Monthly Archives: January 2016

How to summon demons?

Q:I didn’t know Atheists could summon demons. I want me some some succubus action.
A: Demons should be easy, since Christians think any mass-produced spooky trinket can summon Satan, even an Ouija board. The easiest way is probably to throw together your leftover decorations from Halloween and pray to Satan. But if you want to decorate your house in a way that will ward off the missionaries, Christmas carolers, charity seekers, and Ned Flanders, you need to do some shopping to turn your room into this:
gothroom2.png

Continue reading How to summon demons?

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God had a wife named Asherah

There’s a fun milestone beyond admitting God wasn’t the only “real god” when interpreting the bible. It turns out Yahweh from the bible (a.k.a “the God” to Christians) used to have at least one goddess as a wife.

“Asherah” (her name) even appears in the bible (40 times by my count); and is believed to be referenced when the bible mentions the “queen of heaven.” There is even archaeological evidence she and Yahweh were worshiped together in the same temples, to support the scriptures that say the same thing, so it’s not even speculation they were together anymore.

It required checking multiple sources and the bible, but I don’t have to be very skeptical anymore. I’ve nearly confirmed with certainty that:

1) “El” was a proto-god for Yahweh

2) El was definitely married to “Asherah”

3) El gradually merged with several other gods and inherited their properties, becoming the familiar composite god of “Yahweh;” therefore El should still be married to Asherah.
4) The scriptures had to be massively edited and reinterpreted as Jews gradually stopped believing there was more than one real god in the universe.

5) Yahweh was given multiple names of existing gods (Elohim, Jehova, YHWH). Meanwhile other gods had to be reinterpreted as Lucifer, demons or false idols, because they now believed there was only one god. And so, Asherah was turned into an enemy god around 7th century BCE, and then into a false god.

(What I still haven’t figured out are all the details of the mythology, but the gist is solid. Suddenly Yahweh has a love life to make my studying ancient desert religions more interesting if I want to come back from studying Shinto. Apparently El was a father god associated with the sky, while Asherah was an Earth goddess so it’s natural dualism.)

I wonder how many Christians have even heard that God was coupled with Asherah? I know Friedrich Nietzsche talked a bit about Asherah, so just how recent is this theory? How long until most Christians understand god was originally a polytheistic god?  I’m not even sure it is in my best interests to know how big the gap has grown between me and the knowledge of an average person.

(This drawing was copied from an 800 BC pottery fragment in Israel and the inscription when properly translated is a request for a blessing from “Yahweh and his Asherah.”) Yahweh is the dude on the left and Asherah is to the right.

 

Aristotle’s Solipsist Takedown

Christians love to act skeptical of science and say something to the effect of, “Proof is not the entirety of truth. Believing that the world was a sphere (roughly) before it was proven to be so did not make that person wrong or delusional.”

This is a call to ignorance, radical skepticism and complacency. We can behave upon the grounds of what seems likely, and do so daily because that is the only practical way to live. From here the theist straddles the line between the God of the Gaps fallacy, or solipsism. The empty rhetoric these people use really says that we should not tentatively attach more credibility to what seems probable. They’re in effect saying, “No one knows the truth, so I will keep believing in what seems less probable.”

Let’s fix this stupid word game these tricky sophists are playing quickly by demanding they answer one of Aristotle’s question.

“There are no truths. Is this true or false?”

No matter what they say, Aristotle has got them cornered.

Continue reading Aristotle’s Solipsist Takedown

The Santa Clause Delusion

Santa Clause KFC

Does anyone on here see a problem with parents collaborating to deceive children into believing in Santa Clause? There is an argument that Santa Clause encourages kids to be less critical thinkers, and that the story is perpetuated more for the pleasure of parents than the children. Is it better for kids to know their parents gave the presents?

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Claus#Controversy_about_deceiving_children

Continue reading The Santa Clause Delusion

Shinto Absurdities

shinto temple

1. You are Izanami, the Japanese creator goddess. You died giving birth to the fire god, and your husband has come to the underworld to save you. You ask him not to look at you, while you talk to the gods of the underworld, but he accidentally does and sees your flesh has rotted. You want to come back to the land of the living, so how will you react?

