Religion and the art of Intellectual Acrobatics

2 05 2009


To define Intellectual Acrobatics:
Intellectual Acrobatics entails a suspension of disbelieve, the eradication of logic, bad memory, and the talent to string together unrelated events. (false causation of unrelated events)

What is IA  in conjunction to religion and blasphemy? Ah, hum, actually the most pure and excessive examples of IA can be found in the piously religious… And to actually say so, and moreover name it ”Intellectual Acrobatics”, surely constitutes serious blasphemy in some quarters. So we are still firmly in the realm of religious blasphemy and I still have not been struck by lightning.


Okeeee, so, let me give an example, the kind of example we see all the time in the real world:
Soccer-club A is going to have a match against soccer-club B.praying-2
prayingSo, for two weeks the whole fanclub (and family) of soccer-club A is spending every evening in prayer, to God, to make sure soccer-club A will be winning. That should give a serious boost to their chances.
However… Soccer-club B also has a fanclub, who also pray every night, (with their family) for the triumph of soccer-club B…. Now, if soccer-club B wins, then they will claim their victory as ”God’s Will”, they won, because:  ”God was with us!”
This is only natural.
And if soccer-club A had won they would have claimed exactely the same thing.
Where Intellectual Acrobatic comes in is that the fan-club of the losing soccerclub does not follow the road of logic all the way, as in proclaiming that God didn’t favour their club but instead is quite happy to leave them to rot.
They completely forget the many nights of prayer, their following defeat, and God’s preferment of the rival club. Instead they happily start the whole thing all over again at the next soccer-game, still completely convinced that ”God is (still 🙄 ) on their side”


Besides this being a really stupid way to think, it also smacks of a revolting arrogance also induced by religion. Which I am sure many people will consider a blasphemous attack on religion and yet I still haven’t been struck by lightning.
You can bet your bottom dollar the post ”Religion and Arrogance” will come up shortly. But as ”Religion and Magic” is very closely related to this one, that will be the next one.

If I’m not struck by lightning beforehand.


Acrobatics by:
Young Chinese acrobats at The 7th International Acrobatics Festival in Wuhan



13 responses

2 05 2009

Wow! When you break your self-imposed silence you do it splendidly!
Will be watching world events for the consequences of this post.
If I understand you correctly, you are suggesting sotto voce that God doesn’t run soccer matches? Hmmm should get a decent lightning prod if not bolt out of that! :mrgreen:

3 05 2009

I couldn’t see a single word you wrote; the Chinese popped my eyes out. Nebuscribs, what’re those kids thinking?!! Don’t they have parents telling them not to do things like that at home?

3 05 2009

So what was all that Hand of God bit of handiwork in some football championship or another years back….hmmm? Pele or was it Maradona would beg to differ with your suposition that God does not care about football.

3 05 2009

All flippancy aside, what you wrote is entirely true, IMHO. I perceived an inkling of this as a child, when I was taught that only Christians would go to Heaven. When I asked about non-Christians, the answer was that they were unfortunate, unless we Christians took up the duty of informing the entire world about Jesus Christ. After that, they’d have no excuse.

Therein lay the seed of my religious discontent.

Yes, the Chinese acrobats are spectacular, but instead of distracting me, they highlighted the message of this post.

Given the persistance of religious belief over history, the omnipresence of it, and its ability to inspire the ultimate sacrifice (and I don’t mean Jesus), I suspect it carries a strong modicum of truth.

Future generations have the duty of sorting it all out, and they will do so, inshaAllah.

3 05 2009

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I always thought God was on MY side 😦 😦 😦

6 05 2009

Just a suggestion, based in my personal beliefs (as formed over the multitude of decades survived on this planet)… God is love, and we are commanded to love our neighbor as ourselves, right? I believe this to be correct – and religious denomination, skin tone, or country of origin has nothing to do with anything. After all, we monotheists all understand there is only ONE God, right? (No offense intended to any Hindu who may be reading this comment.)
If football team A truly practices what they so fervently claim to believe, why would they be praying for the defeat of their neighbor, team B? My suggestion, therefore, is that the team who is most dedicated to God and most thoroughly following His will, would simply forfeit the game to their opponent. Afterward, they would all join together for celebration!

Oh, and for the record… there are children starving all over the world. Does anyone really think God gives a flip about football, or any other of the zillions of pointless, self-centered issues that humans have been known to pray about? I’m just saying… then again, that seems to be what I do most…

9 05 2009

What excellent acrobats! Such beautiful heavenly bodies!
Why do you keep saying that you’re not yet struck by lightning?! Do you want to be? Don’t you know that if you wish too hard things do happen for real? 😀
So please no more lighting for you or anyone else.Lightning comes and goes as it pleases.Not to strike anyone…in particular. 🙂

13 05 2009

Everyone knows God is with Manchester United these days.

14 05 2009

Aafke! Just writing to see how you are doing.. I hope only good things are keeping you away from us!

18 05 2009

Aafke will be back in 24 hours, sh only had good things in the USA from what I hear!


18 05 2009

Thanks for the interest, I had a great time in the USA, but so very busy I hardly had time to even open my laptop!

Thanks Rhysz

9 09 2009

“Oh, and for the record… there are children starving all over the world. Does anyone really think God gives a flip about football…”

Doesn’t look like ‘God’, if there is one, gives a flip about starving kids either. Otherwise they wouldn’t be starving in the first place.

23 09 2009

Excellent point, Starving… which is why I make the effort to support organizations that provide food and water to them – in essence, forfeiting my football game (money) in favor of my neighbor (starving children) rather than my own selfish interests (new TV)!
Think of it this way… if all followed God the way He intended, there would be no one starving anywhere. So, it’s not that God doesn’t give a flip about starving kids… people simply don’t. At least not enough of us.
Do you?

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