Venus Spinning Backwards: The Christians’ Achilles Heel?

It must be admitted that atheists make some good points about why and how a person might arrive at the conclusion that there is no God. Fair enough; reason is a beautiful thing, and we must all respect its power. (Of course, in my last post, Atheists of America Agree: Christianity Makes Eminent Rational Sense!, I proved so conclusively that the Christian view of life is the only one that makes sense that everyone who read and/or commented on that post agreed with it. I expected no less.)

I’m so sure that Christ was God come to earth as man that I am willing to hand the atheists what I think is their final, best bet for making the case that there either is no God at all – or that if there is a God, he’s such a dunderhead that anyone who ignores him will surely be forgiven.

Listen up, atheists: This is your Big Chance. What I am about to tell you is like Achilles stopping on the battlefield, pointing to his heel, and hollering out, “Hey, everyone! Shoot me here! This is where I’m vulnerable! Just aim right here!”

Venus spins backwards.

Oh, like you knew.

You atheists have to act like you know everything, don’t you?

Anyway — since I do know you people want proof of everything — verification that Venus turns the wrong way is here.

Atheist or not, you will, I know, be upset to learn that one of our Key Planets doesn’t even know which way it’s supposed to turn. I must admit that I, too, was shocked to discover this most disorienting of facts.

Aetheist or Christian, we all want to exist in an ordered, dependable universe. A retarded Venusian revolution certainly challenges the assumption that we do.

Challenges it, yes. But wins that challenge? I think not.

I believe that Venus spinning backwards does not prove that God doesn’t exist. As we all know, since time immemorial, Venus has represented love. I think having Venus spin backwards is God’s way of bringing all of humanity together under the one great and universal truth that no matter who you are, where you come from, or what you believe in, love remains an insane thing you can’t predict, control, or feel comfortable with at all.

We can argue about the existence of God until the cows forget how to come home. But surely we must all agree that when it comes to the human emotion of love, we are, and must forever remain, out and out morons.

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About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. John is a pastor ordained by The Progressive Christian Alliance. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. And don't forget to sign up for his mucho awesome monthly newsletter.

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    Venus spins backwards? Blasphemy, I say! Blasphemy! And Pluto is still a planet!

  • Ingrid

    AMEN John love is the great equalizer. It makes us all stupid.

    I'm with Morse how do you just demote a planet? Who does that? Pluto is and forever will be a planet!

  • http://mangaloy.wordpress.com/ mangaloy

    'when it comes to the human emotion of love, we are, and must forever remain, out and out morons.''…..speak for yourself….

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Mangaloy: Sorry. Clearly, you're the Genius of Love.

    Ingrid: Let it go, man. Pluto's not a planet. Now it's just a huge rock with an inferiority complex. We've got to let it go, and move on. Together, we can get through this.

  • http://livinglove.wordpress.com Raeliyah

    Venus isn't the only crazy thing in the solar system. Uranus spins on its side – 98* from perpendicular to its orbital plane.

    Uranus (or Ouranus, "Sky") is the original Greek Father – married to Gaia, who gave birth to the Titans, who gave birth or created everything else.

    So, now, what does that mean? =)

    -Raeliyah, lurker.

    (There's also a really great article about another crazy thing in our solar system – the ratio of Moon to Earth to Sun and solar/lunar eclipses here: Solar Eclipses

  • http://samwrites2.wordpress.com samwrites2

    Since Venus clearly represents females and feminity, it surely follows it is the only planet spinning in the correct direction and Mars, spinning the wrong way, represents males – especially those who won't stop and ask for directions.

    -Sam

  • Dan Cartwright

    What Sam writes may make sense and actually be a biblical concept in that the bible says Eve was deceived, possibly indicating intellectual activity, but Adam bit as soon as she handed him the apple, giving birth to many, many sitcoms.

