MC’s latest essay concerns the role of intellect — and its vulnerability — in matters involving religion and quasi-religious systems.

by MC

There is religion, then there is other religions, and then there is truth. It is not religion to seek after truth, but to hold to untruth is religion.

There is (or was) a creative force. That force created truth, but that truth is elusive.

Man has a consciousness which is unique because it is self-programming; a cat runs a cat operating system and does not deviate from it (although we, with our intellect, can perceive differences in our pets, the pets themselves cannot as far as we know). A man has a man operating system too, and a mind of his own which means that he can and does deviate from the basic ‘animal’ that he is.

The mind it trained from day one, and comes to overlay the animal operating system with what we call a culture. In many people there is yet another layer over and above the culture that we call the intellect. These three things act in concert together to form the personality.

The personality can, through its intrinsic free will, choose to seek truth, or to hold onto a religion without question.

Holding on to and not questioning a religion means that we are prepared, within the bounds of our intellect, to accept lies as truths and to discard apparent truths that are not convenient to us.

The human personality can even hold contradicting memes, each of them as a truth, as part of its religion. This is known as cognitive dissonance.

Each religion has a ‘god’, a supreme being. That god may be human, divine or esoteric. It may be unique to the individual or part of a group meme.

Islam, one of those group memes, holds as its god a double act of ‘god’ and ‘prophet’, the prophet being the sole mouthpiece of the ‘god’ (who is otherwise occult). The prophet alone is the object of the earthly adoration (and emulation) of its human followers. Unfortunately, this particular example of humanity was a desert brigand who murdered,raped and pillaged himself to great power. The earthly manifestation of Islam is therefore that of a wanton criminal to whom was revealed a book that catalogued and confirmed the criminality of its author, and set that criminality in stone.

Christianity is similar,except that the book had many authors and was not intrinsically criminal. It forbade theft; it forbade rape, fornication and adultery; and it forbade murder and human sacrifice (with apparently one exception — a cognitive dissonance).

The difference between the two is aptly illustrated by the idea of world domination. The spirit behind Islam demands world domination, by force if necessary, but when Jesus was offered world domination (by the spirit of Satan) He rejected it.

Most other man-based religions (including political religions) have fallen for the ‘one world’ meme and are happy to bring it into being by coercion and deception. In this they follow Islam rather than Christianity.

Other monotheistic or polytheistic religions are not participants in the world-domination game, and are thus more internalized.

The seeker after the creator’s truth has an open mind. She does not clutch at straws but considers the options: What is worse? The mathematical impossibility of evolution or the intrinsic para-normality of a creator-god? One can look out of the window and see the creation in all its glory; it is reality. But is it an accidental reality or a created reality? And if created, who or what was the intelligence of this creation? These are hard questions which have divided societies.

At the base level in me is the animal. If that middle level in me — the culture level — is corrupted, then no matter the intellect, it is the animal that comes through.

When an individual starts to act like an animal we call him psychotic. When a group of humans starts to act like animals we are stricken into immobility. Our animal says ‘fight or flee’, but the higher orders of culture modify that fight or flee response. However, if culture and intellect are confused by conflicting memes we are then caught in the high beam of panic and its resulting inertia.

Eighty-odd years ago our society faced a whole nation gone psychotic and acting out the feral ‘one world’ animalism. To our benefit we stood against it, and eventually overcame it — the paradox being that we only dealt with the acute problem of National Socialism; we did not deal with the chronic, and far more dangerous, religion of International Socialism (Communism).

Socialism seeks to control and enslave, it seeks to close the open mind of the seeker after truth by presenting the individual with a set of pseudo-truths which are designed to permeate that middle part of the brain, inserting the desired external doctrine and dogma as a substitute for the products of the internal intellectual search for truth. Thus the intellect is shut down and ‘truth’ is prescribed.

Once the mind is paralyzed, the ‘animal’ becomes dominant, and the subject is open to any or all suggestion from its ‘gods’ or betters (commissars) without discernment and for fear of being ostracized.

