Friday, October 06, 2006

Pope may abolish limbo

There’s a wonderful news story on the BBC showing just what a mad fantasy world the religious think they live and die in. Apparently Catholics believe in a state of limbo, somewhere between heaven and hell. They also traditionally believe that babies that die before they have been baptised spend eternity in limbo – probably a punishment for being so disrespectful to god as to die of their own free will before they’d had chance to apologise to him for being born with original sin. Now if that doesn’t already sound utterly insane and provide a bullet in the head of the idea of an absolutely good god then I don’t know what does.

But it gets better. If the Pope abolishes limbo, presumably because it doesn’t seem very fair, why doesn’t he also abolish hell? Since he has this power, thanks to the concept of papal infallibility, why doesn’t he use it? Why not abolish AIDS, or cancer, or poverty, or death, or child abuse, or Islam, or traffic accidents, or cerebral palsy or any of the other ills suffered by the innocent the world over?

The answer of course is that this wizard can’t risk doing any magic tricks that anybody could actually see didn’t work. What a hilarious fantasy world of nonsense religions are.

If you enjoyed this article please feel free to digg it down below.

9 comments:

Aunty Belle said...

Sugar pie, youse a tad mixed up on this one....first thang is that the Catholic Church has never taught Limbo as a definitive belief at all...it is in the realm of "specualtive theology" ..as sort of "place holder" until a more definitive examination of the problem has been determined--so now, duly examined, it is definitive: Ain't no limbo.

The limbo speculation is in the same category as when science (yore a member of the scientism faith, right?) posits certain proposals until such time as science can definitively state the proposal is or is not accurate, like there is or is not a Pluto or life on Pluto.

As fer whar' little babies that was not baptized go, Limbo, as theorized is was not a punishmment at all, but a fairytale lovely world of happiness to the degree that the undeveloped mind could apprehend happiness. No punishment, CD, since baby ain't done nuthin' on its own ter deserve punishment, and God is just.

Now, as fer yore own free will , CD, youse using it ter disavow all faiths, thas' fine...but "all" should mean faith in science as a belief system too, since science ain't got nuthin' ter say about how youse ter relate to yore fellow human.

An' puddin' is jes' fine ter take a pot shot or two at whatever faith youse aiming at...but get yore facts straight first so ya' doan seem so under-educated in the matter. Ya' doan have agrip on what Infallibility means as a theological term: The Pope ain't got no PERSONAL infallibility...he is personally sinful too, very falliblle on a myriad o' thangs
--infallibility doan mean he somehow morhped into God Himself. The Pope doan abolish hell because he does not have the power to do so...hell is scriptural. The Pope ain't God on Earth; but he IS God's designated spokesman fer matters of faith based on the Word of God and the teaching of the Apostles.

What infallibility means is not that he has the "authority" to allow or disallow this or that, it means one thang only: That his FORMAL, narrowly defined teaching on Faith and Morals (only) is infallible as it is from God. THe whole point of this is that "the buck stops here."

Meaning, a'course that instead of every little group going off with some haf'-baked idea of they own and declarin' that God said so to brother-whosit and sister-thought- it, and settin' up personal churches, Jesus named an authority
(Peter) for the prupose of keeping the Church on the actual road: not leaning left or right, front or back on MATTERS OF FAITH AND MORALS
(not on science, not on best farming techniques, not on who is gonna win the SEC championship.)


THis formal infalibillity is not the same as infallible knowlledge of all that is --otherwise he'd pick a winner with each roll of the dice at Harrods and solve third world debt...

Take a poke at the Church, iffin' thas's yore thang, but in justice to yore own intelligence, git yore facts lined up a little bit better so yore aim has a prayer of hittin' sompin' other than myth.

(An once ya take a poke sompin' of actual existence in the Church, mayhap I can come back and we'll have us a real good jaw session!)

>G.R.Confidential said...

Man, the BBC is just as unreliable on their coverage of Catholicism than they are on coverage of Islamic radicals - and the BBC has been sucking at both.

chooseDoubt said...

