church satanic fashion show
Church of England

Why is the Church of England hosting a Satanic Fashion Show?

This is the altar of the parish church of St Andrew Holborn. It is desecrated with all manner of demonic symbolism, being the backdrop for what was widely publicised as a Satanic Fashion Show:

satanic fashion show

The elegance, the grace, the boundary-pushing… Miranda Priestly would simply adore it…

satanic fashion show

This isn’t a prelude to Halloween: it is Turkish fashion designer Dilara Findikoglu’s Spring/Summer 2018 collection.

Darling.

Seriously, what on earth is St Andrew Holborn playing at? How is this consistent with its mission? Did the resident clergy approve this event? Did the Rt Rev’d Jonathan Baker, Bishop of Fulham, even know about it? How is it possible that a sacred space can be used for what can only be described as Lucifer lauding? How does hosting a Satanic Fashion Show glorify God?

“There has been a church on the site of St Andrew Holborn for 1000 years,”  say the church’s website under ‘Venue Hire‘. And then we read: “The large windows provide a majestic setting for any event.”

Does “any event” really stretch to Satan adulation?

The church’s T&Cs state:

4.9 The Client must seek the written consent of St Andrew Holborn to put up any display in the Room.

So the backdrop had to be approved by the church. Did they seriously consent to the altar being shrouded by pentagrams, goat heads, inverted crosses, all-seeing eyes and other occult paraphernalia? Curiously, the church does expressly prohibit certain activities:

4.6 not carry on any betting, gaming or auction activity on the Premises;

But not, it seems, demonic demonstrations. In fact, anything goes, so long as clients

14:17 comply at all times with St Andrew Holborn’s no smoking policy. Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the Premises.

So no smoking, but the glorification of Satan is cool.

O, for goodness’ sake, it’s just a fashion show, you say. It’s all completely harmless – no different, in fact, from a church hosting concerts, or a cathedral allowing Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen to be filmed in its sanctuary.

Ah, but it is, it is.

The Musicians’ Church will host musical programmes by Beethoven, Brahms, Beyoncé and Boyzone: it is not going to host something called ‘The Satanic Requiem’ or ‘Black Mass for Lucifer’, in celebration of the souls who are going to burn for all eternity, is it? And consider the reasoning of staff at Wells Cathedral:

wells cathedral hellboy filming statement

This is wholly consistent with the Cathedral’s mission, to be “an instrument of God’s mission where the Christian faith is explored, practised, preached, taught and interpreted”. This is no different from a church hosting a theatrical production of (for example) Dr Faustus: the protagonist may sell his soul to Mephistopheles and, unable to repent, end up in Hell, but that is consistent with the gospel of salvation and the saving grace of Christ, is it not? Dr Faustus does not make Satan alluring; Hellboy doesn’t bewitch viewers with the virtues of Lucifer worship and the benefits of a once-in-a-lifetime holiday in hell, does it?

O, hang on.

Bugger.

It wasn’t a Satanic Fashion Show, but a Masonic Fashion Show.

Phew.

That’s alright then

  • Watchman

    And has Gloucester Cathedral ever been taken to task for encouraging children to be involved in witchcraft by allowing itself to be used for Harry Potter films? It seems that taking mammon’s shilling takes precedence over Jesus’ mission so far as the CofE is concerned. A tad worse, I think than the moneychangers using the Temple for their business.

    • Royinsouthwest

      I agree the Gloucester Cathedral should not normally allow itself to be used for films except perhaps ones with an explicitly Christian message or for ones promoting something that most Christians would approve of. However there are enough real problems in the world to worry about without imagining that children will start practising witchcraft because of Harry Potter films or the books. You might as well say classic westerns are bad because they will encourage children to shoot people.

      When I was in my early teens Dennis Wheatley was a very popular author and I read many of his novels. They feature black magic and satanism far more strongly than anything written by J.K. Rowling but the people who practise them always get defeated in the end. Neither I nor any of my friends who read such novels had the slightest desire to get involved with such stuff.

      • Sarky

        Crikey, a sensible comment. All this occult paranoia makes christians look ridiculous.

        • Anton

          It’s not paranoia. We just dislike it. And we wish our churches to be cleansed of it.

      • Watchman

        Children do not seem to be getting the Christian message as part of their education whereas we used to be able to read Denis Wheatley without taking it seriously. Children are now seeing witchcraft as an exciting way to have occult experiences and Harry Potter is showing them the way. You obviously have never seen teenagers in a state of terror after playing with a oiuja board and a mother in a state of fear, as I have. Harry Potter is an invitation to practice divination and witchcraft and it is utterly irresponsible to sanction it.

      • magnolia

        The problem is not subject-matter, the problem is theme. In Harry Potter the apprentice wizard and all the practitioners of the occult are good. Like an inverted “The Keys of the Kingdom” (A. J. Cronin) I made myself fairly unpopular with one of my children’s schools by saying I wished no contact with Harry Potter whatsoever. Years on, no regrets at all. It is a gateway.

    • Step11Recovery

      The Harry Potter books are no more sinister than Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, a work actively supported and assisted by C. S. Lewis, who himself wrote about children involved in a world of magic. We should choose our battles carefully.

      • Watchman

        Your nativity is touching if rather dangerous. Perhaps you ought to read what an ex witch has to say about Harry Potter
        http://www.pacinst.com/witch.htm

        • Step11Recovery

          Perhaps you ought to read what an ex witch has to say about Harry Potter

          Oh, I’ve gone even further – I have read the books themselves. All of them. Quite enjoyed the first couple of the series, but became hard work towards the end.

          There is nothing in them to concern a Christian, assuming they possess a reasonable degree of common sense, and a great deal to applaud.

          On an unrelated note, I’m rather moved at the thought that I have a touching nativity, it’s a curious, but pleasant idea 🙂 (I know, auto-correct, now that really is impersonal malevolence).

          • Watchman

            You appear to have missed the point, unless you believe that your assessment of the books is more important than that of someone who has practiced witchcraft and is in a position to give an account of the nature of the books from a position of experience of witchcraft. The link provided that insight.

        • Sarky

          I would have read it, but i was too busy in the kitchen making my tinfoil hat.

        • Murti Bing

          I would hope his ‘nativity’ was a joyous occasion.

      • Anton

        The Potter books promote the view that the occult is neutral, and can be used for good or evil according to the user’s intent. But God in scripture God believers to keep clear of magic arts, which are dangerous.

        Tolkien insisted that The Lord of the Rings was not allegory, and in a letter he called it a fundamentally Catholic work in which “the religious element is absorbed into the story and the symbolism.” There are no Covenants, no Incarnation, no Trinity. There is no organised religion or priesthood, and characters do not pray or offer sacrifice before battle or at other important moments. There is a good wielder of magic in The Lord of the Rings, Gandalf the ‘wizard.’ He is not in fact a man but one of the ‘maiar’ (angels do have supernatural powers). His Middle Earth books never suggest that man has occult powers which should be developed, in contrast to Potter.

    • Inspector General

      When the producers of Harry Potter approached Gloucester Cathedral, the then Dean instantly recognised the title character as that from the popular children’s book and that witchcraft was involved. He initially declined permission to film there saying “not what the cathedral should be associated with”.

      However, good intentions do not a venerable building’s maintenance pay, and a large amount of readies was just what the Diocesan Architect required. Besides, there was no mass slaughtering of chickens or deflowering of virgins required. It was a film that if it could not obtain a children’s certification for the cinema would be a hugely expensive flop. That’s how the Inspector was given the story. As far as one knows the actual sum has never to this date been disclosed, but be assured, as this man here was, it was ‘a lot’.

      • Step11Recovery

        Film work pays very well.

        I used to play in a Brass Band in the Wirral, and we were hired for half a day (from memory, though it was 40 years ago, long before I finally got sober) for a scene in Chariots of Fire.

        I don’t know the precise fee we received but it was numbered in the thousands,and paid for a complete set of new uniforms – 25 bandsmen plus a few spares. These don’t come cheap, being elaborate affairs with all manner of martial decoration. At the time your average park bandstand gig paid around £50

        • Inspector General

          Film crew descended on Gloucester Docks the other year. Just for a few waterfront scenes. Think the film was ‘Alice’ of Wonderland fame. Only for 2, maybe 3 days. Production costs for this briefity, around 5-6 million apparently. Their vehicles, including mobile homes, filled a sizeable car park.

          • Step11Recovery

            Yes, I can believe it. Chariots of Fire was in the days of much smaller film budgets, but it was quite a circus all the same.

          • Step11Recovery

            Thinking about it (though I was drinking at the time so my memory cannot be relied upon) Chariots of Fire may have covered a brand new set of instruments as well. If that is the case the fee would have been a very great deal indeed..

          • Inspector General

            To be a productions accountant would be a fascinating job. In the aforementioned situation, tall ships descended upon Gloucester docks for the filming. One shouldn’t think they’d come cheaply…

          • Anton

            They all ran the 100m in slow motion. Even I could run faster.

        • Murti Bing

          Are you the one on the left with the French horn?

          • Step11Recovery

            Brass bands don’t include the french horn. It’s tone is much closer to that of woodwind than brass. For that reason they are used in military bands, which unlike brass bands include all the woodwind instruments.

      • Watchman

        Thanks for the detail IG? Do you think Jesus would have approved?

        • Sarky

          I doubt it. Hes more of a ‘hunger games’ kinda guy.

        • Inspector General

          Yes, he would have. We know that Judas Iscariot held the disciples finances, and perhaps they paid for the odd necessity like donkey rides into Jerusalem for our Lord and Master.

  • Tim Vaughan

    There was also this a few years ago at Christ Church Spitalfields – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=boo2Zm69fhY

  • A Berean

    With the CoE’s ever increasing need or want to maintain its relevancy in the prevailing culture it shows that it will do whatever it takes to appear so whether it is hosting Muslims for a reading on their Koran in which a verse is read that denies the divinity of Jesus Christ and another church hosting a Muslim call to prayer as well as this latest travesty. Perhaps the CoE should try being Christian instead of throwing everything to the wind in its bid to stay relevant?

    • Lollia

      They’ve tried that, people are bored with Christianity.

      • Sarky

        You’ve summed up the whole problem in five words.

        • Lollia

          Thanks. (Isn’t it 8, or 8-and a bit words?)

      • Little Black Censored

        When did they try it?

        • Lollia

          I suppose it depends which aspect of Christianity we consider: They have certainly tried exterminating anyone who deviated from the official line, eg having other gods than Yahweh( Ten Commandments), or various later “heresies”, like to what extent was Jesus all- human, part- human, all- God, part-God (Arianism etc;- Albigensian crusade against the Cathars, forced conversions of other cultures,eg Hindus, African animists, Muslims, Meso-Americans, Northern Crusades in Russia and against Baltic pagans. etc etc.

          • alternative_perspective

            Well, as pointed out previously – forced conversion is, in Christian terms, an oxymoron. One cannot compel devotion only conformity. And Jesus isn’t too interested in the latter.

            And at the end of the day – all those with “heretical” beliefs have the same baptism, they hope in the same thing, believe in the most part the same beliefs and have the same needs. You don’t see Catholics withholding aid from Coptics simply because of their Monophysitism. Furthermore, Christians get to know each other – these terms of division turn out, in large part, not to be points of difference but clarion calls to remembrance: to hold on to something important and vital and not to lose something in a rush for supposed doctrinal harmony.
            And as for those Russians and Baltic pagans – they tend to be radically Christian now – particularly those ones who suffered 70 year of atheist-Marxist abuse. The same story for the rapid growing Chinese church. Where compulsion failed – in these cases God’s spirit has succeeded, and will eventually in the remainder.
            Albania was once deeply atheist, far behind the iron curtain and radically hostile to Christianity – today University Christian Union’s are sending missionaries there and faith is blossoming. Things change.

          • Lollia

            We may not (or we may) see “Catholics withholding aid from Coptics”, but are you really denying the conflict between different strains of Christianity right from its beginning;-not least the 30-years war between Catholics and Protestants, as just one example amongst hundreds?–I am sure plenty of “withholding” went on during that event.
            Also you seem to be saying that because everybody(?) in these locations (Baltic etc) are now radical Christians, -therefore the means justified the ends?– all that torture and burning and destruction was for the greater glory of (one version) of God?
            I imagine that is what the Holocaust practitioners said while stoking up the ovens at Auschwitz-as a means for solving the Jewish problem.

