Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Basic History of Halloween

Halloween is upon us once more. Originally known as All Hallows Evening it is a holiday that stretches back in time and is primarily derived from a Celtic festival that took place at the end of summer. During this time it was believed that the barrier between the real world and the Celtic Otherworld was thin. The Otherworld was a place where ghosts and gods with both good and evil intentions liked to hang out. This festival still goes on today in certain countries under the name Samhain. It was believed that by disguising oneself as a malicious or mischievous ghoul one could avoid being tormented or confronted by any spirits who might cross over from Otherworld.

Modern day celebration involves little if any real superstition about ghosts and demons. Halloween has become a secular Holiday on which children and adults alike dress as their favorite fictional characters. While gruesome costumes designed to invoke fear are still common they are far from the only costumes available and essentially anything is open from inanimate objects to loveable children's characters. Children spend the night typically collecting candy and in general Halloween is just an all around good time... or is it?

Believe it or not there is a strong anti-Halloween undercurrent boiling just beneath the surface here in America. Who, you may wonder, would be silly enough to take Halloween seriously? Fundamentalist Christians, that's who. While the majority of mainstream Christianity has stamped its collective seal of approval on All Hallows Eve there is a fringe of vocal fundamentalists who have all but declared war on what has become a secular silly children's holiday. Many fundamentalists believe that Halloween encourages pagan beliefs about spirits and ghouls that are not shared by Christians and that such actions invites demonic spirits, which they do believe in. It is no secret that Halloween horror was influenced by the ancient Celts and that symbolism of the Occult, of Devils, dead people and spirits, is very common around Halloween time.

Harmless Holiday or Satanic Celebration?

Rather than accept the Holiday as harmless make-believe many Fundamentalists view Halloween as a glorification of Satan, death, witchcraft and mischief. This Fundamentalist war on Halloween bears a striking resemblance to their attacks on Rock and Roll music, Dungeons and Dragons, and Pokemon. Unwittingly they are basing their anti-Halloween position on superstitious beliefs that ironically mirror those of the ancient Celts who started the celebration centuries ago. The belief that spirits or devils will come forth BECAUSE of dressing as spirits and devils is extremely similar to the beliefs that such guises warded the spirits away.

Does dressing up as a cartoonish depiction of the Devil really invoke the wrath of Evil Spirits? Are children in danger of demonic possession when wearing such costumes? Are we teaching our children to view these very real demons as mere superstition, as mere characters to be dressed up as? And what about witchcraft? Exodus tells us to never allow a Witch to live... those words come straight from Yahweh's mouth! But its so hard, come Halloween, to tell the real Witches from those merely dressed as Witches for fun. Can we really, in good conscience, allow our children to dress as practitioners of Satanic rituals such as Witches?

Obviously all of those questions should leap out to you as patently absurd. It is one thing to maintain a belief in ghosts or devils but to claim that dressing as cartoonish depictions of them is dangerous or even downright immoral is silly. Yet that is JUST what some Fundamentalists do. If any of the nonsense shoveled out by Fundamentalists were true than demonic possession would be an extremely well understood phenomenon well-documented by science and NO ONE would be dumb enough to dress up as a Satanic character come Halloween. Most people of the world recognize the non-existence of such characters and even those who believe in Satan understand that he wouldn’t look like a red guy with a pitch-fork, goatee and curly mustache. Those depictions of Satan, as a Satyr, actually stem from the Greek God PAN.

Time for a Personal Experience

I know that anecdotal stories aren’t very good ways to make a point but the attacks on Halloween by Fundamentalist stupidity have effected me personally since my very early childhood. Most of you who were fortunate enough probably remember going out on Halloween to get bags and bags of candy and hang out with your friends while going door to door. Pretending to be someone else, particularly if its a character you were a fan of as a child, is a very fun experience. Halloween offers an opportunity to play pretend unlike any other. It is, in a way, like being in an actual MMORPG, in which Iron Man, the Ninja Turtles and Super Man can all hang out. But as a kid I never got to celebrate Halloween or go Trick-or-Treating, not once, EVER. The reason being - my Dad is a fundamentalist Christian.

