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Senior Church of England Bishop says gays must “repent and be changed”

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  1. This is just opportunism from the bishop we don’t want to goto your empty churches and have nothing to repent.

    Just how many old women in blue rinses are left to keep this outdated institution going?

  2. There is a market for exorcists in England !!!!!

  3. Edward in Los Angeles 5 Jul 2009, 5:11am

    Poor old bigot…

  4. Separation of Church and State NOW please.

  5. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 6:53am

    I have been inside Rochester Cathedral. Inside it’s wonderful, tall, greystone walls you take up that sence of history it radiates through the craft-mens carvings made centurys ago. The whole fabric of the building is steeped in history. And all this is run by a Cyclops called Dr. Nazir-Ali….Ye Gads Sir. Beam me up Scottie!

  6. Kinda reminds ya of that old serpent Mark Twain known to have said:

    “Faith is believing what you know ain’t so.”

  7. Keep on being anti-gay and homophobic Bishop, because it just makes us stronger and stronger.

  8. Pete & Michael 5 Jul 2009, 8:02am

    When will these god-bothers ever let people get on with their own lives. We only have one life, instead of the so called ‘christans’ mouthing off they should embrace the Love that dares to speak its name.

  9. Dave North 5 Jul 2009, 8:28am

    If it weren’t for Equality laws, this old bigot wouldn’t be sitting there with that dog collar on.

    “I have my equality”, but you’re not getting yours, seems to be his attitude.

    What a loathsome hypocrite.

  10. I am tempted, sorely.
    But I have already wittered longggg and loudly.
    Too long; too loudly many (most) would say.

    I give up!

    Bishop!
    What is there to repent OF…?
    What can be ‘changed’?
    Homosexuality in a person is as immutable as his/her height unless you advocate either the rack or a chain-saw.
    One repents and carries out reparation for a crime.
    It has been far too hot all this week; go tell the sun to repent of that; you might just as well, because it is all part of the way things are; natural, no choice, no asking whether we wanted it to be that way or not; go buy a fan! Deal with it! Don’t criticise it!
    You cannot do anything about it, much less bleedin’ well ‘change’ it, you daft old bugger.!
    “Get out into the world, oh and by the way, I’ve made you homosexual..”…saith the Lord.
    End of.
    To be homosexual is not a crime, as I think you and your mate Benedict xvi readily admit.
    Only the engagement in sexual activity in accordance with that activity is a crime in the eyes of God, you say.

    But who are you to say what God says?
    Have you some God given right, a direct line and please don’t sell me a Bible!
    Are you seriously enforcing virtually universal celibacy, from China to Chile, Australia to Alaska?
    You’ve a job on your hands if you are.
    Your silly power-dressing just makes me laugh as heartily as at any Chrimbo panto; so I am not in awe on that scawe…or should that be in ‘ore on that score’.
    And camp Benny’s dressing-for-impressing is an even bigger hoot.

    I digress.

    Does God speak DIRECTLY to you?
    He is my father too; why does he not speak to me directly?
    What is so special about you and our Benny..?
    If I had kids and I had something important to tell them I would tell each of them individually, not get one of my other kids to relay what I had said to the rest of the unwashed, dirty, little mob, from on high, dressed up daftly.
    It all sounds like paternalism, on your part, to me.

    You clerics, from here to Tehran, all give yourselves such AIRS; the actual, ‘-ism you espouse is irrelevant.

    May universal secularism arrive and quickly!

    I would only have a couple of kids; God has had upwards of 500 trillion, I guess, since Adam were a lad.
    But He is God and that would make no never-minds to Him.
    God speaks to no-one through anyone.
    And the only ones who believe that, are those have their own self-interests to the fore.
    Save your own soul, Bishop, and don’t be bothering what others are doing; life’s too short.

    Keep your silly nonsense to yourself.

    Maybe Osama needs you as one of His sunbeams; Jesus’ message certainly has gone way over your head.

    Long may your churches empty.

    I’m going on too long again.
    Long – handled stage hook left.

    Keith.

  11. The Ancient English is ‘forboding…’
    The Ancient Latin is ‘prescience…’
    This is afflicting me bi-lingually as I write.
    I feel a RealityCheck moment comin’
    You marketh my Wordsworth..!

    K

  12. He just doesn’t get it.

  13. Complain now 5 Jul 2009, 10:44am

    I think it is time to turn around this homophobic bashing – how would Mr NAZI feel if we said that ASIANS need to repent and be CHANGED?

  14. Complain now 5 Jul 2009, 10:47am

    enquiries@rochester.anglican.org

    Just sent this email

    Why don’t you tell your DR NAZI to keep his homophobic mouth firmly closed.

    How would he feel if a prominent public figure said MUSLIMS needed to repent and be CHANGED?

    How dare he – no wonder so many churches are empty with HATE MONGERS AND FASCISTS at the forefront of them

    Jeff Duncan
    Dundee

  15. Complain now – I’m glad it wasn’t just me that noticed… but did you notice that if you take the “r” and attach it to the second-half of his double-barrel moniker you get Dr Nazi Rali! You couldn’t make it up :)

  16. michael liverpool 5 Jul 2009, 10:56am

    I will change my sexuality the day this idiot bleahces his skin to become white. The Bible condones slavery as long as the slaves are foreign. He is lucky he’s living in a democracy where welcome diversity like ours where he can get away with coming out with total crap coming out of his mouth. God forgive him that’s all I can say.

  17. The Bishop’s comments are distasteful – he shares exactly the same platform as the BNP and National Front. Homophobia and racism go hand in hand – just alter one or two words in his quote and see what we get:

    “We welcome black people, we don’t want to exclude people, but we want them to be white and be changed.”

    Colour and sexuality are exactly the same – we were born gay, the Bishop was born brown – saying he welcomes all social groups to his church but then condemning an integral part of their genetic make-up is arrant nonsense, no doubt Hitler would have said the same thing about the Jews. Same difference.

  18. the bish’s email address bishop.rochester@rochester.anglican.org
    his secretary bishops.secretary@rochester.anglican.org
    and his chaplain chaplain@rochester.anglican.org

    Tel: 01634 842721
    Fax: 01634 831136

  19. I think a ‘moon-in’ is called for; an organised ‘moon-in’; a collective dropping of kecks and clouts in Rochester Cathedral.

    And another when that other fascist sets foot on U.K. soil, HHBXVI.
    One million people were at the PRIDEFEST, is that right?
    Imagine the po-leece trying to up-kecks and clouts on a million botties…
    The mind boggles.
    Whaddya fink, RealityCheck?
    Up for it…?

    Keith.
    HAZELBLEARSFORD.

  20. #15
    Thomas.
    Exactly Thomas and succinctly put.

    I am too busy being flippant on here to comment effectively.
    That is because I am so angry still with this ‘religious’ scum after 50 years of it that the only way I can handle it is to mock it.
    The alternative is to burn down every last place of worship.

    Did I say ‘worship’…?

    Keith.

  21. a collective moonin sounds like a marvellous idea Keith….the pope may get rather excited though….when is the old fart due?…we all know how he loves his dresses and surrounds himself with lots of men…..i often wonder how he gets time to spread all his hatred when he’s probably busy sneakin rent boys into the Vatican

  22. Commander Thor 5 Jul 2009, 11:57am

    We welcome bigots, we don’t want to exclude people, but we want them to repent and be changed.

  23. flapjack: Ha, Dr Nazi Rally, how apt :)

  24. Julian Morrison 5 Jul 2009, 12:05pm

    For goodness sake, just hurry up and formally schism. Quit your parasitic abuse of the press credentials of the C of E. Later, when you’re the bishop of the mainly Africa-based “church of straight”, we’ll see how much news coverage you get!

  25. We need to be very vigilant.

    There is a backlash in the air from fundamentalists of all hues, from middle England’s Blue Rinse Brigade et Ali, to the Church of the Holy Manx Pixie-ring; and it is gathering momentum.

    Many hard won changes in the law are in jeopardy of repeal, ok, not today, I certainly won’t see it, but not too far off.
    Pendulums have a nasty habit of ‘swinging’ and the pendulum of moral rectumtude is ‘swinging’ now, for several reasons, not all of them to do with sexual orientation.

    Sexual orientation (yours) will just be the whipping-boy.

    And what you have in Iran, you will have here unless there is loud protest on every level, every day, at every step.
    For a start, dis-establishment of the Chuch of England needs to be enacted and religious factions made subject, in all respects, to the civil code.
    ‘Enery VIII didn’t go far enough; he should have shut the lot but different times….
    Religion cannot be necessary in the today’s world; it has already been amply shown to be nothing but the cause of divisiveness and murderous death since time began.
    And we certainly do not need to be spoken down to from on high from a geezer in drag in Rochester, or that other geezer in drag in Rome.
    We are not the illiterate peasants that those fascists in those offices think we are; them days is done; deference is dead.

    Keith.

  26. Keith’s comments very timely as we bask in the overwhelming success of London Pride yesterday, we should all be aware that a cloud of religious intolerence hovers on the horizon. I don’t think the blue-rinse reference is quite so relevent these days though – from the top deck of a bus on the parade I was heartened by the warmth of the crowd – heterosexual shoppers/visitors were smiling and waiving, enjoying the colourful procession – particularly blue/pink rinse old ladies. They are not the enemy within nowadays. The tiny group of protestors were largely either silly old white male god-botherers with an unhealthy obsession with anal sex, gawky National Front social misfits and the black christian fanatics. The dirty mac old white men with their long-winded scripture boards no-one ever bothers reading are dying out the BNP bovver boys know they are ridiculous, it is the rapid growth of the african evangelical and the muslim fundamentalist groups who pose the greatest threat to our community and indeed our wider liberal society.

  27. NURSE!! SOMEBODY GET KEITH HIS MEDICATION. HE’S FALLEN OUT OF BED AGAIN!

  28. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 1:02pm

    Keith we all love you. So ‘Rock-on!’ (I think the modern saying is!) Hic! I’m having a wee dram!

  29. Colour and sexuality are exactly the same – we were born gay; Suggests that Black people cannot be Gay! Colour and sexuality are not the same.

  30. Keith, PLEASE will you send what you have written above to the old fool in Rochester? Please. You’re a a brilliant writer, Keith. Well done!

    I hope everyone is emailing all of the address above even if only to say, “You’re stupid damned fool! Ditch your bigotry now! Ditch your collar, ditch your long dress, join the real world, and live!”

  31. bishop.rochester@rochester.anglican.org
    bishops.secretary@rochester.anglican.org

    A template for a quick letter:

    Dear Michael Nazi Rali,

    You really are a damned fool! Join the real world! Ditch your silly collar, your silly dress, your silly received ideas, and get real!

    You’re a laughing stock and an embarrassment.

    Stop your bigotry and your foolish homophobia NOW.

    Sincerely,

  32. Commander Thor:

    “We welcome bigots, we don’t want to exclude people, but we want them to repent and be changed.” Post 20.

    Interesting twist. That’s what I call talented leadership, Commander.

  33. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 2:07pm

    bentham,
    I wonder what the Cammander is Commander of..?.A Kindergarden perhaps!

  34. This Bishop is a Muslim Apostate – he should be sent to Helmand Province in Afghanistan to protect other Muslim converts there.The Taliban would welcome him and give him a thorough beheading!

  35. How on earth does an old bigot like this awful B O R get to such high office. I am nearly 80, and I am horrified that a person with these thoughts and feelings are allowed to practice. The horrible old creature needs sending back to where he came from. Or change his colour and repent.

  36. You may write me down in history
    With your bitter, twisted lies,
    You may trod me in the very dirt
    But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

    Does my sassiness upset you?
    Why are you beset with gloom?
    ‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
    Pumping in my living room.

    Just like moons and like suns,
    With the certainty of tides,
    Just like hopes springing high,
    Still I’ll rise.

    Did you want to see me broken?
    Bowed head and lowered eyes?
    Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
    Weakened by my soulful cries.

    Does my haughtiness offend you?
    Don’t you take it awful hard
    ‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
    Diggin’ in my own back yard.

    You may shoot me with your words,
    You may cut me with your eyes,
    You may kill me with your hatefulness,
    But still, like air, I’ll rise.

    Does my sexiness upset you?
    Does it come as a surprise
    That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
    At the meeting of my thighs?

    Out of the huts of history’s shame
    I rise
    Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
    I rise
    I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
    Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
    Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
    I rise
    Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
    I rise
    Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
    I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
    I rise
    I rise
    I rise.

    Maya Angelou

  37. Niki – I should clarify – colour and sexuality are the same in as far as they are part of who we are and part of the make-up we are born with, of course they are not mutually exclusive and of course there are as many gay black, brown and all shades inbetween as there are white peope who are gay too. Although I have come across plenty of african or caribbean people that argue being gay is ‘a white man’s disease’ which of course is as laughably absurd as the Bishop’s ridiculous comments! Our multi-colour multi sexuality is a diversity we should all celebrate not denigrate as does the Bishop and BNP followers who share his views on gay people.

  38. Will the Scouser 5 Jul 2009, 2:36pm

    My policy is to love the bigot while hating the bigotry.

  39. Joe,

    I so enjoyed your poem. Thank you for it. So full of truth with a message.

  40. Anyway am I rambling again or don’t I remember seeing Mr. Nazir Ali as fawner-in-chief at the side of the late, great H.M.Q.E. the Q.M., R.I.P..?

    Would he be so vociferous and uppity now, were she still treading the boards?

    Or, had he come out with this garbage prior to elevation, would he not have been quietly ‘overlooked’.?
    She packed a punch, did t’owd lass, in high places; had clout in spades.

    Her Majesty’s household was staffed almost to the rafters with gentlemen of a certain ‘proclivity’, from what I have read.
    She herself would not have a bad word said about her ‘boys.
    So what is the man on about, now that it is safe to do so..?

    If I do not remember the good bishop in that role, a-leaning on the arm of H.M Q.M and having her M’s ear, then I must be wrong.
    But I don’t fink I am…

    Keith.
    SALFORD.
    God’s county.
    Well Hazel’s anyway…for now.

  41. i think he should watch Betty Bowers Explains Traditional Marriage to Everyone Else on youtube its so funny as its all in his bible a man who rapes a women must marry her acording to the bible hmm funny how we dont see that now as for the people who bash northren ireland i could class you all the same as this guy but i dont because i know not everyone over there is a bigoit just like not everyoner over here is racest classing everyone the same as one person is wrong and flase blessings of love and light

  42. # 24
    RobN
    Babe..!
    You have made my day…!
    It has been such a long time since I had a wee drop of the old Sarson’s for me chips off you, you cheeky, acerbic likkle thing, you!
    Where’ve you bin?
    I thought you’d dee-vorsed me..!
    You have made a pathetic, worfless old tit very happy, today.
    Don’t do it to me again…the withdrawal simpsons are just too much…!
    Luv you buckitts…!
    Keith Symptom.
    ………………and as a spesh treat….?

    Look..!
    No upper case, shoutin’ atcha and no tellin’ you where I am from ‘ad nauseam’…like this…SALFORD…UPPER CASE – AND WHERE I AM FROM – ALL IN ONE…!!
    Oh and btw.
    It is NUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUURSE…!
    Plain, simple ‘Nurse…’..?..
    Too gentile; troppo sotto voce; too meek and mumble…
    It’s..NUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUURSE…!!!
    Get’s attention, see…!
    mwa mwa mwa mwa…!
    K

  43. Joe, thank you for that excellent verse from Maya Angelou. I have sent a copy to the Bish, as follows.

    _________________________________________

    Dear Michael Nazi Rali,

    You would do well to recall the words of Maya Angelou (see below), and to stop seeking to ingratiate yourself with the white Dickensian element of the British Establishment.

    Yours sincerely,

  44. Joe, thank you for that excellent verse from Maya Angelou. I have sent a copy to the Bish, as follows.

    Dear Dr. Nazi Rali,

    You would do well to recall the words of Maya Angelou (see below), and to stop seeking to ingratiate yourself with the white Dickensian element of the British Establishment.

    Sincerely,
    Suzy.

  45. Reminds of the hilarious Monty Python’s sketch…
    “IT’S…THE….BISHSHSHSHSOPPP…!
    Utoob it..!
    Hilarious…

    Keith.

  46. Commander Thor 5 Jul 2009, 3:44pm

    Brian Burton, post 34, that was uncalled for! Now pickup your toy and go and sit in the corner!

  47. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 4:16pm

    Commander Thor, Of course it was called for, I needed your reply to tell me who you really are….another Cyclops!

  48. Commander Thor 5 Jul 2009, 4:19pm

    Brian Burton, post 47, What, for wanting to turn the old bigot into an open-minded, well-rounded and sensible human being?

  49. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 4:21pm

    Commander Thor,
    Of course it was called for, I needed to confirm who you are….Another Cyclops!

  50. Commander Thor 5 Jul 2009, 4:24pm

    Oh no, I’ve broken the Brian Burton, its repeating itself all over now :(

  51. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 4:37pm

    Thor…..You silly Queen of the May, impshy! wave your wand and make yourself vanish!

  52. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 4:41pm

    Commander Thor, he is the original Pagan!

  53. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 4:47pm

    Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor Commander Thor
    Catch the Name Boys and Girls? It’s HIM AGAIN, crawled out from under his ROCK!

  54. It seems unfortunate that the press release of the group headed by Ali claims that they have received a letter from the Queen stating that she understands their concerns. Does this include the attitude of Ali and others towards gay people? If this is this case surely it involves the Queen in taking sides against a large number of British people. This, in itself, should create a constitutional crisis raising concerns about the position of the monarchy and of the established church of which she is the supreme governor.

  55. Astounding!
    An Anglican bishop who is not a moral relativist!

  56. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 5:11pm

    Neville,
    I think the Bishop and his ilk are playing the PANIC card. They have the gaul to involve the Queen, they know she can be used to an extent but also know she cannot defend herself publicly.

  57. Dear Michael NAZI r-Ali, you can take your magic book the Holy Bubble and stick it up your bloody f_cking colossal stupid black A.S.S.

    ps.: drop dead now please thanx

    ps2.: I would never repent becose my boyfriend’s colossal COCK is better than your stupid inexistent gods:

    1. The imaginary friend who became a tranny;
    2. The earthly tranny who was his own father;
    3. The ghost locked up in the closet

    THERE IS NOTHING AS GAY AS CHRISTIANITY, GET A REAL LIFE!!!!!!

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  58. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 5:17pm

    Keith,
    What’s going on in SALFORD? People shooting each other? Send them to Rochester!

  59. The Bishop looks like he’d make a great drag queen. Just look at those shining lips!

    I think he’s a secret lipgloss bitch.

  60. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 5:49pm

    There are moments, psychologists tell us, when the passion for sin, or for what the world calls sin, so dominates a nature, that every fibre of the body, as every cell of the brain, seems to be instinct with fearful impulses. Men and woman at such moments loose the freedom of their will. They move to their terrible end as automatons move. Choice is taken from them, and conscience is either killed, or, if it lives at all, lives but to give rebellion it’s fascination, and dissent it’s charm.

  61. #58
    What’s going on in SALFORD, Brian…?
    Nowt much.
    Hazel Blears is waiting for the chop, I think, courtesy of the Daily Telegraph.
    The Beeb is moving here from Larndarn; I think it’s the Beeb, any road up; it might be the other lot; dunno; care even less; haven’t got a telly; have had one since 19god-knows-when; 1973, I think.
    Acres of ‘buy to let’ aaarpaahhttmonts for sale by the SALFORD QUAYS -all made out of ticky-tacky; all looking exactly the same.
    And loads of hot wind from my little flat at the constant reminder that silly old goats still keep taking a pop at summat they nowt about and can do even less about; 50 years-odd I have heard the same old reverend irrelevants talking the same old irrelevance.
    Tits!
    Keith.
    BLEARSFORD…BUT NOT FOR MUCH LONGER?

  62. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 6:38pm

    Keith,
    It said on the news,there has been shoot-outs in Salford. Stay in doors.

  63. #30
    Eddy!
    Stop it!
    You’ll turn a girl’s head!…all 6’7″ of her…!
    “Brilliant writer…”..?…
    The very idea.!
    Tush tush…!
    “Brilliant”…me ?
    No!
    VERY ANGRY?
    Definitely.
    50+ years bloody angry at the shite these knobheads spout from their interpretations of some book(s) or other.
    Quentin Crisp was right, ‘religion is for priests’
    The sooner this country is secularised by Act of Parliament, the better.
    The sooner religion is relegated to the status of Origami at local night school, also the better.
    But I am wishing for the moon; it’ll never happen; too many vested interests; too much money involved; too many Pharisees counting too many pennies.
    Jesus, for all His divinity, didn’t a good enough job in driving them out of the temple.
    That’s why I must repeat; vigilance and vehemently strident opposition at every step, every day, from every gay, in every way.
    Complacency and sit-backitude at what has been achieved so far will be lost.
    Fundamentalist religionists of every hue are chipping away at hard won freedoms, from black African bishops in Nigeria and fringe loonies in Connecticut, U.S.A. exorcising a minor, to the sumptuously clad, Alitalia flying, Bishop of Rome.
    And am I right to use the word ‘freedom’..?
    It’s just the right to be left in peace to get on with playing the deck of cards we were dealt, same as any bugger else in life; not too much to ask, is it?
    Not a ‘freedom’, is it?
    Nazir Ali!
    Go fuddle your cludgie…!

    Keith

  64. Dr Nazir-Ali told the Sunday Telegraph: “We want to uphold the traditional teaching of the Bible……”

    OK, so let’s see what the Bible says (Leviticus 20:13) on the matter of homosexuality:

    “If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination…..”

    So far, so sinful. However, it continues:

    “………they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them”.

    In other words, this Bishop, a member of our legislature no less, has just advocated mass murder.

    This, of course, is a matter for the police who will be obliged to investigate if you make a complaint.

    Oh, and that’s before we even get onto the bits about killing adulterers and non-believers (which includes followers of other faiths) etc.

    This is what people who advocate living according to the Bible never seem to get – the streets would be knee-deep in blood within the hour.

    Arse.

  65. Karl (59): provocative … the bish speaks in the first person plural, and also has beautifully capped teeth. Wouldn’t take much; contact lenses, a little blush…a Tina Turner wig, a sexy-sax…and presto…how do you spell freedom: r-e-s-p-e-c-t!

    Seeroisly though, but just for a minute, is the oracle of Rod-chester, implying that here are two (2) C of E’s, and that Sa Majesté has chosen.

    A letter, Neville, a press release? Tell me more.

    Brian, vanished? Or went up the tree for a make-over. The fondness for the argumentative = unmistakably imperatif. Guess who?

    c.j.: You’ve found a bf!!! Lucky him! Arf! Arf!

  66. Wow
    OMG
    Crikey

    65 threads in one day . . . must be a record

    Well done some fantastic comments so far, lets get those e-mails rolling to Nasty Nazi Nazir

    . . . and will Mr Nazir be asking the African churches to repent of their heterosexual practices . . . Polygamy.

    Strange . . . does it say in the Bible that a man can lay with two or more women.

  67. #62.

    More shoot-outs, Brian..?
    I didn’t hear nowt.
    It’ll be that Ma Baker-Blears again an’ her boys..

    K
    Yes, someone comments on here.
    “WOW…60 + comments on here about this mouthy Nasir Ali dweeb”.

    Sure got some folks all riled up good style.
    Someone else said very early on, “Separation of Church and State now please…”

    DAVID at #4, it was.

    Right now,very please..

    K

  68. Yep I agree separation of church and state . . . as soon as possible.

    I agree Keith with the pendulum analogy . . . lets fight as best we can to hold on to the rights with have gained.

  69. Get this:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jun/22/church-england-cut-bishops (‘The Church of England may cut number of bishops to save money’)

    So the bishop of Rochester may find that he’s purified himself out of a job.

  70. I sent this email today:

    Mr. Michael Nazir-Ali,

    I have recently read reports of your comments in the telegraph.co.uk on Sunday 5th July 2009 regarding sexual orientation issues.

    If it is true that your message to those who identify as gay is to ‘change and repent’ then I am afraid that you are taking a position which is indefensible given our current level of human scientific knowledge.

    Furthermore, the unfounded and naïve comments that you have reportedly expressed are likely to cause hurt and distress to many individuals, at the very least. Whilst I do not wish to enter a debate with you regarding the naturalism of diverse sexual expression (including homosexuality), I do fear that your ill-educated position on this topic may publicly be given a false sense of legitimacy owing to your other, unrelated, ministerial credentials.

    There is a great amount of research into the psychological effects of homophobia in the field of counselling and psychotherapy. This research, as in wider fields, overwhelmingly points to the naturalism of gay love and expression. Although we now live in a progressively understanding and more educated society the pressures of heterosexism and homophobia still exist and, at worst, lead young persons, through chronic trauma, to take their own lives rather than come to terms with their sexuality. The public expression of such ‘teachings’ that you suggest – from your own personal interpretation of scripture – supposedly as representative of the word of God lead to further oppression and potential mental illness and even premature death. In the face of such daily realities, I have to ask: are you so sure? Are you sure enough to embrace the cultural role that you play in these deaths?

    I find your homophobic expressions unloving, ill-educated and contrary to the role of a ‘spiritual guide’. I therefore ask you to desist from public statements that concern the sexual expressions of others. After all, if you were to understand (and live by) Jesus’ teachings, you would realise that the only set of attitudes, beliefs and actions that you may judge are your own. I would suggest that you have plenty of work to do on this basis, before branching out!

    I sincerely hope you reflect deeply on this matter.

  71. Just tried to post this, but it didn’t ‘take’. According to the Guardian, the Church of England’s thinking of cutting its number of bishops because of falling congregations. So it appears that Bishop Nazir-Ali’s not exactly getting an influx of the joyous faithful turned on by his message. The poor man’s job may even be on the rocks!

  72. david skinner 5 Jul 2009, 9:42pm

    Bentham, post 6, I am glad you quoted Mark Twain with: “Faith is believing what you know ain’t so.” He also said towards the end of his life:

    “ Men are born, they labour and sweat and struggle; they squabble and scold and fight; those they love are taken from them, and the joy of life is turned to aching grief. The release comes at last and they vanish from a world where they were of no consequence….. A world which will lament them for a day and forget them forever.” Garry Frisch, Kevin Greening, Jarman, Higgins were also men who considered themselves to be nothing more than lumps of meat, puddles of water or so many ounces of fat, potassium and sulphur. What a pointless and futile existence.

    Francis Bacon, the alcoholic and sodomite painter who died in 1992 said this:

    Also, man now realizes that he an accident, that he is a completely futile being, that he has to play out the game without reason. I think that even when Velasquez was painting, even when Rembrandt was painting, they were still, whatever their attitude to life, slightly conditioned by certain types of religious possibilities, which man now, you could say, has had cancelled out for him. Man now can only attempt to beguile himself for a time, by prolonging his life- by buying a kind of immortality through the doctors ( ask Lord Chris Smith). You see, painting has become – all art has become – a game by which man distracts himself. And you may say that it has always been like that, but now it’s entirely a game. What is fascinating is that it’s going to become much more difficult for the artist, because he must really deepen the game to be any good at all, so that he can make life a bit more exciting..” Just a bit, Francis?

    I am so glad that I am not a Greek mythical creature called a heterosexual, chimera, a hippogriff or cynocephali, but a man. In fact I regard it as heterophobia (not that I am into this naming game) to call me by any other name. Yet to all who receive Jesus Christ, to those who believe in his name, he gives the right to be called a child of God – a child born not of natural descent, nor of husband’s will, but born of God.

