Sydney World Youth Day: Corpse-worshipping cultists gathering to worship a corpse

25 04 2008

Frassati: role model and (as you can see) something of a hornbag to millions of young Catholics*

An exhumed corpse, about 80 years overdone, will be one of the star attractions at the Catholic World Youth Day to be held in Sydney this July:

Pier Giorgio Frassati will play an important role in the huge Catholic festival despite being dead for more than 80 years, Fairfax Media reports.

Mr Frassati was only 24 when he died from polio, but he has become a role model for young Catholics because of his fervent faith, teamed with good looks, a robust physique and sunny nature.

The worm’s-meat-formerly-known-as-Frassati is being flown in at the request of one Cardinal George Pell, and the word around the votive is that if the Catholic youth festival goes off without a hitch, Pell could win himself a senior position in the Vatican.

(*No, of course that’s not the real corspe!!)

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57 responses

25 04 2008
Matt

His casket just needs a sign added to it.

“Will bless sinner for brains.”

26 04 2008
ozatheist

what is it with catholics and wanting to look at dead bodies? it’s a bit macabre.

I read yesterday that they exhumed the body of Padre Pio (who claimed to suffer from stigmata) recently and have now put him on display!

from the article:

Catholic tradition holds that saints’ bodies can be exhumed to check their state of preservation and venerate them as relics.

who the heck thought that was a good idea? I can see the original conversation:

Pope: “hey dudes, why don’t we dig up dead guys so we can look at their decayed bodies?”
Bishops: “good idea, one of your best”
Bishops (after Pope has left the room): WTF?

27 04 2008
The Lazy Aussie

So when they said incredibly well preserved, they meant looked like he’s had been dead for only 75 years.

28 04 2008
joe2

“Pell could win himself a senior position in the Vatican.”

Please Lord, let this thingy go off big time.
Rome deserves George.
He is far too wise to be anywhere else than head office.

And his dress sense is always impeccable.
http://faithfulrebel.blogspot.com/2007/11/cardinal-pell-of-australia-to-celebrate.html

27 05 2008
Powerage « The Worst of Perth

[…] Youth Day shirts now are now available in Target according to Cimbali. They’re not content to drag a corpse to Australia, (although having watched Border Security, I’m not sure that the deadun won’t be […]

14 06 2008
Mary

Actually, Catholics do not adore saints or mary. They venerate them because of the way they liveda holy life, overcome the world and followed Christ successfully. They can be powerful intercessor to GOd. Just as we ask a friend whom we know to pray for us, they (saints and Blessed Virgin) are already in heaven very close to GOD. They had given up their worldly desire as sacrifice so they can do the will of GOd and follow HIM. So now, when they interceed for someone, when they ask GOD something, they can easily moved the heart of Our LORD, who will never refused a heart who never said no to HIM during their earthly life….Pier Giorgio Frassati is still up for sainthood and not yet declared a saint. Although he would probably soon will be. Many saints if not all, have incorrupt bodies, including Pier Giorgio Frassati. His body would be so different from your photos becuase it was perfectly intact. Although no photos yet because he isnt a saint yet…… It is worth mentioning that the person who saw the mother of GOD in Lourdes (st. Bernadette) was perfectly intact. Of course others may think they tried to preserve the body. But usually, they dig up the body that way after decades or centuries.Athough how intact a body is also vary. Also, The other saint (st. Catherine Laboure) also saw the miraculous medal ( another title of Blessed Virgin Mary) is also incorrupt. But st. bernadette , perhaps because she saw the immaculate conception ( which is a state of being of the virgin mary, which means the mother of jesus was concieved without original sin) the grace given to Mary also goes through her being. Remember that the original sin is what causes death and decay. So St. bernadette is now incorrupt. Oh, Blessed Jacinta is also incorrupt, she was the one who had the vision of our lady of fatima… This is the link for incorrupt saints….http://www.overcomeproblems.com/incorruptables.htm

14 06 2008
arthurvandelay

They can be powerful intercessor to GOd. Just as we ask a friend whom we know to pray for us, they (saints and Blessed Virgin) are already in heaven very close to GOD.

How do you know? (And why have you put the word “God” in allcaps?)

Many saints if not all, have incorrupt bodies, including Pier Giorgio Frassati.

What evidence do you have to back up the claim that the bodies of those declared “saints” by the Vatican aren’t subject to decomposition like other dead bodies? Given that canonisation doesn’t generally take place until some time after the body is dead and buried, does the body of the saint remain exactly as it was at the moment of burial, or does it decompose and skeletonise until the precise moment sainthood is bestowed?

Furthermore, if there is such a high correlation between bodily incorruptibility and sainthood, why does the Church bother to go through the whole “Devil’s Advocate” process? Surely it would be much easier to just dig up the body, and if it’s still as fresh as the day it was interred, the question is settled, no?

The Winter 1995 edition of The Skeptic has an article on “incorruptibility,” and discusses the case of St. Bernadette. Also, the high correlation between “incorruptibility” and Catholic/Orthodox sainthood seems to be an instance of selection bias, given that nobody has endeavoured to dig up all buried bodies at regular intervals to determine whether the phenomenon is more widespread.

