It’s Just A Book.

Yeah, this pretty much sums it up:

Found over at Atheist Media Blog.

41 thoughts on “It’s Just A Book.

  1. I genuinely doubt that many people with a book in one place can actually exist, outside of a school or library.

  2. It’s more than just a book…. Printed on soft enough paper, it makes excellent TOILET PAPER!!!!

  3. It’s much more than just a book. The face of Helen of Troy launched a thousand ships. That book has launched millions of ships, rockets, ballistic missiles, witch burnings, black man lynchings, etc, etc. And, as Moloch noted, I, too, doubt that many people could be found reading, especially such great books as Alick in Wonderland, Brave New World, and other literary giants.And, on a New York subway? Actually, anything is possible on a New York subway.

    🙂

    Peace.

  4. “That Sam-I-Am. That Sam-I-Am. I do not like that Sam-I-Am…” I think the video would have been a little less pretentious (and funnier) if one of them had read Dr. Suess. (Though the inclusion of Twilight was pretty good.)

    I don’t believe “it’s just a book” but this does a good job making it clear that you don’t win any more converts being an ass and reading it aloud to unwilling listeners than you would reading Mein Kampf or A Communist Manifesto.

  5. Leguru, the Huxley book isn’t “Brave New World,” it’s “Doors of Perception.” Same author, but the only thing the two books have in common is the mescál.

  6. You say mescal like it was a bad thing.

    And I thought Catcher in the Rye was required reading in high school. 😉

    Peace

  7. I would love to see this actually happen! I am so sick of the religious nuts who think it’s there right to shove their opinion down other peoples throats. Go believe whatever the hell you want to believe, and leave me out of it! SIT DOWN. SHUT UP. IT’S JUST A FUCKIN BOOK.

  8. What I find most offensive is that all the other books are classical fiction, but then they had to go and stick Twilight in there. Yes I have read it and the whole series is nothing more than teen smut. They could of stuck Orwell or Melville in there. But nope, Twilight infiltrates all. 🙄 Otherwise, excellent video.

  9. I think we should do our best to keep a random good book on us at all times so that if somebody is reading the bible out loud, we will have a book to read out loud as well 🙂

  10. If it was just a book, you wouldn’t have to make a video to tell us it was “just a book”.

  11. Actually, given the average human’s tendency to make mountains out of molehills, it does require making a video to tell you it’s just a book.

  12. I’m a quite Christian and this video pisses me the FUCK off. It’s a fucking free country and we can do whatever we want, whether it be read a bible aloud or make a stupid prejudice video about the Bible. It’s not just a book. It’s a very important book to many, I hate to break it to you. I want you to go make a video about all the Muslims in the Middle East, or the Buddhists in Asia. Either way, whatever religion, any person can choose to spread their religion HOWEVER they want and shouldn’t have to worry about pompous assholes like you who think they are a smart, tortured artist. You may be speaking for you and you minuscule group of Atheist friends, but that doesn’t mean you have to make an offensive video about your views. While we’re in church learning about God, Allah, or whoever we choose to believe, you can go with your friends to a nice little Atheist coffee shop and discuss how much you hate this book, which you didn’t have the balls to mention was THE BIBLE.

  13. Erin wrote:

    …which you didn’t have the balls to mention was THE BIBLE.

    Sorry Erin, we assumed you guys were familiar enough with what the Bible says that we didn’t need to emphatically state that it was a Bible. I keep making the mistake of assuming most Christians have read their book of fairytales.

    And it’s still just a book.

  14. Erin:
    Like Les said,

    And it’s still just a book.

    of fairytales. The Bible’s popularity has some remarkable resemblances to the Harry Potter books of fairytales. Please check out this review online: http://www.jesuspotterharrychrist.com/ and read the first four chapters, for FREE! Come back and visit us and try to discuss your views in a civil manner.

    Peace.

  15. I agree with Erin. This is a free country, and people should have the right to read books, out loud, and wherever they like. Perhaps readings of The God Delusion and God is not Great can be organized at local churches.