      • Richard Woods

        “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.” – Gilbert K. Chesterton

        • Lollia

          “Well he would say that wouldn’t he” (see Mandy Rice Davies”),
          but yes I suppose he was right; has anyone ever turned the other cheek?

          • alternative_perspective

            Lots do, you don’t hear much about them because they often end up dead.

      • alternative_perspective

        Agreed. I think the Christianity we’ve created in a search for doctrinal purity, or inclusivity or accessibility or in reaction to other denominations has impoverished “the way” of Christ.

        I think history has proven Christianity in terms of ultimate truth – but over the generations we’ve failed to think through how we live this truth out day-to-day. The Buddhists on the other hand seem somewhat to have accepted the internal incoherence of their beliefs and as such spent the vast majority of time thinking about how they “do” Buddhism. Their societies seem to be ridden with poverty and abuses but in repeated surveys they are happier than our Western civilizations. I’m not saying happiness is the ultimate measure of things or even that the West is Christian but that they seem to have developed “a way” of living, despite the suffering, which gives them peace.

        At the end of the day, when push come to shove – for most people – ultimate truth is secondary, how one lives is fundamental. I’m not going to claim this is correct but I think this is true. Is it then any wonder that Western Christianity, with its impoverished culture and existential superficiality is losing followers? I personally think its an obvious consequence of many choices we’ve made as both a society and church over decades. And it will not be reversed with tinkering, initiatives or any “new evangelisation”.

        The ecclesia needs to bring its head out of the clouds and spend some time amongst the mortals here in the dirt. Reactionary calls for greater inclusivity or accessibility will only hasten the decline because the only thing keeping the show on the road is the hard truth of Jesus Christ, his radically lived life and his remarkable and vindicated claims. Any dilution of this in the name of diversity will kill off Western Christianity and leave a Jesus themed paganism in its place.

  • Maalaistollo

    ‘When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place…’

  • Step11Recovery

    Those of a certain age will remember the excellent and very funny TV show, Not the Nine-O-Clock News. One of their greatest pieces was The Devil: Is he all bad?, which ridiculed the trend for the Church to welcome more or less anything in a craven attempt to appear ‘inclusive’.

    It seems that it wasn’t a comedy sketch as we all thought at the time, but a prophecy. I don’t find this event sinister at all, but it is bloody stupid

    • Pubcrawler

      I posted a link to that sketch on here a few months ago. Here it is:

      • James M

        Call me humourless, but I thought that was rather unfunny. Possibly because it is so near the knuckle 🙁

    • Bernard from Bucks

      I also remember this from the BBC –
      “The British Armed Forces has officially recognised its first registered Satanist, a newspaper reports.
      Naval technician Chris Cranmer, 24, has been allowed to register by the captain of HMS Cumberland, based at Devonport Naval Base in Plymouth.
      The move will mean that he will now be allowed to perform Satanic rituals on board the vessel.”

      • magnolia

        With no realisation that it will put the safety and well-being of other crew members at risk, apparently. I still can’t get my head round the US Army having had a Lt. Col with strategic power who was a Satanist (Aquino)..Ultra creepy demeanour too that would cause discomfort just from being in his presence. It makes me wonder whether the non-Satanists didn’t see the evil engraved upon the countenance or pretended not to see it, or discounted it, or saw it and said it didn’t feature on their assessment criteria. Whichever way they appointed a sworn enemy of Christians to defend their people, including a large no. of Christians.

        No brainer, really..

        • alternative_perspective

          I think you’re completely right.

          Without the constant renewal of the Holy Spirit people simply fail to recognise the evil before them. This includes Christians who are not pursuing holiness as doggedly as they ought and so this includes all of us at various points in time.

          Whether original sin is chosen, learned, cultural, genetic, epigenetic, spiritual or some hybrid of the aforementioned – we all tend towards it. It blinds us to its existence, whether in ourselves or others and colours our perception of everything.

          It quite literally tints our vision so that like sunglasses or coloured swimming goggles we are no longer able to correctly discern reality around us. We accept as normal what is incorrect and rebuke assertions to the contrary because our entire lives have been lived under its influence.

          Moreover we often violently defend our retorts because the very idea that everything we’ve ever thought; every act we’ve even performed and even every love we’ve experienced has been distorted by it – accepting such a suggestion is deeply disturbing, “un-natural” and jarring in the extreme.

          Is it any wonder then people often talk about how everything looks differently after they’re saved and that actual physical, brain trauma can be measured in the radically saved by MRI.

          Considering the last stunning point, I consider it near miraculous that anyone is saved at all and so I can truly empathise with the disciples astonishment, when in Matt 19, 25, when they exclaim “who then can be saved?”. Jesus answers it so truly, and speaks to the miraculous: “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

          AMEN, thanks be to God!

  • Pete Broadbent

    The prosaic explanation from the parish: “The parish of St. Andrews has always supported London Fashion Week. We took this booking in good faith and were not aware of the content or design before the show took place. This was obviously a mistake, and the content of this show does not reflect the Christian faith of the Church. We will be looking at our booking processes going forward to ensure this does not happen again.”

    • Step11Recovery

      Fair enough. As always, when choosing between supernatural malevolence and simple incompetence as explanations for any given event, the safe bet is incompetence. As well as being a fallen race we are a spectacularly dull-witted one as well.

    • Little Black Censored

      “Going forward” – business-speak.

    • RobinHMasters

      “were not aware of the content or design before the show took place.”

      Nonsense. Someone in authority had to have seen the content before the start of the show, and didn’t put an end to it.

      Even so, someone should have called a halt to it after it had started.

      • betteroffoutofit

        They should also get it taken down: NOW, PRONTO, INSTANTER.

        • Inspector General

          I say, dear lady, ‘instanter’ is an excellent word, and the Inspector will induct it into his canon forthwith…

          • betteroffoutofit

            So glad you like it! I know it thanks to my ‘dear old dad’ – now long gone.

    • Father David

      Bring back Richard Chartres

      • Chefofsinners

        Ouch! Tad harsh, that man.

        • Father David

          I feel your pain.But now that old Chartres has gone can you think of a single Church of England bishop who possesses his gravitas or speaks with his air of authority? He should have been Cantuar.

          • Chefofsinners

            True, but this would have happened whether Chartres or Broadbent was bishop of London.

    • Chefofsinners

      The prosaic explanation from Pilate: I allowed this crucifixion in good faith. I was not aware of the discontent of the divine before the show took place. This was obviously a mistake, and the content of this show does not reflect the Christian faith of the Empire. We will be looking at our judicial processes going forward to ensure this does not happen again.”

      • Anton

        Do email it to them.

  • Maureen O’Brien

    Perhaps this is one of the reasons the Church of England is losing members.

    • Watchman

      When it loses the truth it loses relevance and when it loses relevance it will lose the attention of the Body of Christ.

  • dannybhoy

    “The church’s T&Cs state:
    4.9 The Client must seek the written consent of St Andrew Holborn to put up any display in the Room.”
    To which both promoter and venue provider will stick two fingers in the air and respond with a four letter word starting and ending with ‘T**T
    They don’t care! They really don’t care, and have been able to go so far down the road of rebellion and corruption because Godly and Christian folk have been content to respond with a twice repeated three letter word…
    “Tut Tut.”

  • saintmark

    I think that when the Muslims take over they will have a final solution to all pagan activity in this country

    • betteroffoutofit

      That’s if they win the battle against the euSSR’s army.

      • James60498 .

        The euSSR’s army won’t have a chance, as the euSSR is so convinced that there won’t be one that it’s demanding that all states take them in. Even Norway.

        • betteroffoutofit

          True, it certainly looks like a pagan.vs.pagan alliance – probably funded by the people-smugglers.

          But . . . it’s hard to imagine all the marxist-commies turned Moslem. I guess you may be right there, then: total genocide could ensue. Except, of course, we should consider John’s Revelation.

      • Manfarang

        Shouldn’t be difficult for Europe to win as anyone who is familiar with Arab militaries knows.

    • Anna

      Exactly- and a final solution to SSM and all the rest.

      God works in mysterious ways. The first dispersal of the Jews cured them of their idolatrous ways, and although it would be a terrible thing if Islam gained control over Europe, God would permit it to save the continent from utter moral degradation. Morality in Sharia governed nations is far from perfect and the Muslims hold the high moral ground only in Mehdi Hasan’s dreams (Jean Sasson’s novels describe terrible perversions behind closed doors in Saudi Arabia). Nevertheless, tight censorship does offer a degree of protection.

      “The foreigners who reside among you will rise above you higher and higher, but you will sink lower and lower… They will be the head, but you will be the tail. All these curses will come on you. They will pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you did not obey the Lord your God and observe the commands and decrees he gave you. They will be a sign and a wonder to you and your descendants forever. Because you did not serve the Lord your God joyfully and gladly in the time of prosperity, therefore in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and dire poverty, you will serve the enemies the Lord sends against you. He will put an iron yoke on your neck until he has destroyed you” (Deuteronomy 28:43-48).

      Terrible words- but it is a terrible thing to mock the living God.

      • Simon Platt

        “Save the continent from utter moral degradation”? Islam? Have you been paying attention?

  • Lollia

    O yes sorry;-senile moment!

  • IanCad

    It took but a few days when Moses delayed his descent from Mt. Sinai for the people to demand false gods.

    Same today, without leadership the people degenerate fast. The faith nurtured for generations can be lost in a heartbeat.

    That this is tolerated in the CofE speaks ill of Welby. Unless stopped right now we can only look for more and greater excesses.

    “Vice is a monster of so frightful mien
    As to be hated needs but to be seen;
    Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,
    We first endure, then pity, then embrace.”
    Pope.

    • betteroffoutofit

      Though I think the “embrace” can be short-lived – so long as the embracers recognise the misery-making effects of the close contact.

    • Chefofsinners

      Well if it was written by the Pope, it must be right.

      • IanCad

        You’re putting me on the spot here, Chef. I have no idea which one of the eight Alexanders who sat in the Chair of St. Peter authored those wise words.

        • Chefofsinners

          Whoever it was, Peter won’t be best pleased when he gets back from his walk and finds they’ve also eaten his porridge and slept in his bed.

    • Lollia

      I can just imagine he people clamouring, “we want a false god,-yours doesn’t work”!

  • Royinsouthwest

    Then why are you here? You can interpret that question in at least two ways.

  • len

    ‘ “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot’.(Matthew 5 :13-16

    Pagans are in the church(again) and I don`t think the Church has even noticed or cared.

  • Inspector General

    That was gruesome!

    Philosophically speaking, to know good, you must have evil around to contrast it, and to be rejected. To illustrate, it’s just about the only use one can possibly think our very own unlovable homoflake Linus has being here.

    It’s been done before, you know. Fashion degenerates taking over a church. Albeit de-commissioned churches, but still one felt a sense of desecration. To have a church used that is currently the home of a living Christian community is somewhat disgusting. Somebody wearing a dog collar needs to be horsewhipped over this.

  • Inspector General

    Next to Gloucester Cathedral is a Satan shop. One joshes you not. Been there for decades. The proprietress, a rather middle aged silly thing in ones opinion was in a local free paper the other month whining about Christians praying outside her place, and even entering to give her a piece of their mind. She also has two girl teenage assistants. Virgins probably.

    Anyway, an Inspector often passes that way on the other side of the street, and went over for a closer at the time. Sure enough, the tired old window display, which was nearly as old as the shop itself, had been changed. So, if you want to part with £34 for a ravens leg bone, do call in…

    • Sarky

      ‘Virgins probably’. In Gloucester??

      • Inspector General

        You need a new name. The Inspector is warming to ‘the arse formerly known as Sarky’…Try it. See if it’s not too long…

        • Sarky

          I could be like Prince and use a symbol??

          • len

            I’ve got one in mind Sarky.

  • len

    Once a country turns away from Christianity it returns to its pagan roots.
    In a bookshop recently I was hard pressed to find a bible but there were all sorts of books on
    witchcraft , wizardry and the occult.There was even a book telling one how to cast spells.
    Our youth are well indoctrinated into’ Harry Potter’ and all sorts of horrendous video games, and the occult (rather than something to be avoided) is being embraced by those who know nothing of its dangers.
    The Church needs to be very careful it is not endorsing the occult by welcoming it though its doors.
    Meanwhile Halloween is lurking on the horizon.