And of course, if there are instances of this phenomenon which hitherto remain unexplained, all that means is that they are currently unexplained. The default explanation is not “God did it.” (See the Appeal to Ignorance fallacy.) If you want to claim that “God did it,” the onus is upon you to provide positive empirical evidence in support of that claim. Otherwise, nobody is under any obligation to accept it.

16 06 2008
James

“If you want to claim that “God did it,” the onus is upon you to provide positive empirical evidence in support of that claim. Otherwise, nobody is under any obligation to accept it.”

Well said.

“Many saints if not all, have incorrupt bodies, including Pier Giorgio Frassati.”

Some knowledge on the decomposition of a body and the variables that affect it would go a long way to helping you understand why!

16 06 2008
James

Also Mary, I couldn’t help bvut ring the proverbial Heracy bell the whole way through your comment. Read the Bible, it is God’s word. He said he would never add to it. So why do you?

23 06 2008
Clare

The trouble with Mary’s thesis is that she believes implicitly what the church tells her. And as a “support” for these wild claims, she believes photos. Yet all thinking beings know that photos can be doctored, and that wax (or other substances) images can be made of bodies. The necessary pre-requisites to sainthood certainly allow enough time for such a model to be made in each case. Moreover, if a prospective saint’s body is dug up and found to be incorrupt, why not photograph it then and show it around? Why wait till sainthood is implemented? Surely having witnesses on hand at the moment of disinterment would be a) easy, and b) more open and above board. If it’s so true, there’s no need for secrecy.

No, as I said, she believes implicitly (and I might add, unthinkingly) what the church tells her: “we dug up these bodies and they were incorrupt”. Where’s the proof? Where are the independent (non-Catholic, that is) witnesses? And why on earth do you take the church on trust anyway? They also told us that there was no problem with clergy sexual abuse, despite knowing full well it was a massive problem. And if you don’t believe that (because I’m not “the church”, after all, so I don’t get instant belief no matter how wild the claim), check out http://www.boston.com/globe/spotlight/abuse – the Boston Globe’s record of 11,000+ pages of internal church documentation demonstrating clear and deliberate intent to hide the problem. And then read Jason Berry’s “Lead Us Not Into Temptation”. And *then* come back and see if you can still say the official church line is unquestioningly believable!

23 06 2008
AV

To be fair, it does not necessarily follow, from the fact that the Vatican has endeavoured to sweep abuse within the Church under the carpet, that its reluctance to allow independent scientific scrutiny of the so-called “incorruptibles” means that it is telling lies about the latter phenomena. Both, however, arguably point to an arrogant authoritarianism on the part of the Catholic Church that is possibly a holdover of the old pre-modern “Great Ladder of Being” concept, where the Church used to occupy a higher rung than secular authorities as a medium between the temporal world and the world of God.

24 06 2008
Mark

Actually I went on a Pilgrimage to France and the Bodies of St. Bernadett and St. Catherine Laboure and many other saints are incorruptables.

I saw it for myself.

24 06 2008
Mark

Well a lot of Anti-Catholics here on this site.

Sorry for the Abuse by Catholic Priests but about the SExual abuse occuring outside of the Church in wider society.

In fact my nephew Justin was molested by a married teacher and committed suicide when he was just 16 years old.

Living and working in France I had the opportunity to study and wonder about the lives of the saints.

Its too bad that everyone here will answer to God someday including the Atheists.

24 06 2008
Bruce

I saw it for myself.

From your comment on the other thread, “This website verifies the stuff [that Father Williams says] Atheists say and believe.“, it is clear you have a massive confirmation bias (and outgroup homogeneity bias to boot). Sorry, but I wouldn’t believe it even if any old stranger just came up and told me, especially one who demonstrates that through his cognitive biases, is capable of seeing things that aren’t there.

The fact that you (someone who clearly bends over backwards to believe what he is told by orthodoxy) can gain access to the body for a closer look while scientists can’t, and that this selective access is managed by those with an interest in maintaining the story, makes the whole thing very unconvincing.

I might add, that there are a number of Catholics who view a lot of the more woo-ish things that Catholics can engage in, not as a genuine spiritual experience, but as a symptom of pastoral neglect by clergy. By inference, if you allege anti-Catholicism for criticism of corpse veneration, you also necessarily state that the corpse venerating Catholics are somehow more Catholic than other Catholics. What gives you such authority?

Still, I’m not overly interested. That’s why I haven’t commented on this particular thread yet. If some Catholics want to go venerate some cadavers, then so be it. Not really my business and I’ve seen weirder things anyway.

What does bug me though is your rather broad attributions of anti-Catholicism and your outgroup homogeneity bias against Atheists, evidenced by your (very) hasty induction from a (rather unfair and utterly unsubstantiated) interpretation of people’s character on here.

24 06 2008
arthurvandelay

Well a lot of Anti-Catholics here on this site.

