RIP Philo

Drought blamed on lack of faith,23599,21361191-421,00.html - A LEADING Muslim cleric has blamed the devastating drought, climate change and pollution on Australians' lack of faith in Allah.

Wouldn't it be sweet if life were so simple? With faith the laws of physics would bend to your will and everyone could have free ice cream sodas.
Permalink son of parnas 
March 12th, 2007 11:55am
Oh, yeah, gimme that OLD time religion.

What's next, rain dances?  Prayers to Egyptian, Greek, Roman, or Persian 'gods'?

Does he have ANY idea how long people have been saying "lack of rain means the displeasure of the gods"?

Quick, let's find a virgin for the sacrifice.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
March 12th, 2007 12:01pm
"Wouldn't it be sweet if life were so simple?"

heh.  nope. wouldn't it be hugely frustrating to get to the end of your life and find that instead of working like a bastard that whole time you could have put your effort into generating faith and lived like a king/queen off the fat of the land?

if it turns out that the whole faith-based thing actually works, I for one am going to feel like a right prat.
Permalink Send private email zestyZucchini 
March 12th, 2007 12:02pm
>> Does he have ANY idea how long people have been saying "lack of rain means the displeasure of the gods"?

Wouldn't the length of time the saying has been repeated add to the saying's wisdom? You know .. "Force equals mass times acceleration" has been around a while too.
Permalink bleaty heartsheep 
March 12th, 2007 12:13pm
Good point.  The length of time an idea has been around really has no impact on its truth or fiction.

It's just that demagogues have been declaring the "wrath of god" on unbelievers for such a long time, you'd think that even demagogues would have realized by now what an empty and even hypocritical statement it is.

It says much more about the "priest" than it does about the world or the unbelievers.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
March 12th, 2007 12:21pm
Your very own quote from a few days back explains much. The human brain hates an explanatory vacuum. Where science gives little (why a drought?), faith fills the void.

It's been filling that void for a long time, and will continue to, because, as you hinted at, randomness may become more narrowly bound (I'm fairly confident of the weather for the next 4 days, while I used to predict only 2 day ahead), but it may not get any narrower in number (the number of 4-day periods equals the number of 2-day periods).
Permalink bleaty heartsheep 
March 12th, 2007 12:30pm
Oh look, they found their own version of Pat Robertson. Next, like Pat Robertson, they'll blame 911 and huricane katrina on gays and lack of religion.
Permalink Peter 
March 12th, 2007 4:11pm

"Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of, even perhaps because of, the lack of evidence."

Richard Dawkins, my new favorite atheist.
Permalink AMerrickanGirl 
March 12th, 2007 8:28pm
For crying out loud, consider the source. It's Rupert's trashiest local rag (from the same stable as Fox). If you can bear to, read the cited article  critically.

This is what the cleric said:

"The fear of Allah is not there. So we have now a polluted earth, a polluted water, a wasteland," he told a meeting this year.

"What are the people now crying for? The prophet told you hundreds of years ago, 'Look after the water'."

Seems reasonable in the circumstances. As for the rest of the article it immediately becomes a mashup of what someone else said, somewhere else, sometime to pad out the message to fill the gaps between the tabloid ads.

"A Sunday Herald Sun investigation also found clerics railing against "evil" democracy, vilifying Jews and Christians and encouraging jihad and polygamy. ..."

I for one would welcome some rain. If it happens to come by dint of devotion to Murrimupp the Frog God then let it. Up Mildura way there's been outdoor ceremonies:

Bucketing bathwater to the outdoors to water plants is getting friggin' old i tells ya.