This is where education is so important, along with a homogeneity of culture; diversity makes for cultural confusion, rendering the subject more amenable to pathological doctrinal injection. The values upon which the culture of the West prospered are compromised by a plethora of ‘other’ values, so we freeze when caught in the main beams; we are incapable of making a clear set of decisions. Decisions necessary for democracy to work.

Profitable education trains the intellect (if any) to discern truth. The attack on education started with the promotion of ‘equality’ and the elimination of ‘streaming’ (the separation of schoolchildren into groups of similar intellect). Properly educated, one is equipped to think and research for oneself and fend off the propaganda. The intellect is the human brain’s defense mechanism against slavery, but once one is enslaved it is very difficult to escape.

Despite everything, some intellects are strong enough to resist even the cradle-to-grave indoctrination, and to break out of the resulting mind prison. The wise slave owner is quick to spot and isolate these resilient intellects, hence demonstrating the absolute need to control the flow of information and render them speechless.

The media are powerful, and can convince most of us that there is a ‘free lunch’ if only we continue in our slavery. That free lunch costs somebody dear and the intellect wants to know whom, but the mind sees the food and the animal just sees the word ‘free’. In an intellect-free zone we are all vulnerable to an assault-intellect with a 50 IQ box magazine — a PR-15 maybe.

Taking a young vulnerable mind to school is an act of faith. In a good school the pupils will be taught to use what intellect they have to good advantage. Those with an abundance of intellect will be given the self-confidence to use it well, but how do you teach a child 50 points off the mean to use his intellect to best advantage? The 50 IQ can hardly think at all; the 150 IQ is so ‘different’ as to be in a different sub-species. Yet political correctness dictates that they are all born ‘equal’ and therefore must have the same one-size-fits-all schooling.

If one assumes ‘equality’, one can fill the mind with diversity and thus confusion, paralyzing the intellect, remembering that the mind provides the motivation for intellectual activity. If a child is taught to be ashamed of his intellect, as an item of exclusivity and division, then the norm becomes to hide and act dumb, so the intellect becomes stagnant and possibly pathogenic.

In a society of ‘equality’ the intellectual is therefore the one whose intellect conforms to a set pattern, a pattern pre-dictated from above. One must believe in man-induced climate change. One must believe that drug companies have our best interests at heart. One must believe that conservatives are rabid criminal fools and that guns load themselves and shoot people at random.

One must assume that the treasure chest is bottomless and that people who work can pay ever higher taxes, that the country can borrow infinite amounts of cash (and pay it back out of future profits), that the country no longer needs to make things and sell them, that Silicon Valleys can only exist in California and that financial centers are chained to New York.

One can also point the finger of accusation at God-centred religion, all the time forgetting that the man-centred religions have always paid a huge price in other people’s blood and treasure. That Islam is a religion of ‘peace’ with an accumulated victim count of some 300,000,000 over 1400 years. That is 214,000 per year, some 590 per day on average. Nothing much has changed; it is still running in the hundreds per day.

One could easily ‘imagine’ that there are forms of ‘peace’ that are just too toxic to handle and are unsafe to all mankind.

And it’s all in the mind…

MC lives in the southern Israeli city of Sderot. For his previous essays, see the MC Archives.

44 thoughts on “Intellect

  1. “One can also point the finger of accusation at God-centred religion, all the time forgetting that the man-centered religions have always paid a huge price in other people’s blood and treasure. ”

    And then there are real freethinkers: men and women worshiping the beauty of every day knowing that they are mortal and that this world is the best and only one given to them by virtue of their birth – on a planet whose supreme uniqueness is leaving them in awe and humbleness.

    Did I forget to say that these feel no need of God, god or divinity?

      • Yes he had. That was his point. He figured it out.

        Animal instincts. Culturally-blinded. Self-censoring rationalization (intellectual).

        • Glad I have inspired you, gentlemen, in your spirited – dissent, may I say?

          • “Animal instincts. Culturally-blinded. Self-censoring rationalization (intellectual).”

            Forgive me Lu, was replying to Roy that you were excellent.

