Ten Commandments

Manifesto that explains inter alia "the reason for life on planet Earth"

A welter of Palaeontologists, Evolutionary Biologists, Religious Sociologists and Archaeologists share the view that a highly intelligent, skilful and powerful Energy Force, hereinafter Extreme Energy Force, far beyond an understanding by mere Homo sapiens, is responsible for creating the Universe, planet Earth and life on it

The Big Bang 13.8 bil. years ago created the Universe Earth's solar system formed around 4.54 bil. years ago.
Precious few academics outside America still believe that Earth was created in six days and its maker rested on the seventh day. 
Nor do they believe that Adam & Eve were the first human inhabitants and kick-started Sinners by eating from a forbidden apple tree 7,521 years ago (5,500 BC).

Humans are classified as descendants of apes and chimpanzees that stared walking on two hind legs, not roaming on all fours.  Hence, the first humans were aptly named Homo erectus. 

Fossils indicate Homo erectus first appeared in East Africa around 2 million years agoNeanderthal began around 430,000 years ago. 

Homo sapiens first appeared 300,000 years ago in East Africa Homo sapiens, known as Early Modern Humans, appeared 125,000 circa years ago on the Savannah Plains in East Africa and moved beyond Africa about 65,000 years ago.

Noah did not take over 100+ years to build a wooden ark.  Nor did he live for 950 years - asserted in Genesis 9:29 Adam did not live for 930 years - asserted in Genesis 5:4.

Less than 1% of the population could read or write when scriptural patriarchs, Moses and Noah, reputedly lived. 

None of them had Bic biros and note pads to chronicle what they allegedly witnessed or feats they purportedly accomplished. 

  1. The Big Bang was the moment 13.8 billion years ago when the Universe began as a tiny, dense, fireball that exploded.  Most astronomers support The Big Bang Theory to explain how the Universe began. Contains a four minute video "What Is The Evidence For The Big Bang?" - worth a watch).

  2. Earth formed around 4.54 billion years ago (approx. one-third the age of the Universe) by accretion from the solar nebula.  Volcanic out-gassing probably created the primordial atmosphere and then the ocean, but the early atmosphere contained almost no oxygen.  Much of the Earth was molten because of frequent collisions with other bodies which led to extreme volcanism.  While the Earth was in its earliest stage (Early Earth), a giant impact collision with a planet-sized body named, Theia, is thought to have formed the Moon.  Over time, the Earth cooled, causing the formation of a solid crust, and allowing liquid water on the surface.

  3. Most palaeontologists identify the existence of Homo erectus as the commencement of human life on planet Earth. Homo erectus was geographically widespread in Africa and Asia.  It also had a long temporal span in the hominin fossil record (Antón 2003).  Its earliest appearance are in fossil records from localities in the Lake Turkana Basin, Kenya, that evidence Homo erectus around two million years ago. Homo erectus populations persisted until near the end of the Pleistocene (11,700 years ago), as evidenced by fossils from Southeast Asia. 

  4. The earliest known examples of Neanderthal-like fossils were around 430,000 years old. The best-known Neanderthals lived between about 130,000 and 40,000 years ago, after which all physical evidence of them vanishes.

  5. Bones of primitive Homo sapiens first appeared 300,000 years ago in Africa, with brains as large or larger than ours. They’re followed by anatomically modern Homo sapiens almost 200,000 years ago, and brain shape became essentially modern by at least 100,000 years ago.  At this point, humans had braincases similar in size and shape to ours.

Re b. above,  Earth was not made by a Christian God in six days who rested on the seventh day, being its Sabbath day as represented in The Book of Genesis 1:3–2:3Prior to media technologies available during the last hundred years, most notably the internet, this tale provided credence/comfort to some Folk.  It also enthused a lot of impressionable teenagers to join religious orders to be priests, teaching brothers or nuns. The stream of new recruits into Christian seminaries intent on wearing ornate vestments has reduced to a trickle, if it hasn't dried up entirely.  Seemingly Australia's Catholic church now sources its priests primarily from the Philippines.

1.    Noteworthy recent engineering achievements by modern Homo sapiens that required significant collective effort

The final three of the below four notable recent achievements in the history of Homo sapiens would not have occurred without commitment/dedication by exceedingly talented scientists, mathematicians and engineers, together with enormous financial resources that were committed to those recent project accomplishments:

  1. The Wright brothers, Orville and Wilbur, were two American brothers, inventors, and aviation pioneers who are credited with inventing and building the world's first successful airplane and making the first controlled, powered and sustained heavier-than-air human flight, on Dec 17, 1903.  From 1905 to 1907, the brothers developed their flying machine into the first practical fixed-wing aircraft. Although not the first to build and fly experimental aircraft, the Wright brothers were the first to invent aircraft controls that made fixed-wing powered flight possible The YouTube of that 2003 flight is worth a watch.

  2. Less than 60 years later, in 1961 Soviet cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, became the first man to orbit planet Earth in space at a max altitude of 187 miles.

  3. On July 20, 1969, spacecraft, Apollo 11, first landed humans on the Moon.  Commander, Neil Armstrong, and lunar module pilot, Buzz Aldrin, formed the American crew that landed the Apollo Lunar Module Eagle.  The flight lasted 8 days and three hours, thence splashing down in the Pacific Ocean on 24 July 1969.

  4. The Airbus A380 Superjumbo, Double-Decker, manufactured in Toulouse (southern France) is the largest passenger airliner ever to fly in the world, carrying up to 853 passengers and over 40 crew.

2.    The Universe, our Solar System and life on Earth were not merely an accident of nature, as some atheists credulously believe

Just as the above four recent accomplishments required much application by exceedingly talented and committed humans with an array of different skills, successfully actioning a. to e. further above starting 13.8 bil years ago required an Extreme Energy Force that Homo sapiens will never remotely understand.  Just as modern humans enjoy knowledge/information that other living creatures such as elephants and rats do not, the Extreme Energy Force that created the Universe possesses skills and powers beyond the understanding of the most intelligent of the animal kingdom, namely Homo sapiens.

The Extreme Energy Force that created the solar system that includes planet Earth 4.54 billion years circa ago and chose to put life on it, and seemingly nowhere else in the Universe, opted that life would be finite (eg. 70 years ave for a Homo sapiens and 15 years for a puppy dog circa).

Catering for life that is finite required two behaviours:

i).       A way to replace deceased humans with new lives necessitated creating two sexes (males & females) to enable animals, reptiles, birds, fish and insects to reproduce.

ii).      Instil within each of the two parents a strong nurturing, protective instinct of safeguarding their newborn often vulnerable offspring.

Re i). above:
When the Writer was about 7 or 8 his older brother told him that our parents had shown him and our still older brother a short book with graphics about human reproduction.  The thought of me sticking my wee wee inside the wee wee of a girl to make a baby seemed grotesque.  However, 10 years later after girls hips bulged and rounded and breasts appeared and the Writer had reached puberty, that prospect became infinitely more appealing.  The capacity to excite young adults to embark upon sexual intercourse, when prior to puberty the very thought was detestable, is a further example of how an Extreme Energy Force satisfied another requirement for sustained animal/bird/fish life on Earth.