We were not allowed to wear costumes or Trick-or-Treat on Halloween because Halloween was considered a day when Satan was glorified. It was a day when the Occult, and all the bad stuff that God and Jesus didn’t like, was being practiced by the masses at large. As if they had been brain-washed into it people fled their homes in droves and gave into the dark forces at work. Luckily my Mother explained it to me differently than my Father and while she was fully aware that Halloween was harmless we still didn’t get to celebrate it. So I had to listen to the stories of entire pillow cases and buckets filled with candy that my friends all talked about at school. My Dad still retains a number of Medieval attitudes. He believes that the Occult is all a product of Satan, that mental illness is often caused by demons and, still to this day, that Halloween is bad.

I still remember one incident that I will never forget in which a simple word search, containing Halloween related words such as Dracula, Werewolf, and Jack the Ripper, was confiscated by my Father. He scribbled scriptures on it and wrote a lengthy letter to my teacher about how the crossword was inappropriate for a sixth grader and that it glorified darkness. Later I won a prize for answering questions correctly in math class, the prize was some plastic vampire teeth... Thanks to my Father’s reputation, which had gotten around to every teacher I had, I was pulled out while they were giving out the prizes and asked if I wanted candy instead. Afraid of being punished if I picked the teeth I chose the candy.

So I experienced, first hand, the propaganda put forth by Fundamentalists against Halloween. Later in life I researched the subject and found that my Mother’s analysis had been correct. What my Father believed was unequivocally bullshit of the highest order.


While it may never be enough to convince Fundamentalists I hope this short analysis of Halloween has helped you understand the Holiday, and objections to it, a little better. There is, unfortunately, very little that can be done to combat such blind stupid superstition. Living in a world in which rational explanations and harmless Halloween fun must be maligned by those unable to tell fiction from reality is truly aggravating and frightening. Its the 21st Century and as much as I respect the right of people to believe what they want I also feel an obligation to dispel hollow baseless irrational superstition for what it is.

Happy Halloween everyone and may Satan invade your homes and possess you in your sleep!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Problem of Suffering

Today we're going to look at an issue that effects Christianity and all Monotheistic faiths, suffering.

In ancient times it was extraordinarily common for mortals to blame disaster, tragedy and catastrophe on the supernatural. Human beings have always struggled with the idea that disaster might be random or without cause. Our own ability to feel guilt leads us to believe that we deserved disaster. This type of thinking can still be seen today. If things are going well in our lives, for instance, someone might say "Someone up there must really like me". And when bad things happen we might say something like "someone up there must have it out for me". Even in modern day fundamentalism there are those that blame storms on homosexuality or abortion, or any other aspect of society they dislike, as the cause of God's wrath.

The problem is that for most Monotheists the God dishing out a heaping helping of wrath is meant to be a loving and merciful God. Polytheism, the belief in more than one god, has it much easier than Monotheism in this regard. Most polytheistic faiths cast their gods as being much more human like and often limited in power or scope. Zeus, for instance, is the god of lightning and his son Apollo is the god of the sun while his other son Hephaestus knows his way around a volcano. So they are limited in their scope and therefore each individually hold the blame for anything that might happen. Zeus get's a free pass if Hephaestus starts a volcanic eruption to punish the sinful mortals. Most gods in polytheism also have character flaws that are much more pronounced. They were not all characterized as loving and merciful beings.

The issue of suffering comes into sharp focus when the idea of childhood disease is mentioned. Few things are more heartbreaking and unfair than to see a child stricken with some incurable illness from which they will not recover. Monotheism has failed to explain why this happens. After all a small child has no sins and therefore the illness can hardly be seen as a punishment for some wrongdoing. So why exactly is an All Powerful All Loving allowing ten year olds to get cancer and die? This is another place where polytheism has the answer because their gods have limited power... A Monotheistic All Powerful God doesn't have such limits to hide behind. This brings me to one of the most famous atheistic arguments against God ever put forward and it comes from the Greek philosopher Epicurus some three hundred years before Christ is said to have lived:

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is impotent.
Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing? Whence then is evil?
Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

Epicurus states the problem perfectly. If God is truly good why isn't he intervening to prevent evil when that evil befalls good people. Most Monotheists get around this with the claim that we are ALL sinners but surely this cannot apply to a child. And what of a fetus infected with AIDS nearly from the moment of conception doomed to a horrible existence... surely it hasn't had a chance to sin before its life has even begun. The absurdity of Original Sin is apparent and while some may accept a very early age of accountability for sin I doubt any parent wants to accept the idea that their baby is born a sinner destined for hellfire. If that were the case children who died before being able to accept Christ would end up in Hell and although Yahweh might be cruel enough to do something like that in the Old Testament I admit that such would be low for the New Testament version of God.