What evidence do you have to support this claim? Do you consider any criticism of what certain elements within Catholicism do or have done as “Anti-Catholic?”

Sorry for the Abuse by Catholic Priests but about the SExual abuse occuring outside of the Church in wider society.

In fact my nephew Justin was molested by a married teacher and committed suicide when he was just 16 years old.

I’m sorry to hear about your nephew, but the issue of sexual abuse is irrelevant to the topic of this post.

BTW, I have removed the hyperlinks to the catholic apologetics site that accompany your comments, for two reasons. (1) I’m not interested in facilitating spam on my blog. I may revisit the site on a future occasion to answer some of its ridiculous claims, but I’ll be doing so on my own terms, thanks. (2) Your coming to my blog and telling lies about atheists and about the commenters here reflects poorly on the apologetics site we have just been discussing. By severing the connection between your comments and that site, it doesn’t look any more ridiculous than it already is, and you don’t come across as any more of hypocrite than you already do. So I’m doing the both of you a favour.

26 06 2008
Oz Atheist

on the Catholic churches documents showing they were hiding a problem and that it doesn’t prove anything in particular.

It is similar to the crimen solicitationis document which, whilst not directly preventing a victim taking legal action, highlights the overall culture of secrecy within the church

28 06 2008
eat hot death

Mary regurgitated:

“Actually, Catholics do not adore saints or mary. They venerate them because of the way they liveda holy life, overcome the world and followed Christ successfully.”

The most successful way for anyone to follow christ is to keep the fucker RIGHT out in front of you where you can keep a good eye on him. Wouldn’t want to get accidentally cornholed by the son o’ god, would ya?

28 06 2008
Bruce

Charming, EHD…

5 07 2008
Michael

seems to me some of these remarks mock an ancient religious practice which might still give comfort and meaning to people’s lives today. Veneration of bodily remains of significant people is not limited to Catholicism but can be found amongst the Orthodox Christian and non-Christian faith traditions as well. Just because YOU don’t “get it” doesn’t mean it’s invalid, or silly, or foolish. Your inability to respect the religious practices of other people might reveal some of your irrational prejudices. My Mormon neighbours go attend sessions in the local temple twice a week; my Moslem co-worker recently made the customary pilgrimage to Mecca. I don’t share their beliefs about these activities but if I ridiculed their sincerity, it would just mean I would be a jerk. The Mormons’ temple attendance & the Moslems’ pilgrimage means a lot to THEM and doesn’t hurt me one bit. Heck – maybe I can actually learn something from them and become a more tolerant, humane person in the process.

5 07 2008
AV

Sorry, Michael, but I find corpse-worshipping both hilarious and ridiculous, and as a consequence I’m going to mock and laugh at it. That you personally don’t find it funny or silly is of little consequence: all it means is that we differ on what we find amusing or worthy of mockery.

But amidst all your pious moralising, finger-waving and sermonising, I didn’t find one argument justifying the claim that ridiculous and humourous phenomena should not be mocked if they occur in a religious context, if the religion is “ancient” enough and if a sufficient number of people find that worshipping a corpse gives “comfort and meaning” to their lives. You haven’t said anything in defence of this claim at all. All you’ve done is brag to the world about what a good and tolerant little boy you are for not finding ridiculous what myself and other contributors to this thread have found ridiculous. Well, here’s a chocolate chip cookie and a pat on the head, but I really couldn’t care less.

5 07 2008
Michael

hey, AV: for somebody “who couldn’t care less” you sure have gone to a lot of trouble to respond to my remarks; I’m flattered you’d give them any attention at all. Please re-read what I actually said: I said I might BECOME more tolerant and humane, I didn’t say I already AM. In fact, since I live with myself day and night, I think I need to improve as a person, and part of the process of my self-improvement might include toning down my proclivities toward intolerance and mockery of that which other people consider sacred and meaningful. I don’t think such people need to justify or defend their beliefs/practices nor do I think I have to defend or justify mine. I do, however, think their gratuitous critics maybe ought to examine their need to mock and ridicule. Possibly all this spite, hatefulness, bitterness, and insensitivity to the feelings of other people does is make the world a little bit darker,more hostile and cold. Aren’t things already ugly enough?

5 07 2008
AV

hey, AV: for somebody “who couldn’t care less” you sure have gone to a lot of trouble to respond to my remarks

Please re-read what I actually said. I said I couldn’t care less about the fact that we differ on what we find humorous or ridiculous. (And the bald fact that we do differ on these things is all that could be garnered from your initial comment.) Now, given that we all find something ridiculous (even you, Michael–you have cracked a smile in recent memory, haven’t you?), what I want to know from you is why I’m not allowed to draw attention to ridiculous phenomena when it is associated with religion, because its “religious,” because its ancient, because it “gives comfort and meaning to people’s lives.” You haven’t justified this position at all.

