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He declared something else I agree with!!

Pope Francis: 'Inequality Is The Root Of Social Evil'
As Unreligious as I am, he occasionally tingles my heart and soul:) And that pleases me.

The Pontiff’s warning comes months after he called unfettered capitalism “a new tyranny” and urged global leaders to fight growing income inequality in his first major written work as pope.

He laid out the platform for his papacy in the 84-page document last November, attacking the “idolatry of money” and calling on politicians to guarantee all citizens “dignified work, education and healthcare.”

Hopefully, those hard-edged Haters who profess to be Xtians will HEAR HIM this time and stop the Them vs Us CRAP!!


Originally posted to roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 04:47 AM PDT.

Also republished by Street Prophets and Anglican Kossacks.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (120+ / 0-)

    "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

    "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

    by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 04:47:30 AM PDT

  •  Pretty much the standard papal teaching since (20+ / 0-)

    Leo XIII's great social encyclical Rerum Novarum of 1891.

    Francis though does get the message across with his own special brand of personal charm and affability.

    We're shocked by a naked nipple, but not by naked aggression.

    by Lepanto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:01:59 AM PDT

    •  I have to disagree with that (16+ / 0-)

      What the church has taught since 1891 is that it is entitled to maximize the gold flowing into the coffers of the church at the expense of the poor.

      Take BCCI and the Papal banking scandal as one instance. The corruption of the Vatican since 1891 has surpassed that of the Period when the church was controlled by the Borgias. Greed, Sex, Vanity the crimes of the Papacy are legendary.

      What the church has taught since 1891 is that it is entitled to control the rites of passage of everyone on the planet, birth, marriage, certification for employment, and death. Just its polices on Birth Control and Abortion alone have created untold misery, not to mention its medieval attitude toward women as second class citizens

      What the church has taught since 1891 is that it is entitled to back ruthless dictators who since 191 have massacred millions in order to stop godless communism.

      What the church has taught since 1891 is that it is entitled to provide sanctuary to pedophile priests.

      When we compare the pronouncements of Pope Francis with the pronouncements of other popes since 1891, we have to wonder if he isn't creating a new religion, one that actually cares about people and not just wealth and power.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 07:22:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  He is not creating a new religion. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        protectspice, pvasileff, codairem

        He is managing the same old system, but trying to put a pretty face on it.

        •  He is changing the old system fundamentally (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I can as the next poster suggests, imagine the old well entrenched Chris Matthews style opus dei that is soley focused on the accumulation of power and earthly treasures being given the boot.

          Its like crossing out or painting over a graffiti tag by a gangster with the inference this entity exists no longer.

          I'm not sure exactly how a Jesuit Francis convinced a living opus dei Pope backed by 100,000 some odd secretive opus dei to give up power but I'm sure the speculations have some unvoiced consensus.

          What he seems to be gradually working toward is a new design for religion that will worship manifest goodness in this existence rather than rebirth, renewal and reward for patience and faith in some other plane of existence tolerating whatever evil is thought necessary for the opus dei to accumulate treasure.

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:35:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sorry, but this makes no sense to me. (0+ / 0-)
            •  I'm not a believer let alone a Catholic (0+ / 0-)

              I'm somewhat aghast at what religions do in the way of crusades, inquisitions, the burning of heretics and witches, and in my lifetime the scandals of financial irregularities and the institutionalized homosexual pedophilia in the Catholic Church.

              If you watched any part of the Borgia's TV series you must realize that such scandalous behavior is nothing new.

              There has long been a range of thought in the church as to what is right and proper and at both extremes people engaged in practices that are rather different than the approach Francis has chosen,

              To my layman's eye the difference is striking enough to be compared to other schisms resulting in new religions.

              As other posters have pointed out there is a rather secretive, somewhat autonomous cabal of not necessarily traditional Catholics called Opus Dei which some claim is about 100,000 strong in the church and of a somewhat different motivation than the Jesuits rather in the same way Republicans are of a somewhat different motivation from progressive Democrats.


              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:40:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well that's a bit clearer, but (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                I would have to disagree with the view that Francis is something different. He just offers a new approach to the office of Pope by hiring a PR team (including a former Fox news reporter) who have helped in put on a pretty face to deflect attention from the pedophilia issues and give the general impression of change without it really happening.
                Plus the changes he has made has only consolidated his power with the Vatican Bank, but not guaranteed any real reform (again just an appearance of reform).  Just look at the response the Vatican made to the UN report on child abuse. It was denial and defensiveness.  No change there.

                •  Interesting (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  Usually I'm the skeptic.

                  I had been seeing it as Francis is doing some jawboning that gets ordinary Catholics thinking more positively about laying off on the pro life anti abortion and anti birth control rhetoric and actually considering that there may some faults to the church that it would be good to remedy.

                  You take him as a politician, in the cringe worthy House of Cards sense, "denial and defensiveness". I really hadn't given enough thought to positive Papal PR being used to deflect attention from the systematic pedophilia problem,

                  I know that we have all been aware of how serious the issue is for decades now and there still is no commitment for the church to take the gloves off when dealing with priests.

                  Here's Francis pronouncement on pedophilia.

                  Francis rejects any connection between celibacy and pedophilia: “The idea that celibacy produces paedophiles can be forgotten,” he says. “If a priest is a paedophile, he is so before he becomes a priest. But when this happens you must never look away. You cannot be in a position of power and use it to destroy the life of another person.”He proposes taking a hard line against those priests credibly accused of abuse: “I think that is the solution that was once proposed in the United States; of switching them to other parishes,” he says. “That is stupid, because the priest continues to carry the problem in his backpack.” The only answer to the problem, he adds, is zero tolerance.Another Hopeful Sign". 2013-03-16. Retrieved 2013-08-17.

                  Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                  by rktect on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 12:02:18 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  You are correct, sir (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          vcmvo2, kamarvt, Ahianne, Lepanto
          He is not creating a new religion.
          You are right on that, but I would word it that the pope is trying to revive the faith, the Biblical faith, that the Apostolic Christian religion is founded on. You know, the one that so many willingly died for in the pre-Constantinian days.

          That Apostolic faith had a beautiful face on it, and heart as deep as the center of the earth.

          You meet them halfway with love, peace, and persuasion ~ And expect them to rise for the occasion...

          by paz3 on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:08:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  More Christians were slaughterd by Christians (0+ / 0-)

            in the Pre-Constantinian days than by pagans or governments (source for this info is History of Civilization by Will and Ariel Durant).   Read the history of this movement.  It was NOT all peace and light before they hitched their star to the Roman government. There was a couple hundred years of "weeding out" Christian sects that had differing views of the writings/philosophies of the Christ cults.

            The cults in Rome that gained the most power fought with the outlying groups over the nature of "Jesus" and the idea of the trinity.  It was not a "beautiful face".

      •  The big and beneficial difference (8+ / 0-)

        between Pope Francis and his recent descendants in the papacy is that he is a Jesuit.  The Opus Dei wing at the Vatican had been in power for several decades which appeared neocon and judgmental instead of forgiving and helping others.

    •  He's pushing social teachings to forefront and (22+ / 0-)

      thankfully, pushing the pelvic issues to the background.   That's a major change in and of itself.  Plus, as was noted below, he has already made some critical personnel decisions that clearly show a change in direction.

      Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

      by RFK Lives on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 07:30:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  if he means it (8+ / 0-)

        it's time for him to start proving it.

        The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

        by Laurence Lewis on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 07:52:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Pushing the pelvic issues into the (0+ / 0-)

        background?   Maybe, but he's not CHANGING the church's stance on those issues.

        •  It's the Pelvic Thrust that really drives you (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          snoopydawg, LeftOfYou, Ice Blue

          in say yay yay yay yay yayn ....  
          Let's do the Time Warp Again ...

        •  No He's Not, Yet... (0+ / 0-)
          Pushing the pelvic issues into the background?   Maybe, but he's not CHANGING the church's stance on those issues.
          You may be proven right, who knows, but my take is that in order to move on the sexual issues that have been the subject of many papal pronouncements in the past, Francis has to consolidate power by getting the Faithful back to church and, beyond that, having that same faithful volunteering in the name of Christ to actually help the poor, and to actually fight, through witness, the inequality of current world-wide 'trickle-down' capitalism that Francis outlined in Evangeli Gaudium.

          You meet them halfway with love, peace, and persuasion ~ And expect them to rise for the occasion...

          by paz3 on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:18:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You have absolutely no evidence for these (0+ / 0-)

            statements.  You might as well say that Francis is going to breed a herd of unicorns so we can all ride them over the rainbow.

