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" Fix Reason firmly to her seat,
and call to her tribunal every fact,
every opinion.

Question with boldness even the existence of a God;

because if there be one,
he must more approve the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear."

- Thomas Jefferson




The man who does
not do his own thinking
is a slave,

and is a traitor to himself
and to his fellow-men.


- Robert G Ingersoll,
( Son of a minister )
"The Liberty of Man, Woman and Child"






"What religion a man shall have
is a historical accident,

quite as much as what
language he shall speak."

- George Santayana







"I believe
that no discovery of fact,

however trivial,
can be wholly useless to the race,

and that no trumpeting
of falsehood,

however virtuous in intent,

can be anything but vicious. . ."

- H.L. Mencken






"The fear of God
is not the beginning of wisdom.

The fear of God
is the death of wisdom.

Skepticism and doubt
lead to study and investigation,

and investigation
is the beginning of wisdom.

The modern world
is the child of doubt and inquiry,

as the ancient world

was the child of fear and faith."


- Clarence Darrow






"Facts do not cease to exist
because they are ignored."






"All that is necessary,
as it seems to me,
to convince any reasonable person

that the Bible is simply and
purely of human invention
—of barbarian invention


—is to read it.

Read it
as you would any other book;

think of it as you would of any other;

get the bandage of reverence
from your eyes;

drive from your heart
the phantom of fear;

push from the throne of your brain
the cowled form of superstition

— then read the Holy Bible,
and you will be amazed that you ever,
for one moment,
supposed a being of infinite
wisdom, goodness and purity,

to be the author
of such ignorance
and of such atrocity."

- Robert G Ingersoll
( 1833 - 1899 )




New reformation Leaving

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Origins of
" Take, EAT ; this is My Body ...
Drink ye all of it ; for this is My Blood..."

( Matthew Ch. 26 v. 26 - 28 KJV )

" ...For My flesh is meat indeed,
and My blood is drink indeed. "

( John 6:55 )


Most regular churchgoers feel and reinforce a feeling of closeness to "God"
through the ritual of "Holy Communion",
sharing the bread and wine as some of the NT writers claim was Jesus' wish.

To remember someone with a meal is very common
and funerals are followed a meal in many cultures.

For some modern denominations the bread & wine of communion
are seen as symbolic of communion with the "presence" of Jesus,
and the ceremony an act done in memory of Him,
linking the believer in a purely symbolic way.

( After my mother died & we'd paid our last respects, we had a meal.
When I remember her, I can feel "close" to her,
without in any way thinking her to be somehow literally with me.
)

In the oldest denominations, the official RC & Orthodox views,
the "Body and Blood, the Presence" is definitely NOT seen as just symbolic.

"It is strictly understood as being the Real Presence of Christ,
His true Body and Blood mystically present in the bread and wine."

( The official Anglican / Episcopalian position is that there is a "real presence"
but stops short of claiming actual Transubstantiation
[ transformation into Body & Blood ] to be occurring.)


Wanting to feel "close" & having a meal in memory
are very easily understandable ideas to us.

BUT where does this
" Take, eat; this is my body", "Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood"
tradition come from ?

Why would anyone think of making it a desirable ritual ?

Our civilisation does not see that eating the flesh of a loved one ( deceased or not )
is in any way normal or desirable.

Without Bible references and church practice
the very idea would not occur to a person from a modern culture.

Why do the churches with the very oldest traditions insist
that in Holy Communion bread / body & wine / blood are indistinguishable
?

Because, in very early cultures, some people actually did it.

----------------

Start of quotes

this was retrieved Feb 11, 2014 from
http://www.religionnewsblog.com/14276/hindu-priests-arrested-for-cannibalism
report is dated April 10, 2006 :


"Two Hindu priests have been arrested on charges
of eating vital organs from the corpse of a child
in the belief they would gain supernatural powers,
Indian police said today.

“Our investigations revealed the pair exhumed the body on Friday
and after lopping off its head they devoured its heart, liver and other soft organs,
thinking the act would give them with immense powers,”
Jaunpur police chief Abhay Kumar Prasad said....

The priests follow an ancient Hindu cult which once permitted cannibalism
and the use of human corpses in various rituals.
It was first banned in the 18th century when India was a British colony."

end of retrieved quote


this was retrieved Feb 11, 2014 from
http://www.today.com/id/9842124#.UvmU1rT3Sm0
Associated Press report is dated Oct 27, 2005


“Feeding on the Dead”
A new Indian documentary seeks to shed light on a secretive sect of Hindu ascetics
who eat corpses in the belief that ingesting dead flesh
will make them ageless and give them supernatural powers.

end of retrieved quote


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannibalism (is an extensive entry)
A quote from
Rev. W. Holman Bentley (Baptist Missionary Society), Pioneering on the Congo, TRS, 1900 (2 vols.)
is recorded at http://www.heretical.com/cannibal/congo1.html
accessed Feb 11, 2014


These Bible passages refer to dire , tragic circumstances :

"And ye shall eat the flesh of your sons,
and the flesh of your daughters shall ye eat."
Leviticus 26:29

"The disaster that came to my people brought horror;
loving mothers boiled their own children for food."
Lamentations 4:10 ( GNT,Good News Translation)



Sacrifice of a human ( own child ) to God is recorded , approvingly, in the Bible.
Judges 11:29 onwards
"Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah...."


BUT this reads as an anticipation of victory celebrations:

"Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth,
of rams, of lambs, and of goats, of bullocks, all of them fatlings of Bashan.
And ye shall eat fat till ye be full, and drink blood till ye be drunken,
of my sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you.
Thus ye shall be filled at My table
with horses and chariots, with mighty men, and with all men of war,
saith the Lord GOD.

And I will set My glory among the heathen, and all the heathen shall see My judgment that I have executed, and My hand that I have laid upon them."

Holy Bible : Ezekial 39: 18 - 21

End of quotes
----------------



This is why the NT writers used the words "eat", "drink", "body", "blood".

The ritual is a remnant of an actual primitive belief and practice:
that by physically eating human flesh,
we partake of the real substance of the person.


So what we have been taught to do as a sacred duty,
which can induce a reverent feeling of closeness to God,
probably was an attempt to stop the actual consumption of flesh and blood
and replace it with bread and wine.

( Wine also had sacred connotations.)



When we see Communion being offered,
we are reminded of our link to the primitive past
and the slow, tortured emergence of civilized society.

" Our religious beliefs come to us in a protective coating of age and respectability,
like the invisible "force field" of science fiction.

It takes a degree of intellectual courage
to penetrate this penumbra of sanctity
and inspect a belief on its own merits.

Still, many people have done so.
They have themselves asking such questions as: ..... "

Thomas S. Vernon, Professor of Philosophy
"The Complete Secularist"
continued at http://expreacher.com/Complete_Secularist.htm



"The secular view is
that good behaviour
is based on simple respect
for other people
which is self evidently necessary
for a peaceful functioning society.

Good behaviour does not
*depend* on God ! "

Time for : http://expreacher.com/new_reformation.htm

Some further reading :

http://expreacher.com/Blog.htm#modern ( Brief )

Origins of "God sent His Son to die.."
A glimpse into the world in NT times
How recent some progress is !
Have a look at "Heavenly Dreams"
Richard Dawkins puts it well here...


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