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Christian writer’s pilgrimage to ‘repent’ of homophobia

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  1. He’d be better ceasing to believe in the malevolent sky fairy he calls ‘god’. As is witnessed time and time and time again, religion and belief in ‘god’ has a far more negative impact on society than a positive one.

  2. Dave North 10 Dec 2010, 3:27pm

    ““I was fine with homosexuality and bisexuality before I became a Christian in my late teens. But after my conversion, I thought that opposition to same-sex relationships was ‘part of the deal”

    And in that he has just about summed up the whole XIAN ethos.

    Religion. A corrupting ideal if ever there was one.

  3. shove it

  4. Religion isn’t going anywhere fast – and while it’s still here, the world needs more people like this guy.

  5. Will Dublin 10 Dec 2010, 4:25pm

    “Religion isn’t going anywhere fast”

    Indeed. And that’s the problem with religion, it never goes anywhere, its insular and closed, trapped by circular arguments, threatened by logic, reason and an inquiring mind, but you’re right, more like him condemning homophobia within their ranks is a good thing.

  6. I think it’s perfectly fine to have religious beliefs as long as they do not negatively impact anyone else.

    Good job this guy!

  7. Bill (Scotland) 10 Dec 2010, 5:20pm

    Why wait until June for the warmer weather? If his ‘God’ really is there then [s]he will no doubt protect him from being frozen to death on his pointless pilgrimage. He sounds like like he’s just another religious nutter. Sad.

  8. Nice try but will he also beat his head against the brick wall he’ll ultimately find at the end of his pilgrimage…
    Any benefits one finds in using religion as a crutch come at great personal cost as Symon Hill is only now beginning to realise.

  9. Religion isn’t going anywhere fast – and while it’s still here, the world needs more people like this guy.
    Oscar.

    You are right Oscar. They know which buttons to press to stay put. The main one being fear of death.. People like this guy should be encouraged.13

  10. you’re in the wrong job mate! get a life!

  11. PumpkinPie 10 Dec 2010, 7:07pm

    Wow, what a great guy! Theresa May, take note! I do wish he’d embrace his bisexuality (I’m guessing it’s that), rather than using flowery language to describe it, but apart from that, I’m very impressed. I wish him the best of luck – and I also wish there were more “repenters” out there like him!

  12. I agree with Peter Tatchell.
    Whereas the hate spewed by some of you is no better than the hate spewed by the christian fundamentalists.
    And if Simon does read pink news, good luck to him on his journey, it takes more guts to do what he is doing than anonymously writing ‘get a life’ on pink news.

  13. SHAME ON YOU MR HILL, you cannot say you’re Christian and embrace un-Godly practices. You know well that God does not approve of certain lifestyles because they are destructive, even if some decide to live’em. You push them further into madness.

  14. Deb Curnock 10 Dec 2010, 9:27pm

    @Pumpkinpie: I too am “not exclusively heterosexual” or as I sometimes say “not quite straight” or just “straightish”. It’s not flowery language, just more nuanced and closer to the truth than “bisexual” which is a rather simplistic, blunt and confusing label. I’m sure Symon like me has spent a lot of time figuring out the best words to use. He is a very forthright campaigner for LGBT rights and certainly has no qualms over being open about his sexuality!

  15. Once again, Sottom feels strangely moved to hang out with us. Funny way for a straight boy to spend a Friday night…

  16. Surely ‘Sottom’ has misspelt his screen name, and that S should actually be a B?

  17. Now that’s what I call making amends.

    It would be very easy for someone to change their mind and just pretend the past never happened, or try to hide the past. I can think of numerous MPs who suddenly had a ‘road to damascus’ experience about gay acceptance and Clause 28 who come into such a category.

    Here is someone who is prepared to say he was wrong in the most public way possible. I applaud this, and I hope his initiaitve is an inspiration to others. I wish him success, and I would be delighted to buy Symon a pint somewhere along the way.

    I would also suggest Symon might do a little stont of volunteer work with e.g. Stonewall Housing, Albert Kennedy Trust etc. And get to understand how religious-inspired homophobia can be so damaging and hurtful.

    Wouldn’t it be wonderful to see politicians show such candour? I’d love to see William Haig, Iain Duncan Smith and David Cameron join him on the way.

