Awakening to Reason & Rejecting Blind Faith – How I benefited from engaging the Flat Earth issue

[Conspiracy theories are like potato chips, it’s hard to eat just one]

INTRODUCTION

I will express some preliminary thoughts. Then explain how the flat earth movement led me to take a firm stand that the Bible is not the Word of God, but instead the word of man. And finally, I provide further elaboration and reflection on the religious and philosophical ideas expressed, the first part being where I encourage people as individuals to develop their own unique life operating systems (worldviews) and stick by them as best they can and carefully modify them as they learn more with time, but to be especially careful not to get swept away by the many snake oil salesmen of our day.

PRELIMINARY THOUGHTS

It has taken me a lifetime to get out from under the control and influence that evangelical Christianity had over me having been raised in it and intensifying my practice of it subsequent to that. But I feel like I am finally unraveling aspects of it in the last year or so (2017-2018) especially. At this point in my life I consider myself a Christian Universalist but also a religious pluralist. I no longer consider the Bible the Word of God, but instead the word of man. Much (but not all) of Christian theology takes the Bible (again word of man in my opinion) too literally and seriously to the point that you often end up with a concept of God that is over defined and self contradictory. Process theologian Dr. David Ray Griffin has written a book “God Exists But Gawd Does Not” where the term Gawd is used to differentiate the over defined concept of God from more reasonable, logical, and believable concepts of God, such as what process philosophy and theology suggests. With respect to those definitions, I could say that I am an atheist with respect to the Gawd concept of God. And this means that in many ways I feel I have more in common with the critical thinking atheists than I do with mainstream evangelical Christians. I also no longer feel like I have to get hung up on having an answer for everything. The further back in time you go the more uncertainty there is in understanding what took place and how everything came to be as we find it today in our lives on the earth. This is true no matter what view you hold. No one can really prove their view to be true. But the views that include more miraculous all powerful acts of God tend to be less believable in my view, because if you really view God this way, then you can pretty much believe just about anything. If there is anything you cannot explain, you can always just say that God did it. This is why I now lean more towards the scientific views of the age of the Universe and Earth and Evolution, not thinking that this necessarily removes God from the picture, but that perhaps this was the way that God could do it and chose to do it. I would like to see and participate in dialog between atheists and theists for the much common ground that I believe will be found, and they can also help each other improve their respective positions. Some may change their views from one way or the other, and even back again and so forth any number of times. I was reminded of a book that I read some years ago after hearing the author give a talk on the subject at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Sunnyvale, “Bridging the God Gap, Finding Common Ground Among Believers, Atheists and Agnostics,” by Dr. Roger Christan Schriner. So I have just gotten another copy of his book and am starting to read it again. He also has a blog on the subject at https://theistsandatheists.wordpress.com/

MY AWAKENING TO REASON & STRONGER REJECTION OF BLIND FAITH THANKS TO FLAT EARTH MOVEMENT

A year or so ago (2017) some of the conspiracy stuff I was listening to and entertaining the ideas of on Youtube were from devout Christian types (of the very narrow minded exclusivist type who also usually believe in hell as eternal (never ending) conscious torment) and within this there were some espousing flat earth theories based in large part on their literal interpretation of the Bible. And once I started delving seriously into the flat earth stuff from the standpoint of scientific evidence, and realizing how wrong they were, it also pushed me in the direction of drawing the line more precisely on what I was willing to entertain from a religious faith standpoint from that point going forward.

So whereas in the past if one was of a devout religious faith (especially Christian as I can relate more to that based on my background) and also speaking truth about much conspiracy related stuff, I would tend to give them a free pass and a thumbs up on the religious stuff without too much thought. But now I have concluded that more often than not there are flaws in their religious thinking that is now a red flag to me. I am not saying these are bad people, and I am still honoring and respecting them for their views and goodness of heart that resonates with me. But I feel I need to speak out and enter the dialog on areas where I now think they need to be questioned and challenged.

There are multiple examples I could give, that is, different people and authors, but I was just reminded of one recently when one of his books came up on Amazon as I was browsing. So I will use him. Just understand I am not singling him out. I am just using him as an example. The author is Edward Hendrie. So I read quite a few of this guy’s conspiracy related books years ago and thought they were pretty good. But I have now seen how he came out with a book in 2016 advocating flat earth truth.

And he is not the only devout truth seeking Christian student of conspiracy theories who has come out strongly taking this stand in favor of the earth being flat. There are many more. So about a year ago when I really started seriously digging into the flat earth arguments and realizing their claims could be soundly refuted, and spherical earth theory could be pretty easily confirmed in a variety of ways with measurements and experiments that ordinary people could conduct, that’s when I just had to draw the line. But the flat earth stuff led me to tighten up my thinking in other ways that I had previously avoided taking a stand on.

So I have changed my mind and now I am firm in my conviction that sacred writings like the Bible and those of other faiths are the writings of man, possibly reflecting man’s thinking about how he sees himself and God, and on that basis possibly having some information of value. But when man comes to believe and maintain that the Bible (as an example) is the inerrant Word of God, then this can and has led to a lot of problems for the human race, in my view.

And I have found that there are many people who were once very religious even to the point of being scholars and religious leaders, and eventually they just could not accept the dogma of their belief systems anymore. From these have come many of the great scholars and critics of fundamentalist religion.

Some of these people call themselves or identify as atheists, some agnostics, and some as progressives or religious pluralists. Where I am now in my life I have a lot more in common in my beliefs and viewpoint with these people than I do with the majority of the Christians in the United States, the fundamentalist Christian Zionist types who are likely supporters of CUFI. But there is a relatively small fraction of fundamentalist Christian types who are also students of conspiracy theories, and a good portion of these may be wise to the Jewish Question so are not Zionists, but their exclusivist Christian faith and belief in much end times Bible prophecy still remaining to be fulfilled in the future, taints the soundness of many of their other views, in my opinion, so I really have to be careful listening to these people in deciding the validity of everything they say.

Another viewpoint I have heard from these fundamentalist Christian conspiracy types who believe in much Bible prophecy to be fulfilled in the future, is that they definitely view Islam as being an evil anti-God religion, and it figures prominently in their views of Bible prophecy. It is amazing to consider that there are fundamentalist Jews, Muslims, and Christians, who all have their own end times God given prophesies that they take to be literally true. I no longer consider any of this to be valid or worthy of serious consideration as actual true prophecy, except to recognize that there are many influential religious leaders and believers in this stuff and at least two if not all three of these religions mentioned have significant influence on the leadership of nations with nuclear weapons, and if that is not enough to scare the living shit out of you, I don’t know what is. It is a recipe for world destruction and disaster, self fulfilling prophecies.

But what I have come to view as the poison pill in much of Christianity, is the turn or burn gospel, the belief in hell as eternal conscious torment. The turn or burn gospel is a sort of trauma based mind control method for inducting people into the faith. Do a google image search on “god loves you but will torture you in hell.” There are a lot of good ones, but I like the one where there is this guy with a smile on his face and a white beard (God) who says, “Worship Me or I will torture you forever. Have a nice day. Love, God.” So I came under this system of “trauma based mind control” for most of my life, but am now, at age 62, finally becoming free of it, and for good, and for good (doubled intentionally for two senses of good).

So I have already been burned (pun not intended) by this. I will not allow myself to be burned by this same thing again. So if (for example) a devout Muslim told me that if I did not convert to Islam, that I would go to hell and be punished by God forever, I would tell them that I have already been through this with Christianity, so I won’t fall for this type of fear based manipulation again. I don’t believe in God’s never ending torture chamber any more.

So when I see students of conspiracy theories who also have strong exclusivist religious faiths, and they are speaking out about the evils of atheism etc., I really feel that they are misguided and are just being manipulated into unfairly demonizing others, many of whom could actually be of much common interests for the well being of humankind.

This does not mean that all atheists are good people. But you cannot say this about any group of people. For example, can you say that all Christians are good people? Of course not.

Are there any atheists for 9/11 truth and if so how many? Does anybody know the answers? Also, how many different flavors of atheism are there? How many different nuanced positions do atheists take?

In my view now, many atheists are simply expressing their rejection of the over defined Gawd they were deceived into believing in, or the concept of God that is so loudly promulgated from fundamentalist evangelical Christians and possibly other fundamentalist religions that I am less familiar with. I really believe very strongly that people need to be and should be true to themselves and others as much as they can. I realize this is not always easy, because the exclusivist belief systems shun and retaliate against those who decide to leave them. If a person who was a Christian or Muslim or Anything decides that they are now an atheist, they should be honored and respected for that, for their right to make up their own mind on this. It is often hard for atheists to come out of the closet. Did you realize that? Some continue to go to church or whatever just to keep their family and friends happy. As I am just now starting to re-read Dr. Schriner’s book, I see he quotes two old definitions of “atheist” from respected dictionaries. “A godless person; one who lives immorally as if disbelieving in God.” Webster’s New International Dictionary, Second Edition, Unabridged. “One who practically denies the existence of a God by disregard of moral obligation to him; a godless man.” Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition, Volume One

I have recently re-read the books by Dr. Darrel Ray, The God Virus, and Sex and God, and have found them very helpful to me. He has a very solid Christian background, education, and experience, and yet he identifies as an atheist now. To me he comes across as a deeply spiritual, caring, and loving human being. To me, the fact that he identifies as an atheist means about as much as someone telling me they use Linux as their computer operating system rather than Windows or MacOS.

FURTHER ELABORATIONS ON SOME OF THESE IDEAS

BEST TO DEVELOP YOUR OWN OPERATING SYSTEM FOR YOUR LIFE, WORLDVIEW, PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE

Regardless of how many organized religions, movements, philosophies, rules to live by, cultures, groups, etc. that there are, every individual is responsible for managing this for themselves. Some latch onto exclusivist narrow minded groups and let those groups do a lot of the thinking for them. I have done this myself a lot in the past, and I have learned from it so that I try to avoid this approach as much as I can in the remainder of my life. So I really think that people should develop their own rules for perceiving and analyzing information, perhaps even do this in writing from time to time, and try to stick to their own rules as best they can, so as to avoid letting themselves get carried away by those who seem to be very knowledgeable and offer a good sales pitch presentation of their views encouraging people to jump on their bandwagon.