  • http://ricbooth.wordpress.com ric booth

    I cannot believe I did not know this. Plus, you found out before me! This is such a humbling moment for me. I had heard about Pluto's fall but I never really gave him much of a chance anyways.

  • http://www.tworobs.com Rob Miles

    If the Christian want to believe there is no Allah, fine that is there choice. But they have a big suprise coming to them when they die and stand face to face with Allah.

  • http://www.tworobs.com Rob Miles

    Dan C: in Adams defense, he probably didn't have much blood left in his brain at the time with which to reason properly. That could also explain the whole sitcom thing, to boot.

  • Dan Cartwright

    I am not sure windyblue uttered an actual threat, but merely passionately raised the possibility of a surprise on a 'judgment day' where guess who is the judge. There will be a lot of surprises, I expect, since Jesus told some folks the there will be those who call Him "Lord, Lord" that won't make it through the doors. So athiests won't corner the market on that day, that's for sure!

    Interesting point, Rob!

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    Didn't say it was her threat. It may be from an old silly book, but it's still a threat. Luckily it's baseless.

  • Dan Cartwright

    If it's the 'silly old book' that comes to mind and having read it several times, the silly old book might actually call the surprises, 'promises' and not mere threats. According to THAT book, lack of belief means condemned already, even before crossing death's physical death's door.

    But then again, we might be talking about different silly old books. Grimm's Fairy Tales?

  • Cliverty

    As usual I have a hard to following the way you use your arguments to get to the points you are assuming as the conclusion.

    In the case of the "backward spin" this is a simple case of physics defeating atheist evolutionism. In a homogeneous thermodynamic event where the initial component has a "spin" characteristic all of the spin-off particles share the same direction of spin. So in a "mindless big bang" source event where the "singularity" spins at an incredible rate then explodes — all resulting gass clouds, particles (and as some would have it — galaxies) should have the same spin direction as the parent. They do not.

    This anomaly can be found even in our own sola system. It completely escapes me how you would argue that the UNNEXPECTED event in nature is an argument for "no design, no intelligence at all".

    Just like squared edges and multivector flight paths show "design" and intelligence — so also these "in your face" spin anomalies show that an intelligence is "determining" the outcome rather then just "getting stuff to explode then let the dust settle it".

    Bob

  • breezy

    yeah, what's up with that…Adam knew Eve was eating the wrong thing but did he tell her, "Hey, Eve isn't that the one God said not to eat?" No, he just stood there and watched to make sure she didn't keel over, then he bit too.

    …'windyblue's' posts always make me think of Weird Al's "Amish Paradise" …'I'll be laughing my head off while you're burning in hell"

  • Dan Cartwright

    Who is Richard Feynman?

  • Dan Cartwright

    Did you miss the diffrent alternatives to becoming a crispy critter? Therin lies the difference. Assuming and only assuming, that hell is real, they are very different.Your misplaced sarcasm slip is showing.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Okay, guys, stop. I'm now officially bored to death by this endless back-and-forth. No one's going anywhere here, so … ceasing seems wise.

  • Dan Cartwright

    I thought we were getting along famously today, John. I don't know abour the other guys, I haven't had a mean-spirited bone in my body today and meant nothing as intentional criticism. Where had you intended us to go?

  • Dan Cartwright

    Venus represents love? Sounds like it might be a man concocted myth. I’m a mythicist and I recognize things immediately! I think the changes in the planet Venus’ (i read the link) is because of the presence os a transmission. But is it a manual (on the column or on the floor) or automatic. Maybe is has an on dash push button that some of us old guys remember. That brings up the question of who operates the gear shift?

  • http://livinglove.wordpress.com Raeliyah

    Re: #22, Daniel:

    What soap opera are you talking about? Mostly I just copied from NASA and Wikipedia to showcase another weirdity of our Solar System.

  • http://samwrites2.wordpress.com samwrites2

    This just in (okay, as of Feb. 27) from National Geographic Kids about a new mnemonic to help you remember the order of the planets, and "planetoids" in the solar system.