Aunty Belle.

A “place holder” and “speculative theology”? I understand. You mean it’s a white wash of an inconsistency in the religion. New born babies haven’t fulfilled the entry requirements the religion previously placed upon access to heaven and so it was necessary to have a less defined state to attempt to offset the idea of an unfair god.

“The limbo speculation is in the same category as when science (yore a member of the scientism faith, right?) posits certain proposals until such time as science can definitively state the proposal is or is not accurate, like there is or is not a Pluto or life on Pluto.”

No, I’m not a member of the scientism faith. Science is an investigative methodology, not a belief. It is a common and inaccurate assertion by theists that science requires faith or can be likened to a faith. I can prove that there is no belief required for atheism if you so require.

The concept of limbo was used to represent the fate of those who were good but died before the alleged resurrection of Jesus. It originates from the two references to Abraham’s bosom in the bible. It is comparable to a scientific theory in what way precisely? It cannot be tested other than through subjective evaluation of it’s compatibility with other concepts of the religion, so in other words not at all. How has it been determined that the concept of limbo is accurate or inaccurate? Has new evidence come about?

“As fer whar' little babies that was not baptized go, Limbo, as theorized is was not a punishmment at all, but a fairytale lovely world of happiness to the degree that the undeveloped mind could apprehend happiness. No punishment, CD, since baby ain't done nuthin' on its own ter deserve punishment, and God is just.”

In this religion heaven is the ultimate and perfect state. It is the ultimate achievement. Regardless of how nice limbo is alleged to be it is not heaven. If it were there would be no need for a later ascension to heaven to be with god, thus limbo is an inferior state to that of heaven. If one is withheld from the perfect state and maintained in an inferior state then one is punished by being excluded from that better state even if the exclusion is temporary. So “baby ain’t done nuthin’ on it’s own ter deserve punishment, and god is just” but baby’s name ain’t on the list and baby ain’t comin’ in anyway. Perhaps it is this contradiction that has finally led to a possible abandonment of the concept.

“Now, as fer yore own free will , CD, youse using it ter disavow all faiths, thas' fine...but "all" should mean faith in science as a belief system too, since science ain't got nuthin' ter say about how youse ter relate to yore fellow human.”

This gets so tired. Science is not a faith or a belief system. Calling science a faith is like calling reading a faith. Reading is a methodology for determining information encoded within a predetermined protocol – language. Science is a methodology for determining information encoded within the protocol of observable reality. The methodology is not the contents. It is as meaningless to believe in science as it is to believe in reading.

But I suspect what you mean is that I believe in atheism or that I have a positive belief in the non-existence of god. This is also meaningless as it allows for you to claim that I have a belief simply by asserting that I don’t have another belief. I can assert that you have a positive belief in the non-existence of a monkey called Stuart who plays Vivaldi on the violin under my bed at 3AM every morning. It does not appear reasonable that I should determine that you have a belief on a matter that you have never had any reason to consider. God is the musical monkey under the bed. I have never had a reason to consider it as a belief. It is a null concept.

Papal infallibility is the concept that the Pope is protected from error when making declarations about the faith or morals. In the catholic faith the concept of papal infallibility is said to be derived from scripture, such as Luke 10:16 “He that heareth you, heareth me, blah, blah, blah”. The infallibility of the Pope was defined in 1870 when an ecumenical council determined that the Pope is infallible when speaking on matters of dogma and morality. This was then reasserted by a second council. Neither definition limits the scope of the Popes power when speaking ex cathedra.

The Pope can make statements regarding faith and the statements are therefore true. So the Pope could in fact make a moral statement that a just and absolutely good god would not actually allow eternal suffering in hell as this would be immoral, especially since the whole universe is his plan anyway, and so hell would be incompatible with Christian morality and thus demoted from factual status to allegorical status. The Pope could therefore abolish hell just as he may abolish limbo. Both concepts come from the scripture. Similarly, he could abolish all suffering due to the moral connotations as there is absolutely nothing in the constraints of Papal infallibility that limit the magnitude of his declarations, even though there are rules regarding the agreement of the church amongst other things. The buck stops where it cannot be seen. That’s rather the whole point of the religion anyway and it was my point in asking why Wizard Ratzinger doesn’t do some magic tricks we can all witness.