THE BIBLE IS THE WORD OF MAN

Much of this I have already mentioned, but here it is expanded a little bit. I have come to a very significant change of thinking on something over the last year or so that will have a significant impact on how I approach and live the rest of my life. I no longer believe that the Bible is the Word of God, nor do I believe that there are any other holy writings or scriptures that are such. I believe that holy writings are the words of man, where man may be writing about his views about God, and man may even think that he is inspired by God and that God is speaking through him. But this is just man’s nature to pretend and exaggerate his own importance. And the ruling elite perhaps write these scriptures as a means of organizing those under them in some kind of a cohesive force, where the lower followers may actually believe that their leaders really are speaking for God. And since this seems to work so well, this is a part of how religions and movements work.

MYTHS HAVE A PLACE BUT NOT AS LITERAL TRUTH

I don’t see a problem with calling these things myths, like for example, the founding myths of a religion or culture. Like the creation myths of the Bible, Adam and Eve, the Garden of Eden, etc. The myths are not so much expressing literal truths but deeper truths. If you accept the myths as 100% literal truths you can end up getting something like common evangelical Christianity, which has a lot of absurdities and inconsistencies. And creative atheists have developed a lot of very pointed and hilarious (in my opinion) material just based on ridiculing and making fun of these views. Just do a Youtube search for “kissing hank’s arse” or “if man obeyed god” for a couple I discovered for the first time not too long ago. Be warned. Many will find these offensive. And yet they are both expressing very logical arguments making fun of fundamentalist religion. I found these to be hilarious. I almost died laughing on the second one. In fact I wrote a comment, “In the day that thou watcheth the forbidden youtube video, dying, thou shalt surely die of laughter.” And there is even an entire version of the Bible based on making fun of it, called The Skeptic’s Annotated Bible, which you can get online or in a very high quality leather bound print edition.

TYPICAL EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN SALVATION THEORY

I was raised in and I once believed in the common Christian evangelical belief system where one must accept Jesus Christ as their sin bearing savior in this life in order to be saved from going to hell after one’s life on this earth is over, a place of never ending torment and suffering from which there is no possible escape, and even God himself could not get you out of hell. I no longer believe this. I have come to the conclusion that this is a deeply flawed belief system on many levels. Much can be said about this, and I have dealt with this in more detail in some of my other blog posts. Even though I was raised in fundamentalist Christianity, when I really went off the deep end and swallowed the whole thing hook line and sinker as a senior in high school in 1974 with a troubled life, the initial appeal was the idea that if you had accepted Jesus Christ as your savior as a little kid, and then later you got off on the wrong track into much sin and died suddenly, you would still go to heaven, and you might actually be surprised that you ended up in heaven. But the flip side of this evangelical Christian approach to salvation theory is that it seems to suggest that there will actually be a lot of good people going to hell. Have you ever heard of this one? It is quite common.

A UNIQUE EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN SALVATION THEORY THOUGHT EXPERIMENT

WHAT IF A ZIONIST U.S. ISRAELI DUAL CITIZEN NEOCON 9/11 FALSE FLAG CONSPIRATOR GOT SAVED?

Let me illustrate with a unique example. Take any one or more of the many Zionist U.S. Israeli dual citizens in the highest echelons of U.S. power who were conspirators in the false flag attack of 9/11. Suppose one of these individuals got exposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ through the Jews for Jesus ministry and the Holy Spirit convicted them of their terrible sins related to the 9/11 false flag attacks and their need of a savior, so that they wept profusely in repentance of their sins and accepted Jesus Christ as their personal sin bearing savior. This individual would then have a guaranteed place in heaven. But suppose there were a simple Jewish grandmother who was faithful to God in the way that she was taught in her upbringing and strove to be as good a person as she could be and she never ever even thought of planning or executing a false flag operation, in fact she did not even know what that was, but she was never convicted of her sin by the Holy Spirit and her need of a savior, so she died without accepting Jesus Christ, so she would go to hell forever, torment and suffering without end and no possibility of escape. Doesn’t this seem absurd? But this is what basic evangelical Christian doctrine actually teaches.

[I am thinking of something I loosely quoted in a previous blog post, where I remembered hearing the dogmatic evangelical Bible teacher say something like, “It is better to be mentally retarded and go to heaven than a genius and go to hell.” This statement was made in conjunction with expressing the view that a mentally retarded person would automatically go to heaven because due to their impairment God would not hold them responsible for making a decision to accept Jesus Christ as their savior. To these evangelical dogmatic Bible teachers and believers nothing is more important than eternal salvation. So I just thought of something similar to this on my own. I admit I probably first thought of this many years ago, but this is the first time I am sharing it with someone by putting it down in writing. If eternal salvation is so all important, then is this a true statement based on Biblical doctrinal truth? “It is better to have been a serial killer child molesting child raping child torturing child sacrificing Satanist saved by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ as one’s sin bearing savior and go to heaven than to have been a law abiding unbeliever and go to eternal hell.”]

VIEWED FROM MY CHRISTIAN UNIVERSALIST PERSPECTIVE

So if I were to put on my Christian Universalist hat, I would explain it this way. I would say that all people reap what they sow (aka Karma in eastern religions) regardless of whether they accept Jesus Christ as their savior in their lifetime, and that people would reap what they sow in the afterlife as well, but that God would ultimately draw all people to Himself in love and justice. God doesn’t end up being the warden of an eternal torture chamber, but nobody gets away with anything either. There is justice. I believe what I have explained can be justified by Bible scripture, but I cannot prove it is true any more that the evangelical Christian can prove that their view is true. But I can say that my view makes more sense and seems more reasonable and logical. But no one is required to believe the viewpoint that I have expressed in order to benefit. And my viewpoint does not threaten with eternal hell anyone who does not believe it. And with my viewpoint, no one should feel encouraged to live a wild life of sin with the idea that they have accepted Jesus Christ and are saved, because all will reap what they have sowed, in this life and/or the hereafter.

SELECT THE BEST FROM ALL FOR THE COMMON GOOD – PLURALISM

And if you look at history you can see a lot of examples of organized religions and movements motivating and bringing about a lot of really bad shit. Christianity is no exception to this. If I had to accept all of Christianity to be a Christian, I could not do it, because there is so much bad within it in my view. But if I look to it to select out from it only that which is good to the best of my ability, then maybe I do not have to abandon Christianity altogether. But the same can be said for other religions. So this is where I would like to encourage all religions to examine themselves and their beliefs and practices to seek reformations where necessary to become more accepting, nurturing, and respecting of the rights of individuals to make their own decisions without coercion or fear of harm. I also would like to see religious pluralism encouraged. But I seek these things with loving persuasion rather than forceful coercion.

PLURALISM INCLUDES ATHEISTS AND AGNOSTICS

And I really have to include atheism and agnosticism here as well. There are very many people who have had religious upbringing and some who have even pursued their religions academically and in dedication in their lives and careers, but they have eventually come to the place of moving beyond it, and many of these people have done so because they could no longer accept many of the things within their religions that simply did not make sense to them. It is good for people to be true to themselves, and if they have the courage, to be honest with others. In religious history respected Christian leaders have had fellow Christians burned at the stake for not having quite the correct Christian beliefs. It is hard for me to imagine that this would have been a society and culture where atheists would feel safe expressing their true beliefs.

So I welcome atheists and agnostics into the brotherhood and sisterhood of humankind. I want to hear their arguments. I already know that I agree with a large portion of their arguments and views. I do not believe that they are headed to hell, the imaginary “God’s never ending torture chamber,” because of their beliefs or lack of beliefs.

I am glad to have them as a part of our nation, a nation founded and dedicated to the principle of religious liberty and separation of church and state. I am glad for their opposition to the many dogmatic and exclusivist religious teachings so common in the world and in the U.S. I welcome them for their search for truth and meaning in their lives and for their ways of doing good in the world. I do not agree with the view that atheism is an inherently bad or evil approach to life.

If I had to condemn people for being atheists, I would have to condemn people for being Christians as well, in order to be consistent.

A COUPLE OF MY ANECDOTAL EXPERIENCES WITH ISLAM

I also want to offer a couple of experiences I had looking at Islam. Many years ago I saw on TV a couple of women of the Islam faith in a middle eastern country and their conversation reflected a simple humble faith in God, that reminded me of the simple faith that my grandmother had in her Christian faith. And much more recently, within the last 2 or 3 years I struck up a lengthy conversation with a devout young Muslim man working at a bank where I was doing business, and I was impressed by his sincerity of belief and practice and his knowledge of the scriptures, including the New Testament, and his respect for Jesus. Could this devout Muslim actually also be a Christian in some significant sense?

I realize that the typical evangelical Christian would disqualify him because he is not believing in the correct Jesus, something like that. Have you ever heard this line from the evangelical Christian camp? “Salvation is through faith alone in Christ alone.” What exactly does this really mean, from a practical standpoint? My impression is that it really means, “Salvation is through the precisely correct faith alone in the precisely correct Christ alone.” There are a lot of possible points of failure here. There could be problems with your faith and/or problems with how you view Christ. And if that is not enough potential for failure, there is the use of the word “alone” which occurs twice. I have actually heard dogmatic preachers say something like, “If you add anything to faith in Christ, you are not saved.” To me this is an example of extremely narrow minded evangelical Christian viewpoint to the point that it leads to convolutions, contradictions, and consternation.

