Jesus was an ugly baby!

Courtesy of artur84 at FDP

Ever noticed how babies in old paintings looked like ugly old men? There is a reason for this, and it’s not because medieval people were bad at drawing! The reason behind the ugly babies will be explained in a moment, and with it comes proof that Jesus, if he was really the son of God, was an ugly baby.

Babies in medieval art look like hideous old men because they’re not really humans. Well, kind of. Most of the paintings are depictions of baby Jesus, and they were heavily inspired by the concept of a Homunculus.

The Homunculus (ho-mun-cu-lus) is latin for ‘little man,’ and this concept came about because philosophers believed that Jesus was born ‘perfectly formed and un-changed,’ this means that baby Jesus was just miniature adult Jesus, and with that came the old man look.

About half way through the Renaissance this all changed, what with both the ‘evolution’ of art, and the breakthroughs in human anatomy and perspective. Aiding this change was the fact that churches were no longer the only ones who could afford paintings, and normal people wanted cute babies, not Homunculi.

So, if Jesus was born ‘perfect and un-changed’ then he was a Homunculus, and he was a very, very ugly baby.

Want to see just how ugly Homunculi are? Visit this site. Some of the babies look like bald slugs, and photo number three is enough to give you nightmares! Quick warning: artists in the Renaissance weren’t into censoring their paintings, proceed at your own risk!

Image courtesy of artur84 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Questions for Christians #4

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It’s been a while, but the series is back with a bunch of new random questions for Christians.

If a hundred different religions have to be wrong for yours to be right, does this show that people from all over the world like to invent gods that don’t exist? And does this also mean that your religion is likely to be wrong?

Do you hear the voice of God? If so, how can you tell the voice of God from a voice in your head? And how can you tell the voice of God from the voice of Satan?

Rape wasn’t a crime in ancient times, does this explain why it is not on the Ten Commandments?

An all-knowing God can read your mind, so why does he require you to demonstrate your faith by worshiping him?

If you believe in a literal genesis, why did it take 6 days for God to make the universe? He could have done it all in less than a second.

If money is the root of all evil, why do churches need so much of it? Especially considering that Jesus said to give your wealth away.

If missionaries from your religion should be sent to convert people in other countries, should missionaries from other religions be sent to your country for the same reason?

If someone was cured of cancer by means unknown to us, and everyone declared it a miracle, would the chance of scientifically replicating this cure be more or less likely?

If aliens exist on several worlds that have never heard of your god, will they all be going to hell when they die?

Why are several stories from the Bible very, very similar to stories from other religions? Many of which pre-date the Bible, by the way.

The Questions for Christians homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of cuteimage at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The New Bible – Genesis 26

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Just after Jacob ‘bought’ Esau’s birthright there was a famine in the land, and chances are God is responsible – again. On an unrelated note, who knew people back then would murder you at the drop of a hat?

  1. There was a famine in the land, so Isaac went to Abimelek, king of the Philistines.

2. Suddenly God decided to show up, and he said unto Isaac, “Do not go to Egypt, live where I tell you to live!” And Isaac replied, “You’re not the boss of me!”

3. “What in God’s name – I mean my name – are you talking about!? Do as I say and I shall bless you” the Lord said.

4. “I shall keep the oath I made to Abraham, and your descendants shall be as numerous as the stars of Heaven” God said. “What happened to your oath with Abraham? He only had a few kids” Isaac asked.

5. “I don’t know… I work in mysterious ways” God replied.

6. So Isaac stayed in Gerar as God had commanded.

7. When the people of Gerar asked him about his wife, he lied and said that she was his sister, because back then if you had something someone else wanted they would kill you in a second.

8. When Isaac had been there for a time, Abimelek learnt that Rebekah was actually his wife, and he asked him why he had lied.

9. “Because you know how psychopathic ancient people are!” Isaac replied. “Why do you keep calling us ‘ancient people’?” Abimelek asked. “Oh, you’ll see” Isaac said.

10. So Abimelek gave orders to all the people. “Anyone who harms this man or his wife will be put to death” he said.

11. Isaac planted crops, and God blessed them, making them do the impossible and produce one hundredfold.

12. Isaac became rich, and the people of Gerar envied him, they filled in the wells that Abraham had dug before, and then realized what a stupid idea that was.