  16. Opted to go private with email rather than comment publicly on the blog, eh?

    As for the question: To what end would that action serve? I find Bibles much more useful for study (better to argue with the Biblicaly illiterate) than as kindling. I’m not the sort to burn any book without good reason and the Bible is just another book.

    Les

    -To answer your question: I do not care if this conversation is carried out via email or blog. I felt that by responding by email was more efficient since I did not have the page open. However, I would be more than willing to post the entire conversation on the blog if you would like. And to put it bluntly and not sound like a pompous English professor: people like you really do piss me the fuck off. You try and act so smart and literate, when really, you’re probably just some irritable old man who lets his keyboard do the talking. If somebody feels the need to talk about the Bible out loud, then maybe he or she feels very passionate about it, which I admire. The world needs more people who believe in something so passionately, and less of snarky, pessimistic assholes like you who try and make a video to get their view across.

  17. Eddie wrote:

    If it was just a book, you wouldn’t have to make a video to tell us it was “just a book”.

    @ Erin:
    @ leguru:

    No, thank you. I would rather be a bitch about my views than be civil.

  18. Ooo. She’s back to play some more.

    Erin wrote:

    Opted to go private with email rather than comment publicly on the blog, eh?

    As for the question: To what end would that action serve? I find Bibles much more useful for study (better to argue with the Biblicaly illiterate) than as kindling. I’m not the sort to burn any book without good reason and the Bible is just another book.

    Les

    For those of you late to the party, Erin asked in email if I would be willing to burn the Bible in front of Christians.

    -To answer your question: I do not care if this conversation is carried out via email or blog. I felt that by responding by email was more efficient since I did not have the page open. However, I would be more than willing to post the entire conversation on the blog if you would like.

    Great! There’s no reason I should be the only one in on the fun.

    And to put it bluntly and not sound like a pompous English professor: people like you really do piss me the fuck off. You try and act so smart and literate, when really, you’re probably just some irritable old man who lets his keyboard do the talking.

    First I should mention that I didn’t make the video. I simply liked it enough to share here on my blog.

    Second, yes, I let my keyboard do a lot of my talking because it reaches a much wider audience than I’m otherwise capable of reaching. That doesn’t mean I shrink away from presenting my views in person. You can ask anyone who knows me personally that I’m not afraid to engage folks in real life anymore than I am on the Internet.

    If somebody feels the need to talk about the Bible out loud, then maybe he or she feels very passionate about it, which I admire. The world needs more people who believe in something so passionately, and less of snarky, pessimistic assholes like you who try and make a video to get their view across.

    Fair enough, so then what’s the problem with the other folks in that video standing up and reading from books they feel passionate about? If it’s OK for the Bible thumper then why not for anyone else who has a favorite book? Are Christians the only ones allowed to force their beloved text on people who just want to get home on the train? Have you even stopped to consider that perhaps no one else on that train cares to hear the Bible read aloud to them? That perhaps it’s the Christian depicted in this video who is being a rude asshole?

    No, thank you. I would rather be a bitch about my views than be civil.

    Congratulations. You’ve accomplished your goal. Though it does make you a hypocrite to be complaining about me being an asshole after admitting the above.

  19. I see no reason to call me a hypocrite. It’s a bitch to bitch conversation, and I’m not afraid to admit it. But seeing as how you are so hell-bent on criticizing Christians on their public displays, consider this: yes, there is the occasional Christian who hands out pamphlets or reads aloud from their Bible, but at the same time, there are terrorists who are willing to crash planes into buildings and blow up subways. Who is the real problem here? Who should you really be criticizing?

    Erin

  20. Erin wrote:

    I see no reason to call me a hypocrite.

    So self-awareness isn’t a strong suit for you. OK.

    It’s a bitch to bitch conversation, and I’m not afraid to admit it.

    I’ve always fancied myself more of a bastard, but whatever floats your boat.

    But seeing as how you are so hell-bent on criticizing Christians on their public displays, consider this: yes, there is the occasional Christian who hands out pamphlets or reads aloud from their Bible, but at the same time, there are terrorists who are willing to crash planes into buildings and blow up subways. Who is the real problem here? Who should you really be criticizing?

