Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Sacramentals

I am going to begin a study of some of the most absurd teachings of the Catholic church.   Before I start, I would like to remind anyone reading this of how convinced and committed I was to the Church.  I have a Theology BA and spent all of my young adult years in ministry. 


The first one I would like to bring up is Sacramentals.

CCC = Catechism of the Catholic Church (official teachings of the Catholic Church) 

CCC 1667 "Holy Mother Church has, moreover, instituted sacramentals. These are sacred signs which bear a resemblance to the sacraments. They signify effects, particularly of a spiritual nature, which are obtained through the intercession of the Church. By them men are disposed to receive the chief effect of the sacraments, and various occasions in life are rendered holy."

Sacramentals are things like Holy Water, Holy Salt, Blessed Objects, Relics, etc.  They are tangible things that Catholics really believe hold supernatural power.  Most of these things obtain their power through prayers the clergy says, but others like relics (pieces of body parts or clothing worn by a saint) have the power in them on their own.

This concept is supported from passages in the Bible.  You can read more about them here: https://www.osv.com/MyFaith/ChurchSeasonsandFeasts/Article/TabId/673/ArtMID/13718/ArticleID/16133/What-Are-Sacramentals.aspx

The thing is that they hold a very similar concept to superstitious items like rabbits feet, voodoo dolls, magic spells, and other things we know to be nonsense.  Why do Catholics give them a pass? Because they WANT them to be real.  Once again it comes down to the desire to be able to effect this world in ways that go beyond our natural powers.   For example, many Catholics wear scapulars, put medals up or crosses (all blessed of course) in order to.....  get this....  ward off evil spirits.  Hello?

It comes down to an actual belief that there are all sorts of realities that are completely unmeasurable and unprovable. Ephesians 6:12 "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places."

Catholics teach that, somehow, power and grace is attached to these real items turning them into actual supernatural power sources.   Cool.  Yeh, it would be cool.  So would most mythological, superstitious, magical stuff.  Fortunately, there is no proof whatsoever that there is any shred of truth to it.  Thank Heavens!  Opps.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Today is the day, I can say what I want to say

Before I had six kids and little time, I would have not put this recording up for others to hear.  But...  that is not today.  This is what I can offer today to say...  I am glad I am alive.

Hopefully one day I can make more positive secular music...

video

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Openly Secular Day


HAPPY OPENLY SECULAR DAY!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

a brief history of disbelief


I really wish we humans would learn from the past.  I wish we could synthesize the knowledge of our ancestors.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Memes -why Religions spread

I think this video may have been one of the most formative talks in helping me to understand just what happened to me when I became a Catholic. None of my family was Catholic except my step-father, but he was not a practicing Catholic.

This idea came to me in the form of information and community.  It spread itself through its' hosts.

I hope many will take the time consider this talk by Dan Dennett:


Monday, April 13, 2015

On Being MEAN

One of the most frustrating things about communicating with believers is that when feeling pressed they revert to "stop being mean." In so many words, I should say. People who I have known for a very long time, or who in any other conversation would reason with me and communicate honestly, shut down and claim that I am calling them dumb.  They say things like "you must think I am silly because you think what I believe is silly." Nothing could be further from the truth.

I was a hardcore committed Christian for 20 years.  I would be calling myself dumb and silly. It is obvious to me that there are many "good" reasons to have faith. The only problem I have found is that they just aren't real or enough to justify it if given the evidence. So, that is why I communicate about this. Not to say someone is silly, but that I believe that they are reasonable enough to think critically.  All the more reason why I am so baffled when they wont do it.  It really shocks me when loving and kind people will turn on me in an instant as if they don't know my character just because I challenge their faith.

I definitely believe everyone should have the right to believe whatever they will.   I also agree that to harp on the topic can get very old very quickly if there is nothing else in the relationship.  But that being said, if we have a relationship and you just reject to consider my thoughts on this topic, it leads me to question the depth of these relationships.  Faith has a great ability to unite and divide.  I am getting pretty sick of the dividing.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Hanging on by a thread

I am so grateful to be free from religion!  Sometimes I get the creeps from my former mythical delusions.  I may think, "what if", "who knows" or I wish that there was a bigger meaning.   But these days it is so short lived or filled with such memories of horror that it is easily dismissed.  My former tendency towards faith is "hanging on by a thread." I am not sure if it will ever be completely gone, but I am so glad to not have to struggle with it further!

Over the past few months I have been observing people who I encounter with claims of faith.  Lately I see in them such a trend towards feelings of powerlessness or desire for magic or just an easy answer.  They have guilt for some reason that they want to sooth.  I wish I could help people to not give up hope because life is hard.  We live in an age where there are many REAL resources for helping improve our situations.  And if there are no real resources, we have no need to feel guilt for wishing to escape horrible circumstances.