Re ii). above:
The Writer plays golf at Nth Ryde Golf Course that has two large lakes and lots of ducks.  New ducklings are usually born between late July and early Sept.  If a golfer hits his golf ball twds the edge of either of those lakes and there are two parent ducks with half a dozen newly hatched ducklings in close proximity, expect to get attacked by the male parent as he hisses and snarls with venom to induce the golfer to move away from his newly hatched ducklings.  This inbuilt instinct to protect their newborns is instilled within the psyche of virtually all animal, bird and fish life on planet Earth.  Yet a further example of how an Extreme Energy Force encompassed another requirement for sustained life on Earth.

3.    The human body is an exceedingly complex and efficient animal

Humans are classified as descendants of apes and chimpanzees that stared walking on two hind legs, not roaming on all fours.  Hence, the first humans were aptly named Homo erectus.  Human life is created when a male injects sperm into the vagina of a female.  Approx. 9 months later a beautiful, complex, tiny, offspring is ejected from the mother's uterus.  It is necessary to appreciate the complexity of the human body, and the similar intricacy within most forms of life on Earth (animal, reptile, insect, fish and plant) to understand that life on Earth, and the vast uniqueness of Earth itself, was created by an Extreme Energy Force that some Homo sapiens can only remotely comprehend.  Whilst the majority of Homo sapiens cling to the teachings they received during childhood and adolescence, the Writer ceased believing in Santa Clause when he was about four years old.  Some adults still believe in their Santa Clause because it is comforting to do so or out of respect for their parents that encouraged them into Christianity.

A tiny newborn child has two eyes to see, two ears to hear, a nose to smell, a mouth to taste and digest food and fluid, as well as make audible sounds.  It has arms to hold objects and legs to propel itself.  It has a digestive system to metabolically extract energy from foods and fluids and organs to sort and excrete waste. All these organs perform a different purifying and storage role in the human body - stomach, bladder, small intestine, large intestine, liver, kidneys, pancreas.  Most importantly, there are two lungs to capture oxygen energy and a heart to pump blood and oxygen around their tiny body.  Earth contains thousands of similarly equipped, but less intelligent animals, as well as birds, fish and insects (eg bees and wasps) that support life on Earth.  The complex biology that grows with in the uterus of a human female over 9 months following fertilisation, and within females amongst other animals, birds, fish etc is not 'an accident of nature' as most atheists seem to believe. 

Creating Life on Earth for animals, birds, fish and insects, and the replacement of finite life with replacement life, may well have taxed the Extreme Energy Force more than setting off The Big Bang 13.8 bil years ago to create a Universe, with no height, width or depth.  Somehow it extends forever..

4.    Other animals, birds and fish are born with survival instincts

Unlike a newborn child that is entirely dependant upon its parent/s for survival in its early years, other animals, cold-blooded reptiles, insects, birds and fish are born with survival instincts in order to assist survival.  Birds do not need to be taught how to fly by their parents; newborn birds possess an instinct of how to fly. Turtles live in water, but are born on land.  As soon as they are born, their tiny, new legs instinctively retreat them to the seaHomo sapiens are born with virtually no life-protecting survival instincts, apart from sucking on a breast, crying and sleeping.

Just as Homo sapiens understand science that dogs and cats and elephants and rats cannot grasp, many Homo sapiens, not limited to atheists, fail to understand that an Extreme Energy Force -

A).    actioned The Big Bang 13.8 bil years ago circa to create a Universe of stars and planets; a Universe that has no limit or bounds to its height, width or depth, but continues in each direction forever;

B).    installed planet Earth's solar system 4.54 billion circa years ago that is heated by its Sun, with a nearby Moon that functions much like a planet and affects Earth's water tides;

C).    introduced life on planet Earth, starting with bacteria in the oceans and rivers. Then progressing to fish in the waterways, then animals walking on all fours, birds and insects inhabiting the lands, with modern Homo sapiens only appearing 125,000 circa years ago on the Savannah Plains in East Africa;

D).    instilled the means for sustaining life on Earth that is finite (all life eventually dies) by creating two sexes with xy and yy chromosomes, and a demonstrative sexual urge après puberty, so that life replaces itself by offspring being born; and

E).    designed a highly sophisticated human body (explained in 'A tiny newborn child above' - Section 3 above) and many other highly skilled animals, fish and plants as natural historian, David Attenborough, has attested for eons.

Just as 2, 3, and 4 (in Section 1 above) required an enormity of resources and expertise by some talented/committed Homo sapiens in recent times, life on Earth, involving inter alia the complexity of the human body, with the intelligence/capacity to put man on the moon and build enormous passenger aircraft (to cite just two recent achievements), required creation by an Extreme Energy Force far greater than the fables about a Christian God - contained within the Bible, and mentioned in the Qur’an 'et al'.

Homo sapiens is the most intelligent and capable of the animal kingdom, followed by Orangutans, Bottlenose Dolphins, Chimpanzees, Elephants, African Grey Parrots and so onHomo sapiens has no more right to a life after death than these other skilful animals. 

5.    The origins of religions have invariably been driven by 'crowd control' -  to desist the murder, rape and pillaging that had existed as far back as Homo erectus and Neanderthal, when "survival of the fittest' prevailed

During the earlier epoch of Homo erectus and Neanderthal, if your neighbour had a cave and you did not and it was a cold night, you likely entered that cave at night when s/he was asleep, killed your neighbour and likely ate him or her.  Just as the lion picks out and kills the slowest buffalo.  Likely you suffered the same fate as your neighbour on the next cold winter's night.  Survival of the fittest was the prevailing mindset because the alternative was death by hunger or cold.  Rulers such as Emperor Constantine in the 3rd Century AD recognised the important role that a belief in an Afterlife played in improving 'crowd control', thereby achieving more civil behaviour.

During at least the last 10,000 years Homo sapiens, across different parts of terra firma practiced a variety of religions, in an attempt to understand matters beyond their comprehension (such as the extent of the Universe and life on Earth).  Early humans worshiped Gods that they believed controlled the sun, tides, rainfall, temperature etc.  Religions not limited to the following manifested to facilitate 'Crowd Control': 

  • Hinduism was founded somewhere between 15th and 5th century BCE.

  • Zoroastrianism is an ancient Indo-Iranian religion said to date back to the 2nd millennium BCE.

  • Judaism, the foundation for all other Abrahamic religions.  Judaism originated in the kingdoms of Israel and Judah, which first appeared in the Levant around the 9th century BCE.

  • Jainism, once a dominant religion on the Indian subcontinent (before the rise of reform Hinduism in the 7th century CE).

  • Confucianism invariably traced to one man – the Chinese politician, teacher, and philosopher Confucius (551 – 479 BCE).

