Saturday, September 26, 2009

Are You Ready for International Blasphemy Day?

On the subject of prayer, I'm planning to set aside Wednesday for special prayers for the conversion of the hearts of those responsible for (are you ready for this?) International Blasphemy Day.

No kidding. The first ever coordinated day to blaspheme God, Jesus and any other religious targets that come into range of an assorted group of mostly artistic "free thinkers," skeptics and free-speech advocates.

The events in Washington, D.C. will feature art such as "Jesus Painting His Nails" with blood by "artist" Dana Ellyn who calls herself an "agnostic atheist." Which means that she doesn't believe God exists but she can't prove it.

You can find more about the event HERE. A few of the relevant facts should be stated:

Atheists, skeptics, freethinkers and free-speech advocates around the world will mark Blasphemy Day by mounting their soapboxes—figuratively and literally—and uttering words and displaying images that may cause offense.

And they’re making no apologies.

“We’re not seeking to offend, but if in the course of dialogue and debate, people become offended, that’s not an issue for us,” said Justin Trottier, a Toronto coordinator of Blasphemy Day and executive director of the Ontario chapter of the Center for Inquiry. “There is no human right not to be offended.”

He's right. There is no human right not to be offended. Upon that we can agree. However, it is hard enough not to offend people even when you try to be nice. Deliberately provoking people seems a bit stupid, sort of the opposite of "How to Win Friends and Influence People." I guess Mr. Trottier could write a book entitled, "How to Turn People into Enemies and Piss Off Others."

But if he is wrong about God -- and he is -- there is one friend that he might want to think twice about tweaking.

St. Thomas Aquinas described blasphemy—deliberately showing contempt or irreverence for something considered sacred—as a sin “committed directly against God ... more grave than murder.” In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus said, “Whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin.”
If it were me, I'd err on the side of caution, just in case God is paying attention.

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