            This institution is not interested in helping the poor.  It is interested in consolidating its power and wealth and infiltrating governments and health institutions in the US. The poor have always been used by the RCC as a vehicle for proselytizing and many other nefarious goals.  

            This church will NEVER "move" on the sexual issues, and I have full confidence that I will be proven right on that statement.  When any Pope OKs full reproductive choice for women, you can send me an "I told you so message", but I'm certain to be dead before that happens (and most likely you will be too!)

      •  I'll believe that when the catholic church starts (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        including condoms in their aide packages.

        "We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." - Louis Brandies

        by Pescadero Bill on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:39:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  He happens to be Catholic (35+ / 0-)

    in the sense of the Vatican II bunch and those early Christians who lived communal style and preached charity.

    I am disappointed in those who are so jaded by the (admittedly) un-Christian behavior of leaders of many churches (who have put money and power above all, especially their unholy alliance with the right wing) that they can't see a little light here.

    This is the Pope who just fired the bishops in charge of the Vatican bank--all of them--despite some document from Benedict trying to protect them, and fired a German Bishop just for his bling. He offered to look at civil unions and is writing an encyclical on climate change.

    Should he be looking at woman priests? Of course. Should he be investing in companies that make condoms? Probably. But in a 2000 year old institution, we thank God for any progress at all.

  •  This pope has done more good for the image... (28+ / 0-)

    of the Catholic Church than anyone in recent history.  

    The most un-convincable man is the one whose paycheck depends on remaining unconvinced. -- H. L. Mencken

    by kharma on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:15:56 AM PDT

    •  That's a pretty low bar you're setting, (6+ / 0-)

      but yes.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:30:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, I'm agnostic and have despised... (13+ / 0-)

        organized religion since it rarely follows the true teachings of Jesus.  They rake in millions and give very little to the poor, the hungry and the meek.  This Pope has made me recognize that there is a place in the world for them if they end up practicing what they preach.

        The most un-convincable man is the one whose paycheck depends on remaining unconvinced. -- H. L. Mencken

        by kharma on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:53:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agnostic (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Fishtroller01, blueoasis

          I also want to be certain that we understand the difference in terms.

          I think people are of the idea that "agnostic" is somehow a softer version of Atheism. After all, it's not really possible to know, right?

          Well, the way I look at it, is that Atheism covers the issue of whether you believe there is a god.  If you don't accept the God propositions, then you are an Atheist.  

          If you "know" that there is no God, then you are a gnostic atheist.  Obviously, people would take issue with the idea that you can know.  If you don't believe you can know, then you are an agnostic atheist.  

          One term deals with the issue of belief.  The other deals with the issue of knowledge.  

          I don't expect everyone will like such finely described terms, but I've never really liked the weak position of half atheist, anyway.  


          by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:55:05 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I've always taken agnostic as the more humble (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Janet 707, LibrErica, Ahianne

            non-believer.  My grandfather was an agnostic.  He had no faith in God but he RESPECTED the faith of others and never assumed that they were all ignorant and misguided.  But he also had the integrity not to pretend a faith he didn't share.

            What bothers me about many athiests is not their disbelief, it's their arrogance.  

            •  Arrogance (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              commonmass, Sparhawk, blueoasis, sidnora

              Arrogance has nothing to do with being right or wrong.  It has nothing to do with making reasoned arguments.

              I think Christopher Hitchens was arrogant, but he was also right.  

              If someone's faith is not interfering with secular values like equity and justice, then I have no problem.

              If someone is misleading others with faith, I have a problem.  

              If someone is behaving in a way that is harmful to others in the name of their faith, then I have a problem.  

              However, discussing the meaning of these terms is not arrogant, nor should it even bring that issue to the front.  

              Did I say something that caused you to think I was behaving in an arrogant manner?  


              by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:09:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Hitchens was an asshole. (0+ / 0-)

                Fun to read, but an asshole.

                SPES MEA IN DEO EST.

                by commonmass on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:11:54 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  If Hitchens was a Christian (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  you wouldn't say any of that. He'd be your typical "proud" Christian spreading the word to others about his wonderful faith.

                  When he happens to be a member of the most hated minority in America, a forceful and eloquent defense of his beliefs makes him an asshole.

                  “To terrify children with the image of hell, to consider women an inferior creation—is that good for the world?”
                  Christopher Hitchens
                  “MT [Mother Teresa] was not a friend of the poor. She was a friend of poverty. She said that suffering was a gift from God. She spent her life opposing the only known cure for poverty, which is the empowerment of women and the emancipation of them from a livestock version of compulsory reproduction.”
                  Christopher Hitchens

                  What have you done to promote the empowerment of women in the developing world?

                  When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

                  by PhillyJeff on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:54:01 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I don't think he minded (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    I think Hitchens was well aware of the fact that he had chosen a particular way to go about his interactions with the world, and while he may have regretted it in some way, I don't think he would care much if someone called him an asshole.  

                    I wouldn't be surprised if many people who agreed with him called him an asshole from time to time.  

                    If I were a professional debater, I might have sharper, more attacking rhetoric.  That might just be what the debate needs.  


                    by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:17:49 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I have empowered my mother, and my father's (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    otto, Ice Blue


                    My husband was buried out of our Anglican cathedral. My grandmother didn't want to be be buried out of a church. We all respected that.

                    I want to be buried out of a church. I assume that my family will respect that. I also want to have a Masonic funeral as well. As a fifth generation Freemason, and an officer of my lodge and a 32nd degree Scottish Rite Mason, I'm sure I'll get that Masonic funeral.

                    Women, however, have been a big part of my life. Women have been a great empowerment to me. The greatest woman in my life, my great grandmother, was born in 1894 and died in 1986.

                    You can figure the math.

                    SPES MEA IN DEO EST.

                    by commonmass on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:24:14 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  My comment was not addressed to anyone (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                buddabelly, LibrErica

                specifically certainly not to you.

                But arrogance does include the assurance that everything can be put in a right or wrong bucket.  Obviously, many of the religious are arrogant in that respect so arrogance is certainly not confined to athiests.  

                Christopher Hitchens was arrogant, amusing most of the time, which helps.  Right?  I suppose he was right some of the time.  

                Equity and justice can be both religious and secular values -- or not.

                People often behave in a way that is harmful to others because of their lack of faith that there is any higher power than ME.  

                My agnostic grandfather was certainly a personal example to me that people can have and live by a secular ethical code that is kind, fair and just.  But his contemporary, Josef Stalin is certainly a rather major example of how societies organized around the rejection of religion are no more humane.  

                Both good and evil seem to be forces a bit larger than mere science can fully explain.

                I am a Catholic by culture and by family tradition.  This matters to me.  I was taught that the Catholic faith is the one true faith.  I do not believe that.  I don't believe God can be confined in the box of any specific religious sect.  But I also believe that if you lack a faith in God, you are unable to comprehend what others are talking about when they speak of faith.  It's not scientific.  It is not rational.  It can't be confined to that dimension.  We live in an overly technical society.  That tends to constrain how we think.  Of course many religious leaders aim to constrain how we think as well.

                I figure God gave us brains and expects us to use them but I also believe we are not meant to understand it all.  The quest to understand it all defines us as human.  To understand it all is to be God.

                •  You like your grandfather (0+ / 0-)

                  Obviously, you cared about your grandfather, and he set an example for you that you agree with.  Is it possible that part of the reason you appreciate his example is because he didn't challenge your faith?  You seem interested in defending faith, in general, so I would guess you might not have liked it if he did that.  

                  Hold on.  You are starting a debate on whether or not moral actions require a God to take place. Is that a discussion you wanted to have?  

                  I was only interjecting some clarity on the nature of the terms we use to describe those things.  

                  What do you think of this question:

                  Are there any so called moral actions that you can do as a believer that I cannot do as a non believer?  I think the answer is pretty clear.  

                  It's hard for me to imagine how a lack of faith in a dogma would cause someone to do harm to you.  It would seem that as many religious people do harm to others as do atheists.  We can verify that by looking backwards in time to when there were not really any non believers around.  Was there more or less or the same amount of harm done by individuals to one another?  


                  by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:13:47 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Why would he have needed to challenge my faith? (0+ / 0-)

                    You can get into arguments about whether faith alone is enough to be "saved".  That's more of a fundamentalist Protestant thing or how "works", i.e., actions enter into the mix.  I'm not defending any particular religion or particular religious dogma.  But faith is not a set of actions.  Actions are more in the realm of the outcome of free will.  Faith is something else and it's something that many of the most deeply questing religious have struggled to find.   I mean I think libraries have been written on the subject of doubt.  What I'm saying is that faith is not a rational concept so trying to explain it away with logic doesn't do it.  

