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Apr 14 2012

Blasphemy is everywhere these days

The Indian skeptic Sanal Edamaruku explained a “miracle” Jesus statuette that was dripping water: it was located near a drain, and attracting the water via capillary action. This was annoying to the people who had planned to sell the “holy water” in little bottles.

Some hours later, in a live program on TV-9, Sanal explained his findings and accused the Catholic Church of miracle mongering, as they were beating the big drum for the dripping Jesus statue with aggressive PR measures and by distributing photographs certifying the “miracle”. A heated debate began, in which the five church people, among them Fr. Augustine Palett, the priest of Our Lady of Velankanni church, and representatives of the Association of Concerned Catholics (AOCC) demanded that Sanal apologize.

But he refused. So they accused him of “blasphemy,” and he could be arrested at any moment.

 

11 comments

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  1. 1
    'Tis Himself

    So they accused him of “blasphemy,”

    Of course explaining how a religious con works is blasphemy. Just ask any abbot, apostle, archbishop, bishop, cardinal, cassock, chaplain, churchperson, cleric, clerk, curate, dean, divine, ecclesiast, ecclesiastic, elder, evangelist, father, friar, missionary, monsignor, padre, parson, pastor, person of the cloth, pontiff, preacher, predicant, priest, primate, pulpitarian, pulpiteer, rabbi, rector, reverend, sermonizer, shepherd, or vicar. Threatening the income of these folk is as blasphemous as denying the divinity of Jebus.

  2. 2
    Uncle Glenny

    Just ask any … primate,…

    I’m sure explanations by bonobos would be especially interesting.

  3. 3
    machintelligence

    Just curious: How do you prove blasphemy? And what is the penalty for making false accusations. It would appear that one person’s orthodoxy is another’s blasphemy.

  4. 4
    Shatterface

    Don’t miracles have to investigated, like sainthoods, before being formally acknowledged?

    I mean if the Pope looks at this and says it’s bollocks, and he’s infallible, then where does the prosecution stand?

  5. 5
    MarkNS

    I don’t get it. Aren’t these christians blaspheming hindu gods every time they proclaim yahweh to be the one true god? Why aren’t all the priests arrested. Every religion blasphemes every other one. Every vocal religious person in the country should, therefore, be arrested.

  6. 6
    Martyn

    No: 5 ‘Every vocal religious person in the country should, therefore, be arrested.’

    Indeed. And why stop at just that country. Why not the globe? :D

  7. 7
    hyperdeath

    Whenever someone mentions the Catholic Church’s history of persecuting its critics, they’re inevitably denounced by Catholic apologists as hateful anti-Catholic bigots. I wish these apologists would put the same effort into denouncing current examples of the Catholic Church persecuting its critics.

  8. 8
    Brian Jordan

    Isn’t it blasphemous to claim that the holy statue is pissing down its leg? Surely something to be mopped up then shut up about?

  9. 9
    Daver

    Wikipedia says that the office of Devil’s Advocate was abolished by John Paul II in 1983, that that allowed him to usher in an unprecedented number of elevations. I have no idea how the church decides what constitutes a miracle; my guess is that it’s less stringent now than it was before John Paul II.

  10. 10
    Grendels Dad

    The idea that someone could be in trouble for making a demonstrably true statement is mind boggling.

    Arguing over something bigger, something theoretical, I can sort of understand. Evolution or heliocentric are big concepts. But this? This is something people can wrap their heads around. It’s the sort of thing where you can take them by the hand and show them.

    This I -really- don’t get.

  11. 11
    Ravi Venkataraman

    I doubt there will be any prosecution on this charge. The courts in India tend to be quite liberal and tend to side with science and scientists. That is why the teaching of evolution in Indian schools has never been an issue even though it contradicts the dominant religion’s mythology.

    Of course, not having lived in India for the past two decades, I could be dead wrong.

    Ravi

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