    • Inspector General

      Christianity and the occult have much in common. Both appeal to man’s intuitive searching beyond the 5 senses. Something we are designed to do. Has to be so, as man is quite proud enough to consider himself the highest authority otherwise.

      The problem with the occult is that the forces involved, the so called earth forces, are unpredictable and uncontrollable. Compared to the beauty of our organised universe, where everything is regulated by the angelic ranks, that is.

      • betteroffoutofit

        Indeed; “angels” being mere messengers, the “angelic ranks” are regulated by God Himself!

    • Sarky

      Cant wait. Just got to get the costumes sorted.

    • Step11Recovery

      You have to be careful with these blanket condemnations.

      Paganism is quite definitely not synonymous with the occult. Paganism is a major part of our history – many Christian churches feature overt pagan imagery in their architecture. The Green Man and similar characters.

      I share with C. S. Lewis an enthusiasm for the Norse myths and legends but, like him, find the notion of actually believing in them ridiculous. Equally, one of my favourite films is The Wicker Man, a work of astonishing genius, but that enjoyment has yet to translate in to sacrificing policeman while wearing an animal mask.

      • Sarky

        I hope you’re talking about the original and no the dire re-make.

        • Step11Recovery

          Oh, absolutely. Though have both the original and the extended edition, plus two soundtrack albums. I avoided the remake with some determination.

  • carl jacobs

    Hellboy doesn’t bewitch viewers with the virtues of Lucifer worship and the benefits of a once-in-a-lifetime holiday in hell, does it?

    No, it punishes the viewer with bad writing, bad cinematography, bad plot, bad character development, and bad anything else I can think of.

    • Brian

      Apart from that, Mrs Lincoln, how did you enjoy the film?

  • Martin

    One has to wonder, when the authorities treat their churches as holy places; with altars, crosses and such; why they consider such events suitable.

  • Sir John Oldcastle

    Satanic. Masonic. Different faces of the same thing.

    • Martin

      Didn’t I read somewhere that clergy of the CoE were forbidden to be Masons?

      • Brian

        Archbishop Geoffrey Fisher of blessed memory was a Freemason. It is not likely that the CofE would forbid middle aged men to wear strange clothes and take part in odd rituals.

        • Martin

          Must have been the police then, oh, hold on ….

      • Anton

        That’s Roman Catholic clergy. The CoE was largely cleansed of freemasonry since its high point under Fisher, but I think there is no rule and a few still are.

      • magnolia

        Theoretically that is so, but it is insufficiently implemented, and often the question is not even asked, and all too frequently the shape of the beast is far too little known and understood; I think that is a fair summary.

        The nuts and bolts of an almost though not quite explicit ban are there, but they need lots of tightening. Also some of those higher up and more into the dark side try to sow dissension against those who would clip their wings, so that all too often the latter are preoccupied with fire-fighting, while few dioceses keep lists of these potential troublemakers to discount and counteract their comtumacious utterings

  • Murti Bing

    I have almost given up on the C of E, and it pains me to say this, but the organisation has so lost its way I wonder if it can ever be redeemed.

    What on earth would Cranmer (the real one) say?

    • Royinsouthwest

      Can these dead bones live?

      • Anna

        If Christians will humble themselves and repent for the sins of the church, yes.

      • betteroffoutofit

        I have had my problems with that doctrine! One isn’t sure that St. Andrew Holborn quite gets it though – I just checked their website and learned that, a few years ago, they cleared the Crypt of its corporeal remains….

        The ‘morphic resonance’ theories of Rupert Sheldrake have helped me towards accepting ‘resurrection of the body’, however; one begins to see how spiritual and physical connect. So — as long as this church can open its mentality towards the Spirit that originally inspired it, the possibility remains. Closed minds do seem to dominate the 21st century so far, though; and Satanic sects are increasingly common.

        • Anton

          I regarded morphic resonance as nonsense when I was an atheist and still do.

          • betteroffoutofit

            Thanks for the feedback – certainly, I expect some very intelligent people to respond in this way.

            Much of my acceptance depends on personal experience and observation, and it also fits with my understanding of wave theory. However, if one has no witness of non-verbal communication (e.g), I quite see that it’s difficult to believe.

            I must say, though — the development of non-physical thought, its conversion to audible wavelengths, and its further conversion to visible and material media by writing, do all inspire search for logical explanation!!!

          • betteroffoutofit

            [EDIT FOR ABOVE POST] …
            Disqus is rejecting my edits to the above post. The last paragraph should begin: “the development of seemingly non-physical thought” . . .

          • betteroffoutofit

            Thanks for the feedback – I quite see why many intelligent people react thusly!

            My own response to the ideas is based on personal experience and a search for explanations. As part of that, I had long suspected that animals tune into us as if by wavelengths*. I’m also intrigued about the processes by which consciousness manifests itself in mental imagery and verbal forms – thence to verbalisation and communication (via sound waves) – thence to visibility (via light waves) as written material, some of which is even electronically conveyed!
            I don’t find the idea of internal-external ‘fields’ of awareness incompatible with those realities, so I keep thinking about it and trying to revise some physics/chemistry while I’m at it!

            While remembering Platonic theory, Boethius, Celtic and Norse mythologies – to say nothing of Judaeo-Christian prophets – I also note that the business of ‘ESP’ has an age-old history which is not bounded by cultures. This suggests that there may be some grounds for considering its possible existence. Clearly, though, and as we see today: the concept is easily exploited by ‘alchemists,’ ‘magicians,’ politicians, etc. Clearly, too, it’s psychologically dangerous to individuals who misapply such a function by indulging personal fancy and will.
            So there are many reasons for suppressing involvement in the possibilities. Chief among them: we survive physically by concentrating on tangible reality.
            ___________________________
            * And yes, while SCUBA diving, I have sensed being stared at from behind … only to turn and see the shark that was responsible!

      • Chefofsinners

        They might make a half decent soup. Maybe.

  • carl jacobs

    I bet you liked Dune as well.

    • CliveM

      The books great.

      • carl jacobs

        True. On the other hand I couldn’t get more than 40 pages into Children of Dune. Remember however that we are seeking to help Sarky overcome his unfortunate burden. He is … how do we say this kindly … “cinematically challenged”.

        • CliveM

          I’m not in a position to judge Hellboy, I’ve never seen it!

          Agree regards Children of Dune!

      • Step11Recovery

        Well, I accept this is going to be a minority opinion but I think Dune (the David Lynch one) is a good film.

        That’s the not the right adjective but I’m unable to find a better one. I accept it is flawed, seriously in some aspects, but it has something that I’m unable to articulate that I find compelling.

        Hated it on first viewing and had to be made to watch it again by a friend who would insist on it’s merits. It’s been a slow, gradual appreciation, but it wins on sets, music and general atmosphere.

        • carl jacobs

          It’s incomprehensible if you haven’t read the book. It’s infuriatingly non-canonical if you have. And what’s-his-face (the main character) only wears one expression through the whole movie.

        • CliveM

          It’s been decades since I last saw it (at least!!), I do remember I thought the sets were good, but some of the acting………….

  • Inspector General

    Just an afterthought about those gruelling images Cranmer has put us through today {Shakes fist at his image}

    For some reason, weak human stock is held dear. Humiliate them further by painting their faces and dressing them in fools costumes. We humans are a strange lot, Inspector excepted…

    • carl jacobs

      Inspector excepted…

      Ummm …. Yeah.

      • Inspector General

        Everyone is queer, Carl, except for thee and me. Even then, thee’s a bit queer…

        • betteroffoutofit

          Gosh – I thought only old Yorkies knew that one!!!!!

          • Inspector General

            Yorkshire exiles (or are they colonists). They’re everywhere!

          • betteroffoutofit

            Even in Barnsley – where I heard it 🙂

          • betteroffoutofit

            Even in Barnsley – where I last heard it 🙂

  • Chefofsinners

    Total rubbish. These photos are from the last General Synod. That’s definitely Sentamu in the Madonna bra.

    • Father David

      Ouch! Tad harsh, that man.

  • Anton

    COME OUT OF HER MY PEOPLE

  • On the subject of fashion and clothing: The Archbishop of Canterbury says that he does not have a problem with a boy wearing a dress.
    Satan has taken over the C of E.

    http://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/nick-ferrari/boy-in-a-dress-is-not-a-problem-archbishop-welby/

    • David

      The A of C advised that the boy be faithful to his convictions, or some such hyper -individualistic nonsense. How very post-modern and liberal of him. Many parts of the C of E have been infiltrated by The Great Deceiver. Some parts remain loyal to Christ.

      • Which parts would that be then?

        • David

          The parts that preach the undiluted Gospel and, as a result, are growing. Whilst almost all the bishops, who the media turn to for comments, are liberals there continues to be, ignored by the media of course, a good prorportion of dedicated orthodox, Biblically conservative vicars working hard to spread God’s Word – in short a remnant always remains !

    • Watchman

      Deuteronomy 22:5
      “A woman is not to wear male clothing, and a man is not to put on a woman’s garment, for everyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD your God.

      • Sarky

        I thought there was a new covenant??

        • Watchman

          And your point is….?

          • Sarky

            Those rules no longer apply.
            Or are women going to hell for wearing jeans?

          • Watchman

            So what rules do apply?

          • Sarky

            You’re the christian.

          • Anton

            And you are the one saying something contradicts the rules…

          • Watchman

            Thank you, Anton, you beat me to it!

          • Chefofsinners

            Reluctant though I am to offer Sarky a helping hand, he’s right. The rules are as in 2 Tim 2:9-10: “…women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.”

            It is important that we base church doctrine on the New Testament, not the old.

          • Watchman

            Chef, Paul was merely giving advice and not creating doctrine. Ostentation doesn’t become any of us and women are more prone than men to dress in a manner likely to draw attention to themselves. How and what we wear betrays what we think is important about ourselves. Paul was also making the point that good works are more important than how we present ourselves. These are not rules, lest we become legalistic; they are fatherly advice on moderation.

          • Chefofsinners

            No scripture is advice. It is the word of God.

          • Watchman

            Sorry, Chef, Proverbs is full of advice and also full of advice about taking advice.

            Proverbs 13:10
            Arrogance leads to nothing but strife, but wisdom is gained by those who take advice.

            Can’t advice be inspired advice?

          • Chefofsinners

            Inspired advice is doctrine. Inspired advice is not to be lowered to “Paul was merely giving advice.” That way lies every heresy known to man.

          • Watchman

            Don’t be silly, making all advice doctrine leaves you with a Pharisaic rule book and a doctrinaire legalistic religion that Islamist would covet.

            I have no time for your religion; my faith is in a risen Christ not a rule book.

          • Chefofsinners

            Making some of God’s words less important than others sets you up as His judge. I have no time for that kind of religion, so-called. It is the same old sin of pride and the same old rejection of God’s authority, clothed in a fig leaf. You can’t have the risen Christ without His rule book. He is either your Lord or He isn’t. Learn of Him, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

          • Watchman

            Do you have a rule book for all your relationships? I pity your friends if this is how you want your relationships to be defined. Yes, He is my Lord but He is also a friend in whom I can confide. You obviously belong to a strain of man made religion who had defined the Godhead according to a set of doctrines. If I want to know anything I don’t consult a doctrinal rule book but the Word of God direct; it’s much more reliable.

          • Chefofsinners

            By which I presume you mean you ignore the bible and wait for a voice in your head or some feeling to tell you that you can do exactly as you please.

          • Watchman

            You’re being ridiculous because you know what I mean. The Word of God is my bible, as you know. Why do you need to distort and deliberately misunderstand?

          • Chefofsinners

            No, I genuinely thought you meant the Word who became flesh, following your previous statement about “a risen Christ, not a rule book”.
            So then if you rely on the bible why do you only regard it as advice?

          • Watchman

            Because I live under grace and not under law. The establishment of the church took place in the New Testament as a number of independent ekklesia where women were told to keep silent and wear hats. This is not doctrine in the majority of denominations. There was no suggestion of overall control but men have taken upon themselves to have centralised control. What has happened to these items as doctrine. In each case men have decided that they know better. This looks like heresy to me “each doing what was right in his own eyes”.