  • Taoism traces to a work attributed to the mythical Laozi (a contemporary of Confucius), the Tao Te Ching, whose oldest recorded edition dates back to the 4th century BCE.

  • Shintoism is a direct descendant of the animistic folk religion of the Yayoi, whose culture spread from the north of Kyushu to the rest of Japan from the 3rd century.

The belief that there is a life after death, and that one's position in that Afterlife is dependant upon one's treatment of others in this life, was promulgated by rulers such as Roman Emperor Constantine (3rd Century AD) who understandably wanted peace in his time.  The Afterlife Philosophy was promoted and supported by rulers successively to achieve 'crowd control'. The Afterlife Philosophy was successful in achieving more orderly behaviour amongst the populace.  Religious espoused faith/belief has been beneficial through the 2,000 years since stories about Jesus of Nazareth dying on a cross to save our souls began, and then after three days rising from the dead.  Those stories were bandied about by religions, and encouraged by rulers, that each benefited from that belief, albeit untrue. 

6.    Did God the Father send his only son, Jesus, to Earth to die a painful death on a cross to free humans from Original Sin?  Bollocks!  The notion that two imaginary 'first people' ate an apple from a forbidden apple tree that somehow stained all humans born well before 5,500BC, and those after, is preposterous.

If God The Father wanted to send a patent message that his "only son", Jesus of Nazareth, was divine, why didn't Jesus ascend into heaven with thousands of creditable witnesses present?  Why did God the Father send his "only son" to be crucified where there were few supposed witnesses to Jesus' resurrection into heaven, that grew in number from each re-write of the New Testament by the Catholic Spin Doctors over the centuries that were intent upon Burgeoning the Business  Prima facie, God the Father did a poor job when he sacrificed his 'only son' to a horribly painful human death -

(i.)      to free us from Original Sin because purportedly Eve, then Adam, had eaten an apple from a banned apple tree in The Garden of Eden 5,420 years ago; and

(ii.)     to prove that Jesus was divine. 

If God The Father was going to subject his only son to such a frightful, painful death on a wooden cross, one would expect God the Father to max. the benefits of that endeavour.  But God the Father failed miserably, as evidenced by the empty Catholic Churches on Sundays across the western World, none morose that the Bible Belt of the Mid-West of America.  50 years ago Christian churches in Minnesota and Minneapolis were packed to the rafters on a Sunday morning.  Now, apart from a few grandparents and grandchildren, they are devoid at Sunday services.  Australia has to import priests from the Philippines because Aussie teenagers are no longer influenced to be a priest or a teaching Christian Brother or Marist Brother.  Whereas as recent as 50 years ago, teenagers in Catholic schools were flocking to the call of God and inducted into seminaries to wear distinctive vestments.

            "I have very little doubt that some of Jesus’ followers believed that they had seen him alive after his death. Yet the world is full of such extraordinary claims, and “The Case for Christ” has provided, in my evaluation, no truly compelling evidence to prove the historicity of Jesus’ resurrection."  -  The Conversation - Misha Ketchell, Editor

It is only from the far greater understanding of the evolution of humans, initially from access to books/newspapers, then radio, TV and now the internet, and the distribution of that knowledge by academic theologians and palaeontologists, that the gross misrepresentations regarding Christianity, in particular that Jesus Christ rose from the dead, are becoming clear.  Seemingly the Greeks were the first to promulgate the 'forbidden apple tree' myth.   

It was not God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost (The Holy Trinity) that inter alia professed that the first human inhabitants of terra firma were Adam and Eve that lived in The Garden of Eden on their lonesome only 7,520 years ago and survived by eating copious amounts of fruit, but no protein or carbohydrates. It was the writers of the Old Testament, who ever they actually were, and who spun them and re-spun them over the centuries.  Jesus was not an only child of Mary and Joseph, but had at least four brothers and sisters.  Following Jesus' crucifixion, his brother, James, became the most important leader of the early Christian church. 

According to Genesis 4, after being exiled from the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve had two sons: Cain and Abel. Cain was the first son.  The Old Testament doesn’t specify how much later that Abel was born.  Hence, the population of Earth according to the Old Testament had doubled from two to four.  But who mothered Cain and Abel's children, as Eve was the only female?  If Eve mothered them, surely any children would have suffered from inbreeding and genetic abnormalities; hardly a solid basis for the Christian divine God to populate the planet.

7.    Following Jesus of Nazareth's painful death, his character was stolen by others who aligned with Jesus' teachings and guidance. They falsified him rising from the dead to enhance their own endeavours/pursuits/agenda. A disturbing irony because Jesus of Nazareth spoke out against 'false gods' in the temples.  Jesus had reproved well-dressed imposters in the temples that would promise the vulnerable a possie in the Afterlife, but only at their pecuniary price.  Jesus' painful death on a wooden cross was exploited by the same 'false goods' that Jesus had rebuked.  A poignant irony that should not be overlooked amidst this well-intentioned revolutionary preacher's unfortunate demise. 

8.    Other recent biblical historians argue that the Jesus story is actually the story of a Roman Emperor to pacify the poor.

9.    A thick book, Zealot, written/published by an Iranian American in 2012, that became a New York Times best seller, is a further literary instalment focusing on a demythologized Jesus, a strictly human figure who did not seek to found Christianity and who stayed dead when he died on a wooden cross.  Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth is a book by Iranian-American writer and scholar, Reza Aslan.  It is a historical account of the life of Jesus and analyses the various religious perspectives on Jesus as well as the creation of Christianity. 

Below are three extracts from Jon Santiago’s appraisal of Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” written by Reza Aslan 

"On Jesus' Death and Resurrection

·         Punishment by crucifixion was common during Jesus' lifetime. Why?

 o   It was cheap. All you needed was a tree.

 o   They were always carried out in public, where people would have to see the grossness of it.

 o   The criminal was always left hanging long after he had died; he wasn’t buried.

.         “Because the entire point of the crucifixion was to humiliate the victim and frighten the witnesses, the corpse would be left where it hung to be eaten by dogs and picked clean by the birds of prey.”

.          Bones would be thrown into a heap of trash, which is how Golgotha got its name.

.          Reserved for the most extreme offenses: treason, rebellion, sedition, banditry.

·          Every person who claimed to have witnessed the risen Jesus died refusing to recant their testimony.

 o   Not unusual as many zealous Jews died refusing to deny their beliefs.

 o   But at the same time, “It was precisely the fervour with which the followers of Jesus believed in his resurrection that transformed this tiny Jewish sect into the largest religion in the world.”

"Understanding the politics of Jesus’ lifetime

·         To become a high priest in Jerusalem meant coming from a noble, high-class background.

·         The priest class collected taxes and tribute. They kept the Jewish population in order on behalf of the Roman Empire, “tasks for which they were richly compensated.”

·         Wide gap between rich and poor in the Roman Empire.

o    As a result, the poor often rebelled by having insurrections.

o    Some poor Jews thought they were doing God’s work by uprising against the Roman elite. They saw themselves as freedom fighters while the Romans considered them bandits.