    A 10-year-old came up with "My very exciting magic carpet just sailed under nine palace elephants."

    "Prizes:

    The winner’s name and slogan will be featured in an upcoming National Geographic book about the planets, 11 Planets: A New View of the Solar System by David Aguilar, and the winner will receive a tote bag filled with books, a National Geographic tee shirt and hat, toys and other merchandise! Schools across the country will use the winning slogan to teach kids about the solar system!"

    Not only that, but another news source says the mneumonic will be put to music – by Lisa Loeb – to help those kids! And every news source is using exclamation points because we're all so excited about the solar system!

    John's tapped into something! Astronomy is so much fun!

    And the planets and planetoids are….Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Ceres, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Eris! Ceres, Pluto and Eris are considered dwarf planets!

  • born4battle

    "For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day." John 6:37-39

    Jeff,

    I don't think the human mind can come close to comprehending the totality of God's love. As to Jesus wanting to save the world from itself, it is even more specific in one of Paul's letter to the Corinthians:

    "Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep (died). 1 Cor 15:1-6

  • Dan Cartwright

    Whoops, that was “might be” instead of ‘be a biblical concept’.

  • http://wineymomma.wordpress.com wineymomma

    I am so happy that we have found the humor. And the love.

  • frank

    Hmm what is this post about ?

    Maybe mixing up an interesting physical phenomenon with the debate on the existence of God plus astrological/mythical analogies and a human feeling is funny for some people. Not my sense of humor but anyway….

    I want to say something about this quote:

    “Aetheist or Christian, we all want to exist in an ordered, dependable universe”

    Uhmmm no we don’t.

    Every well educated Atheist or Christian or Jew or Muslim etc. knows

    that our universe is BOTH chaotic and regular. Actually it is the interplay between chaos and order which brings up all the complex structures we see around us including ourselves.

    And to those of the commenters here who cannot grasp the fact

    that the universe is capable of producing higly complex structures by itself (without help from fairies) I just want to say, what makes you so confident in deciding what this huge , beautiful, mysterious system of which we are tiny parts can do or cannot ?

  • windyblue

    If the atheist want to believe there is no God, fine that is there choice. But they have a big suprise coming to them when they die and stand face to face with God.

    Our minds as human beings are to small to figure out how God could come to earth as a human being. When God is a spirit.

    We humans are always trying to figure out things, we have to have an answer to everything, We do not accept things on a matter of faith.

    Sometimes believing is the things you cannot see.

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    Windyblue, try not to ruin a lighthearted post with threats.

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    “According to THAT book, lack of belief means condemned already, even before crossing death’s physical death’s door.”

    Which is very convenient if you’re writing a book with the intent of getting people to believe it.

    Wonder if the Koran does the same thing? Hmmmm…

  • http://thestateofamerica.wordpress.com/ Daniel

    Nasa is producing soap operas–cool! I'm still waiting for a showing of the other 90% of the universe.

  • http://thestateofamerica.wordpress.com/ Daniel

    Raeliyah did you Create that cosmic soap opera?

  • Dan Cartwright

    TheIslamic Hell or Jahannum was an imagination of Prophet Mohammed used primarily for two reasons:

    To have a torture chamber for all the kafirs (unbelievers and people of other religions).

    To terrorize people into accepting Islam.

    Although the earlier mentined silly old book contains the concept of hell, the remedy is a free gift of grace (unmerited favor) by belief in an atoning sacrifice, while the Koran only offers as a torture chamber preventative measure a system of sufficient good works, unless of course one is martyred for the ’cause’ and one’s ticket to paradise and your choice of virgins or whatever is assured.

    Which current male sitcom figure most resembles Eve’s Adam? I don’t watch many sitcoms so have no idea.