  73. I don’t agree with the disestablishment of the C of E. It would
    only create a powerful indepedent church along the lines of America. Better the state has some control and input its affairs.

    As for Nazir-Ali, well, it the likes of him that make people vote for the BNP but for entirely different reasons.

    All the best.

  74. Everyone disgusted by this bigtory should check out the likes of the British Humanist Association and the National Secular Society. As the song says, it’s where all the good people go.

  75. Brian Burton 5 Jul 2009, 9:59pm

    David Skinner,
    You Black-hearted Baggage, you Con-man, you Scab on the nose of society, you weak silly soft Queeny bitch. Prove to us you are not a deranged scum-bag degenerate. Oh! by the way ducky, when did you last sleep with a man?

  76. Humanist . . . I second that.

    Humanity is so important, so essential, so sadly neglected by the hate filled God squad.

  77. Vincent Poffley 5 Jul 2009, 10:21pm

    Ah, Mr. Skinner again…

    Indeed there is no great purpose in the cosmos – we are but stardust caught up in the grand, pointless slow-dance of the universe. Purpose is something we must make for ourselves, meaning something that each one of us must imbue our life with personally. The purposes and meanings you have chosen to espouse tell the rest of us an awful lot about what a pathetic failure of a human being you truly are.

  78. Keep it in perspective; only folk commenting here and a few other places will be interested in what the former Pakistani, Nazir-Ali, is spouting. The majority of British people are just not interested what the likes of Ian Paisley, Cormac Murphy O’Connor, Vincent Nichols, Rowan Williams, or indeed Michael Nazir-Ali have to say on any subject, let alone homosexuality. They’re all pulpit pooves as far as they’re concerned.

    Of all the religious high priestesses, I believe Cormac Murphy O’Connor, the former Archbishop of Westminster, may have got it right when he described religion in contemporary Britain as “a private eccentricity”.

    All the best.

  79. # 74
    Brian.
    Ooh! You can be scathing when you want!
    That poor David!
    What has he done to YOU..!

    Know what comes to my mind.?
    I think these high flying clerics have painted themselves into a corner.
    This one certainly has.
    And so has Ratzinger.

    And you have to be sorry for them as humming beans I have to admit, sadly.
    They are only men and, despite their high office, are only parish priests albeit with knobs on, when all is said and done.
    They have looked into themselves at some point and found that what they see to be in themselves, they are obliged to preach against and have been preaching against all their careers.
    But consider.
    Where are they to go, approaching, or already in, middle or old age..?
    Go on pension credit and benefits..?

    They HAVE to continue to walk the walk and talk the talk; hence the ferocity of their pronouncements as if they were willing themselves into believing the crud they foist on everybody else.
    That is why in an earlier article, I urged Mr. Scott Rennie to dump the lot and run; go drive a bus in peace.
    I could give name, rank and serial number of at least 7 Catholic parish priests who are in that position now; too old; too far ‘in’ the bunkum up to their necks and too damned scared to do anything about the horrendous, lonely pickle they find themselves in.
    All very quietly of course.
    Come Sunday, the mask comes out of the vestments’ drawer and ‘Vesti la Giubba, Ridi Pagliacchio… on with the Motley..
    (Beniamino Gigli does it for me but Pavarotti is ok too, if a tad ‘shouty’.)
    But in the privacy and solitude of the presbytery bedroom, year in, year out, when the public has gone home, on yet another Sunday?
    Tears in buckets.
    Very sad.
    I could tell you about a prince of the Church, young guys one after the other, a cardinal, but that is for another day.

    The man in the get-up is often very different to the public persona he is obliged to portray.
    Only one man dumped and ran, in modern times that I can recall; and did it with aplomb.
    And that was the Catholic Archbishop of Argylle and the Isles, Roddy Wright.

    He ran off to N.Z. with a divorcee but sadly didn’t last long in his new found life, dying of cancer rather too soon, thereafter.

    Keith

    Keith.

  80. #71:

    At last, you’ve got my attention for a minute, hon. Enjoy it while it lasts ’cause I ain’t about to waste time talking to your fosilized brain cells, and I mean that in the most charitable way, of course, just like the oracle of Rod-chester here.

    I do love a cultured gentleman. Have you ever met one?

    Ever hear ‘a Samuel Butler? No, that was Rett Butler. Samuel used to love to fool around and poke fun at things, a bit like you. A quote? Why, I dunno, I think I’m all outta quotes, and I wouldn’t want to bore people with my notorious pedantry…but OK, just a little:

    “An apology for the devil: it must be remembered that we have heard only one side of the case; God has written all the books.”
    -Samuel Butler (1835-1902)

    Enjoy the beach, and remember to be water wise. We wouldn’t want you to get caught in a rip tide, now would we. Would We ???!

  81. david skinner 5 Jul 2009, 11:02pm

    Brian and Vincent, I thought the so – called gays stood for “equality, tolerance, diversity and inclusion” and above all “kindness and love“. Thanks Brian and Vincent for finally dispelling any remaining illusion that Gaydar, Boy George and its political wing, Stonewall, stand for nothing but bigotry, intolerance, fascism and a death wish. It’s all here, on this thread, for all to see.

    The so- called homoexual, Johann Hari, reporting for the Independent newspaper pointed out in a recent article for the Huffington Post that, despite their official condemnation of sodomy, the leadership of European fascist movements is dominated by homosexuals.

    “The twisted truth is that gay men have been at the heart of every major fascist movement that ever was – including the gay-gassing, homo-cidal Third Reich. With the exception of Jean-Marie Le Pen, all the most high-profile fascists in Europe in the past thirty years have been gay.”

    And as Thomas (26) rightly pointed out, the black community are not forever going to take kindly to being identified with gays, penguins and Boy George. As for the Muslims they are biding their time, waiting for the “homosexuals” to deconstruct British society and then they will make their move. They might be able to kill homosexuals only once but it is their manner of doing it that should worry you. But somehow I don’t think you care – at least it would make life that little more interesting.

  82. David Skinner . . . I thought you Christians believed in practicing the following:

    * Love
    * Tolerance
    * Acceptance

    Little evidence of the above in Bishop Nazir recent “Christian” pronouncement?

  83. What are Muslims infiltrating the Church of England? Nazar-Ali????? Less money on the collection plate for you Mister!!!!!!!!

  84. Apprentice Messiah 6 Jul 2009, 3:35am

    Tell his Bishoprick to stick to what they know best. Realstate. I wouldn’t kiss his ring.

  85. Apprentice Messiah 6 Jul 2009, 3:38am

    Correction. I wouldn’t kiss his ring. Tell his Bishoprick to stick to what they know best, Real Estate.

  86. Vincent Poffley 6 Jul 2009, 4:04am

    You know, I read through that last david skinner rant and, despite trying really, really hard, I could not find anything remotely sensible in there at all. It’s just random odious garbage piled one word on top of another. I didn’t think the English language was capable of supporting such inanity – you do indeed learn something new every day. One must extend sympathy towards such people of course – it’s probably not his fault that he is such a poorly educated, ill-informed, mentally unstable bigot. After all, who would actually choose such an existence for themself given any other options – who would choose to be an internet troll so uncontrollable in his bilious spewings that he is quite incapable of making sense however hard he tries? No wonder he can only find a welcoming place among credulous religious people who have been trained since birth to staunchly ignore any evidence placed in front of them. It’s almost sad really…

  87. Eating shrimp is a sin according to Leviticus as is sleeping with your wife while she is on her period.

    I hope Bishop Nazi and David Skinner have repented and turned away from these activities!

  88. John M.J. 6 Jul 2009, 6:54am

    Mr. Skinner is, of course, a fundamentalist, a textual literalist with very little understanding of the science of Biblical recension and no understanding at all of the implications of believing in the ministry of Christ. His limited understanding of the message of God – love and tolerance for all – as preached by the Christ and as moved by the Spirit today, is based solely in his belief that the Bible which he reads and has in his possession must be literally true and that he must interpret that Bible based upon his limited understanding of its translation into the version of English which he can read. He has absolutely no understanding of the complexities involved in translating ancient texts into modern languages and has no ability to read, or interest in reading and understanding, the Biblical texts, and the other sources of Christian knowledge, in their original forms.

    If he had such knowledge and such interests then he would know that the Bible does not prohibit homosexuality – may I repeat that – the Bible does not prohibit homosexuality. The prohibitions, if such prohibitions can be said to exist in the original texts (an assertion which is dubious at best) about homosexuality are severely limited. Firstly, they are addressed only to Israel, not to other nations. Secondly, compliance with them is merely a condition for residing in the Holy Land, but is irrelevant outside it (see the closing exhortation, Lev. 18:24-30). Thirdly, they are limited to men; lesbianism is not prohibited at all (ancient patriarchal attitudes rear their ugly heads again, it seems!). Therefore, it is incorrect to apply this prohibition on a universal scale.

    Moreover, the occurrences of the prohibition (Lev. 18:22; 20:13) contain the phrase “as one lies with a woman” (literally: “lieings of, or with, a woman”), an idiom used only for illicit unions. Carnal relations are forbidden only if their correlated heterosexual unions would be in these lists. For example, the Bible lists the following prohibited relations: nephew-aunt, grandfather-granddaughter, and stepmother- stepson. Therefore, nephew-uncle, grand father-grandson, and stepfather-stepson are also forbidden. This implies that the so-called and non-existent homosexual prohibition does not cover all male-male liaisons, but only those within the limited circle of familial and consanguineous relationships. However, homosexual relations with unrelated males are neither prohibited nor penalised. There are more than two occurrences of the phrase, in its original meaning, “as one lies with a woman” (49:4; 20:13).

    The prohibition, if it exists at all, is severely limited. Firstly, it is addressed only to Israel, not to the other nations. Secondly, compliance with this law is a condition for residing in the Holy Land, but it is irrelevant outside it (see the closing exhortation, Leviticus, 18:24-30). Thirdly, it is limited to men; lesbianism is not prohibited. Thus it is incorrect to apply this prohibition on a universal scale.

    Both occurrences of the prohibition (18:22; 20:13) contain the phrase “as one lies with a woman” (literally: “lieings, with or of, a woman”), is an idiom used only for illicit sexual unions. Carnal homosexual relations of all sorts are forbidden only if their correlated heterosexual unions would be in the same listsm as forbidden heterosexual relationships. For example, the Bible lists the following prohibited relations: nephew-aunt, grandfather-granddaughter, and stepmother- stepson. Thus, nephew-uncle, grand father-grandson, and stepfather-stepson are also forbidden. This implies that the homosexual prohibition does not cover all male-male liaisons, but only those within the limited circle of famililial and consanguineous relationships – exactly as carnal relationships are prohibited for heterosexuals. However, homosexual relations with unrelated males are neither prohibited nor penalised. There are two occurrences of the phrase “as one lies with a woman” (49:4; 20:13) which seem to to agree that this argument is definitive. The Bible does not prohibit homosexuality.

    While the Bible never applauds homosexuality, or, indeed, any other form of sexuality, neither does it prohibit most people from engaging in it.

    You see, one has to understand, as Mr. Skinner most obviously does not, the ancient language in which the Old Testament – a fulfilled and irrelevant work – was written and one has to understand the idioms and the mores of the day and age in which it was written before one can begin to understand what the texts mean. It’s no good at all to simply look at some translation or other into modern English and argue, as Mr. Skinner does, that it makes sense only if you see it his way. That is a complete nonsense – worse, it’s vicious and evil nonsense perpetrated by a deeply duplicitous and uneducated man interested only in causing the maximum of mental damage to those who don’t view the world in the same limited and erroneous way that he does.

    His complete lack of any education whatsoever about the faith shines through in every word that he writes here. Seldom have I seen a man more certain in his ignorance nor a man more deliberatelly and wilfully ignorant about Christianity than Mr. Skinner.

    Mr. Skinner, is quite simply, an under-educated, ill-informed, Biblical literalist without the intellectual forensic attainments to analyse the Holy Text and without any compassion, love of or understanding of Christ’s words, or of the meaning of His life and His death, and he lacks any rigorous understanding of the science of Biblical recension (or any understanding or knowledge of the science of Biblical Archaeology).

  89. Mihangel apYrs 6 Jul 2009, 6:56am

    @Dave (77)

    the only problem is that these people:
    a) have privileged access to politicians
    b) in some cases are actually members of the HoL – ie they can vote on our rights

  90. Mihangel apYrs 6 Jul 2009, 7:03am

    DAvid Skinner: being gay means that one is sexually and EMOTIONALLY attracted to people of the same sex. You may wish to reflect that lesbians (the chosen term for gay women) also exist.

    My tolerance extends only as far as the point where you adversly affect me or mine, at which point I would crush you. What that means is that I don’t care what you do as long as it doesn’t impinge on my life: so I don’t mind you marching up and down at Pride screaming your god-bothering quotes, I do mind if yiou say I ought to be treated, or that I shouldn’t be allowed to marry.

  91. Brian Burton 6 Jul 2009, 7:53am

    Mihangel ap Yps,
    David Skinner IS QUEER, and whats more, he addmitted it to me in one of his silly Queeny moments. Skinner is the ‘Great Pretender’ I’m afraid. This is why the poor sod should be in deep theripy. Really, every one on Pink News should ignore him.

  92. What a thrilling and life-affirming thread this has been – or is! Such articulate and powerful comments from so many people! (Of course, I exclude from such praise the inanity of the sad troll “David Skinner” – seriously mentally unwell, and not to be answered.)

  93. “The twisted truth is that gay men have been at the heart of every major fascist movement that ever was – including the gay-gassing, homo-cidal Third Reich. With the exception of Jean-Marie Le Pen, all the most high-profile fascists in Europe in the past thirty years have been gay.”(words of David Skinner)

    Adolph Hitler – only known relationships where with his niece (who he is thought to of driven to suicide)and Eva Brown (who he Married in the last hours of his life). But we also know Hitler was into S&M and being pooped and pissed on by women.

    Hermann Göring – Married twice

    Joseph Goebbels – killed his six children by injecting them with morphine and then, when they were unconscious, crushing an ampule of cyanide in each of their mouths. Shortly afterwards, Goebbels and his wife went up to the garden of the Chancellery, where they killed themselves.

    Heinrich Himmler – Married and also directly responsible for the murder of 6 million people including hundreds of thousands homosexuals.

    The fact that your trying to link homosexuality to the very people that slaughtered them is despicable David Skinner. You are right up their with Alan Irvine now as that’s his tactic in holocaust denial blame the victim and turn the truth around so the victim is the fascist.

    Your a sick in the head David Skinner get help.

  94. Brian Burton 6 Jul 2009, 9:20am

    Keith,
    I salute your wonderful epistles (they are you know!) to this thread, which is giving me mosaic eyeballs, reading all the 90 odd comments.

  95. Excellent letter to Nazir-Ali Richard. Well done!

  96. Bentham, you will find the following article in today’s ‘Daily Telegraph’:
    Queen sends ‘supportive’ letters to leaders of church movement that has angered gay campaigners

  97. Vo DongCung 6 Jul 2009, 9:25am

    I don’t think Michael Nazir-Ali is a bishop, beside the bible that most 6 out of seven people did not trust, he don’t know anything else to say. Are bishops’ mind so narrow like that?

  98. David Skinner and Nazir-Ali:

    I’m sending you both a big, fat, dusty, smelly, 1800s copy of Charles Darwin’s Theory Of Evolution.

    I’m also going to send you both a DVD of Jurassic Park, so you both can finally familiarise yourselves with these little things called di-no-saurs. Big lizards from millions of years ago basically. You see, their mere existance proves your version of events (as stated in the Bible) is incorrect. You see the Bible doesn’t say, doesn’t even mention or state that dinosaurs existed millions of years before man. The Land Before Time is another fantastic dinosaur film, although it’s slightly sad aswell.

    You will then be able to educate yourselves in scientific fact rather than stories invented by men (we know they’re invented by MEN because every Abrahamic religion is anit-women).

    P.S The way the church and indeed Christianity has treated women over the years is disgraceful, and one of the best passages and characters to come out of the Bible was Lilith -Adam’s first wife before Eve:

    ‘After God created Adam, who was alone, He said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone.’ He then created a woman for Adam, from the earth, as He had created Adam himself, and called her Lilith. Adam and Lilith immediately began to fight. She said, ‘I will not lie below,’ and he said, ‘I will not lie beneath you, but only on top. For you are fit only to be in the bottom position, while I am to be the superior one.’ Lilith responded, ‘We are equal to each other inasmuch as we were both created from the earth.’ But they would not listen to one another. When Lilith saw this, she pronounced the Ineffable Name and flew away into the air.’

    Genesis 2:18

  99. I feel compelled to share the following priceless offfering from a certain Algernon Fothering in the Daily Telegraph readers comments section today:

    “May I express profound support for the Bishop’s remarks? I too was gay but successfully cured myself of bottomistical practices by cutting off my penis and testicles with a rusty blade. I then carved a cross onto my stomach and head-butted a large rock until I slipped into a coma. I have never felt homosexual desire – or indeed any desire – from that day. May I commend this effective solution which has done so much to me. In Jesus’ blessed mercy and love – amen.”

    Mr Fothering, respect.

  100. Excellent and informative post, #87/John MJ.

    “David Skinner” has such a tiny brain he will not be able to come up with a constructive arguement against it.

    He is obviously someone with homosexual desires who is trying to repress them, is full of self-hatred and has turned to religion (aka fairy tales) as his “only hope” to change, how pitiful. Because he’s so inadequate and unable to deal with his sexuality he is jealous and hating of the rest of us because we can, so tries to attack us with TRANSLATIONS OF TRANSLATIONS OF TRANSLATIONS of a pile of old ancient texts for which there is no proof and actually has evidence showing some of it is false.

    Life is short and you only have one, how sad david skinner has chosen to spend his fighting his urges, living a lie and being what he’s not and devoting his life to a work of fiction…lol.

    P.S. Skinner, re your mention of Islam, if you’re so homophobic and against people why are you fearful of it? As you said they are tougher on homosexuality than Christianity maybe that’s your fear, in case they find out your little sexuality secret…hehe!

  101. Nigel Holland-Williams 6 Jul 2009, 2:37pm

    I just phoned the chaplain only to have the call terminated by him. When i phoned back the call was cut off yet again!

    I am a gay Christian and am deeply ashamed by the idiotic wankers homophobic comments.

  102. Nazi-Rali is an ignorant prejudices homophobe and no better than a racist- as an Asian man he should know better and he is mired in sins from hypocrisy to downright nastiness.

    The scandal here is not that there ae nasty people who say nasty things but that such a sorry excuse for a human being should be given such a position of power, influence and authority.

    He is undoubtedly alienating a great many Christains from the church, so every cloud has a silver lining. I wish he could be prosecuted for hate speech and lose his job- that would be justice.

  103. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 3:11pm

    We need a church that supports the spiritual needs of all sections of the community. We need a church which recognises its flaws and constantly seeks to evolve to meet the spiritual needs of the whole community it serves. We need a church that respects and values different perspectives and is not afraid of dialogue. We need a church that is not afraid to adapt, improve, change in order to meet the spiritual needs of the nation and the community it serves. Could this be proof positive that the C of E is not that organisation.

  104. My take on Nazi-Rali is that it’s just another case of someone of obvious foreign origin trying to Anglicise himself as much as possible and trying to smarm up to the Tory-dominated establishment. I mean, just look at those whiskers! Who does he think he is? The Earl of Rochester?

  105. Brian Burton 6 Jul 2009, 3:27pm

    Ivan,
    That Telegraph Letter was Skinner without a doubt. Skinner is more to be pitied than blamed, because of his mental illness.

  106. #92
    Brian…!
    Too kind but salute the right quarter…
    It is not me who is writing the guff I type at the keyboard.
    The actual sentiments come from a very deep anger at organised religion which has been on the back burner for 50 years, simmering gently.
    AND NOW IN CLOSING MAY I SUGGEST THAT NO-ONE FORGETS THIS LITTLE SPAT WITH HIS GRACE, THE BISHOP OF ROCHESTER AND THAT THE NECESSARY PLANNING APPLICATIONS ARE SET IN PLACE AS EXPEDIENTLY AS POSS., SO THAT THE 2010 PRIDE-FEST CAN BE HELD IN THE FAIR CITY OF R.O.C.H.E.S.T.E.R……?
    That WOULD be a wheeze…!

    Keith.
    SALFORD.

  107. I disagree with the Bishop’s comments but as usual the comments on here are anough to make me glad I’m not an atheist.
    Take for example…
    “How would he feel if a prominent public figure said MUSLIMS needed to repent and be CHANGED?”

    Yes… that’s right. The Bishop has brown skin so must be a Muslim. Never mind he has been openly critical of Islam and is a Christian Bishop. Brownie = Muslim… Honestly… the racists on this board…

    And of course we have the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association chiming in. Never miss an oppertunity to evangelise for atheism… homophobia? hooray! another chance to preach the anti-gospel message.

    Atheists don’t get it do you? Myself and other LGBT Christians aren’t interested in taking lessons on our faith from you. We’ve read your books, we see the way you lie about what we believe, what we practise and and the pathetic attempts to smear faith. We are as fed up with the anti-faith bigotry from you as we are the bigotry from other areas.

    At the end of the day I’m part of a movement that believes in 2 commandments above all else, to love God and to love your neighbour as much as you love yourself. That means I have to take action on bigotry and injustice, defend peoples rights whatever their faith and take action on issues like hunger and homelessness. We may not get much publicity for it but Christians have done this through our history and may long it continue! (I know… at this point you’ll lie and say it hasn’t, lie and say medieval hospitals didn’t exist, etc.)

    I know some atheists have these priorities as well (but not most) and I’m glad of them but it’s not a central part of atheism like it is in Christianity. Sure we get it wrong occasionaly (cue lies from the atheists making us out to be the most evil thing ever!) but it’s still there. It’s a lot better than the secular neo-liberalism we’ve had the past thirty years!

  108. “Atheists don’t get it do you? Myself and other LGBT Christians aren’t interested in taking lessons on our faith from you. We’ve read your books, we see the way you lie about what we believe, what we practise and and the pathetic attempts to smear faith. We are as fed up with the anti-faith bigotry from you as we are the bigotry from other areas.” – John #106

    You forget that the only reason this bigoted bishop and other religious people are being attacked on this site is when they make such hurtful, homophobic, backward comments as this. I have every respect for someone’s right to practice whatever religion they want, whether it’s worshiping God, Allah, Buddah or the Tooth Fairy, but they lose that right to respect and tolerance when they try to influence how other people (who are not hurting anyone) live their lives. If they stopped interfering in the lives of gay people by making such bigoted and backward comments, and re-inforcing homophobia, then I’m sure you wouldn’t get many people here “bashing” them.

    I appreciate as a religious person you have every right to criticise the anti-religion posts here, but I also wonder if as a gay person you will also criticise the anti-gay comments made by members of your religion?

  109. Neville (94):

    Good man. In their article, Martin Beckford (any relation to 18th century Beckford’s, notablt one William?) and Jonathan Wynne-Jones conclude:

    “Royal sources said the Queen was not endorsing the FCA and pointed out that she corresponds with a great number of organisations.”

    I thought that was fair.

    I’d like to share this poem with you:

    I Am Not A Man – by Harold Norse

    I am not a man. I can’t earn a living, buy new things for my family. I have acne and a small peter

    I am not a man. I don’t like football, boxing and cars. I like to express my feelings. I even like to put my arm around my friend’s shoulder.

    I am not a man. I won’t play the role assigned to me – the role created by Madison Avenue, Playboy, Hollywood and Oliver Cromwell. Television does not dictate my behavior.

    I am not a man. Once when I shot a squirrel I swore that I would never kill again. I gave up meat. The sight of blood makes me sick. I like flowers.

    I am not a man. I went to prison for resisting the draft. I do not fight when real men beat me up and call me queer. I dislike violence

    I am not a man. I have never raped a woman. I don’t hate blacks. I don’t get emotional when the flag is waved. I do not think I should love America or leave it. I think I should laugh at it.

    I am not a man. I have never had the clap.

    I am not a man. Playboy is not my favorite magazine.

    I am not a man. I cry when I’m unhappy.

    I am not a man. I do not feel superior to women.

    I am not a man. I don’t wear a jockstrap.

    I am not a man. I write poetry.

    I am not a man. I meditate on Peace and Love.

    I am not a man. I don’t want to destroy you.

    ******************************************

    Harold Norse was born on this day, 1904; d. 2009.

    P.S.: Do you know if the Queen corresponds with gay organisations? Just wondering. I rather like the Queen, as a person, I mean.

  110. Lezabella 6 Jul 2009, 4:28pm

    “We’ve read your books, we see the way you lie about what we believe, what we practise and and the pathetic attempts to smear faith.”

    We see how you lie about how the earth came into being.

    We see how you conveniently and blindly ignore the works of Charles Darwin.

    We see how you ignore fossils that are millions and millions of years old.

    We see how you believe that a man named Jesus Christ, who had the title of ‘divine’ bestowed on him in a politically motivated move by Constantine at the Council Of Nicea, was the ‘Son of God’ .

    We see that no religious law is more outrageous and cruel than the Judaic, barbarous Exodus 22:18 law used by the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy for centuries, to torture cruelly and murder unknown MILLIONS of women for being ‘witches’ (i.e pagans, nature lovers, women who refused to conform, spinsters, lesbians).

    We see how YOUR religion and every other religion has brought chaos, destruction and pain to the world………………and for what?????

    -Because you’re afraid of death and you’re afraid of thinking for yourselves; when you’re a member of a religion, every life-changing choice has already been made for you.

    So please, do not patronise or attack atheists when their only crime on here is to defend themselves against religious zealots who preach ‘hell’ at us 24/7.

  111. Simon Murphy 6 Jul 2009, 4:38pm

    #106: John: You says:

    Atheists don’t get it do they? Myself and other LGBT Christians aren’t interested in taking lessons on our faith from you. We’ve read your books, we see the way you lie about what we believe, what we practise and and the pathetic attempts to smear faith. We are as fed up with the anti-faith bigotry from you as we are the bigotry from other areas.”

    People have been criticising Nazi-Rali for his hatemongering and homophobia. The attacks on that nasty homophobe are entirely provoked. You can see that can’t you?

    To paraphrase your own comments:

    Myself and other LGBT atheists aren’t interested in taking lessons on our morality from you. We’ve read your books, we see the way you lie about what we believe, what we practise and and the pathetic attempts to smear atheism. We are as fed up with the religious bigotry from you as we are the bigotry from other areas.

    Some religious bastard called Nazi-Rali engages in blatant homophobia and his supporters get all hurt because he is called on it.

  112. i don’t see why any gay or lesbian would even want to be associated with any religion…..religion has been used in the past to withold rights from black people and women…oh, and it set back attempts to stop slavery as well….now its gays and lesbians as i’m not sure what other targets they would have after us? the disabled maybe? or maybe they’ll go really traditionalist old testament…i’m sure they could find a whole bunch of out of date verses to use in their hate filled tirades….religious leaders are like kids in a sweet shop drooling over which set of people they can condemn next…and then selecting the appropriate texts to use in their attacks

  113. Lezabella (109):

    Sharp. Constantine. Nice touch. You go, girl ! ! !

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Eddy is right; this entire thread is an education. Let’s call it the Earl of Rochester Day ! ! !

  114. To John in #106 – you take on the Bishop and the creeping fundamentalism and bigotry that’s taking over your own church, then we’ll take your whining complaints about Christian persecution remotely seriously.

