“I know for a fact that many devout christians, such as the ones I work rest and play with on a daily basis, are truly wonderful, kind hearted men and women…” despite their religious beliefs.
Religious people believe that the bible, torah or koran is the word of ‘god’.
These people are unreasonable and irrational.
Someone voted this down.
Yet whoever did so will be unable to explain how someone who believes that a work of fiction is the word of ‘god’ can EVER be described as reasonable.
When children grow up they stop believing in Father Christmas.
It’s terrifying that educated people claim to believe in an a;;-powerfui ‘god’ (especially as he’s such a murderous @$$hole.
I for one would vote it down.
The Bible in itself is not a bad thing, and I think in many ways it can teach people how to lead decent, honest and morally upright lives.
However, many choose to interpret what is said in their own way, so don’t attack the writings, attack those that twist the words and the spread this gospel to others, they are the true sinners.
What you all seem to miss is that religion, society and all we know is just part of life and death. Components of the rich tapestry of life. We fixate on things as humans because we like to belong to something. It gives us a sense of purpose. We latch onto music, religion, art and everything else you can think of and sink our lives and belief into it them to make sense of this crazy, dangerous world we inhabit. But you know what we are just elevated animals who’s purpose is no more than to survive, to bread and to die. Sad I know, an awful waste you might say but the plain truth of it! Enjoy what you have, tolerate each others ways and have a ball whilst your able. Life is a gift but not from “God” or anything else. It is a gift from your biological parents. See life for what it is and stop hoping that it has some alternative meaning, greater purpose or spiritual hiatus. Just be nice to one another, be assertive to those who disrespect you and fight those who would harm you & yours
I bet God made you say that. ;)
The crazed, vile christian bigots who wished death on George Michael are as reasonable as the more mainstream christians,
ANYBODY who believes that works of fiction like the bible, koran or torah (which were all written thousands of years ago to give meaning to the lives of desert dwelling illiterate peasants) is the word of ‘God’ is irrational though.
I find it very amusing to see people saying ‘The Westboro Baptist Church’ are not real christians.
They are as christian as the quakers though. The Westboro Baptist church use the same fictional book for their beliefs.
Why their bigotted interpretation is less valid than the quakers interpretation, confuses me.
If you believe that a work of fiction is the word of some mythical ‘god’ then are you are irrational and beyond reason.
As George rightly says there are some wonderful, supportive and honourable Christians …
Some groups including Christians for a Moral America (what an oxymoron!) are despicable, bigoted and blind to reality …
We need to condemn and confront the actions of hate groups such as Christians for a Moral Amercia and the Christian Institute and expose them for what they are …
However, we need to take care to not veer in hate ourselves towards people of faith … we can pretend we are not with a veneer of claiming it is about “unreasonable and irrational belief systems” but that argument completely fails when there are Christians who strongly believe in equality for LGBT people … we can even say they don’t speak up enough, but recent LGBT press has had many examples of Christian allies … we could even go further and say the groups are too small (well I think minorities matter) …
The campaign for equality (of whatever sort) is not advanced by vilifyting allies …
The Church of England won’t bless civil partnerships. The CoE will not allow civil partnerships on their premises. CoE priests are only allowed celibate same sex relationships. Gay sex is a sin for which, they believe, god will judge.
At least they are not as bad as the Muslims that want all gays dead.
Homophobia is almost entirely driven by religious origins.
You are right some Church of England people hold the views you say, somne do not ..
Some other Christian denominations actually hold completely opposite views to those you ,mention and strongly support LGBT equality …
Homophobia and religion are not necessarily mutually inclusive …
Homophobes do not always have a faith
People of faith are not always homophobic
If we do not grasp that, then we can not respond smartly to bigotry against us … we adopt an intransigent position that is blinkered to views other than the polar opposites … We condemn allies and we lose the argument …
We need to be smarter …
I state the views of THE Church of England. The official religion of ENGLAND. Our head of state is the head of the CoE. The CoE has unelected representatives in the House of Lords and therefore has power over our legislation. No other Christian organisation has these privileges.
The views of the Church of England are simple: ir professes the faith uniquely revealed in the Holy Scriptures, set forth in the Catholic Creeds, and to which its historic formularies, The Book of Common Prayer and the Thirty-nine Articles of Religion, bear witness. That’s what I accepted when I was ordained, and it gives me no difficulty in being a sexually active gay priest whilst keeping to my ordination vows.
