Friday, November 2, 2007

Pot calling kettle a piece of kitchenware

I stumbled across this post today, wherein razib highlights a comment left on another blog post:
It seems to me that Mormonism is indeed a lot more illogical than mainstream Christianity. It suffers from logical contradictions that Christianity does not- for example, how can someone be retroactively baptized? Why would God say that polygamy was OK for Brigham Young but then not OK anymore after Utah became a state? How do the Gods of multiple universes interact? Most importantly, how is it even logically possible for man to become God? This last bit, about man becoming God, is not just highly offensive to me, it's also logically incoherent- if God and man are not inherently of unfathomably different kind, then the term 'God' has no meaning.

Yeah. "Normal" Christianity suffers doesn't have any of those problems. Nothing like a man being a god in Christianity, no sir! And God certainly never changed his mind anywhere from the Old Testament through the New--consistent the whole way through. And as for multiple gods interacting, well, Christianity doesn't have that problem, since its three gods all do the same thing (kinda like this), except when they don't.

I've encountered this sort of thing a lot--people going on and on about how crazy Mormonism or something else is, apparently totally oblivious to how completely batshit their own religion is. I remember a conversation between my parents and a friend of theirs from a while back that was precisely about this--Romney being a Mormon--and everything they said I just sat and mused, "And how is that any different from, say, Catholicism?"

Or people will bring up the fact that blacks weren't accepted into the priesthood of the LDS until 1978, as if this somehow meant that current Mormons must be racist. In fact, the above commenter continued
There is also some reason to believe that Joseph Smith faked his supposed 'revelations', most notably making up the whole polygamy business to justify his prodigious lusts. Not to mention that Mormonism served until the 1970s as America's last religious bastion of racism, and continues until today as a bastion of patriarchy.

Yeah, Mormons were the last religious bastion of racism, which explains why Bob Jones University wouldn't allow interracial dating until 2000. Must've been the dreaded Mormon influence. And as for patriarchy among Christendom? Too easy. Don't even have to bother with that one.

But I am endlessly amused that this commenter can sneer that Smith faked his revelations, and yet say this after being told that the word 'virgin' as applied to Mary was a mistranslation:
When they chose that term to translate 'young woman', whether it was gramatically correct or not, they presumably did so because they had been inwardly prompted to do so by God, who intended to make it clear to the world that there would be a virgin birth.

Yeah. Smith? Must've been making it up. But a bunch of random illiterate yokels who mistranslated a word that led to this guy's unhealthy fixation with "Saint" Mary? Clearly, their typographical error was directed by God. Paul's hotline to god is probably also undeniable, and nobody could ever question the claims of whatever drug-addled sot wrote Revelations.

I do have to wonder, though, what exactly God was doing when they wrote the original draft of the Bible. Why did he let that error of 'young woman' get into the original Hebrew and then have to have it "fixed" later? He was probably out telling Joseph Smith to fuck a lot.

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