  18. sottom wrote

    “SHAME ON YOU MR HILL, you cannot say you’re Christian and embrace un-Godly practices. ”

    Sottom . . . Which Fundamentalist Evangelical Christian church do you belong to?

  19. sottom wrote

    “SHAME ON YOU MR HILL, you cannot say you’re Christian and embrace un-Godly practices. ”

    You can, Symon Hill has done which kind of makes you untruthful, a sin by the way.

    There are lots of christians who all seem to believe different things, it is funny how nasty they can be to each other never mind to people who think the are deluded.

  20. Will Dublin 11 Dec 2010, 9:18am

    “You know well that God does not approve of certain lifestyles because they are destructive”

    LOL! Indeed. As you seem to “know well” what god wants, he must talk to you much then, sottom? Are these voices regular or do they scream at you? The only person here going against christian teaching is you, sottom. But you won’t accept that. The voices will tell you want you want to hear,

    Actually, folks, if you look at the way this “sottom” nut enters his web address as “http://n/A”, its identical as how that “other” freaking basket case “Cormra” does. They’re the same person. But then again, why would this paragon of religious insanity having split personality disorder surprise me?

  21. de Villiers 11 Dec 2010, 11:03am

    > shove it

    What? For changing his mind?

  22. mmm..ofc, Peter Tatchell is right on..

  23. As a bisexual girl who also identifies as a Christian (albeit one who refuses to go to Church or buy into the dogma and corporations that have nothing to do with original meaning) I think that some of the attitudes towards religion here need to be rethought.

    It’s not the religion that spreads hatred but the people who utlilise and manipulate it to their own end.

    I was an atheist until I studied philosophy at A Level, and was persuaded that there is something “more” out there. And, after actually reading the Bible, there was much I agreed with in what Jesus said. It’s all about love, and I believe that I have been made this way – bisexual – because that’s exactly what God wanted me to be. I’ve never had to compromise one or the other because that’s a truth that can’t be denied. There is not a natural conflict between religion and sexuality, but there is a man-made conflict which is perpetuated by BOTH sides. We judge the normal, every day Christians who actually have no problem with people who are non hetero-normative, by the same standards that we judge the nutters. My Aunt is fully accepting of my sexuality and yet she is a Catholic born and raised – she dislikes the dogma that dominates the Church and thinks it should go back to the ideals of truth and love. She doesn’t tolerate me, she celebrates me. Because thar’s what true Christians do.

    You can be a supporter of LGBT rights and you can be a Christian (or any other religion). You can be LGBT and a religious person. The President of our LGBT Association helps at a Sunday School in his home town.

    So what this man is doing is emphasising the fact that there doesn’t have to be a conflict. What he is doing is wonderful and I applaud it, as his message is important. Fighting for LGBT acceptance is not about crushing religion or getting rid of it, it’s about bringing religions back to the original ideologies of love and acceptance. Yes, I have received religious-based biphobia and homophobia, before anyone comes down on my for that, and have been made to feel unwelcome by religious people for no other reason than my sexuality. But by jumping on all religious people, calling them stupid and mocking their beliefs by making comments about “sky fairies” we are continuing a conflict that is, considering the fact that Christianity is about love and the LGBT movement is about tolerance, so, so wrong.

    Well done, sir. Good luck to you, and I hope your mission is as successful as it can be.

  24. “Actually, folks, if you look at the way this “sottom” nut enters his web address as “http://n/A”, its identical as how that “other” freaking basket case “Cormra” does. They’re the same person”

    Well spotted Will Dublin! You are right, both names use the same “n/A” type URL. Well, I always suspected Comra was some sad lonely twat sitting in a dark room getting cheap kicks form a gay site, and the fact that he has to use another name to make it seem there are more of these freak out there, well, that speaks volumes. What a odious individual he must be.

  25. “As a bisexual girl who also identifies as a Christian …. I think that some of the attitudes towards religion here need to be rethought.”etc.

    The bible says you have to hate fags (and jews, etc) – Fred Phelps is right.

    You just push the problem one stage back and are no nearer the truth than I am, or anyone else. The very best you can do is say there is a force, you can appeal to deism, but you can go no further.

    the fact that you have managed to reconcile your sexuality with the works of simple palestinians who knew no science, no meteorology, no medicine, no astronomy, no natural science and attributed it all to a dictator in the sky – male as well – says nothing to support your position.