FINAL COMMENTS & CONCLUSIONS

People of necessity need to have their own worldview or approach to life including how they deal with any and all new information coming their way. If a person is in dire straights like a homeless person on the streets barely surviving, then for them, survival is everything, so huge amounts of information if you were to suppose it could come their way, they could easily just pass on most if not all of it as being irrelevant to their situation. Obviously this is an extreme end of the spectrum. Somewhere in the middle there could be a middle class family struggling to makes ends meet, and they may be able to take in some information that is relevant to their situation and make decisions on it, but things involving more uncertainty and risk and controversy they would likely pass on. But if you get to the point where you have a person who has the interest and means to take on some controversial issue, such as something that the Fake News might seek to marginalize by calling it a “conspiracy theory,” then this type of person can face a dilemma. Conspiracy theories are like potato chips, it’s hard to eat just one. So this person is subjected to the hazard of having a barrage of conspiracy theories coming their way, and they can’t possibly eat or digest them all. So of necessity they need to develop a system where they can quickly eliminate the things that are likely not worth looking into further, and also quickly determine which ones might be worthy of their time and attention to look into further. There are so many factors at play here that anyone who might be in a situation like this has to decide and figure this out for themselves.

For me personally, at this point, based on the change in approach that I have made as I have explained in this writing, I will be tending much more on passing up on examining further any controversies or “conspiracy theories” that require blind faith in something, which often is some sort of religious belief. It’s possible that this could cause me to miss something important, but I do not have the ability or resources to investigate everything, so I have to draw the line somewhere. So that is what I have done. It has simplified my life in terms of what further investigations I am willing to take on.

And even with this, I do not have the ability to take on everything that is worthy to be taken on. So this is perhaps where synchronicity, serendipity, quantum entanglement, or the grace of God, whatever you want to call it, comes into play.

And it is OK to tell somebody that you don’t have an opinion on something because you have not studied it.

So I really am thankful for the Flat Earth Movement for kicking my butt to get me to start blogging almost one year ago, to get my views out there, and also for pushing me in the direction of upping my game.

 

Dioptra App Moon sighting vs Redshift 8 professional planetarium software prediction

The Dioptra App and the Redshift 8 planetarium software are promising tools which should have applications in doing experiments in the spherical earth vs flat earth controversy. Here’s some preliminary results testing these tools and a proposal for one way they could be used in a future experiment to test spherical vs flat earth models.

I remember getting the Redshift software for my Mac back in the mid 90s and successfully using it to predict and identify planets and stars and their positions in the night sky. There are quite a few brands of similar software on the market now, but without doing too much research I decided to go with the current premium version of Redshift now available for around $60.

So I took a sighting of the Moon with the Dioptra App on my Android Smart phone and then entered the same time and location parameters into Redshift for comparison.

Dioptra: Azimuth 102 deg magnetic & Altitude 38.4 deg

Redshift: Azimuth 114.9 deg true = 101.6 deg magnetic & Altitude 39.8 deg

This seems like pretty good agreement, but I will investigate further to determine if the results are within the experimental uncertainties expected for Dioptra and Redshift, or if there are any other explanations for the slight differences.

I plan to get a couple of friends, one over 900 miles north of me in Canada, and another almost 500 miles south of me in San Diego to take similar sightings of the Moon when high in the sky, and compare with my sightings, in order to determine if the data is consistent with the spherical earth model or a flat earth model. This should be a very simple and straightforward calculation to perform, taking into account the precise locations in terms of latitude and longitude for the sightings and also the precise times for the sightings.

I will report on those results once they are available, and I encourage others to do similar experiments and report on their results.

 

Stork Birtherism among God fearing Flat Earthers and Jet Fuel Deniers

A few months ago some God fearing Flat Earthers began discovering, gathering evidence, and reporting that jet aircraft actually do not need or use jet fuel as a power source to fly. The actual advanced technology used is hidden from the public in much the same way and for the same reasons that flat earth truth is also hidden from the public. It is just another example of Satan’s grand strategy and conspiracy to deceive us all into believing that jets require petroleum to fly and that petroleum came from rotting dead dinosaurs and other prehistoric life forms and that man evolved from lower life forms and that therefore God does not exist.

Some within this group are also venturing into another area of novel and hidden truth, stork birtherism. Many stork birthers are concluding that the idea that human babies come from and are the result of human beings engaging in sexual intercourse with each other is just as fake as the idea that jets need jet fuel to fly. God fearing Flat Earthers are the tip of the spear in casting out false beliefs and determining the real hidden truth about many things in these last days, including the truth about jet fuel and the latest revelation on how human babies come into this world, that they are delivered by storks, in the service of Almighty God.

The false belief that human babies come from human sexual intercourse is another of Satan’s great lies to convince people that they are no different than animals and that they evolved from animals and that therefore God does not exist. A recent convert to stork birtherism testified, “When I first heard flat earthers, jet fuel deniers, and stork birthers telling me that babies really come from storks, I thought it was ridiculous, until I tried to prove them wrong, and I couldn’t do it. So I became a stork birther. All those hideous videos you have seen of babies being born have either been faked with CGI or are the result of humans being possessed by Satan’s demons and having been enslaved by Satan’s human sex cult.”

[The flat earth movement not only puts another philosophical viewpoint on the table for examination, critique, and contrast, but also provides fabulous fodder for the follies.]

[Last March 2018 a friend of mine who is a flat earther referred me to a youtube video entitled “Passenger Airplanes Don’t Carry Fuel, technological achievement being hidden from public eyes” by the youtube channel “Enslaved By No Media” so I watched it. It appeared that this was a new concept catching on with some flat earthers. Shortly thereafter flat earth debunking airline pilot with youtube channel “wolfie6020” responded with a video “Don’t be ridiculous – of course Jet engines use liquid fuel.” So seeing these videos inspired me to respond with a Stork Birther satirical piece, which I originally shared as a comment on youtube, and also on Facebook. So here I finally got around to editing it a bit and creating a blog post out of it to hopefully share the satirical humor and laughs with more people.]

 

My Awakening to the Jewish Question from 2004 to 2018 thanks to 9/11

[Since I started working on this write-up a couple months ago, I have read what has got to be one of the most significant books that I have ever read on the Jewish Question, that book being, “From Yahweh to Zion,” by Dr. Laurent Guyenot, and translated from French into English by Dr. Kevin Barrett. I learned about this book when I listened to Kevin Barrett on the Brian Ruhe Show, so I had to immediately get it and read it. And the first recommendation for the book that appears behind the front cover is by a Christian scholar and process philosopher / theologian who I have a great deal of respect for, Dr. John B. Cobb, Jr. I think it would be good for me to quote the entire recommendation by Dr. Cobb here, since it helps to show how really valuable this book “From Yahweh to Zion” by Dr. Guyenot is. So that review is quoted below.]

“There is no question of the extraordinary gifts and achievements of the Jewish people and of their enormous contribution to American culture and intellectual life. Also, we all know that Zionists play a large role in United States in the media, in finance, and in international policy. In addition we know that there is rather tight censorship with respect to what may be said about these matters without ad hominem response. The fact of Gentile crimes against Jews throughout history is used to justify this censorship, much, but not all, of which is self-imposed. In my view, through their role in this censorship, Jews are paving the way for the rise of anti-Jewish feeling and perhaps much worse.

“This book may be simply dismissed as anti-Jewish, but it would be far better to engage it in a scholarly, rather than an ad hominem, way. Instead of discouraging scholars from considering the evidence of Jewish crimes, I wish that Jewish scholars would support freedom of inquiry and explain their reasons for disagreeing in open discussion. Otherwise those of us who seek uncensored truth may be misled by errors and exaggerations in what is usually hidden from us and is presented only at the margins of our society.

“Much in this book is offensive to Christians and Muslims as well as to Jews. As a Christian, however, I find the offense to be a stimulus to fresh thinking and repentance. What is selected to be said about us is certainly not the inclusive truth. But it has its truth, and the truth it has should not be neglected.

“—John B. Cobb, Jr., founding co-director, Center for Process Studies”

[So the rest of my write-up below is from about 2 months ago, having just edited and cleaned it up a bit. I have not tried to correct or change any of my views based on having read Guyenot’s book, but I think some of my historical ideas are not quite right after reading his book. My views are heavily influenced by what I learned within fundamentalist Zionist Christian upbringing and brainwashing (aka God virus infection).]

MY AWAKENING TO 911 TRUTH JANUARY 2004 & BEYOND

The September 11, 2001 event was traumatic for me as it surely was for many people. I was totally taken in by the propaganda. I had no hint that the official story was false and I knew nothing about a 911 truth movement. Just by chance I happened to stumble upon the serendipity.li web site when I followed a search result to an article on that site about whether George W. Bush was actually really a moron or not. But that site also had some articles showing how the way the WTC buildings came down was much more likely to have been controlled demolitions from explosives of some kind rather than gravitational collapses due to structural failure from heat from the jet fuel fires. I also consulted with some fellow employees with explosives expertise. So this got me started on my awakening to 911 truth. I then proceeded to read and research everything that I could about this. If this was true, I had to find out for sure if it was really true to the best of my ability.

MICHAEL RUPPERT, PEAK OIL, VICTOR THORN

Perhaps one of the first researchers I found was Michael Ruppert. Oddly, he seemed to think that the way the buildings came down did not indicate that explosives were used, but that it could have been due to just the jet fuel fires. Through Ruppert I got sucked into the Peak Oil issue and became convinced that this was coming down upon the world very soon. As I was searching for information wherever I could find it, I was going for other truths being exposed besides 911 that many in the truth movement were also spreading. Also, I have a tendency that if somebody is badmouthing someone else, I want to go hear what that person has to say for myself. So Michael Ruppert was badmouthing somebody named Victor Thorn. So I had to go find out what Thorn had to say.

ERIC HUFSCHMID

I learned of the work of Eric Hufschmid both in his book and his video. I was also getting exposed to how we have been lied to about wars. Victor Thorn had an online show called Wing TV which I ended up watching a lot, which he did with his girlfriend, Lisa, if I remember right.