13. One day Abimelek said to him, “You must leave, you have become too powerful to stay here.”

14. So Isaac moved to the valleys of Gerar and started digging wells.

15. The herders of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herders over two of the wells, so they built a third, and all was well.

16. From there he traveled to Beersheba, and that night the Lord appeared before him, saying:

17. “I am the Lord of our father Abraham, and I am just reminding you that I haven’t forgotten my promise.”

18. So Isaac built an altar to the Lord and called on his name, and he built ANOTHER well!

19. After all of this Abimelek came to him with his personal adviser and the commander of his forces.

20. “What do you want?” Isaac asked.

21. “We saw that the Lord was with you, so to save our own skins we want to make a treaty with you, we never hurt you, and we sent you away peacefully, we want the same in return” Abimelek said.

22. Isaac agreed, and the treaty was made.

23. Meanwhile Esau married one of the Hittites, and this was a great source of grief for Isaac and Rebekah for some reason.

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Does it take ‘faith’ to ‘believe’ in atheism?

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Does it take ‘faith’ to ‘believe’ in atheism? Apparently quite a few Christians think so!

My guess is that because atheists point out that it takes faith to believe in God, and seeing as faith is not science, or facts, faith is not a good basis for belief, we have lots of people thinking that being an atheist requires ‘faith’. Even when I point out that faith goes by two definitions, belief without evidence and trust, (faith in atheism or science being the latter) generally whoever I am talking to still insists that it takes just as much faith to believe in atheism as it does to believe in God.

Okay then, it takes faith to believe in atheism/science. Therefor it takes faith to believe in anything! We have faith in the fact that rain falls down, we have faith in the fact that humans need water to survive. I believe that I had breakfast earlier, and we are all one big cult that believes that we can use the internet!

Depending on your definition, faith and belief can really be for anything, but just because for some reason you hold the position that it takes faith to believe in science does NOT mean that said faith is the same faith that you would have in God. Believing in the scientific method and observable evidence is in no way the same as believing in a deity because an ancient book told you to.

So we have established that religious faith is not the same as faith in the scientific method, therefor saying that it takes religious faith to believe in something like the big bang is ridiculous. Just because we weren’t there doesn’t mean that it is automatically the same as God. We have no proper evidence for God, but we do have proper evidence for the big bang. Just because you refuse to accept said evidence does not mean that we have religious faith.

Image Courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

On an unrelated topic, this is the 150th blog post!

The dangers of ignoring science

courtesy of Bill Longshaw

Both motivation and inspiration for this post came from this MSN New Zealand article, showcasing how people now stare at the sun as a means to lose weight. This issue is apparently ‘controversial’, but most of these crazy ideas and health trends are completely unsupported by science. Not only that, some of them are dangerous.

This just shows the dangers of not listening to science – or logic, for that matter. Staring at the sun is a stupid idea, and it has already been proven that it can cause severe damage to the eyes. Not only that, it is not a substitute for food! Human cells are unable to photosynthesize like plants, we are missing some of the chemicals involved. But I’m not writing this to rant about the (obvious) problems and dangers surrounding ‘sun eating’. Rather, I am here to showcase the dangers of ignoring science and logic as a whole.

Look at faith healing, the ridiculous placebo that a pastor commanding demons to be gone is enough to cure you of illness, and the countless people who have died as a direct result of this practice. Witch doctors, faith healing and all of that stuff doesn’t work. There are more (seemingly) plausible practices of using electromagnetic energy and other healing methods that I have not yet looked too deeply into, but we can all agree that religious faith healing is ineffective at best, and lethal at worst.

Ignoring, or at least not understanding, many of the scientific laws is a bad idea, look at what happens when you ignore physics like Newtons laws, angular momentum, hydrodynamics and other important principles. Just search ‘fail compilation’ on YouTube and you will find thousands of videos of people either ignoring, not understanding, or not taking into account scientific laws, producing a variety of painful and ridiculous results.

Image courtesy of Bill Longshaw at Flickr.com, image edited by mclasper.

The New Bible – Genesis 25

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Who knew that a 170 year old man could still have children and that birthrights could be sold?