                    I'm not sure how far you think you have to go back to find an era when there were no believers, certainly before there was written language.  Do you think they were teaching a particular ethical code at the time that lacked the concept of a higher power?  Some purpose larger than the self that would make taking another human life or stealing the possessions of others contrary to that code?  

                    It just seems to me that frequently atheists assume the moral code just magically falls from some place (obviously not heaven) upon the non-believer achieving the same result that something like the 10 Commandments might accomplish if one just happened to follow the same set of principles.  And again, I'm not saying that you can't live an entirely ethical life following a secular ethnical code but humans do tend to  indoctrinate their children into these codes around a unifying theme which more often than not tends to be one religion or another which also tends to include some concept like faith in a higher power or purpose.  

                    But it seems to me that the farther we get away from a belief in a higher power, the closer we get to a narcissistic belief that since it isn't about something larger than me, it must in fact be all about ME.  

                    And unfortunately no matter how many Americans are claiming a religious foundation that belief that ME is the only thing that matters is pretty much how you get to the survival of the fittest ethic that we see so much of today.  Throw everyone but me off the island is pretty much the premise of Reality TV and if that's not a secular mindset, I don't know what is.

                    •  I said, no "non believers" (0+ / 0-)

                      That should clarify that.  

                      There were a few historical non believers, but in general up until a few hundred years ago, atheism wasn't really much of a thing.

                      So, to assume that it's as a result of a lack of faith during those times would be fallacious.  

                      I am going to take serious issue with this comment, because I think it's backwards.  

                      But it seems to me that the farther we get away from a belief in a higher power, the closer we get to a narcissistic belief that since it isn't about something larger than me, it must in fact be all about ME.
                      If I am a bible believing Christian, then I believe that out of this vast expanse of time and space.   I am supposed to believe that this Earth is here for me, and many Christian believers also believe in the personal God who intervenes in their daily lives.  

                      I, however, am made up of the same stuff that makes up everything else.  I am a chunk of the universe.  I am not important to the universe, but I can make something important while I am here.  

                      It's more amazing to me that I am not all that important.  Tyson makes a good point when he says that he visited a museum with a meteorite in the lobby, and he was blown away by the fact that if you were to go and take the iron from the blood of everyone within a large radius, you would have as much iron as in that meteorite.  And... it would be the same iron.

                      My point about your grandfather is that you are enamored with his behavior with respect to your faith, because you liked the way he dealt with it.  

                      I have an ethical duty to explain to my children the root of my own personal moral rules.  So I explain to them how I can arrive at a position of doing good without resorting to a god.  I tell them that I don't believe, and that as a result, some of the time it's harder for me to come up with the best ways to explain to them what I mean by right and wrong.  

                      It's harder, because I have to come up with an answer without relying on a book of rules.  

                      However, I don't have to invent a full moral character out of whole cloth.  I was born into a world with a certain set of rules already in place, it's the tinkering.  

                      It's just the opposite.  I don't claim to know your level of belief, but it's hard for me to imagine that this entire universe was put here for humanity alone.  


                      by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:08:12 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  What all religions and ethical systems share (0+ / 0-)

                        is the principle of compassion.

                        Consistently living up to that principle, by any individual, never mind a group, has been let's say uneven, but gradually improving over time.

                        The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any. -Alice Walker

                        by LibrErica on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:36:37 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  Well you can pick and choose the particular (0+ / 0-)

                        dogmas you don't believe.  Heck, I can do that too because there are plenty of dogmas I don't believe either.  

                        You have your moral code based on values that came from somewhere and since most of us are constrained by our own culture probably a large dose of that good old western civ stuff seeped in without you thinking one way or the other about where it came from so you wind up with a lot of Judeo-Christians,  Greeks and Romans in there someplace.

                        Added to that many are becoming educated in Eastern religions and Islam and so we expand the territory of our ethical and moral models.  Certainly as we think globally and beyond we do bring in a greater awareness that the universe of faith is indeed larger than ourselves and may extend beyond humanity as we know it.  I am a Christian so the relationship of the human to the divine does matter in my faith but I'm not hung up on confining faith to my personal belief system either.  

                        I am not trying to talk you into believing anything and I respect that you do not believe.  But I think the problem atheists face is that given our cultural heritage and the billions of believers that constructed it, it's hard to disprove the faith of all those folks so some go about it by attacking this sect or that over this dogma or that and it can become mean and disrespectful of the faithful in general particularly when joined with the inevitable "I'm an atheist and I believe in these x number of other things" -- which tend to be based on something going around in the culture at the time and as if everyone who is not a believer shares such a high minded secular code of ethics.  I mean you can not believe in God and at the same time not believe in much of anyone or anything else too.  So as an atheist are you stuck with a bunch of psychopaths as co-non believers or are you speaking for a set of values which gets darn close to just another dogma or are you speaking only for yourself?  And speaking for yourself and what you personally believe is fine.  I just have problems with it when it becomes judgmental of all believers.  

                        Again, I've been told I'm going to hell by the fundamentalists who have told me to my face that all Catholics burn in hell and assured me that my agnostic grandfather is in fact in hell, beyond a shadow of a doubt they know he is in hell. Well, I have plenty of problems with them as well.    

                        I do respect that figuring it out for yourself and building your own value system requires effort and thought and may be a lot more meaningful than just falling back on what your parents told you to believe or showing up at some Church on Sunday to be socially acceptable and daydreaming through the service.   Just don't assume that all believers are of that kind.  Many put a lot of thought and effort into living their faith as well.  My grandfather respected those who did.

                        •  I didn't invent the moral code (0+ / 0-)

                          It existed when I was born.  I learned it by being a member of the population.

                          One of the main differences between humans and other animals is that we are able to pass on abstract information.  We can teach each other things that other animals can't.  Other animals are generally left with instinct, and with copying the animal around them.  

                          We, however, can amass abstract information about all sorts of things, and pass that information on.  

                          As a result, we are able to create more and more finely tuned ethical model by which to live our lives.  

                          I am born into that.  I do not have any need to invent it.  


                          by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:50:07 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                •  Ironically Stalin's mother was a lifelong (0+ / 0-)

                  Orthodox Christian who spouted off to everyone who would listen to her that she was disappointed in him for not becoming a priest. He let her be.

                  “You think You're frightening me with Your hell, don't You? You think Your hell is worse than mine.” --Dorothy Parker

                  by Ice Blue on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:25:50 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  I am an atheist (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              and my views are apparently similar to your father's.

              Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

              by AaronInSanDiego on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:30:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  So we should shut up and go back in the closet? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Are you also sick of those "arrogant" LGBT people who have their pride parades and shove their "lifestyles" in your face?

              Are you sick of those "arrogant" (or maybe you'd say uppity) black people who fight for civil rights?

              Atheists are the most hated minority in America. Numerous polls have shown we're thought of as less trustworthy and less likely to be voted into public office than any other group - that includes women, African Americans, LGBT people, Muslims and others.

              We're not going back in the closet any more, I'm sorry. If your faith is so shallow and brittle that us merely stating our nonbelief makes you offended and upset then you have a personal problem.

              He had no faith in God but he RESPECTED the faith of others and never assumed that they were all ignorant and misguided.
              So the most annoying and "arrogant" nonbelievers maybe go on the internet and profess their beliefs which you can easily avoid by not listening to or watching them.

              The most annoying and arrogant believers tell you to your face you're going to burn and suffer in hell for eternity.

              I seem to see a lot of "arrogant" people making fun of Young Earth Creationists, Westboro Baptist Church members, Supply-Side Economics believers etc. Is that arrogant also?

              When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

              by PhillyJeff on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:51:32 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I wouldn't vote for you (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                but that would have everything to do with your attitude and nothing to do with your lack of faith.

                As I've stated already on two comments, I have enormous respect for my own grandfather who was not a believer.  I respect your doubt.

                I just think it is neither wise nor kind to disrespect the faith of others.  It doesn't make you smarter than Thomas More or Martin Luther King or Gandhi.

                •  You must be aware of the bias (0+ / 0-)

                  I made a comment to clarify a term that I think is used incorrectly and you brought up a personal quality you don't like about people who identify with one or both of the terms.  

                  There are other terms to describe atheists.  

                  Thoughtful, reasoned, curious, searching, individualistic, idealistic, honest...