I don’t think such people need to justify or defend their beliefs/practices

Ummm, they certainly do, when such practices form part of an event, such as WYD, that is not only taxpayer-funded but shielded from criticism–and yes, even ridicule–by draconian police powers. Mockery and ridicule is in this case a healthier alternative to the anger and outrage that ought to attend this travesty of liberal democracy.

I think I need to improve as a person, and part of the process of my self-improvement might include toning down my proclivities toward intolerance and mockery of that which other people consider sacred and meaningful.

And I think part of the process of your self-improvement ought also to include toning down the sanctimonious rhetoric, and lightening up. And dispense with the strawmen, while you’re at it: I don’t recall saying anything in this post about Mormons attending their temples or Muslims going to Mecca. If you do so, you might find the world a little less dark, hostile and cold.

11 07 2008
Bear

Mark.

Thankfully the beliefs and sensibilities of Atheists mean that we won’t have to answer to god when we die, that’s the whole point. Comments like “Its too bad that everyone here will answer to God someday including the Atheists.” are part of the reason this anti-catholic vitriol exists. You sound like you’re being extremely condescending to anyone who chooses not to believe in the great bearded black woman in the sky. If you want to appear knowledgeable and make demeaning comments you might get more respect if you show up armed with a fact or two. One would probably suffice though. Perhaps something scientific, though I know this is where the flaws in your arguments generally show up.

The ill-feeling runs far deeper than the abhorrent issue of sexual molestation by people who have devoted themselves to this god fellow. It’s a frustration that just because you believe in whatever stories you choose to believe, there should be no reason for it to permeate into my life or the lives of any of us who don’t believe.

Personally I think the world would be much better off if everybody was afforded the freedom to believe whatever they like but perhaps that said belief was something that stayed within one’s own home. I won’t preach the gospel of Clive Barker to the world if the world promises not to preach it’s own silly little beliefs to me.

Better still if we could free ourselves from the shackles of ancient beliefs completely…
…and we might be able to sail around the world without falling off the edge too!

22 07 2008
Jan

The interesting thing is that because Protestants claim to believe only in the Bible – it’s just as well the Protestant religion didn’t come into being until a few centuries ago because if they had been around in the first centuries of the Church (yes, I imagine decrying the Catholic Church even then) they wouldn’t have had a bible to bash because it wasn’t in existence. The Faith was at that time handed down by tradition, which is something that Protestants don’t believe in. What would you have done during those centuries without a Bible?

22 07 2008
Jan

And here’s something for you: Christ created only one Church. He built the Church upon Peter, the first Pope. He said, “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church and I give to thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”. The seat of the Church was established in Rome. Latin became the official languge of the Church because it was established in Rome and that was the language of the Romans and the desire was to convert them to Christianity. The first schism came when the church in Constantinople wanted to have the seat of the Church there, and so we got the Greek Orthodox Church. Many centuries later the Protestant religion came into being through Martin Luther, a Roman Catholic priest – so protestantism was not founded by Christ but an ex Catholic priest who’s life was far from sinless. The Holy Roman Apostolic Church is the only church founded by Christ, the sinless only Son of God – every other church on earth can only point to an ordinary mortal founder who is self-appointed. So, if you desire the fullness of the truth, find out about the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church.

22 07 2008
Jan

Bear, go ahead and prove that God doesn’t exist! You know you can’t – there is more to prove that He does exist than He doesn’t.

Article 3. Whether God exists?

Objection 1. It seems that God does not exist; because if one of two contraries be infinite, the other would be altogether destroyed. But the word “God” means that He is infinite goodness. If, therefore, God existed, there would be no evil discoverable; but there is evil in the world. Therefore God does not exist.

Objection 2. Further, it is superfluous to suppose that what can be accounted for by a few principles has been produced by many. But it seems that everything we see in the world can be accounted for by other principles, supposing God did not exist. For all natural things can be reduced to one principle which is nature; and all voluntary things can be reduced to one principle which is human reason, or will. Therefore there is no need to suppose God’s existence.

On the contrary, It is said in the person of God: “I am Who am.” (Exodus 3:14)

I answer that, The existence of God can be proved in five ways.

The first and more manifest way is the argument from motion. It is certain, and evident to our senses, that in the world some things are in motion. Now whatever is in motion is put in motion by another, for nothing can be in motion except it is in potentiality to that towards which it is in motion; whereas a thing moves inasmuch as it is in act. For motion is nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality. But nothing can be reduced from potentiality to actuality, except by something in a state of actuality. Thus that which is actually hot, as fire, makes wood, which is potentially hot, to be actually hot, and thereby moves and changes it. Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot simultaneously be potentially hot; but it is simultaneously potentially cold. It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e. that it should move itself. Therefore, whatever is in motion must be put in motion by another. If that by which it is put in motion be itself put in motion, then this also must needs be put in motion by another, and that by another again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and, consequently, no other mover; seeing that subsequent movers move only inasmuch as they are put in motion by the first mover; as the staff moves only because it is put in motion by the hand. Therefore it is necessary to arrive at a first mover, put in motion by no other; and this everyone understands to be God.