  26. de Villiers 12 Dec 2010, 11:34am

    > the fact that you have managed to reconcile your sexuality with the works of simple palestinians

    That is a bit unfair and takes the argument at its lowest. If you wish to take the argument at its highest then you should be making reference to Augustine and his works The Confessions, On Christian Doctrine and The Trinity, Aristotle, Kant and his Critique of Pure Reason, Wittgenstein and his work Tracatus Logico-Philosophicus, Heidegger and his works Being and Time and The Principle of Reason.

    The discipline of theology as a branch of philosophy is rigorous and scholarly. There is more to the concept of the divine than immediate dismissal or invocation.

  27. ‘I was an atheist until I studied philosophy at A Level, and was persuaded that there is something “more” out there—‘ etc…

    ‘….The whole theory of modern education is radically unsound. Fortunately in England, at any rate, education produces no effect whatsoever…’
    Lady Bracknell.

  28. AdrianT,
    …………”The bible says you have to hate fags, and Jews” – Really? Where? Show me the lines from the bible you are referring to. Or are you just repeating what the uneducated Fred phelps and other fundamentalists tell you? And why would think it says in the bible you should hate Jews, it was written by Jews.
    ………..”the fact that you have managed to reconcile your sexuality with the works of simple palestinians who knew no science, no meteorology, no medicine, no astronomy, no natural science and attributed it all to a dictator in the sky”
    the writers of the bible weren’t Palestinian, they were Israelites. And your history on science, meteorology, especially astronomy needs a little more research before you make those claims. It is true that science and art were secondary to the early Israelites, as they were not conquerers of nations, survival was their primary objective. But, I assure you the most important scientists throughout time, (Einstein, Plank, Newton, Mendel, Faraday, Gallileo, Bacon, Copernicus, Darwin) that have come up with the most fundamental theories that have changed the world, all believed or contemplated the existence of God.
    No God(s), No civilisation.

  29. Will Dublin 12 Dec 2010, 4:31pm

    “I assure you the most important scientists throughout time, (Einstein, Plank, Newton, Mendel, Faraday, Gallileo, Bacon, Copernicus, Darwin) that have come up with the most fundamental theories that have changed the world, all believed or contemplated the existence of God.”

    Actually, you’re wrong.

    Firstly, this is a correlation fallacy. Just because one person who is a scientist believes in god, does not make it a fact, most scientists are atheists. 93% of the members of the |National Academy of Sciences in the US reject the concept of god [The Nation - 2007]. So don’t try to validate your religious convictions by using this fallacy, its only makes you look weak minded. At least have the strength to have your own convictions without bending the truth.

    Secondly, most people you quote did NOT believe in god, you simple misquoted their Pantheistic view of nature. Lets take ONE example:- Einstein was in fact an atheist. Lets look at some examples:

    “From the viewpoint of a Jesuit priest I am, of course, and have always been an atheist.” – Albert Einstein, letter to Guy H. Raner Jr, July 2, 1945

    and

    “I have repeatedly said that in my opinion the idea of a personal God is a childlike one. You may call me an agnostic, but I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth.” – Albert Einstein, letter to Guy H. Raner Jr., Sept. 28, 1949

    Religious types like you are constantly misquoting out of context a few Pantheistic quotes.

    “No God(s), No civilisation.”

    Actually, no god, better civilisation. Point in case: the dark ages. If it wasn’t for them, we’d probably colonised half the solar system by now.

    I have nothing against religion, but you haven’t a clue what you’re talking about Toby, just re-spouting the same tired old cherry picked nonsense.

  30. Erin,
    It’s interesting because I was a Christian until I studied philosophy at A-level and thought, wait, this doesn’t fit. Having said that, though, I agree with a lot of your comment. Christianity itself, at least according to the New testament and Jesus, shouldn’t perpetuate hate and it is the people who do that through flawed interpretations of ‘love’. And I do think there is very little conflict between religion and sexuality.
    But, you’ve been lucky. You have accepting family members and you’ve seen the combination of religion and LGBT first-hand.
    Most of us, I suspect, have not. All I’ve heard from the Christians I’ve met has been, for example, “if you don’t get out of this relationship you’re going to hell” and “it’s hypocritical to be gay and a Christian” – and that has far more of an impact on a person than one man’s crusade to preach acceptance to churches.