                  You could come up with a list of terms to describe the many people you've spoken with who are atheist.  

                  Maybe you're not taking all of that into consideration.


                  by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:29:22 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  so you (0+ / 0-)

                  respect (?) those who are not believers.

                  At the same time, you imply that they are not smart and that you are smart.

                  Well, this really is not much respect when it comes down to it.  It is just the classic religious-people-are-so-much-better-than-you argument that has been made for centuries.  Do you really think that Jesus likes people who put themselves on a pedestal like that?  What happened to humility?

                  Action speaks louder than words.

                  When will Democrats learn the lesson from the story of The Scorpion and the Frog

                  by GideonAB on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:46:01 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  personally, as a recovering Catholic, I think your (0+ / 0-)

                comment there is a perfect example of why Atheists "are the most hated minority" in the nation....It's almost worse than a militant Vegan or the worst, a militant ex-smoker........

                Most who are as you put it "out" are sheer assholes like ol fishtroller upthread thus they don't tend to engender a whole lotta love from their targets....

                Personally, I don't find myself presumptuous enough to say with any certainty what is real and what is fake and what is truth and what is false.....

                I know that the laws of the universe you and I deal with every day are not the same at the micro level...I know, because very smart peeps, much smarter than I, have done the math that shows something is going on....There's either dark energy/matter of some type or....We as yet can't say what really is.....are we a universe of musical notes, vibrating strings playing the symphony of life, are we a mass of atoms as we know them or ...what does quantum tunneling and teleportation let alone timeless transfer mean in our real world......can we combine the quantum and physical world somehow...Is "God" maybe those strings, or those other 11-36 dimensions.....

                Who the hell really knows...So far the math has not worked but it will eventually

                someone will sit at a park bench and scribble the working theory for mass transportation and creation/destruction and the energy control required....just like Nikola Tesla did with 60 cycle A/C electricity we still live with today....Edison wanted DC.....

                Until then I'll still sit back and shake my head at anyone who presumes to "Know the Truth"........

                Vaya con Dios Don Alejo
                I want to die a slave to principles. Not to men.
                Emiliano Zapata

                by buddabelly on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:20:23 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  It only takes one to confirm it (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  That's a bummer.

                  It is possible to be an atheist and not know.  I simply have no reason to believe in a God.  

                  What would be presumptuous of me would be to insert an idea of a deity, and then claim that I have a reason to believe in that specific deity.  

                  Is there an answer to the question about what you believe that is not a yes or no answer?  

                  Do you believe in God? Maybe.  Dependent upon what?  

                  So, let's take the example of  a jar of jelly beans.

                  I am standing there, picking ear wax with a sonic screwdriver, wrapping tamales with the other hand, and along comes a cat.  It looks at me, reaches its paw up to its mouth and removes its retainer so it can be understood.  

                  "I think the number of jelly beans is odd," says the cat.  "Do you agree?"

                  If I have evidence that the number is odd or even, then I can make a claim.  

                  However, I don't know anything about the answer.  

                  If I disagree, am I meaning to say that the number is even?  No.  I am saying that the best answer is to say that I have no reason to believe that the number is odd.  

                  I cannot make a positive assertion without some reason.


                  by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:43:31 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  your last sentence is what I wish more would (0+ / 0-)


                    Unfortunately, there are a certain number who are the stereotype like the person I mentioned in the last comment..... I'm right with your last sentence, I would just call that agnostic rather than atheist as imo, an atheist "believes" there is no god...there's no room there for new learning just like with a fundagelical......

                    Myself, I don't find a need to believe anything....I'm just fine letting the science progress......

                    Vaya con Dios Don Alejo
                    I want to die a slave to principles. Not to men.
                    Emiliano Zapata

                    by buddabelly on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:00:56 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Well (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      buddabelly, sidnora

                      I tried to explain that Atheist is a question of belief. You do or you don't.  

                      I don't think you can say "maybe" in response to a belief question without it then becoming a knowledge question.  

                      Do you believe? Maybe.  

                      I don't know if that works.  


                      by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:11:46 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  for myself and others I know it's more (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:

                        Do you believe in God?
                        I don't know.....

                        Rather than Maybe though I guess they both boil down very similar if not the same...

                        It's an issue of degree I think...Personally I don't care whether you or anyone else believes in a God or not...I just don't particularly want to hear about it every time we talk or be told by both sides I'm an idiot or that my position can not exist...

                        It does exist for me and it also works fine for me......

                        The Atheist who goes from diary to diary mocking every believer of every stripe is the one I can't stand to be around and the one who gives all a bad name....just like in every group, there's always a few...

                        Not the one who holds their belief and doesn't proselytize or demean....same way I feel about the religious......

                        And Atheism is a belief, the belief of the absence of any God...a position just as unprovable as the Theist who believes in the Trinity.........

                        That's why agnostic just seems to fit better to me

                        imo of course, ymmv

                        Vaya con Dios Don Alejo
                        I want to die a slave to principles. Not to men.
                        Emiliano Zapata

                        by buddabelly on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:45:59 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Why is it ok for believers to go diary to diary (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:

                          mocking atheists when if they made the same comments about Muslims, Catholics, Mormons, LGBT people, African Americans etc they'd be attacked and HR'd to oblivion?

                          The Atheist who goes from diary to diary mocking every believer of every stripe is the one I can't stand to be around and the one who gives all a bad name....just like in every group, there's always a few...
                          So now not wanting to stay in the closet and shut up about our beliefs is mocking believers?

                          Have you ever had a personal atheist friend tell you you're going to be damned to hell for eternity for your beliefs? It's a little more upsetting then reading internet comments slamming your beliefs as arrogant and unacceptable (which was done in the comment I replied to).

                          I don't see similar comments when people mock the Westboro Baptist Church? Who are you to mock their deeply held religious beliefs?

                          Despite your attempts to silence us, atheists exist.

                          When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

                          by PhillyJeff on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:29:28 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                •  So the only way for atheists to be "good" (0+ / 0-)

                  is to shut up, stay in the closet, never be proud or happy with ourselves and to make sure no other atheists feel like they have a community and that they are not alone.

                  I wonder what you think about out and proud LGBT people or minorities who fight for civil rights.

                  I ask again - are LGBT pride parades filled with arrogant, terrible people? Should LGBT people stop fighting for marriage equality since it's icky to you?

                  When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

                  by PhillyJeff on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 09:25:38 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  do all that that is great...Do not demean and (0+ / 0-)

                    ridicule believers as many asshole atheists do.  

                    There is no need to denigrate another to uplift yourself.  And honestly, how well do you respond to being called an idiot?

                    How long do you think someone is going to keep listening once you start with the "sky daddy" or any of a thousand other insults that some atheists feel the need to fling at any believer every chance they get whether that believer has ever said a damn thing to them....It really isn't the best way to be liked to insult a persons religion and call them an idiot for believing at all......

                    I mean come on, do you think the nic "fishtroller" was chosen to uplift themselves or to ridicule others?

                    Vaya con Dios Don Alejo
                    I want to die a slave to principles. Not to men.
                    Emiliano Zapata

                    by buddabelly on Fri May 02, 2014 at 01:43:43 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Why assume... (0+ / 0-)

              ...atheists are any different?

          •  While acknowledging your argument (6+ / 0-)

            its a little backward. Atheism is a skeptical stance that rejects dogma even in scientific studies; anything you believe is a bias against the alternative.

            Atheism simply distrusts belief.

            Religion comforts believers with its "well you can't be sure but here is how you can cover yourself just in case" argument and that applies to agnostics who aren't sure what they believe, but believe they have to believe something (Zelazney's agnostics prayer from "Creatures of Light and Darkness")

            The Agnostic's Prayer
            (Roger Zelazny, Creatures of Light and Darkness, © 1969)

                Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care what I say, I ask, if it matters, that you be forgiven for anything you may have done or failed to do which requires forgiveness. Conversely, if not forgiveness but something else may be required to insure any possible benefit for which you may be eligible after the destruction of your body, I ask that this, whatever it may be, be granted or withheld, as the case may be, in such a manner as to insure your receiving said benefit. I ask this in my capacity as your elected intermediary between yourself and that which may not be yourself, but which may have an interest in the matter of your receiving as much as it is possible for you to receive of this thing, and which may in some way be influenced by this ceremony. Amen.

            Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

            by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 07:32:32 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Fab! Thanks. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
              Teh Twitterz, I'z awn dem.
              Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

              by OleHippieChick on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:04:06 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Atheism is null (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Atheism does nothing.  It is a mute response.  It simply rejects a claim of theism as being unproven.  In fact, every theist does the same thing many times over.  