·         To call yourself a messiah during the time of Roman occupation was like declaring war against Rome.

o    During this time period, there were many guys who claimed this title before Jesus.

o    “In first-century Palestine, simply saying the words ‘This is the messiah,’ aloud and in public, can be a criminal offense, punishable by crucifixion.”

·         Social order in Judea crumbled as a result of revolts led by those claiming to be messiahs. The following factors contributed to the rebellious atmosphere in Palestine:

o    Over-taxation by the Romans

o    Corruption by the Jewish aristocracy, who bribed the Romans for more power and influence.

o    Temple leadership wasn’t fair and just. Instead, it fostered widespread injustice and crushing poverty.

"Despite Catholic doctrine of Jesus' mother’s perpetual virginity, Jesus had brothers. Aslan says this fact is indisputable that is confirmed by both the gospels and letters of Paul."

Jesus had at least four brothers – James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas – plus an unknown number of sisters who weren’t named.

His brother, James, was the most important leader of the early Christian church.

Aslan speculates that the story about his birth to a virgin is cover for the possibility that Jesus was born out of wedlock."

Charlotte Allen has a doctorate in medieval and Byzantine studies and the author of The Human Christ: The Search for the Historical Jesus.”  Below is an extract from a review by Charlotte Allen of “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth” written by Reza Aslan

"UC Riverside professor Reza Aslan’s new book, “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth,” currently occupies the No. 1 spot on Amazon’s bestseller list. The Iranian-born Aslan, who converted from Islam to evangelical Christianity as a teenager, then converted back to Islam, has also received the kind of publicity that every liberal author craves: getting dissed on Fox News.

In a July 26 interview, Fox religion correspondent, Lauren Green, peppered him with questions about why he, a Muslim, had written “a book about the founder of Christianity.” Progressive columnists and bloggers all over America stuck pins into their Fox News dolls, using words like “atrocious,” “embarrassing” and “Islamophobic.”

In fact, Green’s questions weren’t so much appalling as they were irrelevant. As Aslan explained to her, “Zealot” does not present a Muslim view of Jesus. According to the Koran, Jesus was a prophet, born of a virgin (although he wasn’t the son of God), but he was never crucified, instead ascending directly into heaven.

So Aslan’s book, which portrays Jesus as a Jewish-nationalist revolutionary with no divine self-conception, departs from the doctrine of both Islam and Christianity. Aslan may or may not be a devout Muslim in his private life, but his book is actually the latest instalment in a vast body of literature reflecting the beliefs of a completely different religion: the Church of the Historical Jesus.

The aim of this church, which has been around since the Enlightenment and its worship of rationalism, is to peel away the Gospel stories, with their virgin birth, their miracles and their walking on water, to uncover the “real” Jesus, a demythologized, strictly human figure who didn’t found Christianity and who stayed dead when he died. Its adherents tend to be non-Christians fascinated by Jesus, secular intellectuals in general and liberal Christians, including many clergymen and New Testament scholars, whose sensibilities are embarrassed by traditional Christianity’s claim to supernatural origins and its extravagant assertions about Jesus’ divinity, his atonement on the cross for human sin and his resurrection from the dead on Easter morning."

Intelligent secure Folk now recognise that the following extract from britannica.com of conflicting extracts from Genesis 1:1–2:4 and Genesis 2:5–7, 2:15–4:1, 4:25 as to when Adam & Eve lived that had comforted and directed uneducated Folk for almost 2,000 years are untrue.  Genesis 1:1–2:4 quotes the 5th or 6th century BCE, yet Genesis 2:5–7, 2:15–4:1, 4:25 asserts that Adam and Eve lived in the 10 Century BCE.  Below is an extract from Britannica :

"In the Bible there are two accounts of their creation. According to the Priestly (P) history of the 5th or 6th century BCE (Genesis 1:1–2:4) and God on the sixth day of Creation created all the living creatures and, “in his own image,” man both “male and female.” God then blessed the couple, told them to be “fruitful and multiply,” and gave them dominion over all other living things.

According to the lengthier Yahwist (J) narrative of the 10th century BCE (Genesis 2:5–7, 2:15–4:1, 4:25), God, or Yahweh, created Adam at a time when the earth was still void, forming him from the earth’s dust and breathing “into his nostrils the breath of life.” God then gave Adam the primeval Garden of Eden to tend but, on penalty of death, commanded him not to eat the fruit of the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.” Subsequently, so that Adam would not be alone, God created other animals but, finding these insufficient, put Adam to sleep, took from him a rib, and created a new companion, Eve. The two were persons of innocence until Eve yielded to the temptations of the evil serpent and Adam joined her in eating the forbidden fruit, whereupon they both recognized their nakedness and donned fig leaves as garments.

Below is an extract from a Book Review of ‘Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth’ in the Washington Post:   

"In Zealot, Aslan gives us a Jesus who fights back, and not in the manner of Gandhi. But his rebellion fails. Roman authorities crucify him for sedition. His followers scatter. And those who return in his name reinvent him as a pacifist lording over a purely spiritual kingdom.  In short, Jesus was a frustrated Muhammad — a man who, like Islam’s founder, came to revolutionize the world by force.  Yet unlike Muhammad, Jesus failed."

10.  Inaccuracies in the Old and New Testaments - scribed by a diverse array of scattered individuals across several countries over many hundreds of years back when paper had not been disseminated to Greece and Israel  -The physical ages of famous religious Patriarchs listed in the Book of Genesis are not believable, because the oldest independently verified human was Jeanne Calment (1875–1997) of France, who lived 122 years and 164 days

Folk back in the embryo of Homo sapiens existence focused on feeding their family and keeping warm in winter - a full-time job. 

About 2 million of the world’s five million or so Jews at that time of Jesus of Nazareth lived in the Jerusalem area.  The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem were puppets of the Roman government.  A handful of merchants, high priests and leaders lived in luxury, while the vast majority of the Jewish population lived in poverty. The local government was corrupt, inflation and landlessness were high and peasants paid huge taxes to absentee landlords and corrupt Jewish priests.

Downtrodden Jews were not interested in an evangelist preachings, unless he spoke-out against Roman taxes collected by Jews from the priestly class appointed by the Romans.

Most Folk never moved more than 20 miles from where they were born, because no public transport.  Not even a stage coach. 

Unlike the larger camel (originated in North America), the smaller donkey hadn't taken to walking too far weighed down by a human.

Bones of primitive Homo sapiens first appeared 300,000 years ago in East Africa.  Not a mere 5,000 or 6,000 years BC as attested in Genesis 1:1–2:4.  The Christian bible is abundant with misrepresentations that the Writer will further chronicle herein for interested Folk that possess the capacity to opine upon and respond to scribepj@gmail.com if/where they disagree.