    So now I’m curious: How many entries other than this one have you read before deciding you know everything you need to know about me to draw judgement from?

    You seem to think that I’ve never criticized anyone of another faith. You also seem to think that Christians haven’t done anything worse than handing out a pamphlets or being obnoxious on a subway.

    That’s just a small sample, I have lots more, but I think I’ve made my point. You still haven’t answered the questions from my last reply. Why is it OK for Christians to be obnoxious on a train and no one else?

  21. @ Les:
    @ Les:

    Well Les, to answer your question: who ever said no one else can’t be obnoxious on train? I didn’t…
    And I have read quite a few to conclude (in my own opinion, I could be wrong) that you’re very against public displays of Christianity, or rather, faith in general, and you especially don’t like The Church to be affiliated with the State. And now you seem to be taking my words out of context. I know for a fact that there are radical Christians out in the world who do horrible things (if you made a video about that, I would not be in opposition), but the point I was trying to get across was that, while you are sitting behind a keyboard and posting videos about such a small problem in the world, just because it irks you, there are much more serious things going on around you. INCLUDING: terrorism from both radical Islamics and Christians.

  22. Erin wrote:

    Well Les, to answer your question: who ever said no one else can’t be obnoxious on train? I didn’t…

    It’s true that you never said that specifically, it was the implication I took to you being upset about the video. In which case then I have to wonder what your problem with the video is. It’s just a bunch of passionate people exercising their right to be obnoxious about a book on a train.

    And I have read quite a few to conclude (in my own opinion, I could be wrong) that you’re very against public displays of Christianity, or rather, faith in general, and you especially don’t like The Church to be affiliated with the State.

    Well you got one out of three statements right. Overall I don’t really care about PDPs so long as their not being promoted by the government. You wanna put a creche up on the lawn of your home, church, or business then be my guest. But if you wanna do it on public land then be prepared to allow any and all who want to follow suit with their own displays which you may not agree with. I even think the odious Phelps clan from Westboro Baptist Church have a right to protest outside of funerals and other events with their God Hates Fags signs. I think they’re assholes for doing so, but they have the right to engage in such a public display if they wish.

    As for faith, I have no problems with it until it makes people stupid and/or crazy. Then I usually just point out how it makes them stupid and/or crazy. I’ve never suggested that the right to being stupid and/or crazy should be taken away from them.

    And now you seem to be taking my words out of context.

    I didn’t take anything out of context. I simply stated what you appeared to be implying.

    …the point I was trying to get across was that, while you are sitting behind a keyboard and posting videos about such a small problem in the world, just because it irks you, there are much more serious things going on around you. INCLUDING: terrorism from both radical Islamics and Christians.

    Really? Gosh, I didn’t realize that. I was totally unaware that there were more serious things going on. Thank you SO MUCH for enlightening me! How could I have been so blind??

    What I find most amusing is that you’re taking time out from dealing with all those much more important issues to be upset with me for being irked at things you consider to be trivial problems. You could have shrugged your shoulders and moved on to some other site, but you’re apparently too petty to do that.

  23. You are SO welcome for bringing you up to date. Any time, Les. And why, good sir, why should I merely shrug my shoulders and move on? Is this not a blog where one is free to comment whatever they please? Do you not want me to comment on your post, and create controversy, to exercise my brain? And I will NOT just move on when I feel so passionately about a subject.

  24. The irony is that it was the Jesus of the Gospels who seemed to oppose ostentatious public displays of faith. Christians should sit in their closets and read the Bible to themselves based on that Biblical teaching. That way everybody wins.

    Les liked the video and agreed with the view that public proselytizing is obnoxious. No one has implied that it is on par with terrorism; a straw man contrived in puerile desperation.

    Plurality and inclusion do not require that I like everything that the other person says.

  25. I’m sorry that the only Christian representative seems a bit insane, but it’s not hard to understand why. The point that you’re making is that it is “only a book” but that doesn’t seem like that much of a statement. Books are incredibly important, and books written 2,000 years ago tend to be even more so. Finally, if the authors of the book are to be believed, then the facts within the book are quite important. In summary, books are just books; they are the ship, not the cargo, but that doesn’t mean the cargo is pointless.