              Gnostic is from the word "to know."

              You can have the same situation with theists.  You will find plenty of theists who say they can know that a god exists.  They are gnostic theists.  and so on.  

              This is not my argument.  You will find plenty of support for it around the internet.  

              I don't see the idea of a "lack of knowledge of a god" as somehow being a "maybe" position.  

              At this moment, do you believe in a God? Can you answer that with a yes or no?  Does " maybe"  fit as an answer to this?  Do you sometimes believe, and other times not believe?  That's probably a possibility.

              How about in terms of action?  Do you behave as if it is possible that a god might exist?  I suppose the question to ask there would be, " Which God?"  

              Honestly, I can't imagine what the would mean to change my behavior to act as if a god might exist, even if I'm not sure.  It sounds very "Pascal"  to me.  

              At this point, there is no reason for me to believe in a God.  Even if I think that at some point in the future, I may have information that proves otherwise, that doesn't make me believe.  

              I don't believe there is a god, but I don't know.  

              The agnostic prayer is a good reason to not take such decisions lightly.  Why waffle about in a sea of doubt?  

              Is there a particular claim of God that you are uncertain about?  


              by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:04:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Look at the history of the deities we have created (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                Mostly the are what I'd call Platonic Ideals. They are presented as a pantheon of paired opposites

                The god of the Bible favored by People of the Book, Christians, Muslims and Jews, is the Written Law personified in the form of the Ten Commandments, but fleshed out with some 666 individual commandments, precepts, rules, norms, mores, conventions.

                The Sons of Israel Create their new god in the Egyptian manner carving an image of the god (The Ten Commandments) in stone, housing the image in an ark and placing the ark in a sanctuary. With that god go lesser deities which are also placed in the same ark.

                This god isn't Monotheistic, just intended to be sovereign over all the other norms, mores, conventions, attitudes and beliefs commonly referred to a gods.

                The Bible is a collection of wisdom literature and precedent that we can take as an attempt to build a consensus to be law abiding.

                In the story of Abraham four gods are presented, earth, air, water and fire (A Greek gloss to include natural philosophy) with whom covenants are made and two sets of existing common laws Shariah and Hotep are contrasted. In Exodus the names of perhaps another half dozen gods are mentioned and their places of worship visited.

                Now you can if you wish contrast the Biblical pantheon presented in Genesis with the pantheon of the Sumerians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Norse; or you can go farther afield, but all the Pagan Gods are basically paired opposites.

                We create religion in our own image reflecting who we are, but its strongly influenced by the attitudes and values of our ancestors.

                Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:19:02 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  613 is the number of the "Mitzvot" -- the Statutes (0+ / 0-)

                  found in Exodus Leviticus and Deuteronomy -- also having a colloquial meaning of  "Good Deeds".

                  666 is the Number of the Beast -- probably "Nero" but now understood to mean "The AntiChrist".  

                  •  And 668 is (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    AdamSelene, otto
                    the Neighbor of the Beast
                    As is 664... :p

                    The bumpersticker I want: THE LEFT IS RIGHT! THE RIGHT IS WRONG! THE FAR RIGHT IS FAR WRONG!

                    by Uncle Cosmo on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:18:21 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Its more complicated than that (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    The number of the beast originates as astronomical numerology associated with the zodiac and an orderly placement of the planets withing the various astrological constellations .

                    1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 + 10 + 11 + 12 + 13 + 14 + 15 + 16 + 17 + 18 + 19 + 20 + 21 + 22 + 23 + 24 + 25 + 26 + 27 + 28 + 29 + 30 + 31 + 32 + 33 + 34 + 35 + 36 = 666

                    In the Pentateuch there is some controversy about what should be included just as there is some controversy about the number of the beast.

                    The Bible is read by Christians, Muslims, and Jews and probably by quite a few people following other religions; Atheists, Agnostics, Gnostics and Pagans as well as Heretics like Opus dei.

                    If you like we can start with the 613 precepts and commandments recognized by the Torah, and add the 7 Rabinnic commandments to get to 620.

                    In its primary meaning, the Hebrew word mitzvah ("commandment", מִצְוָה, [mit͡sˈva], Biblical: miṣwah; plural מִצְווֹת mitzvot [mit͡sˈvot], Biblical: miṣwoth; from צִוָּה ṣiwwah "command") refers to precepts and commandments as commanded by God. It is a word used in Judaism to refer to the 613 commandments given in the Torah (at Mount Horab, where all the Jews accepted the Torah, saying "We will do, and we will listen") and the seven rabbinic commandments instituted later for a total of 620. According to the teachings of Judaism, all moral laws are, or are derived from, divine commandments.
                    We can go further in the sense of Pope and anti Pope and who are we talking about as evil and a beast and from what perspective are we looking as to who gets to speak for the church.

                    We could add to the 620 listed so far the other non Jewish references to laws, norms, mores, conventions, and covenants precedent  to the Torah such as the pantheon of 42 Egyptian gods and consorts and goddeses in the pantheon of the country where the Sons of Israel lived and were culturally assimilated for half a millenia before the Exodus getting us to 662.

                    Now take the 4 powers and authorities making the covenants between Abraham and his deities, el Shaddai, Yahwah, and Moloch, Hagars deity and covenant with el Roi, that gets us to 666.

                    Abraham and Sarai's Sharia,  Pharoah's commandments, Hagars Hotep were all common law precedent to the Jewish the "Mitzvot"

                    If you really want to get into modern day Papal controversies involving charges of Vatican Heresy and the number of the Beast in modern times consider Opus Dei Controversies

                    Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                    by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:28:20 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  atheism is about belief in God (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Sparhawk, blueoasis, otto

              not about science or general skepticism or anything else.

              Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

              by AaronInSanDiego on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:32:05 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Atheism is as defined by the atheist (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                but I would generalize it as more than skeptical about beliefs in general whether applied to one god or many, or even to any belief expected to be taken on faith.

                Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                by rktect on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:21:31 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Personally (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  I extend it to superstitions, among other things.  

                  Other animals have superstitions, too.  


                  by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:55:41 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Both points are interesting (0+ / 0-)

                    I don't think of a superstition as a belief as we don't really believe in them, just accept them as part of a pattern we find comforting.

                    In that sense superstitions seem more obsessive compulsive to me The childish "step on a crack you break your mothers back"for example, but I still find myself more comfortable placing my feet in between cracks.  

                    That animals have them too is also interesting. Many dogs seem to have to circle the place where they are going to lie down several times and I have observed this behavior in my cat as well.

                    Is that the sort of superstition you refer to or are you talking about the sort of thing people do for luck such as toss a pinch over their shoulder if they spill it, knock on wood (or their heads) for luck, or going to football games semi naked and brightly painted in cold weather?

                    I would differentiate that from religious superstition such as a belief in ghosts, that might be something some people believe in, or dowzing, or even the sort of arcane rituals used in magic for spells or the summoning of spirits; eating a wafer and a sip of wine as the body of Christ seems to me more a ritual than a superstition, clearly people do a lot of strange things for no good reason other than that doing these things as as ritual seems to be comforting to them.

                    Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                    by rktect on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 05:15:00 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

          •  Agnostic/Atheist (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            There was a time when people took logical "proofs" of the existence or non-existence of God seriously. Theists accepted "proofs" of the existence of God (e.g. the Ontological Argument). Atheists  accepted logical "proofs" of the non-existence of God (e.g. the Problem of Evil). Agnostics were those who did not think the existence of God was amenable to "proof". Some were "skeptics" in an old-fashioned, pre-scientific sense that held the question of God's existence was not accessible to human intellect.

            Since the scientific revolution, we have developed a different epistemology -- empiricism. We no longer think that questions about reality can be decided by a priori reasoning alone: we think that observational evidence plays an essential role. There has not really been a clear redefinition of what the terms "agnostic" and "atheist" mean in scientific empiricism. We have Laplacian atheism: "I have no need of that hypothesis". And we have the agnosticism popularized by Carl Sagan: the idea that we have no evidence for the view that the universe is an artifact, but might conceivably discover such evidence some day, in which case we would have to revise our view of reality.

            In western thought, religion is concerned with a deity who "creates" the world, and is all-powerful. In non-western thought, this is not always the case. The creation of the universe is not necessarily the centerpiece of the religion, even if it is imagined to have occurred. Thus in Hindu mythology, the universe is made from the cosmic Ocean of Milk (the Milky Way) by churning it, like churning cream to make butter -- the devas and asuras churn the Ocean of Milk to make an elixir of immortality for themselves. The material world is a detritus of that process, not the centerpiece.