            My assumption was that none of these three things formed your identity: either by having good parents or for the majority of us, exposed to the pain for getting out of what we got into.

            Those who offer Social Security or theReligion of Peace will kill for the human spoils.

          • Excuse me, gentlemen. Apparently I don’t understand the jargon. Anybody here speak English?

    • I am a freethinker yet I am also a believer. I find the “way of belief in a higher force” to be a better way to live, having tried it both ways. Yet, I do not hold my beliefs without doubting; I know I don’t have Truth. In fact, I believe that we humans don’t have access to Truth.

      I don’t see an important split between the religious and nonreligious; I have met devoted atheists who were as unpleasant human beings as one can imagine. I see a split between people who have the humility to know they cannot access Certainty, and those who don’t. And once you get there, it matters little if a person holds onto religion or some secular creed. They both can lead you astray, and they both can enrich your life, depending. 🙂

      • Does God’s existence dependent on human belief? What if God did not believe in humans? Does “salvation” – or whatever snake oil some charlatan is peddling – depend on believing? I’m sure these are not new question. 😉

  2. Thanks for your short essay; I think along those same lines sometimes. I don’t really understand religion, and I find it both troubling and interesting that so many humans have adhered to it over time. If you think about God and offer yourself up to the “deity” faithfully, that is all you can do as a human, the offering of yourself to the thought you made up or heard about, sort of like a chalice. But the minute you fill the chalice, it’s all just imagination. Mohammad was a sick child, epileptic, hallucinations, psychological problems, no father, mother dead at 8 years old. Sad, then he is spoiled , gets some sort of psychotic control over himself, is taken care of by a wealthy co-dependent woman. Then it is all gone again and he is back there without, so he became a psychopathic criminal at just the right time in history. Now Muslims emulate his psychotic prescription he invented for himself to control his epilepsy. Crazy! But the thing is about religion, look about at the major religions over the past 3,000 years; there has only been about 7-12 of them; then think about all the billions of humans who followed the teachings of maybe a dozen men. I find that really disturbing and interesting at the same time. Twelve men seek out their own truth, and billions upon billions of primates just accept that as their “truth”. And that leads me to think why do we as primates even think about God, except as a way to eat. But what is it in the Galaxy that makes us think like that. Its not God, but what is it? Or are we just not fully evolved as a species, it’s almost comparable to the way animals can sense natural disasters when humans can’t. That’s not God, although you simplify it and say it is God. Strange planet. The truth is out there.

    • Either that, or there’s something in human nature (we might say, “written in the heart of man”) that understands that there’s more here than meets the eye.

  3. Mike, a very interesting essay. There are, I see, various ways to look at equality. You can assume equality means “everybody is born equal.” Clearly not so. Or you can assume it means “equality before the law” which is not a bad idea. Equality of opportunity — that one is more a myth than reality. Or it can mean — and I personally assume it means — that people are born very inequal, but that a society that builds into itself equalizing mechanisms is a society more likely to be peaceful and harmonious than that which seeks to deepen and perpetuate the inborn inequalities. The latter society is very likely to be riven with conflict, from the get-go.


    • Well, the apology for being (habitually) sarcastic is mine … and do not get me wrong: the spiritual background Christianity bestowed on us, so palpable in my birth continent of Europe, is perhaps the ultimate defense factor against the Cult Of Death.

      I am afraid that the Reckoning Day draws nigh …

    • Whilst humanity is certainly not born ‘equal’ there is an assumption in left leaning circles that ‘nurture’ is of more effect than ‘nature’ and if society was/is rebuilt around this assumption, then it would be a more socially just society. This leads into the ‘one size fits all’ education that we now see is the vogue, it has been a disaster, producing millennial sheeple who lack basic cognitive skills. But in hindsight we can see that this was always its aim.