    If your holy texts are important to you, fine, whatever floats your boat. But the bishop’s bigoted remarks are entirely inspired from the religious texts that you treat as sacred. They cause an awful lot of misery and harm. Face the consequences and you will have to expect people saying how much they loathe your religion.

    What we don’t like is the way a cleric – who has no claim to be a better moral guide than anyone else – with such insane views as Nazir-Ali, can get headline coverage, and have unfairly high levels of influence.

    Church congregations are dying out – now, less than 7% go to church weekly. Nazir-Ali’s comments remind us we need to disestablish the church, kick the whole lot of the Bishops out of the Lords, rag, tag and bobtail.

    The question needs to be asked: would Nazir-Ali be equally happy to tell muslims, jews and hindus to repent? if not, why not – is it because gay peopel just tend to write angry letters to newspapers, while fanatical muslim protesters might demand the bishop’s head? You either believe ‘nobody comes by the father but by me’, or you don’t. Over to you, Nazir-Ali – claim it for one, claim it for them all. Let’s see just what a Crusader you are.

  115. John, Comment 108: you assume that the poster whom you quote as saying “How would he feel if a prominent public figure said MUSLIMS needed to repent and be CHANGED?” believes that “The Bishop has brown skin so must be a Muslim”.

    No, sorry. Flaw in your logic there. That doesn’t follow, necessarily. The power in the poster’s comment is that Mr. Nazir Ali being of a particular ethnic minority must, and no doubt does, feel empathy with ethnic minorities in the UK and therefore he would react strongly to the idea of people, let’s say from the the Indian Subcontinent, having to alter their fundamental characteristics because of their being members of an ethnic minority.

    It was a good point. You assume racism. You need to broaden your thinking.

    Hmmm. But you admit to being a Christian person . . . so therefore, naturally, you thinking is extremely narrow. You believe in ghosts, spirits, sprites, elves, pixies, and fairies. Very limited. Very silly.

  116. Lezabella! You are impressive! (Well, I’m saying this because, possibly wrongly, I am under the impression you are relatively new here, and I want to welcome you!) So many comments in this thread are impressive though. What a fine bunch. We ought to have a real-time get-together!

  117. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 6:00pm

    Popped back in to see how the dialogue is going. Some interesting points expressed. Though I myself am not atheist I do not consider their perspective any less enlightened than my spiritual perspective. I am aware that many atheist voices echo my own views about the inconsistencies and damage that religion creates. I think it is a good thing that they seem to be, though maybe not consciously, giving momentum to the spiritual evolution of humanity by highlighting the flaws of certain religious ideas which do not work to create peace and harmony in the world. Here here I say to the likes of Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, et al. Religion needs to change its attitude, it needs to let go of outmoded concepts, it needs to wake up. I said earlier that we need a church that supports, embraces, enlarges and fulfils the spiritual needs of every member of the commuinity and nation it serves. Clearly the CofE is not doing that and is in drastic need of dragging kicking and screaming into the 21st century. As an organisation charged with the task of bringing people closer to each other and closer to God it fails utterly. Unless it can change then time to go. Id like to finish here by quoting a response given by Neale Donald Walsch, the author of the Conversations With God dialogue books, to some letters asking about homosexuality and religion. For me this pretty much hits the ball for six on this issue.
    “…An argument can be made that the Bible does not condemn homosexuality. An equally strong argument can be made that it does. Whether it does or it does not is beside the point. But if it does, it does so for the same reason that all condemnation exists: fear. What we fear, we condemn. What we love, we praise. Only those who fear homosexuality condemn it. Since God fears nothing, God does not condemn it, nor anything else….there is no form in which the expression of a love which is honest and pure is inappropriate.” Questions & Answers On Conversations With God By Neale Donald Walsch, pg 154.
    I think I shall leave it there at this point. I shall return to see how the debate is going later. Also for anyone who’s on facebook who’s contributed comments here you may like to join the group Christians For Marriage Equality. Im not a christian but I do support the aims and values this group espouses. Tata for now xxx.

  118. What has become obvious from some of the diatribes posted here is that religious faith is a mental illness

  119. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 8:03pm

    I wouldnt go so far as to dismiss the whole spectrum of the spiritual aspect of the human experience as a mental illness because of the misguided views of one man but I understand where your coming from. xxx

  120. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 8:20pm

    maybe your not doing that. I think we can both agree that religion creates a great deal of suffering and fails utterly to achieve its central objectives because it actually teaches concepts and ideas that lead people away from the highest and most sacred experiences of which humanity is capable. It creates circumstances and conditions that divide and seperate people from each other and that exclude people from connecting with and experiencing the divine and the spiritual dimension of human experience. Why the very organisations that are set up to help us achieve these things continue to do the polar opposite remains a mystery to me.

  121. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 8:21pm

    I suppose that does seem a bit mental

  122. Vincent Poffley 6 Jul 2009, 9:00pm

    “I wouldnt go so far as to dismiss the whole spectrum of the spiritual aspect of the human experience as a mental illness”

    Not a mental illness perhaps, but certainly a mental phenomenon. When you say “spiritual” what you in fact mean is “psychological”, i.e. a product of the normal functioning of the synaptic activity in the human brain. There is no evidence whatsoever that might lead us to conclude there is anything else going on.

    As for the whinings of the religious people, we in the reality-based community will start taking you seriously on matters of metaphysics and ethics when you can provide any evidence at all that your magic friends in the sky actually exist. Vague woolly feelings of niceness do not count as evidence. Until such evidence is forthcoming nobody has even the slightest reason to treat your delusions with anything but derision. Keep being good people by all means, or aspire to goodness if you do not already, but know full well that you are doing good because of who you are and how you respond to the plight of other human beings, not because there is any spooky metaphysical compulsion for you to be so.

  123. Vincent Poffley 6 Jul 2009, 9:28pm

    Oh, and it would be remiss of me as a doctoral student of medieval history to let the ill-informed comment about medieval hospitals go without comment. Yes, many medieval religious orders (both christian and muslim) founded institutions called “hospitals”, but medical care and the provision of alms to the poor was not the original function of such institutions. Often they were simply travellers’ inns or meeting places (where hospitality was offered, hence the name). Many did eventually provide medical services and alms, but often only to members of their founding order or local people. One of the main functions of such places was the ostentatious display of patronage and wealth. Obviously, like all institutions in medieval europe, the vocabulary of christianity was everywhere, but it was not christianity that made people considerate or concerned for the suffering of others. Compassion, mutual altruism and fellow-feeling are human universals, indeed, they are instinctive traits which we share with many other mammals. The christian middle ages saw charitable giving as a form of personal benefit, and a way for wealthy nobles to show largesse and consolidate their positions in society. Also, the middle ages saw the development of a cult of poverty which lauded and valued suffering in the service of ineffable religious goals. This cult is still with us in much catholic missionary work – mother Theresa was a case in point: not a friend to the poor but a friend to poverty who campaigned strongly against abortion, women’s education and attempts to reform the welfare system in India. Ad-hoc charitable giving is no way to help the poor, and it has only been comparatively recently, since the religious mentality has been abandoned, that proper welfare states have emerged and consistent, effective, secular methods of genuinely helping those in poverty have arisen.

    Religion has no contribution to make to ethical thinking – it is purely a cultural anachronism. If something is morally valid or ethically sound then it can stand up to reasoned scrutiny without the scaffolding of metaphysical nonsense that religion provides.

  124. Rick George (120):

    It wouldn’t surprise me if Neville were perfectly aware of the distinction between religion and spirituality.

    Frankly, I can appreciate what you’re saying. One of my very favourite sites is gaywidom dot org after all.

    Vincent:

    Spiritual, psychological… it’s more a question of self-discovery, isn’t it?

    I mean, whenever we make an effort to identify ourselves as gay, to understand how we are different and quite talented, to shape our own purpose in life and to act for the betterment of humanity…isn’t that kind of a spiritual journey?

  125. The only spirit I’ve ever shown a commitment to comes out of a bottle.

  126. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 11:03pm

    Ummm well maybe if you accept the Newtonion nuts and bolts model of reality perhaps but even science is starting to move in other directions now. I think there is plenty of evidence for the spiritual aspect of the human experience if you have an open mind and look for it. Remain open to the possibilities but also dont get attached to one particular paradigm or understanding. All great discoveries and advances are made from a willingness to consider the possibility that what if everything you think is right is actually wrong. Todays impossible maybe the taken for granted technology of the future and may be indiscernable from magic, as the saying goes. We can all learn something about ourselves and life from all fields of human endeavour and understanding. Consider different perspectives, really take time to explore them and think about them. You dont have to agree with everything but engaing in the process can lead to greater understanding of yourself and others, to an enlarging and expansion of your awareness. Dont agree with anything I say and dont believe anything I say until you’ve tried and tested it and found that it works in your own experience. If you find that it doesnt work then dont use it. I think Buddha expressed sentiments along those lines. If its evidence with a more scientific dimension for the spiritual aspect of the human experience your after please examine the following material.

    The film What The Bleep Do We Know & the books which examine in more detail the ideas discussed and explored in the film. These include:

    Beyond The Bleep by Alexandra Bruce
    &
    What The Bleep Do We Know – Discovering The Endless Possibilities For Altering Your Everyday Reality by William Arntz, Betsy Chasse and Mark Vicente.

    The Field by Lynne Mctaggart.

    Science And The Akashic Field by Ervin Laszlo

    Science and the Reenchantment of the Cosmos by Ervin Laszlo

    Cosmos – A Co-creators Guide To The Whole World by Ervin Laszlo & Jude Currivan

    The Divine Matrix: Bridging Time, Space, Miracles, and Belief by Gregg Braden.

    The God Code by Gregg Braden.

    Cosmic Consciousness by Richard Maurice Bucke, MD
    and Cosmic Consciousness Revisited by Robert M. May

    The Quantum Self by Danah Zohar

    God’s Whisper, Creations Thunder – Echose of Ultimate Reality In the New Physics by Brian Hines.

    It may not be the ultimate double blind lab test, but you’ll find plenty of food for thought. For myself I dont ascribe to the externalised model of God you describe (“magic friends in the sky”) who seems to have more in common with an egotistical, tyrannical monarch according to the most powerful religions. Nope thats not what god is. For those of us who dont go to churches that teach seperation theology and exclusivist philosophy, who are open to different perspectives, and who aspire to spiritual principles and values which do not include judgement and condemnation the concept of a punitive tribal deity is a nonsense.

  127. Rick George 6 Jul 2009, 11:08pm

    above is my reply to Vincent Poffley at 123. others replied while is was in midflow

  128. david skinner 6 Jul 2009, 11:49pm

    Ni Abi1975 at (93) those were the words of the homosexual Johan Harri, in the Huffington Post, October 21, 200, I didn’t say it ; he did. Check it out for yourself

  129. Rick – it’s fine to say that future technologies will appear like magic – indeed, if we went back in time now, we would seem like gods to the ancient Greeks.

    But when we step into a transatlantic jet airliner – we are not using blind faith (ok, airbus excepted). We get from A to B according to testable scientific laws. Aeroplanes and spaceships fly, magic carpets and broomsticks don’t.

    When you say, ‘I think there is plenty of evidence for the spiritual aspect of the human experience if you have an open mind and look for it.’
    - Well, OK, we are all capable of contemplation. It’s super, it’s natural – just don’t label it ‘supernatural’. The human brain evolved to find answers, when there are none. We are the only species to understand death. Open mindedness is excellent – it’s what has helped replace one supernatural explanation after the next, from Copernicus onwards. And civilisation is all the better for it.

  130. now that you’re here, I can leave.

    Cheeres RobN ! ! !

  131. TomPaine:

    Our posts crossed. I was taliking to #130, what’s-his-name, not you. It’s always a pleasure to see you on a thread !

  132. john sharp 7 Jul 2009, 3:59am

    religious people should repent and reject all the religious lies
    we are naturally born GAY leabian BI Trans
    religions is indoctrination
    lies and deceit .
    religious advocates should be jailed for those crimes

  133. Brian Burton 7 Jul 2009, 7:40am

    Night and day, you are the one. Only you beneath the moon and under the sum. Wheather nere to you or far, it’s nomatter darling where you are. I think of you. Night and day, day and night…. SORRY…I fell into my Fred Astair mode for a moment. I better skip back down the yellow brick road with Dorothy!

  134. REPENT AND GIVE UP YOUR LIVES OF PERVERTED FILTH!!!! (Whoops, so sorry! Must have taken a Bigoty pill instead of my gay ones(!)If we must have clergy, lets have the admirable and really on side Archbishop Tutu and not this nutty twit who obviously needs a lobotomy!

  135. Lezabella 7 Jul 2009, 9:20am

    Thankyou Bentham and Eddy, I do my best!

    (and yes I am relitavely new Eddy, but I feel as though I’m into the swing of things now. Plus there’s not many lesbians representing the ‘L’ in the LGBT on here, except for Iris and she rocks! :) )

  136. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 10:42am

    Responding to Tom Paine, comment 130: I didnt use the word supernatural in the sentiments I expressed. And you dont have to remind me about testable scientific laws because Im not a religious fundamentalist. I utilised part of the Arthur C Clarke quote, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”, in the context of urging people to keep an open mind about the whole idea of possibility. If you read some of the work of the japanese physicist Michio Kaku you’ll understand where I’m coming from. I think I see where your going in what you say, and perhaps Im wrong in my interpretation of what your saying, but Im not sure I can follow you all the way down that road. Materialism and reductionism or a Newtonion nuts and bolts model of how things are, for me thats not the whole picture and even science now sees the flaws in this model. I dont have blind faith because I remain open to different perspectives and am not afraid to explore material and ideas which may contradict what I believe, which I may change in light of new insights both scientific and spiritual. But so far over the last fifteen years of exploring and seeking to understanding as much as is possible for me to know and understand I havent come across anything which has made me stop and think im absolutely and totally wrong in believing that there is more to life than we are consciously aware of or which leads me to dismiss utterly the possibility of the divine or the spiritual dimension of the human experience.

  137. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 10:50am

    If the leader of an organisation charged with serving the spiritual needs of a nation makes statements such as this bishop has made to me that proves that he is ignorant, closed minded, intolerant of different perspectives and perhaps unfit to have such a responsibility. It does not disprove or invalidate the divine or the spiritual aspect of the human experience which is open to everyone without exception.

  138. Rick – I am with you completely on issues of spiritulality whilst at the same time being very anti- cultural expressions of religion. For me, spirituality is the topic of asking personal questions about the bigger picture of the universes – and seeking to answer questions, on faith, that it is beyond our human ability to investigate.

    By the way Tom – there are 5 diametrically opposed theories that each incompletely explain why planes stay in the air! By no means can we claim to understand why they do – it is still a matter of faith.

    There is also plenty of evidence for thinking about spirituality as a unique construct. Indeed modern (post-Newtonian) physics supports theories of multiple realities and there is even evidence to suggest that life continues after death.

    However, this is not the point, although I am very well aquainted with the philosophy of science and ‘scientific method’, as a researcher, there do seem to be some common place misconceptions about science – as assumptions – which may then distort our treatment of the ‘unknowables’. Firstly, science is very limited. We know very little about a lot. However, compared to ‘what there is to know’ this remains infinitesimally small. Therefore while the strength of science comes from a MORE dependable set of processes which increases the trustworthiness (or reliability, for you quantitatives out there….) of methods and therefore findings: science never PROVES. This is because to hold proof requires a complete understanding of the field principles in which A affects B. We would not have had such important discoveries as the neutrino – if we didn’t mistrust ‘on the face of it’ explanantions; and thereby, as scientists, oh yes – have a little faith!

    Therefore, what I am saying is – in the absence of proof – all we have is potential evidence, this can be interpreted either way – and is most uncertain. Science and faith can work together to drive progress and insight. However, the most important (in my opinion) value is that we exercise a little intellectual humility by always asking the question: ‘but what If I am wrong?’.

    It’s not faith (or spirituality) that causes harm in this world, it is cultural expressions of domination, oppression and an attitude of ‘we KNOW the answers’ i.e. claims to knowing the unknowable – ironically, I wonder if these (Nazir-Ali) people think they ARE God!

  139. If it makes you happy Rick, that’s fine. If a divine entity – clearly a very uncaring, inept and possibly cruel one. Funny how this creator would pick the bottom-up method of evolution – the one means of producing life that makes ‘him’ redundant!

    Implying a top-down creation scenario, a divine entity, you are really just pushing the problem one stage back.

    If the cosmos is too complex to come into existence by itself (I don’t buy that but still), then the designer who created it must be even more complex – who created the designer that invented the creator, and so on? You are giving yourself at least two, possibly infinite creation stories, to deal with.

    If a complex divine entity could have existed forever, why not a simple DNA molecule? It isn’t such a miraculous set up, given all the possible planets and all the possible eons for life to emerge.

    Our brains have evolved to navigate around tiny ranges of distance / electro magnetic frequencies / periods of time. We see rocks as rocks because our brains needed a model for the force field that binds occasional atoms separated by oceans of space. We can understand millimetres to kilometres, seconds to centuries, violet to red; all this because it was useful for our ancestors’ survival. But all this implies how insignificant we are.

    There are things we cannot and possibly will never explain. I think throwing the divine into the gaps is a bit lazy, because it’s kind of saying ‘we don’t know who did it, therefore god did it’. I hope people will keep their sleeves rolled up to find out the answers!

  140. david skinner 7 Jul 2009, 11:44am

    Brian Burton. You…you… you…saucy sexually transmitted skainmate. You cokered, clap – carrying codbpiece, you beastly boil- brained bum – bag, you fawning flap -mouthed foot-licker, you rank, rump- fed rectum relisher when did you last sleep with yourself?

  141. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 12:31pm

    Again Tom you seem to be putting words in my mouth I didnt use and concepts which I didnt discuss and dont neccessarily ascribe to. However you will find some very interesting and challenging ideas explored about the very areas your speaking of in the book Cosmos – A Co-creators Guide to The Whole World by Ervin Laszlo and Jude Currivan and in the other material I mentioned in response 128. These materials are largely the work of scientists at the cutting edge of scientific thinking and understanding as well as some of the foremost spiritual thinkers of this century. I’ll finish here by repeating the point I made in response 128 about sentiments expressed by Buddha: Dont agree with anything I say and dont believe anything I say until you’ve tried and tested it and found that it works in your own experience. If you find that it doesnt work then dont use it.

  142. david skinner 7 Jul 2009, 12:41pm

    John m (88) opines that :
    “Mr. Skinner is, of course, a fundamentalist, a textual literalist with very little understanding of the science of Biblical recension and no understanding at all of the implications of believing in the ministry of Christ. His limited understanding of the message of God…..blah,blah,…..his limited understanding …..blah blah blah, blah, blah …..He has absolutely no understanding of the complexities involved in translating ancient texts into modern languages and has no ability to read, or interest in reading and understanding, the Biblical text ….blah.. Blah, blah, huffityblaybaly…. If he had such knowledge and such interests then he would know that the Bible blah …blah…………
    You see, one has to understand, as Mr. Skinner most obviously does not, blah, blah… blimey o‘ blahblah……a deeply duplicitous and uneducated man interested only in causing the maximum of mental damage to those who don’t view the world in the same limited and erroneous way that he does. Blah, blah, blahdy blah….
    His complete lack of any education whatsoever about the faith shines through in every word that he writes here. Seldom have I seen a man more certain in his ignorance nor a man more deliberately and wilfully ignorant about Christianity than Mr. Skinner…………
    Mr. Skinner, is quite simply, an under-educated, ill-informed, Biblical literalist without the intellectual forensic attainments to analyse the Holy Text and without any compassion, love of or understanding of Christ’s words, or of the meaning of His life and His death, and he lacks any rigorous understanding of the science of Biblical recension (or any understanding or knowledge of the science of Biblical Archaeology).

    John you are way too educated for any of us let alone me. You say that Mr Skinner’s “limited understanding ….is based upon his limited understanding of its translation into the version of English which he can read. ….It’s no good at all to simply look at some translation or other into modern English and argue….”

    Well, I have to say that you will have a problem with the French translation of Romans 1: 26- 27 also:

    “C’est pourquoi Dieu les a livrés à des passions infâmes: car leurs femmes ont changé l’usage naturel en celui qui est contre nature; et de même les hommes, abandonnant l’usage naturel de la femme, se sont enflammés dans leurs désirs les uns pour les autres, commettant homme avec homme des choses infâmes, et recevant en eux-mêmes le salaire que méritait leur égarement.”

    And no doubt, John, if we were to look at the 2- 3000 languages and dialects into which the Bible has been translated, either fully or partially, we would find exactly the same meaning. Why don’t you publish the Bible as you translate it, or at least those passages that you think should be corrected?

  143. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 1:01pm

    Richard – response 140, I’ve taken a bit more time to read what you said. Some very interesting points. Yes I agree. Funny how this whole thing seems to be turning into a dialogue about metaphysics, spirituality & science. A very interesting conversation we are having. Big questions, big concepts. I love it.

  144. OK Rick I’ll investigate and theory, if it’s testable, peer-reviewed, and doesn’t fall foul of carl Sagan’s ‘baloney testing kit’ :-)

    Victor Stenger also has a book worth looking into; ‘God: the failed hypothesis’.

  145. Earth to Rick George (104):

    Hm-m-m-m. We do carry on, and I do admire self-educated men even when they delve into esoteric authors who are a tad beyond the average gay man’s experience. Arf, arf.

    I suggest that what ‘we need’ at the moment is to reflect on the final paragraph of the news item which has brought us together, and I quote:

    “This outburst makes the case for immediate disestablishment of the Church of England even stronger. While the Bishop is entitled to his bigoted views, an organisation which provides a platform for them has no place as the established religion of England, still less to special privileges such as reserved seats in the national legislature.” I believe the comment was made by David Christmas (David Christmas!), secretary of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association.

    For the record, Humanism reminds us that what ‘we need’ is to be guided by reason and scientific inquiries, inspired by music and art, and motivated by ethics, compassion and fairness.

    Who says ‘we need’ a church? Define church. Is the Fred Phelps family a church? If Fred Phelps was refused entry into the UK because his homophobia would risk inciting violence against LGBT’s, why is England welcoming the Pope who is equally homophobic, and why can Dr. Michael Nazir-Ali get away with such a stupid remark, more or less saying ‘Welcome, but don’t come in’????

    Don’t get me wrong, I like metaphysical speculation as much as the next guy. I also like to have a string firmly attached to my kite, if you get my drift, guys.

  146. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 2:44pm

    To Bentham lol. nothing I would disagree with in what you’ve said. I think we are on the same page pretty much. Ive been trying to say that the CofE, supposedly an organisation charged with meeting the spiritual needs of the nation, fails totally in that responsibility and needs to make very drastic changes or be replaced with people or organisations that are more democratic and representative of the diversity of our 21st century democracy. I think we need spiritual leaders and organisations that are inclusive and in tune with the spiritual needs of the nation they serve, that are more inclusive and tolerant of different perspectives. Clearly the CofE has lost all credibility in that.

    There are many different religions and spiritual thought systems represented in our country and I think maybe we should be exploring going in more democratic, inclusive, and representative directions in the kind of organisation or group we have as the nations spiritual leadership/head.

  147. Nice try, sweetie, lol.

    To you, John (108) and Skinner, I repeat the words of Mark Twain:

    “Faith is believing what you know ain’t so.”

    All the double-talk in the world ain’t going to change that, lol.

    Tata xxx

  148. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 3:36pm

    Back again! Tee Hee! Another book which speaks about the issues raised in this dialogue is From Queer to Eternity: Spirituality in the Lives of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual People by Peter Sweasey. Ive read this book and it was fascinating, affirming, positive and informative. The synopsis (Amazon) says: This text asks why gay people would want to have anything to do with spirituality. A collection of gay Buddhists, Christians, Jews, pagans and others give their answers. Other questions addressed are: how is being gay spiritually advantageous?; what are the connections between sexuality and spirituality?; and what are the implications of spiritual beliefs for gay politics, sexual behaviour, community and identity?

  149. Brian Burton 7 Jul 2009, 3:47pm

    It seems to m that Bentham and a couple more of you are singing from the same Hymn Sheet….!!! What how dare I upset the Athiusts in our midst!!! It has been muted in hallowed political halls and else-wear that: Reading or singing from the same Hymn sheet is a big fat No! No! to be uttered!
    But me being me ofcourse, I don’t give a Flying Toss About political correctness. They can stick PC where Monkey Chops sticks his nuts! And be damned!

  150. Rick:

    I didn,t mean to scare you. No need to jump on a horse and ride off in all directions.

    The subject is homophobia, a word which you have avoided using time and time again, in favour of the tremendous pioneer work work done to approach sexuality and spirituality. Makes me wonder if you are gay or not.

    Did you know that the Japanese are celebrating Tanabata today? Or that today in 1456, a retrial verdict acquited cross-dressing Joan of Arc of heresy 25 years after she ‘went up in smoke’? Or that Gustav Mahler would have been 149 years old if he hadn’t died in 1911?

    But what’s that got to do with the homophobia present in the C of E?

  151. According to the Bish, the media skewered his words…..

    The Bishop, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, had given an interview to the Sunday Telegraph ahead of today’s launch of the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans in London.

    In the interview he was reported as calling for gay people to repent and change, and his comments provoked a strong backlash from gay groups, liberal Christians and from the media.

    However, today the Bishop said: “The Be Faithful Press Release says that I would be calling on churches and Christians to repent of capitulating to cultures around them and to refocus on the faith of the Church from down the ages and an authentic mission to the nations. This is what I said to the reporter from the Telegraph. I said that we all needed to repent for straying from God’s purpose for us.

    “On being pressed as to whether this included homosexuals, I said something to the effect that yes, we all need to repent when we fall short of God’s will and be transformed. I went on to say a little about how Christians should understand marriage and family and the proper expression of our sexual nature.

    “The reporter then asked about the depths of division in the Anglican Communion and how the Fellowship of Confessing Anglican’s would assist orthodox Anglicans to be a force for renewal and reformation in the Church.

    “Such a nuanced discussion falls very far short of the somewhat lurid headlines and reporting in Sunday’s Telegraph.”

  152. Rick George 7 Jul 2009, 7:42pm

    Dear Bentham, thank you for your concern for my emotional wellbeing dear but fear was not what I was experiencing when I responded to your comments. I did address the issue of religious homophobia in response 118 and also expressed more directly my feelings about this bishops remarks in response 139, although no I didnt use the word homophobia. I havent tried to avoid using the word homophobia especially Ive just responded to certain comments in the dialogue. Yes there is the issue here of prejudice and intolerance towards gay people, which I am one of, but there is also the issue of spiritual ignorance and intolerance, of cultural elitism, seperation theology and exclusivist philosophy which underpins this mans belief system. For a leading figure in a spiritual organisation claiming to represent God to the nation, that is charged with the responsibility of meeting the spiritual needs of the nation in a 21st century democracy to express such homophobic (4 times now) sentiments proves to me that he is unfit to have that responsibility. Also that the organisation that he is part of is outdated and outmoded and generally unfit to fulfil its purpose and function. Happy now dear? xxx

  153. “And no doubt, John, if we were to look at the 2- 3000 languages and dialects into which the Bible has been translated, either fully or partially, we would find exactly the same meaning.”

    What you mean to say is if we were to look at the 2-3000 languages and dialects into which the Bible has been translated, either fully or partially, we would find exactly the same nonsense that religious nuts spout regularly, and never address he endless contradictions contained within.

    Ergo, its a book for those who cannot think.