I’m intrigued how many people seem to know so much more than my Church, but all they have is a caricature with which to beat it, and, by extension, me.
And the reasons for this are far too complex to explain in so many words. Unfortunately even the offical position is by no means the most widespread. There are many within the Church of England who would welcome civil partnerships and are proponents of equality legislation, however there are many within the powerful Evangelical wing of the church who because of traditional belief oppose the enabling of such rights. Due to the popularity of Evangelical parishes, the Church is unwilling to alienate them because of the revenue they continue to contribute.
Of course this is coming from a loony liberal (Anglican) catholic, so I could either be being cynical or just paranoid.
Firstly, lets be clear there should be a total separation of church and state – there should not be an established church nor should there be automatic representation in either of the two Houses of parliament of religious leaders …
However, then using the views of the Church of England officially and extrapolating that these are then the views of “Christians” is simplistic and not looking at things rationally or smartly. There are many Church of England leaders who hold different views to those which are the official policy of the CofE, and many more members who strongly oppose those policies that you mention – some of them very vocally. Also, there are many other denominations and members of other denominations who are very LGBT supportive.
We need to look at this smartly and not fix our own mindset on religion as meaning one thing and one thing only with regards LGBT issues … there are a spectrum of views on homosexuality in religious circles …
Religious moderates enable religious extremists.
Let’s just ignore all religions, they have nothing unique or interesting to say about anything.
I suggest you go and re-read my comments – no where do I say ignore religions …
In fact, to help you I will cut and paste a couple of comments I have made which say the exact opposite of the words you seem to have missed in my comments:
“We need to condemn and confront the actions of hate groups such as Christians for a Moral Amercia and the Christian Institute and expose them for what they are …”
“Lets work together to expose the idiocy of the CI and CFAMA … “
The Church of England wouldn’t even marry the heir to the throne; the hierarchy is just as deeply dysfunctional as their catholic counterparts.
The Cult of England is an irrational cult.
Why would you expect them to behave in a ratrional manner.
They believe in a mythical sky-fairy.
Given the spectrum of belief that exists in many areas of life – be that theological, political, arts, economic etc etc – there not a set prescription of what a Christian (or even what a member of the Church of England) does or does not individually (or even collectively in smaller groups) believe …
Many of them may have an ideology that you and I find irrational, but that does not mean their views on all matters is irrational. Many either support LGBT people and do not share the views of other Chrstians interpretation of the Bible that homosexuality is a sin. Many are LGBT themselves.
You may say (it is your usual quip) that these are small in number – that is your subjective view. I suspect the number of those who support (and the increased number of stories endorsing Christians supporting LGBT issues would tend to suggest this) is larger – my view is also subjective.
I don’t believe in communism, I believe it is dysfunctional and wrong. That does not mean that …
… either an individual communist or a small group of communists can not have reasonable ideas about various issues. I could probably support them about some issues. That does not mean I support communists – no I ally with particular individuals or groups on particular issues.
In the same way me need to act smarter with religious issues …
Great to see George improving – evidenced in part by him making direct comments again … and I hope it he continues to recover and rests when needed …
Lets work together to expose the idiocy of the CI and CFAMA … lets not be simplistic and give wide brush strokes indicating that all Christians are the same … lets welcome our allies … lets not become caught in the trap of hating another group of people (some of whom are gay and others who support us)
Gay people can be bigoted too … lets not be bigoted gay people; but lets be strong and confront those who are consumed by hate and against us. We need to be smart in how we act and realise that a one size fits all response to these issues is not realistic, honest or reasonable.
I don’t hate religious people but they do hold “unreasonable and irrational belief systems”
They can believe what they like as far as I am concerned, however when that “belief” tries to impose itself on secular life a line must be drawn.
This is when they bleat “freedom of religion” and deem themselves as victims of “PC gone mad”.
Its time they realised that their belief is theirs and theirs alone.