Sins of the Father:

So where is this God? Why is it not preventing the needless deaths of starving children and children who get terminal illnesses? Surely they don't deserve this? From here we get the unpleasant idea that the sins of the parents have passed on to the children. The basis for this is none other than the Old Testament itself. Within Exodus 20 in the verses that collectively make up the Ten Commandments God promises to visit the sins of the Fathers onto the sons. To suggest to a couple upon the sudden illness of their child that some sin of theirs brought this upon their baby is disgustingly low. To create guilt where sadness already exists is absurd and to paint God as so petty as to take his vengeance out upon the most innocent ones among us is revolting. In visiting the inequity of the Fathers on the sons God would be violating the second line of Epicurus attack on theism. Not only is God, in this case, not willing to prevent evil but he is willing to directly commit an evil act against an innocent merely for the sake of revenge. Punishing the child for the sins of the Father is very similar to something a character tried in a super-hero movie that came out a few years ago...

In the Dark Knight Harvey Dent (aka Two Face, pictured above) decides that Commissioner Gordon has failed to save his beloved Rachel. This failure is a horrible sin and Two Face wants to punish Gordon but rather than kill Gordon he wants to take from Gordon the thing that Gordon loves the most. Sounding like Yahweh yet? Two Face decides to shoot Gordon's son. So Gordon's son will be punished for the sins of the Father. This sounds almost exactly like the first born of Egypt doesn't it? God's attempt at Collateral Damage against the Egyptians for slaughtering Hebrew babies. Maybe someone should explain to Yahweh that violence begets more violence.

All Powerful Will:

This brings me to another major point. The idea that God is All Powerful means something, it means that God is responsible for everything that goes on. I believe I've touched upon this briefly before. All Power = All Responsibility. Even if God manages to shirk responsibility onto other beings by offering them enough power to have free will if he still remains All Powerful than he still retains All Responsibility. It is just like Epicurus says, if he is not willing than he is malevolent plain and simple. If God is willing than everything would be fine since NOTHING could stand in the way of the Will of an All-Powerful being unless he wanted it to. In other words it is impossible for human beings to sin, or make any decision, without it being God's express will that we do so. If it was his Will that we be able to make our own choices and if he has the power to stop us from sinning at any moment by any means than how exactly is it our fault that we're sinners? Once again polytheism could weasel out of this problem but Monotheism cannot escape so easily.

Another thing many Monotheists will claim is that when God allows a child to die that God merely wanted that child up in Heaven. This is an absurd idea. If God truly wanted that child up in Heaven why would God allow that child to be sent to Earth only to suffer in a die in a horrifically painful way? And why, if God truly just wants the kid in Heaven, would he put his/her parents through the Hell of watching their young child be lowered into the ground?


Of course Monotheists will attempt to squirm their way around the problem of suffering because to do otherwise would be to admit their God is either impotent or malevolent. However I think I have demonstrated that if they were being intellectually honest they would admit just that. It is clear that God is either Malevolent, Impotent or merely imaginary (although we could just say he exists but is extraordinarily incompetent and therefore doesn't know how to use his power to stop suffering). In fact Epicurus put the nail in this coffin some three centuries before Christ was nailed to the cross.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Public Prayer is Anti-Christ

Many people are familiar with prayer. Prayer is the practice of invoking the supernatural using words. Much like an incantation or invocation it is designed to call upon a deity or being in order to communicate with them or ask for divine intervention for yourself or others. For anyone who's ever been a Christian or attended Church prayer is a very common thing within the context of a church service. The first thing I want to talk about this week is this practice of praying in public whether it be at the start of a church service or before the opening pitch of a baseball game.

