes him evil, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that he achieved his main objective of affecting the US economy. (I think it’s amazing that the term used for killing civilians is “collateral damage.” How is that acceptable?) I don’t agree with the methods used by Al Queda, but I do admire the courage to take on the most powerful nation in the world.

I felt a sense of pride when twitter announced that Bin Laden was dead. (We live in a different world. Tweets are the best news source around. I remember, during the CNN coverage, hearing Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was the first person to tweet about Osama’s death; CRAZY! How in the world did he know?) I can remember the fear I felt on September 11, 2001. I continued to look at the skyscrapers in Boston, fearing they would be the next targets. (How dumb does the government think we are that they used the bullshit color fear system. “Today, the fear level is orange.” Does anyone question that Bush created the system on his own?) I always found comfort when I heard the news reports of Bin Laden’s failing health and horrible living conditions. Having to move around from cave to cave with no luxuries seemed fitting; if we couldn’t find him, at least he was struggling.

Osama was horrible, but I can at least understand why he did what he did. I am not a proponent of any violence, because I believe what separates humans from the other animals is our ability to reason. Diplomacy should always be the only option. (Anyone who believes Osama Bin Laden was a crazy psychopath, lacks education.) The Al Queda boss did what most leaders choose to do; he decided not to consider the innocent lives of the civilians when drawing up his master plan. Did Bush consider the innocent lives of the Iraqis who were killed during operation ‘Shock and Awe?’ How was that not an act of terrorism? (As a history major, I was offended by W’s recklessness. Iraq is located in the cradle of civilization and this guy decided to drop bombs on some of the world’s most historical sites.)

I know what people are going to say, “We can’t sit back and do nothing. Someone has to pay for 9/11!” I agree, but the way Bush went about exacting revenge can only be described as “Bushian!” Our military had the capability to capture Bin Laden, years ago; targeting Saddam Hussein was the dumbest strategy ever. In a way, Bush helped Bin Laden; Al Queda became the most treasured organization for radical Muslims. Bush was the prefect recruiting tool for the radicals. His decisions couldn’t have been any more perfect from a marketing standpoint. I was happy for America when special forces killed Bin Laden because, regardless of religious or political views, the world is a better place without Osama; I just can’t bring myself to high-five over someone being shot. (But I understand the celebrating that occurred around the country. Any American, who lived through 9/11, had to feel jubilant.)

The troops finally accomplished the Mission—only 8 years after Bush stood on that aircraft carrier with the huge “MISSION ACCOMPLISHED” banner and proclaimed victory. (Anyone who voted for W should be forced to donate $100 to cancer research!) My sense of pride was quickly replaced by a sense of inadequacy once the details, of Bin Laden’s life on the run, were revealed. Are you kidding me? The guy was living in a mansion! It was a slap in the face. I can’t walk onto a plane with a beverage because of this man, and he’s living the good life in a mansion? UNBELIEVABLE! The very freedoms that Bush launched the war to “protect” were ripped from every American citizen. “Thanks Bush, these TSA freedom-cavity searches actually make me feel safer!”

Religion is such a horrible entity. Cancer, AIDS, the Plague; nothing has killed more people than faith! We have to consider the Islamic point of view. (I understand Muslims need to make monumental strides in the treatment of women, but bombing Middle Eastern cities will not help improve women’s rights.) Bush wanted to bring American freedom to the people of Iraq, but how is a Muslim supposed to accept some of our cultural principles. We have thongs which are marketed to 10 year-old girls. We have horrible teenage pregnancy rates, divorce happens in half of marriages, and STDs are spreading faster than a stripper’s legs. Are those the standards we want to share with the world. It’s easy to judge the cultural values of other nations, but let’s not forget to turn the microscope on our own society; we’re not the finest example.

