...of Yahell's vast mediocrity?

:D I'm getting rather fond of that wait-for-the-punchline titling tactic. Anyhow, this was just something I followed via sidelink, and figured what the hell, might as well provide some countering to the namby-pamby fangirly mushmouthed socioreligious reinforcement going on in the comments column.

You know, that only gets anywhere if people actually read it. :-| Why they don't have a top-load function like the Questions feature, I have no idea. But anyhow....here's the content in a slightly more visible forum, link first for info:


Isn't it nice that he found something to hold onto?

Seriously, people, this one celebrity's "getting religion" was still just his own personal sense of emptiness driving him to find something bigger. Great for him, but let's leave it at that. It doesn't mean that he has the right to generalize everyone else's decisions and beliefs and values as Godfearing or decadent/immoral, black or white, My Way or the highway, just 'cause he's found what currently works for him, at his relatively young and inexperienced/unquestioning stage of conscious life.

Celebrity names have far too much deliberate influence in the area of religion and spirituality, and I for one am tired of them being used as poster children and lobbyists for the right to harass and oppress others. No religion in the world has an absolute claim on truth -- no religion has the right to say that others are damned if they live outside the sanctioned fold. It's a lie, and an unfortunately longlived lie that's made human history a bloody shambles of extremism.

So get that beam out of your eye, Kirk, and stop playing optometrist to the world -- you're only making it worse. You're really not qualified to be anything more than a puppet for fundamentalism....try thinking outside that absolutist box of "heaven or hellfire." I'd be very happy to see you break free of this juvenile state of convert-zealotry, if that's possible.

*sigh* Yeah, if only people actually listened to common sense.....you know, the other problem with "celebrities" (as a social class and a psychological type) is that they really don't have any natural set-point for common sense, and thus tend to tip wildly between extremes of decadence and puritanism. Happy is the star who finds his own balance, preserves what talent he possesses, and makes neither a sacrifice nor a sectarian preacher of himself. 'Cause we got quite enough of that already going on here these days, goddammit....

Credocide --

[lit., "belief-killing", from the Latin credo, lit., I believe (root of the now-general religious term "creed") + -cide < caedere, to cut down, kill.]

The acute act or ongoing process of eliminating unfavoured/deviant beliefs/attitudes (and the persons who practice them without actual harm/insult to others) through persecution, violence, murder, expulsion, specialized discriminatory legislation, censorship, brainwashing/'re-education' or any other means other than that of rational and open civil discourse. Engaged in historically by most major religions (whether they'll officially admit it or not) and by all movements typically characterized as cults or totalitarianisms. The predominant unwritten and unprosecuted crime against the human intellect and spirit, committed or attempted by many without knowledge of what they do or why, driven only by that primal urge to remake the world of others in one's own image, regardless of whether or not it happens to be in their own best interests.

Very similar to genocide, but a helluva lot harder to prove in existing courts of law......

Some prime conspicuous examples: the expulsion of the Jews from Spain and the Spanish Inquisition, the conquests and forced conversions of the Americas, the Third Reich and the Holocaust, Stalinist purges and the gulags, China's Cultural Revolution, the Taliban and al-Qaeda, Scientology, the Bush II administration.....feel free to add on your own example or elaboration of intolerant absolutist philosophy/religion.

Yep, this is about the Pope's lecture and the Muslim uproar.  If you haven't read one of my hyper-intellectual theologistical screeds before, this may be a bit daunting, so I'll do you a minor (okay, major) favour and put the bulk of this behind an LJ-cut.  Aren't you happy now.

Some perceived assumptions and between-the-lines observations here:

* To put words in the mouths of those who feel justified in threatening violence against all who mention the historical (and recent) violence done in the name of Islam, I need only quote Curly Howard: "Hey!--I resemble that remark!!"

* I believe (as do most sane people, I think) that any religion that thinks it justified to kill others if they don't convert to it or adhere to its social mores is morally wrong. And regarding the difference between a social more and an actual crime, there are only a limited amount of things that one can consider as unequivocal crimes against others, and it's better to stick to the here and now (and already-born) in terms of determining what those offenses are so far as explicit law, rather than expanding/maintaining the list of assumed offences (according to sentiment and scriptural interpretation) without providing a clear and rationally-undeniable argument for each one's universal validity. This applies to all beliefs that want to expand their beliefs/practices into the general sphere of conduct -- they have to prove that whatever they want to forbid is actually and consistently a source of harm to all, regardless of whether it's done willingly or not. I.e., it should require an objective proof and not merely an emotional/scriptural one, if it's to be accepted as an objective and universal standard of restriction.

* If Pope Benedict should be called to task and made to apologize for anything in this particular case, it's for the many many instances in which the Roman Catholic Church has spread and maintained itself through the use of violence, harassment, censure & silencing, destruction, torture and execution. To this date, the Spanish Inquisition itself is officially conceded only as an unfortunate footnote and misunderstanding, rather than one of the most determined and aggressive acts of genocide (actually, I think I'll use the apter term "credocide"...) in history. That is the missing part of his speech, in terms of having any moral standing from which to speak. One cannot honestly attack the faults of another religion without admitting where they have been shared by one's own, and Palaeologos was likely in a far better position to make such a statement as he did than Pope Benedict would have been to declare it in his own right.

And no doubt I could expand on those last few paragraphs a good deal, but that's for other blogposts and such. In general, though, I think that everyone in the center of this is suffering from a widespread lack of understanding (or responsible explanation) of history, and that most are suffering (whether they'll ever admit it or not) from an unfortunate tendency to jump to vehemently outraged conclusions.

Is the concept of jihad against all "infidels" something that peaceable and civilized Muslims really ought to be defending as part-and-parcel of their religion's honour?--now there's a good question.

Not that anyone's actually going to dare to ask it, of course....

[All death threats/etc. will be read and responded to logically. Which incidentally comes from the Greek word/concept logos, which some understand to be the guiding principle of reason and justice and balance in the universe.......]


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