I agree with you Dr Guthrie … and even in some circumstances I will be prepared to discuss their different views on ideology, in the same way I would discuss different political views over dinner, a coffee etc …
However, I also believe we are moving to a point where we are losing sight of who the conflict is really with …
Those Christians who are in the CI or CFAMA etc need vilification and exposing …
Those who support us (including not believing that we are sinful by being gay, encouraging equality etc etc) have a different mindset on some issues but support LGBT people. I can support some politicians on some issues even though they are fromn a different political persuasion to me, thats responding smartly to issues (in my view). It disappoints me that many LGBT people do not react smartly and see religion as a red flag to the bull and presume it is anti-gay. It might be (and if it is we should confront it) but it might not …
I tend to agree, however you must admit that the numbers of those pro LGBT Christians denouncing their comrades in faith who decry us are very small in number.
I do agree there may be a smaller number of Christians who are supportive … but I would add a few comments to this …
Firstly, just because they are a small number does not mean either they do not matter as allies or that their voice is not significant (and can be deterred by an apparent automatically negative reaction from within some elements of LGBT communities). Minorities matter after all.
Secondly, there have been several examples in the LGBT media in the past few weeks and months where Christians (some in contradiction to their own denomination) have publically endorsed either full LGBT equality or addressed aspects of equality that many of us would agree with … This vocal support needs to be encouraged …
Thirdly, I am not convinced that the number is as small as some suggest it may be … not sure how we effectively deternmine the true number, its a subjective view on both sides … but my perception is the number is larger than perceived.
That can be viewed as the same sort of argument that those homophobic Christians use when they say they love the sinner but hate the sin …
Some would say you are saying you don’t like their faith, but you like some of the people …
I understand that when a reasoned debate is had (and where this considers the philosophical view points of different views) that one needs to be able to say that anothers view is perceived as unreasonable and irrational … but equally, does this matter with those Christians who do not accept homosexuality is a sin, wish equality including completely equal marriage and actually support LGBT people … Surely their philosophical differences then are very much like political differences – I find some extreme right wing people unreasonable and irrational, but that is their view and it is something we can debate on …
Above was directed at Matt
Religion is a result of indoctrination, nobody was ever born religious. Homosexuality is innate.
I don’t like ‘faith’ in anything. I like reason and evidence. Faith is belief in something despite all the evidence saying it’s not true.
The religious believer seldom stops at just holding beliefs, they are often to be found trying to affect the behaviour of others, using their irrational beliefs as justification.
You are seeing things in black and white … things in terms of belief systems are rarely so polarised … There is a spectrum of belief in a range of belief areas – religious, political, scientific, cultural etc
I suggest you engage in some sociological study; I particularly recommend:
Sociology: understanding a diverse society
By Margaret L. Andersen, Howard Francis Taylor
There is an element of faith in science. Some areas are uncertain and based on assumptions – thats why there is more research … there is faith in these assumptions (albeit a different kind of faith).
it seems to me that most militant atheists are characterised not just by an absence of belief in a god, but by a trust in science so certain and ardent that it is entirely akin to religious belief — and a highly devoted, if not fanatical, one at that.
No, they say, these are not matters of belief. These are facts. Science says so. (Never mind that what looks to scientists like a fact in one era …
… frequently turns out to appear an error in another.)
Let me say I prefer to make decisions and judgements based on evidence rather than eminence.
I remain cautiously agnostic and err more towards atheism.
The militant atheists worry me as much as the fundamentalists in the likes of the CI. The fact each side are so blinkered that they can not conceive the damage they cause leads to a scenario whereby allies are lost and hate is perpetated – because of both sides.
@stu science is not a religion. A scientist will gladly and willingly change his/her mind based on available evidence. The faithful hold on to their beliefs despite the evidence.
For some questions there are absolute answers. There is an absolute lack of evidence for God. I very well understand how religion affects society in good and bad ways. This does not prove the existence of god. Sincere belief is not evidence.
Their own “good book” calls on them to spread the “word”.
I would be much happier if they just kept it to themselves.
I have never said science is a religion, in fact suggesting that is a vacuous argument – science can be perceived as an anti-religion.
What I said was many scientists have faith in assumptions. I also went on to imply that when research is continued they may amend their faith dependent on what the new research does or does not demonstrate (or retain it perhaps if the research does not provide an adequate answer – thus remaining faithful to the assumption). Nonetheless, other processes may have been built on the assumption – and have continued with faith in that assumption. Those processes may or may not require revisiting dependent on the impact.