            In other non-western religions, the world is an organic being, who is born, or who is the mother or grandmother of all the gods. The gods had nothing to do with making her -- rather, they were made by her.

            I tend toward Saganism -- there no evidence that the universe was "made" by anybody. But the universe itself, and its creative processes, seem quite numinous to me. That doesn't fit neatly into either of the western concepts of "agnosticism" or "atheism."

            American Presidents: 43 men, 0 women. Ready for Hillary

            by atana on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:18:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Your last paragraph (0+ / 0-)

              Isn't the question of if you believe in a God one that is rooted in the present?  

              Wouldn't that have made Sagan a current atheist, but a possible future "believer in a greater power if one pops up" (I don't really want to say theist)


              by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:15:41 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Pehaps, but "the numinous" doesn't depend (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                on that iffy omnipotent "God" power. I'm pretty impressed by what the known (and less known) stuff of cosmology has able to "create".

                God was supposed to explain where all that amazing stuff came from -- it supposedly came from an even more amazing God. But the God hypothesis doesn't "explain" anything.

                However, the amazing stuff continues to be amazing even if no God made it.

                American Presidents: 43 men, 0 women. Ready for Hillary

                by atana on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:49:59 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  This one gets me (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  I used to teach in a planetarium, and I loved to tell this one in particular.  

                  Neil deGrasse Tyson said: "… I want someone to put electrodes on my head. And when I reflect on our kinship with the cosmos. When I do the calculations that show that a 15 ton meteorite that we have at the Rose Center for Earth and space. It’s an iron meteorite. When I do the calculations that shows if you take all the iron from the hemoglobin of the people in the tristate area of NY City. You can recover that much iron out of their blood and realize that the iron from that meteorite and the iron from your blood have common origin in the core of a star.

                  Tell me what part of my brain is lighting up? Because that excites me. That makes me want to grab people in the street and say “have you heard this”? That it is not simply as Carl Sagan says: “We are starstuff”. But there’s a more poetic and I think more accurate way to say it. It’s quite literally true that “we are stardust”. In the highest exalted way one can use that phrase.


                  by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:38:49 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  That is exactly the way (0+ / 0-)

            I would use those terms.

            I called myself an agnostic for many years, because I believe it is impossible to know one way or the other. But at some point I had to deal with the "what I believe" part, and I realized I am an atheist. Doesn't matter, though, since we can never really know.

            "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

            by sidnora on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:06:54 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  When I go to Mass on Sunday (5+ / 0-)

          I'm usually presented with a half dozen opportunities to give or work for the poor most of them secular, Habitat for Humanity, whatever.  

          If I slept in on Sunday, these opportunities would not have been put in my way. Of course, I could seek them out as many do but it's hasn't been my observation that those who avoid Church do so because they are too busy doing good elsewhere.  

          One of the reasons for organized religion is that people are social beings.  We tend to reinforce each other for better or worse.  Of course, the 1% has their charity gala circuit, but for the rest of us, we tend to get that social reinforcement in other settings and with the demise of Elks Clubs and Womens Clubs and other such community do-gooding organizations, many are put in the way of charity on Sunday.

          •  Really? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Road to1 Escondido

            "If I slept in on Sunday, these opportunities would not have been put in my way."

            Are you saying that if you didn't go to church you would not be aware of or pursue charitable giving?  Do you know that over 60% of the money for catholic charities comes from taxpayer monies?

            Those who "avoid church" ARE often busy doing good work elsewhere.  Just check out the Foundation Beyond Belief or simply realize that when communities come together during times of need at least 20% of those involved are non-believers.  

            Atheists and other non-believers or non-church goers do good for the sake of good, not for the sake of proselytizing or promoting a church.

            •  Having worked for county government I am (0+ / 0-)

              quite aware that the majority of funding for Catholic Charities is provided by government in return for its delivery of services.  Of course, this also includes funding for Lutheran Social Services and other faith based organizations which deliver services to the needy. I would also agree that far too many of the religious are not aware of this fact.

              So then 80% of those who come together in times of need are believers?  

              No doubt many atheists do good and many do not.  Calling yourself an atheist doesn't improve your morals.  That so many seem to believe it does makes me wonder if some of you aren't unintentionally founding your own religion.  

            •  Works Both Ways, You Know (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Atheists and other non-believers or non-church goers do good for the sake of good, not for the sake of proselytizing or promoting a church.
              Yes, and many, if not most, of the church-going people I know of who do good do so for the love of Christ and his teachings that are essentially exemplary actions of doing good for others, and not for proselytizing or promoting their churches.

              Your experience obviously is different.

              You meet them halfway with love, peace, and persuasion ~ And expect them to rise for the occasion...

              by paz3 on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:32:26 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  "Christ" is a mythological character. (0+ / 0-)

                However, those who wrote these stories made sure that this character espoused the punishment of hell for those who did not particularly care for his messages.

                I do not find a character who endorses a god of punishment and hellfire to be an example of morality, not matter how many times he said nice things.  He also made it clear that he came "only for the house of Israel". So he was not exactly an ecumenical personality either.

                These stories were written for a particular audience and later on edited by the Roman Catholic church to suit their particular purposes.

                I can promise you that every church going person who does good deeds to help others would have done them even if the Christian faith never existed.

        •  Why "The Teaching of Jesus" ?? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ice Blue

          First of all ... apart from the Great Teaching:   "I am the Resurrection and the Life" T  -- most of what Christians call "the true teachings of Jesus" are for the most part  witty and engaging re-statments of the of  Hillel the Great's, greatest hits.

          And that suggests the question:  why would "the true teachings of Jesus"be of any significance UNLESS one had already accepted the Gospel as being ... well ... Gospel. ?

  •  greetings from germany (31+ / 0-)

    i saw a interview with a german journalist at the Vatican
    this pope is a u turn for the vatican
    he eats in the mensa
    drives his old rusty renault
    but what made me spit out my coffee
    was that the pope said " you know god is not catholic"
    in all my live i never thought to hear so much wisdom from the vatican

    •  Hi Gerald! Long time no see. God is not catholic (16+ / 0-)

      Is So True. I would even dare say God is not Religion!!
      I see religion, like politics, very restrictive and in my mind, God knows no bounds:)

      "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

      "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

      by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:26:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  With these sorts of statements, people could (0+ / 0-)

        come to the conclusion that God is a Marxist.

        And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

        by MrJersey on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:34:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  "God isn't all that interested in religion." (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        roseeriter, Ahianne

        That's a phrase that has struck with me for years.

        I've been fascinated by near-death experiences for decades and have known and/or talked to probably dozens of people who have had them.  (It is one reason I couldn't end up being the atheist I was heading for;  simply because those experiences have nothing whatsoever to do with religion or faith or dogma or theology -- all of which I don't trust -- and everything to do with experiences many, many people have had.)

        One thing I find heartening about them is that there is a consistent picture of "God" (... or "the big light" ... or "the big soul" ... or "Everything" ... or whatever ... it seems to be pretty incomprehensible and beyond description) that is very different from what average religion teaches -- (at least average Western religion) -- and from what people expect.  

        Actually, the big "It" that they meet and "talk to" seems like someone any secular humanist on these threads would welcome.  It cares more about actions, choices, and behaviours -- in other words, personal responsibility -- than about beliefs and religion.  One person said, "I was surprised to find out that God isn't all that interested in religion."  (Studies show that people who have such experiences tend to become more disapproving of organised religion.)  

        As one person phrased it to me, "God wants us to live as if there wasn't a God."  (The point being, again, stressing personal responsibility, and doing what's right because it's right and good for the universe -- not for any expected "reward".)  

        As many studies have shown, the biggest values of people who have such experiences tend to become Love and Knowledge -- but it almost becomes hard for the two to be considered as separate things.  

        "Love" is not meant in a mushy, touch-feely sense, but is more based in the fact that everything is connected, and if one part is harmed, it harms all.  And if one part is made healthy, it benefits all.  "Knowledge" is related to that -- to love something is to want to become one with it and know it.  Thus people who have had near-death experiences tend to become avid readers of science, psychology, history, philosophy ...

        Anyway ... a ramble, but just some thoughts that occurred to me.  I think that big "Being of Light" would be very happy with this Pope so far.

        •  Fear created Religion. If one really understands (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          what Love Is there is no fear, thus no hell, no hate, no judgemental God etc., etc.

