Salon magazine’s article on Michelle Bachmann Creepy End Time Fantasies is an important read for those who do not yet grasp the dangers of the Republican right’s desire for nuclear Armageddon.
I find it hard to believe that such idiocy has risen to a position of candidacy for the office of the President of the United States (impro-‘bable’ as it may be). But we’ve seen it before in Bush, Reagan and quite a few Cabinet members. There is also the Senate and Congress where the religious fervor to destroy the world and usher in the Second Coming is a heartfelt desire by these deluded idiots.
The Holocaust the article’s author refers to is nuclear war, a terrifying possibility that is all too real. Any world development that leads the world to nuclear Armageddon is desirable and ‘good’ by these followers of ‘End Time’ prophecies, despite the catastrophic levels of suffering this would entail on the rest of humanity. I’m quite familiar with this branch of religious indoctrination, it stems from the rapidly growing evangelical endorsement of End Time events.
Sean Illing’s article is nicely put, succinct and to the point. And 100% dead accurate.There is a real danger to America and to the whole world should these end time fantasies be realized by anyone in American leadership (or anywhere else).
As a former evangelist / minister, I once believed in all of this myself. But nagging problems and issues with theology and church functions caused me to deeply research the Bible itself, its accuracy, history, translations, interpolation and many known errors.
Over many years, I read the research of historical scholars and biblical researchers. Their summary (and mine) is that the Bible is not a book of facts or events, it is not even historically accurate; it is almost entirely a collection of fiction (with a few exceptions), and the stories it does contain have been rewritten (redacted and heavily modified) by both ancient and modern people interested in promoting a selected set of beliefs in support of their faith.
Regarding ‘prophecy’, and the expected future events including the ‘End Times’ embraced by evangelicals and the religious right, none of these stories are true either, which is the real reason why thousands of years have now passed with no ‘fulfillment’. Entire passages, even chapters have been added to the scriptures, and hundreds of books have been left entirely out of the Bible that depicted entirely different future events, some far more fanciful and imaginative then the one we’re discussing now. An examination of these additional works has also been done by scholars with the same conclusions: also fiction.
This is why no prophecies or revelation will ever happen as depicted in the Bible. These stories are simply fiction, written by men of an entirely different era and civilization and with a very different understanding of the world that has nothing to do with the world of today.
Written during a time plagued by suffering, oppression, injustice and war, apocalyptic writings were very widespread and not just limited to Christianity, but it was Christianity the succeeded the most in promoting these stories in the West.
Such literature was very common and widespread, the Bible contains but a tiny, tiny fraction of all the literature of this type that has been uncovered by researchers. Most of it was rejected during the official selection of the ‘authorized books and letters’ that became the Bible itself several centuries later, but we have many of these documents today and a certain few wind up in the Bible.
In the end, the Bible ‘as approved’ was selected from thousands of documents that appeared to give the early church (3rd century and beyond) what it really wanted, which was legitimacy and agreed upon doctrine. But this is not what the historical record actually still shows. Each text was haggled over, having detractors and champions that were trying to create the future for the church as each saw it. Unfortunately, what they eventually wound up with has failed miserably on historical accuracy as deep examination has shown by many different researchers.
The creation of Apocrypha literature has occurred again and again throughout human history during difficult periods (it is occurring again now). You can find tons and tons of ‘predictions’, ‘prophecies’ and ‘prophets’ all over the Internet, all claiming essentially the same thing. Virtually every single one of them is 100% wrong – nothing they ever claim ever happens. If you properly apply the ‘biblical standard’ required by the Bible itself to any of these claims made today, they are all clearly false prophets.
Yet this point never seems to bother the faithful who never fact check or look to see how accurate their leaders or evangelists really are, or whether or not any of the expected events they’ve predicted ever come to pass. Year after year, century after century, the ‘End Times’ is preached to the listening, and never is there is fulfillment of anything. Gross misinterpretations and twisted logic is applied to scripture and events and a never ending series of non-events to explain away yet again why ‘it hasn’t happened yet’ or how ‘this is proof’ of something that actually has occurred many times before (which is what Bachmann is now doing). Loose and fast biblical ‘interpretations’ which make no sense at all are often applied and can mean literally anything (and often do) to suit the claims being made. Cherry-picking phrases out of context are often used. None of this satisfies linguistic experts, inaccuracies abound and ultimately, the proof as it were, is in the historical record which shows that these claims are all simply false.