      • Mike, your first sentence goes against the Founding documents in the American Constitution:

        The second paragraph of the United States Declaration of Independence starts as follows:

        We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed;[7]

        The Virginia Declaration of Rights, chiefly authored by George Mason and approved by the Virginia Convention on June 12, 1776, contains the wording:

        all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights of which . . . they cannot deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.[8]

        George Mason was an elder-planter who had originally stated John Locke’s theory of natural rights:

        All men are born equally free and independent and have certain inherent natural rights of which they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; among which are the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.[9]

        Mason’s draft was accepted by a small committee and then rejected by the Virginia Convention. Thomas Jefferson, a competent Virginia lawyer, saw this as a problem in legal writing and chose words that were more acceptable to the Second Continental Congress.

        The Massachusetts Constitution, chiefly authored by John Adams in 1780, contains in its Declaration of Rights the wording:

        Article I. All men are born free and equal, and have certain natural, essential, and unalienable rights; among which may be reckoned the right of enjoying and defending their lives and liberties; that of acquiring, possessing, and protecting property; in fine, that of seeking and obtaining their safety and happiness.[10]


        What has been lost is the idea of equality of opportunity. Socialists, and their ilk, demanded that it be twisted into “equality of outcome” and that was never the intention behind the founding idea that “all men are created equal”. It would be generations till that became ALL men, and then all people. But it’s there as a germ of an idea; otherwise there could have been no Civil War in this country, and no further clarification with the Equal Right Amendment added later.

        Human beings, tangled as we are in our own fear and greed, have been twisting those words ever since. I like “The Course in Miracles” idea that we live, at all times, in either fear or love. And at no time has our culture been more riven by fear…C.S. Lewis warned us, though, as have the playwrights done in each generation: the only- ONLY, SOLE – path through life is a continuing maturity in what it means to experience forgiveness of ourselves and of others.

        We are born broken and rageful. That tiny baby, sleeping so sweetly, is a bundle of need and rage…when we successfully calm the latter, by meeting his needs (and none can do that perfectly), then the more “equal” to his potential he becomes, and the larger his compassion. But it will always be only partial. That’s why I like the concept of Original Sin, though the wording is outdated.

        We are simply born too soon. Long before we can communicate effectively, we have overwhelming needs that must be met by others. We can only ever partially “say” what those needs are for the first year or so…the more quickly we acquire languages – words, laughter, music, interactional play – the more fully human we become…

        I like the Chinese idea of ‘nurture’ – i.e., the world of the child is central to the family for the first two years. After that, the child conforms to the family world around him…yes, it always remains only partially realized, parents being human, but it is still a good operating principle.

        The Native Indians who used a papoose – I see a variation of this in Russian immigrant baby/mother interaction – kept the child so close to the mother’s beating heart that she could tell when the infant was going to eliminate any waste and held him away from her body while he did his ‘business’. The rest of the time he spent growing, eating, becoming accustomed to his mother’s skin and smell. Becoming human.

        Remember Bowlby’s experiments with monkeys to demonstrate primate needs? Like that.

        • The socialist propaganda billboards (about 40 years ago) pictured 5 babies of various shades and claimed them all to be ‘equal’. At that time they had equality before the law (they don’t any more), and they had some equality of opportunity (not much of that opportunity left I’m afraid). But what the socialists/SJWs were claiming was that although the babies had equality in ability at birth but that their ‘class’ (nurture) would eventually decide their outcomes and that this was wrong. So they set about curing the problem in the normal socialist way, they knobbled the high ability kids until a satisfactory lowest common standard was achieved .

          The Constitution is particularly referencing legal rights whereas the social engineering referred to above was specifically trying to enforce a uniformity of ‘ability’ and ‘achievement’ upon the assumption that those 5 babies were without measurable variances at birth and should therefore have achieved ‘equally’ at 20. Part of this process involved removing the child from its mother for much of the day and from the age of 2/3 to attend a toddler indoctrination center (state supervised kindergarten) to be ‘socialized’.

  4. The Gospel of Thomas has a koan that sums this up.

    “(3) Jesus said to his disciples: Compare me, tell me whom I am like. Simon Peter said to him: You are like a righteous angel. Matthew said to him: You are like a wise philosopher.”

    These voices represent the two extremes of the agents of priests and politicians indoctrinated in God or Man.

    So the question for the reader is who is Jesus.