  154. Rick: Don’t mind me. You are quite well educated and I appreciate your clearing up a thing or two.

    Personally, I have always found the air kind of thin up there in speculation-land, whereas I really believe organized religion is better described as a money-grabbing business than an effort to satisfy the spiritual needs of the flock. Call me a cynic, or a lapsed catholic – same thing.

    While we are on the subject of the 21st century, I have heard it said that there will be no place for the Abrahamic religions in the not too distant future. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN and the Bill of Rights can do as well a job, if not better, of guiding, inspiring and motivating humanity towards a better world than the entanglement of institutionalized religions with secular powers have done. I am inclined to wish that will happen.

    Of course, you have every right to believe in God and to post your opinion. I really should be more open-minded like mature Humanists.

    Hope to read you on other threads.

  155. Rick, I’m sorry but your hungarian hero talks about ‘driven’ evolution, as if there were purpose, for which there is no evidence. And the universe having consciousness, too, is untestable. It sounds dangerously close to the White Noise territory of the likes of Deepak Chopra.

  156. 43 more comments, and won’t it be a record..?
    His Disgrace certainly has ruffled some fevvers..!

    Keith.

  157. What we know now… What we didn’t know then… Blindly following leads to blind behavior, even when we know better.

    1. We know the earth is not flat
    2. We know the earth travels around the Sun and is not the center of the Universe
    3. We know that Germs are the cause of diseases, not Gods Striking us down.
    4. We know the Bible was probably good advice for bronze age men when we did not have a scientific understanding of the cause of things. But we know it is not God or Gods Striking us down now. We know the reason.
    5. We know that Gay behavior occurs in thousands of species and religion only occurs in one species. What is unnatural again?
    6. We know that black people where enslaved and this was justified by the bible.
    7. We know that Women were treated as property and slaves primarily because of religion and the bible.
    8. We know that it isn’t demons that possessed the women accussed of being witches during the witch Trials, it was a type of fungus found in the bread they ate that made them hallucinate and act strange.
    9. How many more absurdities are we going to continue when we know better?
    10. Grow up children, especially the ones who are Children of God, afraid of their own death and easily controlled and manipulated out of fear… grow up, we know better.

  158. #159
    Great Jim…!
    I liked that, muchly…!
    But I feel a RealityCheck moment on its little way..
    Keith.
    SALFORD…..hahaha

  159. Jim well said . . . unfortunately it seems like reality is not for ever one, and some people are drawn to fairy stories to manage their anxieties concerning the way of the world

    We are born – we live – we die . . . and there may well be nothing else beyond death.

    If only people could face this reality, and realise life is now and not some time in the future.

  160. John M.J. 8 Jul 2009, 4:53pm

    Mr. Skinner, you are, as I said, most deeply undereducated. My point, which you singularly failed to grasp, is that it doesn’t matter what language one translates the Bible into – what matters is whether or not one has any understanding at all of the language it was translated from, any understanding at all of the era it was written in and any understanding of the idioms and of the special, or peculiar, meanings of certain phrases in that source language at the time the text in question was written, together with an understanding of the mores of the people who spoke that source language as their primary tongue. You, obviously, do not possess any of those understandings and you wilfully apply your contemporary understandings in the most literal way that you can to the modern translations of our Holy Texts without paying any regard whatsoever to what the words and phrases used in the original (source) language might have meant to the original writer at the time when the text was written.

    That is a pernicious, deeply intellectually dishonest – some would say ‘deliberately downright evil’ – position to take. Let us examine your position – despite the fact that you deliberately misunderstood my argument and used your ‘blah, blah, blah’ method of arguing in a silly attempt to denigrate my hypothesis by supposedly making it look ridiculous by so doing – and that was cheap and not worthy of you for you should have addressed my points instead of engaging in such weak tricks and silly bombast – as I am perfectly aware of what is written at Romans 1, Vs. 26-27 in any language, which, I daresay, is more than you are! Mr. Skinner, you are, as I said, most deeply undereducated. My point, which you singularly failed to grasp, is that it doesn’t matter what language one translates the Bible into – what matters is whether or not one has any understanding at all of the language it was translated from, any understanding at all of the era it was written in and any understanding of the idioms and of the special, or peculiar, meanings of certain phrases in that source language at the time the text in question was written, together with an understanding of the mores of the people who spoke that source language as their primary tongue. You, obviously, do not possess any of those understandings and you wilfully apply your contemporary understandings in the most literal way that you can to the modern translations of our Holy Texts without paying any regard whatsoever to what the words and phrases used in the original (source) language might have meant to the original writer at the time when the text was written.

  161. John M.J. 8 Jul 2009, 5:00pm

    Oh, and further, Mr Skinner, it is accepted by all mainstream Christians, and you are obviously not a mainstream Christian, that St. Paul was addressing the concept and consequences of reverting to paganism – a very real temptation within the Roman Empire at the time because it (the Empire) had as its established religion a particular form of paganism in which one needed to express a belief if one wanted to advance. That this particular form of Imperial paganism was louche and debauched by St. Paul’s time was common knowledge in his day and age, and that it led people who succumbed to it to act counter to their God-given natures was also obvious. That last point is important for that is the point – St. Paul was talking about falling prey to the dominant paganism and running counter to ones nature – indulging in unnatural acts such as having sex with another man (pagan temple sex) when one was naturally heterosexual. He said nothing about homosexuality per se but the corollary is quite clear – if one is homosexual by nature then indulging in an unnatural act for a God-given homosexual would be carnally taking a woman (in pagan temple sex) when ones God-created nature dictated that one should not commit such an act.

    The complete passage, the ‘complete’ passage please note, not your highly selective two verses, describes how a group of Christians left the Church, converted to Paganism, and engaged in orgiastic sexual activities. This type of behaviour was common among pagan fertility religions in Rome, and throughout the Empire, during St. Paul’s time. Saint Paul writes that, later, they were given over to try something new; homosexual behaviour, it seems, was this something. That implies that they had a heterosexual orientation and had engaged only in heterosexual sex throughout their lifetime. They were influenced by their conversion to paganism in some way to engage in homosexual orgies. This was, for them, an unnatural, and thus sinful, activity.

    St. Paul criticised them because they were engaged in a sexual activity which was unnatural for them. For a person with a heterosexual orientation, homosexual behaviour is “shameful,” “unnatural,” “indecent,” and a “perversion.” The passage in Romans is not a condemnation of homosexual behaviour. Rather, it disapproves of sexual behaviour that is against a person’s basic nature, i.e. homosexual behaviours by people whose orientation is heterosexual, and, by logical extension (using our God-given powers of logic, that is), heterosexual behaviours by God-created homosexuals would be equally as “shameful,” “unnatural,” “indecent,” and a “perversion” also.

    For the vast majority of adults, those who are heterosexual, it is indecent for them to engage in homosexual activities. One can interpret Paul’s writing as stating that, for the minority of humans who are homosexual, it would be indecent for them to engage in heterosexual activities. Much has been written about kata fus and para fus as the Saint used those terms but the general consensus of opinion – theological, linguistical, archaeological and philosophical – agrees with my argument rather than your one. Extensive studies of the term, specifically fusi, indicate that it meant, at the time when St. Paul wrote, ‘natural for the being’ or ‘what was inherent to that being’.

    St. Paul was, as far as we can determine at this remove, was a very well educated man and he would have chosen his words with great care and we can be relatively sure that he would have known the precise distinctions which he offered – something which, obviously, you do not, for you have patently never studied them nor thought them, in your arrogance, worthy of study.

  162. Brian Burton 8 Jul 2009, 6:14pm

    Poor, silly old queen david skinner, With luck, may shoot herself in the head. After all She’s always shooting herself in the Foot!

  163. Brian how vitriolic tha’s gettin’ in thi dotage…
    Leave the poor blighters alone…Dave and RealityC.
    They’re good fun…!
    More they are very representaive of the thousands who actually think like that; so they are good honing wheels, beltin’ as wet wheels, sharpenin’ blocks.

    K

  164. Rick George 8 Jul 2009, 8:28pm

    Response to John MJ 162-163. Where do your assertions leave people with a bisexual orientation? Im going to repeat the quote I used earlier from Questions & Answers On Conversations With God By Neale Donald Walsch.”…An argument can be made that the Bible does not condemn homosexuality. An equally strong argument can be made that it does. Whether it does or it does not is beside the point. But if it does, it does so for the same reason that all condemnation exists: fear. What we fear, we condemn. What we love, we praise. Only those who fear homosexuality condemn it. Since God fears nothing, God does not condemn it, nor anything else….there is no form in which the expression of a love which is honest and pure is inappropriate.” Questions & Answers On Conversations With God By Neale Donald Walsch, pg 154.

    Now given the points made there, what is wrong with mutually consensual sexual activity between human adults, without any question of any kind of exploitation or coersion, whether that activity is deemed heterosexual or homosexual? What do you deem to be heterosexual sexual acts and what do you deem to be homosexual sexual acts? Ive got a lot more to say but im not going to say anymore at this point until ive read your response.

  165. John M.J.:

    Masterful.

    High criticism of Scriptures like this exceeds any interpretations known in the history of Christianity. Thank you.

    Do you mind if I cut and paste your comments into my documents for further reference?

    Why doesn’t a bishop in the C of E have this approach which, I believe, was introduced to exegesis by Anglican scholars in the late 19th century?

    Thanks again, and don’t be a stranger!

  166. John M.J. 9 Jul 2009, 3:26am

    Rick George,

    Thank-you for your comment about my comments. I used the two polar extremes – complete homosexuality and complete heterosexuality – as an easy way to highlight the meaning I was driving at. I know that that is a cheap and and facile way to make ones point but, and given the limit to the number of words which we are allowed to post here, it is convenient to use the extremes to help to highlight ones meaning in an easy fashion.

    However, let me address the point you made about bisexuality. I think that the point that St. Paul was making in the passages under discussion was that people should not act contrary to their God-given natures. Therefore, a bisexual person should not act against his, or her, nature. Had the Saint been aware of bisexuality (he may have been, but we have no evidence) then I feel sure from my readings of the Pauline Scriptures that he would have invoked Christ’s message of operative love. In other words what I draw from St. Paul’s teaching about reverting to paganism and practising, indulging in, sex which runs contrary to ones God-given nature is a re-emphasis of Christ’s message of love: don’t commit the act unless love, and, of course, consent, is present and obvious.

    I grant you that decisions of a sexual nature are perhaps more difficult for the bisexual person than for a person whose sexual identity is located at either one of the polar extremes. However, St. Paul was talking about one particular set of circumstances, namely reverting to paganism from Christianity and, as a consequence of such reversion, committing sexual acts contrary to ones nature. I accept that a bisexual person might find that many sexual acts are not contrary to his, or her, nature but, as I said earlier in this post, I believe that the Saint would have pointed to Christ’s concept of love – don’t do it if no love, however one defines love, exists.

    More importantly, St. Paul was castigating the use of sex as a pagan tool of worship. That pagans believed that the sexual act was, in some sense, a prayer and that it should be performed in a temple in front of some representation of a pagan god (and often in full public view). I believe that the Saint disagreed with that very deeply and that he was attempting, amongst other things, to reposition the sexual act into the private sphere and to condemn the pagans’ public usage of carnality as a prayer – he may also have been attempting to move nascent Christianity away from the strictly carnal view of the gods into a much more spiritual, and I use that word advisedly, concept of the One True God.

    So, by using our God-given logical capacities, the message for bisexuals in the entire passage must be one should not act contrary to ones nature and one should act only out of love: the gender or sexual direction of ones partner doesn’t matter – what matters is love, respect and commitment – no matter how transient those qualities might be.

    Does that help?

  167. John M.J. 9 Jul 2009, 4:00am

    Bentham,

    “High criticism of Scriptures like this exceeds any interpretations known in the history of Christianity”

    Well, no! What I’ve written so far at this thread is basic, third Century AD, theology and Biblical textual recension. Actually, it’s almost Bible Studies 101!

    I have no objection whatsoever to you saving my poor words for future reference but please be aware, as you seem to be, that although they are my words those words do not port my thoughts but the thoughts of many who are much more learned than I. I merely reproduce in my own words that which has been taught to me by far greater minds.

    I do this at this site because, quite frankly, the stupidity – the pernicious evil – of people like Mr. Skinner defies belief. His, and others, “reductio ad absurdum” of the Bible quite simple offends my God-given common sense and his attempt to reduce my Christian Faith to a question of what one does, or does not, do with ones sexual organs is, in my opinion, nothing more than mere paganism – he exalts the sexual act just as the pagans did in ancient Rome but in his case he does it it in order to hate. He attempts this trickery from a standpoint of complete ignorance and infantile interpretations of translations into modern languages of the texts under discussion without any knowledge of, or desire to gain such knowledge of, the precise meanings of the words in the source language(s). He has, therefore, absolutely no academic rigour and demonstrates only his own, deeply flawed and entirely biased, ideas about The Faith.

    By all manner of means save my words and use them as you will. However, let me stress again that my words are just an imitation of the ages old and ongoing debate within The Faith – these are not my thoughts alone but the thoughts and musings of many great people throughout the ages. The interpretation of St. Pauls words that I use here is at least 1,700 years old.

  168. Are you getting all this Reality Check, David Skinner and other anti-gay, fundamentalist, sex-obssessed, spirit exorcizing, personality damaging, guilt and shame implanting christian morons? Come on, speak up, let’s hear what you’ve got to say now, you slimy, sneaky, useless hate mongers.

    Love it, John M.J., just love it. it doesn’t do anything for me as a lapsed catholic, I’m afraid nothing will at this point, but you are an inspiration and a perfect example of anenlightened scriptural analyst. Thanks again.

  169. John M.J. 9 Jul 2009, 5:24am

    Bentham,

    Great to have you alongside. I am, as you will, no doubt, have guessed a deeply believing Gay Christian. However, I belong to an ages old movement within The Faith that demands academic rigour and an acceptance of scientifically verifiable points.

    I’m sorry that you are a lapsed Catholic but I’m not going to say anything crass like “I’ll pray for you” or “I’ll offer you to Jesus” – grief, how insulting of our intellects such phrases are. You are made free and you must not act contrary to your nature. I do, however, hope that you have not jettisoned all of your Spirituality – that is to say, all of your sense of wonder and all of your sense of being as an integral and functioning part of this world – when you rejected Catholicism.

    No, that was stupid of me. Sorry! You obviously have not and I can tell that from your last post. You still care and you still love and your love shines through in your words.

    Thank-you kindly for saying that I am “an inspiration and a perfect example of an enlightened scriptural analyst.” That is exactly what I try to be – but I fear that I often fail and that frequently my seed falls on stony ground!

    Nonetheless, between us we can defeat the silly maunderings of the Skinners of this world. Thank-you for your support and your kind and intelligent words.

    I’ll keep on attacking the Scripturally and Religiously blind, such as Mr. Skinner, with mainstream theology and I rely upon the good people like you to back me up with your good and sound perspectives from outwith my narrow and overly-religious world.

    Great to make contact. So, back to the fray. Oh, and by the way, you can find me at www dot newenglishreview dot org. You may not agree with much that is written there but at least you might enjoy it and you will find more of my writings if you follow the links at that site.

  170. John M.J.:

    I am humbled that you should take a minute to address me.

    My apostasy was a long time in the making. I am a cradle catholic, and I spent years in Trappists monateries, working, reading and praying. It’s a long story, let’s just say the pearl of wisdom turned out to be a cue ball.

    I’m 64 now, and have been in a same-sex relationship for 19 years years. Yes, I know what love is.

    Spirituality, of course, will always be part of my life, as sure as the there are zillions of diamonds spread out on the black velvet sky.

    At the moment, I am exploring the White Crane Institute in New York City. Having done yoga for 40 years or so gives me an edge, I suppose, but I know in my heart that I am no better than anyone else; we are all under construction.

    I will check out your website, I promise, but surely you will return to see us from time to time. You will always find friends here. Big hug.

  171. John M.J. 9 Jul 2009, 6:37am

    Bentham,

    I’ll be back. (Couldn’t resist it. Sorry!)

  172. david skinner 9 Jul 2009, 8:22am

    An article appeared in the Guardian Saturday 17 February 2007, entitled “Let’s Talk About Sex. It was all about Garry Frisch, the founder of Gaydar and who had recently thrown himself from the eighth floor of a block of flats with predictable results. Clearly he was genetically wired not so much for homosexuality but more for legalised euthanasia , but in reality there is no difference.

    John M J it all sounds very impressive and scholarly. No doubt your exegesis and hermeneutics might impress those might never have opened a Bible, let alone seen one, but it does not impress me . Unlike you who spends most the time engaged in character assassination, rather than concentrating on the issue , I shall endeavour, God willing, to reply to your objections concerning the traditional translations of Romans 1. I shall do this with reasoned debate, without once needing to refer to your level of intelligence, the extent of your education, or the size of your nose, feet and head, which must be enormous. Plus tard.

  173. Ah, another typical Skinner response. Can’t answer the challenges directly. Unable to stick tyo the topic pout to him. No response to direct questions. No real understanding of the issues.

    All the hallmarks of someone who doesn’t know what he’s talking about. A lot of words, but no actual response to John’s comment. Not too strong on the bible either, are we Skinner? Not very strong on any topic it seems.

  174. Rick George 9 Jul 2009, 10:45am

    Response to John MJ. 168-169. You appear to harbor some prejudice towards pagans. Could you comment on this please? What are your feelings about those who follow and practice earth based or nature based spiritual ideologys or any of the other broad spectrum of beliefs systems covered by the term paganism in the 21st century?
    Will you outline your reasons for giving ultimate authority to the bible as the one credible source of spiritual authority over any of the other myriad texts procliamed to be sources of Gods opinions, guidance, pronouncements etc?
    I understood you to have made a point in an earlier comment about viewing the bible in its proper context, with regard for the period of time it was written and the values and perspective of those who wrote it. Here is what you said…

    “what matters is whether or not one has any understanding at all of the language it was translated from, any understanding at all of the era it was written in and any understanding of the idioms and of the special, or peculiar, meanings of certain phrases in that source language at the time the text in question was written, together with an understanding of the mores of the people who spoke that source language as their primary tongue.”

    Given that point, why disregard the insights of more modern/conventional spiritual thinkers, scholars, enunciators, scientists who have produced material that has spiritual implications, or spiritual leaders alive today, who speak in todays language, todays terms in favor of those who lived in a relatively primitive culture without the insights of science, medicine, psychology, engineering,etc that we have today? Why try and apply the values and principles ascribed to by them, some of which are clearly problematic given todays values and principles of our society on such issues as gender equality, parenting, sexuality, to circumstances and conditions in the 21st century?

  175. Rick George 9 Jul 2009, 11:09am

    Also to John MJ 168. Where do the assertions you make in response 168 leave the concept of free will?

  176. Brian Burton 9 Jul 2009, 12:11pm

    Behold, I stand at the Door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the Door. I will come in with him, and will sup with him and He with me….all exept the homophobic Bish!

  177. Brian Burton 9 Jul 2009, 12:22pm

    I will lift up mine eyes onto the hills, from whence commeth my help. My help commeth from the Lord, who made heaven and Earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved. He that keepeth thee will not slumber, Behold, He that keepeth Isreal will niether slumber nor sleep. The Lord is thy keeper, the Lord is thy shade on thy right hand. The sun will not smite thee by day nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil. He shall preserve thy soul. The Lord shall preserve thy comming in and thy going out. From this time forth, and even for ever more.

  178. Brian Burton 9 Jul 2009, 12:26pm

    Brian says: Read and diguest O you Children Of Pink, or have the back of your legs smacked!

  179. Some very interesting discussion . . . lets try and reach the 200 mark.

    One thing that sticks in my mind with regards the Bishop is the word “Repent”

    In my view when people start throwing around inflammatory terms it is usually to avoid the fanning the flames of something smouldering away under the surface.

    In my view homophobia cannot be viewed in isolation, since it is usually part of a trio and is related to misogyny as well as racism:

    * So the bishop is homophobic in his call that we convert to heterosexuality.

    * So the Bishop is a misogynist in his support of the new orthodox group’s agenda to suppress women’s ascendency to the Bishop hood.

    * So the Bishop is a racist in his attacks on the Islamic faith and Muslims to the extent that he now receives death threats.

    If there is homophobia in the air . . . misogyny and racism are lurking in the background some where.

  180. I have checked spent an hour or so on the New English Review website and I have added it to ‘My Favorites’.

    In a word, it’s wholesome.

  181. Brian Burton 9 Jul 2009, 6:40pm

    Rick George and John MJ,
    You both would do well on the Richard Dimbelby Lectures and I do not mean that to your detrement. Both of you are worthy of an exellant Forum of debate. John MJ, Religious knollage and investgative aptitude, exites the tastebuds of the brain. whilst Rick George has something remarkabley humanistic, in his perseption of, embracing the Spirit. I do not think any Book, in the world holds ultimate authority over people. Ofcourse Books and Bibles are of great literary value to anyone who can read. In my own case, I am Christian which I base on an a simple but strong faith in ‘The Resurection Of The Body’ and ‘Jesus As My Lord.’ Now, I have seen in practice, other belifes as the ‘Humanist.’ I attended a Humanist funeral a few years ago. The deceased, a Lady who, after after WW2, when Europe was in chaos. She imediatley embarked on a mission to help the thousands of orphaned children there. ‘God’s work,’ in my opinion and yet, a Humanist funeral? In this short life we are given, comes the momeent to decide on which road or path we are inclined to follow. I know exactley where I’m going and following the path I have chosen without any trepidation.

  182. Brian Burton . . . for some one who claims to be a Christian . . . what exactly is Christian about referring to Craig on the John Barrowman thread as an “Ungrateful Twit”

    Craig is the last person any one would refer to as ungrateful or a twit.

    Dave also responded to you on that thread by be saying
    “Not sure anyone would call Craig an ungrateful twit. Craig is right to say that more actors should speak up for equal rights.”

    Would Jesus resort to such words unless warranted?
    When I asked you to clarify your statement . . . you declined.?

    You do not inspire me with the idea of following Jesus!!!

  183. Brian Burton 9 Jul 2009, 11:07pm

    John K,
    Correct, I did ignore you on the Bannerman thread because I wonderd what business was it of yours? I even wonderd If you two were an Item?
    That off my chest, I was annoyed with Craig for berating a fine Actor as Steven Fry. To say Steven was ‘Feathering his Nest’ when he earns his bread and butter from his BBC series ‘Kingdom’ and IQ. Both funny and worth every penny he earns. That is the sole reason I called Craig a Twit.
    You can tell Craig I apologise for my unwarented rudness.

  184. david skinner 9 Jul 2009, 11:39pm

    Steady John M J, first you talk about the sin of behaving against one’s nature and then you drag Jesus Christ into it by saying, but this is OK if done consensually and in love. Which is it? Is it sinful to act against one’s nature or is it OK if done in “lerve?” So bestiality, paedophilia, incest and polyamory are all OK if done in “lerve?”

    As you readily admit, your reinterpretation of Romans 1 to mean that Paul was merely prohibiting homosexual temple prostitution, but not that of consensual lerve between two men, is not original but the product of greater minds. Which minds pray? Why not name them? Did you read them off some holiday brochure?

    Robert Gagnon, theologian, says that the only description we have of temple prostitution at Corinth was based entirely on an account by the Roman Geographer, Strabo , who was referring to the temple at Corinth when it was dedicated to Aprhodite several centuries earlier, not during the Roman period. Even then, during the Hellenic period, the prostitutes mentioned were heterosexual women. During the period when Paul was there, the temple was dedicated to Venus —the venerated mother of the imperial family and the highly respected patroness of Corinth—and was no longer a sex symbol – besides which Lesbian intercourse was not a part of temple worship in the ancient world.
    Gagnon says that there is no mention in Romans 1 of the kind of sexual exploitation and coercion one would expect of prostitution: All the participants were more than willing to dog it; they were inflamed with lust for one another. There absolutely no reference to temple prostitution, instead Paul forbids homosexuality per se by alluding to Genesis and creation, where it describes God creating man and woman for one another. There is no mention of Jack and Jack or Jill and Jill- only Adam and Eve. Whenever Jesus Christ talked about sexual relationships he also referred back to Genesis with God creating man and woman and the two becoming one flesh, as complementary constituent parts of a whole. Each every time Jesus Christ talks about marriage it is only that between a man and woman, in a life long relationship. Anything outside of this was considered adultery.

    Robert Gagnon goes onto to explain that Paul clearly understands that the fruit of idolatry is homosexuality. Are we to assume that the rest of the behaviour listed from verse 28 – 32, such as envy, murder, ruthlessness are also OK amongst consensual couples, just as long as they are not associated with temple worship?

    In Romans 6: 16 and 1 Corinthians 6:9, the same Greek word, “akatharsia,” appears in Romans1. It simply means that which is unclean and in these cases is not even associated with idolatry but simply with moral filth.

    In I Corinthians: 1 Paul says, “It is actually reported that there is immorality among you and of a kind that is not found even among pagans. He was referring to incest; but the fact is that if even pagans found incest and homosexuality ( to use a dreadful pun) “below the belt,” why would Paul find it acceptable in a consensual relationship, especially if the rest of the Bible was even more condemning of homosexuality than the rest of the ancient world?

    John M J claims that he has read the anti-homosex texts in Scripture in their historical and literary context. But he has not stated his sources. Was it a Thomson’s holiday tour guide who wanted to spice up a holiday? But maybe if Paul was not talking about temple cultic practise, could it be, in fact, what he says – that homosexual acts are an abomination per se?

  185. To refer to homosexuality in the Bible is very poor exegesis. Homosexuality does not come into existence as a term until around about the 1890s. One cannot refer to homosexuality in the bible, but one can refer to sexual practices. Fore example, when one refers to sodomy one is not referring to homosexuality per se; but a sexual activity relating to heterosexual practice.

  186. “So bestiality, paedophilia, incest and polyamory are all OK if done in “lerve?””

    Ah, yes, the classic comparison to homosexuality. The classic war cry of the bigot.

    Wrong again. A gay relationship, such as mine, is between two consenting adults. Paedophilia is not. My relationship adds to society, as we both pay taxes, and bring stability to both our lives. Paedophilia damages lives.

    No comparison. Its a bit like comparing your stupidity to murder. Although, I would put your stupidity as an equal sin based on its magnitude.

    Well done on answering the points on evolution. As usual you incapable of offering any proof to your nonsense Skinner.

  187. The New Testament Greek word ‘akatharsia’, as a noun, and ‘akathartos’, an adjective, appears in Romans 1:24, 2 Corinthians 12:21, and Galatians 5:19. It is typically translated as ‘uncleanness.’ In the King James Version of the Bible, these are translated in the following ways:

    Romans 1:24: “Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:”

    2 Corinthians 12:21: “And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and that I shall bewail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they have committed.”

    Galatians 5:19: “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness.”

    In the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) there were many laws regarding ritual uncleanness. A person or a couple might become ritually unclean for a period of time:

    As in when a man and a woman have engaged in sexual intercourse, they are unclean until the evening.

    As in when someone touches or is close to a dead body, they are unclean for seven days.

    Jesus and his disciples violated the Hebrew Scriptures’ laws regarding ritual uncleanness. For example, they did not wash his hands before eating. In Mark 7: 6-23 (copied by the author of Matthew in Matthew 15: 3-20), Jesus enunciated the great principle that there is no ceremonial, but only moral and spiritual, uncleanness. He repudiated uncleanness, saying that one is defiled by “the things that come out of his heart, evil thoughts, hatred, adultery, murder….” That is, one does not become unclean by the actions of his, or her, hands and, by implication and logic, by any other member.