Since the early 80’s, I’ve been personally aware of thousands of these false claims that to this day, remain just as false as when they were first pronounced. But I went further, examining church history backwards through time, of which there are a ton of written records. Prophets, evangelists and preachers have all risen in prominence and influence, yet none of their claims came true, century after century. No prophecies have been fulfilled. No end time events have occurred. Despite their common theme of ‘imminence’ and the expectations that significant biblical events would happen in their lifetimes, nothing ever did. This expectation is very common and often occurs as centuries end and especially during the beginning of a new millennium. Believers are often caught up into these expectations only to be sorely disappointed again when nothing occurs.
But being wrong doesn’t mean much to the faithful. It’s just ‘not time yet’ or ‘we don’t understand this fully yet’ sort of explaining away that never really explains anything. Or worse, they simply ignore it all and go on to the next event that is supposed to have some sort of cosmic ‘meaning’. It’s always fear feeding on fear in an endless repetition of ‘stay awake / stay afraid’ teachings that emanate from pulpits around the world. Since the invention of television and radio, this type of fear-mongering propaganda has spread far and wide, with many programs entirely dedicated now to spreading their message 24/7. Many of these ministries have become exceedingly rich (multimillionaires are very common, even in “small” churches) by scaring their followers into supporting them.
This demonstrates how easily misled they can really be and how completely dangerous it would be to allow anyone with these beliefs into a high political office (or even be a dog catcher). They’re dangerously deluded and their openly declared desire to embrace death and destruction should not be taken lightly by anyone.
The End Times that evangelicals embrace is simply a false meme, one which they will have to ‘create’ themselves since the stories they’ve embraced are demonstrably false. But this is also true of the other stories so fundamental to their faith that aren’t quite so dangerous to the rest of us. There will be no return of Christ, no Rapture, no ‘millennial kingdom’, none of the dubious ‘rewards’ for which they so fervently embrace, and which so many seem so willing to die and even kill for.
But there is actually, much, much more that puts to the test the entire creation of Christianity and what it has become these two thousand years later since its inception. Even the stories of Christ, his life, ministry and execution are considered fraudulent and inaccurate by biblical scholars, events that never happened as claimed hundreds of years later when it finally did get written down by unknown authors. Significant evidence of forgery and fabrications have been found in the many ancient texts examined, and the actual authorship, plagiarism and redaction’s uncovered in the surviving historical record are quite significant by linguistic experts.
Virtually all of the books in the Bible were written many years after the life and ministry of Christ ended. Most of the books we have today were not written by the authors we ‘know’ about today either. All of the Gospels are considered ‘op-eds’ of just a single original text written by a unknown author (possibly Mark), but even Mark’s Gospel has redacted passages and added words, and none of the Gospels agree with each other on important places, people, events or dates. Entire sections have been added and deleted and they give differing accounts that simply don’t agree as they should if they are to be considered historically accurate.
There is something else critically important: There is not a single contemporary reference to the life of Christ during his lifetime. In all of the surviving texts we still have (many thousands) from the 1st century civilization, not one records anything about Christ, his life, his ministry, his miracles, nothing.
Far from being ‘known throughout the region’ as claimed in the Bible, the historical evidence shows exactly the opposite (Josephus’s “Antiquities of the Jews” short passage on Christ is now regarded as an interpolation, added into the original document much later on by an unknown author). Worth noting, there is ample written evidence of the actual historical existence on many other people known to have existed then, including places and events in this era – just virtually nothing on Jesus, so we know that they did in fact write down their true history but they ‘somehow’ missed the most important man and events occurring in human history.
This lack of contemporary reference on such a central figure opened up all kinds of opportunities for the early church followers to create whatever documentation they deemed necessary in support of their faith, which is exactly what scholars believed happened. It wasn’t until many years later did any of this so-called ‘evidence’ of the followers surface and circulate among the newly founded church, some which took several hundred years to actually write and produce (and why we know it was not written by the disciples of Christ). There is also significant evidence of deliberate suppression and destruction of known texts that contradicted the so-called ‘official account’ chosen to represent the ‘true church’. This went on for hundreds of years as early followers haggled over what and who was ‘right’ and who was wrong. Scholars now believe that early followers of Christianity both created and suppressed written records in order lend credibility and ‘proof’ to their doctrines and authority and to give ‘evidence’ that their version was ‘right’ and eventually chosen to be included in the Bible.
Far from being the ‘inerrant word of God’, there are over 30,000 known errors, contradictions and inaccuracies in the biblical translations currently in use today. People who base their political or even religious beliefs on this book are simply embracing a fantasy created by ancient men who never understood what the impacts of what they were doing might be. Yet millions of believers still believe that these ancient papyrus and broken skin fragments must be true despite the complete absence of actual evidence or historical support. But large numbers have never meant that such groups could be completely wrong as human history has shown especially when it comes to religion, science, medicine and history. The proof is always verifiable no matter how many ‘believe’.
