The “World’s Most Dangerous Church”? If You Go There, You’re Guaranteed to Get High

For most people in the West, going to church is preceded by getting into their car and rolling up to their preferred house of God.

It’s a little different at this church in Ethiopia. Going to it means defying death.

The church, which is dug into the side of a cliff, sits roughly 2,500 feet above the ground. To access it, you must scale a portion of the cliff, walk on numerous narrow bridges and finally hop skip and jump your way into the entrance.

Like so:

[Read more…]

Pedi-Cure? Virus-Eating Onions On Your Feet Fight Illness, Cleanse Your Blood! (Also, I Have a Bridge To Sell You)

Look at that picture. No, that’s not a nasty foot infection. It’s kind of the opposite: a slice of healing red onion. Behold the lowly onion’s amazing natural powers, says Andreea Zoia, a popular fashion model and actress from Dubai. Almost as soon as Ms. Zoia placed the onion on her sole and held it in place with her sock, I started feeling [Read More…]

Christian News Suggests That Teaching Bible Classes in Public Schools Might Be OK… Because It’s a Tradition

Earlier this month, Friendly Atheist featured a story about several public elementary schools in North Carolina that are teaching Bible classes — and about the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s insistence that the school district puts a stop to that.

I just read the remarkable take on that situation over at Christian News. The publication first lays out the facts fairly. But then, three-fourths of the way into the article, author Heather Clark veers into this:

The first textbook used in the American colonies even before the nation’s founding, “The New England Primer,” was largely focused on the Scriptures, and was stated to be popular in colonial schools for at least one hundred years. It used mostly the King James Bible as reference, and spoke much about sin, salvation and proper behavior.

[Read more…]

Police In Bangladesh Say They Thwarted an Islamist Murder Plot Against an Atheist School Teacher

Via Agence France-Presse comes the bad news that the fundies of Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) — whose crowning achievement came a decade ago when they set off roughly 400 bombs in one day — are staging a comeback.

But there’s also good news: Bangladesh police prevented JMB members from murdering an atheist school teacher.

Bangladesh police said Thursday they had foiled an attempt by suspected Islamic militants to murder an “atheist” school teacher in the capital, amid concerns a banned hardline outfit is reforming. Police fired on the militants from banned group Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh whom officers had stopped by chance on Wednesday near the teacher’s home in north Dhaka, a local police chief said.

By chance? Not reassuring. Still, thank heavens Allah the Most Gracious and Merciful had the intended victim’s back. A bit ironic, that.

[Read more…]

Putting the Sin in Synagogue: DC Rabbi Accused of Spying on Congregants via a Hidden Camera in Temple’s Showers

You know what might tip a reasonable person off to something untoward going on in the mikvah, the ritual bath that orthodox Jewish women (and men) take to purify themselves? I dunno, maybe something like this:

Emma Shulevitz remembers seeing a clock radio in the mikvah. The rabbi told her not to put clothes in front of it.

For some reason, Shulevitz thought nothing of it at the time. But the rabbi, Barry Freundel of Washington D.C., was arrested this week when it was finally discovered that the clock radio — reported to be, appropriately, a Sony “Dream Machine” — contains a small camera. The pervy cleric had been digitally ogling unsuspecting women for years.

A rabbi at a prominent Washington, D.C., synagogue faces voyeurism charges following accusations he secretly recorded women in the changing and shower area there.

[Read more…]