    I agree with what this guy’s doing and I applaud him for it. But it’s going to take a lot more than this to undo centuries of insititutional homophobia and, really, there’s only so much that one guy can do.

  31. @ Will Dublin: wonderful comment :) I couldn’t agree more.

    Ps. Einstein reiterated his views on ‘god’ in another letter to the philosopher Eric Gutkind:
    “The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this.”
    Albert Einstein, letter to Eric Gutkind, Jan. 3, 1954

  32. “I DO NOT share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth.”

    Sounds like einstein wouldn’t share your professional atheism. And you saying you have nothing against religion. LOL. Have you read in your other comments what you say to people who are religious. You’re just an angry guy who has got a lot of issues with the irrational, spiritual, religious.

    and btw, I keep telling you, I’m not religious.

    I’m kinda bored of trying to show you that all the best thinkers in the world have a relationship with god in some manifestation. Here’s some more of Einstein’s thoughts on God……

    “A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, of the manifestations of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty – it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute the truly religious attitude; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man.”

    “I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with the fates and actions of human beings.”

    “The most beautiful and most profound experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, IS AS GOOD AS DEAD. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their primitive forms – this knowledge, this feeling is at the center of true religiousness.”

  33. Will Dublin 12 Dec 2010, 8:30pm

    “You’re just an angry guy who has got a lot of issues with the irrational, spiritual, religious.”

    Interesting response given you were proven wrong. Interesting.

    Do you even KNOW what pantheism is? Seems not.

    Next time try some fact, back up your quotes with dates and figures, it help you look that one bit less the fool when proven wrong.

  34. It’s great how many people in the “gay community” complain so much about the hammering we recieve from religious fundamentalist types and show a complete lack of disrespect and tollerence towards people of religious faith themselves which is pure hypocracy. I am an out gay man in a loving relationship with my partner of 7 years, and we are both Christians. My relationship with God is as central to my identity as my sexuality, if not moreso.

    I commend Symon Hill and all others like him who have turned from their destructive hate filled interpretations of scripture to take a more inclusive attitude. The ONLY way to move society forward is to reject all forms of hate mongering on all sides and have a fundamental respect for each human individual whether or not we always agree with their viewpoints.

  35. Jeez, blarney stone or what. Where exactly did you prove me wrong?

    I gave you quotes from Einstein where he says he was not an atheist, that he considers himself religious, and that…….. “The most beautiful and most profound experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science.”

    btw, Pantheism is a religious tradition.

    As for the dates and names. I’m too old for that, gave up on those after my PhD. But you know Einstein said all those things, if you know anything about Einstein.

    Oh, and you think I’m a fool. LOL. Who cares? I know I’m a fool. I’m certainly a fool for sitting here writing this to you.

    and btw, if all those scientists in my list had bothered about being made a fool of, they wouldn’t have come up with incredibly original thoughts.

    I like what Shakespeare thought about fools………………

    “A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.”

    And you think you are so wise, don’t you Will?

  36. You know, you can be a believer AND homosexual or bisexual. There’s a protestant church in my hometown where a huge group of heterosexual and homosexual people come together the celebrate mass. Like “Erin” I believe and I have a right to do that, because this isn’t about black or white, it’s about being yourself and standing up for that. There are lots of straight people who are catholic and go to mass every Sunday and yet use condoms, work on Saturday or Sunday and shave, and all of that is wrong according to the book of Leviticus as well.

  37. Admittedly I haven’t been to church for a very long time but I don’t remember this obsession with homosexuality or this hatred against it in any sermons etc …I don’t remember a deep analysis of biblical text to give an analyis on whether being gay is wrong – we might have been told that murder and theft was wrong but not being gay …… I must be lucky but I can’t relate this attitude against gays to the Christian people that I know,,…it’s good to see a mini rebellion happenniing from the inside, I can’t really see these anti-gay sentiments being really popular , aren’t they out of touch with the general/majority christian public?? .. It’s such a shame that the leaders of the church and the relgious academics can’t keep up with changing times, given time I hope they’ll become even more irrelevant in the UK than they are now…

  38. If religious institutions had been a force for good in the world, we would not need the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to rid us of homophobia.