Noah, a Hebrew, was the son of Lamech according to Genesis 5:28-32.  Noah was not a Jew, but he was an ancestor of the JewsHow does The Book of Genesis - Chapters 5 - 9 know that the reputed wooden ark builder, Noah, lived for 950 years?  Was there someone around at Noah's birth who outlived Noah, who thence magically conversed with Moses (about Noah's mammoth age) that in Moses spare time Moses reputedly wrote The Book of Genesis?  It seems that Moses wore so many 'goal kicking caps', because some readers had heard of Moses.

Below is an extract from Genesis flood narrative assertedly 2472 BC:

"Noah entered the Ark in his six hundredth year, and on the 17th day of the second month of that year "the fountains of the Great Deep burst apart and the floodgates of heaven broke open" and rain fell for forty days and forty nights until the highest mountains were covered to a depth of 15 cubits, and all earth-based life perished except Noah and those with him in the Ark."

 

Below is an extract from Robert A. Moore's "The Impossible Voyage of Noah's Ark" - published on National Center for Science Education, Oakland, California:

"It has by now become abundantly clear that the case for the ark utterly and completely fails. Despite the clever ingenuity of its proponents, nothing, from the trickiest problems to the tiniest details, can be salvaged without an unending resort to the supernatural. This includes so many pointless prodigies, so many inane interventions for no reason other than to save a literalistic Bible, that religion itself is cheapened in the process, not to mention the total abandonment of any semblance of science. No doubt in days to come some erstwhile archaeologists will concoct "solutions" to some of the difficulties we have raised, but no intellectually honest person can any longer pretend that the legend of Noah can possibly represent a historical occurrence."

Much of the biblical flood story of Noah was plagiarized from "The Epic of Gilgamesh," the mythical Sumerian account of Ut-Napishtim written on stone tablets around 2000 BC.  In "The Epic of Gilgamesh, one righteous man was spared from a worldwide flood by building a large boat with a single door and one window. The ark contained a few other human beings plus plant and animal specimens. Rains covered the mountains with water. Birds were sent to find land. The boat landed on a mountain in the middle east. Ut-Napshtim sacrificed an animal as an offering, and the Babylonian gods expressed regret for flooding the earth.  The Flood of Noah (5,000 BC) and the earlier story of the Flood of Gilgamesh (7th Century BC) - published by Institute for Creation Research - explains the significant parallels to the subsequent flood of Noah's day.  It provides 19 similarities between the two flood myths and draws on references from 16 earlier publications.

The table below presents a comparison of the main aspects of the accounts of each flood as presented in the Book of Genesis and in the earlier Epic of Gilgamesh.

 

BOOK OF GENESIS

EPIC of GILGAMESH

Extent of flood

Global

Global

Cause

Man's wickedness

Man's sins

Intended for whom?

All mankind

One city & all mankind

Sender

Yahweh

Assembly of "gods"

Name of hero

Noah

Utnapishtim

Hero's character

Righteous

Righteous

Means of announcement

Direct from God

In a dream

Ordered to build boat?

Yes

Yes

Did hero complain?

Yes

Yes

Height of boat

Several stories (3)

Several stories (6)

Compartments inside?

Many

Many

Doors

One

One

Windows

At least one

At least one

Outside coating

Pitch

Pitch

Shape of boat

Rectangular

Square

Human passengers

Family members only

Family & few others

Other passengers

All species of animals

All species of animals

Means of flood

Ground water & heavy rain

Heavy rain

Duration of flood

Long (40 days & nights plus)

Short (6 days & nights)

Test to find land

Release of birds

Release of birds

Types of birds

Raven & three doves

Dove, swallow, raven

Ark landing spot

Mountain -- Mt. Ararat

Mountain -- Mt. Nisir

Sacrificed after flood?

Yes, by Noah

Yes, by Utnapishtim

Blessed after flood?

Yes

Yes

The flood story of Genesis (chapter 7) has long been plagued by problems with its precise chronology. The Christian Bible contains conflicting statements about the duration and sequence of events.  The story of Noah's Ark contains conflicting time-scales for different events, not limited to 40 days, 150 days, 47 days, 253 days and 314 days.

Below is an extract from a Wikipedia page titled "List of the verified oldest people":

          "Oldest person ever whose age has been independently verified is Jeanne Calment (1875–1997) of France, who lived to the age of 122 years and 164 days

            Oldest verified man ever is Jiroemon Kimura (1897–2013) of Japan, who lived to the age of 116 years and 54 days.

            Oldest known currently living person is Kane Tanaka of Japan, aged 118 years, 309 days.

            Oldest known living man is Saturnino de la Fuente García, of Spain, aged 112 years, 269 days.

            Oldest women have, on average, lived several years longer than the 100 oldest men."

The oldest was Jeanne Calment (1875–1997) of France, who lived to the age of 122 years and 164 days.  No one amongst academia in medical science, except a few devout Christian Americans, remotely believe the ages chronicled below (extracted from "Chapter 13 - Ancient Biblical Lifespans: Did Adam Live Over 900 Years?".

 

Patriarch

Age

Bible Reference

1

Adam

930

Genesis 5:4

2

Seth

912

Genesis 5:8

3

Enosh

905

Genesis 5:11

4

Cainan

910

Genesis 5:14

5

Mahalalel

895

Genesis 5:17

6

Jared

962

Genesis 5:20

7

Enoch

365 (translated)

Genesis 5:23

8

Methuselah

969

Genesis 5:27

9

Lamech

777

Genesis 5:31

10

Noah

950

Genesis 9:29

Rabbinical Judaism asserts that Moses lived for 120 years from 1391–1271 BC.  Jerome (born Eusebius Sophronius Hieronymus in Dalmatia circa 347) suggested Moses was born in 1592 BC  James Ussher (Church of Ireland Archbishop 1,600 AD circa) suggested 1571 BC as Moses' birth year.  Did Moses ever live?  Or if he lived, did he scale to the summit of Mt. Sinai (over 2,000m up) to receive two stone tablet from God that listed the Ten Commandments, and some how lung them back down the mountain but to where?  Or did Moses prepare those ten life rules himself?  After all Moses was he was recognised as the leader of the Israelites and a lawgiver to whom the authorship, or "acquisition from heaven", of the Torah (the first five books of the Bible) is attributed"

"The Ten Commandments contain little that was new to the ancient world and reflect a morality common to the ancient Middle East. They are a description of the conditions accepted by the community of Israel in its relationship to Yahweh. The differences found in Exodus and Deuteronomy indicate that the process of transmission from generation to generation brought with it modifications.

 

 

 

 

The Ten Commandments had no particular importance in Christian tradition until the 13th century, when they were incorporated into a manual of instruction for those coming to confess their sins. With the rise of Protestant churches, new manuals of instruction in the faith were made available and the Ten Commandments were incorporated into catechisms as a fundamental part of religious training, especially of the young."

Tradition credits Moses as the author of Genesis, as well as the books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and most of Deuteronomy.  But modern scholars, especially from the 19th century onward, see them as being written hundreds of years after Moses is supposed to have lived, in the 6th and 5th centuries BC.  Patently Moses was a busy chap. Was Noah's birth certificate and death notice filed with the Hebrew Bureau of Statistics?  Or did Noah file a Stat Dec as to when he was born?  Could Noah read and write?  If so, what did he read from and write on?..........................A lot of unanswered questions.