A. Keep your cool. Finish talking to the gods of the underworld as you promised, and return to the land of the living with the man who loves you. Create lots of babies and islands, and have stories to tell with gods and humans. Shinto is all true, so there are definitely plenty of magical objects that can improve your looks or health.

B. Chase your husband through the underworld trying to murder him for peeping on you when you were vulnerable. Promise when he escapes to kill a thousand Japanese every day. Force your husband to cover Hades with a rock, permanently sealing you off from the land of the living. Make your husband into a widow and become his arch-enemy, and the enemy of everything you tried to create.

If you choose B, Shinto will make perfect sense to you.

Continue reading Shinto Absurdities

Sacred Mormon Parking Lot -Letter

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_Christ_(Temple_Lot)

Been skimming through the Mormon prophecies and I found a gem:
Mormons believe the New Jerusalem will be built in Independence, Missouri near the corner of this ordinary looking parking lot, (not in Illinois.) it’s also possibly where the Garden of Eden used to be, and only 50 miles from far where Jesus’s 2nd coming will be.
The Mormons tried to build a temple in 1833 to fullfill a prophecy necessary for the end of the world. Unfortunately, they were driven out of Independence and there was a succession crisis, so a Fundamentalist Mormon splinter church (i.e. Protestants to the Catholics) acquired the land. They tried to build a small temple and gave up in the Great Depression
I think the foundations were then converted into a parking lot. The LDS also tried to sue the heritic Mormon church for the property, so they could be the ones to officially build the church, but they lost the case in the US Appellate court. Even without the temple, the parking lot still a sacred pilgrimage site for Mormons though, and the LDS has bought land to build their official memorial some ways off.
P.S.
>

Life in heaven would be as monotonous as hell when you think about it. Endless worship without goals or change.

>Don’t you know you get your own universe my man?

t. Joseph Smith

For real though, that’s not how Christians would think of it. Its just ultimate pleasure being there. That need humans have for…things and experiences just wouldn’t be there because you would be with/around/one with God, so you’d just be happy.

Its magic all right? They don’t gotta explain shit.

What gets me is if you would still need to worship Yahweh or Jesus once you became a god in Mormonism. It would be like a human worshiping another human, or an equal.

What would prevent me from becoming nothing like Yahweh? I could choose not to repeat the Adam and Eve Story on a new world and become a relatively evil God, and my subjects would still be obligated to worship me alone.

>>8398

The theology isn’t clear on that. It says you become “Joint heirs with Christ”, implying that Jesus will be the Father in the next world. So maybe you’ll still have to pay dues, maybe you will be able to do your own thing. There is no mention of “Our God” worshiping his Father God after he became a God, so I would imagine we won’t have to, although you could make the case that our God is a particularly jealous God and wouldn’t let us go that easily. One thing that really gets mainstream Christians, those who know of it, is that in Mormonism God (all Gods) are subject to natural law, so you can’t really defy the laws of physics and shit like that, you can only work within them. So miracles are like you flashing an iphone in a caveman’s face; it looks like magic but it actually isn’t. Supposedly. This is all Orson Pratt trying to make Mormonism a “realistic” religion, scientifically-accurate, for 19th century standards.

Morality, however, is entirely subjective on God, so actually whatever you command your people to do or to endure is “good” and whatever you dislike is “evil”. There is no kind of objective standard for that, just like in mainstream Christendom.

Higurashi song: Flower of Hell

I have translated the full lyrics here for fun, and it explicitly references karma. It’s funny when Christians see Christian themes of salvation in this anime, because they know jack-shit about Buddhist themes. (At the same time the anime deals with breaking out of tradition & superstition, so it feels Atheistic.)

Higurashi no naku koro ni: kai (OP) lyrics:   Continue reading Higurashi song: Flower of Hell

Buddhist Hells: Naraka and Avīci

I love looking for abundant Buddhist themes in this anime.

>抜き出して抜き出して、悲しすぎる運命から。

Slip away, slip away from the fate that is too sad

>あなたは奈落の花じゃない。そんな場所で咲かないで、咲かないで。

You’re not a flower of hell. Don’t bloom there.