  26. J. wrote:

    I’m sorry that the only Christian representative seems a bit insane, but it’s not hard to understand why.

    On that point we are in agreement, though I suspect for differing reasons.

    J. wrote:

    Books are incredibly important, and books written 2,000 years ago tend to be even more so.

    I agree that many books are incredibly important, but I don’t agree that all are. Nor do I see why something written 2,000 years ago should be more important simply due to its age. I can certainly see the interest in it to an anthropologist, but I get the feeling that’s not what you’re suggesting.

    J. wrote:

    Finally, if the authors of the book are to be believed, then the facts within the book are quite important.

    You’ve yet to establish that there’s any reason to believe said authors.

    J. wrote:

    In summary, books are just books; they are the ship, not the cargo, but that doesn’t mean the cargo is pointless.

    Doesn’t mean that it isn’t pointless as well. Or that it deserves any more reverence than any other book.

  27. I’m gonna agree with Les on all points here. Just because it might be a book that is important to many…doesn’t make it right…Example: At one point in history it was believed that the world was flat. Now granted, that belief never caused witch burnings, lynchings or god forbid- the crusades. The point of the video is to show that to those of us rational enough to realize that its just a book written by men who were either trippin out (moses and his shrooms) or had a steep political agenda (see middle ages/anything not jesus), it is just that…A BOOK. Granted books have power (see Hitler and Mien Kampf) but only if we are foolish enough to grant them that. The problem with faith, particularly blind faith is that it grants power based upon nothing. You wouldn’t take candy from a stranger, why would you take your religious doctrine from a bunch of strangers who had ancient political agendas?
    Further more @ Erin…You claim to be “Christian” and act like this??? Swearing, name calling, and attempting to incite people and generally making an ass out of yourself…yeah I guess Jesus would approve.

  28. I dislike the bad name that most of these ‘Christians’ are putting on the rest of the Christians, and I also dislike the way that everyone has come to hate Christians as a result. To some it may just be a book but to others it is the basis of their entire religion. Mind you I also get the point of this video, that people don’t want to be preached to and as a result get upset. For example how would everyone feel if it was the Islamic people that were attempting to get every woman to wear a Hijab (that is probably spelled wrong and for which I apologize), or the Buddhists trying to get everyone to convert to their way of living, or the Wicca. I live with two people who are both Buddhist and Wicca, and I still love my Mother and my sister, even though I’m Christian, and I accept their ways and what they do, I even support them in their chosen religion.
    Mind you, Christians are the most well known for attempting to shove the Bible down other people’s throats. Although I do agree with attempting to tell people about the Word of God, I don’t agree with telling and forcing those who don’t want to listen to listen. Get along with everyone, the Bible preaches to love each other, not to hate everyone who isn’t a Christian.

  29. Don’t know how I missed this post, but I noticed Tayla’s comment on the main page.

    Tayla, as a Christian it’s difficult for you to really sense how pervasive Christian culture is, and perhaps even more difficult for you to know what it’s like to not be Christian in that pervasive environment. Blaming the loudest Christians is withholding too much “credit” from the moderate ones who give the louder ones cultural cover.

    Today our campus is covered by chalk messages from students who are standing up (their term) for Christ. Well goodie for them. There’s a church every few blocks enjoying tax-exempt city services and the general approval of our entire culture, but they’re standing up for Christ. Our university has 45 religious RSO’s and only two humanist/atheist, but they’re standing up for Christ. I go into a professor’s office and learn from a poster on the wall that life without God “would be meaningless”. Professors can put anti-evolution statements on their office doors, and office workers festoon department desks with personal religious memorabilia, but they’re standing up for Christ. How brave they are. Do they imagine themselves as the heroes of a Kirk Cameron movie?

    Christianity is considered “normal”. The Christian like you who accepts people of other faiths stands out as an exception in that culture, and most other Christians think less of you for it. Which seems backwards to me.

