Free hugs?

Everything has a price:
A bowl of cereal at Cereality, $3.99
Burrito at Taco Bell, $.89
Place to live, $400/monthly.

A hug, $0.

Yes. It is true. I happened to be wandering aimlessly around campus today when I spotted a certain individual holding a sign.

Upon closer inspection, I could read the sign.


I took the gentleman up on his offer and wished him well with the rest of his day. This made my day.

But for some strange reason a vast majority of everyone else in the area did not purchase a free hug. There were plenty of empty Starbucks Coffee containers strewn about so I could tell people had money to spend but nobody wanted to pay the ultimate price of actually interacting with a complete stranger.

I should hope that if ever you see a "FREE HUG" notice you take that offer because there may come a day when a "FREE HUG" is just a memory.

god is Not Great: This book rocks!

I'm almost done reading this great book by Christopher Hitchens. The only thing keeping me from finishing it is, having to read stuff for my classes. You can guaran-damn-tee that Hitchens puts forth a tremendous argument against religion. He is able to point out the many fallacies within religion and so forth.

Pick it up at your local bookstore or check it out at your library.

god is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. Christopher Hitchens. 2007



What would Jesus do?
Would he eat pork that grew up in a confined animal feeding operation that was fed a diet of mostly corn, corn byproduct, miscellaneous animal bits, and antibiotics?

No. Jesus was allegedly Jewish and Jewish people are forbidden from eating pork because god said so.

But what would you do?

Would you eat pork from a pig that has never had the chance to do what pigs do? Pigs, by nature, forage for leaves, grasses, roots, fruits, and flowers. Pigs are also mighty tasty, so for those of you that have never consumed pork, I encourage you to find some pork that comes from a pig that was able to do what it is that pigs do.

*Chipotle offers pork from allegedly free range pigs.

Visit EatWild.com for more info.
Also visit Polyface farms for even more info.

My evening at a Catholic mass

It was nearly 3 years since I had stepped foot in a church, but I managed to go twice in one day. My morning, as was previously told, was spent at a Seventh Day Adventist church. My evening, was spent at a Catholic mass. My afternoon was spent trying to wrap my head around all the fables I just heard that morning.

Riding a giraffe? Seriously.

To be perfectly honest with you I don't really have anything to say about the Catholic mass. I used to believe in all that nonsense but now I don't. It was just like any other Catholic mass anywhere else. There was singing, reading of the Bible, and an attempt to interpret those readings to promote the goals of the church.

I have my own problems with the church but many of these are based on unverified rumors.
One, although the church encourages living a life of poverty, as Jesus and many other prophets allegedly did, the church is credited with having a vast fortune.
Two, the church has committed several crimes against humanity. Namely, its suppression against science which resulted in a stagnant period of perhaps 400 years. Also, its ethnographic approach to indigenous peoples and its utter disregard for cultural independence.
And third, its views on women. Mainly that women are the cause of humanities downfall and existence in sin because Eve gave Adam a cursed apple.

I don't like religious organizations because I see them as hypocritical and I especially don't like the Catholic church.


My Day With Religion

I decided to attend some Christian services. One of which was held at a local Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) Church, the other was held at a Roman Catholic Church.

First thing is to briefly summarize some key points of the SDA religion. It is a Protestant Christian denomination most often distinguished by its practice of observing the sabbath on a Saturday, instead of on a Sunday like most other Christian denominations.

Formally established in 1863 it formed out of the Millerite movement in the United States following the teachings of Ellen G. White. It is similar to most other Christian denominations with regard to the belief in the divinity of Jesus Christ, the trinity, and the infallibility of the Bible as the word of god.

Aside from its Saturday observance, it is distinguished by a belief in the unconscious state of the dead, a doctrine of investigative judgment, an emphasis on diet and health, culturally conservative principles, and its promotion of religious liberty.

The Roman Catholic Church is the first Christian church and traces its own origins to the community of Jesus Christ and his Apostles, more specifically Peter.

Like other Christian faiths this organization is similar in its belief in the holy trinity, the divinity of Jesus Christ, belief in one omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent and omnipresent god, salvation through the teachings of Jesus, and an emphasis of love and charity to others.

It is different from other Christian Protestant faiths in some other insignificant differences that aren't worth reviewing now.

Now, back to my experience. First the SDA service, it started out just like any other religious service. Various individuals, whom I assume to be people of power or influence within the organization, made a point to welcome me. I also assume this will be so that I am encouraged to attend again. There was singing, a march of children that disseminated into the congregation and requested money so that they could continue to run their youth program, there was a quotation taken from the Bible, there was a sermon, and there was another collection of tithe.

All in all, it seemed like any other Christian church but to be fair, I have not attended a religious service in quite some time so I could be mistaken in that regard.

What I found unfortunate was the sermon. The pastor preached about "God's Amazing Zoo". He (of course it would be a man at the head of the church) explained that god was so amazing because he had created, through intelligent design, a vast array of creatures that were to be cared for.

He explained how before, that infernal woman Eve condemned us all to lives of sorrow, the people lived alongside the animals. He spoke of how Adam and Eve could ride atop the backs of lions, bison, bears, and even giraffes. He even explained that there was no such thing as predation among god's creatures. I shudder to think how many young impressionable minds believed what he was saying.

After this service the organization hosted a lunch, which I understand happens after every service. People ate and talked. The pastor even came to my table and commented on how great it was for him to see the church's future leadership sitting together. I hadn't thought of it at the time but that may have been a joke because currently women may not take the position of an ordained minister, and I was sitting with women.

I'll write about my Roman Catholic experience next time.


Show some Compassion

Oh no, religion rears its ugly head yet again. This time it is concerning philanthropy.

Is religious involvement necessary to perform charitable works? No.

If religions is a pre-requisite for anything it is destruction but back to the discussion. Compassion International and their Christian Child Sponsorship program. It is a ministry that attempts to "release children from their spiritual, physical, economic, and social poverty" and to enable them to become "responsible, fulfilled Christian adults."

This organization unfortunately reaches 800,000 young and impressionable minds in 24 different poverty stricken countries.

Some of their commitments are to honor Jesus Christ, work with the local missionaries, impact each child's growth and development, teach the children about the gospel, and instill a relationship with god in each child.

For only $32 a month you have the opportunity to participate in the destruction of an indigenous culture and throw your money into a money consuming machine. For fiscal year 2005-2006 Compassion International had $246 million in expenses. By converting the non believers into the crime that is Christianity these unfortunate children may know the joy of a poisonous religion. They will finally have the opportunity to be rid of their primitive beliefs, once and for all. That $32 also buys you a travel agent, just in case you ever want to actually visit your "sponsored" child.

What disgusts me the most is how their AIDS initiative works: Prevention. Ignorant prevention.

These power mongers criminalize sexual freedom and create a sense of wrongdoing for doing what comes natural. Instead of promoting safer sexual practices they promote ridiculous faith based abstinence in the hopes that it'll stop the infections. They have no doubt done a great harm to these people by "teaching" them how condoms are ineffective at preventing HIV infection.

I implore you to stay away from faith based charities. There are plenty of other ways to help another human being without contributing to the lie that is Christianity, or any other religion for that matter.