DARYL BRADFORD SMITH, CHRISTOPHER BOLLYN

I also at some point got clued in to Daryl Bradford Smith and his show and web site. So I was a follower of Smith, Hufschmid, and Christopher Bollyn when they were all working together. When Bollyn had his run in with the law where he was tasered and injured by the police, I ended up donating a few hundred dollars to his defense fund.

SOFIA SMALLSTORM, LIFTING THE FOG, RICHARD GAGE, STEVEN JONES, AMERICAN FREE PRESS, ANTI-SEMITES, HOLOCAUST DENIERS

I remember hearing from Hufschmid and the others about a mysterious lady named Sofia who was coming out with a new 911 truth video. I ended up getting this video when it first came out, and it was very well done, and later learned that it was Sofia Smallstorm who created it. This was sometime in 2006. In November of 2006 I attended the lifting the fog conference at UC Berkeley that was a 911 truth conference. This is where I first saw Richard Gage and Dr. Steven Jones. I remember at this conference some discussion within the audience about how some reference was given to the American Free Press and possibly Bollyn’s work among others on 911 truth, and someone said that they (The American Free Press) were anti-Semites and holocaust deniers. So I started seeing how there were some areas of truth seeking that were off limits to many so called 911 truthers. As I said before, when someone tells me I shouldn’t look into something, that tells me that I should look into it.

I am pretty good at analyzing information. But I am not that good at memorizing a bunch of facts. So it is like this. If I were on a jury I would listen carefully and take a lot of notes that would help me remember the facts better so I could reach my conclusions about the case. I might end up being very convinced in my analysis of the facts in the case, but that does not mean that I would have as good of a command of the facts and arguments in the case like the attorneys in the case would have. So this is how I feel about the holocaust. I researched it quite a bit and concluded that the official story we are all told (the Jewish holocaust mythology or religion) is mostly false. But that doesn’t mean that I feel I have a good enough command of all the facts that I feel I am prepared to present the case like a skilled attorney could. Others have done this and have done a good job on this. I am thankful for them and their scholarship and courage, and especially realizing that many of them have suffered and some have actually gone to prison for so called “holocaust denial.” Can you believe this? As I have said before, if somebody tells me not to look into something, that tells me that I should look into it, and I will look into it if I get the time to do so. If having laws against “holocaust denial” is not a red flag indicating that the holocaust needs to be looked into and scrutinized carefully by as many human beings who have the brains, ability, and time to do so, I don’t know what does?

CYRUS SCOFIELD AND THE SCOFIELD REFERENCE BIBLE (FIRST PUBLISHED 1909) DISPENSATIONALISM

Somewhere along the way I also got clued in to the potential issues with the Scofield Bible. And wouldn’t you know it, that was the Bible that was recommended by my Bible teacher Robert B. Thieme, Jr. back when I started following him in 1974. So here began the dismantling of another one of the sacred cows that I was indoctrinated with. The Scofield Reference Bible with its teaching known as Dispensationalism started influencing Christians to believe that Jews would need to be restored to the land of Israel before Jesus Christ would return according to Bible prophecy.

It is hard for me to describe all of the ins and outs of all the different information that I delved into in reaching my conclusions along the way as well as perhaps eventually deciding there is much I really don’t know for sure.

ATTORNEY AND PROLIFIC CHRISTIAN WRITER PHILIP MAURO REFUTES DISPENSATIONALISM

I discovered that there was a devout Christian attorney who became a researcher and prolific writer on his Bible interpretations and his name was Philip Mauro. He initially was taken in by the Scofield Bible stuff, which is also known as Dispensationalism, but later became a critic of it. But much of Mauro’s other Christian beliefs were pretty “fundamentalist” in character. Mauro lived around the same time as Cyrus Scofield, although he was born 16 years after Scofield was born. It is quite interesting reading Mauro’s books that were written many years before the modern day so called state of Israel came into being.

So I ended up discovering other Christian scholars and authors who disagreed very much with Dispensationalism but were still quite “fundamentalist” in a general sense. This can be an important first step, because if you can show that some body of common and popular belief has a lot of credible arguments refuting it, you can hopefully be much more discerning and careful before jumping on that particular bandwagon yourself. Another case in point here is a Christian theology known as Preterism, where most if not all of Bible prophecy is viewed as already having been fulfilled or taken place. For example, the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in AD 70 by the Romans is seen as a fulfillment of much Bible prophecy by Preterists.

THE TALMUD AND ITS NASTY SAYINGS ABOUT JESUS

And then when you also learn about the Jewish Talmud and the nasty things it says about Jesus, Christians, and non Jews, if you are inclined to being a Bible believer, as I was, you kind of think this adds to the credibility of Jesus Christ and Christian Doctrine.

MICHAEL HOFFMAN, NATHANAEL KAPNER, ANDREW CARRINGTON HITCHCOCK

So I have read quite a bit of the work of Michael Hoffman. I have even read completely his book Judaism Discovered. Hoffman is very scholarly, but much of his writing is difficult for me to fully understand. I believe he is a devout Bible believing Christian of some kind, possibly Catholic oriented, but I am not quite sure. There is also Brother Nathanael Kapner, who I have followed for quite some time on his web site and videos. He is a devout Bible believing Christian of an Eastern or Russian Orthodox orientation. And there is also Andrew Carrington Hitchcock who has written exposing the Synagogue of Satan.

I could be wrong and hope that I am, but I suspect that most of the above probably believe in an eternal hell (unending conscious torment), which I no longer believe in, but they do expose the duplicity of the “Jews,” which I think is a good thing.

DR LORRAINE DAY

I am aware of a person who is a devout Bible believer, she exposes the duplicity of the Jews, and she also believes in universal salvation, as I do. Her name is Dr. Lorraine Day, a former medical doctor. She also has a very lengthy book where she explains her interpretation of the Bible, which I have read.

Although I respect these people, I no longer believe quite as strongly in the Bible as I think that they do.

MY CHRISTIAN UNIVERSALISM, RELIGIOUS PLURALISM, AND VIEW THAT THE BIBLE IS NOT THE INERRANT WORD OF GOD

I believe in universal salvation, that all will ultimately be saved by God, and that a very strong case can be made for this from the Bible. But I am also a religious pluralist. I do not feel that I can make the case that there is one true religion, and that all others are false.

Also, I no longer view the Bible as the inerrant Word of God as so many Bible believers do. I instead view it as the Word of Man expressing his views of how he sees and thinks of God.

DR DARREL RAY’S GOD VIRUS THEORY VERY USEFUL

I just recently finished re-reading a book that I had first read quite a few years ago, The God Virus, by Dr. Darrel Ray. His way of looking at religions as viruses I think is a very powerful theory to help explain and understand them. Keep in mind that his theory is not exclusively applied to God believing religions. For example, he even applies it to communism, which is atheistic.

So I want to be careful not to blindly accept someone else’s Christian religion just because they expose the duplicity of the Jews. There may be other ways to explain the Jewish phenomenon that do not require believing that the Bible is the Word of God. In my opinion, this is likely.

In the next section I try to explain the many questions that I am still working on about the Jewish phenomenon.

TRYING TO MAKE SENSE OF THE JEWISH PHENOMENON

How well do you know what you think you know on the many ideas that make up your view of reality? If you have something you hold to be true, how sure are you that it is true? 100%, 99.9%, 99%, 90%, 50% ? Do you think you can prove it to be true, or do you accept it on faith alone? If on faith, how strong or sure is that faith?

UNCERTAINTY ANALYSIS IN NUMERICAL SCIENCES

In experimental sciences where measurements are made and calculations and conclusions are made from those measurements there is what is known as error analysis or uncertainty analysis. I think it was high school chemistry where I first started getting introduced to this idea. It was called significant figures, or sig figs for short. It was a sort of short hand way or rule of thumb for abiding by a reasonable uncertainty analysis.

If you measured the mass and volume of a quantity of a substance, 37.42 grams and 29.3 cubic centimeters, and divided them on an electronic calculator to get the density 37.42/29.3 = 1.277133105802048 g/cc, would we be justified in reporting the result with 16 sig figs as shown on the calculator and as I have shown here? Of course not. Of the two numbers you divided, the one with the least number of sig figs was 29.3 cc with 3 sig figs. So you are only justified in reporting the result to 3 sig figs, so rounding, you would report 1.28 g/cc. There are different rules for different mathematical operations, such as if you had to add the numbers together to get your result. There is the rigorous way of doing an uncertainty analysis where you state the value and uncertainty of every measurement you made, such as 37.42 +/- 0.01, and carry all of this forward through all the equations and calculations you do with all the parameters to get your results with their uncertainties that you are justified in reporting. Mathematically, this method actually ends up using a relatively basic application of differential calculus.

UNCERTAINTY ANALYSIS IN SOFT SCIENCES?

So viewpoints, or systems of belief, or historical interpretations, should also be subject to some sort of uncertainty analysis. It’s just that it is not going to be so mathematically precise and rigorous as the previously described method used in the physical sciences. Surely philosophers and scholars in other fields have dealt with these issues. It is just not a part of my educational background, so I can not speak to it except to say that such a field of study must surely exist. (I have just barely started searching the internet for stuff on this, just enough to realize there is stuff out there, but not enough to say much about it. I did find a concept called Post-normal science (PNS) which seems to have some relation to what I am suggesting here.)

There are issues of uncertainty in historical interpretations and theories. There is a saying that the winners write the history. So within our culture we are educated or taught a certain viewpoint on history. But if you do your own research you will find there are other viewpoints that contradict much of what you were originally taught. The other viewpoint might effectively debunk or at least introduce some uncertainty into the things that you previously thought you were pretty sure about. But the alternate viewpoint might have some of its own flaws or uncertainties as well.