          • Chefofsinners

            Living under grace, not under law is a perfect reason why your original quote from Deuteronomy should not necessarily be taken as a rule for today. However Jesus words are plain “If you love me, keep my commandments.” Those commandments are found in the New Testament, given both directly by Christ and by the Spirit of Christ, through the authors of the epistles.
            I think you will find that for all but the last 50 years of church history women in most churches did keep silent and wear headcoverings, so that on early editions of Blind Date Cilla Black was still asking whether she needed to “buy a hat” as a euphemism for a wedding taking place.
            Mankind has indeed decided that he knows better on numerous occasions since he first did so in the Garden of Eden. The results have never been good.

          • Watchman

            Sarky, Jésus came, not to abolish the law but to fulfil it. In doing so He summarised the law by saying that we should first love God and then our neighbour as ourselves. If we love someone we try to find out what they like and what upsets them and if it upsets God that men and women try to pervert the gender distinction that He created them He will get upset and that is not loving Him. This is moral law and we have to understand that moral law, unlike civil law and ceremonial law stands for all time because it is an affront to the Creator that we offend His Creation.

          • magnolia

            Women wearing jeans are so ubiquitous that a woman wearing jeans is making no statement. Women with very short male haircuts and male-cut suits and wearing brogues on the other hand are…. Jeans anyway even in the early days were more of a practical thing, especially on farms, than any cross-dressing oddity- a crucial difference.

          • Maalaistollo

            Depends how they look. ‘Sure deck your lower limbs in pants; Yours are the limbs, my sweeting. You look divine as you advance– Have you seen yourself retreating?’ (Ogden Nash)

          • Women wear jeans that are made for women which would not fit men, and men’s jeans don’t fit women properly. Jeans were originally a worker’s uniform.

    • Don Benson

      Marie,

      Justin Welby’s instinct for making the wrong call on this type of issue is sadly consistent. Whenever he gives an interview you can just hear his tormented brain clicking its way through the long list of politically correct
      causes to which he has subjected himself; eventually an ill-judged answer emerges signalling ‘virtue’ and vacuity in equal measure. How long can he go on like it?

      In this case, he gives no thought to the mental welfare of the poor confused 6 year old children who are being forced by their teachers to act out a nonsense in order to confirm the self evident delusion of one of their classmates. This kind of abuse is unconscionable.

  • David

    What an ugly bunch of models !
    My grandmother had an oft used phrase, she’d say ” that’s as ugly as sin”, about something that was wrong. She was a wise old woman.

    • Royinsouthwest

      It is strange how people, especially women, assume that models are very attractive. Some are; many are not. None of the females in the photos above would make the average man feel tempted to turn his head for another look after walking past them in the street.

    • Anton

      Ugly clothes and makeup, really. They’d look good in jeans in a pub.

  • Father David

    These images remind me of naught more than the Vatican Fashion Show in Federico Fellini’s film Roma. I particularly liked “The Little Sisters of Purgatory”. Under Pope Francis all the Benedictine Bling has been banished into the Vatican closet. Francis, like his namesake from Assisi prefers a much more simple style. I wonder, however, if his successor will reintroduce the triple tiara, Nubians waving ostrich feather fans and the sedia gestatoria?

  • Paul Correa

    A preview of the liberal’s eternity.

  • Skidger

    Says it all about the numties that run Wells Cathedral.

  • Sarky

    Well, the devil may have the best tunes, but his fashion sense leaves alot to be desired.

    • Chefofsinners

      Good one.

    • magnolia

      They do all look utterly, thoroughly miserable. Maybe the models themselves hate the clothes. After all, what’s not to dislike?

      I guess they only did it for the money. But “the wages of sin is death” and they look deathly about it already. They need prayer.

      An exorcism of place, the church building here, is the appropriate closing of this drama.

      • Anton

        They are told to look miserable. What’s interesting would be why.

        • CliveM

          I think it’s meant to suggest “attitude “.

          • betteroffoutofit

            Ah! That old American “Addatood”! I still don’t know what it is/means.

          • bluedog

            Attitude is the precursor to receipt of Respect.

      • Lollia

        I think they are trying to look “Gothic” or something, in order to go with the outfit.

  • Anton

    Indeed. Although my favourite films are Napoleon (Abel Gance), The Best Intentions (Bergman/August) and Dr Strangelove, I still enjoy Rocky IV, Deep Impact and Independence Day I.

    • alternative_perspective

      I have a soft spot for the Back to the Future Trilogy; Ghostbusters 1 AND 2 and more recently I am still greatly impressed by the Matrix and Inception. Independence Day 2 was not nearly as bad as I’d been warned – I quite liked it. But Ironman 2 and 3 and the increasingly poor Transformers franchise are nearly unwatchable.

    • carl jacobs

      300! Anton! Say it ain’t so.

      • Anton

        I certainly don’t think it was so! But it’s in my “good crap” category, together with Where Eagles Dare.

        • carl jacobs

          But it’s an historical abomination. And the writing … Someone was paid to write this, Anton.

          It’s an honor to die at your side.

          It’s an honor to have lived at yours.

          • Anton

            C’mon Carl, they had a microphone right there…

          • CliveM

            Visually it looked like it was full of Orcs and Trolls! It did pass the time though.

          • Anton

            It would have passed anyway.

            (© Samuel Beckett, Waiting For Godot.)

          • Chefofsinners

            Well thank you for saying so. I always knew, of course.

          • Anton

            I’m expected to take this critique from someone who enjoyed reading Dune?

          • carl jacobs

            Dune is an acknowledged classic.

          • Anton

            Good for those who do so, but I acknowledge it as crap.

          • Pubcrawler

            “Someone was paid to write this, Anton.”

            And it sure wasn’t Herodotus.

        • Pubcrawler

          I thought it was execrable, from start to ‘please, God, let this tosh end soon’ finish.

          • CliveM

            Based on a graphic novel I understand.

          • Pubcrawler

            Indeed. Quid multa?

          • Anton

            You could always walk out, you know. I have done so to more than one film. When I buy a newspaper I don’t regard it as my duty to read every article in it.

          • Pubcrawler

            Had my cause for watching it been recreation pure and simple I wouldn’t have wasted time and money in the first place.

          • Anton

            Why then did you go to see it? NB I’m not expecting the answer “research into ancient history”…

          • Pubcrawler

            I did not ‘go’ anywhere, I watched it at home on DVD. As for why, suffice it to say that I resisted for a long time, but eventually felt the need to see for myself the source of some of the utter bollocks about that battle and about Sparta that I kept coming across online. (Both have long been a particular interest of mine.)

            Historical research? I’d done far more about this episode than most will ever do before I’d even left school.

    • Step11Recovery

      Independence Day. Magnificent.

      I have to nominate my favourite SF film though, ,Aliens,, a rare example of a sequel bettering the original. Was downhill from there unfortunately.

      • carl jacobs

        Nah. Alien is the best Sci Fi flick ever made. Aliens was too much a standard action movie.

        • Anton

          2001: A Space Odyssey.

          Certainly the best opening sequence.

        • CliveM

          Bladerunner

  • Dolphinfish

    Sorry, I know I’m always on this chord, but for the millionth and one time – and I’m not noting this with any degree of schadenfreude – what did anyone think was going to happen after Martin Luther put his own judgement before the Church’s? Does it STILL not register that this kind of thing is the natural working out of Protestantism?

    • Anton

      The natural working out of a return to scripture is a return to gospel Christianity from trash like the worship (sorry, veneration) of relics and prayers to Mary. Any church can go wrong – like mediaeval Rome and 21st century Canterbury – and the solution is always a return to scripture, often via St Paul.

  • Anton

    Incidentally tomorrow is the day a few Christians reckon is going to be apocalyptic, based on signs in the heavens:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revelation_12_Sign

    I must say that the theory has more going for it than some, but when all is said and done I think it is wrong. Let’s see…

    • Linus

      In other words:

      “If the Rapture happens tomorrow, I’m safe because as the world’s most perfect Pixtian, Sky Pixie has to save me.

      “I’m confident it will happen, but I don’t want to ruin my (self-promoted) reputation as the most astute Pixtian on the planet, and given what happened to Harold Camping, it would be imprudent to appear too confident about my prediction.

      “So I’ll hedge my bets and I’ll say I think it may happen so that if it doesn’t, I won’t look like a deluded fool.

      “Of course, this time tomorrow I’ll probably be sitting on Sky Pixie’s right hand in Pixie Paradise lording it over all the lesser Pixtians who may have been good enough to save, but can’t compare to me. Because mine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever, a-me.”

      • Anton

        Thus spake the sexular humanist, who reckons he understands the Bible better than Christians.

        • Lollia

          Anton-I caught a glimpse just now of you wanting me to enlarge on what I was saying about animal sexuality,but then lost it again;–so I am butting in here:

          Prima facie, one might doubt if anal and oral sex amongst other animals has any adaptive value and would not therefore be naturally selected for per se. On the other hand, it is definitely of adaptive value to orally clean your ano-genital area, or get a partner (or mother) to do it for you, for health reasons, getting rid of parasites etc, and therefore being fit enough to find a mate;-and as other animals don’t have our technology,–running hot water, soap and towels,-they do it the only way they can,–orally and manually. Erotic sensations while being orally cleansed would very likely be selected for in order to encourage hygienic practices.
          In South Africa, (where I grew up), one can observe baboons inspecting each other’s perineal areas and manually “tidying them up” on a quid pro quo basis (ie you scratch by back and I’ll scratch yours); it seems likely that this would lead to erotic (including homosexual0 behaviour.,–but I am not an expert. Ask David Attenborough or Richard Dawkins.

      • Chefofsinners

        Someone’s sounding rattled. Just imagine being left all alone on the Cranmer blog with no-one to insult, and years of being totally wrong to reflect on. It would be even worse for you than the pissoire moment. Hell indeed.

        • Linus

          If you do all disappear tomorrow then it will be I who’s gone to Pixie Paradise, or something very much like it.

          But something tells me that, Rapture or no Rapture, none of you are going anywhere tomorrow.

          You’all all be “left behind”. Of course you will, because there’s nowhere to go. But even if there were, why would Sky Pixie elect to spend eternity with a bunch of judgmental, condemnatory Pharisees?

          • Chefofsinners

            When He could spend it with you? I wonder.

            We are different, you and I. I know I am a judgmental, condemnatory Pharisee. You are yet to admit it.

          • Linus

            If you think I have never admitted to being judgmental and condemnatory, then you’ve never read my posts.

            I routinely admit to it. There are times when judgmentalism and condemnation are the most appropriate responses to a given situation or person. When dealing with homophobic bigots like you for instance, an outright condemnation is the best way to take you down.

            Look at the number of public figures who’ve had to make groveling apologies for homophobic remarks following an outcry from the LGBT community and its allies. This kind of condemnation is singularly effective because it hits public figures where they’re most sensitive to pain: in their pocketbook.

            I’m proud to judge and condemn people like you. And I make no bones about doing so. I’m not a Pixtian. I’m under no obligation to follow Pixtian rules. But you are, and still you judge and condemn..

            This is what makes you a Pharisee. And an unrepentant one at that. You think it’s perfectly acceptable to lie to the world, to your Sky Pixie and even to yourself. As long as you cry “Lord! Lord!”, you think everything will be OK and you can put the boot into anyone you like.

            That’s not Pixtianism as I understand it. It’s self-worship, which is another thing Sky Pixie is supposed to hate. If he really does exist, considering the number of unrepented sins you routinely commit without any hesitation, you’re doomed.

            If you think it’s unfair that you should be held to a higher standard than me, go complain to your Sky Pixie. You believe he made the rules so go bitch at him. Or ignore him and do what you like. That’s what you usually do. That’s what makes you the Pharisee you are.

          • Chefofsinners

            So much bitterness, Linus. Until you find forgiveness for your own sins you will continue to live in malice and envy, hating and being hated.

          • Linus

            See how the tuppeny ha’penny jokester goes from tuppenny ha’penny humour to tuppenny ha’penny moralising at the drop of a hat?