  1. Abraham was done burying Sarah, so he immediately looked for another wife.

2. He found a wife, whose name was Keturah, and he had not just one son, or two, but SIX! Their names were Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah.

3. Abraham gave everything he had to Isaac,

4. but before he died, he gave gifts to his grand children and sent them away to the east. Looks like God kept his promise of Abraham having many descendants.

5. The next seven verses or so are just people having lots of kids with weird names, and there’s no need to bore people. This isn’t the real Bible, after all!

6. Now everybody knows that Abraham had Isaac,

7. and Isaac married Rebekah when he was forty.

8. Isaac prayed to the Lord because Rebekah was childless, and God, getting bored of everyone complaining to him, decided to grant their prayers instead of ignoring them to see if it would make a difference – it didn’t.

9. Rebekah became pregnant, and the Lord said:

10. “For some reason your children will become the leaders of two nations, because we don’t have enough of THOSE around! Anyway, one will be stronger than the other, but the older shall serve the younger. This is because I’m bored and I like messing with people.”

11. The oldest child was named Esau, and he was a skilled hunter, and Isaac preferred him,

12. The youngest child was named Jacob, and he preferred to stay at home in the tents.

13. Warning, the next verses are about to become stupid. If you are allergic to stupidity, read at your own risk. Readers may facepalm their faces off or lose all faith in humanity. Reader discretion is advised.

14. Once Esau was coming back from the country after a hunt, and we all know that you drop down dead if you don’t eat for a couple of hours.

15. “Quick! Give me some of that stew, I am about to die” Esau said.”

16. “Aren’t you being a bit over dramatic?” Jacob asked.

17. “JUST GIMMIE THE DAMN STEW!” Esau replied.

18. So Jacob said unto Esau, “First, sell me your birthright”

19. I warned you it got stupid.

20. So Esau sold Jacob his birthright, ignoring the fact that it is impossible, so Esau dispised his birthright.

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Giants in the Bible

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How can people take the Bible as a scientific account? Creationists have to believe in giants, dragons and all sorts of other creatures that we know are not real.

In this post we’ll talk about giants. They are first showcased by a verse in Genesis, shortly before the story of Noah’s ark.
“There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.” – Genesis 6:4
And races of people like the Amorites,the Emim and the Zuzim are mentioned several times in the Bible as being ‘as tall as cedar trees’ And let’s not forget Goliath.

The Creationist website, answers in genesis, gives a whole list of fossils of animals that used to be huge, but they forget a few things. Firstly, their list includes several giant insect species and several giant mammal species all together, but these creatures lived hundreds of millions of years apart! The giant ancestors of insects lived during the carboniferous period, where oxygen levels were very high, and this allowed the insects to get so huge. And the ancestors of modern rats, beavers and other animals lived in the mid Cenozoic era, which came way after the dinosaurs. But then again, Creationists don’t care about dating or rock layers, so they can make up all sorts of stupid ideas.

Secondly, these animals were not just ‘big versions’ of modern ones. Look at an ancient Entelodont, which was a carnivorous pig the size of a car, and compare it to a modern day wild pig, can you see the difference? These giant animals were not the same species as the ones that we see today.

Furthermore, humans aren’t supposed to get taller than 7 feet, any larger and our bodies start to become unable to support our weight. Humans are very poorly designed, and for us to get twelve feet or taller we would need some massive structural changes. Humans can reach 9 feet at a push, but as tall as cedar trees? Even giant humans that we can observe today do not function as well as ‘normal sized’ humans.

And if these giant humans existed, why are there no fossils? That same answers in genesis page states that fossils are ‘hard to find’ and that humans would be smart enough to ‘avoid being buried in sediment’, but firstly, we should have found some evidence by now, and secondly, flash floods and mudslides are not the only ways fossils are formed! All a giant would have to do is die in an area near water, or a swamp, where their bones can be sealed in mud.

Science: 1, Bible: 0

Image courtesy of Janaka Dharmasena at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Does believing in God make you gullible?

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Does religion make people gullible? You could argue that gullible people are more likely to be religious, as opposed to the other way around, but does that claim have any credibility? First off, let’s define the word ‘gullible’.