Public Prayer was once far more commonplace than it is today. Thanks to advances in the Separation of Church and State most school and sport functions are now forbidden from offering up religiously specific prayers though some do still provide moments of silence for any so inclined to offer their own prayers. The Christian Fundamentalists here in the USA have taken offense to the banning of public prayer in schools and other institutions. The banning of prayer and Bible reading in schools actually came from an Atheist group and Christians have been on the war path ever since.

What many Christians seem to forget is that Jesus, the guy their ENTIRE RELIGION IS BASED ON, is actually against prayer in public. Scriptural evidence of Jesus' distaste for Public Prayer can be found in Matthew Chapter 6 just before Jesus gives his disciples his most famous prayer, the Lord's Prayer. Matthew 6:5-8 reads as follows:

"And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him."

Not only does Jesus tell his disciples to shut themselves away from the world when praying but he expresses extremely negative opinions of those sects which pray in public. From the babbling pagans to those who pray in the Synagogue. Jesus seems to understand the petty nature of public prayer and how people who pray in public end up more worried about APPEARING pious and SEEMING righteous. They are more concerned with their appearances and other people's opinions than with actually seeking God.

Another thing I'd like to mention is Jesus' use of the word babbling. The Amplified Bible says those that multiply words, or repeat the same words. In my opinion Jesus is likely talking about CHANTING, though I am certainly no theologian. Chanting and repetitious prayers are used in Catholicism and other forms of Christianity. The other thing that Jesus might be referencing is what is now known as speaking in tongues, also called Glossalalia. While most people believe that speaking in tongues is only a Christian phenomenon it has actually been observed in numerous religions and was well known even before Christianity (seriously, you can google it). The version of it commonly practiced today, which is essentially the spouting of gibberish repeatedly (often accompanied by writhing around on the floor) is not necessarily the same as that which was described in the Bible. The version of it spoken of Biblically is often said to give the speaker the ability to speak in any or all languages... not merely gibberish. So could Jesus have been speaking of a pagan version of Glossalalia?


It seems clear that modern day prayer taking place in Church services or anywhere else in public bears a close resemblance to the sort of prayer Jesus’ disliked. Keep this in mind the next time some moron says he/she wants there to be a national day of prayer or makes a stupid comment about how things would be better if prayer were back in schools. Also remember that nowhere and at no time does Jesus EVER tell them to pray to him so the next time you hear someone praying directly to Jesus remember they are doing it wrong.

Does Prayer Work?

Prayer is an attempt at making telepathic contact with a magical being in order to gain something for yourself or others. As such it is wholly faith based and every study that has ever looked into prayer has found it ineffective at doing, well, anything.

Many people take the stance that prayer is harmless and that if people want to believe that prayer assists them than they should be able to. While I agree that the right to Freedom of Religion is paramount to a free society I am also aware that prayer isn’t always harmless. In fact prayer can be deadly. There are numerous cases, both here in the Western world and abroad, of parents withholding medical care from their child in order to pursue supernatural alternatives. This is negligent, abusive and downright stupid behavior that can often lead to the child’s death from a disorder or disease that is entirely treatable by medical science.

So while praying that you get that promotion or meet the right girl may be harmless the attitudes prayer and religion in general can nurture can be quite dangerous. Another aspect of prayer that is detrimental is the Evangelist Conmen who pretend to do healings. In demonstrations eerily mirroring a scene from the Disney movie Pete’s Dragon these snake oil salesmen pretend they can cure everything from slight discomfort to cancer. A recent viral video showed one of these serpents pretending her could replace a woman’s plastic hip with a new hip replacement merely by pressing on her forehead and demanding Jesus to heal her.

Which is, of course, another issue with prayer. Treating Jesus like a celestial genie hardly seems right especially when he supposedly died for your sins. Then again Jesus himself admits that if you ask it shall be given to you. So then the effectiveness of prayer is meant to be, according to Christ 100% which leads to Christians coming up with rationalizations when their prayers go unanswered. False promises that lead to the Christian involved believing themselves to not have enough faith to get what they want or need or that the cure for their Mother’s cancer wasn’t part of God’s Will.

