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Posts Tagged ‘religion’

Relics, shmelics: the Orthodox bone-worshiping circus is in town!

October 11, 2011 2 comments

Remember the good ol` days? Or should I say “ye goode olde days”, since I`m referring to the Dark Ages, when relic commerce was a flourishing business and any piece of cloth, random body part or splinter of wood could be sold off as a miracle-working relic of some saint or the other?

Think those days are over? Think again! In Romania, the Orthodox church makes a circus out of every occasion it gets to put rotten bones on display for the naive and brainwashed to adore. This is absurd, you might think. No, THIS.IS.ROMANIA!

As I was ranting about in a previous post the biblemongers around here are very prone to asking their imaginary friend in the sky for anything from good grades to lottery numbers. Which is part of the reason why they flock by the hundreds and camp out in front of churches where so-called “holy relics” are put on display.

This creates a grotesque spectacle of human degradation, which is readily enjoyed by the priest-vermin that pat their fat bellies as the masses literally trample each other to get to touch / kiss / lick / rub various body parts on the christian mummies. It has become habitual for the church to send relics around the country, import relics from “sister” churches in other orthodox countries, block traffic in major cities to parade relics and get the naive flock to stampede over who gets to leave their lip-prints on the asses  relics of the holy first.

The most recent such circus-act is happening as I type, in the city of Iasi, eastern Romania. As the date of  her celebration approaches (October 14th), the relics of Saint Parascheva are being taken out of the church and put outside on display, for people to adore her bodily remains in the most disgusting of ways. You could not imagine the amount of bodily fluids that are being exchanged there in the few days that the silver-cast reliquarium is available to the public: saliva, sweat, grease, are all mixed together in a disgusting cocktail that everybody contributes to as they ever-so-sheepishly lean in and kiss or touch the box. The Public Health authorities have warned the church many times about the health hazards this entails, but nobody would listen. More so, the priests were intrigued that one could even assume that something as holy as relics would allow illness. And even said “if you become ill after kissing the relics, it is because your faith is not strong enough.”

Meanwhile, the believers, whose faith in free food, cheap trinkets and the beneficial effects of french-kissing a mummy can not be dwindled by us mere “satanic atheists slave to the masonic conspiracy to overthrow the one true church™” are just now setting up camp in Iasi, training for the stampedes to follow. The local gypsies -turned – salesmen over night are also setting up camp, getting ready to sell plastic trinkets and cheesy icons and overpriced candles to the masses.  The obese filthy rich members of the clergy are also getting ready to watch the show from the best seats in the house, so there’s nothing left to do but wait for the circus to start.

My theist acquaintances (and even random strangers who somehow find out about my beliefs, or lack thereof) say to me frequently that I am somehow angry at their god, which is why I`m such a blasphemer and an atheist. I reply as frequently with two arguments: a) one cannot be angry at something that doesn’t exist, unless one suffers from serious mental health issues, and b) I do not have a problem with believers. Matter of fact, I will advocate freedom of thought any day (within the limits of common sense and the law; see here what happens when this is abused). What I do have a problem with, and always will have, is idiocy. I cannot idly stand by and watch fellow human beings degrade themselves, humiliate themselves publicly, expose themselves to risk, let their brains wither and die from lack of use, all in order to uphold their anachronistic, medieval faiths.

In closing, I leave you with this funny piece of material I found floating around the interwebs a couple of weeks ago, and I think it goes well with the topic of religious public circus that I`ve discussed herein.

religion

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Where religious freedom stops, and murder begins

October 4, 2011 2 comments

I woke up this morning to the news of a young woman’s death. Nothing special, one would be inclined to think, people die every day. But this case was special. And it made me angry to the point of screaming to the world “WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?!”

This young woman was 30 years old. She had been the victim of a car accident and had been committed to hospital care in her home town of Baia Mare, Romania. She had good chances of survival. All she needed was a damn blood transfusion. But guess what? She had the misfortune of being a Jehova’s Witness. Her family insisted that she not be given the transfusion that would have saved her life, because their religion forbids it. The doctors, bound by law – dealing with a person that, under the circumstances, could not decide for herself – had to abide. She never stood a chance. Even though the medical team tried their best, using  cult-approved substitutes for blood, and a battery of various drugs, the woman was too weakened by the accident, and the anemia she was previously suffering from to survive.