There is also the concept of cherry picking the facts you use for your history. Fundamentalist Christians would tend to pick the facts that support their religious viewpoint. The same can be said for every religion or belief system. This is what can be so difficult about history. Buyer beware. Be careful what you believe or buy into. Every religion, belief system, cultural historical viewpoint, is also potentially a means of control and influence by those whose loyalty is to their group and system and not necessarily for the truth or for the good of all.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GET PEOPLE TO BELIEVE WHAT IS NOT TRUE OR WHAT CANNOT BE PROVEN TO BE TRUE?

So if you can get someone to believe that something is true that is either not true or very likely not true or not able to be proven to be true, and you can get them to base their entire belief system on that as a foundational truth, then you have essentially captured that person. And the more things you can get them to believe that are like this, not true or likely not true or not able to be proven, the more ensnared in your system they will be.

TRUTHFULNESS SHOULD INCLUDE OPENNESS ABOUT UNCERTAINTIES

So where I am at now in my religious beliefs is as a former fundamentalist Christian who has come to the place of seeing that much of what I formerly believed or bought into has been debunked. I still consider myself a Christian, but a universalist in the sense that I believe that all will ultimately be saved by God, and also a religious pluralist in the sense that there are other ways to God or fulfillment in life besides Christianity, even including atheism, and many religions and belief systems in the world (including Christianity, Judaism, and Islam) are in need of reform and revision to be less toxic, terroristic and controlling, and instead more accepting, affirming, nurturing, comforting, and inclusive rather than exclusive. I should also add that they should be honest and open about taking into account and reporting the uncertainties in the things that they claim to be true.

So I no longer believe, as so many Christians do, that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God. It makes much more sense that it is the Word of Man, writing about his thoughts and views of God, and perhaps within this, overstating and exaggerating and embellishing the content so as to even be claiming that it is the Word of God. If the Bible is viewed this way, it becomes much less dangerous, and potentially more valuable for truths or wisdom or lessons that it might contain. A similar view could be stated for other so called holy scriptures of other religions. If they are taken less seriously and less dogmatically they actually end up being more valuable. Let’s also not forget the extent that these religious writings were developed and used by the cognitive elite to exercise power and control over the multitude under them.

DOES ANYONE THINK THAT JEWS ARE NOT OVERREPRESENTED IN POWER, CONTROL, INFLUENCE, AND WEALTH IN THE WORLD?

So we have in the world this very small minority, known as Jews, who exert tremendous power, control, and influence throughout the entire world.

RELIGIOUS BELIEFS IN END TIMES PROPHECIES

Do you realize that there are actually orthodox Jews who interpret their holy scriptures (The Pentateuch and so on, what is known as the Christian Old Testament of the Bible) as actually having prophecies in it that are yet to be fulfilled, where in their believed future fulfillment the temple will be rebuilt and animal sacrifices will resume again in the temple and some sort of Messiah will come and from that point on the Jews and their Messiah will be the rulers of the entire world? I am not making this shit up. It’s actually true. These are very scholarly, influential, Jewish Rabbis teaching these things. And I have even seen Benjamin Netanyahu (whose views I don’t think are considered ultra orthodox like the Rabbis mentioned above) refer back to the ancient Jewish culture and how special they, the Jews, are because of this. But I have to question whether just because a people has an ancient culture and history where their holy men wrote scriptures about how they were special and chosen by God, whether this makes them truly special in any way, except for possibly being extremely self centered, narcissistic, and arrogant, not the kind of qualities that are really needed to help advance the entire human race at this point in history, I would say.

And of course there are fundamentalist Christians who also believe all sorts of Bible prophecy but they also have the New Testament scriptures as an additional source of prophecy and they also see similar things happening in the future of the holy land and Israel, except that their Messiah will be the return of Jesus Christ. And let’s not overlook that Christians often see themselves as a sort of God’s chosen people as well, with similar potentialities for self centeredness, narcissism, and arrogance as in the Jewish religion and culture. And of course there are fundamentalist Muslims who also have their end times theories of how God will wrap up human history at the end of time.

The problem is that if you have a lot of different religions actually believing all of the end times prophecy stuff, humanity may set it self up for a self fulfilling prophecy of destruction.

I no longer take any of this end times Bible prophecy stuff seriously at all. I view any so called prophetical writings in holy scriptures as speaking to the hopes and dreams of religious believers at the time they were written by the religion’s cognitive elite so as to give hope and comfort to the people they were in charge of, for the future, that no matter how bad things get, that God will ultimately work everything out in the end.

SHOULDN’T PROPHECY BELIEVING CHRISTIAN STUDENTS OF CONSPIRACY THEORIES BE WELCOMING THE NEW WORLD ORDER SO AS TO HASTEN THE RETURN OF JESUS CHRIST?

And most Christians view the Jews favorably and even worship them as the source of their Old Testament Bible, and that Jesus came from them, so Jesus was a Jew, even though most Jews do not accept Jesus as their messiah. And there is also a portion of prophecy believing fundamentalist Christians who are also students of conspiracy theories, and they see all these terrible evil and futuristic things happening in the world as the fulfillment of Bible prophecy of a coming New World Order dictatorship headed by the anti-Christ that all must happen before the return of the real Jesus Christ to wipe out all the bad guys and set everything straight. Well, if they really believe this, why are they fighting it? I would think that they should be welcoming it and helping it along so that Jesus Christ can come back sooner rather than later.

WHAT I AM SEEKING TO UNDERSTAND

So I want to understand why all of this is and how it all works from the most opened minded approach and unbiased approach to history without any assumed belief system to sway the results. And for those who are willing to look at the facts of history, we know that many powerful, wealthy, influential, devout Jews have been involved in planning and carrying out some of the most evil deeds in history, such as the false flag operation of 9/11, just to name one of many. This is certainly not a condemnation of all Jews. And let’s not forget that the powerful Jews have managed to con the vast majority of Christians (many of these even view themselves as Christian Zionists) to go right along with them in support of these evil deeds whether knowingly or unknowingly.

And much evil and horrible things have been done under the leadership of organized Christianity as well. So most if not all religions and movements are a mixed bag. Good and bad have both come from them and been justified my them.

I LAY OUT MY UNDERSTANDING AND MANY QUESTIONS I STILL HAVE

The Old Testament scriptures spawned at least three religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The Jews also ended up developing a huge compilation of writings on the order of more like an encyclopedia than a single book, which is called the Talmud.

There is so much about the Jewish phenomenon that makes little sense and is absurd, but the Jews who control most of the news media and avenues of influence have gotten people to believe and accept a lot of things without even thinking about it.

So where did the religion of the Old Testament come from and how did it develop? How much of the Bible is myth and how much is historical fact? Was there really a man chosen by God named Abraham? Before that, was there really a flood with the only survivors being Noah and his family, and from his three sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth, the entire world was repopulated with human beings? Before that, was there really an Adam and Eve as the first human beings created by God?

So where did the term anti-Semitism come from? Supposedly Jews were descended from Noah’s son Shem, but only a very small portion of Shem’s descendants ended up being Jews. So the term anti-Semitism makes absolutely no sense as being interpreted as anti-Jewish as it has been interpreted since the term first came into use. I am thinking back to the thing I said early about if you can get someone to believe something that is not true, then you have captured them. Is this an example of that?

Is there such a group of people known as Semites, those descended from Noah’s son Shem. Well, if you believe this, then you must believe there was really a man of God named Noah with three sons named Shem, Ham, and Japheth who repopulated all the earth with human beings, and I guess you must also believe in a world wide flood that wiped out all human beings on the earth except for Noah and his family.

Some might say that a Semite is one who speaks a Semitic language. Well, the tower of Babel came after Noah in the Bible, where God supposedly confused the languages.

If one doesn’t believe in all of this Bible stuff, then I suppose there could be some sort of definition of what a Semitic language is, and Hebrew perhaps falls within this, but there must be many other Semitic languages besides Hebrew, so again, this idea of anti-Semitic being anti-Jewish makes absolutely no sense.

As I write this, I am not making any attempt to go back and check my facts or Bible scripture rigorously, but instead am just basing this on what I have learned and what I remember. Regarding scripture, there are so many different interpretations of things from Bible scholars, that it would be silly for me to quote scripture and try to claim any definite meanings from it.

So supposedly there was a guy named Abram who was descended from Shem, and God chose him as special, and that God was going to bless him and his descendants and some say also bless all of humanity through him, but also curse those who do not bless Abraham and his descendants. I forgot to mention that God renamed Abram, giving him the name Abraham.

So where did the Jews come from? First of all, Abraham fathered children through more than one woman. But the really special descendants of Abraham came through his wife Sarah, Isaac issuing from her. And then Isaac had twins, only one of which became the really very special one to God, Jacob. Jacob fathered children through multiple wives. God renamed Jacob Israel. So he had twelve sons, so these became known as the sons of Israel, from which came the 12 tribes of Israel, supposedly. I say supposedly because when you consider all of the history that transpired, like the 400 years of slavery in Egypt (again I say supposedly because is this historical fact or myth), is it likely realistic that genetic purity could have been maintained among the 12 tribes of Israel?

Anyway, after Moses led the children of Israel out of slavery in Egypt in what became known as the exodus, and a lot of wandering in the wilderness, and a lot of punishment from God because they didn’t follow God with enough faith to please God, some made it into the land that God had promised them, but not Moses. God had them commit genocide on the inhabitants of the land that God gave them but their genocide was not quite as thorough as God would have liked it to be, but still they were able to inhabit the land and form a nation, the nation of Israel.

So this nation ended up not being able to get along so they split into two parts, the northern kingdom known as Israel, and the southern kingdom known as Judah. There were ten tribes in Israel (northern kingdom) and two tribes in the Judah (southern kingdom). In the southern kingdom were the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. The northern kingdom was conquered in seven hundred and something BC and taken into exile, never to return, and assimilated elsewhere. These became known as the 10 lost tribes of Israel. The southern kingdom was conquered and taken into exile in five hundred and something BC but they were later allowed to go back and re-inhabit the land, so they were not lost to history. So this is how the term Judah, Judean, and the word we know today as Jew came about.