11.    So much of the New Testament that recounted Jesus' words is narrated as though the scribe, be it Matthew, Mark, Luke or John, was writing down every word that Jesus uttered

Most religious historians believe that Jesus of Nazareth died somewhere between 30 AD and 33 AD.  Accredited theologian, John Drane, who wrote "The Bible as library" contend that:

"The Old Testament is the original Hebrew Bible, the sacred scriptures of the Jewish faith, written at different times between about 1200 and 165 BC."

"The New Testament has 27 books, written between about 50 and 100 AD, and falling naturally into two sections: the Gospels, which tell the story of Jesus (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John); and the Letters (or epistles) - written by various Christian leaders to provide guidance for the earliest church communities."

So much of the New Testament that recounted Jesus' words is narrated as though the writer, be it Matthew, Mark, Luke or John, was writing down every word that Jesus uttered.  Yet no Bic biros or lead pencils, no paper in Jerusalem until the 10th or 11th Century and according to John Drane, who wrote "The Bible as library", these Gospels were scribed at least 17 years after Jesus death.  A cynic could suppose that these gospels were pencilled centuries after Jesus' death and spun and re-spun right up to the last 100 years or so.

Below is an extract from Matthew 26: 17-30 that reads as though it was written at The Last Supper, and not purportedly 17 to 67 years after it  "...written between about 50 and 100 AD":

The Last Supper

17   On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover?”

18   He replied, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’” 

19   So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover.

20   When evening came, Jesus was reclining at the table with the Twelve. 

21   And while they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.”

22   They were very sad and began to say to him one after the other, “Surely you don’t mean me, Lord?

23   Jesus replied, “The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. 

24   The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”

25   Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, “Surely you don’t mean me, Rabbi?
       Jesus answered, “
You have said so.”

26   While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”

27   Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 

28   This is my blood of the[a] covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 

29   I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”

30   When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

Below is an extract from Matthew 2 - New King James VersionWise Men from the East

"Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, 

saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.”

When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.

So they said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet:

 6 ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
Are not the least among the rulers of Judah;
For out of you shall come a Ruler
Who will shepherd My people Israel.’ ”

Then Herod, when he had secretly called the wise men, determined from them what time the star appeared. 

And he sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the young Child, and when you have found Him, bring back word to me, that I may come and worship Him also.”

When they heard the king, they departed; and behold, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came and stood over where the young Child was. 

10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy. 

11 And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

12 Then, being divinely warned in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed for their own country another way.

How did the apostle, Matthew, know in the years after Jesus death when he pencilled the above extract from Mathew 2 (a gospel in the New Testament), what King Herod had actually uttered somewhere between 30 and 60 years earlier that reputedly occurred prior to Jesus birth in Bethlehem of Judea?  How did King Herod know of the imminent birth of Jesus? 

The fable of Three Wise Men somehow knowing that a saviour of the world, sent by God, was soon to be born in a barn in Bethlehem, is lust as preposterous as Noah and his big Arc that reputedly took Noah and his family over 100 years to build and housed all those animals during the flood when  ".. and all earth-based life perished except Noah and those with him in the Ark."

King Herod, sometimes called "Herod the Great" (circa 74 to 4 B.C.) was a king of Judea who ruled the territory with Roman approval The below extract from Mathew 2 - verses 19 to 21 is farcical:

19 Now when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 20 saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the young Child’s life are dead.” 21 Then he arose, took the young Child and His mother, and came into the land of Israel.

How did the Apostle, Matthew, know that Jesus' dad, Joseph, had a dream 40+ years earlier that he (Joseph) should take his wife, Mary, and "only child" to Israel?  Maybe Joseph told Matthew.  But he couldn't have because Joseph only lived for 101 years and died in Israel in 1 AD - at lease 25 years before Jesus met Matthew.

11.       Internet sites that list countless inconsistencies within both the Old and New Testaments

Below are website that identify glaring differences of the same asserted events.

In the case of the Old Testament, according to both Jewish and Christian Dogma, the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy (the first five books of the Bible and the entirety of the Torah) were all written by Moses in about 1,300 B.C. However, there is a lack of evidence that Moses ever existed.

In the case of the New Testament, inconsistencies exist within the gospels, reportedly scripted by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John between 50AD and 100AD.

1.  Bible Inconsistencies – Bible Contradictions?

       a)    Key to Abbreviations
       b)    Introduction to the Bible and Biblical Problems
       c)    Fatal Bible Flaws?
       d)    Bible Absurdities
       e)    Bible Atrocities
        f)    Bible Precepts: Questionable Guidelines?
       g)    Bible Vulgarities

2.    Internal consistency of the Bible - Wikipedia

3.   American Atheists Biblical Contradictions

4.   Biblical contradictions - Rational Wiki

5.   Evil Bible - focuses on vicious killing of the Pagans by the Christian Crusaders, seemingly who relied upon the word of God in the Bible to justify the mass slaughter

6.   The Sceptics Annotated Bible

7.   A list of over 700 inconsistencies in the Bible

8.   Some Reasons Why Humanists Reject The Bible

9.    Contradictions in The Old Testament

10.  101 Myths of the Bible: How Ancient Scribes Invented Biblical History

12.    Pascal's wager
Seemingly, a number of Folk have adopted Pascal's wager - presented by the seventeenth-century French philosophertheologianmathematician, and physicistBlaise Pascal (1623–1662) who lived for only 39 years, but left his mark.  Pascal's gamble (for want of a better word) posits that some humans opt to have a leg in each camp as to -

*        whether God, and an Afterlife exists, or

*        that there is no Afterlife.

Pascal reasoned that a rational person should live as though God exists and seek to believe in God.  If God does not exist, such a person will have only a finite loss (some pleasures, luxury, etc.).  Whereas if God does exist, he stands to receive infinite gains (as represented by eternity in Heaven) and avoid infinite losses (perhaps an eternity in Hell).

Pascal's Wager looses some of its gloss when one digs deeper into what life in Heaven reputedly entails.

12.   Different religions make conflicting claims about what heaven is an how many get a guernsey, and what that guernsey entitles a lucky entrant to

The Catholic Church contends that only a person’s soul lives on after death.  But a soul can’t talk or drink beer or play golf.  Being juxtaposed with squillions of other Catholic souls for eternity in heaven is not an appealing prospect to the Writer who had no complaints before he was born, and doesn't expect any after his death.

Whereas as chronicled in The Book of Revelation 144,000 followers of Jehovah's Witnesses get given a new, schmickers, brand spankers body at the end of their life on Earth.  But bad luck for the vast majority of the 8,695,808 Jehovah's Witnesses followers split across 120,387 Congregations (these numbers listed on its website) that are beyond the 144,000 cap listed in Revelations.