  30. @ decrepitoldfool:
    @ Decrepitoldfool
    So I am an atheist, but decrepitold’fool’ you show yourself to be exactly that, a fool. Tayla gives an honest and non-forceful presentation of her beliefs. Your little diatribe just seems pointless and actually contrary to what many educated atheists (like Les) preach. In the way that you would condemn the “Bible thumper” for pushing their ideologies on you, you are willing to do the same. Here i’ll break it down so you can understand. Erin is to You as Tayla is to Les. In the end you don’t believe in an afterlife correct? So why not have the tolerance that many on the other side of the aisle are unwilling to have. But I suppose that this could be infinitely regressive. Me telling you that you are intolerant is somewhat intolerant. And anyone pointing that out is being intolerant of my intolerance. All of which detracts of why we are here. A very witty video.

  31. “you can go with your friends to a nice little Atheist coffee shop”

    Hah! That’s the funniest thing I’ve read all week!

  32. John, you missed DOF’s point:

    Christianity is considered “normal”. The Christian like you who accepts people of other faiths stands out as an exception in that culture, and most other Christians think less of you for it. Which seems backwards to me.

    He was complimenting Tayla and showing how she would not be appreciated by her fellow “Christians”. That wasn’t being intolerant, merely pointing out the hypocrisy and intolerance of most “Christians”.

    Peace.

  33. I think we’re all entitled to an opinion, although at the end of the day the religious debate can not be solved through purely logical debate, because religion does not use logic. Religion is about spirituality, and if one tries to think about it in a logical way, it’s bound to return “Not Computable”. Conversely, atheists are constantly frustrated with religious folk bringing spirituality into a debate, because they believe it doesn’t belong in the conversation.
    If you go in to a religious debate under the parameters of logic, you’re missing out on a huge aspect of religion, and the religious side is likely to feel that their beliefs are not truly being portrayed, while the atheist will wonder “How can they believe this? It’s so illogical!”
    To those who say arguments should be entirely logical along with all of our decisions, I say enjoy life, because it would be pointless to argue otherwise.
    “Religion, the only debate where everyone comes in with a bias, and no one leaves with a solution.” -Anonymous
    P.S. Religion isn’t an issue, it’s a personal decision. No matter what conclusions are made here, a person must decide based on their mind, body, and soul. That’s not to say discussion isn’t good; we should talk about it to try to understand it, but let’s not come in and say “Alright we’re going to end this whole religious debate once and for all!” That won’t work. My suggestion is that when it’s no longer beneficial, i.e. helping both of us learn about the other’s perspective, that’s when it no longer has any practical application.

  34. The sentiment that religion should be immune to critique because it exempts itself from reason is quite taxing. I would say that religion should be criticized precisely because it is so unreasonable. The idea that we should throw reason to the wind is the mentality of a drug addict. Decisions and beliefs with no foundation of thought or evidence deserve no respect.

    The notion that religion is spiritual and therefore that it is immune to logical critique is not consistent with Christian tradition. Putting aside the ubiquitous bickering between Christians over points of doctrine, we can see this in the Bible. When allegations are made against Jesus by “witnesses” the evangelist is quick to note that their statements were “inconsistent.” St. Augustine certainly took no prisoners when it came to the enigmatic beliefs of the Pagans. A Pagan could argue that Jupiter and Apollo are beyond our comprehension, and that using reason to judge their myths is futile. But that was not Augustine’s perspective; if a Pagan myth was illogical or foolish he dismissed it as such.

    If an atheist notes inconsistency or irrationality in Christianity or in the Bible, that is fair game. We owe religionists no favors.

  35. Religion isn’t an issue, it’s a personal decision. No matter what conclusions are made here, a person must decide based on their mind, body, and soul.

    Yes, and if the mind doesn’t have some logic to hang onto, the body and soul will go with any snake-oil salesman out there. That’s why logic and reason are so important in picking a religion or philosophy. If it doesn’t make sense, maybe it isn’t a good direction to go for you and your family. And maybe it isn’t a good direction for society, as well. Remember the witch hunts and the Inquisition?

    Food for thought.

    Peace.

  36. I fucking hate people who stand up and shout on trains, whether it’s a religious asshole or some “rapper” who feels the need to loudly share his “art.” One of these days, I’m going to stop being so polite and knock every one of their fucking teeth out.

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