The second way is from the nature of the efficient cause. In the world of sense we find there is an order of efficient causes. There is no case known (neither is it, indeed, possible) in which a thing is found to be the efficient cause of itself; for so it would be prior to itself, which is impossible. Now in efficient causes it is not possible to go on to infinity, because in all efficient causes following in order, the first is the cause of the intermediate cause, and the intermediate is the cause of the ultimate cause, whether the intermediate cause be several, or only one. Now to take away the cause is to take away the effect. Therefore, if there be no first cause among efficient causes, there will be no ultimate, nor any intermediate cause. But if in efficient causes it is possible to go on to infinity, there will be no first efficient cause, neither will there be an ultimate effect, nor any intermediate efficient causes; all of which is plainly false. Therefore it is necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God.

The third way is taken from possibility and necessity, and runs thus. We find in nature things that are possible to be and not to be, since they are found to be generated, and to corrupt, and consequently, they are possible to be and not to be. But it is impossible for these always to exist, for that which is possible not to be at some time is not. Therefore, if everything is possible not to be, then at one time there could have been nothing in existence. Now if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing. Therefore, if at one time nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even now nothing would be in existence — which is absurd. Therefore, not all beings are merely possible, but there must exist something the existence of which is necessary. But every necessary thing either has its necessity caused by another, or not. Now it is impossible to go on to infinity in necessary things which have their necessity caused by another, as has been already proved in regard to efficient causes. Therefore we cannot but postulate the existence of some being having of itself its own necessity, and not receiving it from another, but rather causing in others their necessity. This all men speak of as God.

The fourth way is taken from the gradation to be found in things. Among beings there are some more and some less good, true, noble and the like. But “more” and “less” are predicated of different things, according as they resemble in their different ways something which is the maximum, as a thing is said to be hotter according as it more nearly resembles that which is hottest; so that there is something which is truest, something best, something noblest and, consequently, something which is uttermost being; for those things that are greatest in truth are greatest in being, as it is written in Metaph. ii. Now the maximum in any genus is the cause of all in that genus; as fire, which is the maximum heat, is the cause of all hot things. Therefore there must also be something which is to all beings the cause of their being, goodness, and every other perfection; and this we call God.

The fifth way is taken from the governance of the world. We see that things which lack intelligence, such as natural bodies, act for an end, and this is evident from their acting always, or nearly always, in the same way, so as to obtain the best result. Hence it is plain that not fortuitously, but designedly, do they achieve their end. Now whatever lacks intelligence cannot move towards an end, unless it be directed by some being endowed with knowledge and intelligence; as the arrow is shot to its mark by the archer. Therefore some intelligent being exists by whom all natural things are directed to their end; and this being we call God.

Reply to Objection 1. As Augustine says (Enchiridion xi): “Since God is the highest good, He would not allow any evil to exist in His works, unless His omnipotence and goodness were such as to bring good even out of evil.” This is part of the infinite goodness of God, that He should allow evil to exist, and out of it produce good.

Reply to Objection 2. Since nature works for a determinate end under the direction of a higher agent, whatever is done by nature must needs be traced back to God, as to its first cause. So also whatever is done voluntarily must also be traced back to some higher cause other than human reason or will, since these can change or fail; for all things that are changeable and capable of defect must be traced back to an immovable and self-necessary first principle, as was shown in the body of the Article.

22 07 2008
Jan

Bear, you probably know but the above arguments for the existence of God are put forward by St Augustine of Hippo.

23 07 2008
Bruce

Therefore it is necessary to arrive at a first mover, put in motion by no other; and this everyone understands to be God.

There is no reason for this to be “God” by fiat any more that the Invisible Pink Unicorn or the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Argument from fiat: Fail.

In any case, you notion of a “before” belies a lack of understanding of the most accepted notions of the nature of time, for which there is no ” before” time.

Therefore it is necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God.

This is just a restatement of your first “proof”. In any case, if efficiency in explanation is what you seek, just took to Ockham’s Razor. A wave function is far more parsimonious that a bearded old man who through omniscience and omnipresence, watches kids when they masturbate.

Further, viewing the beginning of the Universe as a wave function negates the need for a before time, which a God theory requires.

The third way…

Prime mover in guise as argument from probability… See anthropic principal, Ockham’s Razor…

Also on your “third way” (a restatement of your first way)…

Now if this were true, even now there would be nothing in existence, because that which does not exist only begins to exist by something already existing.

Again, this is just prime mover in drag, but I really do suggest that you research some quantum mechanics. This statement is wrong. At a quantum level, all something needs to exist is probability, not some other thing to come along and create it.

Now the maximum in any genus is the cause of all in that genus; as fire, which is the maximum heat, is the cause of all hot things. Therefore there must also be something which is to all beings the cause of their being, goodness, and every other perfection; and this we call God.

Conflating good, perfection and being is bad enough to begin with. There is no evidence that a creator (if you believe in such a thing) has to be good or perfect. One only needs to find a serial killer with a creative streak in something beautiful and benign to find fault with the form of this argument.