          Glad to meet you niemann:)

          "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

          "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

          by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:57:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  well, yesterday Rush limbaugh said (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tunk, Ahianne

      that the Pope isn't Catholic ..or words to that effect

      He really ripped Francis apart ..calling him a Marxist and stating that the Pope doesn't know Catholic teaching ....

      whatever your beliefs or lack of, one does have to admit it that it takes a hell of alot of nerve to state that the man responsible for defining Catholic doctrine doesn't understand know it ...

      and that people will agree with Rush .. oh, the stupidity

      Give your heart a real workout! Love your enemies!

      by moonbatlulu on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:36:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rush is right. Neither the Pope (0+ / 0-)

        Nor the cardinals who elected him know shit about Catholicism.  For the true teachings of Christ one must consult the one infallible source Monsignor Limbaugh.

        There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

        by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:16:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Encouraging Imagery; However the Track Record (9+ / 0-)

    is that while the institution periodically whines about inequality and war, it only fights for sex control and bureaucracy.

    I hope we see a lot of practical engagement of these ideas with the real world.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:25:30 AM PDT

  •  Unfortunately... (5+ / 0-)

    not all Catholics have embraced him. My father is an ultra-Catholic who pines for the pre-Vatican II days. He still posts pictures of the previous Pope on face book from the Catholic Militant website.

    I have yet to see one of Francis from him.

  •  Allow me to be cynical (14+ / 0-)

    and bet that we're going to be seeing a return to old-fashioned "anti-Papist' rhetoric coming from the RW haters.

    It'll pain them to have to do so, since they've considered the RC Church their ally in the good fight against Communism, women's rights and critical thinking for a generation or more, and they need all the friends they can get. But pronouncements like this one are unacceptable!

    Oh, and Rick Santorum's head will be exploding in 5...4...3...2...

    "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

    by sidnora on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:35:41 AM PDT

    •  those are the hard-edged haters I referred to, (5+ / 0-)

      The Pope may get a few to 'change' their bad due time....maybe..

      "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

      "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

      by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:40:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I look forward to the video (8+ / 0-)

      of Santorum's head exploding when he finally realizes that he has no clue at all when it come to the teaching of the man he claims to worship!

      Dogs and Philosophers do the greatest good and get the fewest rewards (Diogenes)

      by Out There on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:58:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And that is just fine by me (6+ / 0-)

      Perhaps we will get the bulk or Catholics back in the party they should be in. Any person of faith who believes in the primacy of social justice does not belong in the GOP. Abortion, marriage etc are wedge issues that have been used to blind Catholics (and Babtists) to the realities of the GOP's false god (money).

      Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them - Thomas Jefferson 30 July, 1816

      by Roiling Snake Ball on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:00:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It was inevitable. (0+ / 0-)

      Christians are the most fractious, divisive, self righteous group of sons of bitches on the planet.  Prostestants are protesting Catholicism.  And there are hundreds of made up protestant sects.  Clearly they don't really agree on much.  This coalition of Christian politics was doomed from the start.  I guarantee you the Baptists are going to be talking major shit about Catholics. And that is a good thing.  I am now supporting and promoting the idea that if America is to be a Christian nation then we must be Catholic because they were the first and the biggest.  Fuck the protestants.  TV preachers vs. the Pope in a celebrity death match.

      You want a Christian nation then let's have a Christian nation in which everyone must be baptized into the true, aposostolic, univeral Roman Catholic Church or face banishment or execution.

      Lord hear my prayer.

      There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

      by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:22:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Stop and THINK! (9+ / 0-)

    If "inequality is the root of social evil" then the Pope is the head of one of the most socially evil institutions on the earth.  How are WOMEN treated in the RCC?? Are they allowed equal access to the priesthood? Are they allowed equal access to the family planning health options that non-catholics are allowed to enjoy?  

    As far as guaranteed "dignity" of work... how can a woman who can't control her own fertility take part in that? Or is the only work she is qualified to do is having babies?

    Let's also try to look at the facts about the RCC before getting all excited about the economic/capitalism statements too.  The RCC is one of the biggest investors in capitalistic systems in the world and one of the largest real estate owners. The Vatican is stuffed with art and treasures (much of it procured through devious acts) to the point that its value is impossible to estimate for insurance purposes. So all the "idolatry of money" talk is just that.... talk! (Or hypocrisy in the extreme!).

    Really. I find this jumping on the Francis bandwagon every time he opens his mouth (whether one is religious or unreligious) without the application of thought and reason to be really scary!    

    •  Yeah, but (14+ / 0-)

      this new pope is without a doubt a great improvement over the past. The Vatican is a very powerful force, and it could be turned to a better direction going forward maybe.

      A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

      by onionjim on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:52:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But he's not a great improvement (4+ / 0-)

        over past popes.  He is better at schmoozing the public and has a nice PR team advising him. He has already backpedaled on the abuse issues and allowed his rep to the UN to blast the well deserved scolding in the UN reports. He has done nothing to change any policies of significance in the catholic tenets/rules/regulations, etc.  His changes at the bank only involve putting his own people in.  

        I would highly recommend either reading Betty Clermont's diaries on Kos or doing some more research on Francis AND his past in Argentina.

    •  Maybe he is trying to change things- (9+ / 0-)

      “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”

      by George Bernard Shaw

      Change is hard, and someone has to get that ball rolling.

      "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

      "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

      by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:55:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The only ball rolling is the PR media (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        hype ball.

        •  Even if it is PR isn't it better to openly (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Condemn trickle down as immoral?  I love this pope.

          There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

          by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:25:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What's immoral is accepting (0+ / 0-)

            the advice on "trickle down" from a man who represents one of the most corrupt institutions in the world's history. The only thing the Vatican knows about "trickle down" is that it works really well in US hospitals when it trickles down it's Religious and Ethical Directives onto the heads of women who can't get decent reproductive health care from them.

            Wake up....please!!!

            •  No, you wake up. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              The institution is two thousand years old.  It is what it is.  Francis is a good man.  He is in charge of a fucked up institution, but If he uses his immense influence to  address the evil of greed in a meaningful way then I can overlook some things.  I happen to think that he is addressing the root of all evil, and the issue of our age, the concentration of wealth.  And if you don't like it call God, his phone number is Et cum spiri 2 2 0.

              Dominos vobiscum dude.

              There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

              by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 05:34:16 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If you read what Bertolgio did in Argentina, (0+ / 0-)

                you would retract the "good man" comment. He called gay marriage "evil" and the work of satan.  Or does everyone conveniently forget this stuff?

                I called "God's number" for years.  There is no one on the other end of the line.  

            •  Thank you for enlightening us with your wisdom. (0+ / 0-)

              Now we know that how we view things, what we think and feel, is wrong ... and that we should be thinking and feeling and viewing things the same way you do.  

              Then, like the Buddha, we too shall be "awake".

              •  I'm arguing a point, and finding (0+ / 0-)

                it quite frustrating that people are ignoring the real damage this institution is doing in the world.  If I was talking environmental damage everyone would be nodding their heads with me.  Instead people are apologizing for the monstrosity and downplaying its effects on women, children etc. etc.

                And I think the apologetics is solely because of the "respect" given to religion that it does not deserve!

    •  You definitely have a point, (5+ / 0-)

      especially as regards the treatment of women. I grew up Catholic, and the submissive and subservient role of women in the church was so ingrained, so taken for granted, that most of it didn't even notice it for years.

      And that hasn't really changed. I'm glad to see Francis making a case for equality and fairness, but it kinda reminds me of FDR with the New Deal- it was great for white people. Not many people noticed at the time that it did little or nothing for people of color. We should be sure to notice that Francis has so far offered little or nothing to women.

  •  Piketty Pope! n/t (6+ / 0-)

    So I see only tatters of clearness through a pervading obscurity - Annie Dillard

    by illinifan17 on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:01:44 AM PDT

  •  He just fast-tracked two popes to (7+ / 0-)

    sainthood too though. John 23 was a reformer ended Latin as the official language of the church, but John Paul 2?

    I'm just not sure why two guys who were as highly visible as popes are need sainthood.

    "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

    by Lily O Lady on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:09:44 AM PDT

    •  I doubt god sees any 'saints'- pretty sure We are (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lily O Lady, elwior

      All Equal in His eyes:)

      I've seen 'miracles' in my personal lifetime that effect regular folks, done by regular folks.  Saints is just a catholic thingy..