  • breezy

    John,

    Is there a support group for Plutonics (those unable to get past Pluto’s declassification)? I love the song ‘The Planets Revolve Around The Sun’ – been singing it to my kids for over 20 years….what am I gonna do with the lyrics:

    ‘Jupiter, Saturn next in line…Uranus, Neptune and Pluto make nine’,

    I’m still so devastated…

  • Brad

    “But surely we must all agree that when it comes to the human emotion of love, we are, and must forever remain, out and out morons.”

    $latex to $

    “According to THAT book, lack of belief means condemned already, even before crossing death’s physical death’s door.”

    Advertisement on the side of this page: “I’m OK–You’re Not: The Message We’re Sending Nonbelievers and Why We Should Stop” by John Shore

    “We humans are always trying to figure out things, we have to have an answer to everything, [...]”

    Richard Feynman sez:

    “I can live with doubt and uncertainty and not knowing. I think it is much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers that might be wrong.”

    &

    “If we will only allow that, as we progress, we remain unsure, we will leave opportunities for alternatives. We will not become enthusiastic for the fact, the knowledge, the absolute truth of the day, but remain always uncertain… In order to make progress, one must leave the door to the unknown ajar.”

    &

    “…far more marvelous is the truth than any artists of the past imagined it. Why do the poets of the present not speak of it? What men are poets who can speak of Jupiter if he were a man, but if he is an immense spinning sphere of methane and ammonia must be silent?”

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    “To have a torture chamber for all the kafirs (unbelievers and people of other religions).

    To terrorize people into accepting Islam. ”

    This is different from some peoples’ idea of christianity how?

    Believe in Jesus or go to hell. Believe in Allah or go to hell.

    Yeah, those are nothing alike.

  • gothiquefae

    Just a short note the Koran doesn't actually teach the jihad as suicide bombings and martyrdom, in fact Mohammed said that the greatest jihad was within. So the whole virgins thing for a Islam version heaven for a martyr doesn't apply because it isn't in their belief system. At all.

    G.

  • http://www.jointheharvest.net/about/jeff Jeff

    Jonathan Coulton gives great perspective to the Pluto dispute at http://www.jonathancoulton.com/songdetails/I'm%20Your%20Moon. It is lovely, how Pluto and its moon orbit each other.

    As for the reason for the post… Jesus Christ’s main goal was to save the world from itself by shedding His divinity, taking on human form and our “mortal cares” to be the offering of offerings in our stead. Such love (the greater has no man kind) is so different than what we humans demonstrate that the Venus/love thing makes a lot of sense, if, of course, you know the real Jesus. God bless you all.

  • gothiquefae

    Oh and a random planet spinning backwards, although interesting, doesn’t prove anything.

  • Brad

    gothiquefae, Venus is not random! It is the planet of love!

    (Seriously, this thread is meant to be a joke, to promote civility in the face of differences, not make any scientific point.)

    Comments always start out relevant to a post, but will diverge to an end which entirely depends on the blog’s audience. Blogging axiom.

  • http://www.barethoughts.com/blog Tam

    Venus spinning backwards is an evil plot of the Go’uld or maybe the Ori. Their goal goal – mess with people’s minds. They are also responsible for the Pluto situation.

    Yes, i watch way too much Sci-Fi.

  • BrassServices

    If everyone wants to believe that there is no Flying Spaghetti Monster, then ya'll will not be shocked when you're dead and cease to exist.

    It's precisely this type of goo-goo eyed crap that passes for the dumbed-down public education most people receive.

  • Dan Cartwright

    Do you have a specific point other than to tell us you laugh a lot at comments here including those meant to be serious?

  • born4battle

    “Among most Westerners, the term “Jihad” (“struggle” in Arabic) often brings up images of Muslim terrorists killing people who disagree with them. Jihad is an emotionally charged word that is heralded by the Western news media in descriptions of Middle East activities. People need not wait long to hear the term used during nightly news and see the affects of present day Islamic struggles in vivid pictures of destruction beamed to our televisions. But is this a fair assessment of the Muslim community as a whole?