  39. Well as long the reilgious orgs’ human rights of freedom of speech and expression don’t interfer with my humann rights to be treated equally and without discrimination then that’s ok but when the Bishops and govt adapt the British laws to continue discrimination and water down my human rights eg giving us CPs instead of marriage then I think there is a problem and a severe clash of human rights!

  40. To Toby, I am astounded by your arrogance in calling someone “irrational” when you have been shown to be poorly informed in matters you claim to have knowledge about, and yet reply in such offensive terms. I suspect your so called PhD was not in a science field. Really, you should have some grace in defeat. That last little tantrum just shows up your mental age.

    And you claim not to be religions? Please. You demonstrate all the twisted truths of the religious. Pantheism is the view that the Universe (i.e. Nature) and God are identical. Its is not a belief in the devine in the same way as Christians. And besides, Einstein was at best agnostic, and self admitting atheist, and claimed many time not to be a believer. So was Darwin. You clearly know little about Einstein’s work, otherwise you would not make such stupid remarks in defence of religion, or your own religion that you claim not to be.

    I’m sure you will come back with a child like retort, but really, the only one that is a fool here is you. Grow up.

  41. Will Dublin 13 Dec 2010, 8:17am

    Toby, that PhD you claim to have, you must have bought on the internet for $5.99. When Einstein says “From the viewpoint of a Jesuit priest I am, of course, and have always been an atheist”, what do you think that means?

    What’s more important is that you seem desperate to defend the existence of a god by any means, including silly insults. What’s new? We get you kind in here all the time…. and I don’t think you’re a fool, you have demonstrated that all by yourself.

    I notice on another thread, anyone that disagrees with you is the “same person”. Seems to me that the only PhD you’ll see is on the doctor’s wall when you go for therapy for schizophrenia. Good luck with that.

  42. Adrian T and Will Dublin, nice post gentlemen. At least someone is making sense.

    Toby, spiteful and hateful religions and people that support them are ten a penny in here. Even if the most important scientists in history are god believes, which we have seen to the most part its usually religious propaganda to say they were, it means absolutely nothing other than you are desperate to spread your lies in here. Please, don’t let us keep you.

  43. I have two words to say:

    “Well done”.

    He’s trying and that’s a lot mroe than most of us would do.

  44. @ Linda. Why would you commend AdrianT’s comment? Toby revealed AdrianT was repeating what a religious fundamentalist thinks; and his opinions are bigoted lies. And as for commending Will, I’ve watched him bullying others. Whilst at the same time trying to make out he is an educated genius. He is as nasty as all the religious people he condemns. Very ugly character. As someone who works in mental health, I know that suggesting someone else is a schizophrenic, when they show no signs of shizophrenia (as Will has done on other comments) is pretty low. And his other attacks are personal and hurtful. I don’t see anywhere that his nemesis Toby has been so rude, or hateful.

    @Will. Do you really think if we live in this glorious age of science and reason that you yearn for, that the world will be a better place? Religion doesn’t cause hate, or bigotry. It’s just an excuse for it. Perhaps you will turn on science, when science becomes the new religion and begins to be used to justify the bigoted man’s hate of homosexuals. And quite why yourself and Toby are arguing over a man who contributed towards inventing a bomb which wiped out 250,000 people in 6 seconds, I have no idea. Einstein is part of the reason that we have lived in fear of nuclear annihilation for the last 50 years.

    @ Toby. If you want to continue being attacked then continue leaving comments on this site. Trying to change the ‘pink news’ bitterness and anger of some Pink News readers is a miracle that perhaps even Jesus wouldn’t have been able to manage though.

  45. Will Dublin 13 Dec 2010, 4:11pm

    Brian, thanks for that wonderful comment, much appreciated.

    Einstein did not invent the bomb, his research was used towards it. Very different. By your own flawed logic, all science can be rejected as “bad”, as it has the potential to do harm. In fact, Einstein is often regarded as the father of modern physics, so that computer that you use wouldn’t be here without his studies quantum theory. But by all means carry on believing what you want, including biased statements like “science as a religion”.

    I ignored the rest of your comments, if you can’t, or refuse, to see Toby’s insults on other threads when someone disagrees with him, that’s your problem.