Realize of course that there are elements of uncertainty in this history. Regular historians often take issue with history that is only found in the Bible but not corroborated by other sources. So this is why the term Judean was a common term in the time of Jesus, from which came the term Jew. And Jesus was a Judean, so you could say that he was a Jew. Of course there are also those who say that Jesus never really existed. Much of the new testament scriptures were written long after Jesus died. And there is much debate on these dates even among Bible believing scholars.

So what were the promises God supposedly made to Abraham? You will have many descendants. Great nations will come from you. A particular great nation will come from you, usually thought to be the original nation of Israel. Through you all people or nations will be blessed.

Most fundamentalist Christians have been convinced that there are prophecies in the Bible for the nation of Israel to be restored by God that are yet future. They see the modern day State of Israel as a part of the path that is leading to that. In that sense they really do believe the modern State of Israel that was formed in 1948 is part of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy.

SO A PART OF THE JEWISH GOD VIRUS MUTATES AND BRANCHES OFF FORMING THE CHRISTIAN GOD VIRUS

So this is where I feel I need to bring in the concept of God Virus Theory as developed and presented in Darrel Ray’s book “The God Virus.” I just finished reading this book for the second time, and it presents a very powerful and insightful theory on how religions are like viruses. And it is not just religions that it applies to. For example, it can be applied to any movement or ideology, like communism as just one example.

So viruses tend to do whatever they can or need to do to ensure their survival, including mutating. So the modern day religion of Judaism is a God virus that traces back to the United Kingdom of Israel perhaps around 1000 BC, and of course even earlier than that. But the further back you go the more uncertainty there is in the history, much of which comes from the old testament Bible where it is often difficult to separate historical fact from myth.

As I previously described, the United Kingdom of Israel split into a northern kingdom and a southern kingdom and so on to the time of Christ when there was a presence of Judeans (Israelites mostly from just 2 of the twelve tribes of Israel, Judah and Benjamin) in the land of Palestine who had been allowed to return to their land after exile. So the Israel God virus had been under attack with the exiles and was mutating. And then because of Jesus Christ and his movement among the Judeans (Jews) of his day and after his death among his followers a new competing (or synergistic?) God virus came into being which eventually became what is known as Christianity.

So there was this hostility or enmity between the Judaism God virus and the Christian God virus right from the start, because one group believed Jesus was the Jewish messiah and the other group did not. So this enmity has been a part of the historical development of these two competing (or synergistic) God viruses up to the present day. Not many people know that the Talmud contains within it a lot of really nasty things about Jesus, that his mother Mary was a whore and Jesus was a bastard, and that Jesus is in hell being boiled in hot semen and/or feces. It also has nasty things in it about gentiles (non Jews), that it is OK for Jews to kill them, and cheat them, for example. Ever wonder why many Christians were suspicious and hostile toward Jews? Well the feelings were mutual. Not many people know that Jews declared war on Germany long before World War II started. If you declare war on somebody, don’t get all pushed out of shape when you suffer some consequences from that. If your ideology is a form of racial supremacy, like the exclusivism and racial supremacy of Judaism, then don’t be surprised if other forms of supremacism rise up and oppose you. What goes around, comes around. It’s par for the course. You reap what you sow. It’s karma. Get a life.

I AM BRAINSTORMING HERE WHAT MIGHT BE DONE TO IMPROVE THINGS BY POSSIBLY TONING DOWN AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE AND AS MANY AS POSSIBLE OF THESE GOD VIRUSES

So I am struggling with what are the best ways to expose the truth about the most pernicious God viruses and seek ways that these God viruses might be able to be changed or mutated into more benign forms.

I consider myself a Christian Universalist and a Religious Pluralist. I do not believe that there is or will be a place of everlasting punishment commonly referred to as hell. I do not consider Christianity the one true religion, making all others false. I am accepting of all, including atheists and agnostics. I am in a sense an atheist in that I do not believe in a God with the characteristics that most fundamentalists believe in. I am also a student of process philosophy and process theology as a help in considering an alternate way of understanding God that makes more sense and has less contradictions with common sense like the fundamentalist concepts of God do. One notable feature of process theology is that God might not be quite as omnipotent (all powerful) as fundamentalism claims.

I am accepting of all, but I also oppose the bad and evil aspects that are in the more extreme God viruses.

A FINAL PLEA FOR SOME JEWISH SCHOLARS TO EXPLAIN A FEW THINGS TO ME

I would like to pose this question (and many others) to Jews and Jewish scholars. Please explain your religion to me. Do you really believe that your holy scriptures are from God, and that properly interpreted they indicate that God has promised people of your religion and culture (Judaism and Jewish culture) a certain piece of land on this earth? Do you really believe that you are a special people chosen by God to stand apart and above all other people? Are you Jewish supremacists? Do you believe that it is God’s will for Jews to ultimately rule over the entire world and over all non Jews (aka gentiles or goyim which means cattle)?

What was all that animal sacrifice and burnt offering stuff all about in your scriptures? How is it that the burnt offerings were a sweet smelling savor to the Lord (God)? Burning human or animal flesh does not smell good. Is it possible that they weren’t actually burnt, but instead were BBQ’ed? Now that could be a sweet smelling savor unless one is a vegan or vegetarian. Do any devout and practicing Jews still practice animal sacrifices and/or burnt offering? If not, why not? And why call it a “burnt” offering if it is only cooked but not burnt? And if a modern day temple is rebuilt in Israel and they re-institute animal sacrifices, why? What is the point?

And what about the creation story or myth of Adam and Eve? Do you believe this is literally true. And what about creation? Are you young earth creationists or old earth creationists? Do you believe that God could have used evolution as a part of His creation process?

I have learned from Christian scholar Michael Hoffman that in the Jewish Talmud it is forbidden for gentiles to read and/or study the Talmud and there is a curse on gentiles that do this. Is that true?

And what about circumcision? How do you explain that? There are so many questions to ask.

A lot of religious leaders have a lot of ‘splaining to do, not just Jews, but Christians and Muslims as well, and others, that is, anyone who claims to rely upon the old testament scriptures (or any other holy scriptures for that matter) as the basis for their religious (or cultural) practice and faith.

MY FINAL PLEA AND HOPE AND DESIRE

Let’s debunk and defang the worst in all religions and movements as much as we can, but not by force or violence, but instead with gentle and loving persuasion, and make this a better world for everybody, and get on to solving the real problems humanity faces.

 

Minimal awareness of the Jewish Question prior to awakening to 9/11 truth in 2004

[The graphic used for this post is of the cover of the book “Anti-Semitism” by R. B. Thieme, Jr. which represents the views and beliefs I had on the Jewish Question that I learned from his teaching during the time I was one of his devout followers. I claim fair use of this image.]

[Preliminary comment about the God Virus theory of Dr. Darrel Ray. I have written about Dr. Ray’s work in previous blog posts. I have found his God Virus theory explained in his book to be very helpful to me. You know how fundamentalist Christians will often say something like, “we don’t hate the sinner, we hate the sin.”? Well, I can now say or think an analogous thing when I reflect back on spiritual leaders and teachers who indoctrinated me with wacky ideas that have taken me a lifetime to unravel. It is harder to have anger and bitterness toward them when you realize that they are just vectors for a virus that they had themselves been severely infected with. So I think the God Virus theory is good for how it helps to explain the way religions and movements (and even movements that are atheistic) operate and function and behave. So if you choose to stay in a religion or movement, you can be more discerning and pick one where the viral aspects are less severe, malignant, but instead benign. I am no expert on this, but viruses actually play an important role in biological life. They are probably necessary for life. In other words, if you could somehow eradicate all biological viruses on this planet, the entire ecosystem would probably collapse and all life would die.]

FAMILY AND RELIGIOUS BACKGROUND IN BRIEF

I come from families with a lot of fundamentalist Christian culture. My parents met in a fundamentalist Christian church. That is probably true for many of my aunts and uncles as well.

I am glad that my parents never gave me the turn or burn gospel threatening me with going to hell if I did not believe, but I managed to pick this message up on my own through the years listening to different pastors and evangelists give the gospel.

I was raised going to Peninsula Bible Church (PBC) in Palo Alto California. Although I did not understand all of these terms at the time, I have since come to realize that the teachings were of the evangelical, dispensationalist, Zionist, fundamentalist variety. The head pastor of PBC when I was growing up was Ray Stedman, a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary, a seminary very well known for its spreading of Dispensational Christian theology as made very popular in the United States with the Scofield Reference Bible that first came out in 1909.

When I was a senior in high school with a troubled life and seeking answers and seeking God, I was kind of at a cross roads.  In my own thinking I think I was open to seeking God in my own way. When I thought about the idea of hell it did not seem to make sense to me. So I might have been open to exploring things outside of the fundamentalist bubble I was raised in at this time, if I had gotten exposed to the right kind of information. But instead, when I expressed my seeking to a good friend of mine, he said I should talk to his mother.

GOING OFF THE DEEP END – HOW I CONTRACTED THE R B THIEME JR GOD VIRUS IN 1974

So it turned out that his mother was a hard core follower of a particular Bible teacher who had a tape ministry where people would listen to his teaching on reel to reel audio tapes. This teacher was Robert B. Thieme, Jr. of Berachah Church, Houston Texas. R B Thieme Jr was also a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary of about the same vintage as Ray Stedman, but Thieme took his teaching to a much higher level of dogmatism and condemning others who do not believe as he does. He probably would have looked at PBC as an apostate church even though his teachings were similar in many ways. Anyway, unfortunately, I ended up swallowing everything from Thieme, hook line and sinker, and became a hard core follower of him. Looking back on it now, the way I describe what happened to me is that I allowed an operating system to be installed on the computer of my soul, and that operating system had one or more viruses in it. I guess it was no different than the way that many people are taken in by so called cults. I would further describe that I was so trapped within the Thieme belief system that even if I encountered something in his teaching that did not make sense, I could not shake by belief that this man was one of only a very few individuals in the entire world who taught true Bible Doctrine. It was his way or the highway.