    Jihad has been interpreted by Muslims in different ways. The Muslim sect of the Kharijites has elevated Jihad to one of the Five Pillars of Islam — making it Six Pillars. This kind of belief is seen in the extremist Muslim groups we call terrorists. They use the concept of Jihad as a justification for killing anyone who isn’t a Muslim. However, most Muslims disagree with this extremist position of some Muslims and advocate peace. These Muslims view Jihad as a spiritual struggle against evil in a metaphorical sense.1

    For the most part, there is the Greater and Lesser Jihad. The Greater Jihad is the internal spiritual struggle of the Muslim toward submission to Allah. The Lesser Jihad is Holy War against non-Muslims based on principle of belief. It is this latter that has caused the most concern among Westerners. Is that concern warranted? Many think so.”

    Islamic scholar Jamal Badawi, chairman of the Islamic Information Foundation in Halifax, insists that a jihad is `permitted only in self-defense or against tyranny and oppression–not as a tool to promote Islam.” But, experts added, the ancient Islamic empires were built as much by force as by persuasion. Islam’s founder, Mohammed, frequently used force, or the threat of it, to unify the nomadic tribes of the Arabian peninsula. The caliphs, who succeeded Mohammed as leaders of the Arab world, successfully took up arms against the Christian Byzantine Empire in Egypt and the Holy Land. By the end of the ninth century, Arabian armies had extended Islamic power from Spain to the borders of India.2

    Anyone who has studied Islamic history must surely notice how frequently the Muslims were involved in battle after battle. Within 200 years after its inception, Islam had spread through a huge geographical area and many converts were made by the sword.

    What does the Qur’an say about Jihad?

    The Qur’an is the single most important authority in all of Islam. It is the scripture given from Allah through the angel Gabriel. Does the Qur’an teach Jihad? Absolutely yes. As you will see in the following quotes from the Qur’an, Holy War is definitely taught and encouraged.

    “Truly Allah loves those who fight in His Cause in battle array, as if they were a solid cemented structure,” (Surah 61:4).

    “Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress limits…191And slay them wherever ye catch them. and turn them out from where they have turned you out; for persecution is worse than slaughter; But fight them not at the sacred Mosque unless they (first) fight you there; But if they fight you, slay them. Such is the reward of those who reject faith. 192 But if they cease, Allah is oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. 193And fight them on until there is no more persecution. And the religion becomes Allah’s. But if they cease, Let there be no hostility except to those who practice oppression” (The Qur’an, Surah 2:190-193).

    “O ye who believe! what is the matter with you, that, when ye are asked to go forth in the cause of Allah, ye cling heavily to the earth? Do ye prefer the life of this world to the Hereafter? But little is the comfort of this life, as compared with the Hereafter. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty, and put others in your place; but Him ye would not harm in the least. For Allah hath power over all things. Unless ye go forth, He will punish you with a grievous penalty, and put others in your place; but Him ye would not harm in the least. For Allah hath power over all things,” (Surah 9:38-39).

    See also Surah 4:74-76; 61:10-12.

    What does the Hadith say about Jihad?

    The Hadith are the recorded sayings and deeds of the Prophet Muhammad. It is second in authority only to the Qur’an and is often used to clarify things not specified in the Qur’an. What did Muhammad say about Jihad as recorded in the Hadith?