Here’s an experiment to see if prayer works: Walk into a graveyard. Nearly everyone you see in there, before their death, had people praying for them. You can claim it was “just their time” or that it was God’s will for them to die despite prayer however Jesus said ask and you shall receive, he also said the disciples would be able to raise the dead after he left. John 3:!6 also says that those who believe in Christ will have eternal life... Yet every year more and more people, many times while still young and having their lives ahead of them die even when being prayed for.

Conclusion and Wrap Up:

Prayer is a solution for nothing and does little aside from stimulating false hope. Here’s a suggestion instead of prayer - try to succeed on your own and lean on your fellow human beings because supernatural men in the sky aren’t going to help you. I know this comes as a surprise to most but even if gods exist I highly doubt they’re all that interested in us mortals and our back surgery or inability to get over our last girlfriend.

I leave you with one of my favorite phrases from before I was an atheist: “God helps those that help themselves” - my translation: “Stop sitting on your ass waiting for gods and messiahs and start making your life and this world a better place on your own.”

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Ten Commandments

I've mentioned them previously but in this week's post we're going to be dealing more in depth with the legendary Ten Commandments. I've heard, on numerous occasions, that these ten precepts are actually the basis for American law and government and I dealt with that topic in America is NOT a Christian Nation. Today, however, I want to focus on the fundamentalist viewpoints that these commandments are good and should still apply today. We shall deal with whether they apply today first.

Do the Commandments Apply Today to All Mankind?

The first time these commandments are listed in the Bible is in Exodus Chapter Twenty. If you read the chapter you'll notice that the second verse actually pokes holes in the idea that these Commandments are valid for Christians living in modern times. Verse 2 says:

"I am the Lord your God who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery."

So God has given these commandments to Moses so that he may pass them to the Hebrews, not to the entire world and certainly not to Christians. If, as the fundamentalists say, every word of the Bible is God's word than why would they not take God at his word... clearly God is laying these Commandments out for the Israelites.


The text of Exodus 20 proves that God is addressing the Hebrews exclusively.

Are the Commandments Good?

Now we get to the fun part, the analysis of each commandment. As you read over each verse I want you to not only think of what it says but also what could have gone in its place. Remember that according to Christians these are some of God's best moral laws and this moral code is meant to be a basis for our own Modern laws here in the USA. Think about that idea as you read.

Commandment 1:

3 Do not have any other gods before me. 4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, 6 but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.


This is, for the most part, accepted as the first commandment although it takes several verses to convey the very simple idea that God hates religious freedom. He is so jealous, in fact, that he is willing to punish children who may not be guilty of anything for the sins of their Father all the way to a fourth generation. So Christianities supposed bastion of morality actually depicts God as jealous and unjust. It also shows God to be in direct conflict with one of the founding principles of Western Civilization - Freedom of Religion.

Commandment 2:

7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.


The Blasphemy Commandment. Most fundamentalist Christians wrongfully believe that saying "Oh My God" or "For God's Sake" constitute blasphemy. I always found this idea humorous even when I myself was a Christian. God's name is not God and it would seem many Christians forget the word God is merely a title, a description, another word for deity. The God of the Bible goes by many names, Yahweh, Adonai, Elohim and Jehovah among others but when was the last time you heard those being used in "blasphemy?". Why is God so concerned with his name being misused and abused? Is God so petty a being as to be worried about how people are talking about him behind his back. Is he so concerned with getting his due respect that he refuses to forgive any who misuse his good name? Well, yes actually. Any who slander God, according to the Bible itself, the Lord will not acquit (other translations say God will not hold anyone guiltless, others say God will not leave them unpunished). So rather than use this slot to, say, prevent children from starving by mandating child care or to outlaw rape God decides that protecting his name from being used wrongly in conversation is more important.

Commandment 3:

8 Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. 9 For six days you shall labor and do all your work. 10 But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. 11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it.