    Quite simply, Mr. Skinner, the concept of ‘akatharsia’ as you use it is invalid and not applicable to your argument. It is a concept of ritual uncleanness, it is not a concept of damnation nor is it a moral rule, and a concept, moreover and most importantly, which Christ and His disciples rejected. You do understand that, I trust, Christ, and His disciples, rejected the concept of ‘akatharsia’: and I’ll state it again for you seem to need Biblical proof rather than letting the love of God shine forth from your heart, you can find that rejection in Mark 7: 6-23 and Matthew 15: 3-20.

    Once again you have rejected the universal message of love which Christ preached and have, again, revealed yourself as a narrow rule-based fundamentalist (with a strange and deep respect for some cardboard and paper rather than for the Spirit that moves us all) and with a penchant for interpreting ancient texts in ways which suit only your own inbuilt prejudices, and in ways which have no bases in the scientific recension of ancient texts.

    Your selective interpretation of New Testament Greek is quite insupportable when one truly understands the language. Moreover, ‘akatharsia’ (uncleanness) does not occur in First Corinthians, Philippians, Second Thessalonians and Philemon.

    I think, on the balance of the written evidence, such as it is and as it has come down to us, that you may not use the concept of ‘akatharsia’ in the way that you do. Quite simply, you are wrong to do so and you are interpreting New Testament Greek in a highly selective and unjustifiable way simply in order to suit your own prejudices.

  188. Rick George,

    I have nothing against modern Paganism (and I WILL dignify its practice with an upper-case first letter no matter how much that might offend Mr. Skinner). My comments about non-Christian beliefs were meant to apply only to paganism in the ancienct world and I am deeply sorry that you understood them as applying to the highly spriritual practices of contemporary Paganism. I know many modern Pagans and, although I do not believe as they believe, I know them to be deeply spiritual and caring people.

    I think that the problem lies in the very word ‘pagan’. It defines both the practices of the ancient world and a particular strand of spirituality in our modern world. Perhaps we should invent different words for these two practices but I cannot, for the life of me, see which two different words we could use without denying the Pagan inheritances from the ancient pagan world – and not all of those inheritances are necessarilly bad – because, of course, one has to bear in mind that modern Christian practices owe much to our pagan past.

    Believe me, I did not mean to offend or denigrate the Pagan belief systems. I do not believe as modern Pagans do but I do recognise that there is a spiritual component to that belief. I am uncomfortable with it but I will not deny its presence nor the comfort it can give to troubled souls.

  189. Brian Burton 10 Jul 2009, 6:19am

    After reading David Skinner, John MJ and Will,
    The only thing I can Come up with is :’Praise The Lord And Pass The Amunition.’
    All of you should think about the ‘Sermon On The Mount’….. Blessed Are The Meek, For They Shal Inherit The Earth.’ Springs to the for, in your case….. Whoever is right may, ‘Inherit The Wind.’

  190. Brian Burton,

    Good one. Made me laugh a lot. You’re quite right! If we carry on like this then the Wind is all there is going to be. Love it!

    Yours,

    John M. J.

  191. By the way, the Robert Gagnon to whom Mr. Skinner in his post (above) referred, was an ordained elder at a Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh (USA) and was deeply implicated in anti-homosexual and Biblically literalist propaganda as evinced in his published works – ‘The Bible and Homosexual Practice’: Texts and Hermeneutics (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2001); and co-author (with Dan O. Via) of ‘Homosexuality and the Bible’: Two Views (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003).

    Not exactly an unbiased academic interested only in balanced reporting, then.

    Mr. Skinner, as usual, demonstrates his biases in his choice of his favoured author on the subject under discussion.

    The theology is, in those works, weak and simplistic and a reflection of the type of faith that minds like Mr. Skinner’s indulge in. Simply put, it is a theology of hate and poor old Mr. Skinnerf has fallen for it hook, line and sinker.

  192. david skinner 10 Jul 2009, 7:57am

    Good morning John K , first of all I must say how much I appreciate your posts, which after a cursory glance seem to be devoid of ad hominems – unlike most of the hydrophobic barkings and droppings one sees here.

    When you say that homosexuality in the Bible is very poor exegesis since the word “homosexual” only appears in relatively recent translations and that one can only refer to the practice of sodomy, I could not agree more. I have already stated elsewhere, elsewhere, that words such as homosexuality, heterosexuality, homophilia, heterophilia, homophobia and heterophobia are products of evolutionary humanism, designed to give legitimacy to the idea that evolution has produced different kinds of “homo sapiens.” Here the latin word “homo,” meaning man, becomes confused with the Greek which means the same.

    According to the web site,“Daily writing tips, “The word homosexual entered English via a translation of Krafft-Ebing’s “Psychopathia Sexualis. The second part of the word, sexual, is from a Late Latin word. Mixing Latin and Greek elements in this way annoyed another student of human sexuality:
    ” ‘Homosexual’ is a barbarously hybrid word, and I claim no responsibility for it.” –H. Havelock Ellis, “Studies in Psychology,” 1897.

    I have also read that the word homosexuality was invented by Károly Mária Kertbeny – Inspired no doubt by Darwin. It was a resoundingly successful attempt to legitimise homosexuality as a distinct sex, innate, immutable and maybe even more highly evolved than its antithesis, “heterosexuality,” another “orientation,” coined later by the zoologist, Karl Jager. The use of Greek prefixes and suffixes, “homo”, “hetero”, “philia” and “phobia”, give them the appearance of scientific authenticity.

    I, however, am not prepared to play this silly game of evolution; I am a man – neither homosexual, bisexual, poly sexual or heterosexual. But if the gay lobby want to play it, I will claim that I am genetically wired to be homophobic, just as they claim to be homophiliac or homophile. According to the sham Commissioners for Human Rights and Equality, I claim my human right to be a homophobe. I yam what I yam.

  193. david skinner 10 Jul 2009, 8:46am

    The Pink Bible says that Christ’s message was simply love, but like other Christian writers such as Augustine who said “Love and do what you like:” Dilige, et quod vis fac and Paul who said, “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law,” their words have been have been grossly distorted and taken out context , especially by the monstrous and heaving abomination, rev Sharon Ferguson, the chief executive of the LGBT Christian Movement. Love actually sometimes mean chastising someone, which at the time is painful and may not be fully appreciated by the one being disciplined. But painful discipline if motivated by love will stop a child getting into danger.

    Christ had a great deal to say about hell. He never seemed stop talking about it and warned of the things that could send an individual there.

    For instance in Mark 7: 21- 23, he said, “ For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.

    In Matthew 5:27- 30, he said, “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

    In Matthew! 8:3 – 9 he said, “And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh! Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.

    By offences to children that would mean leading them astray to commit sin, such as those mentioned above. Another word for this would be to groom children. The whole of government and especially the outfit called the Department for Schools, Children and Families is under God’s judgement for attempting to pervert and corrupt children as young as five.

  194. david skinner 10 Jul 2009, 9:05am

    The only accurate part of John M J’s post is that Robert Gagnon is exactly who he says he is. And pray why should not Robert Gagnon be biased against sodomy and effeminacy? What is wrong with being biased? I experience torrents of it being dumped on me on this site and no one complains. What kind of planet John, do you live on where you never expect to have your views challenged. Are you God ? I suppose Hitler would have made the same complaint:” Those British are so biased; I am going to dismiss them.”
    Again just read your last sentence. No debate, no reason – just the same old character assassination tripe. John, honey, try reading Robert Gagnon; you might learn something.
    I’ m off to make a cup of tea. Three cheers for Lord Waddington; but we still have much territory to reclaim.

  195. Rick George 10 Jul 2009, 10:45am

    David Skinner, I have a number of questions I would like to ask you but I shall begin with God.

    Can you describe your understanding of what God is? What qualities and attributes do you believe God to have? How would you describe the nature of God?

  196. David Skinner-

    Since you’re so knowledgeable about ‘sodomites’ in the Bible, what happens to a heterosexual man who has anal sex with a woman? Is he too, a sodomite?

    Also, what does the Bible say about lesbians? I am aware of “God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature” Romans 1:21-27. However this is open to interpretation, and is the only pseudo-mention of lesbians in the whole of the Bible, even if it is an actual mention! I can find NO other conclusive, outright condemnation of lesbianism, I must therefore assume we are fine!

    And perhaps, David, you have heard of Naomi and Ruth? “Do not press me to leave you or to turn back from following you! Where you go, I will go; where you lodge I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die — there will I be buried. May the Lord do thus and so to me, and more as well, if even death parts me from you!” – Ruth 1:16-17. So you see what Ruth and Naomi had was actually a lesbian relationship. The Bible uses the same word – “dabaq” (Genesis 2:24, Ruth 1:14) – to describe Ruth’s feelings for Naomi, a feeling spouses are supposed to feel toward each other :)

    If you do indeed answer and/or dicusss my points above, rather than go off on a un-related tangent to avoid them, I would be very surprised!

  197. Brian Burton 10 Jul 2009, 12:17pm

    David Skinner and John MJ,
    You two should Kiss and make up. This constant wrangling is great typing exercises for both of you but a little wearing on our poor mosaic eyeballs that has to read it all and try and absorbe it.

    There is something so unique about Christ. Of course, just as there are false dawns before the dawn itself, and winter-days so full of sudden sunlight that they will cheat the wise crocus into squandering it’s gold before it’s time, and make some foolish bird call to it’s mate to build on barron boughs, so there were Christians before Christ. For that we should be greatful. The unfortunate thing is that there have been none since.
    Our past is what we are, it is the only way by which people should be Judged!

  198. Rick George, John M.J.:

    I recognize genuine scholarship when I see it, and you two are masters both in your approach and in your delivery. Chapeau.

    Those of us who have been posting regularly here have endured D. Skinner’s illusive antics for some time.

    While we are actually learning from your expertise and your patience, not to mention your facility to explore spirituality fearlessly, D. Skinner is holding on to his belief system for dear life.

    Where would he be if he allowed himself to doubt for a minute that he is inspired by the spirit of god almighty ‘whose ways are not our ways’?

    Regardless of my own ongoing and irreversible apostasy, it would be treacherous of me to deny that many people I know have found fullfillment in religion. On the other hand, it would be foolish of me to believe that all those who are drawn to religion are genuinely concerned with their own well-being.

    In that sense D. Skinner, in my opinion, is bent on self-destruction, and needs phychiatric evaluation.

    Unfortunatly, none of us can can force him to take care of himself, and none of us can take the initiative for him. His only joy in life seems to be to disrupt us, and he must be delighted to have your attention.

    A word to the wise: if you cede to the temptation of name-calling, he will relentlessly use that against you.

    We know him well, and there are others like him who torment us from time to time. Perhaps these fundies are better here with us, out of harm’s way, than out in the open where someone might actually take a shot at them.

    Although Skinner will be glad to hear that he exasperates me to no end, some of the guys actually use his rants to lubricate the little wheels in their brains, and it makes for entertaining and informative diatribes.

    In this way, the comments on PinkNews are as much of an education as say, the excellent articles on the New English Review.

    At he moment, for example, I am riveted by Rick George’s inquiry into the nature of the Abrahamic deity.

  199. Brian Burton 10 Jul 2009, 12:41pm

    Ah! Lezabella, My Princess, What a corking letter to every Gay Persons’ (Troll under the bridge) Dear David S. He is bound to answer you in carefully chosen (cutting) words as he dose when he sometimes chews bricks. Whats interesting to me is; I get to wondering, if D.S. has ever addressed a Princess such as your good self? He slags us Gay men off like there was no tomorrow. But, through all his massif, homophobic abuse, he callously slings in the Gay direction, ‘His Chistian Charity Persona’ shines through….Cheers, Bowing very low to my Princess!

  200. Brian Burton 10 Jul 2009, 2:10pm

    Benthan, Oh! voice of the Wise.For that you are mon ami!
    I sometimes wish I could return to the Coal-Mining Town where I was born. Would I be welcomed or rejected, as Our Lord was on his return to Nazereth? I don’t claim to be as exalted as Our Lord, I hasten to add. Nor do I feel exalted in any way. Jesus was rejected because I imagene Familuarity breeds contempt. The People of Nazereth knew who the man Jesus was! Son of the carpenter Joseph. This up-start must be sent packing, and He left. Jesus could not even help them by performing miricles. They did not belive in him, this Son of Joseph. If only they had realised who Jesus really was at that time? He faired better in every other Town and Village He passed through.
    Saint Paul, he never got to meet Jesus in the flesh, But, once the Spirit entered that remarkable man, Boy! what a Man! I for one would not have liked to meet the fiesty Paul. I would probably end up having a slanging match with this wonderful Saint. He did not suffer fools lightly. But there was something burning inside that Man that exploded into the Voice that was his Lord and Master Jesus Christ. I think I will go back to my home-town. I may be rejected, but, who knows? Who can tell the future exept God?

  201. david skinner: “Christ had a great deal to say about hell. He never seemed stop talking about it and warned of the things that could send an individual there.”

    Ok, so please refer me to the verses where Jesus mentions homosexuality as being something that could send you to hell – I don’t remember Jesus ever mentioning it in the NT. Strange, since we’re to believe it was so important.

    DS: “By offences to children that would mean leading them astray to commit sin, such as those mentioned above. Another word for this would be to groom children. The whole of government and especially the outfit called the Department for Schools, Children and Families is under God’s judgement for attempting to pervert and corrupt children as young as five”

    So show me evidence that education authorities are teaching children to commit “adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness”.

  202. “I, however, am not prepared to play this silly game of evolution; I am a man”

    Ah, Skinner again on evolution. Its amazing that he can never actually provide an alternative proof to evolution? Oh, wait, silly me, the bible and the 6000 year old earth. Thats not proof, its a story. How about a real alternative to evolution that you can prove?

    No?

    I can only assume there must be great money in the conspiracy that is the falsifying of the fossil record. Care to explain the fossil record to me Skinner?

    No?

    Didn’t think so. Not capable of one, are we? Just spouting bible quotes and “ad hominem” arguments towards gay people. Truly astounding is the mind of a child.

    And you may be man, Skinner, but you’re very far from being a human being. Besides, included in the definition of a man is an ability to think… you have repeatedly demonstrated the total opposite. There is however another word for you: nut.

  203. david skinner 10 Jul 2009, 9:49pm

    Rick George
    The divide in humanity is not between those who believe in God and those who don’t but between those who believe in the one true God and those who worship idols- including the idolatry of evolution in the form of Nature, spelt with a capital N, and the worship of self.

    God’s name is ‘I am who I am’ or ’1 Will be what I will be’ . He cannot be hindered from being what he is and doing what he will do. God is therefore eternal, all knowing, all powerful and omnipresent . God is both infinite and personal – he is the God who comes to us and communicates to us personally. He is also both merciful and gracious: he is love but also righteous and pure; he is just but also compassionate .
    God is three in one. God is three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit – something that no one has been able to explain.

    But I am certain that you know this; so I am not sure where you are going with this ?

  204. How dare this man in the name of God denounce me for being gay. My Father used to say that religion causes friction and hatred. This man must be the epitome of my Fathers views. I was baptised C of E, but I denounce any religion that makes remarks like this that I find so deeply offensive. I still have my God, but I don’t want religious zealots like him coming anywhere near my faith. This is not an offensive post, I am merely being as rude to him, as I find he is being to me. There is another story in the news tonight that the C of E may cut back the number of Bishops to save cash. Let this bigot be one of the first to go.

  205. Rick George 10 Jul 2009, 9:52pm

    David Skinner, this is primarily directed to you, but if others wish to comment they may do so. Im going to use some quotes from Conversations With God, Book 2, by Neale Donald Walsch which I feel are relevant to the discussion at hand.

    “…in order for organised religion to succeed, it has to make people believe they NEED it. In order for people to put faith in something else, they must first lose faith in themselves. So the first task of organised religion is to make you lose faith in yourself. The second task of organised religion is to make you see that IT has the answers you do not. And the third and most important task is to make you accept its answers without question…Everywhere religion has gone it has created disunity – which is the OPPOSITE of God…” (Conversations With God, Book 2, Neale Donald Walsch, Pg 247-248).

    David Skinner, please could you respond to these points and answer my earlier questions from comment 197. Thank you.

  206. Rick George 10 Jul 2009, 9:55pm

    oh sorry I see you’ve answered while I was tapping away. Right lets have a look see…

  207. Mihangel apYrs 10 Jul 2009, 10:17pm

    Mr Skinner: you say that your god is the one true god.

    1 prove that god exists

    2 prove that your particular god is it

    3 show why I should give a fuckif 2 is true: your god is evil.

    And I yam wot I yam: gay, unchangeable, compassionate to people. I am not judgemental, and don’t give a damn what you think except don’t interfere with me.

    Love and kisses

  208. david skinner 10 Jul 2009, 10:26pm

    Lezebella, Looking at the story as whole, there is no clue whatsoever of a such a lesbian relationship. Neither is there anywhere else in the Bible, any reference to Ruth that would lead one to conclusion that she was a lesbian. Apart from the translation of this one word, upon which you hang your whole argument please show me any other indication either in the story or other parts of the Bible that would support your theory.

    Lezabella may I submit to you these two situations for comparison and contrast?

    1. In May, 2008 it was reported in the press: “Two women have married each other in a civil partnership – more than 30 years after they became husband and wife. Martin Packer had to annul his marriage to Linda so he could be legally recognised as a woman after a sex change. This left both of them facing a financial blow as they would have had to forfeit certain tax and pension rights. The couple decided to take part in the civil ceremony, despite admitting they are no longer in a sexual relationship. Miss Martin, 60, said: “We are, and always have been, soul mates and best friends ever since 1977 when we got married.” But, to get my gender recognition certificate, we had to get our marriage annulled. “When that happened we would have been liable for inheritance tax but it also messed up life insurance and pension rights.”

    2. In April 2008 it was reported: ‘Two elderly sisters have lost their battle to enjoy the same tax benefits as same-sex couples who register for civil partnerships.
    Joyce Burden, 90, and her sister Sybil, 82, have lived together in the same house for years, caring for older family members and now for one another.
    Concerned that when one of them dies the other will have to sell the house to cover inheritance duties, the sisters have campaigned for decades to have their relationship treated like a marriage for the purposes of tax law.
    The Civil Partnership Act 2004 allows same-sex couples to register as civil partners, exempting them from inheritance tax. However, the Act prevents partnerships from being registered between close relatives.

    Maybe Lezabella you could put in a good word for these two loving sisters? How about it.?

  209. Rick George 10 Jul 2009, 10:38pm

    Ok. Right.

    “The divide in humanity is not between those who believe in God and those who don’t but between those who believe in the one true God and those who worship idols- including the idolatry of evolution in the form of Nature, spelt with a capital N, and the worship of self.”

    When you use the word worship, what do you mean by that? Worship in what sense? Could you expand a bit more on what you mean by idolatry? What is your understanding of the term?

    I understand the idea of evolution but why do you feel threatened by the concept?

    OK. Now then, God?…

    ” He cannot be hindered from being what he is and doing what he will do. God is therefore eternal, all knowing, all powerful and omnipresent ”

    Ok, nothing I would disagree with there… although I’d possibly question the use of gender terms, but we can have that discussion later…

    “God is both infinite and personal – he is the God who comes to us and communicates to us personally”

    Yes, I can go with that. Id like to emphasize the last few words you’ve used in that sentence, because they do leap out at me. “..the God who comes to us and communicates to us personally”

    “…he is LOVE” (emphasis mine)

    Yes, certainly, no issues there. But, could you please outline your understanding of what LOVE is, what it means, what it looks like, how it is demonstrated/manifested/revealed etc?

    “God is three in one. God is three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit – something that no one has been able to explain.”

    Very interesting concept, I would definitely like to help expand your mind a little on the whole area of the ‘Trinity’, the ‘Three In One’, the ‘Triune Being’, the ‘Triangle’.

    Ummm, indeed. Im gonna have a little think. I’ll be back.

  210. The old former Pakistani will never be able to ‘hold his head up’ in public toilets again.

    All the best.

  211. Brian Burton 10 Jul 2009, 11:05pm

    I do not belive in David Skinner thats for sure. He’s a public menece and should be in a real Prison, rather than the prison he lives in now. He is not fit to be amongst decent people.

  212. Lezabella:

    I agree with you about Ruth & Naomi…

    Take you own advice, please, and do not feed the troll.

    But, it’s up to you, love.

  213. Remember, David Skinner’s reaction to the epidemic of homophobic bullying in schools is ‘bring it on’. He welcomes making life hell for young LGBT people’s lives. This guy is sadistic, twisted, spiteful, malicious as well as brainwashed.

  214. AdrianT:

    As Bugs Bunny would say: ‘What a maroon !’

  215. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 12:13am

    Rick George you ask could I please outline my understanding of what LOVE is, what it means, what it looks like, how it is demonstrated/manifested/revealed etc?

    Why not let the Bible speak for itself?

    I John 4: 7 – 12Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

    2 Phillipian 2- 8 :5Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross!

    What is love? It is loving the unlovely, even when the unlovely hurls that love back in the face of the one who loves. Love is not a feeling but an attitude that translates into sacrificial care, responsibility and respect for another. Always wanting the best for the other even at great cost to oneself. Love is an act of grace.

    We are all under condemnation and God could have written us all off, instead he sent his one and only son, Jesus Christ so that none might perish but have eternal life.

  216. Simon Murphy 11 Jul 2009, 12:22am

    All I can say is that David Skinner’s ‘god’ is one nasty, mean-spirited, ugly fuck.

    David Skinner himself could be quite hot in bed, perhaps. All that christian repression needs an outlet after all.

    Then again I can’t think of a gay guy who would lower himself to Mr Skinner,

    Don’t worry David. I believe Dolly The Sheep has a daughter. That’s your scene I believe.

  217. But love, Mr. Skinner, as expressed in the Bible is much more complicated than that. One needs to understand the original languages. Just for example, and I am not denying, decrying or denigrating your quotes for they are accurate and apposite, let us consider the Song of Solomon, specifically let us consider Solomon 1:2, just as an example of the difficulties of recension and exegesis – “Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love is better than wine”.

    That would appear to be, when read in context (and everybody should read Solomon for it is very beautiful and poetic), a straightforward declaration of a female’s love for her man. However, Mr. Skinner, that is not necessarily the case. Our ancestors were just as subtle and sophisticated in their use of language as we are today – perhaps, given the many linguistic puzzles and word-games which they left and we are still trying to decode, even more subtle and sophisticated in their use of language than we are at present.

    “Let him kiss…” (nashaq) means, literally, many things, ‘let him touch or kiss or embrace an armed man’, ‘let him weaponise a man’ (used sometimes as a euphemism for titillating a male person into an erect state), ‘to rule’ or sometimes ‘that touched’.

    “…me with the kisses…” (nshiyqah) means simply to kiss or in some sense to use the lips – but, not to be too crude, which lips to use is left unsaid.

    “…of his mouth…” (peh) means the mouth as an instrument of both blowing out and sucking in, both literally and figuratively.

    “…for thy love…” (dowd) is from an largely unused root at the time this verse was written meaning ‘to boil’ or ‘overflow’ or ‘to erupt’; figuratively, and by extension, it also means ‘to ejaculate’, ‘to love’ and ‘a love-token’ (and such were very often phallic in the ancient world), ‘a lover’, ‘a friend’; but most specifically it means ‘an uncle’ which we know from many other sources often, but not always, meant an older male lover of a young male.

    “…is better…” (towb) means ‘good’ as an adjective as used in this verse, and does not appear to mean anything other than that.

    “…as wine…” (yayin or yah’-yin) has many meanings. It can mean ‘intoxication’, ‘banqueting’, ‘orgiastic and louche behaviour’ and it can mean ‘fermented wine’ or ‘he who drinks wine to excess’.

    So this one verse – and there are many others which offer the same puzzle in both the Old and New Testaments – might be referring to a soldier giving a blow-job to his beloved male partner or it might mean, as perhaps you would prefer to interpret it, a loving lady assisting her man in a sexual way. After two-thousand, plus some, years language has shifted so much that it is impossible to know – particularly given our ancestors’ penchant for perpetrating linguistic jokes and for deliberately hiding and obfuscating meanings behind elaborate and puzzling phraseology.

    We meet exactly the same puzzle when attempting to penetrate the language of the New Testament. Again, our ancestors played linguistic pranks and jokes and used language as a sort of code – not very surprising given that the early Church was persecuted and needed to protect itself. New Testament Greek ports a wealth of obscure and hidden meanings and cannot be taken at face value. Unravelling the true meanings from the texts which have come down to – mangled and incomplete texts at that – is a well-nigh impossible task.

    There are many verses of love in our Bible but all of them can be analysed in the same way – just look at the original language of just a few such as Proverbs 17:17, Proverbs 30:18-19, Song of Solomon 2:16 , Song of Solomon 4:10, Song of Solomon 8:6, Song of Solomon 8:7, 1 Corinthians 13: 1-8, Ephesians 5:25, Ephesians 5:33, Colossians 3:14, 1 Peter 4:8, 1 John 3:16, 1 John 3:18, 1 John 4:8, 1 John 4:18. Word after word and phrase after phrase in these passages, and many others, may not mean what you currently think that they mean.

    Couple all that with the fact that the Bible differs in its words depending upon which particular ancient strand of Christianity one belongs to – Thomine, Jamesian, Orthodox, Catholic, American Fundamentalist – and one has an absolute minefield of different interpretations and different applications of meaning.

    Add in the fact that most mainstream Christians do not believe that the Bible is the dictated Word of God but the Word as filtered through the free, made free by God, and fallible minds of men and one reaches, quite easily, the idea, Mr. Skinner, that your set of absolutist and fundamentalist beliefs are just silly and impossible to support from the evidence.

    The only thing of which we can be sure is that Christ’s message of love was, and is, absolutely universal. That you exclude some, us gay people, from that message is not to your credit but a demeriting stain upon your soul.

    I will pray for you, brother.

  218. Bentham,

    “In that sense D. Skinner, in my opinion, is bent on self-destruction, and needs phychiatric evaluation.”

    No, I’m not sure about that. I think that Mr. Skinner is quite genuine in his beliefs and sincerely worried about our souls and their ultimate destination. He may be, indeed, in my opinion, he is, quite simple a wrong-headed, and literalist, Biblical fundamentalist but I don’t think that he operates out of hate at this site. I think that he operates here out of a quite genuine love and worry for all of us. Of course, I may be wrong and I am relatively new here and you all know him and his posts better than I do at the moment but he does come across to me as a concerned man – albeit a silly and rather under-educated man.

    However, being silly and under-educated is not a crime – unless one wilfully persists in those traits after being informed, that is as he seems to want to do.

    That he obviously does not accept the provable thesis of evolution and cannot accept that there may be differently valid ways of viewing Christianity and Christian faith from his own, and that he persists in his intransigent, fundamentalist belief despite it being disproved, is not a proof of the absence of love it is merely proof of his profound stupidity and his inability to reason (perhaps, even, of his need for simple rules in his life that he can understand in simple ways because he is aware of some deep character flaw within his make-up) – but I don’t think that his position here is any proof of his inability to love us or to worry about us.

    But you all know him better than I do and I am probably being too generous to an an adversary.

    By the way, thank you for your kind comments about www dot newenglishreview dot org. They are much appreciated by me and I am glad that you have enjoyed reading there. I look forward to meeting you in our comments section.

    Yours,

    John M.J.