    “The Prophet said, “The person who participates in (Holy battles) in Allah’s cause and nothing compels him to do so except belief in Allah and His Apostles, will be recompensed by Allah either with a reward, or booty (if he survives) or will be admitted to Paradise (if he is killed in the battle as a martyr). Had I not found it difficult for my followers, then I would not remain behind any sariya going for Jihad and I would have loved to be martyred in Allah’s cause and then made alive, and then martyred and then made alive, and then again martyred in His cause.”Volume 1, Book 2, Number 35, Narrated Abu Huraira

    “Allah’s Apostle said, “A pious slave gets a double reward.” Abu Huraira added: By Him in Whose Hands my soul is but for Jihad (i.e. holy battles), Hajj, and my duty to serve my mother, I would have loved to die as a slave. Volume 3, Book 46, Number 724: Narrated Abu Huraira

    “Allah’s Apostle said, “Allah guarantees (the person who carries out Jihad in His Cause and nothing compelled him to go out but Jihad in His Cause and the belief in His Word) that He will either admit him into Paradise (Martyrdom) or return him with reward or booty he has earned to his residence from where he went out.” Volume 9, Book 93, Number 555: Narrated Abu Huraira.

    Obviously Muhammad taught that Holy War was an acceptable and good thing to do. To clarify, he even stated that if a Muslim were to die in battle, fighting for the cause of Allah, that he would be guaranteed to go to Paradise.

  • Billy B

    I'm one day closer to the answer.

  • gothiquefae

    I agree that the Go’uld could have something to do with this phenomena Lol.

    And don't worry I realize that this is meant to be humourous, I was attempting to spark a conversation and it worked :)

    Like you said Blogging axiom, it's fun to see what happens. Oh and one last note I would like to extend a very real "thank you" to born4battle on your response to me, I very much appreciate you helping me add to my understanding of a different culture and religion.

    Gothique

  • http://thestateofamerica.wordpress.com/ Daniel

    What's the question? Is it does the spaghetti monster still flies when we're all dead or whether jihad is better spelled backwards=hadij, which by the way reminds of the serial thriller Gun Smoke, Dodge city and the wild, wild west, or is it whether we are morons because we love to argue at the same venus seeks to confuse.

  • born4battle

    gothiquefae,

    I'm glad I could be of service to you! I probably could have just spoke of the Irqi Muslimg I meet during a 15 month tour over there, but I think finding something more tangible would be better. During my time over there (training the New Iraqi Army) we used English speaking Iraqis whoe were hired locally and we had a sizable number of U.S. citizens from the Detroit area who left Iraq to settle in the states. I met some really fine men and we even had some very good discussions concerning the difference between Islam and Christianity. They hate what is happenning in the 'name of Allah', as did the soldiers we trained. We had some who turned up at our location to be part of the new army even after being hit in a bombing of the recruiting station in Baghdad. It was an incredible experience!

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  • http://cometothewell.wordpress.com dsrtrosy

    Good for a laugh (as always) as are the responses (again, as always). The people not trying to be funny are the ones that drop me on the floor. Sheesh. Grow a sense of humor already! Or wait…don’t. Keep posting here and proving John right–that we are out and out morons.

    Brad: good point about the book! Although, Feynman? Really? Alright, in quotable form I can take him, but by and large he’s not my favorite anti-God writer/thinker on the planet. He seems to contradict himself too often…as your chosen quotes indicate. But I have to say that as much of my “faith” is tied up in doubt as it is in belief. It is not a purely atheistic point of view.

  • Brad

    "Although, Feynman? Really? [..] He seems to contradict himself too often…as your chosen quotes indicate."

    Just out of curiosity, do you think the contradiction is here: "We will not become enthusiastic for the fact, the knowledge, the absolute truth of the day [...]" ? This merely means we will not care about thinking we have the right answer as much as truly having it when we arrive at it.

    Feynman was an atheist, but are you sure he was anti-God? I haven't heard that about him. He was most famous for his physics lectures, especially quantum electrodynamics, so I can forgive him for not having the sharpest points against theism in the toolbox.

    "But I have to say that as much of my “faith” is tied up in doubt as it is in belief."

