Monday, July 14, 2014

A few quick things

Currently reviewing a manuscript, and it is so full of hyperbole that I can only stand it in homoeopathic doses, like two paragraphs per day.

If I read "paradigm shift" another time I am going to scream.


Whoever compiled this slide show of photographs from the World Cup Final must be really fond of (1) Bastian Schweinsteiger's girlfriend, (2) Lukas Podolski's son, and (3) sad Argentinean fans. Not sure what that says about their state of mind.


Jason Rosenhouse demolishes the weird idea that until about 150 years ago all Christians saw the bible as merely symbolic and allegoric. Part 1, part 2.

The general problem with holy books is this: They all contain wrong, stupid and hateful things, be it that the world is flat, that the world is a few thousand years old, that insects have four legs, that women should have less rights than men, that adulterers should be stoned, that heretics should be killed, or that holy war is the duty of every believer.

There is no doubt that, believers mostly being decent people, you can have four generations or so of everybody saying, "this is our holy book, it was inspired by the benevolent creator of the universe, you must accept it as a moral compass but please ignore this stuff about a recent creation, about stoning and holy wars".

But, believers being human beings, it is unavoidable that at some point, perhaps in the fifth generation, there will be somebody who reads the book and says, "wait a second, you told me this is our holy book, it was inspired by the benevolent creator of the universe, and I must accept it as a moral compass. But here it says that the world was recently created in pretty much the state it is now." And if you are a bit less lucky, they will say, "but here it says that I should kill the unbelievers, the homosexuals and the adulterers. To prove that I am a more pious person than you, and to gain favour in the eyes of the LORD, I will now do some killing."

As long as texts containing stupid and nasty parts are seen as sacred, peaceful and tolerant religion is not necessarily a stable state of affairs.


This is awesome.

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