  219. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 7:03am

    Simon, you don’t sound as though you are so hot on love yourself. Where is your spirit of generosity of mercy and grace in allowing me to spoil the purity and beauty of the homoplanet ? What happened to diversity? Come on live and let live, after all I have my human right to be homophobic – and, as I have said before, I was born a homophobe; I have no choice but to be true to my nature. By whose standard are you to judge me anyway? There is no supreme gay God of the homoplanet – unless it is the Trinity of Mckellen, Summerskill and Elton John along with their apostles, Boy George, Frisch, Greening, Ernst Roehm et al – to whom I might have to answer. What is more, if I am stronger than you, and there is no supreme gay referee in the sky, to whom you can appeal; if there are no objective moral absolutes and I am free to invoke Gaydars’ promise of getting “What I Want, When I Want It,“ any protestation from you is futile. If you don’t exercise a little more gay charity you might find yourself condemned to live on planet earth, or worse still in Islam.

  220. Mr. Skinner,

    “I was born a homophobe”.

    Ridiculous! No one was ever born to hate. You have taught yourself to hate and you must now teach yourself to love in accordance with Christ’s words.

    Hate, if you look at any child at teat, is not a natural condition. One learns, as you have done, to hate.

    To think, in my last post to ‘Bentham’, that I defended you and asserted that you operated here in love, misguided in my opinion but in love nonetheless, and now you post this poem of evil and panegyric of hate.

    You do not have a ‘human right to hate’: you have a human right, and a natural, God-driven right in my opinion, and a natural decency to find reasons for loving and to operate in love.

    Your last post was nothing more than a foul and hate-filled invective. You should be ashamed of yourself!

  221. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 8:38am

    On the one hand, we have an evil ‘Fundamentalist’ like David Skinner and on the other hand, we have ‘Gay Anti Christ diehards’
    Well, the good news is: ‘Jesus wants you all for Sunbeams.’ Now is’nt that better than Brother taking up arms against Brother?

    Where have all the flowers gone, long time passing. Where have all the flowers gone, long time ago? Where have all the flowers gone, young men picked them every one, when will they ever learn, When will they ever learn?
    Where have all the young men gone, long time passing, where have all the young men gone, long time ago? Where have all the young men gone? Gone to grave yards every one.
    When will they ever learn? When will they ever learn?

  222. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 9:07am

    John M.J. I think you need to take off your rainbow glasses; you are suffering from polyvision.

    We do not worship a God of confusion but a God of justice and truth. Jesus Christ referred to himself as the way, the truth, the light and the life.

    Johns Gospel, chapter 1 says, “In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. The true light that enlightens every man was coming into the world.” …..” He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world knew him not. He came to his own home, and his people received him not. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God.”

    In his first epistle, John, the Apostle, said over and over again how we are to know that we are truly disciples of Christ; he uses the word, “know” over thirty times. Here are just a few examples:

    I John 2: 3 -4
    We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him

    1 John 2: 12 -14 I write to you, fathers, because you have known him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, dear children, because you have known the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you have known him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

    1 John 2: 19- 21
    But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth.I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth.

    1 John 3: 24
    We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.

    Recension, John, is a conceit and a deceit straight from the pit of homoplanet . In the words of Michael Nazir, “ repent.”

  223. Lezabella – you’re right about Ruth and Naomi. I had to study all the Bible at school, and my teacher, who was also a preacher, told me that the relationship between Ruth and Naomi was love.

    Interestingly, he also pointed out that the vow Ruth made to Naomi: ““Do not press me to leave you or to turn back from following you! Where you go, I will go; where you lodge I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die — there will I be buried. May the Lord do thus and so to me, and more as well, if even death parts me from you!” (Ruth 1:16-17)” is frequently read out in churches at (straight) weddings! That’s because it’s seen as a perfect declaration of spousal love….

  224. Personally, I never read anything more than a couple of sentences on these boards. That way you will avoid all the crap merchants.

    All the best.

  225. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 11:17am

    Iris, let us take it line upon line, word upon word with these two real – life situations.

    1. In May, 2008 it was reported in the press: “Two women have married each other in a civil partnership – more than 30 years after they became husband and wife. Martin Packer had to annul his marriage to Linda so he could be legally recognised as a woman after a sex change. This left both of them facing a financial blow as they would have had to forfeit certain tax and pension rights. The couple decided to take part in the civil ceremony, despite admitting they are no longer in a sexual relationship. Miss Martin, 60, said: “We are, and always have been, soul mates and best friends ever since 1977 when we got married.” But, to get my gender recognition certificate, we had to get our marriage annulled. “When that happened we would have been liable for inheritance tax but it also messed up life insurance and pension rights.”

    In the eyes of the law these two have been awarded a civil partnership as an expression of their progressive, 21st century, Metro, no limits, no boundaries, no categories, homoplanet love. Why? Because the wind is blowing in the sails of the LGBTs. There is nothing for which they demand that they are denied. Show the LGBT card and everyone falls over.

    2. In April 2008 it was reported: ‘Two elderly sisters have lost their battle to enjoy the same tax benefits as same-sex couples who register for civil partnerships.
    Joyce Burden, 90, and her sister Sybil, 82, have lived together in the same house for years, caring for older family members and now for one another.
    Concerned that when one of them dies the other will have to sell the house to cover inheritance duties, the sisters have campaigned for decades to have their relationship treated like a marriage for the purposes of tax law.
    The Civil Partnership Act 2004 allows same-sex couples to register as civil partners, exempting them from inheritance tax. However, the Act prevents partnerships from being registered between close relatives.

    These two are devoted sisters who were also devoted to older members of their family, in exactly the same way that Ruth and Naomi loved one another. If the story of Ruth had been about lesbian love why on earth did it not say so and instead concentrate on the clearly romantic and erotic love between Ruth and Boaz?

    One other thing complementary erotic love – that between a man and woman – is described in Ephesians chapter 5. It exhorts husbands to love their wives as “ Christ loved the church and gave himself up her, that he might sanctify having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that he might present the church to himself in splendour, without spot or wrinkle or any such blemish. Even so husbands should love their wives as their bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the Church, because we are members of his body. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.

    1 Peter : 7 says “ Likewise you husbands, live considerately with your wives, bestowing honour on the woman as the weaker sex, since you are joint heirs of the grace of life …”

    The picture here is of a husband protecting and nurturing his wife as the weaker partner.

    I don’t know if you have noticed , Iris, but so called homosexuals have no room for lesbians. The homosexuals are even more misogynistic than their so called heterosexual counterparts. Oh, yes they are useful as allies and for acting as reproductive factories for their sperm; but, beyond that, the homosexual has no use for any woman. A society run by homosexuals would look very much like Nazi Germany, where women played absolutely no part in the Third Reich, apart from producing blue- eyed, blond haired Aryans.

  226. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 11:32am

    David Skinner,
    I recon you are one of those blond haired Aryans because all your ramblings are resoundingly Anti-British, anti-people anti-love, anti-compassion, anti humane. Like I said before, you should feel more at home in a padded cell!

  227. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 11:53am

    PS. John Corvino PH D. Beats anything Skinner says, hands down!

  228. Quick reply, DS – I’m just about to go away for the weekend, but I’ll try to add more when I get back.

    You said: “These two are devoted sisters who were also devoted to older members of their family, in exactly the same way that Ruth and Naomi loved one another. If the story of Ruth had been about lesbian love why on earth did it not say so and instead concentrate on the clearly romantic and erotic love between Ruth and Boaz?”

    The reasons why Ruth married Boaz are debatable, but I understand it to be because the situation for an unmarried woman in those times was bad. You were supposed to return to your family for protection. Ruth and Naomi were vulnerable. In my opinion, Ruth married Boaz in order to provide security for herself and Naomi.

    When Ruth had a child what did the Bible report? Yep, I’m sure you know:

    “A son has been born to Naomi.” (Ruth 4:17)

    Why would they say that if not to recognise the love between Ruth and Naomi? Where else in the Bible is the birth of a child reported in such a way?

    You also didn’t reply to my bit about the use of Ruth’s vow in marriage services. Why would ‘sisterly love’ as you’re suggesting it was be quoted in a marriage service if not because it was equivalent to love between two spouses?

    Not that I think it was sisterly love anyway. I don’t need evidence about people’s sex lives to recognise love when I read about it – not that the Bible goes into detail like that anyway.

    You went on to say: “I don’t know if you have noticed , Iris, but so called homosexuals have no room for lesbians. The homosexuals are even more misogynistic than their so called heterosexual counterparts. Oh, yes they are useful as allies and for acting as reproductive factories for their sperm; but, beyond that, the homosexual has no use for any woman. A society run by homosexuals would look very much like Nazi Germany, where women played absolutely no part in the Third Reich, apart from producing blue- eyed, blond haired Aryans”

    An interesting mention of the Third Reich – who were happy to kill LGBT people… And what you say is simply untrue. Maybe some men do dislike lesbians, but, from the abuse I receive in the street, I think the majority of illwill is from heterosexual men who can’t bear to see women living an independent life without need of them.

    (Put some links for the two cases you quoted and I’ll read about them when I get back)

  229. John M.J.:

    Bonjour. As I’ve said, I can recognize genuine scholarship when I see it. I have done Catholic Biblical studies 101, 201, 301, 401, and beyond; and you, sir, are at a post-graduate level as is evident from your humility, a virtue that I have seen in countless biblical scholars over the years. Observation, not flattery.

    I don’t pretend to have mastered literary structure, but if you’ll bear with me…and I am very much aware that Skinner is hanging on my every word…

    To say that he urgently needs psychiatric evalution is the closest I can come to knowing, understanding, caring for and respecting Mr. Skinner (you will no doubt recognize Eric Fromm’s definition of love).

    Moreover, while being silly and uneducated is not a crime, would you not agree that the great library at Alexandria was razed to the ground by silly and uneducated men? A far-fetched example, I know, but I would rather not dwell on the pathological behaviour of well-meaning christians throughout the history of western civilization on such a beautiful Saturday morning. The fact remains that ignorance threatens our civilization.

    To speak in terms that are dear to you, and again in my opinion, Skinner has joined the ranks of those who believe ‘that they ought to rule the world even though everything in their heads is back to front; whose steel-toe-capped boot connected with Little Dog’s body quite violently and brutally’. In fact Sam-Sam, you can take Skinner’s opening comment in his post 224 as a kick from a bearded man wearing baggy clothes.

    However, I am neither a pscychoanalyst nor a biblical scholar, and my own dealings with fundamantalist, religious, anti-gay fanatics have led me to believe that they are beyond responding to kindness.

    Consequently, I am grateful to those among us who have successfully confronted this silly and uneducated man time and again, notably AdrianT whose post #215 wraps it up in a nutshell.

    Let me just add that your writing intriques me as I am somewhat familiar with the mentality of the ancient Greeks and the inhabitants of Mount Olympus.

    However, I have not been able to find a statement of purpose on the website, other than a pre-occupation with the values of western civilization. As a senior, I am foreover amazed at 21st century technology, and I intend to read more of your short stories.

    A la prochaine,

  230. Brian:

    Thank you so much for looking up John Corvino. When I saw his name on a PinkNews thread, I was both astonished and ecstatic. Now, you know why!

  231. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 12:46pm

    I Belive In God The Father Almighty and in His Son Jesus Christ Our Lord. I belive in the communion of Saints. The forgiveness of sins; The Resurrection of the body and Life everlasting.
    Goodness too, there is more goodness in people than Bad. I was Confirmed into the Church of England many moons ago. The son of a coal-miner. Men with coal-dust under their fingernails was a common sight when I was a Boy. During WW2, Mother told me she picked me up and took me outside into the back-yard. A bright sunny cloudless sky up above. It was July 1940, Mother looked up at the noise of the whining engines of the fighter planes trying to shoot each other down all her neighbours were there looking sky-ward. There must have been a perfect unreality about what those garden spectators were whitnessing at that moment.
    How many of you I wonder, was brought up in the ‘School of hard knocks’ as I was. This is why my faith in God is so un-shakable.

  232. Rick George 11 Jul 2009, 1:18pm

    David Skinner, here are quotes from your answer to my question about love:

    “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”

    “Love is not a feeling but an attitude that translates into sacrificial care, responsibility and respect for another. Always wanting the best for the other even at great cost to oneself.”

    “Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.”

    Ok, first of all I’d like to add a few ideas to what you’ve said there, David:

    “…Fear is the energy which contracts, closes down, draws in, runs, hides, hoards, harms.
    Love is the energy which expands, opens up, sends out, stays, reveals, shares, heals.
    Fear wraps our bodies in clothing, love allows us to stand naked. Fear clings to and clutches all that we have, love gives all that we have away. Fear holds close, love holds dear. Fear grasps, love lets go. Fear rankles, love soothes. Fear attacks, love amends. …”

    “…Love is the ultimate reality. It is the only. The all. The feeling of love is your experience of God.
    In highest truth, love is all there is, all there was, and all there ever will be…”

    Conversations With God, Book 1, Pg 19 and Pg 56

    Love is patient, love is kind.
    It does not envy.
    Love is never boastful, nor conceited, nor rude;
    It is not self-seeking, nor easily angered.
    It keeps no record of wrongdoing.
    It does not delight in evil,
    But rejoices in the truth.
    It always protects, trusts, hopes, and preserves.
    There is nothing love cannot face;
    There is no limit to its faith, hope, and endurance.
    In a word, there are three things that last forever:
    Faith, hope, and love;
    But the greatest of them all is love.

    ~1 Corinthians 13:4-7

    Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.

    ~Corinthians 13:7-8

    “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear … ”

    ~1 John 4:18~

    “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God and knoweth God … Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.”

    ~1 John 4:7, 11-12~

    “…Love is that which is unlimited. There is no beginning and no end to it. No before and no after. Love always was, always is, and always will be.
    So love is also always. It’s the always reality.
    Now we get back to another word we used before – freedom. For if love is unlimited, and always, then love is…free. Love is that which is perfectly free.
    Now in the human reality, you will find that you always seek to love, and to be loved. You will find that you will always yearn for that love to be unlimited. And you will find that you will always wish you could be free to express it.
    You will seek freedom, ulimitedness, and eternality in every experience of love. You may not always get it, but that is what you will seek. You will seek this because this is what love IS, and at some deep place you KNOW that, because you ARE love, and through the expression of love you are seeking to know and to experience Who and What You Are.
    You are life expressing life, love expressing love, God expressing God.
    All these words are therefore synonymous. Think of them as the same thing:

    God
    Life
    Love
    Unlimited
    Eternal
    Free

    Anything which is not one of these things is NOT any of these things…”

    Conversations With God, Book 3, Pg 206-207.

    OK, now, all that having been said, coming back to the topic at hand, lets call it the ‘Bish Bash’, and given your, I feel very accurate, assertion that God is love, what are your thoughts on the points put forward in the quotes I’ve used in relation to your hostility, fear, prejudice, intolerance, etc, towards gay people, life, equality, etc?

    Could you also address some of the other issues and questions Ive raised in comments 207 & 211. Thank you.

  233. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 1:55pm

    At this rate this thread should be Experiacing the whole twenty six books of the Bible?

    When fishes flew and forrests walked and Figs grew amongst thorn. Some moment when the Moon was Blood then surely I was born.
    With monstrous head and sickening cry
    and ears like heron wings,
    The Devils walking parody on all four-footed things.
    The tattered outlaw of the earth, of anciant, crooked will.
    Starve, scurge, deride me. I am Dumb, for I keep my secret still.
    Fools! for I also had my hour.
    One far, fierce hour and sweet.
    There was a shout about my ears and Palms before my Feet.

  234. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 2:15pm

    A prayer for all who take up issue with each other on this thread!

    The Un-Godly seek to smite the just in this debating forum. The words of some are unrighteous and full of deceit. With you Lord is the Well of Life. So Lord, Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness flow like an ever-lasting stream–Amen.

  235. Mihangel apYrs 11 Jul 2009, 3:43pm

    Skinner has brought up the “poor old sisters, one whom will be made homeless when the other dies” red herring that Tebbit raised when he was trying to beat the CP bill.

    Well hard cases make poor law, as they say; that is the extreme cases shouldn’t lead to changes on the law.

    It is interesting that the noble lord hasn’t brought forward a bill to right this situation (rather like the French PACS). Oh but of course, he was using it as a political device to scupper a bill he didn’t like, rather than to help those he thought of as hard done by.

  236. Rick George 11 Jul 2009, 8:11pm

    Brian Burton, forgive me if my understanding is inaccurate, doesnt smite mean or imply killing? if so, what are you talking about in comment 236? Could you respond in your own words please, rather than the idioms of a culture & time your werent born or socialised in? Thank you.

  237. Brian Burton 11 Jul 2009, 8:42pm

    Rick George,
    I was speaking in terms sutable to the occasion. It was a prayer I devised for you and your adversary Skinner. Apart from that Mr. George, I do not feel answerable to you.

  238. Rick George 11 Jul 2009, 8:45pm

    So you disagree with some of the opinions expressed here, well thats fine, thats ok. Lets hear why you disagree, and discuss and explore that. Why bring in all these apocolyptic riddles and mythologies into the debate? Are they actually relevant to the issue at hand? That being that a senior religious figure has expressed sentiments which exclude people and give credence to prejudice and discrimination, something of a contradiction in my view. If ever there was a person who should know better, surely its him?

  239. Rick George 11 Jul 2009, 9:00pm

    Brian, oh ok, so now your saying the words of the bible are full of deceit? Im having a perfectly civilised and mature intelectual and theological dialogue with David Skinner. Theres no question of any emnity on my part whatsoever. I have not expressed any hostility or rudeness towards Mr Skinner, and I have presented my views clearly and honestly so I dont see how you have any cause to accuse me of deceit Mr Burton. If you disagree with what I say, which is perfectly ok, then please feel free to present your reasoning and argument. No your not accountable to me and im not requesting that you are. So please, join the discussion. Or dont. The decision is entirely yours.

  240. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 9:01pm

    Iris, I trust you got back safely, referring to your statement at (230)

    The argument for Ruth and Naomi being lesbian lovers:

    One such gay apologist says that “the climax of Ruth’s protestation comes not with her taking Naomi’s God to be her God–that seems to follow naturally after taking Naomi’s people as her people–but with her declaration that this is forever. Ruth’s words go beyond the familiar (“’till death do you part”) of the marriage service. She and Naomi will not be parted even in death…Ruth’s commitment is total, not just in intensity but also in duration.”

    This ignores fact that whole families, parents and children, brothers and sisters are still, today, buried together in family vaults, especially in Roman Catholic countries. Does this indicate incestuous relations? Indeed in a church near to me there is an early 17th century tomb with two bearded gentlemen lying atop of it, hand in hand. “ Oh What !!” I thought – until I discovered that they were older and younger brother vicars, who, I presume, had remained single.

    The next piece of evidence submitted is the statement in Ruth 4; 14-17 that says the women of the neighbourhood said, “Naomi has a son.” They named him Obed; he became the father of Jesse, the father of David.

    The gay apologist gives this as more evidence of a lesbian relationship:
    “The women praise Ruth to Naomi, calling her better than seven sons. She has provided Naomi with security for the rest of her life: she has provided Naomi with a son. How can that be? Genetically, he is Boaz’ son. Legally, he is the son of Ruth’s dead husband. Physically, he is Ruth’s son. But the women, recognizing the relationship between Ruth and Naomi, say that he is Naomi‘s son.”

    When I was ten my mother had my younger brother and I remember running into my class at school, shouting, “I have had baby.” Needless to say everyone found this humorous but no one dreamt that I had been having a sexual relationship with my mother!
    You ask “Where else in the Bible is the birth of a child reported in such a way?”
    Isaiah 9 verse 6 says, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulder, and name will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God…”

    Indeed this is highlights the argument frequently heard today about the role of sex in marriage. There are many who say that marriage has nothing to do with raising a family, because there are many married couples who either have no intention, or are unable to have children. This misses the point that when a child is born it immediately changes the personal relationship of all members that extended family. Suddenly, whether single of married, people become uncles and aunts, cousins, nephews, grandparents and grandparents. Bonds and ties are developed, thus making a co-hesive, strong society. We all take responsibility of the child.
    Dietrich Bonhoeffer, sitting in a Nazi prison cell, once wrote a wedding sermon for a niece who was about to be married. In it he said, “Marriage is more than your love for each other. It has a higher dignity and power, for it is God’s holy ordinance, through which he wills to perpetuate the human race till the end of time. In your love you see only your two selves in the world, but in marriage you are a link in the chain of generations, which God causes to come and to pass away to his glory, and calls into his kingdom. In your love you see only the heaven of your happiness, but in marriage you are placed at a post of responsibility towards the world and mankind. Your love is your own private possession, but marriage is more than something personal – it is a status an office.”

    But talking of love, a terribly abused and distorted word, these days, Gordon Brown said we can’t legislate for love. What does he mean by it? If he means that no one has the power to legislate against anyone experiencing deep and personal relationships, whether this be with God, a family member, neighbour or friend, he is saying nothing more than that truly personal relational ships transcend space and time, are not conditional, and are not exclusive to those in sexual relationships. They are available to all. Jesus Christ, a celibate man, bore witness to the truth that love is experiencing the source of all love, that of God (“This is my Son in whom I am well pleased”) and then having the freedom and power to transmit that same love to the unlovely and undeserving – all of us.

    The gay lobby are extremely selective when and when not to include sex in a relationship. When they want to claim single, historical personalities (who can hardly speak to defend themselves) as gay trophies, they will raise the sexual temperature. Sharon Ferguson of the Lesbian Gay and Christian Ministries would question the celibacy of any single person; Jesus Christ, St Paul, St Francis of Assisi and Mother Theresa have all, no doubt, been claimed by the gays to have been in homosexual and lesbian relationships. – even though all of these denounced adultery. But the LGBTs also know when to dampen down the sexual element. When people question the validity of an already existent homosexual partnership such as that between Jeffrey John, the Dean of St. Albans and his long term lover, Grant Holmes, we are assured that this is a purely platonic relationship. Indeed this was a “marriage” made in heaven, more pure and spiritual than that achieved by husband and wife couples, that sullies itself with sex. How perverse.

  241. Good-day Mr. George:

    Good to see you’re still with us.

    Of course, I too see a similarity between the views and comments of the Bishop of Rochester and our own D. Skinner.

    As for Brian Burton, whose adherence to a reformed church of England has brought much meaning and happiness to his life, I can assure you that the thought of harming you in any way would never cross his mind.

    However, and if you’ll excuse my interference in your dialogue with our adversary, I suggest you re-read AdrianT’s post #215 and take note of his adjectives. Give us the benefit of the doubt for another little while, OK.

    You certainly mean well, there is no doubt about that in my mind (any more), but please believe me when I say that you are being targetted by a ruthless fanatic, not in spite of your honest intellectual approach, but because of it.

    None of my business, but please do not allow Skinner to deceive you into believing that he is interested in a word you write.
    The fact that you are posting on a gay website places you in his line of fire, and you can take that any way you like.

    I do not mean to discourage you. A bit of prudence, that’s all.

    x

  242. david skinner 11 Jul 2009, 10:02pm

    Rick George, I must leave all this now, but with reference to your questions (and forgive me if I have misunderstood you) but you seem to be suggesting that we are God, that it is we who decide what is love and what isn’t. In your list from Corinthians 13, I hope that you notice that is says at (6) “(Love) does not delight in evil, But rejoices in the truth”

    1. Love is patient, love is kind.
    2. It does not envy.
    3. Love is never boastful, nor conceited, nor rude;
    4. It is not self-seeking, nor easily angered.
    5. It keeps no record of wrongdoing.
    6. It does not delight in evil, But rejoices in the truth.
    7. It always protects, trusts, hopes, and preserves.
    8. There is nothing love cannot face;
    9. There is no limit to its faith, hope, and endurance.
    10. In a word, there are three things that last forever: Faith, hope, and love;
    But the greatest of them all is love

    In other words we are to hate evil.
    The whole palette of emotions- love, hate, anger, peace, fear, joy, desolation – that are displayed in human nature are all necessary for our survival, like the notes on a piano, all are equally essential. For a government to eliminate feelings of antipathy or hatred in order to produce a dehumanised society that runs like a well- oiled – piece of machinery, sounds ominously like the film “Clock work Orange,” where the behaviour of citizens can be controlled by drugs or brain surgery. This is surely pure evolutionary humanism.

    Revelations2 : 6 But you have this in your favour: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, (who practised unrestrained sexual perversions) which I also hate.

    1 Corinthians 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,( homosexuals)

    Proverbs 6:16 There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.

    Romans 12 : Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

    As for fear, Jesus Christ said in Luke 12 :5 “But I warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed , has power to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear him!
    Psalm 111:10, says “ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

    As for love the Bible tells us that our best efforts at loving are but filthy rags.
    We can only claim the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Only by wearing the clean robes that He gives us are we accepted into the presence of the Father. There is nothing we can do to earn these. They are costly beyond all conception. They were paid for by the blood of Jesus. All we can do is gratefully accept them and put them on. But for us to imagine that if we somehow “ image the love of Christ” then this will be OK , this then is ludicrous.

    Finally on the subject of organised religion; yes the Church as a political institution is in a sorry state. However, the truth is that as soon as one becomes a Christian one automatically become a part of the body of Jesus Christ. It never ceases to amaze how the local church is made up of so many diverse people, who in the normal course of life would never cross one another’s path. The Church is going through a great deal of pain at the moment, but much more is on the way. It needs refining and purifying, which can mean only one thing – persecution.

  243. Rick George 11 Jul 2009, 11:40pm

    I think the sentiments I have expressed speak for themselves. 104, 118, 120, 121, 122, 128, 138, 139, 143, 148, 150, 154, 166, 176, 177, 197, 207, 211, 234. I do not believe that I can credibly be accused of engaging in deception, or advocating or promoting injustice of any kind, Mr Burton.
    I think I have said more than enough to make my position clear. I will add nothing further other than to recommend the material I have outlined in response 128 – here it is again:

    The film What The Bleep Do We Know & the books which examine in more detail the ideas discussed and explored in the film. These include:

    Beyond The Bleep by Alexandra Bruce
    &
    What The Bleep Do We Know – Discovering The Endless Possibilities For Altering Your Everyday Reality by William Arntz, Betsy Chasse and Mark Vicente.

    The Field by Lynne Mctaggart.

    Science And The Akashic Field by Ervin Laszlo

    Science and the Reenchantment of the Cosmos by Ervin Laszlo

    Cosmos – A Co-creators Guide To The Whole World by Ervin Laszlo & Jude Currivan

    The Divine Matrix: Bridging Time, Space, Miracles, and Belief by Gregg Braden.

    The God Code by Gregg Braden.

    Cosmic Consciousness by Richard Maurice Bucke, MD
    and Cosmic Consciousness Revisited by Robert M. May

    The Quantum Self by Danah Zohar

    God’s Whisper, Creations Thunder – Echose of Ultimate Reality In the New Physics by Brian Hines.

    and also the following from comment 150:

    From Queer to Eternity: Spirituality in the Lives of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual People by Peter Sweasey.

    I would say the following are also of interest and relevance to the issues raised in this dialogue:

    By John Shelby Spong…

    Why Christianity Must Change Or Die

    Rescuing The Bible From Fundamentalism

    By Timothy Freke & Peter Gandy…

    The Jesus Mysteries

    Jesus & The Goddess

    The Laughing Jesus

    By Neale Donald Walsch…

    Conversations With God – Book 1,2 &3

    Friendship With God

    Communion With God

    New Revelations

    Tommorows God

    What God Wants

    Home With God

    Questions & Answers On Conversations With God

    By Sam Harris…

    The End Of Faith

    Letter To A Christian Nation

    By Gus DiZerega,PH.D…

    Pagans & Christians

    This list is by no means exhaustive. Im sure theres loads more.