Again we see the God of the Bible wasting Commandments on utter self-absorbed nonsense. God spent six days making the world and so he demands that the Israelite also shouldn’t work on the Sabbath. Many Christians mistakenly assume the Sabbath is on Sunday but such is not the case, in fact in many languages the word for Saturday actually stems from the word Sabbath. Saturday was the Sabbath, not Sunday, so all those businesses in many areas that close for the “Lord’s” day on Sunday are actually closed on the wrong day. The true issue here is that God is demanding people not work on the Sabbath even if they need to. Other verses suggest a pretty strict punishment for working on the Sabbath and Jesus almost gets in trouble for it in the New Testament. Another thing to notice is that slaves are to be given the day off as well. So God could have taken the time to tell the Israelites that slavery is wrong, instead he decides he’d rather tell them to take a day off now and then. What utter nonsense. Once again the Deuteronomy Version is essentially the same, the only distinction is that verse 15 throws in God bragging, once more, about having brought them out of Egypt.

Commandment 4:

12 Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.


Believe it or not I have very few qualms with this one. Respecting parents makes sense and while it may not be quite as important as other things God could have put here in the fourth slot it actually isn’t all that bad of an idea. Of course it becomes a problem if you have parents who are abusive but given that the Old Testament says that sparing the rod spoils the child I’m assuming abuse is the norm. In which case honoring your Father and Mother might save you from getting beat.

Commandment 5:

You shall not murder.


One of the few Commandments that God got right. The issue I have with it is that the God of the Bible later sends out the Israelites on numerous genocidal campaigns often involving killing innocent civilians. The death of soldiers is one thing but to go out and wipe out civilian populations should still count as murder, even if it happens during war. So this Commandment works but Yahweh refuses to stick with it and even violates it himself from time to time. One has to wonder how a God can be righteous if he can’t even follow the simple morals he gives to a group of primitives.

Commandment 6:

You shall not commit adultery


While certainly cheating on your spouse is a low down dirty thing to do should it really be part of the Ten Commandments. Remember that fundamentalists claim these are fundamental moral precepts from God. Why is God so concerned with our sex lives? And if he is concerned about sex this would be the perfect place to put restrictions on rape or pedophilia. Nope, God’s more concerned that you stay true to whoever you’re with. Sorry rape victims, you’re on your own (and according to Deuteronomy 22 you have to marry your attacker).

Commandment 7:

You shall not steal


Again this is one I don’t have many qualms about. Seems like a pretty sound proposition. Don’t take what doesn’t belong to you. If these are legal directions I have no issue. But if these are meant as moral directions as some Christians suggest than what does God think of the plight of an orphan or someone who must steal to eat? Surely that is not morally wrong? Would God punish them in their desperation for stealing just to survive?

Commandment 8:

You Shall not bear false witness against your neighbor


In many Christian denominations this is actually Commandment number nine. Please note that I am following the Catholic and Lutheran 10 Commandments. In actuality Exodus Chapter itself does not introduce them as 10 complete commandments or offer any guidance on where each commandment ends and the next one begins. The Commandment is generally assumed to be You Shall Not Lie, although the language it uses sounds more like that used in a courtroom. Lying is something that is fundamental to human survival which can often be a morally correct action to take. For instance the famous example of lying to the Nazis about hiding Jews. While certainly lying under oath, or offering false witness, are both bad things surely an All Knowing God could have come up with something better.

Commandment 9 and 10:

17 You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.


These Commandments put restrictions on your ability to desire something someone else owns. This is essentially the creation of thought crime similar to Jesus’ statements that lust for a woman is automatic adultery. In fact Jesus is so serious about it that he tells people to tear out their eyes if they “cause them to sin” during the famed Sermon on the Mount as told in Matthew Chapter 5. Not only do these final two commandments create a thought crime if you covet your neighbors stuff by they also mention slaves, again. God had opportunities to abolish slavery, he even mentioned slavery twice, yet he decided to make coveting your neighbors goods forbidden.


I conclude that both assumptions made by Fundamentalist Christians are wrong. The Ten Commandments are neither good nor are they valid today. They are directed specifically at the Israelites and reflect not divine wisdom or divine morals but a moral code that is very much man made. If, indeed, these Ten had come from an Almighty and righteous being surely they would be the most solid moral framework ever conceived. It is clear that the Ten Commandments are not divine in origin.

Another thing to consider is the fact that Moses, in a fit of rage, actually broke the tablets that the original ten were written on. Later God has him transcribe new things down on a new set of tablets in Exodus 34. Amongst those... a commandment to never boil a goat in its Mother’s milk.