Saturday, August 25, 2012

My Strange Frequencies Appearance and David Fitzgerald speaks about Jesus mythicism | Strange Frequencies Radio

Episode 204 – David Fitzgerald speaks about Jesus mythicism | Strange Frequencies Radio
David Fitzgerald, author of “Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed at All,” joined us today to talk about Jesus mythicism. If Jesus was so important and performed so many miracles during his lifetime, why was nothing written about him by those who knew him? Could it be that Jesus was just a myth?

Also, reminder that I'll be the guest on Strange Frequencies this Sunday. 1:00 pm PST.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

BBC News - Mexico row as religious sect blocks schooling access

BBC News - Mexico row as religious sect blocks schooling access
The religious sect was founded in 1973 by a defrocked priest, who objected to changes in the Catholic Church, including the end of masses in Latin.

They believe their compound will be the only place on Earth spared from an impending apocalypse.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Oklahoma youngster forced to turn his Michigan shirt inside out at school | Dr. Saturday - Yahoo! Sports

This doesn't have anything to do with religion, but after reading it, I was once again struck by the pure fanatical nature of humans when it comes to beliefs. And while in this case, the belief isn't in a deity, but the actions of this school comes close. Not god or gods, but sports. It also involves a 5 year old (!) and, astoundingly, a fucking school. Turns out some schools have managed to get away with legally including in their dress codes prohibitions against other teams. Truly boggles the mind doesn't it? Oklahoma youngster forced to turn his Michigan shirt inside out at school | Dr. Saturday - Yahoo! Sports

Girl, 11, Could Face Death in Pakistan for 'Blasphemy' - Yahoo! News

Ah, no matter what the religion, humans care more about text in a book than human life:Girl, 11, Could Face Death in Pakistan for 'Blasphemy' - Yahoo! News

Saturday, August 18, 2012

EBay bans sale of spells and hexes

Now this is interesting! Ebay has banned sales of spells, the ban starts in September. This ban includes "prayers" as well. EBay bans sale of spells and hexes - Aug. 16, 2012 The ban includes tarot, psychic and related readings. Magic, it seems, is not afoot on eBay.

Ukranian performer cuts down cross in supporting Pussy Riot

 Ukranian Inna Shevchenko of Femen destroys wooden cross with a chainsaw in protest of Pussy Riot on trial:

Friday, August 17, 2012

Russian, Once an "atheist" country...

Remember when, all you fellow baby boomers, during the cold war/ duck and cover/ 1950s pinko commie era, when we were warned about those godless, heathen, atheist Russian commies?

Russia, the big bad evil empire and the worst thing about Russia, the very worst, we were told, was its atheism.

Today's news has brought us two stories that contradict any atheistic beliefs. Three women: Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich,  sentenced to a two year prison sentence for offending the Church, and a 100 year ban on pro-gay parades, speech, etc.

Of course, Pussy Riot's protest on the church steps pissed off Putin and that's why they were sentenced. Church followers are just thrown into the mix for added support for the Putin cause. It isn't really about religion; it's about politics. It's about control.

The anti-gay edict: totalitarian governments, not promoting religion, well again, it's about control. I wonder if (while trying not to be cliche)  an already fringe group, often a majority of thinkers and creative individuals are considered a danger to the powers that be. No one wants that. Religion has nothing to do with it; it's about control. Maintaining power. Maintaining control.

Women Of Esoterica: BBC News - Pussy Riot members jailed for two years for hooliganism

BBC News - Pussy Riot members jailed for two years for hooliganism: Disturbing and disappointing news. Three members of Pussy Riot --- Maria Alyokhina, 24, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich, --- have been sentenced to two years in prison for their performance.BBC News - Pussy Riot members jailed for two years for hooliganism

The headline reads "...jailed for ... hooliganism" but the judge added that their "hooliganism" "crudely undermined social order."

Scary that anyone can be jailed for political protest that conflicts with the rule of the land. Equally frightening is the fact that one can be jailed for "offending" religions. In Pussy Riot's case, their protest was seen as "hooliganism" but not just; as the judge said, "...the act had been one of blasphemy, not politics."

The women have international supporters, including musicians like Madonna and Paul McCartney. But there are plenty of religious fanatics who think justice has been served:

One, Igor Kim, told the BBC News website from Moscow: "Shouting and screaming and spreading hate in Church is unacceptable and is contrary with Christian ethics."

Hardly need to point out the obvious that sending people to prison for three years for expressing their opinions is not "Christian ethics."

Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Madonna and the Whore, and, Evading Pussy

I found this AP item interesting for what it couldn't bring itself to say: pussy. Associated Press | The Register-Guard | Eugene, Oregon Not at first anyway,

Madonna, as in pop culture icon, and whore, as in, that's what Madonna is. Those words can be uttered. But pussy, that might be offensive!

The item is about a tweet from a "Russian deputy premier" that condemned Madonna (the performer, not the Madonna) for supporting, as the AP release put it "...the jailed members of a Russian punk band..."
That "Russian punk band" is called PUSSY RIOT. Say it. PUSSY. As in: vagina. Twat. And so on.

The parallels to the Madonna and the whore iconography are obvious. A woman -- Madonna -- takes on the persona of the Madonna/whore mythic cliche. And she dares to support other whores, who themselves dared perform -- in your face, bourgeois! -- anti-Madonna sentiments. Actually, Pussy Riot prayed to Mary: ""Virgin Mary, drive Putin away!" they evoked. Further insult to the Madonna, these "whores" take back names and labels and own it. Pussy Riot.

Parked in the seventh paragraph, the name of the group: Pussy Riot, is written. Pussy Riot appears again in the ninth paragraph. 7 and 9, two powerful numbers in esoteric tradition, not to mention three, the number of members on trial. The three members of Pussy Riot have been in jail for five months and are accused of acts that amount to religious hate crimes. The women face up to three years in prison.

Madonna -- the musician, not the BVM -- is once again about symbols. (Remember her recent swastika provocation in France.) From the AP item:
Madonna, who performed in Moscow and St. Petersburg as part of her world tour, expressed her support for Pussy Riot at Tuesday's concert in Moscow, saying she'd "pray for them." She then turned her bare back, with "Pussy Riot" written on it and donned a ski mask similar to those worn by the band.

Pussy Riot has international support, including of course from fellow musicians. Here's just one link I found while surfing.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Update on Pussy Riot Trial: Russia prosecutors seek three years' jail

BBC News - Pussy Riot: Russia prosecutors seek three years' jail Pussy Riot, three women performance artists, are on trial for insulting the church. For their "crime" church leaders are demanding the young women be imprisoned:
Feelings about the case within Russian society, where the Orthodox Church has enjoyed a revival since the collapse of the atheistic USSR, have been mixed.
'Abuse of God'

"The actions of the accomplices clearly show religious hatred and enmity," state prosecutor Alexei Nikiforov said in closing arguments.

The head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, has said the act amounted to blasphemy.

"Using swear words in a church is an abuse of God."

He said the women had "set themselves up against the Orthodox Christian world".

Given the "severity" of the crime, he argued, the "requisite punishment must be a real deprivation of freedom".

UFO Digest: Vatican Official Declares Extraterrestrial Contact Is Real

Wasn't I just posting about this awhile back? :)Vatican Official Declares Extraterrestrial Contact Is Real

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Pussy Riot's cathedral performance

Brief clip of Pussy Riot's performance. See post below for more. BBC News - Pussy Riot's cathedral performance

BBC News - Pussy Riot trial: Putin urges leniency for Russia punks

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Mariya Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich have been in jail since February, when they were arrested after storming the pulpit of the Christ the Saviour Cathedral in Moscow.
 The punk trio danced in the Orthodox church while wearing garish colours and masks, chanting "Mother Mary, drive Putin away".
BBC News - Pussy Riot trial: Putin urges leniency for Russia punks

They're on trial. They're facing 7 years in prison for pissing off the Orthodox Church.

Lucha Libre Patron Saint, Folk Art

In Mexico, lucha libre -- the masked wrestlers -- recently had a celebration to honor their patron saint of their profession. That patron saint is the Virgin of Guadalupe, or Our Lady of Guadalupe. BBC News - Lucha libre wrestlers pay homage to their patron saint

Lucas Lorenzo, artist. From Sacred Art Pilgrim.
I found the Sacred Art Pilgrim site on Mexican folk art. Artist Lucas Lorenzo, along with family members, are "panel painters" -- painting on Masonite. (When I started painting decades ago I couldn't afford canvas but did have access to a lot of Masonite, which I used for painting surfaces. Both sides: the rough or back side had a texture that was oddly interesting to paint on.)

I wrote about Lucha Libre -- a topic I am curious about but really know very little of -- some time back for Tim Binnall's site. Seeing the Virgin; Tricksters Take it to the People, and Fun with Lucha Libre's Esoteric Side.