    And by the sound of the rest of own comments, you could do with a healthy dose of your own medicine.

  46. I never said Einstein invented the bomb. Don’t misquote me. I would provide quotes (as I know you love quotes) showing that Einstein urged Roosevelt to make the bomb (based on science he had discovered), but I really have better things to do with my time.

  47. Will Dublin 13 Dec 2010, 4:51pm

    “but I really have better things to do with my time.”

    But not pressing enough for you to launch a tirade of abuse. Thank you, you’re just want this site needs more of.

    Oh, and I will take the time to quote, despite your bitchy little insults:

    “I have always condemned the use of the atomic bomb against Japan.” (Otto Nathan & Heinz Norden, editors, “Einstein on Peace”, pg. 589)

  48. Brian, with respect, you’re wrong about Will being a bully. He’s not. He frequently engages in patient and courteous discussion with those who hold opposing views to his own. I don’t see why AdrianT’s posts annoyed you either really. He wrote politely and intelligently.

    We’re all entitled to our opinion and I’m sure we all try to express it respectfully, but no-one has endless patient if they’re being pushed and provoked as sometimes happens on PN when fundies visit to cause trouble.

    NB – Toby, I am NOT saying YOU are a fundie. My above comment was a general one.

  49. Well Brian, I have to disagree with you there. While Will might have a particular cynicism in addressing people, and I do not always agree with his comments, I have always found his comments intellectually based, which is more then I can say for Toby. I find it ironic in the highest that you would accuse someone of bullying, when you yourself do the same with your comments. I might add Linda is entitled to what she thinks too. So is everyone else. But that does not mean they are right in a factual sense. Toby has regularly come in here with comments that may not be entirely factual and at the first sign of someone disagreeing with him, he launches himself at them. I have read over Will’s comment on his initial response to Toby, and it makes perfect sense to me. It was neither insulting or bullying as you say, but factual. You saying otherwise is of some curiosity.

  50. Iris and James, thank you for your comments, its much appreciated. James, I’ll take note of what you said for future reference, perhaps my comments are too acerbic…. the problem with having a sarcastic sense of humour I guess, nothing more sinister than that.

    Brian, if Toby feels victimised, then by all means I will apologise to him for that.

    However, that does not change the fact he was wrong in his assertions, and his views are those usually used by Christian right wing individual to dispel evolution and other facts, including the right of gay people to exist. He does not have to agree with me, but at the very least, make an effort to address in kind.

  51. @Will…

    ….er…I wouldn’t change at thing, pal…

    You’re doing alright.. :D

  52. Its fairly obvious to me that Brian and Toby are the same person, the vitriol they use against Will is almost identical.

    To Will:- your posts are just fine the way they are, mate. They’re smart and clever. And when you do get “acerbic” they’re very funny. They make me laugh, but maybe that just makes me a freak too :) As jonpol just said, you’re doing alright.

  53. All these comments just because Toby can’t debate with civility. I’m impressed.

    To Brian, I thought Adrian T’s points were well made. Is that a problem for you? If Toby gets it wrong, and we’re all human after all, then to point that out is not “bigoted lies” as you put it. I quite like Adrian’s comments, they’re insightful. And on that point, I find your comments to others on this site offensive and crude, particularly towards Will in Dublin. It seems I’m not the only one. Unless you have something constructive or challenging to add, then I see no reason for me to defend my comments to you Brian. My comments stand as they are.

  54. Is this still going on? And so much defending from all the haters.

    Linda, what exactly did I get wrong? AdrianT said the bible was written by palestinians and that the bible told you to hate Jews, and you think that’s a good point made? It was written by the palestinians arch rivals, the israelites, and it is a Jewish book, so why would it tell you to hate Jews?

    btw, I think when I suggested Will had multiple names on another thread he suggested I was a schizophrenic? So be careful Dave. Although because you agree with him, I suspect you’re fine.

    And Will…. “However, that does not change the fact he was wrong in his assertions, and his views are those usually used by Christian right wing individual to dispel evolution and other facts, including the right of gay people to exist.”
    ………what exactly are you going on about? What have I said that is used by the christian right wing? And I am not wrong in my assertions. All I have suggested is that all the greatest scientists in history who have come up with important theories have either believed in, or CONTEMPLATED THE IDEA OF GOD. That is true. Wether you like it or not. Not only scientists, but writers, musicians, artists. You may want to take the essence of spirit or god out of life, so you can, as you said on another thread, ‘go and colonise the solar system’. (Why would you want to take over the entire solar system?)