            Whatever you do is always done on a small scale, isn’t it? As befits a small man. Small jokes, small morals, small mind.

          • Chefofsinners

            As opposed to your own vast and eternal significance?

          • Linus

            Apart from a bit of loose change left over from my last (and one hopes, final) stay in the UK, I hold no Sterling. I moved out of that currency when the Brexit referendum was lost. Considering its plummeting value, I doubt I’ll ever touch it again. Or at least not until the Brexit débâcle is well and truly over and Britain has come crawling back to the EU to beg for terms.

            Sterling won’t be worth anything until that happens, which given May’s plaintive and clearly desperate speech in Florence, looks more and more inevitable. The two year “transition period” will become five years, then ten years, and you’ll end up staying permanently: on significantly less advantageous terms than you enjoy now. No representation in EU structures, no influence over EU legislation and regulations, no voting rights, no veto, but all the costs of membership and no more rebate. We’ll get to fund ourselves with British taxpayers’ money and what will you get? A temporary free trade deal that might end up being permanent, but only to your enormous political and financial cost. Britain will be seen as a tributary state beholden to the EU. My how the once mighty will have fallen.

            I wonder, will your queen make the trip to Brussels once a year to perform a state kowtow to M. Juncker and the assembled heads of government of the 27? The full three kneelings and nine knockings of the head, no less. That was the tradition in imperial China when tributary nations came calling with gifts that symbolised their subservience. We should revive it, although if the old duck wanted to get her son or even her grandson to do it for her considering her advanced age and arthritic knees, I’m sure nobody would object.

          • Chefofsinners

            Theresa May yet betray the British people, but the people themselves will never bow to Brussels. Whatever the outcome, we should heed the words of Jesus: Lay up for yourself treasures in heaven.

          • Linus

            As long as they get your money, I doubt those in Brussels will care a great deal about what the British think. A never-ending “transition period” will suit them just fine. All of the money without having to make room for the fractious, uncooperative and recalcitrant British at any EU table. They’ll be in Pixie Paradise!

            Some functionary like Barnier can deal with you while the 27 get on with governing themselves quite comfortably thanks to all that British moolah. Think of all the wonderful EU sponsored initiatives we’ll be able to afford. Free boob jobs for aspiring porn stars, for example. Free abortions too, I shouldn’t wonder. All paid for out of your pocket while you have no say in how the money is spent.

            Serfdom isn’t given nearly as much attention as it should be when the economic status of client nations is being considered.

          • Chefofsinners

            I am beginning to understand the reported pleading of the Germans to the British: “Please don’t leave us with the French.”
            The mood has changed in Germany, as I am sure you are aware, with the far right on the rise. As ever, when the voice of reason is gagged, the voice of extremism is raised.
            Likewise in France, the optimism around the Macron presidency is quickly turning to disillusionment. See you on the outside.

          • Linus

            Reported where? In that clarion of impartial reporting « The UKIP Times and Nigel Farage Fan Club »? If that’s where you look for your news, you’ll never want for moonshine.

            The truth is that Germany is as glad to see the back of you as any of us are. No more carping, complaining Brits cluttering up the corridors in Brussels and blocking every EU initiative out of sheer bloodymindedness. And as we get to keep your money, how much better could the deal be?

            I mean, quite honestly, May might as well have taken off her M&S granny pants and let Juncker, Barnier and anyone else brave (or foolhardy) enough to have a crack at her give her the jolly good rogering she appears to want from Europe. Barnier in particular must be panting with exhaustion. First he takes Davis in every position known to man and slaps him around a bit into the bargain, now he’s had his way with Davis’s boss. Next thing you know Boris will be making seductive eyes at him. That’s about your only chance now: to take out our chief negotiator with a heart attack in mid-thrust.

            Meanwhile Macron is doing what all recently elected French presidents do: watch their popularity ratings plummet like an aneroid barometer before a typhoon. There’ll be strikes and demonstrations – there always are. Someone’s always upset after an election, and emotions need to be expressed. Deranged communists like Mélenchon will huff and puff and blow. Le Pen may even stir beneath the wreckage of her political career and yell a few curses the president’s way. But the reforms will take place. Macron has the majority and a few communists throwing tantrums on the boulevards of Paris won’t change that.

            His priorities at the moment are reforming labour regulations and cooperating with Germany to drive forward further European integration. Side issues like Brexit can be handled by functionaries like Barnier. And if you tire him out with your excessive demands to be constantly and humiliatingly rogered in every orifice over and over again, he has plenty of deputies who can prendre le relais. In teams if necessary. Round the clock. I have a feeling that even that won’t satisfy you, gluttons for punishment that you are.

          • Chefofsinners

            Stockholm syndrome. That’s what you’ve got. You have been so long languishing in the dungeon of the EU that you can no longer even imagine a world outside, where the sunlight of freedom warms your cheek. So much is mundane economics, but the significant truth is that your religious views are another, more subtle and dangerous prison.

          • Linus

            Stockholm is a lovely city. If faced with a choice between Stockholm and London, I’ll take Stockholm any day. Stockholm is in Sweden, you see. And Sweden is a European partner. A friend. A country we can rely on.

          • Anton

            To what standard do *you* think you should be held, and why?

          • carl jacobs

            All men exercise judgment. Indeed all men must render judgments. Morality is otherwise incomprehensible. But the standard of judgment , and the authority behind it … Aye, there’s the rub. Any fool can judge. But who is the man who judges righteously and with authority?

          • Chefofsinners

            Indeed.
            “Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?”

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            Hello…

        • Anton

          His response is due to my asking him the same question seven times on the last thread but one. He at least is honest enough not to lie in answering it.

          • bluedog

            It’s an excellent question and one for which few atheists have an answer.

          • Anton

            He may have the opportunity again.

      • Inspector General

        Do allow an admiring Inspector to bathe in the warmth of your contented atheist homosexuality…and here’s some news to cheer…

        “Mad grannies trannys have found a marvelous way to shift the blame for their high (self-inflicted) mortality rate and it’s brilliant”. (did you like the PN headline style used there).

        It’s being transferred over to intelligent normal people who have studied medicine and surgery for years to aid humanity. You militants have no shame, sir!

        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        “Uneducated doctors are ‘killing the transgender community’
        http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/09/21/uneducated-doctors-are-killing-the-transgender-community/

        • Linus

          Poor old fool, you know I never click on anything you link to.

          I have no idea what you’re referring to, which, if it’s a real story, will bear no relation to the twisted explanation you’ve given of it here. They never do.

          Gibber away about whatever fictitious gay or trans-themed conspiracy theory constitutes the latest bee in your homophobic bonnet. It makes no more sense than the background noise one might hear in places like Bedlam and Broadmoor.

          • Inspector General

            You silly old bugger. Don’t you know, for all your faults, we love you…

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            There are many forms of love, dear Inspector, so which one are you offering, and do I need to have a cold bucket of water to hand?

          • Inspector General

            As Christians, we must love our brother Linus, Mrs Proudie. For he, as we, is made in the image of God. But if he sodomises our young, we’ll kill him.

        • Anton

          Inspector, here is the staggeringly graphic testimony of an ex-gay who found Christ:

          http://josephsciambra.com/surviving-gaybarely/

          • Inspector General

            Forgive an Inspector, Anton, for he could only read part way through the sadness. This is what happens to callow youth at a time when homosexuality is praised and admired from the political top. For their sake, this bizarre indulgence of that unhealthy lifestyle must stop.

          • Anton

            I am trying to relieve you of your self-imposed burden of spending time at Pink News. I doubt that anything at PN could give more information on the sexuality involved, and this story has a happy ending, not a sad one.

          • Inspector General

            The Inspector is of the old guard. At our very gates. The ELITE, sir!

          • James M

            And, when to fail to adore and laud and magnify it is fast becoming a heinous offence, so that whoseover will not fall down and worship it shall be cast forthwith into the burning fiery furnace of popular (?) disapproval.

          • Anna

            True. I couldn’t bear to read beyond the first few paragraphs.

          • Lollia

            Do you think Linus is being maligned as a practitioner of “atheist homosexuality”?–see above. I find this is a common logical fallacy among many Christians,-conflating sex and atheism. Atheism just means “non-Theism”;-nothing to do with homosexuality. Elementary I would have thought.

          • Anton

            I’m not sure I understand your question. I call him sexular as a response to his comments about Pixtianity, that’s all.

            The Bible clearly regards homosexual acts as sinful. (The secular gays who understand this and hate the Bible for it actually understand the scriptures better than the ‘gay Christian’ movement!) However the New Testament makes clear that sinful acts spring out of human nature as it is today, and that all persons are sinners in one way or another. I have no wish to single out gays.

            There is, however, a dispute between gays and evangelicals because we live in a democracy, in which lobby groups can influence the law, and the two groups take differing views of what the law should be and what should be taught in schools.

          • Lollia

            Yes I see what you mean. Do secular gays really Hate the Bible,-or are they just indifferent to it? Homosexuality is also rife among other animals, and like humans, the gay animals play their part in generally supporting the clan; (I think they are more bisexual than gay). I suppose non breeding drones and worker bees are sort of gay,-but are they therefore Sinners?

            Nearly at the end of Kline now. I note with amusement, that Pure Maths is very similar to Christianity ( as well as having been influenced by it),-in that it is what I call a “closed logical, self-referential loop, disconnected from the external real world”–and that its propositions become ever more fantastic,-in the same way.

          • Anton

            Do secular gays really Hate the Bible,-or are they just indifferent to it?

            Fair enough; I guess you’d better ask them, not me. But Peter Tatchell bothered to disrupt an Archbishop’s Easter sermon to protest.

            Homosexuality is also rife among other animals

            So it is said, largely on the basis of people seeing one cow mount another viewed from a car it seems, forgetting that cows are female. When you say that homosexuality is rife among animals, do you mean anal or oral sex to orgasm?

            I have deep concern about the split that has opened between so-called pure and applied mathematics. Apart from anything else, the language in which pure mathematicians write is incredibly unfriendly to read unless you are another pure mathematician, and this was not so even in the 1950s. I do not believe it is necessary for them to use such abstract terminology. More importantly, if mathematics is the systematic science of pattern, then the patterns found in nature are always going to be richer than the patterns found by human introspection. (A theist would add that the mind of God revealed in nature can think up and deploy richer patterns than the mind of man, but the argument still stands without this add-on.) I am concerned that pure mathematicians have cut off their air supply and that eventually they will need to return to physics for inspiration. This also, of course, explains the “unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics” – which is where we started on a previous thread.

          • Lollia

            If you have ant doubts about animal homosexual behaviour you should watch some David Attenborough documentaries and other naturalists and evolutionary biologists.
            It mainly manifests as bonding behaviour and mutual masturbation;-and why not?-all sensual creatures like to feel physical pleasure. My Boxers (dogs) love massage and vigorous stroking -(while being bathed), and obviously find it erotic.
            Yes I had been playing with the ideas of giving a talk to my U3A philosophy group on Eugene Wigner’s “Unreasonable effectiveness—etc”. Thanks for your input on the subject

          • Anton

            Quite! May I press you to answer my question, though: When you say that homosexuality is rife among animals, do you mean oral or anal sex to orgasm?

          • Lollia

            Ah thanks; it was lost but now is found. Did you see my “answer” which I inserted elsewhere? Without trying to find it again or re-type it from memory, the essence of it was that ano-genital homo-eroticism is likely to be auto-erotic in origin (and proceeding to orgasm), in order to promote health and hygiene,-which itself is adaptive,-ie for being attractive to a potential mate, and therefore breeding lots of new babies; (what I call the “Darwinian Imperative”. The homoeroticism is therefore a kind of practice run for finding a heterosexual mate.
            You see dogs also “practising” on other dogs, even if of the same sex.
            In humans this translates as,–an unhygienic smelly person is unlikely to get a mate.

          • Lollia

            I presume this twice repeated question is in error? I have answered it twice already. Obviously other animals have not developed human sophistication,– including sexual practices. Humans have raised sex to an art form (much to the annoyance of Leviticus & Co), in the eternal search for enhanced sensuality;(our relatively hairless skins assist greatly in this pursuit); this, and all our other achievements, explains why we have “gone forth and multiplied” so efficiently. Time for more efficient population control,–unencumbered by religious proscriptions against oral contraception, the morning-after pill, and lies about condoms causing AIDS)..