But that’s not all that is wrong with it.

Firstly, it’s a restatement of the prime mover argument by stealth (through the mention of “being”) and any criticism or alternative that breaks or proves better than prime mover, does so to this argument.

Secondly, even if “God” is perfect and “Good”, it doesn’t follow that all perfection and goodness stems from “God”. This is just a cosmological inverse genetic fallacy.

Thirdly, there is no need to call the most good or the most perfect “God”. One need only search amongst humanity for the most perfect and most good and hope that one can do better.

The fifth way is taken from the governance of the world.

Oh dear.

We see that things which lack intelligence, such as natural bodies, act for an end, and this is evident from their acting always, or nearly always, in the same way, so as to obtain the best result. Hence it is plain that not fortuitously, but designedly, do they achieve their end. Now whatever lacks intelligence cannot move towards an end, unless it be directed by some being endowed with knowledge and intelligence; as the arrow is shot to its mark by the archer.

The “purpose” of the action of “natural bodies” isn’t a product of these “natural bodies” but of the imagination of the person observing the natural bodies. In order to have to explain a purpose (which coincidentally *cough* *cough* is usually asserted to be the kind of purpose that matches the God being argued for – Zeus, Jehovah, The Flying Spaghetti Monster or all of them at once) one has to actually prove the purpose exists and without circular argumentation.

The only way out of this vacuous argument is to substitute “purpose” with “benefit to humanity” (or whatever in nature the chosen God choses to benefit – blessed are the cheesemakers!), but then evolution becomes a far better explanation that design (for one it does away with having to explain the mixed blessings inherent in nature, which evermore defies the specifications that design theorists lay down for it, the more we learn about it).

In any case, even if design really was evident, it doesn’t point to a Christian God any more than a Muslim God, or a Raelian UFO God. In order to be a proof of a God which is mutually exclusive with the other contenders, the proof has to itself be exclusive, otherwise break non-contradiction.

This is inherent in all of your “proofs”. If we accepted that you had shown “God” to be true, we would also have to accept that you had demonstrated the truth of the others, and they can’t all be real can they?

Or can they?

Jan, I am the transubstantiated form of God and I have transubstantiated with the sole purpose of telling you to stop spamming Five Public Opinions. Indeed, if you don’t stop, then you will be waterboarded for all eternity after you die. You have proved my existence and this is a problem because I do no covet the attention of humans; I am the maximum of meekness am I not?

You think its annoying when Mormons come knocking at your door. You should try and think how I feel for a change! They don’t call it God bothering for no reason. And that Pink Unicorn was doing such a good job as a scapegoat.

23 07 2008
AV

And comment-spam it certainly is, Bruce . . .

Bear, you probably know but the above arguments for the existence of God are put forward by St Augustine of Hippo.

Um, no. You copied and pasted them, Jan, without proper attribution, from Thomas Aquinas.

I believe that would fall under the heading of “Bearing False Witness.” And correct me if I’m wrong, but the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church would take a dim view of that sort of thing, wouldn’t you say?

I’ll tell you what. I’m feeling generous, so I’ll give you to the end of the week to restate Aquinas’ arguments for god’s existence in your own words, and demonstrate that you actually understand what you are Aquinas was talking about. After that, it’s disemvowelment time.

23 07 2008
Jan

V T lv wtht fth, wtht ptrmn t dfnd, wtht std strggl fr trth, tht s nt lvng, bt xstng. wrds f Blssd Pr Grg Frsst, Trn, tl, (-) – prhps th r wrds fr y V. Ths yng mn s rmmbrd fr th gd h dd – nt fr wstng tm dngrtng thrs – Chrt s nt ngh: w nd scl rfrm, h sd t s, s h wrkd fr bth. H ls gv hs tm t hlp stblsh Cthlc dl nwsppr Mmnt whch ws bsd n th prncpls f Pp St. L Xs ncyclcl n scl nd cnmc mttrs, Rrm Nvrm. lthgh th Frsst fml ws wll-t-d, th fthr ws frgl nd nvr gv hs tw chldrn mch spndng mn. Wht lttl h dd hv, hwvr, Pr Grg gv t hlp th pr, vn sng hs trn fr fr chrt nd thn rnnng hm t b n tm fr mls n hs whr pnctlt nd frglt wr th lw. Whn skd b frnds wh h ftn rd thrd clss n th trns h wld rpl wth sml, Bcs thr s nt frth clss. Whn h ws chld pr mthr wth b n tw cm bggng t th Frsst hm. Pr Grg nswrd th dr, nd sng th bs shlss ft gv hm hs wn shs. t grdtn, gvn th chc b hs fthr f mn r cr h chs th mn nd gv t t th pr. H btnd rm fr pr ld wmn vctd frm hr tnmnt, prvdd bd fr cnsmptv nvld, spprtd thr chldrn f sck nd grvng wdw. H kpt smll ldgr bk cntnng dtld ccnts f hs trnsctns, nd whl h l n hs dth bd, h gv nstrctns t hs sstr, skng hr t s t th nds f fmls wh dpndd n hs chrt. H vn tk th tm, wth nr-prlyzd hnd, t wrt nt t frnd n th St. Vncnt d Pl Sct wth nstrctns rgrdng thr wkl Frd vsts. nl Gd knw f ths chrts; h nvr mntnd thm t thrs.