    Religions do a lot of bad in the world, but they also do a lot of good. Will, you may live a life where you don’t need a religion, a belief in a spiritual life, a belief in an afterlife, a belief in a moral code that helps you through life. And neither do I, but a lot of people do. And whilst I may not be a christian, I know how it gets others through some very dark times.
    Science does a lot of good in the world, but it also does a lot of bad too. And don’t be deluded to think that when we get rid of monotheism, and rationalism takes over that the LGBT quest for equality and understanding will finally be achieved. Hate is not caused by religion or science. Will thinks that religion is bad, and that science is good. But both science and religion can be used to justify hate. Neither is good, and neither is bad. That is my only point. I just don’t look forward to when the homophobes become scientists. You think the religious homophobes are bad. Just wait to see what the scientists have in store for us.

    What makes me laugh though is that you lot gang up on me, as if Will’s this nice guy, who doesn’t launch at people with a tirade of abuse. The only reason I’ve left a comment is because he was attacking others with a tirade of abuse. I’ll take Linda’s very ‘civil’ advice and leave, although I am not spreading lies. Will’s bullying has succeeded. (And Iris, I hope you don’t let your school children call one another schizophrenics when one of them feels threatened by another – that’s bullying in my eyes)

  55. Well Toby, I’m sorry that you see everyone here as “haters”, a difficult position to come from to win over people, isn’t it? I assure you, I have encountered Iris and Adrian T here before, and they are anything but haters. In fact both of them in particular have made me change a lot of how I look at things, they are both rational and very intelligent people. And I speak from my experience of them in here. As for me being a “bully”, think you’re on your own on that one…. its called projecting.

    But lets clear up some things, you seem compelled to seek clarification, and I am happy to give you that.

    “Just wait to see what the scientists have in store for us.”

    Sorry, this is just a paranoid view of science. Science doesn’t have anything “in store” for us, other than to help us understand the world around us. But when people, usually religions people with biased agendas, cherry pick pieces and titbits of scientific study to defend their position, that’s when it gets “bad”. Science is merely the application of logic, it is not “out to get us”, as you maintain. I say this because I have taken the time to educate myself in this area (and I make no apologies to you or anyone for that), I suggest you do too.

    “greatest scientists in history who have come up with important theories have either believed in, or CONTEMPLATED THE IDEA OF GOD.”

    While they “may” have contemplated, they did not necessarily believe in god. I have already shows you the statistics on this. This is a mute point, as its irrelevant. They certainly did not make their discoveries BECAUSE they might have believed in god.

    “and it is a Jewish book, so why would it tell you to hate Jews?”

    The bible, or the new testament, has parts that are, and have been, arguably used to defend attacks on Jews. Adrian T is right in this. For many years the Catholic church used the “christ killers” as an excuse to victimise Jews. Such passages include:- “Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets” (Matthew 23:30) and “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell… thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee” – Matthew 23:33. Hitler himself mentioned the same, “In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison.” – Hitler, in a speech on 12 April 1922

    In fact, I can find a passage in the bible that supports murder, rape, cannibalism, genocide…. you name it, and I can find a “valid” reason to do it from the bible. That is what Adrian T was referring to. The bible is a collection of contradictory and quite frankly, bizarre, stories that one can use to do just about anything.

    “Science does a lot of good in the world, but it also does a lot of bad too”

    No, it doesn’t. People use the results of science to do bad things. It in itself is not an entity that is culpable. But you have already alluded to that in your comment.

    “Will thinks that religion is bad, and that science is good”

    No, that is an insulting simplification, and I think we have already covered why.

    What amazes me is because you have some “essence of spirit or god out of life”, then we all have to. Sorry, but that’s not the case. Believe what you want, but don’t expect others not to put that under scrutiny. And is certainly not a valid reason for accepting the dark ages, they were a shameful episode in humanity’s history, as with all times where theocratic dogma imposed oppression of learning and discovery.

    “(Why would you want to take over the entire solar system?)”