    Thomas said to him: Master, my mouth is wholly incapable of saying whom you are like.

    And this is difficult, to describe a human being who is not a God-submitter or a preferential-identity receiver. Someone who sees Heaven and Earth will one day pass away from human memory of the battles of past Gods and Empires.

    Jesus said: I am not your master, for you have drunk, and have become drunk from the bubbling spring which I have caused to gush forth (?).

    Mental clarity helps other people see the obvious they could not see for themselves. To good people, they appreciate the regret seeing what a misguided ass they had been. To their handlers, who get their tax given joyfully, this is not a good thing.

    “And he took him, withdrew, (and) spoke to him three words.

    What those three words were, we’re not supposed to know.
    We are meant to get to them by their complete meaning by following the deductive reasoning:

    Now when Thomas came (back) to his companions, they asked him: What did Jesus say to you?

    Thomas said to them: If I tell you one of the words which he said to me, you will take up stones (and) throw them at me; and a fire will come out of the stones (and) burn you up.

    So something has to offend someone who sees only a righteous angel, and someone who only sees righteous philosopher (the two sides of Jesus that the men filtered through their mental conditioning, and scorned the other).

    I don’t have to tell you the words. These words are beaten, murdered, and have their organs removed for trophy and transplant by those who have hot coals of pride on their heads.

    The meek. The ordinary. The normal.

    • 39 years saved and I have never in that time EVER heard of the Gospel of Thomas.

      • I have a copy. It was a document found at Nag Hammadi in Egypt in 1945, from about 100 AD. Some scholars consider it to be in the Gnostic tradition, but a lot of the sayings in it are also found in the canonical Gospels.

        • Correction: It’s from well into the second century A.D., not 100 A.D. Yes, a lot of the sayings are close to the canonical Gospel traditions because the Coptic Gospel of [pseudo-]Thomas depends on the canonical ones.

          If you own a copy of the United Bible Societies’ _Synopsis Quattor Evngeliorum_, you will find a copy of Coptic [pseudo-]Thomas in the back. It is a Gnostic document, and completely lacks the historical contexts found in the canonical Gospels.

          BTW, Bible scholars who tout this work as somehow preserving authentic traditions not found in the canonical Gospels tout Gnosticism as a faith that was much more accepting of women. However, Coptic [pseudo-]Thomas ends with the disciples asking Jesus “What about Mary”, and getting the answer that Mary will be made male. Patriarchal as the accepted Old and New Testaments are, I can’t find a line in them that suggests that the holy women will be other than women in Heaven.

          Joe Mudd, I’ve been an active Evangelical Christian for the bulk of my adult life, have read through the OT and NT more times than I can count at this point, and know of the Gospel of Thomas from having a Master of Divinity degree (BTW, my teachers did not regard it as anything more than an apocryphon much later than the 27 books of the New Testament). You have not really missed much.

          I’m telling you this because years ago, some of my relatives who prefer the seat of the scornful bought me Elaine Pagels’ _Gnostic Gospels_ to supposedly set me straight. Pagels is one of the “go to” folks you see on History Channel, has taught at Princeton and Hunter, and is Exhibit A in Uncle Kepha’s case that mainstream scholarship in religious studies stinks. Pagels, a touter of [pseudo-]Thomas, gets the known facts of Christian history in the first four centuries flat out wrong.

          • Your relatives were kind.

            “The Diegesis”, a discovery of the origin, evidences and early history of Christianity by Reverend Robert Taylor as he languished in prison in the early 1800s is a good read.


            Bart Ehrman, and Richard Carrier are excellent researchers in to the early history of Christianity who are on YouTube.

      • The Gospel of Thomas (verse 13 here by the way), appears to present an antithesis to those who appear to know God’s Business and those who appear to fully know Man’s. Two very dangerous paths. It is Islam and Socialism in our own day as was Hitler and Communism 80 years ago and Judaism and Hellenism in their violent clash of cultures back then.

        An attempt to unhypnotize the hypnotized.