Bin Laden is no hero of mine, but I can understand why he is revered amongst Muslims. Regardless of what anyone thinks, Osama Bin Laden is a terrorist, so are Pope Urban II and W. The former president should honestly be forced to answer for lying to the American people, launching a war in order to kill Saddam, risking the lives of American troops,  and ordering the murder of thousands of innocent Iraqi citizens. (No one can argue that Bush didn’t invade Iraq in an effort to out shine his father. Never mind, people can argue anything! I mean, someone had to argue that he was the right man for the job during the election! How would you like to have that assignment? “Ok, all you have to do is convince the world that W is intelligent.” I QUIT! I wish wars were fought like in the past. The president should have to be on the front lines leading the troops.)

Bin Laden killed innocent Americans to fight his war, and Bush killed innocent Iraqis to fight his. What is the difference? I can’t justify the deaths! There are millions of people who die every year due to unnecessary gang violence, and we always hear the same quote, “Why are these kids killing each other for no reason?” When are people going to stop killing each other for religious reasons?

*****If you are a deranged, Super-Patriotic American, with a limited education, and you are incapable of comprehending my views…PLEASE DO ME A FAVOR; When you shoot me, aim for the head so I can die instantly. There is no need to make me suffer–What Would Jesus Do!*****

@PeteTeix617

From Catholicism To Atheism

I sat down in front of my computer and wrote pages of information about my conversion from Christianity to Atheism. I wrote paragraphs upon paragraphs, and every one fell short of the objective. Each paragraph failed to convey my true feelings. After awhile, I realized the problem. I can’t explain the process of being enlightened; it’s simply impossible. Either a person reaches the level of awakening that I have achieved, or not. Who am I to convert the ignorant?

I spent over fifteen years removing the beliefs of Catholicism from my mind. How can I express the process of becoming awakened to a person who is asleep? IMPOSSIBLE! If anyone has a desire to hear the story of my conversion, ask me and we can converse in person. Even then, I feel a believer cannot completely understand what it means to be an atheist.

An atheist is defined as a person who doesn’t believe in  “god,” but it is far more than that. A true atheist must understand why “god” cannot exist; there is no belief. We simply know! The same way Galileo knew the earth revolved around the sun, an atheist knows “god” exists only in myth. Thankfully, I do not live in a time when the church has any true power.

I often read stories about atheists who convert back to some sort of belief system, but that is an impossibility. The ones who make these false claims never reached the true understanding of atheism. Unfortunately for those who are non-believers, atheism cannot be explained. The information is readily available, it is up to each individual to discover the truth!

If you honestly believe in your faith and you have a desire to save me, please allow me to go to Hell. I don’t mind! I can be an atheist without you agreeing with me, why can’t you be a believer without me agreeing with you?

I live in a world of believers, and my knowledge is challenged on a daily basis. Some people may find my posts to be offensive, but I am offended when people are afraid to challenge their faith. I know that I call believers idiots, but what am I supposed to make of someone who doesn’t even understand his or her own faith. (If you’ve never read the bible from cover to cover, please shut the fuck up about your faith. How can someone believe in a religion and not read the most important text?)

A clear example of this is the so-called Catholic who believes in abortion. I must have missed the part of Catholicism which allowed for followers to question the Pope. The basis of the religion is the fact that the Conclave members are guided by “god” when choosing a new Pontiff; and the lord speaks through the new leader. I don’t care what your beliefs are concerning abortion but if you are Catholic, Pope Benny tells you what to believe; there is no free will. (If you ever tell me that you are a Catholic but you are pro-choice, YOU ARE A FUCKING IDIOT!!!)

Please do me a favor. Study your faith, then we can have an intelligent conversation about belief!

It’s hilarious when one of the hungry-hungry hippo-crites discovers I’m an atheist and attempts to chastise me.

“How can you not believe in ‘god’?” Simple! He doesn’t exist!

Now can you answer one of my questions?

“Sir, how can you challenge my morals when you practice pre-marital sex and have children out of wedlock?”

“And I guess you’re right ma’am, I’m evil, but how can you walk up the isle and eat the body of Christ, hung-over with semen and vodka fresh on your breath?”

“Only god can judge you.” No! I’ll have something to say about how you live!

Judge me and I’ll judge you back!!!

@PeteTeix617