    I didn't understand that, but as long as I'm continuing to role-play on this post, here's another from my automated atheist-quote generator:

    "I agree that faith is essential to success in life (success of any sort) but I do not accept your definition of faith, i.e. belief in life after death. In my view, all that is necessary for faith is the belief that by doing our best we shall come nearer to success and that success in our aims (the improvement of the lot of mankind, present and future) is worth attaining. Anyone able to believe in all that religion implies obviously must have such faith, but I maintain that faith in this world is perfectly possible without faith in another world."

    - Rosalind Franklin, letter to her father

    (Note that Rosalind basically set Watson up for modeling DNA, but he gave her no credit.)

  • Rob

    Venus turning "backwards", (presumptive that it is not turning forward and maybe everything else is actually backwards), has no bearing one way or the other for an argument that there is or is not a God. In my mind, (what little is there) we all WILL find out this answer in due time whether you are a believer or not.

  • Dan Cartwright

    This comment has application in this blog and a couple of previous blogs and then I'll just probably shut up.

    It's been said that perception is reality. I think that is a valid maxim in the world of blogging. We see words and perceive emotion behind them. At times, merely because of terms and vocabulary used, or literary tone, those perceptions are real in actuality, not merely in the imagination of the 'receptor'. When the subject is 'God' emotions run high. I am passionate about what I believe, and I will defend my faith. We believers are called to defend our faith and to proclaim it, but it is foolish for us to try and 'persuade' because that is God's business. We believers are rightly reminded that faith is to be demonstrated, not pounded down anyone's throat. That is the purpose of this comment, to tell you about a demonstration of faith.

    I have friend named Georg (that's right – no 'G'). He has days to live due to a battle with brain cancer. I met Georg years ago when we were both attending the same language course at a military base in New England. I found myself discussing matters of faith with someone in the course (not Georg) who was not a Christian, but not atheistic either. Georg walked over to where I was having an early breakfast in a dining facility and told me that he had heard the discussions about God and it stirred his heart. He became a man of faith and will die a man of faith. How do I know that in the midst of pain and suffering he has not denied his God?

    I receive email updates from His wife Wendy. Yesterday's update was that Georg has just days left. When, months ago, the diagnosis was certain and the effects of having brain cancer kicked in, Georg's comment to Wendy was that he hoped there would be no turning away from, or anger at God for what he (Georg) was going through. He was able to see his daughter married and during lucid moments they have done some video so Georg could speak to the grandchildren he would never be able to see in person.

    In the hospital, when he still could, Georg had a habit of either praying with, or after they left, for those who came to visit. He would pray that God would bless THEM in the middle of his own suffering. As things have worsened for him – friends and family have consistently cared for him and tended to his needs. When he could only speak a few words at a time to those taking care of him, his most frequent words, spoken through pain, have been "God bless you."

    That is a demonstration of faith! How can it NOT be real? Is that sort of faith a delusion or myth? I think not. The strength of Georg's faith amazes me – and shames me.

    I just wanted to share that.

  • http://www.youtube.com/morsec0de Morse

    Dan,

    No one is saying that faith isn't real. The question is whether or not the object of that faith is real.

    If your friend has faith and it is helping him get through this time, then I don't imagine anyone would wish to take it away from him.

  • Dan Cartwright

    Understood.

  • Brad

    “Tell me one last thing,” said Harry. “Is this real? Or has this been happening inside my head?”

    “Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” [-Dumbledore]

  • Terri

    Who said it backwards? Just because it does not spin the way this planet or any other planet, means in any way that it is going backwards according to Gods. It is however spining in the direction God chose for it to spin according to His laws in His universe. It just proves to me that I truly do have an awesome God and that none of us know everything.

  • Cliverty

    Terri -

    As noted previously in the thread – this is a simple matter of physics and the fact that all byproducts of an initial thermodynamic event that has a spin characteristic will share the SAME spin characteristic.

    I.e. If a spinning bottle expodes the shards coming out of it will have the same direction of spin. The fact that some of the planets have opposite spin – and some galaxies have opposite spin – seems to define what an atheist would “expect” from the laws of “uniformitarianism” —

    Bob


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