23 07 2008
Jan

Prhps V y shld fnd t mr bt th yng mn whs bd ls n th cffn – Yng ppl td wh r lkng fr rl mdl wll fnd smn t dntf wth n ths vbrnt yng tdrsmn wh cmbnd dp lv fr Chrst, dsr t srv th nd, nd mssn t mb sct nd pltcs wth Chrstn dls – prhps h s rl mdl fr y t!

23 07 2008
Jan

V … W s tht thngs whch lck ntllgnc … ct fr n nd (n yr cs, t nslt, r blttl) nd ths s vdnt frm thr ctng lwys, r nrl lwys, n th sm w … Nw whtvr lcks ntllgnc cnnt mv twrds n nd, nlss t b drctd b sm bng ndwd wth knwldg nd ntllgnc; s th rrw s sht t ts mrk b th rchr. Thrfr sm ntllgnt bng xsts b whm ll ntrl thngs r drctd t thr nd; nd ths bng w cll Gd. f y dn’t blv n Hm thn t’s bvs tht y r nt gng t b drctd n n ntllgnt mnnr nd wll cntn n ctng lwys, r nrl lwys, n th sm (m flng gnrs … dmwttd) w …

23 07 2008
Jan

Brc, y s, “Thr s n bfr tm.” Tht’s whr y’r wrng bcs tm nl xsts n ths rth, s thr s “bfr tm”. Thr s n tm n tr spc.

23 07 2008
Jan

nd Brc, w hv n tm fr yr vcs rgmnts tht thr s n “bfr tm” nd tm nd tm gn ppl lk m wndr wh Gd tk th tm nd, rll, wstd Hs tm n crtng ppl lk y wh r wstng r tm bt whn t cms yr tm f y hvn’t tkn th tm t rcgns Hm thn h’s nt gng t tk th tm t rcgns y nd y’ll b rght t f tm nd nd p n th blck byss whr thr’s plnt f tm t cntmplt th tm y hd n rth t tk th tm t chck t th Crtr f ll tm whl y hd th tm bfr y rn t f tm …

23 07 2008
Jan

Wh wnts t wst thr tm wth thsts nyw … n thng s fr sr … thr s thr Gd r thr sn’t. f H dsn’t xst nn f s s gng t b trbld … f H ds xst th thsts r gng t wsh H ddn’t!!!!!!

23 07 2008
AV

Now whatever lacks intelligence cannot move towards an end, unless it be directed by some being endowed with knowledge and intelligence; as the arrow is shot to its mark by the archer. Therefore some intelligent being exists by whom all natural things are directed to their end; and this being we call God.

More blatant copying-and-pasting without attribution, followed by personal abuse. (I have a comments policy for a reason.)

Sorry, Jan, but I’ve changed my mind. Your vowels are no longer welcome.

24 07 2008
Blueco

Looks as if you can dish it out AV but not take it!

24 07 2008
Bruce

What did AV dish out, Blueco? The notion that he was incredulous? Good grief what offensive conduct!

24 07 2008
AV

Looks as if you can dish it out AV but not take it!

Like I said, Blueco, I have a comments policy, and as it states, “Submitting a comment constitutes acceptance of this policy.”

Don’t like it? Don’t comment here.

I also asked Jan, quite reasonably in my view, to restate his arguments for God’s existence in his own words. I’m interested in hearing from Jan, not Jan passing off the words of Augustine, which a quick Google search reveals are actually the words of Aquinas, as his own.

Instead of co-operating, Jan ignored my request and responded with abuse. (Not very Christ-like behaviour, is it?) That’s banworthy behaviour on any blog. He’s lucky I’m allowing his consonants to stand.

27 07 2008
Blueco

You don’t get it, mate, you can insult people’s beliefs but when someone takes you up on it you cut them off. Don’t insult people’s beliefs if you don’t want them to respond in kind!

Bruce, if you can read, read the introductoryy posting – that’s why I say he can dish it out but not take it!

27 07 2008
Bruce

There’s a difference between criticising or mocking a belief, and attacking the person that holds it, Blueco. I’m not fool enough to be mislead into conflating the two. Jan wasn’t responding in kind at all.

There’s also a difference between heated discussion and spam.

27 07 2008
Blueco

Bruce, if HV wants to ridicule or mock the beliefs of others he opens himself up to ridicule and mockery of others and if he can’t take it back he shouldn’t start a blog like this. Instead he has become a censor of free speech.

27 07 2008
Bruce

Bruce, if HV wants to ridicule or mock the beliefs of others he opens himself up to ridicule and mockery of others…

I assume you mean “by” others, rather than “of others”. In which case you are still conflating. If AV wants to ridicule or mock the beliefs (and practices) of others he opens his own beliefs (and practices) up to ridicule and mockery, not his own person.