This case is tragic not only because a young woman died, but because a young woman died when she could well have lived, had it not been for the absurdities of religion. Of course the holier-than-thou romanian orthodox christians jumped to defend their own religion, even though nobody had even mentioned it, filling the internet with “no true scotsman” arguments. This is less important. What’s really important is the ethical debate that ensues: where does religious freedom stop, and murder start?

The Constitution of most countries in the world guarantees religious freedom. The Hypocratic oath that doctors around the world take when they begin their careers binds them to respect and preserve human life. In most countries, euthanasia (or assisted suicide, as it’s often called), is illegal. So, to conclude: it is considered murder if you help a suffering, terminally ill patient to die a peaceful, painless death, but it is seen as perfectly normal to let a young woman die because her religion forbids blood transfusions.

I, for one, find it absurd that it is considered illegal to stop someone’s suffering, but perfectly legal to idly stand by and let someone die when the means to save their life exist and are readily available. Also, I find another thing absurd: that some doctors refuse to perform abortions out of moral and / or religious conviction, and that the bible mongers picket abortion clinics and scream bloody murder whenever they get the chance, yet the same religious people let their own close relatives die, and that is, in turn, NOT murder…

The plot thickens, though, to reveal yet another dark side of religion: brain washing. There are 12 years between the ages of 18 and 30. Twelve full years when that poor young woman could have decided to abandon that murderous cult. But the effects of childhood brainwashing were so deep and irreversible, on the one hand, and there was no one there to help her see reason, on the other, that she was still a member of the cult at the time of the accident, therefore signing her own death sentence.

The questions remain, dear readers, and the debate could carry on for ages: who decides where religious freedom stops and murder begins? Why do the legislatures of the world stand idly by as cults of various denominations refuse medical care for their followers? Who is responsible for this young woman’s death? Is her family not as guilty as the person behind the wheel? And most importantly, one last question for all the believers out there: what kind of benevolent, all-knowing, all-seeing deity allows for these atrocities to happen? How long will you continue to worship an unfair, mass-murdering psychopathic figment of some primitive sheep-herder’s imagination and call him your god?

Later edit: after publishing this it occurred to me that it’s very very similar in content to a post by fellow Romanian atheist Zerg, which, if you can read Romanian, can be found here

The Orthodox Time-Machine: Back to the Past

September 20, 2011 4 comments

I usually don’t rant about things that might touch certain people’s sensibilities and offend them, because it’s the right thing to do and I`m a decent human being. NOT! I rant about offensive things ALL the time, and this is no exception.  If you’re offended by what you`re about to read, it means you’re too brainwashed by religion to understand the danger it poses to any individual with more than shit-for-brains.

Fact 1: Romania is a secular state.

Fact 2: Religion is taught to grades 1-12 in Romanian PUBLIC schools.

Fact 3: A highschool student has recently been humiliated in front of his peers by his religion teacher for being an atheist. This has gotten a certain amount of press coverage, bringing with it hundreds of comments from medieval, brainwashed orthodox christians calling the child and his supporters devil worshippers, and even going so far as issuing death threats towards atheists, and exposing their fundamentalist belief system. This made me feel a bit like I was living in Iran. And if things continue the way they are, with the church’s authority growing, and the clergy above and beyond the reach of law, Romania is soon to become a full-fledged theocracy. I hope it doesn’t.

Fact 4: This is not a singular case. In churches, Orthodox priests preach xenofobia, discrimination and hatred against any and all religions that are not Orthodox to people not intelligent enough to discern truth from orthodox brainwashing. No other christian denomination (that I know of) teaches it’s followers explicitly to discriminate against, hate, and socially isolate those that are not of the same faith. Talk about “Religion of love”, eh?  Fortunately, there is a positive aspect in all of this: the number of fundamentalists is still relatively low. Most orthodox believers are not as hate-fueled as the church would have them be. A number of believers adhere to orthodoxy for social reasons and less so from true belief, and they too have become very vocal against the abuses of the clergy.

Fact 5: In Romania there currently are 18.300 (eighteen thousand three hundred) churches, but only 4700 (four thousand seven hundred) middle schools and 425 (four hundred and twenty five!!!) hospitals.

Conclusion: If things continue on this downward spiral, with the State too afraid to put it’s foot down and stop treating the church like a porcelain doll, with priviledges growing every day and money being pumped from local budgets into the black hole of the churches`pocket, we’re not far from the days when the orthodox clergy will yet again build pyres for burning “infidels” like in the good`ol medieval times when they could rule with no questions asked. When I wished for a time machine, I never imagined the Orthodox Church had already built one, primed and ready to take Romania straight back to the dark ages.