        Jesus was attributed to be many things, as today subjective Africans use him for prosperity and the removal of Juju while White Anglicans afraid to offend have objectified him as the receiver of everyone in the ego-state of ‘just as we are’.

        These extreme ends of the fear-spectrum to lose earthly or heavenly rewards always has an establishment of hustlers running the show.

        The Gospel of Thomas makes the readers think. For those who do not taste death.

        Is it an appendium to the canonical Gospels, or the actual secret saying of Jesus after a day out telling those fatalist God-Botherers that their sicknesses are based on pride and resentment and the wearing God on their sleeves? These two existential mindstates that if they die to, they will find they live. To find the bully cannot control them any more.

        That the human brain is constructed in its natural state to hold two acknowledgements: that of the perfect God and that of the perfect Man. Allah and Muhammad are not; Communism and minimum 40% female committees are not: though they create hate-speech, imprisonment and death as though they are.

        The kingdom of God really is within you, you are not the unworthy slave that they portray you as, and this they rather not have you know.

        This version of Jesus, who inspired everyone to be prophets to go out and heal the sick by getting them to repent and find that God is within them as living water, was not what the Churches paid for. Their cup up-to-today is only to clean on the outside and wait for Judgement Day to receive your Blessing.

        A bit late, but they got their full use out of you and an oligarch doesn’t care which strings are used.

        • Have to demur. Anything worthwhile in [pseud0-]Thomas is cadged from the canonical Scriptures, and most of the rest is Gnostical nonsense–including the belief that Mary will have to become male to get into Heaven (and I am neither a Mariolatrous Roman Catholic nor a liberal advocate of women’s ordination). It’s perhaps the start of an unhealthy tradition that dishonors all of our mothers.

          • Mary was never there.

            Just like the Cursed Fig Tree was never there.
            The withered vine was the Jewish Temple that didn’t produce the fruit.

            Simon Peter said to him, “Let Mary leave us, for women are not worthy of life.”

            Simon always gets it wrong. He is here, a patriachal misogynist.

            Jesus said, “I myself shall lead her in order to make her male, so that she too may become a living spirit resembling you males.

            She’ll drive a car, get a job, have her own house.

            For every woman who will make herself male will enter the kingdom of heaven.

            The kingdom of hell is every masculine mind removed from religion, (Islam), society, (Communism), and nature, (LGBT+).

            What was it you wanted to tell all your mommies?

    • He said;

      I am love


      I am human

      Or maybe

      I am God

      Or possibly even

      I am you

  5. So the intent is to make us all equal, without individuality, because to recognize individuality would be to recognize creative design apart from ourselves. Thus we all must be reduced to the lowest common denominator, semi-intelligent animal who responds to stimuli in a Pavlovian fashion. It is in that manner that we are readily managed so as to provide for the needs, comforts, wants and the agenda of the elite. No thanks, I will choose my God who loves me, dystopian as He may seem to others. I still have His sure word of prophecy. That and His love is all I really need.

  6. Very good essay. I find it interesting upon thinking about the word religion that Jesus never mentioned it. He did however say that His purpose in coming was to testify to the truth. He was answering Pilots question of “So you call yourself a king then?” and Jesus’s answer then included that those people who were of the truth or looking for the truth heard His voice.
    I was told that I was stupid for my entire childhood and adolescence, I believed it to be true until at 21 in jail for pot possession and sales I met Jesus at the absolute lowest point in my life. From that point on I became a voracious reader and would research interests into the wee hours of the AM. The truth is I was never stupid. I just didn’t learn like other people or the other kids in school and to this day I wonder how many me’s there are stuck in classrooms being held from learning from some stupid belief.
    The nice thing about being born again is that you get to start over. I wonder if that might not be the intent behind rehabilitating criminals? Too bad I had to have my Bible smuggled into jail but Islam is freely and openly pushed. At least it was back in the day and I have no reason to believe it has changed. What sort of rehabilitation is that?

    • The Bible is a record/encyclopedia/Thesaurus…a collection of the observations/impressions/theories/opinions/analyses, by the influential and impressed of the time, resulting in empirically documented truth.