      "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

      "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

      by roseeriter on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:18:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm (7+ / 0-)

        Episcopalian, so I know more than some about sainthood. St. Alban has been called the first Anglican Christian martyr. St. Albans school is located next to the National Cathedral (Episcopal) in DC.

        There has been little real analysis as to why this very popular pope has chosen to elevate two recent popes to sainthood. Even as a non-Roman, I have positive memories of John 23 as a reformer. Still, John Paul 2 wasn't all that earth shaking.

        The pope used to be the highest authority in the world until the Protestant Reformation. Kings and emperors feared excommunication if they stepped out of line until Henry 8 broke with the Church of Rome and established the Church of England.

        I just think there's more going on with these two new sainthoods than meets the eye.

        There's more I could say and should say, but I've got to get to an appointment. Sorry to post and run, but I'll be back mid-afternoon.

        "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

        by Lily O Lady on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:57:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  John Paul II was in line for sainthood pretty (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      roseeriter, TomP, elwior, Cassandra Waites

      much since the fall of the Soviet Union. No biggie.

    •  jpii (4+ / 0-)

      tried to roll back much of the good done by john xiii, and presided over a global child abuse scandal and cover-up. francis himself has been sharply criticized by the u.n. for his lack of cooperation in investigating that scandal. quite the charm offensive, though.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 07:26:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The process of sainthood for JPII (5+ / 0-)

      began literally just weeks after his death because of public pressure. John XXIII on the other hand is less known outside of Italy. He had a short papacy (5 years) and was known here as "il Papa buono", the good pope. I'm sure that Francis feels closer to John XIII's legacy than JPII, and so he decided to do a kind of "fair and balanced" canonization, recognizing the liberal and conservative wings of Catholicism.

  •  That's a heck of a pope right there. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, TomP, elwior, Portlaw

    We could have been having popes like this all along?!?

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:18:04 AM PDT

  •  It's all about inequality (7+ / 0-)

    I simply can't imagine how anyone could look at a situation as unequal as the US and not recognize that it poisons every single aspect of life.  

    It sets the poor against one another, for instance.  

    It hampers justice for those at the top.

    It creates economic, and educational deficits that simply cannot be made up without serious attention.


    by otto on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 06:50:45 AM PDT

  •  I love the Pope. He's following the (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elwior, roseeriter, Portlaw, ratprique, niemann

    teachings of Jesus, not the teachings of the Church of Petroleum (Atwood).

    48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam> "It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." Edna St.V. Millay

    by slouching on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:21:45 AM PDT

    •  Which teachings of Jesus? (0+ / 0-)
      •  As ye do unto the least of these..... (0+ / 0-)

        There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

        by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 01:29:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  ... you do unto me. (0+ / 0-)

          And the logical follow up on that is that you shouldn't do bad things to people because then you are hurting Jesus. That makes no sense, and come to think of it, is a pretty self centered thing for this character to say.

          Or maybe it's a threat!

          •  hey I am not a religious apologist (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            You asked a question.  That is the answer.  I think Jesus had some pretty great ideas.  Sadly the last person to practice those ideas died on a cross a couple millenia past.

            I think this pope has some pretty good ideas too. I happen to agree that trickle down is a fraud and it is evil.  That don't make me Catholic, but if he keeps this shit up I might migrate back.

            I love John XXIII.  another very cool dude.  

            There is an endless supply of white men, there has always been a limited number of Human Beings

            by ratprique on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 02:56:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I will assume that you (0+ / 0-)

              were referring to Jesus on the cross, since he is not the only god to die in that manner, nor the only god to offer salvation.  His ideas were a mix.  He said some nice stuff and then didn't act on it very well. Plus, he endorsed hell as a fitting punishment for certain peoples that disagreed with his cosmic explanations.  Not moral in my book.

              As far as the Popes go, anyone who heads the RCC is complicit in corruption and there are thousands of people in this world every day who are more moral than those men.  To make "saints" of people who withheld civil and reproductive rights from millions of women and who oversaw and ignored/covered up the abuse of millions of women makes a mockery of the idea.

              Besides, the whole system of sainthood and miracles is simply magical thinking and supernatural nonsense.

    •  He's been in agreement of many of the teachings (0+ / 0-)

      of the World Teacher Maitreya.  

      Though on the root of all evil, there is a difference in what is the root but not the scope of the overall problem of disparity of wealth.

      "No understanding of the spiritual crisis in the world is possible without clear consideration of causes. According to Maitreya, complacency is the root of all evil in the world. What can be summed up as the ‘I’m all right Jack’ mentality leads both individuals and institutions to become estranged from the realities of life, and therefore to ineffective solutions. Complacency is a form of corruption which is not ‘outside’ but inside. The mind itself is potentially constructive or destructive." - World Teacher Maitreya through an associate 1988

  •  I'm not Catholic... (6+ / 0-)

    ...but this Pope pleases me so much more than the two before him!

    Failure to Publicize Acts of Hatred Only Allows Them to Fester and Metastasize.

    by BoxerDave on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:47:15 AM PDT

  •  Does this mean that Francis I is planning to sell (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the assets he controls, which were acquired by his predecessors? Will His Holiness actually follow the word-made-flesh by divesting the money earned from his organization's obscene bargain with Mammon? If not, may I suggest that reality-based kossaks start applying MB's sig to his statements?

    Enough fossil fuel remains on Earth to warm it 6 degrees C by 2100 AD if it is all used. A +6 C planet will only sustain half a billion humans. Human population will rise to 9 billion by 2050. Any questions?

    by davidincleveland on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:54:39 AM PDT

  •  Republished to Anglican Kossacks. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cassandra Waites, roseeriter, niemann

    The Holy Father, though as an Anglican he is not my spiritual guide, has a good head on him.


    by commonmass on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 08:57:08 AM PDT

  •  I would also say that I have an icon of (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, bink, paz3

    Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin in my home office, which I consider to be the home of the Catholic Worker Movement. Also an icon of Father Field, an SSJE Anglo-catholic who made something out of The Church of St. John the Evangelist in Beacon Hill, Boston.

    I revere these people, along with the Martyrs the Episcopal Church revers like Jonathan Myrick Daniels.


    by commonmass on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:03:09 AM PDT

  •  I'm starting to like this Pope (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, Portlaw

    We don't do well compared to other countries but neither does Argentina.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 09:21:09 AM PDT

  •  And People Say (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, pat bunny, Ice Blue, niemann

    That Occupy Wall Street failed.

    (Yes, I know that they are not solely responsible for this idea gaining traction, but OWS and its brother/sister movements elsewhere abroad certainly did a lot to help.)

    "I'll believe that corporations are people when I see Rick Perry execute one."

    by bink on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 10:10:10 AM PDT

  •  I hate to say this but does anyone else.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, niemann

    LOVE to watch right-wingers squirm around this guy? It brings joy to my heart to see a religious leader who declares the evils of things like greed, inequality and bigotry. Especially after living here in the states and listening to our sold-out protestant leaders, who talk about greed like it's a virtue while loudly condemning any sex act unless it's missionary position with your spouse for reproductive purposes and they both hated every second of it.

  •  I'm Constantly Delighted by this Pope! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, leema, niemann

    I couldn't be more of an atheist if I tried, but I still find the new pope to be a good man who is using the bully pulpit of the Vatican to great effect.

    "The Trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat." attributed to Lily Tomlin

    by uniqity on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:44:48 AM PDT

  •  I only hope that certain archbishops, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, niemann

    cardinals and bishops in the US&A hear and obey. Too many of them are still of the greed is godly persuasion.

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 11:55:26 AM PDT

    •  I hope certain self-proclaimed Catholic ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ... politicians, like ... oh, say ... PAUL RYAN ... will reflect on how their own behaviour and values are in complete, total, 180-degree opposition to what the head of their own Church professes.

  •  Most religious people don't realize that most (5+ / 0-)

    atheists don't have a problem with the genuine religious folks who hole true to the real tenants of their faith. Most faith has a very 'good' core, the problem is that core is often manipulated to not good ends. Its the fake or distorted religious people that are generally disliked.

    The Pope gives all the impressions of being the real deal, a man who puts the 'Teachings of Christ' over the religion or church. Some of that may be good PR, but my gut says most of it is real and not some facade.

    Right now he is the only really powerful man in the world willing to really speak the truth and I believe that is because his faith is true.

    Join the DeRevolution: We are not trying to take the country, we are trying to take the country back. Get the money out of politics with public financed campaigns so 'Of the People, By the People and For the People' rings true again.

    by fToRrEeEsSt on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:02:50 PM PDT

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