    This is a stupid statement. Sorry, but it is. Why would you go to the moon? Why discover America? Why would you invent the wheel? Not everyone is as insular in their world view, Toby.

    Just a point, if everyone “gangs up on you” as you put it, then maybe there is something in YOUR attitude that needs fixing, rather than playing the victim card. And I would suggest you go educate yourself on science, maybe then you wouldn’t have such an insular view of it.

  56. Toby Comment: “Just wait to see what the scientists have in store for us.”

    Brian’s Comment: “Perhaps you will turn on science, when science becomes the new religion”

    Is it too much of a coincidence that both Brian and Toby have this view that science is something out to get us? I think not.

    I think Dave is on to something, its clear to me that Toby decided to invent the alter ego of “Brian” to defend himself when he couldn’t by himself. Childish? Perhaps.

    To Will: God bless (no pun intend) your patience with this one, you’re comments are far more civil than mine would be after listening to the anger and insults coming out of Toby/Brian! Great last comment, but I think you’re done here.

  57. “Great last comment, but I think you’re done here.”

    You might be right there, Linda. In another thread our erudite friend Toby said he likes to “laugh hysterically” at comments (his words). I suspect he has that reaction to anyone that supports a different view of science that he does. Anyway, you can only bring a horse to water… and I suspect this horse too intransigent and too inflexible, not to mention the fits of “hysterical laughter” that over take him from time to time, to be able to drink :)

  58. That is different approach to the matter. Good on him and good luck as well. Would be interesting to hear him and to hear reactions of the “believers”.

  59. Toby, I always try to see both sides of any disagreement and err on the side of caution. However, your first comment here was somewhat confrontational which may have led to the tone of some of the replies to you. I don’t consider it bullying – more of a misunderstanding on both sides.

    Will’s amended his tone, which I believe was making you feel picked upon even though he’s commonly cynical as others have confirmed for you here, and he’s taken the time to responded courteously to points you made and to give examples of things that you disbelieved when they were initially raised. I know you’ve elaborated a little on your points in your last post but there’s no need to leave if you have something further to say.

    I don’t know if you’ve posted on PN before but you seem to have a preconceived idea of people here which surprises me. Again, a misunderstanding maybe? You don’t need to prove yourself here. I’m sure that no-one bears you ill will. Why not try again and see that most people aren’t as bad as you think?

  60. This man is not a true Christian because his views are going against the infallible word of God.

  61. ….damn shame I didn’t see this discussion going at the time!

    Toby – Newton, Copernicus and countless thinkers through the century believed in god. So what? Newton was an alchemist. Shall we throw away our chemistry books?
    Darwin was a Christian and creationist until he looked at the masses of evidence (see John Gribbin’s excellent biography of him, ‘a life in science’). His discoveries, notably the way wasp larvae eat their paralysed prey alive from within, and the death of his daughter destroyed his faith. They are to be excused, after all, until 1859, the best explanation around would have been William Paley’s ‘natural theology’. Until that time, people had an excuse. Now, 151 years agter ‘Origin of Species’, after the findings of Hubble and the DNA code, great thinkers do not.

    Brian – grow a thicker skin. If you can’t take the heat, run along and make us all a cup of tea or something, and leave the discussion to the big boys.

    de Villiers – again, we have better information about the universe. Aristotle would hold his head high in an ethics class. But a five year old would be able to astound him on the knowledge of the solar system alone. We stand on the shoulders of giants. We know what causes hurricanes and supernovae and earthquakes and black deaths. We know about microbes. natural explanatoins have replaced supernatural ones since then – the heavens get emptier all the time. Don’t need to wade through Kant to reach that conclusion.
    (‘Discipline’ of theology? contradiction in terms)

    On ‘fundamentalist atheist’ – look, I’m willing to change my opinions. But extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The second coming of the supposed Jesus of Nazareth televised in the middle of Match of the Day, or at the emirates Stadium to a full crowd of spectators would suffice.

    I’m not being a bigot. You seem to say, believe what I say based on no evidence. I will not respect that. I suspect it deeply, and I’m not going to let any of you ringfence your precious little beliefs. Get used to defending yourselves without whining about ‘hurt feelings’ because – I don’t give two hoots about them!

    BIg kiss xxx

    A.

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