      The quran is a crime instruction manual. Crime appeals to the undeveloped mind, as it is simpler and doesn’t require intellect.

      The development of intellect, based on the principle of truth, based on empirical evidence, is hard work.

      Keep on banging my friend and well spoken.

    • The story of Jesus partaking in the baptism of repentance and immediately with this resolve going head on, (for forty days and nights not eating anything), to seek and find the source to his attachments to the world.
      This was his reboot.

      This is being born again; not the prayer of surrender and new robes.

      For a while however, conversion makes everyone wake up with a new slate, a sense of ease, for their new job awaits, with a New Christian Identity… but then they will be making the same mistakes again, backsliding, blaming it on the demons, and then angry with God for not protecting them from temptation each day as they had prayed for, and then Jesus is cursed, and become worse off than they ever were, trapped with the smiling mask of a hypocrite. Ready for joining Islam for their peace permits evil in their name.

      So beware of easy converts and their reliance of the letter of the law. Dark forces grow within.

      If you repent and seek the face of your tormentors, it is the truth that sets you free by separation from them and your forgiveness that closes the wounds of your judgement and pride. They can shout and no more will you flinch.

      If on the other hand you submit and seek the forgiveness and approval of your violators, you have just made them your Masters, and only conforming to their Halal/Haram will set you free.

      A Muslim goads you to hate them. Their ‘radicals’ are everywhere. They want you to have this Christian compassion of learned avoidance and looking away, to submit this just one more time.

      To humble yourself therefore is to be able to apologise and forgive those you hurt and who hurt you from whom you ran away and feared retribution; or to escape and forget the old-self by prostrating yourself before a greater Authority who will take care of it by approval or rejection of them. To celebrate your new self. The skunk in sheep’s or lion’s clothing.

      Freedom, or a lifetime of checking your privileges.

  7. Brilliant, would be elating if the outlook weren’t so dire. Thank you very much for writing this.

  8. I am not impressed by MC’s essay. Islam may be anti-rational, but not Christianity. Isn’t it peculiar that in the medieval re-discovery of Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas and Maimonides (readers of the Old Testament) argued that ultimately their cannot be a conflict between revelation and reason, while Ibn Roshd (who read the Qur’an) argued that the two are necessarily bifurcated.

    Jesus Christ is God’s _Logos_–the Word, or even “rationality” of God. The whole of the tradition of Christian theology, prior to 18th century idiots and cowards like Friedrich Schleiermacher, related all loci of Christian teaching (doctrine) in logical manner.

    And, to nod to the Jews, I suspect that one reason why Maimonides is such a hard read is because as a Dhimmi, he knew he was venturing onto thin ice by sticking his nose into a dispute among Muslim thinkers.

  9. ” it forbade murder and human sacrifice (with apparently one exception — a cognitive dissonance).”
    Were you referring to Abraham and Isaac? Isaac walked back with his father. Many consider it as God testing Abraham. On the other hand, why would God need to do that? Didn’t He trust Abraham?

    Or you might be referring to the sacrifice of Christ. That one’s harder to deal with, especially with a “freethinker”.

    • When I took Scriptural theology/history at Wellesley, the contention was that this story of Abraham and Isaac was meant to convey the fact that Israeli and Judah-ic factions, separated by geography, both were distancing themselves from the surrounding “heathen” tribes practice of human sacrifice. And that as a result, the practice of circumcision arose to satisfy that human urge to pacify the gods. Or in their case (mostly) the One True God. The practice of circumcision allowed them to have it both ways (was going to say “a way to have your cake and eat it too but somehow that didn’t fit), easing the anxious human heart when facing a new way of being in the world.