          • Lollia

            The original proscriptions upon homosexual behaviour in Leviticus and Deuteronomy were surely for the reason that it was a waste of breeding time?—when “going forth and multiplying ” was essential in order to outbreed surrounding hostile tribes, and stop them stealing your sheep.
            In modern times we no longer are trying to outbreed everyone else in order that our “tribe” can compete and survive,–and therefore the proscription is irrelevant. On the contrary we now practice birth control instead. So instead of worshipping an alleged Divine Command in the O.T. we should allow people to love each other any way they choose, (within the bounds of Health and Hygiene of course.)
            (Maybe this is the origin of the slander about all atheists being Queers?)

          • Anton

            I am an adult convert from atheism!

            The fact that homosexual acts were capital offences in Leviticus suggests that more than a waste of breeding time is behind the reasoning of the Author. They are also described as toevah.

          • Lollia

            We always hear about converts from atheism. Wouldn;’t be more balanced to also refer to the converts TO atheism?–especially in the light of the most recent statistics.

          • Anton

            Yes, go to China and see which way the traffic is.

          • Lollia

            Cultural evolution proceeds like biological evolution by adaptive radiation. Chinese Christianity will evolve into yet another “heresy”,-and when the alternative Christianities have speciated far enough apart to get on each other’s nerves, there will occur Round 2 of the Tai-Ping massacre of around 1850, which has been called the “bloodiest war in history”,–between two opposing sub-species of Chinese Christianity. and not only that,–eventually the traditional Chinese belief systems of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism , and even Chinese Communism will rebel against the take-over of Chinese identity by a foreign religion, and there will be religious slaughter “like the world has never seen” -to paraphrase Donald Trump.
            Already we see that papal Roman Catholicism is being kept out of the affairs of “indigenous” Chinese Catholicism in order to resist this foreign take-over. have you learned nothing from the current state of Christianity in the middle-east, and the reaction against it by radical Islam and ISIS?
            Gloat while you can; “Apres nous le slaufgter

          • Anton

            I’ve already explained to you that political Christianity is bastardised Christianity and I hold no brief for it. Before you talk about different Christianities there is only one and it is described in the Bible, and if you think I am wrong and some other Christian is right then I’m not going to hold a debate with another Christian viewpoint by proxy; read the Bible and decide for yourself.

          • Lollia

            Isn’t it a bit credulous to believe “gospel” accounts written at least 40 years after the alleged event,-which possibly never even happened, by anonymous authors in a different language, without secretaries, tape-recorders, mobile phone videos, televised interviews etc?
            What about the earliest heresy “Docetism”?–they believed that Christ on the cross only appeared as such, but wasn’t really God, because mere humans cannot kill God; as for resurrection, they had to keep up with all the other dying and resurrecting gods and Roman Emperors,-otherwise what’s the point?

      • Sarky

        Considering the age of most contributors, its more likely to be the rupture.

        • Linus

          ROFL!

          Yes, imagine them all popping at the seams as Sky Pixie heaves them up out of their wheelchairs dragging oxygen tanks and other assorted medical equipment behind them.

          Pixie Paradise will resemble a 16th century hospital emergency room trying to cope with a mass influx of Inquisition victims. Lots of stretched bodies lying about the place.

          Given the amount of material there is to work with, the American contingent will be most elongated of all. Indeed their heads and shoulders might arrive at the Pixly Gates before their voluminous nether regions leave the ground, giving new meaning to the term “stairway to heaven”.

          That’ll be our chance, Sarky. By dint of ice pick and crampon, we’ll be able to shimmy our way up these living ladders and sneak into Pixie Paradise, there to act as grit in their eternal eyeballs or stones in their everlasting shoes.

          Almost makes me wish the Rupture would actually happen instead of being just another gibbering Pixtian delusion.

          • Anton

            Not many of us believe what you think we believe about it. By speaking as you do you are making a fool of yourself.

          • Anton

            I might have been born in the late 1950s (as mentioned here before) but I am on no prescription medication and have no chronic pain. All by grace of God. I trust you are in similar health?

          • Linus

            My health is perfect. But most readers here are of advanced years and more likely than not need medical attention. The various bits of equipment keeping them alive must weigh a ton. Odd they need all that paraphernalia if they trust in Sky Pixie, don’t you think?

            In any case, you’re well on the wrong side of 50, so your day will come soon enough. Pray hard that Sky Pixie will rapture you before you’re attached to a heavy oxygen tank or strapped into a wheelchair. All that extra weight as he hoists you up into Pixie Paradise may stretch you out like a giraffe, and that would be an awkward look for all eternity, don’t you think?

            Less than 6 hours to go before you have to admit this was yet another occasion on which the Rapture didn’t happen. You’ll be here tomorrow fretting over Sky Pixie’s failure to recognise and reward your (delusion of) Pixtian perfection. When is he coming for you? Why won’t he buck his ideas up and get here soon? Doesn’t he know how much he owes you?

            Ungrateful little wisp of nothingness, isn’t he?

          • Anton

            1. It is a matter of record on this blog that I said, ahead of September 23rd, that I disagreed with the prediction that a semi-apocalyptic world event would happen on it.

            2. The prediction was not specifically to do with the Rapture.

            3. I and many other Christians do not hold to the timing of the Rapture that you have probably taken from popular trash films and novels. Google “pre-Tribulation Rapture” (this view) and “post-Tribulation Rapture” (the view I hold) if you wish to inform yourself better.

          • Linus

            See above for my general opinion of your weak attempt at self-justification.

            More specifically:

            1) it is a matter of record on this blog that you said the predictions regarding 23 September 2017 were more plausible than most others, the intimation being that they were therefore more credible.

            2) the predictions were clearly interpreted by Pixtians as being the Rapture.

            3) nothing could interest me less than the Big and Little-Endian arguments Pixtians have amongst themselves over the minutiae of Pixtian dogma. It matters little whether you think the Rapture will take place before or after the Tribulation when both events are figments of your own imagination.

            Talking to Pixtians is sometimes reminiscent of discussions with Tolkien fans, who shriek and spit at each other over the pointless detail of their mythos too. Did the Dark Lord build the foundations of Barad-dûr before or after he forged the One Ring? I’ve seen spotty teenagers come to blows over that controversy. Obsession/compulsive disorders are the most socially isolating of all, are they not? How lonely you must be.

          • Anton

            You are contradicting not me but yourself. Can you see where?

          • Linus

            I can see a man painted into a corner trying to adopt a condescending tone in order to discredit his opponent’s arguments as unworthy of attention.

          • Anton

            Odd blinkers you have!

            By the way, what about my question about what standards you believe *you* should be held to? You are quite right to seek to hold Christians to biblical standards (although you don’t understand those standards very well), but what standards do you believe you should uphold, and why?

          • Linus

            Be held to? By whom? There is no Sky Pixie to hold me to any standards. So who’s going to tell me I must obey this rule or that rule?

            Secular authority is the only enforcer of standards that I know of. And the standards it holds us to are a compromise worked out between the various groups that make up society, taking into account their various belief systems and giving them each the opportunity to live out their belief system, as long as that belief system doesn’t prevent others from living according to their belief systems.

            I’m willing to be held to that standard of behaviour as long as it respects my right to live as I see fit without harming others. In a diverse culture there is no other workable model.

          • Anton

            the standards it holds us to are a compromise worked out between the various groups that make up society, taking into account their various belief systems and giving them each the opportunity to live out their belief system, as long as that belief system doesn’t prevent others from living according to their belief systems.

            Your logic isn’t wrong, but it is incomplete. You have said what the law shouldn’t be, on the basis of lowest common denominator, but you haven’t said anything about what it should be.

          • Linus

            I’m not as judgmental as you. I judge people only by the harm they do to others in the pursuit of their selfish interests. That’s why I judge Pixtians so harshly. But if a person does no harm to others while living his life as he sees fit, I have absolutely no problem with that.

            I don’t castigate people for not living life the way I want to. That’s your speciality: seeing yourself as the acme of virtue and criticising anyone who does anything differently from you.

          • Anton

            Again, your criteria are all what people shouldn’t do rather than what they should. Very coy.

          • Linus

            Exactly what a prurient moraliser would say.

            Not content with preventing harm to others, you want to actively impose your standards on everyone to ensure compliance with your moral code.

            When the world worked according to the might is right principle and your kind had the power, you could impose what you liked. Now it doesn’t, or at least the power is no longer with you, so you’re outraged that people make their own moral choices and judge them to be less than you.

            No wonder you people are increasingly friendless and isolated. Who on earth wants to be around you?

          • Anton

            I’m glad you too are in good health.

            About my being rather older than you, be careful about gloating, because one day you will either be the age I am now, or you won’t get there.

          • Linus

            Yes, but the point is that I will always be younger than you are at any specific moment in time, so given that our states of health are roughly equal, the indignities advancing age heaps upon me are likely to be less humiliating and painful than they will be for you at that specific moment.

            I’m perfectly sanguine about the aging process. I’m in good health, I eat well, drink little alcohol, don’t smoke and am physically active and in overall good shape. My doctor tells me I have the circulatory system of a man at least 10 years younger than me. There are no hereditary conditions in either branch of my family that might shorten my life and no psychoneural decline due to senility or Alzheimer’s. I have as good a chance of living to a healthy, active and alert old age as anyone, and better than most.

            Of course I will experience some health problems as I age. We all do. But whatever they are, whatever you’re suffering from at the same time is likely to be more serious, more painful and more debilitating. So I shall take great pleasure in gloating over your plight. Someone who spends his life gloating over the painful eternal torture he imagines people like me will be subject to after we die surely can’t complain when we gloat over the real, actual suffering he undergoes while still alive. Or is the privilege of gloating reserved only to you as yet another symptom of the chronic case of narcissismus megalomanius Pyxtiani from which you suffer?

          • Lollia

            Quite right. In addition, as wicked atheists we do not see any Sin in suicide, assisted or otherwise; so if things get too bad medically, we can always top ourselves without guilt or fear of vengeful gods.
            I shall probably choose the method of inhaling helium,-or possibly Nitrogen.(Assuming I am physically or mentally capable at the time).

          • Linus

            If I follow in the footsteps of both of my parents and three of my grandparents, I’ll die a painless death in my sleep having experienced no major illness or pain. Burst aneurysms of various kinds are what dispose of my people. Indeed my paternal grandfather would surely have gone that way too had a disobliging hunting rifle not decided to explode in his face, killing him instantly and beating his circulatory system to the punch.

            Given my family history, I have myself MOT’ed regularly just to make sure nothing’s about to go pop. So far so good, although in saying that, my mother received a clean bill of health just a few months before her sudden death. When our arteries decide to explode, it seems to be a spur of the moment thing. It’ll happen when it happens and as I probably won’t know much about it when it does, it can happen when it likes.

            I therefore don’t think I’ll have to plan for my own demise. But of course, one never knows. Switzerland is a short drive away from my country place, so if push comes to shove I’ll probably avail myself of the services of an organisation such as Dignitas. No point hanging around if life is unbearable.

          • Anton

            If your attitude is that it can happen when it likes, why do you get regular check-ups?

          • Linus

            I get regular check-ups so that if my blood vessels show any sign of weakening, remedial action can be taken and my life thereby extended.

            I like being alive and would like to remain alive and in good health as long as possible. If I can do anything to lengthen my life that doesn’t involve shortening anyone else’s, I’ll do it. Hence the check-ups. But if I die due to something that’s beyond my control, like a sudden and catastrophic burst aneurysm that no scan saw coming, it will happen when it happens and ainsi soit-il.

            There are no guarantees in life. I take care of what I can and what I can’t will take care of itself. Being that anything could happen at any moment, I see little point in worrying about what I can’t change. But if I can change it and thereby extend my life, I will.

            You on the other hand probably pray to your Sky Pixie for a longer life, ie. the longest possible separation from him. You’d rather be here with those you love than with him. So much for loving him with your whole heart and soul, eh?

            It’s understandable of course: I mean, who is this Sky Pixie and what will an eternity in divine servitude actually look like? And what will happen to those you leave behind? One of the biggest dilemmas faced by the Pixtian control freak is the prospect that one day, he’ll no longer be able to intervene in the lives of those around him. When you die, how will your nearest and dearest cope without you, linchpin of their existence that you are?