You aren’t applying your standard evenly Blueco.

Instead he has become a censor of free speech.

Rubbish. Jan can go and start their own blog, or talk to the press, or sing from the rooftop and AV isn’t stopping them.

Jan, conversely, is interrupting other people’s right to discuss by copiously spamming the thread (with cut and paste commentary), rather than by addressing the discussion at hand.

Of course, the person demonstrated the least respect for open discussion is your self. How else should we credit someone making an accusation of censoriousness when they use a line like “…he shouldn’t start a blog like this.“?

In any case Blueco, you can hardly complain seeing as you accepted the commentary rules by commenting in the first place.

Best you start your own blog. How’s “Blueco: Why theists talking over the top of atheists is democratic, but how by ignoring them, atheists are censorious!”, for a title? Sums up your understanding of open expression just nicely.

Better not delete any spam comments for viagra or what ever else. That would be censorious!

27 07 2008
AV

I’ve been quite busy this week and have not had a lot of time to spare for blogging. Bruce has eloquently put what I was going to reply to BlueCo regarding my treatment of Jan.

There is another reason why I try (with varying degrees of success) not to facilitate excessive personal abuse/flaming on this blog. While on popular blogs like Pharyngula and Dispatches from the Culture Wars it can be amusing to watch from the sidelines as the regulars severely fail to suffer fools gladly, I think there are those who may be discouraged from commenting if there is a high likelihood that they will be personally attacked or flamed, either by the blog owner or other commenters.

Having said that, people who confuse attacks upon beliefs with personal attacks are making a category mistake, and I’m not going to accept responsibility for misplaced hurt feelings on the part of those who insist on making and repeating said mistake. Such individuals are free not to frequent this blog, or any venue where their cherished beliefs and ideas are attacked or criticised. The notion that these individuals’ free speech is being curtailed because I have a comments policy that proscribes flaming and personal abuse, is patent nonsense. Nobody is depriving you of your free speech rights. You are free to criticise ideas you disagree with that you may encounter on this blog. You are free to start your own blog, or two blogs, or a hundred blogs if you so desire. So kindly stop whining.

In any case, this comment thread is being derailed way off topic, and I have a policy on that, too. If you want to complain further about my commenting policy and related issues, please do so on the page containing the comments policy.

27 07 2008
Bruce

In any case, this comment thread is being derailed way off topic, and I have a policy on that, too.

Indeed. Apologies for my part in the quest for the red herring.

28 07 2008
Blueco

NOW I’ve read the comment policy: “I reserve the right to be a capricious bastard and to refine this comment policy at the drop of a hat.” He sums himself up well, and even admits he doesn’t know who his father was!

28 07 2008
AV

Apologies for my part in the quest for the red herring.

No worries . . . that quest began much earlier in the thread when commenters such as Mark veered off the topic of the post in their apparent desire to feel offended, and Jan introduced his unattributed copying and pasting of the Thomist arguments for theism, none of which have any bearing on the topic of corpse-veneration at WYD.

Anyway, back to the topic.

29 07 2008
Bruce

More cut and paste spam… Great… If Vox Day is adept at addressing people’s points as you are Blueco, I doubt that anyone needs to read his book.

29 07 2008
arthurvandelay

New Book for you to Read: The Irrational Atheis
[. . .]

Yeah, I’m sorry, BlueCo, but I do have a policy against spam. You’ve worn out your welcome.

20 01 2009
Banned By The Administrator

Lk whrsn, fck y n th r y gddmn mthrfckr!!!

31 07 2009
Raymond Rice

You people down under need to get a life!!!

27 12 2009
Jessica Lauer

I hate to jump on this bandwagon of arguments. But I feel sick, and my heart hurts when I read some of this. So please take a minute:

First of all, I was having a bad day I asked my friend to pray for me the other day. Nothing wrong with that right? So tell me what wrong with asking someone that you believe to be in Heaven with God, to pray for you. We aren’t praying to these Holy men and Women-we are asking for their prayers to God.

Let’s put aside Pier Giorgio Frassati’s affiliation with the Catholic Church. He was a young man that spent a lot of his time helping the poor. He was the life of the party, but had morals and ideals. He even fell in love with a girl. He died at the age of 24 from polio that he contracted from helping the sick and the poor. Now if young people are inspired by this sort of person, why not let them be? Have you ever visited the gave of a loved one? SO did these youth at world youth day.

The Vatican is very weary with what they deem legit or not. These in incorrupt bodies that are exhumed, are tested and it is miraculous. But do you think the world wants to know about it? They are on display in various churches for both the believer and unbeliever to see. So go to Lourdes and see St. Bernadette, go to Laboure and see St. Catherine, (I would tell you to go to San Giovanni Rotando-like i did a few months ago- to see Saint Pio’s body but the Church just recently put him back in the ground). Go there and see for yourself if you are cynical. And have faith that there is something bigger than ourselves out there- and that Love will conquer all.

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