An example is the recent query over the speed of light which has led to some scientists arguing that some theories and assumptions need reexamining.
You continue to stick to your position, which is your right, but fail to address the issue of a spectrum of belief or the rationality of approach that some Christians have on LGBT …
… issues. You seem to prefer to promulgate a view that religion = irrational, irrational = bad, religion = homophobic … and whilst I would agree that religion is irratonal, I would not and could not agree that this means every perception, thought, belief or approach of a religious person is automatically irrational or bad or homophobic. In the same way that some people of a different political persuasion to me may share my views on a particular issue.
….anyone who believes in deities simply cannot be called rational as such irrationality colors his/her entire thinking.
So are you saying, that no religious person can ever make a single rational decison?
Because if you are, then you are as bad as those bigots we condemn for condemnation of our orientation …
….I’m saying that religious belief is irrational, Period. How that make me a bigot escapes me. I was born gay. Religious people made the decision to believe in fairy tales. Make of that what you will but no one can say that religious belief is rational unless you alone know something the rest of humanity doesn’t, Stu?
I have not disputed or disagreed that, in my opinion, religious belief is irrational …
You seem to ignore my question, so I shall ask it again …
Are you saying, that no religious person can ever make a single rational decison?
Matt: Religion: “anything to which one is totally devoted and which rules one’s life.”
Having seen the attitudes of some, such as Richard Dawkins, they are as just as extreme in the opposite direction. I actually find them quite embarrassing.
As horrendously annoying and damaging as religious extremists can be … so, can some of those anti-religious zealots …
Their views get so polarised and blinkered (whichever side of the argument) that a measured and factual debate is totally eroded by their bias.
“[W]e need to take care to not veer in hate ourselves towards people of faith…” And why not? Even the Westboro Baptist church?! They are, after all, a minority group! We will never win the cretinous god-suckers over, sorry, people of faith – a few good people amongst these deluded sheep is hardly an ally worth counting on, they can’t help but pity and look down on us. So let’s love the person as an individual, by all means, but let’s hate-hate-hate their miserable, persecuting religion and whatever spin they put on the ‘sacred’ words.
@Mr Ripleys Asscrack …
I would regard WBC as of similar ilk to the CI and CFAMA who need determined and rigorous exposure for their bigotry and hatred.
However, by comparing my words on seeking caution to not alienate allies to WBC is disingenuous. WBC are never, ever going to be allies.
To quote someone else on PN recently when talking about another religious person:
“Tarring everyone with the same brush is the first defence of bigots.
Attacking someone for their religious beliefs is just as bad as attacking someone for their sexuality or race.
Stop following the stereotypes and judge each individual on their own merits.”
Clearly, there are good reasons for being concerned about WBC, CI, CFAMA etc … but that does not automatically extend to every Christian
Faith is a kind of cognitive illness but also for many homophobes faith provides a convenient disguise for their prejudice.
The debate on whether or not faith is a cognitive issue (be that impairment, illness or condition) is very much still in the balance – some research strongly endorses this view, other strongly rejects it and the vast majority of academic writing on the issue is unclear … I do err towards the neuro research which suggests there is a pattern in cogniscence that is prevalent in those who have faith – although the research itself does state that its conclusions should not be extrapolated too far without further study …
I do agree that some homophobes can either use religion as a disguise for their prejudice (some not even really believing the basic principles of their supposed faith) or become blinkered to other aspects of their faith which would not support their actions they propose based on their prejudice, probably because they are too consumed by their hatred and bigotry to take a step back and reflect on the consistency of their ideological view …
As Voltaire once stated: “If God don’t exist, man would have invented him.”
I live in Georgia, one of a number of states dominated by evangelicals.
For those in the UK and elsewhere, expect the sort of missives lobbed by such individuals.
Until the generation that is able to visibly distinguish ethics from mythology and absolutist ideology wherever it may be, expect this.
It doesn’t even surprise me, and excusing Christianity or Islam as an ideology that isn’t “totally bad” by way of at least “one true Christian” or “one true Muslim” – the same kind of reasoning (50 righteous men) that your deity used to determine whether Sodom and Gomorrah would be destroyed at his hand – does not help matters. At best, it tries to salvage the religion for its better parts – parts which should be dumped with the bathwater.