I’d be happy to have a good chin wag. I was quite surprised to see your comment as I got the feeling you didn’t much like the way I think over at The Study of Revenge. I’ve been very busy lately so posting is going to be a bit slow, but I do still plan to finish off a post that I think you will find contentious about why I think we are close to the end of the human race.

chooseDoubt said...

G.R.Confidential,

That's a fair point and I agree with you although. I will be sure not to rely on the BBC for any information in future and will check multiple relevant sources.

Raindogzilla said...

And just when I'd mastered that crabbing, bent-backed walk necessary to clear the bar at 3 feet. Rat(zo) bastard!

Aunty Belle said...

Oh CD, Lovey, youse done a fair job now on yore homework, and I'se real tickled ter see it...heh heh...OK--I hear ya' and so happens I'se a mite busy too, and slow is OK wif me for this week...so I'll be along later to chew on this.

But fer now, youse almost clear on Papal Infalibility, but the thang is that the Pope doan speak "ex cathedra" eve'r time he opens his mouth--take Regensburg, as an example--it is true, what he said of course, but it ain't ex cathedra...that is a FORMAL teaching on faith and morals. So iffin' a Catholic didn't wanna hang wif' what was said at Regensburg, there is no warrant fer him to worry that he's head to hell...it warn't ex cathedra.


An I'se delighted you ain't no Dr. of Scientism. Clears out a lot o' rubbish right off. Glad to know that. Atheistic is much better state of being than Scientism.

grrr! Gotta git on back to real work, but stand by sweet potato, and in a few days, let's us tango.
Dust off yore St.T Aq, honey.

(P.S. What'cha mean 'bout not likin' ya over a Revenge? Was I snippy wif' ya?? Lawdy, I apologize. Being adamant oughta be done wif' some degree of politness, and I is heah-by reformed!)

chooseDoubt said...

Aunty Belle,
Yep, I understand that the Pope wasn't speaking ex cathedra but the point is that he may do so.

Work often seem sot get in the way of what I'd rather being doing but maybe I just have the wrong job.

St T Aq - lol - that'll be fun. I shall look forward to it :)

Aunty Belle said...

Still runnin' wif real life--will get to blog life directly, St. T Aq an' all...but...

thinkin' here that nobody else is checkin' backwards on yore blog...lemme whisper...mayhaps, darlin' youse protestin' a mite much.
Ya know? The way a fella who didn't stick out his marriage will protest against even the idea of marriage?

Until next time (A few days at least) atheists gotta deal wif the big ? of ex nihilo....that first sub atomic particle din't make itself. Somethin' had ter come from somewhar' or someone...and fer some purpose.

Bush up on teleology and we'll git a goin'.

Youse plenty smart, sweet potato. I'se pleased ter me ya'.

Yores,
Aunty Belle

chooseDoubt said...

:)

I've always protested against marriage, but I hear ya.

"that first sub atomic particle din't make itself. Somethin' had ter come from somewhar' or someone...and fer some purpose."

I prefer to keep in mind that I don't know the answers here. All I argue is that there is absolutely no reason to believe in god and that is probably why I have never belived in god. We may answer the origin question definitively at somepoint, we may not. But until we do I see no reason to assume we have that ultimate answer or to assume that reality or own existence must have a purpose. It may not even have a cause.

I'll look forward to our chat. You're plenty smart too and I suspect I'm going to have to do plenty of reading to keep up with you. But when I read I am open to changing my opinion due to what I learn. I'm not one of these people that only reads to reinforce and existing opinion. In fact, mostly I talk with others so that they can help me find the holes.