The evidence is clear: the Bible is a creation of men through centuries of modifications and fabrication, specifically written and protected to support the religious views and teachings of its adherents to the new faith. It is neither accurate in history, fact or future. It was created over thousands of years by various people whose interest was both political and religious. Its intent was to offer comfort, hope, solace and promise to afflicted and oppressed people and to unify and control men. But like any book with multiple authors written over such a huge span of time, it is most certainly not true history or a blueprint of any kind for the future. It contains thousands of contradictions and errors which would be expected by so many different writers.
Despite the hope and promises claimed within its pages and the need to ‘love your enemies’ and ‘turn the other cheek’, the Bible and its many interpretations and cherry-picked passages has been used to enact horrific suffering, oppression, endless wars, torture and mental abuse over millions and millions of people – and especially upon its own adherents. Even believers were not exempt from its demands of lifetimes of suffering. The exceedingly dark and ugly true history of the Christian church is quite extreme and was very much a part of the Manifest Destiny doctrine embraced in the New World by the invaders, championing the genocidal slaughter of hundreds of millions. This was repeated throughout the whole world and continues to this day. For over 2000 years, the Bible has single-handily created such divisive conditions within humanity and the human condition that it must be correctly identified as a book with “no equal”.
Most people will reject this knowledge and dare not do the research or investigation for themselves because the process is simply too painful for them to embrace. It’s far easier to continue to embrace a comfortable fantasy then accept reality and the actual facts.
This is called cognitive dissonance, the condition where conflicting beliefs are held in conflict, which can create severe stress. This is very common within Christianity and is a mental disorder that has lead to many kinds of emotional problems and conflicts with the rest of the world, including many acts of extreme violence. Christianity exhibits this in profound ways, depending upon the attitudes and beliefs of its followers. Many people today are deeply disturbed by their Christian beliefs and fantasies and some have violently reacted to others when disagreements occur or when people have refused their advances. The rise in Christian fundamentalism in the past 20 years clearly indicates that a return to the past methods of oppression and violence is returning.
Realize that Bachmann’s ‘creepy fantasies’ are embraced by several million Americans who earnestly desire for a nuclear holocaust to cast the world into ‘end time’ fulfillment and to bring about their final ‘reward’ and you will gain some idea of what the world is actually facing. Bachmann is ‘extremely excited‘ to witness this. Between now and then up to 2/3 of humanity will die and be damned to eternal punishment and torture (over 5 billion people, at least). I’ve studied this doctrine extensively and have found it completely insane because it requires a suspension of humanity, common sense and denial of facts. Ancient and deeply flawed superstitions and fears are ruling their minds and clouding their judgement.
This is truly an insane worldview that pretends that nothing happens according to the will and actions of men, but all that happens is because of an invisible, capricious and despicable deity that literally ‘plays’ with humanity through centuries of endless suffering, misery and war only to finally and forever yank the rug out yet again. Mankind is not truly responsible for anything that happens, since all that occurs is according to the will of God. Only God is truly ‘responsible’ for everything that happens, down to the smallest event, with his arch-nemesis the Devil playing his chosen but appointed role, as even he is a part of this cosmic ‘plan’ for mankind, culminating with the death of every living thing and then magically, out pops a new heaven and a new earth in a re-twist on the ancient Genesis story, with all enemies, suffering and misery finally vanquished and the ‘chosen few’ ushered in.
This is exceptionalism in an extreme form, a very dangerous deluded attitude that deifies one ‘special’ group and denigrates all others, ultimately designating them for death and destruction.
Except for everybody else being dead, tortured for eternity and completely and forever forgotten, this doesn’t sound too bad to the believers. But this ignores the immense suffering already occurring now and the mind-boggling death and global destruction still to come. It also completely ignores the outrages ludicrously of this fanciful story, whereas mankind never really had any choice in the matter, all being predestined, foreordained and predicted through prophesy and ‘preferred’ interpretation.
This escapism from reality and responsibility is truly breathtaking, depicting the warped and flawed mindset of its adherents. In a fair and reasonable world, we would label such people as mentally insane. Death and destruction are ultimately more preferable then life and living; humans are just bit players on the Earth as a cosmic struggle of ‘good’ vs. ‘evil’ grinds the life of the planet into a miserable dust, only to be wiped out anyway. But the real evil in all of this bizarre fantasy is blithely ignored.
It is escapism in its most brutal and callous form – a total disregard by believers for the actions, responsibilities and accountability for what humans are doing to other humans on this planet (including their own), and to all the other life forms that also inhabit this world. It’s why Republicans, evangelicals and the so-called ‘faithful’ hate environmentalism, climate change and even science itself, because these realities refute their beliefs at the very core and hold them personally responsible for their contributions and inaction to a dying planet which they are quite content to ‘help along’ as fast as possible.