My problem isn’t with professional Abrahamic fundamental dogmatists – they’re living the dream of “God’s calling”. My problem is with those who excuse and apologize for the ideology of Abrahamism, or try to reform it to make it more palatable to us.
My problem is both the extremists in certain religions – eg Santorum, CI, CFAMA, Archbishop of Glasgow etc etc whose bigotry condemns LGBT people and seeks to dilute equality or prevent equality AND those LGBT people who fail to recognise the difference between dogmatic fundamentalists and allies – that loses us allies, makes those who support us less willing to speak out, and causes some in the LGBT communities to act with hatred themselves (which is the matter we are seeking to contain).
One form of hate does not justify another …
……Hear hear….. History will, in the far distant future prove you right and this era of mans folly will be regarded as the “dark ages” of the hatred mythology. The delicate shoots of reason are already beginning to show and I have no doubt that reason will in the end, out.
Even if science does prove (which I suspect in time it probably will … how much time is another matter) that religion is a neurological issue (of some sort), then that this is the case actually demonstrates that there will always be some people predisposed to religious belief. Thus the abandonment of religion is highly unlikely. In extreme cases the prevalence of some genuine cults (I think of the likes of Waco etc) demonstrates the propensity of some people to seek a higher authority, whether that be a crutch or for another reason. It is part of the rich tapestry of life. If we look at history there is a cicular expression of particular rellgious views (and for that matter political hues) – we may discourage something for a while, then a new generation comes along and reinvents the wheel. This includes belief systems.
“we may discourage something for a while, then a new generation comes along and reinvents the wheel. This includes belief systems.”
In which case we can wait for the misguided religious members to die off and let the younger generation reinvent religion, then there will be no more problems.
Religion HAS been changing throughout history. While the “official” beliefs of a denomination may take time to change, it’s a fact that they WILL change, but in the mean time, we should focus on finding those religious members who are not against LGBT rights, and indeed those who fully support them.
There is so much irony in people saying that there aren’t very many Christians (for example) who support LGBTs and that they don’t matter. After all, even if they are a small group of people that would make them a minority group, and surely we’re a minority group too? How can we expect rights to be given to us if we condemn other minorities as well?
I agree with most of what you say, Jimmy
We can only have legitimacy in our endeavour for equality if we respect others who have rights (including some competing rights, at times).
We need to nurture our allies, that includes gay religious people, LGBT supporting religious people, gay atheists, gay politicians, LGBT supporting media, agnostic LGBT people etc etc
I still find religion bizarre, irrational and without basis – but I recognise that others do not. I also recognise that those who do find religion supportive may not be an enemy of mine – they may be an ally I would be foolish not to cultivate
Hear hear, Rayne. It’s not about god or any such thing as imagined by these god-sucking leptons – it’s only ever been about the money. Money. Money. Even muslims have to pay their way. Money = power. And so long as the churches have the money rolling in, we will always have this idiotic Abrahamic religion and its cronies and freaks who claim to know and act for and speak for this thing/it/person. Religion has never helped anyone but itself, its church, and the person pretending to be its practitioner. I have sympathy for you, Rayne, you could always out-smart them by countering their pitiful arguments with logic and good humour.
you go george!!! so happy…u r getting better!! and sod it to all those christians who are actually “NOT CHRISTIAN” at all!!!…ha…ur true colors have shown themselves you fools!!…”REAL” christians pray for peace and love for all, no matter what…. !! The no 1 rule of the good book??? “DONT JUDGE”!!!…love and wishes to george getting back on his feet (and voice!!)..mel
“The Christians for Moral America blog lists liberals, atheists, gays, Muslims and feminists as the most dangerous anti-American groups of 2012.”
OMG! I made the top 5 three times!
Four, for me!
We’re doomed! Doomed, I tell ye..!!
Well, I say “good for you Michael!” Tell it how it is! I’ve read through many posts here, and one thing bothers me……why does Twitter allow this type of stuff to be attached to their name? I will boycott the use of Twitter seeing they allow this to occur.
I’m not a fan of George Michael and applaud his trying to turn his life around after the terrible trouble he has had in the past…but these peple are crazy and should ideally be shot into the sun or raped by wild animals for the disgusting things they come out with in the name of their “religion”.
Whilst I would not wish them physical harm I do think they have a duty (if what they believe is true) to turn themselves in for attempted murder so they can spend some time in a nice American jail. They may come out with a different view of sodomy.