Usual definitions of the word ‘gullible’ include:
easily persuaded to believe something.
easily deceived or cheated.

Now let’s look at some of the evidence we have for religion making people gullible.

There have been several cases of people being cheated out of their money, and it happens all the time in one form or another. Take for instance faith healing or witch doctors. Faith healers are either ignorant, or malicious, cheating people out of money and giving them an ineffective placebo in return. And a few months ago, here in New Zealand, witch doctors were cheating the Indian community out of their money, telling them that they could cure them of demons and curses. In fact, most Churches trick people into giving money, telling them that they will be rewarded by God.

Furthermore, religion already demands that people believe what others tell them to. It’s bad enough that you have to accept an ancient book as a fact, but then you have priests, preachers and other ‘holy men’ expressing their opinions and dogma and then claiming that it is the word of God. Dear Christians, If God doesn’t like the way I live, let him tell me, not you. At least I’d be able to verify whether it really is the word of God and not just your opinions disguised as divine will.

Religions also have strong ties with cults, which are just a stronger form of religion. If you already believe that a guy named Jesus, who was the son of God, came down to earth and did all these things, how much of a stretch is it to believe that the random guy on the street corner claiming to be Jesus is not delusional?

If you’re not a logical, intelligent person, religion can make you gullible, and it can make you both delusional and broke. So be careful if a random human is telling you something and claiming that it is the word of God.

The New Bible – Genesis 24

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God still hasn’t gotten around to giving Abraham that land he was promised.

  1. So Abraham was old, and stricken with age, the Lord blessed him, but he still wasn’t giving him any land.

2. Abraham said to his oldest servant (i.e. slave),

3. “Swear to me that you will not go and find a wife for Isaac in the land of the Canaanites,

4. instead go to my country, and find one out of my people.”

5. And the servant replied, “What if they are not willing to follow me here? Should I take Isaac with me?”

6. And Abraham said, “No, God said that he will send some help if anything happens. But do not take Isaac with you, because… reasons”

7. So the servant swore an oath to Abraham and the Lord, and he left, taking with him ten camels.

8. The servant made his way out to the town of Nahor, and went to go and water all of his camels at the well.

9. And he prayed to the Lord, saying, “The people of the town will be coming out to gather water soon, and I’m gonna need a sign to tell me which is the right one”

10. And the Lord replied, “Do I have to do EVERYTHING around here!? Fine, what sort of sign do you want?”

11. The servant replied, “When the daughters of the town come out, let it be that the one who waters my camels is the one that has been chosen for Isaac”

12. And before he had done speaking, standing there, talking to himself, Rebekah came out, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, with her pitcher upon her shoulder.

13. She watered his camels, and the servant wondered if God had kept his word for once.

14. The servant took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold, and said,

15. “Whose daughter are you? I must speak to them. I must also move in for the night.”

16. And she said unto him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor,

17. and we have plenty of room for you to stay in.”

18. The servant praised the Lord, even though God hadn’t really done anything.

19. And Rebekah went to her house, and told her family what had happened.

20. And Rebekah had a brother, and his name was Laban: and Laban ran out unto the man, he said,

21. “Come in, even though I have no evidence that you are blessed by the Lord I will mindlessly assume that you are telling the truth.

22. So the servant ungirdled his camels and joined the family.

23. He said, “I will not eat until I have told you why I am here,

24. I am the servant of Abraham,

25. And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he has given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses. And donkeys too.

26. And he told me to come out here and look for a wife for his son.”

27. And after the servant had told his LONG story the family said,

28. “Okay then, without any say from our daughter, we say that you can take her to be the wife of Abraham’s son.”

29. And so they set off, and soon enough they had returned to the land of the Caananites,

30. and Rebekah became Isaac’s wife.

The New Bible homepage can be found here.

Image courtesy of Vectorolie at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

God is actually a volcano!

This video by Thunderf00t talks about the story of the Ten Commandments, where Moses walks up a giant volcano about four times and acts like a clumsy dimwit by dropping the first set of rules. He also survives 40 days without food and water camping on top of the volcano, which just might have been God.

Some of the things described in the Bible point to the ancient people mistaking a volcano for a deity, just like they did with lightning, earthquakes and other natural phenomenon.