Notice the song uses the word naraku for hell. (Or naraka in English.) That’s the category of Buddhist hellish purgatories you hear about the most (ranging from hot hells, to cold hells, to hells where you are tortured in various creative ways). But there there is an even worse hell than naraka that is comparable to Christianity’s, called avici. The kanji seems to suggest it’s a place of unusually long punishment (無間地獄), but there is no indication it is eternal.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Av%C4%ABci

There are 5 ways to go to the especially long and most painful hell called avici. They must be bad to deserve that, so what are they?

1 Intentionally murdering one’s father

2 Intentionally murdering one’s mother

3 Killing an Arhat (enlightened being)

4 Shedding the blood of a Buddha

5 Creating a schism within the Sangha, the community of Buddhist

monks and nuns who try to attain enlightenment(eternal happiness).

So yeah, murdering your parents EVER, poking Buddha accidentally with a stick, or trying to reform corruption in a Buddhist institution lead to quin-trillions of years of damnation. Buddhist karma follows pretty inflexible morality huh?

Btw I love how scientific Buddhist geography is:

>The Buddha told the bhikṣus, “There are 8,000 continents surrounding the four continents [on earth]. There is, moreover, a great sea surrounding those 8,000 continents. There is, moreover, a great diamond mountain range encircling that great sea. Beyond this great diamond mountain range is yet another great diamond mountain range. And between the two mountain ranges lies darkness. The sun and moon in the divine sky with their great power are unable to reach that [darkness] with their light. In [that space between the two diamond mountain ranges] there are eight major hells. Along with each major hell are sixteen smaller hells.

Too bad this isn’t true. The Earth would be huge with tons of continents, and we could mine diamonds from those diamond mountains, and put geothermal power plants in hell. I guess you could even visit your relatives in in hell if you crossed enough land.

See also:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jambudvipa

And we wouldn’t need a space elevator with a mountain this high. We could just build a railroad to carry astronauts into space.

Why Progressive Taxation can help company morale

It’s time for me to share a counter-intuitive truth regarding progressive taxation. It makes sense to the French, but it will surprise libertarians/neo-conservatives. I figured it out in my junior year at the university when I took finance, and was looking over tax rates and accounting. It’s been an issue that’s been close to my heart for a long time…

Problem: How do we solve income inequality without significantly impairing productivity?

Solution: When you raise taxes for the upper class,  they are more likely to reinvest it in their employees because higher tax brackets would mean they would lose the new amount to taxation anyway. (By taxes, I mean capital gains, personal income, or inheritance taxes.)

how taxation works

Explanation: There are all kinds of deductions for sole proprietorships and corporations. You can have a deduction for a company car, or office equipment. You can list entertainment as an expense. Both reduce your tax burden regardless of the tax rate.

The only time money comes in is 1) when your company pays a dividend 2) when you give yourself a salary 3) when you sell stocks.

Premise: Progressive taxes lowers the marginal utility of having exploitation for the upper class. It becomes more useful to become a “great man” and offer alms to your employee, and boost your ego in that way. Currently, materialism encourages people to enrich themselves and conspicuously display their wealth to boost one’s ego.

Caveat – if you’re working for an asshole, he might still exploit his employees to the max, even if it put him in a higher tax bracket. But he would receive less benefit, than if he put the money into improving his working environment.

Caveat 2 – An asshole might use the deductions mainly to his own benefit, i.e. improving his office over the employees.

But at least 1) the record makes it more transparent 2) the board of directors can investigate to the extent they control the company 3) abuse can open the company up to tax fraud, or government intervention

 

Premise 2: Empowering lower level employees is useful. Reducing income inequality makes more people work harder. Shifting the company culture to make people work toward a unified goal rather than simply enriching themselves is usually possible. Such a shift works better than giving your “stars” whatever they ask for, and trusting the pareto principle.

Premise 3: Company cultures are moldable, and people can be motivated by loyalty rather than simply power/money/status they can lord over other coworkers or at home. A degree of cooperation and sharing is possible without full communism.