Based on their understanding of scriptures such as Revelation 14:1-4, Jehovah's Witnesses believe that exactly 144,000 faithful Christians go to heaven to rule with Christ in the kingdom of God."

The chosen 144,000 Jehovah's Witnesses followers get  ".......to rule with Christ in the kingdom of God", whereas Catholic souls are content to merely be in the glory of their God for evermore.

Wikipedia asserts that 144,000 followers was a popular Cap in The Book of Revelation (final book of the New Testament) written sometime around 96 AD in Asia Minor:

·         Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believes that the sealing of the 144,000 relates to the high priests, ordained unto the holy order of God, to administer the everlasting gospel; "for they are they who are ordained out of every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, by the angels to whom is given power over the nations of the earth, to bring as many as will come to the church of the Firstborn."

 

·         Christian Skoptsy sect in Russia believed that the Messiah would come when there were 144,000 Skoptsy believers, based on their reading of the Book of Revelation.

 

·         Unification Church founded by Reverend Sun Myung Moon believes the 144,000 represents the total number of saints whom Christ must find "who can restore through indemnity the missions of all the past saints who, despite their best efforts to do God's Will, fell prey to Satan when they failed in their responsibilities. He must find these people during his lifetime and lay the foundation of victory over Satan's world"

 

·         Islam - 144,000 is alleged to have been the number of Sahaba of Muhammad, though other totals have been given.  The number is also given as the total number of prophets in Islam, although this has also been reported as 124,000 or 244,000. The actual number of prophets or Sahaba (Companions) is not known; seemingly about 30 prophets are mentioned by name in the Qur'an.

Upon a closer examination Pascal's wager doesn't possess the gloss that some might have thought.  If you die as a devout Catholic there is not a lot of attraction to being an inanimate soul that can't even chat whilst transfixed in the glory of God, juxtaposed against lots of fellow Catholic brethren for an eternity.  If you are a follower of Jehovah's Witnesses, or one of the other abovementioned four religions, and you miss that tiny 144,000 entry limit to heaven, all those Bible Study classes might have been for precious little.

13.  Several Biblical scholars have recently controversially claimed the story of Jesus Christ is almost a carbon copy of an earlier ancient Greek deity, Dionysus, and that God the Father was plagerised by the Romans in the writing of the Bible in order to control the Roman populace.  The Bible's message was that there is a life after death, and your position in that life is dependant upon your behaviour in this life.  A heavenly father is watching over you so be a good person and don't murder, rape or pillage. 

14.   Religions over the ages have provided a vital crutch, a stanchion against the unknown  -  All religions are remarkably similar and were created to address the same human needs

Throughout the ages Homo sapiens has struggled to understand things beyond their comprehension (such as the extent of the Universe and Life on Earth) and created religions to fill the void. These religions have universally sought to give meaning to our existence, show deference to the God, or Gods, they believe must exist as creators of the things that we are incapable of understanding.  In most cases they promise eternal life to those who truly and exclusively believe in that particular religion.

Most religions have impressive cathedrals, churches, temples, or alters (and even massive pyramids like the Pyramid of the Sun in Mexico). They also have rituals intended to take their followers on a journey that will impress, and in some cases, intimidate them. Prima facie, the central purpose of these elaborate metaphorical ancient buildings, and rituals practiced, is to reinforce that the religion is well-established and has substance.  Priests, ministers, bishops, imams, muftis, and other religious leaders present as important people, wearing colourful ancient garb, with the knowledge and power to set the direction of people’s lives and help them through the big events and crises they may encounter. Cardinal Pell ceremoniously relied upon pomp and ceremony to add to his rendition.

Parliaments across the western world have also drawn upon pomp and ceremony to add credence to their importance.  Each new Australian Federal Parliament begins with the opening by the Governor-General on the first day the two houses meet after a general election.  Dignitaries and politicians perform historic rituals to add weight to Parliament re-opening, repeating the same-old, same-old. 

15.   Many religions have had a God dying and rising from the dead

In ancient religions, there is the repetition of the figure known as the Dying and Rising Gods, often a powerful entity himself, who is killed or dies and comes back to life for the good of his people:

(i)         Osiris in Egypt

(ii)        Lord Krishna in India

(iii)       Hun Hunahpu the Maize God in Mesoamerica

(iv)       Bacchus the Roman God of wine and viticulture 

(v)        Attis in Greece

(vi)       Tammuz Mesopotamian God of fertility and Dumuzid the God of the Good Shepherd

The theme of life-after-death and judgment after death, reputedly gained fame through the evangelical efforts of St. Paul the Apostle who spread the word of the dying and reviving of Jesus Christ (c. 42- 2 AD).  At this time, the majority of people were uneducated and most had not travelled beyond their local area. They were not worldly, and would have been unaware that this theme was not original.  Perhaps Paul's vision of the figure of Jesus, the anointed son of God who dies to redeem humanity was drawn from the earlier belief systems familiar to the scribes who would write pertinent books of the Old Testament, because it was a popular mythology amongst the above six ancient religions et al.

16.    Ritualistic and respected burial of the dead has been practiced by all races through the ages

Five world religions (Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam) all mark the important events in a person's life such as birth, marriage and death in different ways, but there are often similar concepts.  Death sees the close of a human life on earth, and the ritual and beliefs linked to death and the funeral have been an important way for the family and friends of the deceased to acknowledge the passing into a life after death.

17.   An Afterlife was not an original concept by Christians

Religions generally promise life after death. There was an Afterlife similar to an earthly existence (Egypt and Greece), antithetical to life on Earth (Mesoamerica and Mesopotamia), or a combination of both (China and India).  Christianity made standard a belief in an Afterlife and set up an organized set of rituals by which an adherent could gain everlasting life.  It could be seen that in so doing, the early Christians were simply following in the footsteps of the Sumerians, the Egyptians, the Phoenicians, the Greeks, and the Romans, all of whom had their own stylized rituals for the worship of their gods.

18.   The Bible is the work of men – not the word of God

We should accept that men such as Buddha, Mohammad, and many of the 35 prophets who wrote the chapters of the Bible, were perceptive and understood a great deal about the human condition. We should also accept that under the scrutiny of thousands of critics, in particular during the last 100 years of media technology, their writings have been shown to be flawed, and as a result can’t be seen to be the literal word of God (as many Muslims believe the Qur’an to be) or inspired by God as many Christians believe the Bible to be.  Little wonder, now equipped with knowledge attained from the internet in a world that today relies heavily on scientific proof that the authenticity of the Bible is constantly being challenged and people are increasingly moving away from established religions.

19.   Immaculate Conception, Miracles and the Resurrection defy belief

Circa 2021, we spend our whole life in a world of realities. We know what is required for a woman to conceive and we understand that when a person has died they are not coming back from the dead. While we hear of miracles having been performed, both in the Bible and in order for someone to be recognized as a saint in the Catholic Church, these miracles have generally been difficult to verify:

*      paralysed man walking again after meeting Jesus; and

*      Indian woman with incurable cancer feeling a "blinding light" and fully recovery after praying to Mother Teresa.