          • Anton

            I wish you good health. But I do not agree that there are no guarantees in life. There is one: death.

            Those I am closest to are Christians too, so that the linchpin of their existence is God.

          • Linus

            Really? Death is a guarantee of life?

            Tell that to Turritopsis dohrnii. Or any symmetrically dividing bacteria or yeast cell.

            Effective immortality is a well-known biological phenomenon and research currently going on into human applications is reporting encouraging results. There’s no way yet of knowing whether human senescence can be eradicated, or radically postponed, or will remain largely where it is now. But as our lifespans have increased vastly since Pixiebook times, it’s not unreasonable to suppose that further increases may be possible.

          • Anton

            I did not say that death is a guarantee of life but that life is a guarantee of death. And I was, of course, referring to humans. Although I might indeed be wrong, because the rate is not 100% but less, for two reasons: (1) those alive today haven’t died yet; (2) one particular man has died and come back to life.

            In the scientifically unlikely event that humans can learn how to live indefinitely – and in a state in which they can enjoy life – then fear of death will not be eradicated, because you have a 1 in 1000 chance per annum of dying in an accident, so after a thousand years your chances still aren’t so good.

          • Linus

            Those who are alive today haven’t died yet and there is no proof that anyone who has ever died – by which I mean confirmed death followed by the onset of cellular necrosis – has ever come back to life. There have been rumours and unsubstantiated stories about human resurrection. But there is no convincing evidence to show that it has ever happened.

            If I’m wrong, show me the evidence.

            Immortality is an interesting idea, although at the moment it’s more science fiction than science fact. However the accidental death issue isn’t really an issue in the sense that if we can develop technology that allows us to prolong the life of our bodies indefinitely, there’s no reason to suppose that we won’t be able to make back-up copies of our memories and download them into cloned copies of ourselves if anything happens to our original body.

          • Anton

            Good luck with that.

            I’m up early today for… a funeral.

          • Linus

            I see, so you’ll be laughing and dancing and celebrating the deceased person’s entry into Pixidise, will you? Or are you not quite sure he’ll get there, so will a mournful mien be more appropriate?

            More Pixtian hypocrisy. Death should be a joyous thing because it reunites a “soul” with Sky Pixie, yet you weep and wail and mourn like any of us when you lose a loved one.

          • Anton

            Such hubris to suppose you can choose how and when you die! You could suffer a fatal heart attack or stroke tomorrow.

            I derive no pleasure from the knowledge that anybody is going to hell and I consider myself no better than those who do. You misunderstand Christianity if you think I believe that.

          • Lollia

            If you just raise your eyes to my final bracketed sentence above, you will see that I have allowed for the possibility of uncontrollable events like a sudden Myocardial Infarct (MI). or Cerebrovascular Accident (CVA);–I use the “posh” medical terms just to remind you that I am doctor and have seen more life and death than you have had hot dinners (probably).
            Having banished the myths of Christian Hellfire, I am not about to be re-enslaved by minor Greek deities like Hubris and Nemesis.
            Humans have culturally and technologically evolved away (to a certain extent) from Thomas Hobbes’ dictum that Life is “nasty , brutish, and short” to at last being able to exert some controll over our personal destinies; and a good thing too. We can be relieved from the fear of death and invalidity and anxiety about growing old. This is what makes life truly worth living.

            (Finished the book;-lots of food for philosophical discussion.)

          • Anton

            “We can be relieved from the fear of death and invalidity and anxiety about growing old.”

            ?
            Death is not If but When, and unless you go suddenly then the last months are generally pretty unpleasant whether they occur at age 40 or 80.

          • Lollia

            Not with proper palliative care; not that I fancy prolonged nursing care either. If I was to be diagnosed with terminal cancer, the first thing I would do would be to have a final good holiday in my home country (Cape, S. Africa), and meanwhile order a large cylinder of Helium, a small gas-tight tent, a bottle of Calvados and one of Prosecco, and some morphine-based drugs, and do it myself at the right time.
            If I mis-time it I will have to let the Nurses do their thing,-bed-pans and all. The results will be the same. Just hope I don’t get reincarnated as a Christian!

          • Anton

            You may be sure that there is no risk of that.

          • Lollia

            But surely if God is all-forgiving like he is supposed to be, then he won’t be able to help himself;- he will be logically constrained to make me one of his own;–which means of course that God has no Freewill,-and also therefore neither have we,-nor me either,-which further means that I cannot help being an atheist, which means again that I cannot be fairly judged for what I cannot help being,-which further means that likewise it was unjust for God to judge Adam and Eve for doing what he had made them to do;–which means again that the concept of Original Sin is in-valid;-which means no Salvation, or Crucifixion/ Resurrection, or Redemption is required either;–so you may all just as well be atheists too for all the difference it makes to anything.

          • Anton

            Where do you get that God is all-forgiving?

          • Lollia

            Omnibenevolent?–That’s just one description of course, and party of the Omnimax package,-which I don’t think is at all biblical, but rather coalesced out of Greek theology after Plato and Aristotle. But as the Catholic Church adopted those bits of the latter pagan philosophers which they found congenial, that is the “Christianity” that has come down to us. The Protestants, especially Calvinists and Methodists were of course much more stern and dour, and their God is more avenging and condemnatory, and has pre-destined that only 144,000 will be “saved”, and the rest of us can go to Hell,-literally. Jesus couldn’t make up his mind if He (God) should blast everyone to Hellfire for not accepting everything he said, or he was all-forgiving and turning the other cheek,-in which case, he is logically obliged to follow it through and forgive everyone for everything including Hitler and Kim Jong Un, and even Trump)! Omnipotence goes with Omniscience,–so he knew all this already;–hence the confusion over how to qualify for either Heaven or Hell.
            But of course invocation of the No True Scotsman fallacy will dispose of any interpretation of mine: “But they aren’t Real Christians”!

          • Anton

            The New Testament is what all Christians – Catholic and every protestant sect – have in common, and it is perfectly clear that God is not all-forgiving: specifically, he forgives those who put their trust in Jesus.

            I think you are misunderstanding the Book of Revelation if you think that only 144,000 persons (a number quoted in that book) will end up in heaven. I don’t know any Christian who takes that view.

          • Lollia

            How can I argue?-they all say different things;-I am sure your “group” all sing from the same hymn sheet.
            You will go mad if you read Revelations, John of Patmos did,–by consuming too many magic mushrooms;-they grew there then.
            Must go out now,–rehearsal time at the Jersey Island Singers.
            I sing 1st Bass aka “Lady Bass” as distinct from the Real Men 2nd Basses.

          • Lollia

            Without having to look it all up again, I am sure that is the figure quoted by one prominent Christian sect,-Jehovah’s Witnesses, Southern Baptists?;–anyway who cares?
            I need to clarify my statement about” Christians believe different things”. Obviously from the top down, they have the Nicene Creed, which is pretty clear (even if wrong!).
            But from the bottom up, all Christians appear to believe what they want, and to cherry-pick, and “Interpret” what is written down in black and white. Do all Christians accept the exact same proportions in which Jesus is God and/or man?
            Do they accept proscription on abortion, “Dying with Dignity”? Do they believe in “good works” and the Catholic Tradition”?-or sola scriptura, or Sola Fide?
            Go they believe “Maker of Heaven and Earth” (Creed),-or in Naturalistic Evolution,-not involving God? Do they often commit adultery, (not to mention Child abuse)?-I thought these were forbidden by God, but Christians believe otherwise perhaps?
            Are Deists and Unitarians Christians, eg Newton, Einstein, Thomas Paine, the American Founding fathers?
            Einstein talked about “childish superstition” in his final letter to his friend; -he has been claimed to be an atheist, pantheist, and deist,-or just (confusingly) used “God” as a metaphor for Nature,-“Panentheist” maybe?
            In general Christians do what they want, and adjust their “morality” afterwards,-knowing Jesus will forgive them.
            They always find that their” conscience is clear”;-so that’s alright then.

          • Lollia

            Missed a bit: yes you may be more civilised than some other Christians, and have given up belief in Hellfire for the likes of me,-but I think you are in the minority; (see other posts).

            My father died age 84 from Deep Vein Thrombosis leading to Pulmonary Embolism (DVT/PE), and my mother got to only 56, and died of MI, –but smoked like a chimney and was constantly over-stressed by paronia. My father’s siblings all lived in to their 80s and 90s,-except for Uncle Gordon who went off with Cecil Rhodes “up country” to steal it from its indigenous people, and died prematurely of drink,–but not before writing a biography of Cecil Rhodes which I now possess. (Just a Little snipet to amuse you).

          • Anton

            I haven’t given up belief in hellfire for the likes of you. It’s just that the prospect of your suffering there brings me no joy whatsoever. You retain an alternative at this point, you know.

            Death is not If but When, as I’m sure you realise.

          • Lollia

            I once went to Amsterdam and stayed at a Christian Hostel just for fun, and attended the “discussion group” while there. The first thing the master of ceremonies did was to fix us all with a steely eye, and say “you are all going to die”. I could not resist a little giggle at the idea that he thought I did not already know that, (and me a philosopher too!). If I feared death, which I do not, (only prolonged pain and suffering) I would recall the passage of Epicurus on the subject; (google it if you don’t know it).
            Also I reason that in 1939 I had not been conceived and did not exist; I experienced nothing then,-and I expect to return to that non-existent state in due course, (except that then I shall not be an “I” anymore; difficult to conceive of, but nothing to worry about.
            Whereas you have to worry about if you said the right prayers at the right time in the right way in order to satisfy your implacable God; and if you do make it to Heaven be careful not to look at God in a funny way,-or it is straight down to Hell for you.
            You might get as far as being able to enjoy the sufferings of the Damned (well ,not you, because you are better than that), from the dubious comfort of Abraham’s sweaty bosom, but are you really sure you have the right God?–why the God of Israel of all things? Isn’t that unpatriotic? Why not a good European and British deity like say Sulis Minerva?

          • Anton

            Yes, I’m sure, but thank you for your concern.

          • Anton

            I shall get no pleasure from the knowledge that you are in hell and I hope you will avoid that fate.

            Regarding ageing, however old I get to be when I die, you will either reach it yourself, or you won’t.

          • Linus

            I think you’re lying. You say you don’t want me to go to the Pixcinerator, but given the contempt and condescension you treat me with, that claim is not plausible. I think you merely say you want me to be saved because that’s what your religion requires you to say and you do your best to pay lip service to it.

            What you actually want is to see me burn. That’s the essence of real Pixtian love: pure, unadulterated hatred of all those who will not bend the knee to your authority.

            And as for aging, I will never be as old as you are. By the time I reach your current age, you will be much older still and suffering from even greater physical and mental decrepitude than you are now.

            The gap in our ages is a constant that nothing can change. Even when you’re dead, the gap won’t close. A dead person’s age doesn’t stop advancing when he dies. If you die when you’re 80 and I live to 90, I won’t be 10 years older than you. I’ll be 10 years older than the age you were when you died, but the amount of time elapsed from your birth won’t be less than the amount of time elapsed since mine. You have a headstart over me that time can never erase.

            Of course if I live longer than you live, I may well experience illnesses you never did. But how will you gloat over them when you’re dead and gone? The point you’re tryint to make is that I shouldn’t gloat because I may outlive you and suffer more than you. But if I do, how will you know? You won’t be able to gloat because dead people can’t gloat. They can’t do anything. They don’t exist any more.

            So I’ll continue to gloat safe in the knowledge that you’ll never get the chance to return the favour. Even if I fall under a bus today, any gloating you engage in will be a waste of time because I’ll be beyond its reach. The scope of a gloat is limited in space and time and requires both the gloater and the gloatee to be alive and capable of understanding it.

            So suck it up, old man. You’re older than me and always will be, so when it comes to comparing our situations, I do the gloating and you submit to it, and always will.

          • Anton

            I’m content to let time reveal what it will. I’m glad that you are in good health and still have the choice to escape hell. Take it while you can.

          • Linus

            There is no Pixcinerator to escape from. If I’m wrong, show it to me.

          • Anton

            You aren’t looking.

