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About jonbirch

animator, illustrator, character designer, graphic designer. music producer/recording musician. co-owner of PROOST. proost.co.uk
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21 Responses to 1039

  1. beckyw says:

    Found this funny til I remembered the whole speck plank thing. Not that I’m a bishop or anything, but definitely could improve on the self-control thing.

  2. subo says:

    oh, love it

    – work in progress

  3. Forrest says:

    Interesting the cultures who hide the women under black tents because it is recognized that the women are the cause of the men’s lack of self control.

  4. goodfield says:

    I’m controlling myself! :-)

  5. JF says:

    How much better the world would have been if all those dozens/hundreds of catholic priests had exercised some self-control. Apart from all the very persuasive philosophical arguments for the lack of existence of god and the complete absence of any reason whatsoever to assume that god exists, the one thing that confirms my atheism is the fact that those who profess to have devoted their lives to god and have the gall to take confessions of individuals’ private thoughts and deeds on god’s behalf are the ones who clearly have no belief whatsoever that god sees their actions behind closed doors. And nor does the current pope, who helped cover it up. Doesn’t that make you think!?

  6. Cliff says:

    I think I’m controlling myself. Damn! Where’s the remote. I do have a habit of channel hopping though.

  7. subo says:

    Yep, JF, (and, I’m assuming your wanting an argument) the church has committed some horrendous crimes through the ages, and tried to cover most of them up, and is often locked into a controlling mind set. though it’s an amazing experience to belong to a genuinely creative, open, loving church community

    and yet, God’s still there for us, – your choice of course if you want to be an atheist, if you want to adhere to a case for or against, then check out all the info

  8. JF says:

    No I don’t want an argument! :-) A bit of debate is nice…
    It’s not so much about the church committing crimes, it’s about what that says about people at the top of the church and whether they really believe what they preach. Let’s face it, if the pope doesn’t believe his sins will find him out, then why should anyone else worry? To my mind, it’s your own conscience you have to live with while you’re alive… even that would have prevented most of the worst excesses of the religions (and Forrest is right, making women wear tents and the circumcision of babies are other examples), but somehow religion encourages/enables people to override their natural moral code on so many fronts.
    Creative, open, loving communities are available in all walks of life. You don’t have to go to a church group in order to experience that. Which means you can listen to your conscience again and possibly live an even better life.

  9. Ros says:


    Spot on. I loathe the assertion that women should cover up because they just encourage men. Not only are they trying to control the woman, but they patronise the man (by assuming that he can’t look after his own mind).

  10. Carole says:

    I’m not brilliant at self control…especially where food is concerned.

  11. subo says:

    spot on JF “Creative, open, loving communities are available in all walks of life.” – because we are made in the image of God

  12. JF says:

    In line with the theme of the cartoon, I will exercise some self-control here and leave it to the wider world’s sense of tautology, logic and (I hope) fair-mindedness to evaluate that one, subo!

  13. Caroline TOO says:

    self control… sigh… if only…

    I know that it’s a fruit of the spirit, but I really need to find a pip for that particular fruit so that it can start to grow…


  14. markk says:

    caroline too
    there are other fruit. we can’t all be a banana :),
    and jf
    religion can also help some people build on their natural moral code, and start to make sense of it.

  15. subo says:

    sorry JF …. thought you were up for a humdinger, – & it’s stopped before it started, + no one else chipped in, ah, – must have got the wrong end of the stick again

  16. Sarah says:

    Su, wouldn’t worry yourself too much.

    JF, gotta love those tautologies ;-)

  17. subo says:

    thanks Sas, am not – the arguments are much more succinctly put by others, and easily accessible

    I guess though I feel a need to challenge comments that insult my faith, why are Christians seen as legitimate targets?, why is it ok to say hurtful things? people don’t say such stuff about Buddhists, Pagans or members of all kinds of faiths

    there’s loads of scope on this blog for a good discussion, to look at different views, to share personal experiences, it’s a treasure, and I enjoy reading people’s comments on all kinds of things

  18. jonbirch says:

    jf… churches, kids homes, schools (historically), most recently care homes for the elderly and for those with special needs. all proclaiming to believe in serving others, some failing miserably through the misbehaviour of people in their organisations, sometimes or often highlighting major institutional problems. utterly wrong, always shocking. always a reminder to me of how fragile and twisted human nature can be and how thin the veneer of civilisation is.

  19. JF says:

    OK subo, what is it you’d like to say about paganism or buddhism? I’d say that both can provide individuals with a focus where they can feel good about themselves and perhaps be motivated to help and serve others, but ultimately they are based on nothing but wish-thinking, superstition and the wilful belief in entities which do not exist. There are people from within the buddhist and pagan communities who fall short of the ideals of those belief systems and do these belief systems discredit, yet neither their failing nor the adherence of the ‘faithful’ does anything to add an iota of validity to their claims that their gods are real. I think it would be unwise to teach these belief systems to children in terms which make them seem factual.
    So at least I am consistent. :-)

  20. Kim says:

    hmm, I understand where Subo is coming from, having been pilloried and insulted on another social media site today because i am a Christian, in the light of the fact that the Norwegian gunman has been apparently identified as a ‘christian’ and therefore this makes it ok to lump all of us in together as the cause of all wars and violence. *sigh*

    its hard to even have a civil discussion at all when there is no room allowed for different perspectives to be offered. :-(

  21. JF says:

    Kim I think this is the perfect place to offer different perspectives. The ‘christian’ tag on that Norwegian lunatic is a red herring in many ways; ‘christian’ is being used in his case as a sectarian label in the vague sense of wanting to resist the encroachment of islam, I think.
    Apparently among his notes / written rationale was a very apposite quote from John Stuart Mill, (definitely not a christian) who pointed out that, if you can convince someone that they are doing something for / in the name of god, then you can get them to do much more outrageous (and immoral) things than any other justification. Certainly political motivations are not nearly as strong. So while your average ‘faithful’ do not recognise the motivations of the lunatic fringe, they find themselves bearing the same headline religious name/label. The problem is that the so-called ‘holy texts’ of the major religions really do offer justification for violence, oppression and murder; some of this is a matter of interpretation, in other cases there is no escaping the imperative, unless you are wilfully interpreting these texts to match your own beliefs and values, rather than getting those values from the text.

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