    • If you believe Jesus died for your sins then there is a difficulty with TORAH (and the fact that the Roman cross was considered a pagan sacrificial torture instrument) and human sacrifice, however Yahushua himself gives the pharisees only one sign, vis. Jonah and 3 days and 3 nights in the fishes belly. To a Jew this is DAGON (Neptune) one of the Satan aliases, and the implication is that Yahushua dealt with ‘The Accuser’ in those three days/nights such that there is “therefore now no condemnation etc……”

      The Greek word ‘logos’ (word) is used in the LXX as a translation for the Hebrew ‘Torah’ and ‘Debar’ (Matters – singular of commandments ‘debarim’), so one could consider Yahushua as “Torah made flesh and dwelling amongst us”

      The alternative to a ‘human sacrifice’ is that Yahushua was judicially executed, descended into Hades and there neutralized Satan such that he could no longer prosecute our sins before Yah, and claim us as his bounty under Torah.

      This lines up far better with the Old Testament Torah, Writings and prophets.

      If you are interested in this I cover the subject:

      • The idea of a life sacrifice for atonement is Hebrew culture, and it was initially vitally serious in sacrificing your firstborn, a human being, to then just plain silly with doves in the Temple in Jesus’s lifetime, to today’s released batch of boiler-chickens.

        Transposing onto the dead Jesus as the spotless and eternal sacrifice for the removal of sins, was marketing genius. Returning to the gravitas of the original gravitas but now every meeting had out with the bread and wine. It made the new boy on the block, John the Baptist, with his baptism of repentance and soul-searching to separate from pride, with his disciples going out in pairs, obsolete. If only you Believe – you are saved. The Social Justice Warriors took over and replaced the original People of The Way.

        This has happened to Feminism, Civil Rights, Homosexual Therapy, and any cry for freedom and liberation turned into a faith of Believers. Ask a Russian Peasant about those that came after with their new university-subject degrees and a separation of deviners and Proletariat.

        • The SJW rhetoric of Faith and Good Works; when originally it was raise your conscience.

  10. I’ve just read Keith Hopkins’ “A World Full of Gods (Pagans, Jews and Christians in the Roman Empire)”, preceded by JR Porter’s “The Illustrated Guide to the Bible” (we heathens like to be informed). I’m better informed, but not a lot wiser.

    It seems that the mainstream version of Christianity now current is largely the result of human agency, deciding what to leave in, what to leave out, and indeed what to modify, especially in the first few centuries after Christ, but with further changes later. How can anyone take this seriously?

    The main failing in credibility for religion in general (but especially Islam) is that science changes its beliefs in the light of new evidence, but religion denies evidence in order not to have to change its beliefs.

      • Evolution, psychology, sociology (so much for “original sin”); basically the additions to our knowledge of ourselves and the universe we live in, which were unavailable to the founders of religions.

  11. Most people who are raised in a religion tend to “go along to get along” certainly in childhood (usually). At the age of around 13, I and a group of my peers were sent to a confirmation class at the local Presbyterian church (mainline) where my parents were members. At the last session the minister told us what to expect at the ceremony, how to come in and go out, where to stand, etc. At the end he told us what we would be asked in the way of making a commitment, and ended by saying “And the answer better be ‘yes’ or you don’t get to join the church.” My unspoken reaction was “You mean we have a choice?” Of course I knew that other people could and did believe differently, but I was brought up with “we are Presbyterians” as a family identity. That started me wondering how much I really believed and understood for myself and whether I should go through with the confirmation. In the end I decided to do so because I didn’t want my parents and grandparents to get upset, especially as I wasn’t against it, just not all that for it.
    When we had some Colombian missionaries that had been trying to reach muslims in Iraq for a number of years come to our little church here in Colombia to talk about their experiences; I was reminded of the above reaction. (They had had to scram when ISIS took over the area where they were working, and were back in Colombia deciding what to do next.) For years they had had very little in results.
    the people’s reaction was “We’re muslims and if we changed religions we would also have to reorganize our lives completely, financially, family, culturally, socially, etc. we are comfortable as we are, why get into something that could upset all that.” Then ISIS came along, and suddenly they were getting all kinds of inquiries about Christianity. These people recognized that ISIS was Islam, and they were horrified. Suddenly the status quo wasn’t so comfortable any more, and they were open to entertain questions. What I am trying to say is that people often have to be poked in some way to get them thinking. These muslims were comfortably following a religion, which they were shocked to discover wasn’t Islam.

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