“The Christian god is a three headed monster, cruel, vengeful, and capricious. If one wishes to know more of this raging, three headed beast-like god, one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him. They are always of two classes: fools and hypocrites.” Thomas Jefferson
I think this shows that either prayer does not work or that their god disagreed with them and did not want George to die.
I doubt very much that this will penetrate the zealous dogma of the wingnut fringe of the christian religion.
Well done George – don’t let the barstewards get you down.
There are a lot of hateful opinions on the blog site that prayed for George Michael’s death – everything but the mention of the name of Jesus, everything but a hint of christian kindness.
That’s really strange –
They claim to call themselves ‘Christians’ for Moral America. I call them the scum of a divided America , and its these far right faith groups, yes ,they are small in number, that so readily throw the dirt in your face, especially when your down, as George was! But hey! George survived…he pulled thru….he grows stronger and stronger! What happened to all that prayer? If there is a god…he rejected that prayer and threw it back in their face! Perhaps now their very own god will have vengence upon them!
Absolutely. We need to stand up to the far right faith groups (small in number – but loud in volume) … and it is fantastic that George is pulling through and responding with reasonableness and vigour.
…….CFAMA is a web page set up by the vile Keith after he got banned from the entire blogosphere. The content on its page has to be seen to be believed that any sane being could write such drivel. The man is clearly in need of a place in secure accommodation…..
What vile people, and stupid too – we learned people know that praying for anyone or anything is a total waste of breath and that religion is man-made trollop of the most heinous kind.
Good for you, George, glad you’re on the mend.
The CFAMA are completely vile …
Although gay, George Michael has expressed his Christianity through songa such as ‘You Gotta Have Faith’ and at the end of his ‘Outside’ video which celebrates al-fresco sex and sticks two fingers up at the LAPD for his arrest for indecency, a sign appears saying ‘Jesus Saves’ with the subtitle: ‘us all’.
Those Christian bigots form only a minority of the Christian faith but they are the most vocal. To see George Michael at his best go to:
Right Wing anti gay Christians are giving us good Christians a bad name. The Right Wing Christians are possessed by Satan and they do not even know it. Only Satan would be so evil as to pray for a persons death, no matter who. These anti gay Christians are no longer Christians but some kind of evil demons who practice voodoo. The Lord our God who is a loving God not a God of hate and destruction of his own people he made and loves, God will deal with these haters because God knows they are possessed by Satan.
And I daresay he’ll teach, learn and forgive them all the same. P et B.
You’re joking surely.
According to your own bible:
Deaths in the Bible attributable to God –
2,270,365 not including the victims of Noah’s flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, or the many plagues, famines, fiery serpents, etc because no specific numbers were given.
Deaths in the Bible attributable to Satan -
Not a very loving god is he.
Well if you really want to be looking at the Bible, you should consider that Satan is the one who brought sin into the world. Had Adam and Eve not eaten the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, then there would have been no deaths at all. However, Satan tempted them to eat the fruit, and so brought sin into the world through our flawed humanity. Satan therefore brought death into the world, meaning he is responsible for every single death in our world.
Deaths in the Bible attributed to God – 0
Deaths in the Bible attributed to Satan – All others
Had Satan not brought sin into the world, there would have been no deaths.
…and if Romulus and Remus had not been nurtured by a she-wolf, there would be no Rome today….
Its not funny though,but i can’t stop laughing..lol!.. How was the prayer said, maybe..”God take away micheal’s life.. In jesus name?” well, Christ gives us life… This so called ‘Christians’ are making all other christians and indeed christianity look stupid and ignorant… The real God dosen’t kill gays.. But he rather ends the life and campaigns of some bigots such as Bachmaan… Go Goerge!! Good to see u smile again…
Much like “bad apples”, don’t let the few ruin the taste of the many. Most Christians would only with George a quick recovery!
Have a super day everyone!
Get well, George. :) I don’t pray, but I’m thinking of you and wishing you well.
George is one of the first celebs that I had a crush on as a little girl (Wham! days), and I still think he’s a hot and talented man, and wish for his happiness and health.
Religious beliefs of whatever faith/culture seem to enjoy bartering, or making a bid with their god…
I already know what Jesus will say/do.