    Love and Light to you all x Rick aka 21stCenturySpirituality.

  244. Rick:

    I did get in touch with you (21st Century Spirituality) at one point, using my nickname profile.

    Thanks for your visit; please don’t be a stranger.

    x

  245. Mr Skinner, at 242, wrote:

    “This ignores the fact that whole families, parents and children, brothers and sisters are still, today, buried together in family vaults, especially in Roman Catholic countries. Does this indicate incestuous relations?”

    Why on earth he thinks that the intelligent people at this site would fall for such an idiotic argument is quite beyond me. The comparison which he is attempting to make is akin to comparing apples to concrete bridges – of absolutely no relevance at all to the argument in hand and having no meaning in the context of that argument, either. No one, excepting Mr. Skinner, could have dreamt up the comparison in the first place and no-one but Mr. Skinner could have had the gall to try to use it as an argument. It’s just meaningless drivel and Mr. Skinner is clutching at straws in order to support his own hatreds.

    In 224 he further states:

    “Recension, John, is a conceit and a deceit straight from the pit of homoplanet” (whatever ‘homoplanet’ might mean: it is not, as far as I am aware at the moment, a proper English word so I must presume it is a word meant to denigrate the opinions of gay people, coined by Mr. Skinner and his circle for that exclusive purpose – but I may have to stand corrected on that if any of you can offer me a working definition and an etymology).

    He belittles recension whilst relying upon recension as supporting what he thinks of as the Bible. It is only by scholarly recension of the ancient texts – incomplete and riddled by contradictions – that our modern Bibles have been arrived at. Almost all reputable Biblical scholars of my acquaintance agree that there is no known method of arriving at an accurate translation of those ancient texts without reference to Biblical Archaeology and without reference to what can be gleaned from other surviving (non-Biblical) texts in respect of the linguistic usages prevalent at the times in which the ancient Biblical texts were first written down. Further, almost all scholars agree that large parts of the Bible may have been mistranslated and do not mean, in our modern texts, exactly what the authors of the ancient texts meant when they wrote those words.

    That, of course, is the weakness of, and the fatal flaw in, fundamentalist and Biblical literalist belief. It is far better, in my opinion, to rely upon the Spirit and upon the universal love which Christ preached. Of course, for Mr. Skinner and his ilk, Christ did not preach universal love but a limited love – a love which, in their opinion (an opinion based upon texts which may be faulty) specifically excludes some people (notably, in their case, gay people).

    By the way, this problem is common to all religions which have ancient texts as part of, or the whole of, their Scripture(s) and all mainstream versions of religions in such a position acknowledge the problem. That Mr. Skinner does not so acknowledge places him, I think, within the tiny minority of Christians who have latched onto one particular set of translations and decided that they must be completely correct for no other reason than the translations that they have decided to adhere to suit their own preconceived prejudices.

    He simply never addressed my point about the severe difficulties in translating Solomon nor did he address my point about the complications of translating New Testament Greek into modern English. Instead he simply decided to castigate the Science of recension because its results often do not suit his notions of what he thinks of the ‘final’ version of the Bible. That is not a valid academic argument and, if he accepted recension (not that he gives any good sound reasons for rejecting the notion, he merely offers insult in the hope that such will suffice as a reply), such acceptance would often require him to make difficult choices about faith, which I don’t think that he can do. Here he demonstrates that his arguing style is just assertion and insult unsupported by any evidence whatsoever.

    Recension, as a tool of understanding, has been around for almost as long as human beings have been writing things down. It is, today, a highly scientific discipline which attempts to discover – often with limited success, as I would be the first to admit – precisely what the authors of ancient texts were saying. What Mr. Skinner demonstrates, in spades, is that he has no interest in determining what the authors of the Bible were actually saying, he is merely interested in believing in, and asserting as true, what he wants to believe they were saying.

    He doesn’t want the Bible to be the complicated, messy, badly translated (almost impossible to translate accurately) thing that it actually is because it’s his rule book and that, I think, should tell all of us something about Mr. Skinner, namely that he needs rules and he needs hate objects – people to fear – because his interpretation of one particular interpretation of one particular translation of our ancient Christian texts tells him, so he thinks, that that is the correct thing to do.

    That is, in my opinion, the same mindset which spawned the Klan and other vicious forms of racism – not that I mean for one instant to suggest that Mr. Skinner is a racist (I’m sure and certain that he is not a racist), merely that his mindset reminds me strongly of the mindset which gave rise to such viciousness as racism. There seems to me, but I could be wrong, to be to be some similarity of attitude. He, as the Klan members did, needs to feel superior to someone so he, because of his type of Biblical literalist beliefs, picks on gay people as being inferior to him.

    He is caught in the vicious fundamentalist and literalist loop – ‘I’m correct because I believe I’m correct and because I believe I’m correct then I must be correct’ – nothing we can say can break that vicious loop in his mind so all we can do is attempt to limit the harm he can do here at this site, to constructively pity him and to pray for him.

  246. Brian Burton 12 Jul 2009, 5:56am

    Ric George,
    Just to say that I think you are a man of the upmost integrity. If I have given you the wrong impression then please accept my profound apologies. Filling in earlier, in between yourself and D.Skinner. Was a vain attempt at a little light-hearted banter. It seems to have back-fired in your case! D. Skinner has caught you on a hook and now you are hand feeding him. I blame you not Ric. The devious Troll Skinner is the villan of the peace. I’m sure he is an escapee from a ‘Secure Institution’ where a padded cell re-awaits him on his return. So, Since you are one of the ‘Good Guys’….Take it easy!

  247. Mr. Skinner’s use of Revelations, Chapter 2, Verse 6, at 244, is extremely suspect. He must know that there is absolutely no universally agreed upon translation of this verse. In fact, most modern scholars see this condemnation of Nicolaism as a condemnation of precisely the form of fundamentalist, literalist Protestantism which Mr. Skinner adheres to – in other words, as a condemnation of Antinomianism (the idea that salvation is by Faith alone and without paying attention to good works, charity, love and the intent of the actions of an individual).

    The difficulties of arriving at a precise and meaningful translation of this verse in the Bible – and others like it – are so great as to be impossible, so people like Mr. Skinner can twist its meaning to suit themselves. Then, of course, so can I do!

  248. Oh, and all the other verses which he uses to back up his argument are equally as weak. Translation into modern English of the languages and idioms of the Old Testament, The Apocrypha and the New Testament is notoriously difficult and no scholar, and certainly not me, a mere part-time scholar who took his degree over forty years ago, would dare to make the assertions about meaning, and the correctness of such meanings, that Mr. Skinner does.

    There is no question in my mind but that Mr. Skinner is a believer in the erroneous sola fide heretical doctrine (operative salvation simple because one believes in the Risen Christ regardless of how one has acted in life) given the quotes which he lists at 244 – and there, of course, he falls into heresy: the very thing which he often accuses us of lapsing into. Poor man! Pray for him, please, for obviously he needs our prayers quite desperately.

  249. Dear Bentham (at 231),

    However, I have not been able to find a statement of purpose on the website, other than a pre-occupation with the values of western civilization.

    Exactly! Well done! Got it in one!

    And those values are?

    (Hint: Freedom, Free speech, Rights of assembly, Universal democracy etc, etc, etc.)

    Meet me there when you can and thanks for your kind comments about the story about Little Dog. Glad you ‘enjoyed’ it.

  250. Bentham (at 231),

    Substantively, I think agree with you at 231. I may quibble on details but I think you are correct in most of what you assert.

    Certainly Adrian T. is a good mind and a great contributor here. I talked to him, if memory serves me aright, on another thread here a few weeks ago and he is good. It was only in the latter half of this thread that I began to realise how hate-filled, how full of bile, Mr. Skinner actually is. I think that I must have led a very sheltered life for I don’t think that I have ever run up against someone quite as capable as Mr. Skinner of taking absolutely irrelevant points and twisting them in such ways as to make them sound, spuriously of course, relevant.

    One cannot possibly take the time to address every one of his erroneous, twisted and irrelevant points but, my goodness, he’s really good at twisting an argument and contorting logic. If I was running for elected office I really would want him on my team! Well, so long as he controlled his temper, that is!

    Email me if you want to – if you’ve found out how.

    Yours,

    John M.J.

  251. david skinner 12 Jul 2009, 8:33am

    John, Frankly I had never heard of the word “recension” until you posted it. Obviously it means a great deal to you ; I lose count of the number of times you have used the word- along with your ad hominems in place of argument. However the question must surely occur to the bystander – that is if there is anyone still sad enough to be hanging around – if the Bible is so opaque, riddled with errors and contradictions, and if it requires the amount of erudition and scholarship that only exalted souls like yourself have acquired, why on earth would anyone bother to read it? If the Bible is so incomprehensible why on earth does it remain the most widely read book in the world – from nuclear physicists and mathematicians to children and half wits like myself; from someone living in NewYork to someone living in the heart of the Amazonian forest.

    Why on earth, indeed, would Jesus Christ, Stephen, Peter, Paul and the rest of the apostles continue to quote it, in the new Testament, word for word, if it was shot ?
    In Luke 24 there is the description of the risen Lord meeting two of the disciples on the road to Emmaus who were perplexed and bewildered concerning the events surrounding the crucifixion. He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.”

    Maybe John if you had been there, on the road to Emmaus, you could have given them a helping hand.

    Maybe John you need to rewrite it, telling us what it really says. I wonder how many copies of it would sell? Not one.

  252. Over 250 comments on this..!
    I have read some but most are above me.
    Quentin Crisp was right…”Religion is for priests..”
    Keith.

  253. Hello Keith:

    Where have you been? Listening to every word behind the scene, have we? Hanging around the sacristie during the ceromony, have we? Trying on the bishop’s robes, have we? Full length mirror, I hope. Find any lace to your liking? Jewel-incrusted pectorial cross, anyone?

    Remember those missals with the 14-K Gold edges and the solid leather bindings? Didn’t they give you the feeling of holding the Truth in your hands, ta-raa.

    I daresay, John M.J.’s comments could just as easily have been addressed to the Bish of Rod-chester, although his excellency is not a cut & paste artist like our own Skynner, I mean Sceener, or is that Scheinerr like in error. It is a pity, really is. There is so much professional help available to our troubled population, and he still has miles to go before he sleeps. It could be a pleasnat journey if only he could realize that breaking out of his prison is as easy as smiling at someone and accepting a smile in return.

    In the meantime, if we have learned anything from these comments, including those of Rick George’s, it is certainly that members of our team were right all along: there is no reasoning with D. Skinner. Pity, and now we know why he picks on the most wholesome bunch of LGBT’s in the entire nation, and that includes you, doll.

    ‘You musta been a beautiful ba-a-by…’

    By the way, Did you do a web search for John Corvino? Check out his video clips. Eddy has left the address on the tread concerned gay stereotypes.

    Not a word of this has gone over your head, you lovable scoundle.

    Oh yeah, Quentin was right about a lot of things, unlike most civil servant servants. As I recall, he was particularly fond of New York City where his eccentricities blended right in with the Village crowd.

  254. #255….Is it really as many comments as that?!
    BENTHAM.

    Helloooo…!
    Well, I have been here but the comments are way above my head and so I defer to those who make them; I am alright for the ‘nonsense contribution’ and that’s as far as I go. After all, no good asking the pesnuts what they thought of the ‘wine and truffles… and didn’t you think the pheasant was a trifle over done’ …if said pesnut has only ever had a bacon and chip butty and a cuppa with an Eccles cake fer afters.

    That’s me; basic.

    I only shines with all the brilliance of an exploding star (or should that be spew forth like a slaggy old volcano…) when old feelings are stirred. These are that ‘homosexuality is a curable..’ and bla bla bla… the type of thing I had ringing in my ears the day I left the religious life, 50 years ago. In those fifty years we have got to the moon, got the Internet, the human genome, cures for all manner of previously mortal illnesses and yet some are still reading old spell books about the deepest subject ever, human sexuality. We have had these spell book, spellbound readers on here, in a steady stream, since I first started looking on these pages around March and dare I say…’contributing’..
    It started with a Dr. Narcosi at that time; has progressed through Mamma Fatslob and her amazing, demon defying gonzos in Connecticut; now some 250-odd comments (!) about the Bishop of Rochester and his nonsense; and oh! and we musn’t forget the fuzz-faced, yoghurt merchant and Jaffa lookey-likey, who someone, I think YOU BENTHAM, YOU NAUGHTY EX-TRAPPIST, thought was enjoying himself on a butt-plug.
    How un-Christian of you to think that! How very un-Christian of you to even KNOW what a butt-plug is, never mind owt else.
    I only get wound up with these dollopers who think it (homosexuality) is repentable and changeable, chooseable, transferable, teachable, learnable, catch-off-toilet-seatsable and yes, some even think it enbloodyforceable.
    I cannot begin to argue with the Skinners or the RealityChecks of this world and wouldn’t want to; too busy seein’ wot’s in t’ fridge.
    And I am left gaping at wonderful JohnM.J’s. papers.
    I don’t need to argue; don’t need to learn; I know me and homosexuality as it touches me… and all there is on that score and am as fully accepting of it now at 70, as any daffodil is that it is yellow… and the churches, from the Catholic Church down, can all get lost; they know nowt.
    I can shout louder than any of them on the curablity of homosexuality; a one syllable shout, 50 years old, which goes:-
    No no no no no no no no no no no no no no noo noo nooo nooo nooo noooo noooo noooooooooooo.!

    Now where’s that dressing up box …
    Keith.

  255. Rev Paul Sandford 12 Jul 2009, 3:17pm

    I agree with Peter Tatchell to call on the Bishop to “repent his homophobia.”

  256. Goodness what a lot of hot air has been expelled here…and rather lost the thread of the argument in the process. Rather pointless name-calling and counter-arguements are a waste of time when confronting people who are literal believers in the words of books like the bible. There is no reasoned discourse behind their belief…it is blind trust in the so-called Word. Anyone looking to change the mind of such a believer is simply dashing their head against a rock (albeit probably a fake rock!)

    Religion may be fine for those who have little or no self belief, but the problem often lies in what is done in the name of religion. Christianity has always held the moral high ground, and sought to condemn those ideas and beliefs that do not confirm to whatever may be the current interpretation of what is contained within the bible;(and much the same is true of Islam today). Passages are selectively quoted from the bible (or koran) rather like a manual for fixing a car …..simply there can be no other way to view of the world and how to make it ‘work’.

    I fear that those who predict a gathering backlash from fundamentalists all over the world may well be right, and there is a certain irony that it comes most stridently from African churches. Anyone who thinks the day is won for gay people’s rights needs to realise that our lifestyle and opinions remain under threat and it is up to us to remain vigilant and make our voice heard whenever social injustice, bigotry, lies and intolerance surface. The bishop’s silly comments do little to help the view of the contemporary church as one of a loving community; accepting and respectful of humanity.

    Alas, if there is a God, I’m afraid he is served by a lot of very silly small minded people. I doubt He’s over joyed by the appearance on his beautiful planet (after 4 and half billion years) of a lot of sychophantic bigots pouring out hatred in His name!

    The churches of this country will continue to empty for all the right reasons (though they often fill for all the wrong ones too).

    Kit

  257. #258
    KIT

    “Gathering backlash…”

    Just what I said in another time and another place, Kit.
    The pendulum is swinging.
    There are too many other things up-ended in the world and these people will take it as a sign of the displeasure of God at the antics of His children and WE will be the first with our heads on t’ block.

    Shout ‘no’ and keep shoutin’ it, lads and lasses; you’ll need to.

    Keith.

  258. There’s talk of a backlash and there’s talk of a new faculty in Gay Studies at Harvard.

    As Abrahamic religions lose their stanglehold on secular society, humanity will be focusing on plantery problems, notably the ecology, and I expect the most brilliant minds to guide, inspire and motivate us to survive will come from the LGBT community.

    Call me a dreamer, but there are as many reasons to be positive as there are to be negative.

    Oh and Keith, are these your mother’s gold brocade curtains that you were using in your Talullah Bankhead number? Yes, we have no bananas, we have no bananas today. Olay!

    And just so noboby can say that i can’t address the issue at hand – BIS-S-S-SH.

  259. Perhaps it is worth remembering that the Bishop of Rochester is retiring early in September to go and work with christians is muslim dominated areas (wherever they are?)…hohum, that should be fun for all concerned.

    Yes, they are reasons to be positive I agree.

  260. Yes, Bentham the very same curtains…(I think you liked that one originally, didn’t you…hahaha.!)
    There were enough brocade for me, Tallulah Bankhead and Hormone Gingold…what a trio…
    ‘Bye for now….until the next loo-loo on here with a ‘cure’…when doubtless, I shall e-rupt again,

    Keith.

  261. Yo David Skinner, i could regurgutate thousands of words, quoting many sources, including both religious and scientific quotations regarding homosexuality but having spent enough time reading these boards it is pretty clear you are still the same twisted closet troll as always, incapable of changing no matter what is said to you, you feel compelled to lurk where no one cares what you have to say, compelled by that deep seated voice in the back of your mind that is screaming for even the remotest connection to the gay community. only got one bit of advice for you man… go and find the biggest cock you can and sit on it. have fun, much love.

  262. Brian Burton 12 Jul 2009, 7:26pm

    BISHOP NAZIE-ALI. Seeking what with Homophobic statments? Ordering the Gay community to Repent!
    Dogma without literature is not good for anyone! People who repent should always do it lovingly and share that love afterwards with other repentees. The point is, Bishops are not capable of repenting of their ingrained views. A Bishop, even at eighty, will say what he was told to say as a school-boy. as a consequence, he will photogragh smiling for the Media. As for belifes, he will belive anything except in human kind. Beauty can be superficial and that may be so, but, it’s not as superficial as thought. The Bishopp’s comming old age is fraught with contraversy, indeed it is.

  263. Any HORNYFOLOGISTS among you..?
    Is that a new bird in the piccy?
    The purple-throated tit…?
    Besos..
    K

  264. Brian Burton 12 Jul 2009, 11:29pm

    Keith, Smakky bum for been so roood!

  265. I wonder if this fred will reach 300..?
    It will if I keep makin’ inane remarks…so I’ll shut it…for now.
    Er..don’t, Brian, I might like it..
    K

  266. The last dying breath of a fading mythology, going the way of Zeus and all the other past mythological belief systems founded in feelings, not in facts.

    Gay occurs in thousands of animal species, Religion only occurs in one bigoted species… Man! What is abnormal again?

  267. Brian Burton 13 Jul 2009, 7:37am

    Be thou removed and be thou casteth into the sea. This is when Jesus was talking about Mountains. Would we Chistians ask the same of the Bisop? He is more to be pitied than blamed and so, I think not. Do not forget boys and girls, there are Chistians and Christians. Remember what Love is. It should be patient and kind and dose not keep tally of wrongs…..Do onto others only as you would do onto yourself. I have seen pictures of Earth taken from the Space Station up there. The earth looks bautiful. People are too small to be seen. It showed me how insignificant we are in the great scheme of things.

  268. David Skinner-

    “Lezebella, Looking at the story as whole, there is no clue whatsoever of a such a lesbian relationship. Neither is there anywhere else in the Bible, any reference to Ruth that would lead one to conclusion that she was a lesbian. Apart from the translation of this one word, upon which you hang your whole argument please show me any other indication either in the story or other parts of the Bible that would support your theory.”

    The verse which I have already stated “Do not press me to leave you or to turn back from following you! Where you go, I will go; where you lodge I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die — there will I be buried. May the Lord do thus and so to me, and more as well, if even death parts me from you!” – Ruth 1:16-17. This is not a platonic thing to say, even in the olden days, the paragraph itself is evidence enough. There is no interpretation needed here, it is obvious what us being conveyed even in the archaic style of writing.

    The word “dabaq” (Genesis 2:24, Ruth 1:14) – is used to describe Ruth’s feelings for Naomi, a feeling spouses are supposed to feel toward each other, another translation of this word which proves my argument even more is Genesis 2:24: Becoming one flesh: The Bible discusses a man “cleaving unto his wife.” “Cleave” is a translation of the Hebrew word “dabaq” which means to make a permanent alliance with (Joshua 23:12, Ruth 1:14, 2 Samuel 20:2).

    Therefore, I am correct in my assertion that Ruth and Naomi were lesbians. The Bible’s use of the word ‘dabaq’ meaning ‘a husband to a wife’ proves this. Iris’s statement that Ruth’s verse is often used as a wedding vow (in church!) serves only to prove my view as correct. Thanks Iris :)

    “I don’t know if you have noticed , Iris, but so called homosexuals have no room for lesbians. The homosexuals are even more misogynistic than their so called heterosexual counterparts. Oh, yes they are useful as allies and for acting as reproductive factories for their sperm; but, beyond that, the homosexual has no use for any woman. A society run by homosexuals would look very much like Nazi Germany, where women played absolutely no part in the Third Reich, apart from producing blue- eyed, blond haired Aryans.”

    Hmmm, I do not agree either David. My experiences co-inside with what Iris described: any abuse I have recieved has been from heterosexual males who despise the fact that lesbians are not under their control and/or dominated by men. Any negative experience I have had with a gay male has been due to the fact that he was a nasty person, and nothing to do with me being a lesbian .

    As for your view that women played absoloutely no part in the Third Reich, you are also incorrect. Any anti-women laws were enacted or conjured up by Hitler or Himmler-both heterosexual males.

    Irma Grese (22 at the time of death) and several other females were high ranking SS guards who ‘worked’ at Ravensbruck and Bergen-Belsen; Irma Grese was then transferred as a female guard to Auschwitz and by the end of that year was Senior Supervisor, the second highest ranking woman at the camp, in charge of around 30,000 Jewish female prisoners. Grese was hung at the age of 22 for her crimes and sang SS songs loudly into the night, hours before she hang.

    The League Of German Girls also conflicts with your view of women in Nazi Germany, these girls were taught skills for careers, even if emphasis was meant to be on motherhood it wasn’t. Like some boys of the male Hitler Youth, these girls joined with the Volkssturm (the last ditch defense) in Berlin and other cities in fighting the invading Allied armies. These were girls aged 14-21. A former BDM (Bund Deutscher Mädel) leader, Ilse Hirsch was part of the team who assassinated Franz Oppenhoff, the Allied-appointed mayor of Aachen, in March 1945

    Women popping out blue-eyed Aryan babies, which you refer to, was the ‘Spring For Life’ SS programme, wherein male SS soldiers were allowed to impregnate single German girls in preperation for Lebensraum (living space, specifically in the in Russia). This was another heterosexual male concept.

    Women were not merely housewives in the Third Reich, and even if they were intended to be; this was a heterosexual male ideal forced upon them, and has nothing to do with homosexual males.

  269. David Skinner: back to your question in Post 227. You quoted two cases ans asked my opinion:

    “1. In May, 2008 it was reported in the press: “Two women have married each other in a civil partnership – more than 30 years after they became husband and wife. Martin Packer had to annul his marriage to Linda so he could be legally recognised as a woman after a sex change.

    2. In April 2008 it was reported: ‘Two elderly sisters have lost their battle to enjoy the same tax benefits as same-sex couples who register for civil partnerships.
    Joyce Burden, 90, and her sister Sybil, 82, have lived together in the same house for years, caring for older family members and now for one another.
    Concerned that when one of them dies the other will have to sell the house to cover inheritance duties, the sisters have campaigned for decades to have their relationship treated like a marriage for the purposes of tax law.
    The Civil Partnership Act 2004 allows same-sex couples to register as civil partners, exempting them from inheritance tax. However, the Act prevents partnerships from being registered between close relatives.”

    To me that proves that marraige should be gender neutral. If that was the case, the couple referred to in no.1 wouldn’t have had to divorce just because one of them had changed gender. You say their relationship was non-sexual, but surely the same could be said of many older spouses? Presumably, they cared for each other, having been married for so many years previously. Perhaps they were forced to get divorced but had no real wish to? Marriage is about more than sex, after all.

    In addition, they had previously had a sex life – unlike the sisters you mention in case no.2. Case No.1 was obviously a case of love for a life partner, case 2 is sibling love which has nothing to do with marriages or Civil Partnerships. Call me an idealist, but I imagine most people who get married/CPed don’t do it for tax reasons…

    I’m guessing you feel sympathy for the sisters? I don’t because you could have equally given an example of a brother and sister who could wish to get married for tax reasons. Yep, siblings aren’t allowed to marry/CP (and, actually, I find it a bit sinister if any would even entertain the idea no matter how much tax they might save). The sisters you talked about could take financial advice to set up their affairs in the most beneficial way – just as many people do every year.

    BUT none of this would have arisen if full marriage had been granted to gay people, would it? So, again, an argument FOR gay marriage to avoid such ‘confusions’. Because no-one suggested that such a thing might happen when interracial marriages were permitted in the US, did they? That’s because they were marriages, just like any other.

    We should have gender neutral CIVIL marriage, leaving the churches to discriminate as they choose.

    Lezabella – you’re welcome :) Interesting to read that information about the Third Reich above.

  270. Lezabella and Iris:

    I always learn something from your comments because you are both so grounded. You also write succintly. Observation, not flattery.

    I did a web search on Bishop Narz-Ali. Seems he’s been a controversial figure all his life, and There is no way the Queen would ‘support’ him. She said she “understood’ his concerns; so do I, don’t you? So what. I understood George Bush’s concerns too, but I didn’t support him.

    As for Skinner, I neither understand nor support him, so go ahead and give him both barrels.

  271. Brian Burton 13 Jul 2009, 1:53pm

    Lezabella, Iris,
    Exellent posts and very informative which most posted comments are. Woman who are gay or straight, Should be and logially be equal to male gender. I am part of the UKs ‘United Reformed Church.’ They were establised about 1905 in order to make a clean break from the ‘Church Of England’ (The Established Church) Since 1905 Woman Ministers have been Ordained into the U.R.C. Ministry. So, when all hell broke loose in the Church Of England, because woman wanted to be Ordaind into the C.Of E. My United Reformed Church looked on in dismay at the controvercy. Barriers which should never have been erected in the first place are beginning to crumble. Already, Woman Ministers and lay-preachers are making inroads and making a vast difference to us Christians and I for one am proud of that. I remember a young woman trainee Minister came to a Church of England placement, and a male member of the congregation. When the Trainee appeared, he spit in her face. The man should have been bounced out of that place and told never to come back. I am a man who would like to live to see total equality of the sexes, where no one sex is dominent. Is that asking too much? I do not think so!

  272. Bishop Ioan 13 Jul 2009, 4:39pm

    After reading the comments of David Skinner, I am simply aghast that a person can be so bitter and mean-spirited. He cannot stand even the thought of a world in which all can live together in peace and concord. Very sad.

    Mr. Skinner, please consider seeing a psychiatrist as soon as possible. You have serious delusions, the least of which is that Earth is some sort of “homoplanet”. Just ask those who are persecuted on a daily basis if such a place exists. I’ll warrant that they will quickly agree with me that Earth is very far from being a “homoplanet”. Once you have seen the doctor and received medication, go home and work out your salvation “in fear and trembling”–oh yes and though you might be amusing to some, perhaps once your medications start to work, we will not have to put up with your lunatic ravings.