They do not see their involvement as being wrong or evil in any way, because only God is really in control, and yet God does nothing to alleviate the endless suffering of mankind which is ultimately explained away yet again in a bizarre cop-out as being ‘the will of God’. The endless suffering of mankind is all due to the capricious will of the invisible and there really isn’t anything humans can do about it. It’s ‘predestined’ and literally beyond us – so why even try?
They seek to literally ‘fly out of here’ on a magical carpet of angels wings (literally – they actually believe they’re going to disappear one day), taking no responsibility or actions to the suffering they themselves have participated in and which they will never, ever be held accountable for. It is you, the unbeliever, who will be “judged” and ultimately, only for your “unbelief”. Their many crimes are already ‘forgiven’ by virtue of their ‘belief’ in the invisible. They’ve got a license from the invisible to rape, plunder, steal, murder and destroy as much as they want – because they believe. Virtually all will be forgiven.
What an incredible cop-out. What a delusional story. It is this sort of mental delusions which make them so incredibly dangerous.
Where does it come from? The book that so many place such ‘trust’ in and from the gross misinterpretations and torturous translations emanating from pulpits around the world. Christians do not know their own history or the true story of how the Bible was created, modified, redacted and censored. It’s just easier to go on ‘believing’ and being what they are, irresponsible and uninterested in reality.
They envision what cannot be seen, felt, touched or even experienced while alive, because for all practical purposes, they are dead to the living world and the life and experiences this world contains. They’re quite literally waiting to live the ‘eternal life’ they’ve been promised while ignoring this one (the real one). It’s unbelievably sad, tragic and pathetic. What happens here on Earth is of no real consequence or concern to them – unless it winds up being a part of the ‘fulfillment’ for their rapturous fantasies.
Everything that happens on Earth is viewed through this distorted lens of reality. Everything is filtered through to determine what is ‘real’ and what is not. What you wind up with is a schizophrenic delusional fantasy that denies reality. And now we’re all facing another reality – one of ‘them’ wants to be President of the United States with a nuclear arsenal.
This. Is. Insane.
It is death, not life that they have chosen to embrace while living in this world, through a deeply flawed understanding of their ‘faith’. Death and the reward to come has replaced living in the real world. Those that don’t make this cut are to be cast into a lake of firing for an eternity of torment, never to be forgiven their ‘unbelief’. Ancient superstitions and fears rule their beliefs, thoughts and actions, which have only worsened in recent years as new and torturous ‘interpretations’ and influential religious personalities have come about. Now we’re having to deal with candidates that truly believe these things and if (s)Elected to office, would be in a position to actually make them come true. But the contradictions in their theology should already be obvious, why does God need their help if all things are in accordance to his will? The impatience of evangelicals is also obvious (read on) as the world has already seen – and so are their tragic mistakes.
It’s an amazing, terrifying and horrible story which they have embraced, one which would have certainly appealed to superstitious and ignorant men and women of the ancient world who sought to escape their own suffering and oppression. But in the modern world, where we can fact check these claims and where we can grasp how the world truly operates?
Allowing these people into positions of power would be completely insane and would undoubtedly add more nails in America’s coffin. They want the End to come, because it would only then, finally, “validate” their erroneous beliefs after waiting so long for some sort of fulfillment. It’s what they’re all living for. That they’re willing to destroy the whole of civilization to gain this needs to be clearly understood for its dangers. It is deeply embedded in their views about life and their presumed “role” in the world.
Do not let them into office unless you wish to embrace more suffering on a global scale. This is what Bush did to Iraq and Afghanistan. Filling his cabinet with End Time believers, they tried to bring about biblical fulfillment and destroyed the lives of millions of people. They’ve never recovered from this assault. They were proud of what they did too, even claiming that this was the End Times and “God’s will”. As we all know, this failed miserably, God clearly was not ‘helping’ for some odd reason and America left a horrifying mess behind with countless dead, maimed and ruined lives.
Now we’re faced again with yet another (s)Election of Presidential candidates, some who have the same warped world views as Bush and his henchman did.
Do not let them into office. Do not let them water your lawn. Do not let them take out your garbage. Do not let them walk your dog or feed your cat. They’re delusional, schizophrenic and dangerous.
If you do, you may discover that mankind’s worst nightmare may just come true if by some absence of common sense, we let them have their ‘day’ with the fires of a nuclear ‘Sun’ as they enact their deepest fantasies upon the world.
And if that happens – you’re going to need a ‘new heaven’ and a ‘new earth’ which won’t be showing up for millions of years as the radioactive fires of this Earth finally cool down.
It is not ‘biblical fulfillment’ that scares me – it is the believers who think it is their ‘job’ to bring it to pass.