Monday, October 25, 2010

Born Again on FaceBook?

A very nice Christian Woman posted "a funny" on Facebook today.  She wrote:

Regarding the Mosque being build near Ground Zero. I say let them build it. But then, across the street we should put a topless bar called "You Mecca Me Hot" and next to that a gay bar called "The Turban Cowboy" and next to that a Pork Rib restaurant called "Iraq-O-Ribs" and next to that a check cashing place called "Iran out of Money" then we'll see who's tolerant. Copy and paste if you agree.

I then "liked" the funny, and posted my own comment:

Welcome to New York, where tolerance is expected.   And for the record, I do not think the head of this mosque is going to have any problem with any of that.   But a church? They will FREAK OUT. Just say "God damn these fools that surround us," and some Christians will have a melt down, because "the Lord's" name is being used in vain.... as if God had a name, or cared what we called it.

A quick Freak Out then ensued:

Gosh Patrick - I guess I'd have to say I fall into that Christian category who freaks out hearing God's name in vain! I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to remove your comment.

At which point I provided a little Christian instruction:

How funny. You can sling contempt for other folk's God, but not your own? You can mock their ethos and institutions, but not your own? The Bible talks about that, doesn't it? See Matthew 7:3-5. And it also talks about what you should do to live a Christian life (See Matthew 7:12 or Luke 6:31). Just saying....

No names here, because none of this is personal.

But if we are to be Christians, then let us act like Christians.

In Matthew 7:3-5 we find:

Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.

And in Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31, we find the Golden Rule:

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

That is all....


Sean said...


This exact argument reminded me of a great article by the neuroscientist Sam Harris.

Harris rightly points out that you either you have good reasons for believing something or you do not. The people with whom you are debating believe that the creator of the Universe has a name and wrote a book. In that book he said DO NOT MISUSE MY NAME. This is either true or it is not. I do not think that intolerance will get us anywhere closer to recognizing that believing such things is irrational.

Here is the article:

The Dog House said...

I started to write a post on the subject and then realized I was just begging to be flamed by the religious masses, so I'll just say...

Amen, Patrick, amen.


Sean said...

I meant to say "I do not think that tolerance will get us anywhere closer to recognizing that believing such things is irrational."

My point, (and Harris's) is that tolerance sounds nice and is certainly better than violent or discriminatory intolerance, but at some point we need to be ok with pointing out that the emperor has no clothes.

PBurns said...

A quote from the post Sean cited:

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

When we find reliable ways to make human beings more loving, less fearful, and genuinely enraptured by the fact of our appearance in the cosmos, we will have no need for divisive religious myths. Only then will the practice of raising our children to believe that they are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, or Hindu be broadly recognized as the ludicrous obscenity that it is. And only then will we stand a chance of healing the deepest and most dangerous fractures in our world.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

I myself am not willing to call anyone's religion a ludicrous obscenity.

All I ask is that they do unto others as they would have others do unto them. Either we mock ALL the religions or we mock none.

Christianity does not get a free pass, while Islam gets a free whack.


HTTrainer said...

I think the last person to use God's name was Ethan Allen, when he attacked Fort Ticonderoga.
All modern man and woman does is use the phrase God, God this and God that (now I am starting to sound like Peter Cooke from "Bedazzled".
If I were God and nobody used my proper name, I'd be really pissed.
At least Sam'l Clemens learned how to pronounce his name properly.

Seahorse said...

The man who married us was called a Brahmachari. He was a genuine cool guy, though he dressed like a priest (which I forgave). He said things like, "Oh my god!" all the time. When I asked him his view about "using God's name in vain", he said, "If he's not MY god, then whose god is he?" That still makes this non-believer laugh.


Sheyna said...

Ugh wish I had seen this when my cousin posted that gem to her FB page. I would have posted your response -- with attribution of course...instead of turning the other cheek.