          • Linus

            Show me where then. Go on, point to it. If there’s fire, there must be smoke. So where is the Pixcinerator’s smokestack?

          • Anton

            Look. Listen.

            I can’t make somebody see or hear who has his eyes shut and his hands over his ears.

          • Linus

            My eyes are open and my ears are uncovered and this Pixcinerator of yours is nowhere to be seen or heard.

            What you can’t do is make me see or hear your hallucinations, although in your case I don’t think that’s quite the right word. I’m pretty sure you neither see nor hear the Pixcinerator, but you’ve decided it’s real because its existence comforts you in your Sky Pixie-shaped delusion of omnipotence. It’s a place where those who have the temerity to disobey you will be sent to suffer for all eternity. Of course you believe in it. If it didn’t exist, what incentive would there be for anyone to obey you?

            If your religious pretensions had take another form, you might just as easily have believed in the underworld of ancient Chinese myth, or the bridge of Chinvat, or the land of Mordor where the shadows lie. But you chose Pixtianity as the vehicle to launch you ego to immortality, so the Pixcinerator it is for all those who dispute your absolute power to decide the fate of everyone.

            What a joke. The sheer childishness of such a vision deprives it of any power except that of inspiring contempt and derision.

          • Anton

            My eyes are open and my ears are uncovered

            That’s where you’re wrong. You have what it takes to hear what I hear and see what I see.

          • Linus

            What you say you hear and see. As I neither hear nor see it, and I suspect that when you say you do, you’re deliberately lying, I have no choice but to treat everything you say with the greatest of suspicion.

            Have you never read the story of The Emperor’s New Clothes? Pixtians vie with one another in the extravagance of the miracles they attribute to their Sky Pixie, but when push comes to shove, they can never show any concrete proof of them.

            It’s all make-believe. You know it’s make-believe. But you can never admit it.

          • Linus

            Oh and BTW, still here?

            Haven’t been raptured or ruptured or stolen away in the night?

            Thought not. But then you never thought you would be, did you? All you said was that you thought this time it might happen.

            Well, you were wrong, weren’t you? As you always are. There’ll be no dancing at the Butterfly Ball in Pixie Paradise for you tonight.

            Honestly, what is that Sky Pixie of yours doing? Doesn’t he realise that every time he fails to make one of your deluded predictions come true, he damages your standing as a latter-day prophet and messiah? Who’s going to believe you again when you’ve cried wolf so many times? Sure, you’ve taken to hedging your bets lately in true Pharisee fashion. This time you gave yourself a way out by saying that you weren’t sure if the wolf would come, although you thought there was a good chance that he would. But he didn’t. So how is your reputation as a prophet faring this morning?

            Looking a little tattered, isn’t it?

          • Anton

            I was not wrong. I was right. I said here that I reckoned that interpretation of Revelation 12 was wrong. Check my words and kindly stop lying about what I said. It doesn’t reflect well on you.

          • Linus

            Did I say you claimed there was no way it couldn’t happen? No, I did not. Kindly stop lying about what I said. It doesn’t reflect well on you.

            I acknowledged that you covered all your bases. Someone who’s as careful about his public reputation as you always does that. Being « right » is one of your most profound psychological needs. Sky Pixie forbid that you would ever be caught out in error. You’d have a complete mental collapse.

            That’s how rigid ideologues like you are made. The prospect of being held up to public ridicule for a prophecy unfulfilled is so terrifying to you that you’ll hedge any bet rather than commit to something with a result that can be verified. This is why Pixtianity is the perfect religion for you. All promises of paradise are made for a future that is unverifiable by any means available to mankind, so you can lie as large as you like and never be caught out.

            Anything that could come true in the here and now must be ringed about with caveats in case it doesn’t happen the way you’re sure it will, leaving you with egg on your face. Only sometimes the caveats slip a bit, exposing your real beliefs. Your comment that the reasoning behind this prophecy was better than most showed you gave it at least some credence, despite your denials.

            Had your suitcase packed and waiting in the hall, didn’t you? How crushed you must have been when the clock struck midnight and there you still were. What on earth is Sky Pixie doing making you wait so long for your reward? It better be bloody good when it finally arrives.

          • Anton

            I’ve better things to do than repeat myself. Readers may judge for themselves who is lying about the words of the other.

          • Linus

            They may indeed. If they judge I’m lying, I’ll shrug my shoulders and reflect on the tribal nature of Pixtian judgment. If they judge you’re lying, you’ll hyperventilate and start quoting previous posts hand over fist in a panicked attempt to clear your name.

            You fear that if even a single person ever thinks you got something wrong, Narnia will be overturned and perish in fire and water, don’t you?

            See what happens when narcissistic obsessive/compulsives get their hands on religion? St. Anton Smartypants the Never-Wrong must never be caught out in a deliberate falsehood otherwise the universe will cease to exist. Sounds like the plot of that Matt Damon film « Dogma ». Just his kind of religion.

          • Anton

            It’s called having high standards, actually.

    • James M

      The world will be here tomorrow as usual, that’s for sure.

      • Lollia

        I would say it is inductively probable!!

  • Dreadnaught

    What a bunch of PRATS – (everyone involved)

  • James M

    There is no “eternal battle of good over [sic] evil”, despite that news report – that is Manicheeism, not Christianity. Since Wells Cathedral is apparently staffed by Manichees, it comes as no surprise to find a C of E church being used as the setting for a devil-themed fashion display.

    What next: consecrated sodomy on the altar, perhaps ? Offering a virgin in sacrifice to Baphomet Lord of Darkness, maybe ? Every time the Church of England behaves in a way that seems unbeatably bad, something even worse happens. Not that the CC is in a markedly better state – it is not.

    • alternative_perspective

      Quite, I end up shaking my head at this stream of reports… and my heart sings: “come out of her my people”.
      I thought Friday was for good news?

      • James M

        My reaction exactly. I often wonder what C, S. Lewis would have made of such nonsense.

        • alternative_perspective

          I don’t know – but I expect he’d have made a good book out of it.

        • Lollia

          Or alternatively; What would such nonsense have made of C.S. Lewis?

          • James M

            Question not understood, sorry.

  • CliveM

    You never know we all might! :0)

  • Anton

    Do you really think that most Christians believe it will happen years before Jesus returns?

  • Manfarang

    12 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

  • carl jacobs

    You can enjoy a bad movie, but you must still be able to recognize that it is bad. Hellboy is bad. Even for the collection of bad movies that constitute the Super Hero Genre, Hellboy is bad.

  • Chefofsinners

    Wells, Wells, Wells.
    Hell’s bells.
    How you plumb the depths, drawing forth unholy water that is fit neither for cleansing nor for drinking.

    This feels personal. The beautiful Wells Cathedral sits at the foot of the Mendip hills within sight of Glastonbury, supposedly the place where Christianity first came to Britain, but now a place where Satan has his throne. Wells is an architectural jewel, built to the glory of God, which has a tangible aura of tranquil sanctity. I was born and grew up within a few miles. I have found no more lovely place on earth and I will often return when I need to reflect. I feel as though my sister has been raped. I hope that those who are stewards of the cathedral will reflect on that fact when considering future bookings.

    • Linus

      Your “sister” wasn’t raped. She willingly participated in a gangbang and thoroughly enjoyed herself. And now she’s rolling her eyes as her brother throws a fit of hysterics and wondering when the prurient bore will shut up and let her get on with her life.

      • Chefofsinners

        How lovely of you to say so.

        My sister is not those who currently draw a salary at the cathedral. She is the reverent devotion of countless generations past.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      My Lord the Bishop and I visited Wells in May, and it was just lovely. I particularly liked the Scissor Sisters arch, most unusual. Glastonbury was full of shops like “Gandalf’s Grimoires” and “Morgana’s Milk Bar”…most odd.

      • bluedog

        ‘Morgana’s Milk Bar’. Intriguing. Does one suckle in order to imbibe? And if so, how do they manage to offer different flavours? Perhaps all will be revealed.

      • Chefofsinners

        Glastonbury today is the bastard child of evil and stupidity.

        • Sarky

          I thought that was trump?

          • Chefofsinners

            Trump Is the product of Obama and Clinton. Which is pretty much the same thing as evil and stupidity.

      • David

        Sounds as if it has caught the Glastonbury hipppy disease.

    • David

      Wells was a most beautiful historic city when I lived in nearby Axbridge. As a young Town Planning Officer of just 28 I was responsible for drafting the report that resisted the construction of an over large bypass that would have devastated its water meadows on the eastern side. Said report was then improved and signed off by my superiors before it was submitted as formal evidence.
      Wells was retained in its pristine form and the necessary growth diverted to work a day Street to its south-west. I do hope that that jewel of a medieval city is still as beautiful today.

      • Chefofsinners

        Then thank you, David. You have done a very worthwhile thing. Axbridge itself is a place of great beauty, especially on an autumn morning such as this, when mists hang over the levels.

        • David

          Thank you Chief.

  • Chefofsinners

    Anyone who is bored with Christianity has never experienced it for themselves. Of course, as the bible says “if Christ is not risen then we are of all men most miserable… eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die.” But those who think they are bored with it have, like Eve, exchanged the truth of God for a lie.

    • Lollia

      Then how come my mother was an practising Anglican, my father a practising Dutch Reformed Church member, and I was baptised and Confirmed. and steeped in both sects,and a believer until about age 17. Chapel every evening at school and twice on Sundays? I think I experienced it pretty thoroughly.
      I suppose now you will invoke the “No True Scotsman logical fallacy”;-(-“O they weren’t REAL Christians!”).

      • Chefofsinners

        You do seem to talk a lot about what other people were and what was done to you. Once you had the opportunity to make your own decision, you made it. There is no evidence that you ever were a Christian, so you have no knowledge of the new birth or the indwelling Holy Spirit.
        I will invoke the gardener’s axiom: Sitting in a greenhouse doesn’t make you a tomato. Sitting in church doesn’t make you a Christian.

        • Lollia

          Just trying to fill in the historical background. I went to Church/Chapel; I sang the hymns and said the prayers, and prayed privately at home, at bed-time. Never any feed-back from God. I think I tried as much as humanly possible. What else was I supposed to do? I believed it all because I was told to believe it all, -and I had no concept of forming an alternative opinion about it at that age. I tried to find God, but he made no effort to try and find me,-so consequently I am Godless;–is that surprising? The next step is up to Him;-but he had better hurry up;-I am 77 next week!

  • Step11Recovery

    you can’t beat a ‘brain at the door’ movie

    Aka A ‘peanuts and lager’ film.

  • Anton

    Will St Andrew Holborn give the fashion crew their money back, as tainted?

    • Chefofsinners

      Will they heckerslike.

  • John

    Oh, what a blessed relief to now see Linus’ puerile contributions appear on my feed as ‘This user is blocked.’

    • len

      Linus is so predictable I don`t even bother to read his posts anymore.

    • Jonathan

      Welcome to the world of ‘This user is blocked.’ Makes the blog useable again doesn’t it.

  • Chefofsinners

    No comment.

  • len

    Hope so Sarky , one day you might be here on your own ,with just Linus and a few others?

    • Sarky

      You can bring the beers.

  • Lollia

    Me too! Do you like Eraserhead, and Blue velvet?

    • Sarky

      Absolutely. I love to finish a movie feeling a bit disturbed!!

  • Chris Bell

    What on earth are you all so bothered about? The Church never was Christ. Ever and never will be. This last weakness of the CoE merely confirms it. Pantomime Bishops, clergy and choristers …..the same as it ever was…..talking heads, alone; dressing up and dressing down forever missing Christ.
    You have to walk alone to know Christ…..no church, no groups, no friends, no family, no society, no doctrine, no pressure groups, no agreements, no favourites and no justifications….just as He did.
    And when you do you will know the Christian of Pilgrim’s Progress….for where you are not, He always Is.
    So stop your whining and whingeing and grow up for you will come to see much greater abominations as He tightens the screws on our original supreme Sin as to ever have conceived that we were separate from God. Even now you may be perplexed that your ‘Society’ cannot tell the difference between the masculine and feminine where that which has a body of one sex wants to be in a body of the opposite. And your Laws are being even now twisted and contorted to make this confusion legal and acceptable and not just by the ‘secular’ but also by the ‘religious’. So look to yourself and come to know who you really are. It is your choice.