We never learn of amazing and verifiable miracles occurring in clear view where, for example, a man who has lost his arm is given a new arm

Based on our own experience and understanding it is difficult therefore to accept immaculate conception, the resurrection and miracles on faith. It is much easier to believe that Jesus was conceived in the usual way and that when he was crucified, he died and his body was buried.

20.   Churches could be seen to be institutions that sell false hope

Most religions have a hierarchy, headed by men who gain respect and power based on their deep understanding of the teachings and the rituals that are part of that particular religion. Many religions have churches and other property, and some, such as the Catholic Church have immense wealth and political power. Many religions have become institutions, like large multinational corporations, with survival, and protection of Brand Name, as key goals.   As evidenced by the publicity in recent times, for example Pennsylvania USA, and Buffalo USA, churches have too often sacrificed victims of abuse, rather than tarnish their reputation.

In the Writer's view, the promise of eternal life or reincarnation has been the source of power for most religions.  If in 2021 with all the knowledge of Evolution (available from the internet) if one accepts there is not life after death for the most intelligent of the animal kingdom, then the obvious conclusion is that religious organizations are defrauding their followers by promising to give them something that will never be delivered, and comfortably taking their cash from the 'collection plates' in the meantime.

21.   If there is an omnipotent force (a God), then Science might help us better understand it in the future

The significance of some of the discoveries being made in areas such as quantum physics (such as light consisting of both particles and waves) well exceeds the Writer's grey matter

Scientists have proven that the -

A)      nearest stars (the Alpha/Proxima Centauri star system) is roughly 4.3 light-years away;

B)      Milky Way galaxy consists of some 300 billion stars in a spiral-shaped conglomerate roughly 100,000 light-years across; and

C)      Universe is expanding at a measurable rate, and this has allowed them to peg the Universe to be about 13.82 billion years old.

Concepts such the distance covered by light in a year (about 6 trillion miles) is also beyond the Writer's comprehension.  However, he is confident that the measurement of the distance to the stars and the estimate of the number of stars in the Milky Way are reasonable because of the quantum and rigor of peer analysis to empirically test initial hypotheses.  Scientific “facts” are constantly being challenged and refined as new techniques are discovered.

It is also possible at some time in the future that we may also come to understand if this is part of a cycle or process that has been going on forever, or is due to an act of creation by an omnipotent intelligence (or other force beyond our current understanding) that some may consider a God, or due to some other dimension of existence that we have not discovered as yet, thereby better understand the powerful Extreme Energy Force that created the Universe and put life of Earth.

22.    If there is a God, does it listen to our needs and wants in prayers, and intervene?  There are so many other humans who struggle to feed their family, that seemingly God does not go to the aid of

On a related issue to immediately above, if future science actually establishes/proves the disciplines of a God/Extreme Energy Force that created the Universe including Earth and creating life on it by formulating the many laws of science that Homo sapiens presently is incapable of understanding, would that God/Extreme Energy Force want to intervene in humans' lives?  The Writer denounces this premise herein, albeit one that is imbedded in most religions, that an omnipotent God would have an interest in the thoughts and deeds of mere humans.

Of the 112 billion circa Homo sapiens that have been born on terra firma, over the last 130,000 years or so, approx. one quarter struggled to feed their family and died from droughts, floods, famine and plagues etc.  Prima facie the asserted God did naught to alleviate their tragic destiny.  The notion that a God/Extreme Energy Force would want to intervene in humans' lives is an realistic expectation.  A human's thoughts/prayers would have as much interest to an omnipotent God, as the thoughts of white ants, bees and mosquitoes would be to humans, if humans had the capacity to read those insects thoughts. 

The Writer believes that an Extreme Energy Force is responsible for life on planet Earth.  And that Homo sapiens is the most intelligent and capable of the animal kingdom, followed by chimpanzees, gorillas, elephants, dolphins etc.  But that Homo sapiens, colloquially referred to as humans, have no more right to, or indeed a need for a life after death than other life forms.  Human had no complaints before they were born, and will have no complaints after their deaths. The powerful Extreme Energy Force that created the Universe and life on Earth determined that life would be finite and engendered an ingenious means to re-create life in future generations, be they humans, elephants, turtles, birds, fish or cockroaches - refer Section 3 above.

23.   Is there are need for a fourth category of 'believers'?

In researching various beliefs about Life on Planet Earth, the below three types of 'believers' dominate writings and journals. None precisely fit the Writer's understanding:

*        Atheists -     Folk that do not believe in a god, rather believe that life merely evolved from The Big Bang, but do not ponder what caused it or the complexity of new born children that grew (over 9 months) from a tiny fertilised egg that affixed to the lining of the uterus - refer Section 3 above.

*        Agnostics -  Folk that hold the view that understanding the creation of the Universe and life on Earth is beyond their mental capacity, incapable of sufficient rational grounds to justify either the belief that a God exists or the belief that no God exists - a person who believes that nothing is known or can be known of the existence or nature of God.

*        Christians – Folk that follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ

Below is an extract from What Does "Agnostic" Mean? by American, Phil Zuckerman, Ph.D.

Agnosticism also entails a profound embracing of existential mystery. As 19th-century British scholar Leslie Stephen expressed, “we are a company of ignorant beings, feeling our way through mists and darkness…dimly discerning light enough for our daily needs, but hopelessly differing whenever we attempt to describe ultimate origin…[and thus] we shall be content to admit openly…that man knows nothing of the Infinite and Absolute.”
Or in the succinctly poetic words of 19th-century American orator 
Robert Ingersoll: “Nobody knows how it is. The human mind is not big enough to answer the questions of origin and destiny.”

The below extracts from Wikipedia indicate that humans that believe that some powerful force, well beyond the power and intelligence of humans, created the Universe and Life on Earth ‘et al’ are called Theists in the sub category of Deism. 

Theism is broadly defined as the belief in the existence of a supreme being or deities.[1][2] 

Classical Deism is the belief that one God exists and it created the world, but that the Creator does/do not alter the original plan for the universe, but presides over it in the form of Providence; however, some classical Deists did believe in divine intervention.[15]

Deism typically rejects supernatural events (such as prophecies, miracles, and divine revelations) prominent in organized religion. Instead, Deism holds that religious beliefs must be founded on human reason and observed features of the natural world, and that these sources reveal the existence of a supreme being as creator.[16

Based upon the limitations of the further above three well-known categories, the Writer more so falls into the second afore-mentioned group called Theists in the sub category of Deism.  But Pragmatist or Realist are more apt descriptions of his beliefs on this vital matter which is why he has deployed the descriptive term Extreme Energy Force, because the word God holds Christian conations/similarities/associations for many Western World Folk.

(The Writer shares something in common with Adolf Hitler.  They were both ‘altar boys’ in the Catholic Church.  But Adolf turned out to be a nasty sod that didn't follow The Ten Commandments.)

PJJ aka BankTeller