You have probably heard of Hal Lindsey, the author of the book from the 70’s The Late Great Planet Earth. I believe that Hal Lindsey was also a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary, and he also spent some time as a follower of Thieme and attending Berachah Church. Thieme also made it into the news when George H. W. Bush was running for president, since Dan Quayle and especially his wife’s Marilyn’s family were hard core followers of Thieme.

Webster Tarpley wrote a book with the title “George Bush The Unauthorized Biography” that ended up being available for free on the internet (I think you can still find it) where he covered some revealing information about Thieme. Many years ago I ended up getting a printed copy of the book, and the part about Thieme had been sanitized quite a bit, but I believe the original is still available on the web, Tarpley’s web site being the first place that I would check.

I think it was before the Thieme stuff that my friend’s mother had also introduced her sons and me to the John Birch Society (JBS). So I also started getting some introduction to conspiracy theory type stuff at this time through the JBS.

NOW FILLING IN MORE DETAILS PRIOR TO 1973

I want to describe what little introduction I had to Jewish information prior to the JBS and Thieme influence in my life, in other words when I was a kid growing up.

In so doing if I refer to someone being a Jew or Jewish I am simply referring to someone who was born into a family of cultural Jews, regardless of how devout they are in terms of any following of the religion of Judaism. And I would also include those who chose to go through whatever process they needed to in order to convert to Judaism, although I am only recalling one instance of this that I was personally aware of during my childhood.

There was a Jewish family in my neighborhood and I was good friends with one of the boys, and still am to this day. His family may have attended a reformed synagogue or temple to some extent. At PBC I was enrolled in the program called boys brigade which was kind of like a boy scouts for Christian boys. I remember when I was wanting to have my Jewish friend come with me to church as a guest on boys brigade night (Wednesday) the issue was raised as to whether this would be OK with his parents. I am not remembering for sure now whether he was able to come or not. But this perhaps was one of my first experiences of the exclusivity between Jews and Christians.

I did pick up on the concept of Jews being penny pinchers and the term to “Jew one down” as being to negotiate a lower price.

My childhood hero growing up was Herb Alpert, and his Tijuana Brass (TJB). I played the trumpet and piano growing up and I loved TJB music and playing it on my trumpet especially. I actually formed a group with three other boys where I played the trumpet, another played the trombone, and the others, drums and the piano, and we played TJB music. I did not know or learn until much later in life that Herb Alpert is Jewish. I suppose a lot of gentiles end up learning the same thing about other musicians, actors and actresses who they admired when young where their Jewishness was not readily apparent or emphasized.

I remember in junior high school where a female English teacher was in the process of converting to Judaism, and in her class there were at least a couple of Jewish kids who some felt she showed favoritism towards. I remember hearing the term anti-Semitism for the first time in my life being talked about a lot by a Jewish boy in the class.

I remember in high school being shown films of the massive heaps of naked emaciated dead bodies from Nazi WWII concentration camps. I don’t recall for sure whether the term holocaust was used. It might have been. I remember learning for the first time that the Nazis made soap and lampshades out of Jewish bodies.

I just have to throw in a little about the war culture I grew up in. As a young boy, what did we play in our neighborhood? Cowboys and Indians, army, or combat. In elementary school when we had drawing time, with my friends we would draw machine guns, tanks, and war planes.

After exposure to the JBS, the first conspiracy book I ever read was None Dare Call It Conspiracy by Gary Allen. This was not an official JBS publication, as I recall, but it was certainly heavily used to help teach people about the international conspiracy and how it especially related to finance and banking, but the Jewish aspect of this was downplayed.

I recall that at JBS chapter meetings that I was attending sometime after I graduated from high school, a lot of people in attendance were readers of the publication “The Spotlight” but it was officially frowned upon by the JBS as being anti-Semitic. Eventually The Spotlight was closed down, in 2001 I think, but it later got resurrected as the American Free Press.

From a friend in JBS circles I also got exposed to the JFK assassination conspiracy literature, having read at least one of the many books on the subject by Harold Weisberg, one in the “Whitewashed” series. Also with this friend I attended a public showing of the Zapruder film at Stanford University when it was making the rounds.

R B THIEME JR TEACHING ON DISPENSATIONAL THEOLOGY AND ANTI-SEMITISM BECAME MY VIEW

From Thieme’s teaching I learned that even though Jews have for the most part rejected Jesus Christ as their savior and are on their way to eternal hell, that we must be very careful not to be anti-Semitic. After all, look what happened to Hitler. So anti-Semitism was taught to be a very serious sin. God blesses nations who are good to the Jews, like the United States. But in a sort of convoluted and twisted belief system, I came away with the impression that the Christian God was supposedly punishing Jews for their hardness of heart toward Christ with the holocaust. I guess as long as God is punishing His chosen people the Jews, it is OK, but don’t try to help God do this, or God will punish you for anti-Semitism. I think there was even a doctrinal term for this, God’s finesse judgment, where He uses evil to punish evil.

So this describes pretty much how my thinking was conditioned with regard to the Jewish Question prior to my awakening to 911 truth in January 2004. In my next blog post I will pick up at the point of my 2004 awakening and cover up to where I am now, in 2018.

 

Extremist belief systems can be hazardous to your health (examples from fundamentalist Christianity)

Belief systems (many of which are religious) motivating conversion, worship, and practice based on extreme views on both rewards (prosperity in this life and/or beyond such as heaven) and threatenings of punishment (suffering in this life and/or beyond such as eternal-conscious-torment-in-hell) can be hazardous to your health.

TRAGIC CONSEQUENCES OF MALIGNANT BELIEFS BEG FOR BENIGN ALTERNATIVES

Beliefs can lead to actions, some good and some bad. It is important to scrutinize beliefs and systems of belief. If beliefs can be shown to be likely false, then an important part of seeking truth can also be determining those which are false. A truth movement also needs a falsification movement.

I was formerly a hard core fundamentalist Christian of a certain evangelical, dispensationalist, Zionist flavor. That was my belief system.

I am going to explain some particular beliefs within my former belief system and give two real life examples of how those beliefs led some people to tragic results. I will also suggest a more reasonable belief system that might have helped to prevent such tragedies from occurring. By doing so I am not implying that my proposed alternative is the only alternative belief system, or that it is “the truth.” I am simply suggesting it as a more reasonable alternative belief system that might have helped these people.

In addition this also ends up being a good illustration of the principle of taking certain ideas to an extreme, especially in terms of application, to help reveal the soundness of the ideas. And it would be much better to have this be a simple thought experiment, rather than having it be a real case where people suffered real consequences. Taking ideas to extremes in thought experiments is also useful in science and other disciplines. And the important principle “first, do no harm” from the Hippocratic Oath comes to mind as well. If a belief system seems to be causing harm, it should be scrutinized thoroughly to determine its validity. And also the principle of “by their fruits you will know them” comes to mind.

Three aspects to the flavor of fundamentalist evangelical dispensationalist Zionist Christianity that I was heavily involved in are described to provide the necessary background to understand the two real life examples to follow.

ASPECT 1 OF MY FLAVOR          JESUS CHRIST ONLY WAY TO BE SAVED FROM HELL BUT ONCE-SAVED-ALWAYS-SAVED

My flavor was of the “believe in Jesus Christ as your savior who died for your sins in order to be saved from going to hell forever,” and additionally of the “once-saved-always-saved” viewpoint, i.e. there was nothing you could possibly do to lose your salvation, even committing suicide and/or murder would not cause you to lose your eternal salvation, and that God could not even punish you after you die.

ASPECT 2 OF MY FLAVOR          MUST REACH AGE OF ACCOUNTABILITY TO BE ELIGIBLE TO GO TO HELL

It was taught and believed that if a child died while young, before reaching the so called age of accountability, they would automatically be saved and go to heaven. It was not clear exactly at what age this was. Apparently intelligence was a factor. The theory was that one who was more intelligent could reach the age of accountability at a younger age. On the other hand, someone who was mentally retarded might never reach the age of accountability, no matter how old they got, so they would automatically be saved and go to heaven. I remember the saying that it would be better to be an idiot and go to heaven than a genius and go to hell.

ASPECT 3 OF MY FLAVOR          ONCE YOU ARE SAVED BUT LATER TURN AGAINST GOD AND PERSIST ON THAT PATH THE HARDER IT BECOMES TO RECOVER AND GET BACK ON GOD’S GOOD SIDE DURING YOUR LIFE ON EARTH

This belief relates to God’s discipline or punishment of the believer during this life for failing to follow God’s plan for their life. The idea here is that since God cannot punish the believer once they die, if they fail to follow His plan, God will bring great suffering into that person’s life in order to try to get them to turn around and follow Him, but if that fails, God will eventually take that person out of this life in a most horrible manner of death with maximum suffering. A key factor of God’s discipline of the believer is that the further they have gone down the road of not following God’s plan the harder it becomes for them to turn around and recover. They are actually in a worse condition than if they were an unbeliever. The unbeliever can simply believe in Jesus Christ and that supposedly wipes the slate clean, but for the believer who has strayed from God’s plan, they have to intensively submit to listening to Bible teaching (a form of brainwashing where they must believe everything that is taught in order for it to work) over a long time in order that they might get back on God’s good side. Wiping their slates clean takes a lot of scrubbing over time.

TRAGIC REAL LIFE EXAMPLE 1     SHE KILLED THEM TO SAVE THEM

So the first example I want to give relates to this age of accountability belief. There was a mother of 5 young children who was suffering from postpartum depression and mental illness and she was despairing that her children would likely end up suffering in hell forever, so she decided to kill all of them to make sure that they would go to heaven. She killed them to save them. The extreme belief system she was exposed to programmed her to do this.