  273. david skinner 13 Jul 2009, 4:51pm

    Lezabella, what you are suggesting is that the eponymous Ruth is deliberately and calculatingly hoodwinking Boaz, ( who, according to the text, was clearly in love and who considerately and tenderly wooed her) into giving her a child; and that she then committed adultery by shacking up with Naomi, a woman old enough to be her mother, if not her grandmother. Beside which, they would also have been guilty of incest because it was against Jewish law for a father to have sex with his daughter- in -law and presumably for a mother to have sex with her daughter -law. This would clearly make Ruth and Naomi immoral persons who in Old Testament times would have been stoned to death.

    As for your example of Irma Grese being held up as paragon of German womanhood, this, beyond all doubt, places you, madam, beyond the pale.

    Iris, I agree with you that Martin and Lynda should not have divorced: “for better or worse, in sickness and health” and in the eyes of God I believe they are still married. But as to why he had to have surgery, I cannot say, since presumably neither of them now has a sexual relationship? That is, unless he has extra – marital sex. Essentially however, his bones and every other part of his body are that of man no matter what his birth certificate says. Just as Thomas Beatie, the “man” who has given birth to his second child is essentially a woman and nothing can alter this biological truth.

    As for brothers and sisters getting married, there are already pro -incest groups lobbying for their human rights to equality, diversity and inclusion, using exactly the same arguments as the gays. And in the same way that homosexuals deny that their sexual practices result in a greater incidence of sexually related diseases so the pro -incest deny that their unions result in a higher incidence of children with physical and mental deformities.

    To relate homo marriage to interracial marriage is a non- runner. Apart from the fact that the black civil rights movers reject gay marriage outright, Peter Tatchell has denied, in both Spiked on line and in the Guardian, that homosexuality is genetic. I can see that a Black man is black but a gay man has to tell me. Even if I were to see him committing sodomy, that would not mean anything either as men commit this offence on women also. If the mere utterance “I am gay” is sufficient, I also should be able to say “I am a poached egg.”

    When Gordon Brown says that “we cannot legislate for love.” Those in paedophilic, incestuous, bestial, necrophilic, polygamous and polyamorous relationships can all claim that they are in consensual loving relationships and that therefore no one can legislate against their absolute human right to choose whatever from the Dims Sims menu of sex.

    Iris, gays want to appropriate marriage, first to be able to change its essential nature and having done that to discard it completely. Gay philosophy is to destroy all morality and all creational categories. That is why as a movement it is acting, like worm, burrowing into the social fabric and destroying it.

    Trying to eat a jam doughnut without licking one’s lips is almost nigh to impossible but obviously not as difficult as it is for some on this blogg not to hurl abuse and insult at me, whilst at the same time absurdly puffing themselves up. All wind and trousers

  274. Brian Burton 13 Jul 2009, 7:41pm

    There are moments, psychologists tell us, when the passion for sin, or for what the world calls sin, so dominates a nature, that every fibre of the body, as every cell of the brain, seems to be instinct, with varied impulses. Men can loose their freedom or their own will. They move to their terrible end as automatons move. Choice is taken from them, and conscience is either eliminated, or, if it lives at all, lives only to create people like David Skinner.

  275. Brian Burton 13 Jul 2009, 7:49pm

    One fine day in the future, David Skinner will come crawling towards all of those of us he has abused. He will be in rags and covered in the scares of time…..Will You Help This Wretched Creacher laying Prostrait befor you?

  276. david skinner: “To relate homo marriage to interracial marriage is a non- runner. Apart from the fact that the black civil rights movers reject gay marriage outright, Peter Tatchell has denied, in both Spiked on line and in the Guardian, that homosexuality is genetic. I can see that a Black man is black but a gay man has to tell me. Even if I were to see him committing sodomy, that would not mean anything either as men commit this offence on women also. If the mere utterance “I am gay” is sufficient, I also should be able to say “I am a poached egg.””

    I’ve previously explained to you that it’s possible to measure the sexual arousal of men and women – sexual arousal that cannot be hidden – by various methods, one being the brain (I’m sure you can guess the other…)Research on gay men has shown that they are simply not sexually aroused by women even outside of their control; research on straight men has shown they’re not attracted to other men. Interestingly (and this is NOT a dig at you), similar research has shwon that many homophobes are sexually attracted to other men – possibly an explanation – but not an excuse for their homophobia.

    “Iris, gays want to appropriate marriage, first to be able to change its essential nature and having done that to discard it completely. Gay philosophy is to destroy all morality and all creational categories. That is why as a movement it is acting, like worm, burrowing into the social fabric and destroying it.”

    David, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and believe that you really think that’s the case. Let me assure you it’s not. As you’ve probably noticed, many gay people don’t want marriage – if we were trying to appropriate it, we’d all be falling over ourselves to get married. There ARE immoral LGBT people, but there are also immoral heterosexual people. One’s morality is in no way related to one’s sexuality. Gay people are all around you, mostly leading quiet, non-eventful lives that are moral and law-abiding. All we want is to treated as equal human beings. If that had been the case over the years, the gay rights movements wouldn’t have happened. It was discrimination and persecution that led to them being formed.

    I have my own views about social ills: selfishness, intolerance, laziness, the worship of talentless celebrities, a lack of respect for others – those and more have led to the breakdown of society in some areas. None of those have been orchestrated or caused by LGBT people.

    In the countries where gay marriage is permitted, society hasn’t collapsed. Life goes on, just as it did when interracial marriage was allowed. Did you know that the opponents of interracial marriage said it would lead to men marrying animals?? Just the kind of argument I’ve heard so many times about gay marriage. It’s simply not true. We’ve had CPs here in the UK – what’s happened? Nothing bad.

    There is no ‘gay agenda’, no attempt to destroy anything, no desire to interfere with your life. You live your life, believing in God if you choose; we live ours. If anything, I feel that it’s fundamentalist religion that’s trying to burrow into the fabric of society.

  277. david skinner 13 Jul 2009, 11:55pm

    Iris, it is late and I hope, God willing, I shall be able to respond to your post sometime, tomorrow. I apologise if I have given the impression that homosexual practice is any worse than other sins. Romans 2 certainly disabuses anyone who thinks they might be without sin. I have my own thorns in the flesh to contend with, which are far worse than homosexuality. Many years ago I was at a meeting where homosexuality was being discussed and no one said a word; I believe it was because that by doing so their own human weaknesses would be exposed. Some might say that I ought to just give into my own nature, go with the flow. Well I prefer to enter heaven minus eyes, hands and feet, rather than save my whole body and end up in hell. Again, I do not divide people into heterosexuals, homosexuals, bisexuals or whatever; we are simply men and women. I refuse to be put into an evolutionary labelled box – neither do I put you, Iris, into a box.

    If anyone had told me that I would have spent the last three years spending nearly all my time on this issue, I would not have believed them. Certainly I have been observing the death of the west over the last forty years, but I did not foresee that it would eventually focus itself and manifest itself most dramatically with the rise of homosexual ideology and that it would be this that would ultimately lead to the destruction of society; simply because it is the incarnation of all that denies God’s order. It attacks, like nothing else, in bodily form, true truth, morals and being.

    Neither do I believe that becoming a Christian automatically heals or changes someone; but something does happen and change does occur, bit by bit, but it is not me that does the changing, it God’s power working in me that gradually makes me conform to his Son’s image. But could it not be any other way simply because now I am part of the body of Christ. The way is narrow and not easy but not half so hard as the wide and misty plains below that lead to destruction.

  278. Psaw! How exacctly is my private bedroom action going to shake the foundations of civilization?

    At the very worst, my snoring will peel the paint off the walls.

    Z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z

  279. So Mr. Skinner, you had never heard of the word ‘recension’ until I mentioned it. Just where have you been living all your life – on the Moon? I don’t suppose, then, that you have read any of the hundreds famous authors on the subject – almost all, just like me, men of faith. Might I suggest that you start with these few and then when you’ve read them, use each of their bibliographies to lead you on to other learned academic experts from all the ages:

    Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible by Emanul Tov
    The Textual Study of the Bible by Shemaryahu Talmon
    The Old Testament Text also by Talmon
    The Evolution of a Theory of Local Text by F.M. Cross
    The Edited Bible by John Van Seters (Published in 2006)

    Oh, and books about the recension of the Bible sell very well thank-you!

    You also asked:

    “…if the Bible is so opaque, riddled with errors and contradictions, and if it requires the amount of erudition and scholarship that only exalted souls like yourself have acquired, why on earth would anyone bother to read it? If the Bible is so incomprehensible why on earth does it remain the most widely read book in the world…[?]”

    My question exactly put. Why should anyone without the necessary knowledge believe that he or she, just like you, has some complete understanding of it when, manifestly, they can only understand it in as much as they have been taught that understanding by someone else and, as in your case you have been taught your understanding and your particular exegesis by people who had very little, if any, interest in teaching you about the pitfalls inherent in our texts and the great difficulties of translation. Now, ask yourself, if you dare, why did your teachers do that to you – just why did they mislead you in way that they did? What was in it for them?

    You have been badly taught – as many though out the ages have been. Scholars have known since the day that the Bible first started to be written down that there were, and are, huge problems with the translations of, and the incompleteness of, the texts. The discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls filled in a few of the blanks and answered one or two of the questions but, regrettably that discovery raised thousands of new questions and indicated that the blanks were far larger than we had imagined.

    Then you went on to say:

    ”Why on earth, indeed, would Jesus Christ, Stephen, Peter, Paul and the rest of the apostles continue to quote it, in the new Testament, word for word, if it was shot[?]”

    That, however, is just circular argument and indicative of the fact that you did not fully understand my points. We don’t know if they really did quote exactly as you say they did. The texts are faulty and have been tampered with – as the same techniques used by modern day Police Departments indicate most strongly when applied to Biblical Texts. All we can assert with confidence from the New Testament is that Christ’s universal message of love shines through from beginning to end and that that is unlikely to have been as a result of tampering or selective editing after the event.

    We must use our texts wisely – not as instrument with which to bludgeon and belabour others but as means to love and to tolerate all the worlds’ many peoples.

  280. Really, Mr. Skinner! You said:

    ”Those in paedophilic, incestuous, bestial, necrophilic, polygamous and polyamorous relationships can all claim that they are in consensual loving relationships and that therefore no one can legislate against their absolute human right to choose whatever from the Dims Sims menu of sex.”

    The beast, children and the dead cannot, by definition, give consent and you know that, for consent has to be informed. Polygamy, polyandry and other forms of polyamorous marriages are simply an excuse for abuse by the strongest of the weakest and have far more to do with power over other people and wealth and status collection than with relationships, and, again, had you read widely enough you would know that.

    You also said:

    Gay philosophy is to destroy all morality and all creational categories.

    Rubbish! That is merely a personal opinion masquerading as fact. Gay philosophy, if such a thing can be said to exist, is about asking for human rights and indicating quite clearly that human sexuality is not as clear cut, as black and white, as people like you want desperately, for some unknown but probably irrational and bizarre reason, to believe.

    Again, from you:

    Peter Tatchell has denied, in both Spiked on line and in the Guardian, that homosexuality is genetic.

    Mr. Tatchell is a world authority on genetics and statistical genetics, is he? I think not! The evidence accumulated by geneticists and statistical geneticists so far, indicates that the gene for homosexuality is carried in the female side of the human race but it is complete chance, as one would expect, as to whether or not that gene is expressed in any offspring, or, and as one could equally expect, that it will only be expressed when a female carrier of that gene mates with a certain genetic type of male carrying, perhaps, some corresponding gene or some chromosome(s) essential to allow such expression.

  281. John M.J.:

    Still exploring the site. I left a message for you with Rebecca. It occured to me later that she very possibly is up to neck in more relevant business, and may have forgotten about it.

    I also left a comment on Sam-Sam. Frankly, I haven’t found any other way so far. Gimme a clue.

    As for your comments above, 1) welcome back; 2) your ‘Biblical Studies 101′ are showing! Hahaha.

  282. Oh and by the way, and to remain of the topic of repentance, I’m ‘sorry’ to have to tell you that my favorite versions of ‘Marble Halls’ are as follows: 1) Aled Jones; 2) Yvonne Kenny; 3) Jessye Norman.

    Again, I must ‘confess’ that I am rather fond of Scots, and Aled blew me away. How inspiring, every one of them, even Enya.

    I wonder if his excellency Nazir-Ali has ever heard of recension.

    If only it could dawn on D. Skinner that his steadfastness in Bible studies has led him here and now, on a thread with a scholar whose intentions are clearly not hostile, and whose opinions are well referenced.

    Only he can resolve it, and I honestly hope he does. This may be his last chance.

  283. Well, I’m away on a work-related course very soon – a week with no internet access! Help!
    Hope everyone else enjoys this thread ;)

  284. david skinner 14 Jul 2009, 8:20am

    John M.J, I shall, like Iris, depart, and leave you to let the cat out, switch off the lights and lock up. Yes, I now realise what recension is; and, yes I have met you before ; both you and it are described perfectly in 2 Peter chapter 2.

    I don’t condemn or judge you for 2 Peter 2 does that infinitely better than I ever could. As for your certainty of the existence of a homosexual gene, why has it not revealed itself? Where is the proof? Describe it. And if scientists can identify and locate it, why can they not screen it out for those mothers who don’t want a homosexual baby? Surely by the time the foetus has reached 22 weeks old it would be evident and the mother would, because it is her choice- apparently, according the law- be free to abort it.

    Finally I don’t know which Jesus you follow but it is not the one of the Bible. But then I forgot, silly me, the Bible is full of errors and so we cannot even believe that he even existed.

    Bon Appetit.

    But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.
    For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others; if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)— if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment. This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature and despise authority.
    Bold and arrogant, these men are not afraid to slander celestial beings; yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not bring slanderous accusations against such beings in the presence of the Lord. But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like brute beasts, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like beasts they too will perish.
    They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, revelling in their pleasures while they feast with you. With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed—an accursed brood! They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Beor, who loved the wages of wickedness. But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey—a beast without speech—who spoke with a man’s voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.
    These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them. Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed goes back to her wallowing in the mud.”

  285. Brian Burton 14 Jul 2009, 8:20am

    Bentham, John M.J.
    I am very glad there are two opinions on these threads I like to hear. John M.J., your counter arguements on marrage of any kind are far more locical than the dreaded D.S. could ever be. I did not realize Peter Tatchell was an expert on Geneology. I have only ever witnessed P.T. swimging a Gay cudgel rather than the optional rainbow flag at events. Peter was nearly sent to prison for Blastphemy some years ago. But, in those days, even I had one foot in Prison and just for simply being Gay. Thank-fully, that is all behind us now in the UK. In-grained on my memory for ever is: Oscar Wilde’s imprisonment, Lord Montague, Michael Pitt-Rivers and writer Peter Wildblood. They were sentenced in 1956/57. Dear Bentham is Artistic and reminds me of the many Artists, Poets and writers, whom I have had the pleasure and privelage of encountering, on my own journy through life. Well the journy is not over yet. There are many rivers to cross and mountains to climb. Do you agree Boys?

  286. Thankyou, Brian, Iris and Bentham for your compliments and insight, it’s much appreciated :)

    David Skinner- “As for your example of Irma Grese being held up as paragon of German womanhood, this, beyond all doubt, places you, madam, beyond the pale.”

    Hmmm, very transparent attempt to twist everything I said. Fortunately people on here are intelligent and didn’t take any notice. Please refrain from twisting my words in a very deceitful manner- it doesn’t suit you. I was talking about Irma Grese in the context of the high rank she, and her superior, Elizabeth Volkenrath, held in what you said, was a homosexual misogynistic society where women were nothing. For these two women, and many more like them working for the Gestapo et al, to attain such high-ranking Nazi positions proves your argument was flawed. That was my point, nothing more, nothing less.

    A good example of ‘German womanhood’ in my opinion was Sophie Scholl of The White Rose Movement. Look her up.

    Ruth and Naomi didn’t commit ‘incest’ as they were not blood related. The word ‘dabaq’ is the sexual feeling a man felt towards his wife. They felt that for eachother, the Bible says so. There’s no way you can twist this. It’s self-explanatory and doesn’t need ‘interpretation’. A spade is a spade as lesbians are lesbians!

    “Even if I were to see him committing sodomy, that would not mean anything either as men commit this offence on women ”

    So straight men who have anal sex with women ARE sodomites…..hmmm, then I feel many men, gay or straight, are condemned as a lot of people enjoy this act!

    But I must say, that in my opinion, for Yaweh or Jehovah (or whichever name you like) to be that obsessed with what people do with their bums is a bit far-fetched when the world is full of wars, genocide and murder.

  287. Brian Burton 14 Jul 2009, 1:16pm

    Lezabella,
    Well posted, the expression (Don’t let the Bastards get you down) spring to mind as Skinner trys to Twist anything anyone says to suit himself. Cunning crocodile that one!

  288. D.S.:

    And in your case, to quote James Joyce, a sow will eat her own children.

    You really don’t deserve any attention. Take an evening to enjoy the extraordinary photos on YouTube, especially those taken by the Hubble telescope, and think. Why? Because that’s what minds are for.

  289. Brian Burton 14 Jul 2009, 1:47pm

    John M.J. and Bentham,
    Siegfried Sasoon Poet 1886-1967. There is a name to conjour with! Sasoon was almost as famous a Lawrence of Arabia. They were both,
    Gentlmen, scollars and mighty warriors. They were also Homosexual, both troubled because of their sexuality. But managed to get by without any scandel. Sasoon fought and won the Military Cross after being wounded and invalided out of WW1. During his covalesence he was invited to stay with Robert Ross, Journalist and Oscar Wilde’s first Gay Lover. I have no doubt a little ‘slap and tickle’ took place. After Sasoons Medical discharge from the Army, he went on to many more homosexual relationships. Robert Ross died suddenly in 1918 and his ashes are interred in Wild’s Grave in Le Pere Lachaise Cemetery. It fits, because Robert Ross was born in Tours-France.
    Some were born great. Some achive greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them. Sasoon, Wilde, Lawrence, all great Homosexuals.

  290. On the off-chance that D. Skinner is listening and is remotely interested in autobiographical material concerning the inner world of ‘urnings’, on this day in 1825 was born Karl-Heinrich Ulrichs (d. 1895).

    Also, for those who would remove the British monarchy’s influence in matters concerning religion, today is Bastille Day in France Hello Republicanism.

  291. jeff Muller 14 Jul 2009, 7:43pm

    England is way behind the U.S. and “old Europe” in regards to gay acceptance. It is tied to the Oscar Wilde thing.

  292. Rick George 14 Jul 2009, 8:32pm

    Why do you believe the things you believe? Where do you get the ideas you talk about from? What do you use as evidence to support your beliefs? I’ve assumed that you were born and reside in the united kingdom is that correct or are you from america? What thought process did you go through to arrive at the mindset you now hold? How did you get to where you are now in your beliefs? Obviously you’ve learned to read and write, but from there, how did you get to where you are now in your thinking and beliefs? What evidence supports your belief that the things you say are accurate representations of reality?

  293. Rick George 14 Jul 2009, 8:32pm

    the above is for david skinner

  294. Mr. Skinner, you said:

    Finally I don’t know which Jesus you follow but it is not the one of the Bible. But then I forgot, silly me, the Bible is full of errors and so we cannot even believe that he even existed.

    No, that is not what I said. Once again you have deliberately twisted someone’s meaning to suit your own views as to what he said. There is ample evidence that Jesus Christ existed and that he preached a great gospel of love, forgiveness and tolerance – and that is the Christ whom I believe in.

    What I actually said was, and to put it in plainer words, that other than deriving that great message from our ancient texts, both Biblical and non-Biblical, one would be on extremely unsound ground to assert that anything else was uncontrovertibly and absolutely true and factual.

    You said:

    As for your certainty of the existence of a homosexual gene, why has it not revealed itself? Where is the proof? Describe it. And if scientists can identify and locate it, why can they not screen it out for those mothers who don’t want a homosexual baby? Surely by the time the foetus has reached 22 weeks old it would be evident and the mother would, because it is her choice- apparently, according the law- be free to abort it.

    You are deliberately attempting to mislead by your implication that human genome has been fully explored – it has been fully mapped but only a tiny percentage of it has been fully investigated. Research geneticists will one day (sooner or much, much later) establish whether or not the theoretical and the statistical geneticists are correct about the gay gene and about many other genes also. So far the record of the theoreticians and the statisticians has been one hundred percent.

    Further, scientists are working at screening out, as you phrase it, known genes for known illnesses and this unlikely to be possible for many a long decade yet. As for developing accurate tests for genetic deformities that can be carried out on the foetus in the womb with out there being any risk to that foetus then that too is likely to be many decades away – if it’s even going to be possible at all.

    Finally, you end up at another of your wilfully and deliberately misleading assertions – namely that a mother would be free to abort a foetus in which the putative gay gene had expressed itself. You know as well as I do that being gay is not regarded by any reputable medical authority as an illness and that no such abortions would be permitted under the law of this country or many other countries in the civilised world. Scare tactics, unfounded in any fact or learning, will not work at this site for this is a site where your mean and petty viciousness and your obvious hatred, as well as your twisted and illogical method or arguing, will be challenged here every step of the way by me and by many others who are more learned and skilled than I.

    I’m irresistibly reminded of the little boy who just couldn’t get it right in his first marching to music class. Eventually he lay down on the ground and drummed his heels on the floor in a tantrum.

    “Why are you all out of step,” he screamed at his classmates, “I’m the only one in step. It’s you who are all wrong!”

    You, Mr. Skinner, are that little boy.

  295. Rick George 15 Jul 2009, 3:07am

    David Skinner, did I hear right? A Christian fundamentalist in favor of abortion? A Christian who supports eugenics? Surely a contradiction?

  296. Aw Rick, you know Skinner was just fooling around. He didn’t really mean that. Everybody knows that if the dear man didn’t love every one of us, he wouldn’t bother even talking to us.

    The last thing he would want is to hack us to death in the womb; it just doesn’t add up. I mean…what would he do, without us?

    We have brought so many happy hours to his life, so much meaning and inspiration…m-m-m that sounds like a good title for a song: Me-me-me-me-me!

    Marching to the beat of his own drummer, is he?

    So much time alone in the desert, the dazzling heat, the blinding sun… and not a computer in sight, one mirage after another, and where’s a good stenographer when you need one?

    By the way, I do believe Lezabella has been patient long enough. How long does Mr. Skinner expect her to wait? She has equal rights to his attention, doesn’t she?

    Do you suppose Skinner has forgotten to answer Iris’ post 278?

    David ‘Ham’ Skinner, where are yo-o-o-u? We have a MEMO for you!

    There I go, babblin’ agin. Time for my green tea.

  297. Rick George 15 Jul 2009, 6:29am

    What happened to thou shalt not kill? Oh yeah thats right, it doesnt include slaves, non christians, gay people, women who dont scream loud enough if they get raped, girls who are found not to be virgins on their wedding night, people who follow earth or nature based religions, unruly kids, anyone who encourages interfaith dialogue, people who claim they are psychic, someone who disagrees with a priest.

  298. Brian Burton 15 Jul 2009, 6:46am

    Splendid! Splendid! Mon Ami.
    The count on this thread is 297, I volenteer to make it 298!!

    Early one morning, just as the sun was rising.
    I heard a maid sing, in a vally below.
    Oh! don’t deceive me, Oh! never Leave me.
    How could you use, a poor Maiden so?

    Remember the vow that you made to your Mary?
    Remember the Bower, where youvowed to be true?
    Oh! don’t deceive me, Oh! never leave me.
    How could you use such a poor Maiden so?

    There had to be a villan in a vivtorian song!

  299. Brian Burton 15 Jul 2009, 10:01am

    What about Clergy who have sex with anyone who will indulge them in the Vestry? What sacralidge! The question I ask myself in such circumstances is. That man of the Cloth; Is his sexual need stronger than his faith?

  300. Brian Burton 15 Jul 2009, 7:03pm

    HERE IS THE NEWS: The Bishop of Rocester censored one of his Ministers today. After the Dean reported him. They found his housekepers Vest in his Vestry And his Pants in her pantry!

  301. David Skinner, eugenecist, has left the room.

  302. Mr. Burton at 301,

    And his sac in close by her sacristy, no doubt.

    Grief! Why can I never resist a bad pun?

  303. Rick George 16 Jul 2009, 3:48am

    Did she stick her finger in his priest hole?

  304. Rick George 16 Jul 2009, 3:56am

    Is it me or does the bishop look like one of the wombles? Im on a nightshift, its quiet. What can I say. Uncle Bulgaria isnt it?

  305. We do carry on. Ain’t life grande ! Love a sense of humour. Smack right to ya!

    John M.J.:

    On second thought, it’s a toss-up between Aled Jones and Jessye Norman, and yes, I have heard Joan Sutherland’s version.

    Call me nosey, but R U Unitarian?

  306. Brian Burton 16 Jul 2009, 9:15am

    Oh! you Gorgeous, Beautiful SMARTY pantses! Sock-it to me!

    What do you get if you cross a table-tennis ball with a larg chamber-Pot?
    You get a PIN-PONG-PIDDLE-I-POE!

  307. Bentham/

    For me it’s always Jessye Norman, but that’s just my personal taste, run a close second by Joan Sutherland.

    No, I’m not Unitarian; I’m C. of E. (high Church and almost, but not quite, Anglo-Catholic). That revelation should give Mr. Skinner pause for thought – one can’t help but wonder what invective he’ll throw at me for that!

    Did you get my email?

  308. Mr. Burton/

    Wonderful! The late lamented Spike would surely have been proud of you! Love it!

  309. Rick George at 304/

    No she didn’t. She was Dutch and had much more sense than that. She stuck her finger in a dyke as any intelligent woman would!

    Yikes! That probably offends everybody. I don’t wish to offend anybody – I simply can’t resist immature, schoolboy humour. I probably haven’t grown up yet!

  310. Rick George/

    In reply to your comment at 304. No she didn’t. She was probably Dutch and had much more sense than to do that. She stuck her finger in a dyke as any intelligent woman would have done!

    Grief! That remark probably offends everybody. I have no wish to offend anybody but I simply can’t resist immature and schoolboyish humour. It probably means that I haven’t grown up yet!

  311. Brian Burton 17 Jul 2009, 12:19pm

    John M.J. I grabbed one of Spike’s the other day when some (Dry Remark) American said on a Thread: ” I stubbed my toe once!” I replyed, “I did’nt know you smoked it!”

  312. Well, if you guys are going to stoop to conquer, I’ve got a groaner or two of my own…

    Did you hear about the butcher who backed up into the meat grinder and got a little behind in his work? Altogether now: GROAN!

    J.M.J.: No e-mail yet! I revisited the site, sent a note to info@
    and asked that it be forwarded.

    I listened to Joan Sutherland several times before arriving at my choices the first time around. It’s incredible that Joan Sutherland still performs at this level; my jaw dropped at her stunning vocal acrobatics. I seem to remember hearing her Hi-C in the 60′s. Is that possible? Also, I did notice that someone noticed that she wasn’t mentioned.

    After listenning to others again, I heard Jessye Norman bubble to the top. Jessye’s poise, her presence, her gown (gotta mention that), her graciousness, her delicatesse (except for the openning notes)…the tops.

    I do like the Scottish simplicity though, and I will hear more of Aled.

    Rick George: R U at all familiar with The White Crane Institute (gaywisdom dot org) from New york?

    Was that D. Skinner who was spotted with the B. of Rochester going to Eugenics 101? I hope TomPaine got wind of Skinner’s ultimate solution – abortion. A real corker!

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