I want to offer a more reasonable belief system that could have prevented her from doing what she did. Suppose that God were viewed as both love and justice, that all people would ultimately be saved by God and that no one would go to hell forever. God in justice would punish wrongdoing in this life and beyond for the purpose of correction and ultimate salvation. But God would never give an infinite punishment to a finite creature for a finite sin. That would be as unjust as anything could possibly be. The mother even in her depression and mental illness would not have a reason to despair over her children because she could trust God’s love and justice to eventually save them to Himself no matter how tortuous the path.

TRAGIC REAL LIFE EXAMPLE 2     MURDER SUICIDE MOTIVATED BY DESIRE TO AVOID SUFFERING AND GO STRAIGHT TO HEAVEN

The second example I want to give relates to the once-saved-always-saved belief mentioned earlier, as well as the teaching of how extremely difficult it can be for a believer who has strayed from following God to recover. This was a case of a man who murdered his wife and then committed suicide. I knew of this case based on testimony of someone who knew him and was aware of some of the happening that preceded him shooting his wife and then turning the gun on himself. It occurred in the mid 70’s about the same time that I was becoming a hard core follower of a particular dogmatic Bible teaching fundamentalist. So it just so happened that this man who committed the murder suicide had been a follower of this same Bible teacher, but he had neglected the Bible teaching long enough that he felt that God was punishing him, and apparently he even had a phone call with the Bible teacher before he committed his crimes, and it seems he was motivated by his belief that since his wife and he were both believers in Jesus Christ and therefore saved, he could send his wife directly to heaven by killing her and then do the same for himself. The extreme belief system that this man had bought into programmed him to be susceptible to taking the kind of extreme actions that he did.

I want to offer a more reasonable belief system that could have prevented him from doing what he did. In addition to the things I already described of the alternate belief system in the previous example, suppose that instead of the once-saved-always-saved idea combined with the idea that even God could not possibly punish him once he died, that he viewed God’s justice as truly just and that God could punish someone after death for the purpose of correction and in keeping with the principle of reaping what one sows. With a more balanced and less extreme view of God and His love and justice, he might have realized that he really had nothing to gain from taking the extreme actions that he was contemplating, and that he and his wife would have been much better off if he had instead reaped what he had sown while still alive, with the hope and possibility of recovery and restoration even though it would not be easy. With this viewpoint he could have felt that he still had options in life. But instead, for him, murder suicide became a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

MIND CONTROL OATHS OF ALLEGIENCE / THE GOD VIRUS / DR DARREL RAY / THEOLOGY IS GOD THEORY / KISSING HANK’S ARSE / GEORGE CARLIN ON GOD / JOHN CALVIN HAS MICHAEL SERVETUS BURNED AT THE STAKE

It’s hard for me to think how best to finish this post.

It just goes to show how dangerous and destructive dogmatic belief systems can be. We hear about the concept of how someone could supposedly sell their soul to the devil, entering into an irreversible agreement that cannot be changed. I am not going into the issue of whether the devil is a real “person” or simply the personification of evil. But if someone could convince someone else that they could go through some sort of ritual or process to sell their soul to the devil in exchange for some worldly gains and that to do this would be an irreversible act, and they decided to go ahead and do this, it is easy to imagine the power of entrapment and control this could have on an individual, even if the devil were not real.

So aren’t these dogmatic Christian belief systems potentially the other side of the same coin here? You have evangelical Christians using multi level marketing techniques and scare tactics to get people to hastily make a decision to believe and then you teach them that whether they even realized it or not, they have entered into an irreversible agreement with God, that is impossible to ever change, so they had better follow God or else, but once they die, they will still go to heaven.

I am thinking of a book I once read quite a few years ago, but gave my copy away. “The God Virus,” by Dr. Darrel Ray. It would probably be useful for me to get another copy and read it again with my current perspective.

I can really relate to the virus concept for when I became a hard core follower of the dogmatic fundamentalist Bible teacher back in the mid 1970’s. It was kind of like I agreed to allow some software to be installed on the computer of my soul, and the software had at least one virus in it. So I just could not shake loose from the idea that this Bible teacher taught “the truth” and that he was one of a very small group of people in the entire world who taught true Biblical truth. There was no way that I would consider any possibility that anything that this Bible teacher taught could in any way not be the absolute truth from God.

So recently I was searching the web for information about the negative effects that the belief in hell as eternal conscious torment can have on people. I found this quote from Dr. Darrel Ray, author of “The God Virus.”

“Just like it’s hard to unlearn English, it’s hard for people to unlearn the concept of hell.”

So in keeping with the computer virus analogy, I would say that religions, philosophies of life, even including atheism, are all like operating systems for one’s life.

This is another reason why I feel I have to be a pluralist in all of this stuff. And there are different flavors of everything.

There is probably enough diversity in flavors of theism and atheism that these terms in and of themselves without further qualification are not very specific. I was reading recently in a book on religious history that there was a time when Christians were considered atheists because they did not believe in the Roman Gods.

Theologian Dr. David Ray Griffin has even written a book with the title “God Exists, But Gawd Does Not,” where he uses the term Gawd for the widely accepted view of God among many religious fundamentalists where God is viewed as omnipotent, all powerful, among other attributes. So here you have a world famous theologian essentially saying that he is both an atheist and a theist, depending on the definition of God.

I never ever again want to be pressuring or trying to convince someone to follow my particular beliefs and especially not adding threats of unending punishment from God as a motivational factor to convince them to convert. This is nothing more than a monstrous fear based multilevel marketing scheme. The one doing the selling has already been enslaved within a prison of fear due to the soul virus they have been infected with, and the virus has actually programmed the one infected by it to take actions to help spread the virus far and wide to infect as many other souls as possible. (For a satirical parody illustrating this sort of fear based multilevel marketing approach, I recommend that you watch one or more of the “Kissing Hank’s Arse” Youtube videos, the oldest one being around 15 years old, but I only discovered it recently.)

Instead I would want to understand people for who they are and where they have been and where they are at in their lives and if appropriate and they are interested share with them some possible directions that I am aware of that they could take without trying to steer them in some particular direction that I think is right for them, or right for everybody.

Just to illustrate what I am talking about here, suppose an individual had been through a fear based religious system and was seeking to become free of that. If atheism seemed to them to be a path to freedom, I would not attempt to discourage them or sway them away from that at all. Given what they have been through and where they are at in their life, atheism might be the best operating system for them to install on the computer of their soul at that time, and perhaps for the rest of their life.

I might actually have more in common with atheists including those who are atheists because they ended up not being able to accept the over-specified Gawd version of God they were exposed to, than I do with religious people whose faith is still in Gawd, the angry punishing God who loves us as long as we worship Him in precisely the correct way, although believers in this God just can’t seem to agree on what the precisely correct way is, and have even killed each other over disagreements they have had in these areas.

I am reminded of George Carlin’s description of man’s diverse views on God, which I will simply paraphrase. He said that God has been the greatest cause of death in history. Do you believe in God? No. Bam dead. Do you believe in God? Yes. Do you believe in my God? No. Bam dead. My God has a bigger Dick than your God.

John Calvin is considered by many Christians to be a great Christian leader and theologian, and a form of Christian theology (think of theology as God theory) is even named after him, Calvinism. He actually had a lot to do with getting fellow Christian believer and theologian Michael Servetus put to death (burned at the stake) because his God theory was different than Calvin’s.

Fundamentalist Christians will often refer to the Bible saying that Satan appears as an angel of light and deceives many. What if extremist Christian teachers of the same stripe as Calvin are actually distorting the true God, slandering the true God, and in so doing are actually operating under the spirit of Satan rather than of God?

William Donald Hightower Sr. as 17 year old flying student at Reid’s Hillview Airport 1945

Those who knew and flew with my dad during his 60 + year flying career should especially appreciate this article from over 70 years ago.

Flying Taught Here In From 8 To 12 Hours (San Jose News 1945)

(from personally scanned newspaper clipping)

Flying instruction is now available to civilians at Orcutt’s Flight Service at Reid’s Hillview Air Field, East of San Jose. Don and Harold Orcutt, operators of the Service, report that it takes less than a dozen hours of instruction to learn to solo and costs a little over $100. Shown above, left to right, are Don Orcutt and Bill Hightower, student pilot; Harold Orcutt Jr., in the cockpit, and Harold Orcutt Sr., spinning the propeller on the plane in the foreground. — San Jose News photo.

By PATRICIA LOOMIS

It takes only 8 to 12 hours to learn to fly.

Some 30 flying students are now receiving flying instructions at Orcutt’s Flight Service School, Reid’s Hillview Air Field, on the east side of San Jose, and most will be ready to solo after less than a dozen hours of instruction, according to Harold Orcutt, who with his brother, Don, operates the Flight Service.

Planes used in the war training program — Aeroncas, Ryans and Fairchilds — are used in instructing students at the field, Orcutt said, and the school is operated in accord with the wartime ruling against pleasure flights.

TWO INSTRUCTORS

The school has two instructors, Miss Florence Emig, daughter of Sheriff William J. Emig, and Don Orcutt. Miss Emig, former member of the San Jose State College Flying Club, taught flying at the Reno Flying School, Nev., and was graduated from the Ferry Command School, Air Transport Service, in Texas last December.

Don Orcutt was a civilian flying instructor at Thunderbird Army Air Field, Ariz., for over two years before coming to San Jose last March to open the first civilian flying school since the Army stopped civilian aviation on the Coast shortly after Pearl Harbor.

There are seven planes available at the school, with from 65 to 175 horsepower, Harold Orcutt said. He served in the AAF over four years in the 1920’s as a parachute rigger and station meteorologist. After leaving the Air Corps, and up until a year ago, he operated a string of “juke” boxes in this area.