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May 14 2013

Perspective

Science does make gods look ridiculous, as the illustration below illustrates. (I’m putting it below the fold because it’s a big image.)

(Click for full sized image)

the-religious-universe

(via My Confined Space)

37 comments

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  1. 1
    YOB - Ye Olde Blacksmith is a Spocktopus cuddler

    Ow! You made me snarf hot coffee!

  2. 2
    Bronze Dog

    That’s one thing fundies never seem to grasp: Scale. If there was a creator god, the scale of the universe casts doubt on our importance to that god. Given the limitations on the laws of physics, even if we do develop the capability for interstellar travel, there’s going to be so much out there that we’ll never be able to make use of, plodding along at near-light speed unless we want to try our hand at throwing suns into the reactor of a wormhole generator or whatever.

    Even if such a god is concerned about humans, he seems to have an awful lot of frivolous, petty concerns instead of any sort of benevolence or coherent morality if you ask the fundies about him.

  3. 3
    Lofty

    Meh, you can blot out most of the universe simply by not looking at it. The only important part of creation is the bit you can dig up and burn.
    Telescopes are obviously tools of satan cos they can’t be used to study the babble.

  4. 4
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    That image immediately went on facebook. Hilarious :)

  5. 5
    pensnest

    That’s one of the reasons I stopped believing in the god I’d been brought up to – the scale is all wrong. That, and the universe is so awesome it really doesn’t need Someone In Charge.

  6. 6
    azpaul3

    “Don’t masturbate”

    Too late.

  7. 7
    Alex

    “No, not you… I meant you beige ones over there. Will you behave now or do I have to come down again?”

  8. 8
    obscure1

    Thanks P.Z. I needed that.

  9. 9
    marko

    I rarely feel compelled to type “lol”, but…

    lol

  10. 10
    Alex

    “Don’t masturbate”

    Too late.

    “Well, ok, then at least try to keep it down, will you? no that came out wrong, I mean keep it up… Oh me on a cracker, this is awkward.”

  11. 11
    markr1957

    It was learning about the universe in perspective that first made me realize that even if there was a god it was far more amazing than the puny pathetic joke of a god in the babble. Of course later in life I realized that no gods were required in the making of this universe.

  12. 12
    Pyra

    Oh, that was a great laugh. :)

  13. 13
    lpetrich

    Reminds me of Bertrand Russell’s The Theologian’s Nightmare in which an eminent theologian discovers how cosmically insignificant humanity is.

  14. 14
    Dr Marcus Hill Ph.D. (arguing from his own authority)

    Given the limitations on the laws of physics, even if we do develop the capability for interstellar travel, there’s going to be so much out there that we’ll never be able to make use of, plodding along at near-light speed unless we want to try our hand at throwing suns into the reactor of a wormhole generator or whatever.

    Not to mention that subluminal interstellar travel will be incredibly dull if we’re not allowed to masturbate.

  15. 15
    Cosmas

    There was a video version of this. It was more linear, arranging different stars by size, with a similar message at the end. I credit it as the first nail in the coffin of my theism. I call it the The Muslim Size Queen argument. Allahu Akbar (God is great) as a conceptual construct looks puny pales in comparison to an explainable scale of actual greatness.

  16. 16
    Draken

    Also, suppose you’re a 1st century jew, and although you don’t know terribly much about the world you live in, you’re curious: what’s the shape of this thing we’re standing on, are the moon and the stars stuck to the firmanent, how far away are they, are there any animals I’ve never seen, and so on, and so on.

    Then, someone’s born who is said to be, via some mysterious mechanism, not just ‘a prophet’ or ‘a god’, but the one Person who created this all. What is your most eminent question: (a) hey, can you walk on water? (b) hey, when you’re done walking on it, can you turn it into wine? (c) oh by the way, what is the nature of everything we see around us?

  17. 17
    kevinalexander

    Not to mention that subluminal interstellar travel will be incredibly dull if we’re not allowed to masturbate.

    Marcus, you’ve discovered why the wooly lard doesn’t want us to masturbate!
    If everyone diddled at the same time the energy released would open a wormhole and all of the kittens would fall through.

    OK, problem solved, now off to another site to test my theory.

  18. 18
    richardelguru

    Lofty
    “Telescopes are obviously tools of satan cos they can’t be used to study the babble.”

    Course they can!
    The Babble just has to be a long, long way away.
     
    (Though I admit turning pages might be a bit of a problem.)

  19. 19
    robro

    I guess Jesus is standing on the backs of the turtles.

  20. 20
    Patrick Monagin

    You’ve created the Total Perspective Vortex !

  21. 21
    thomasbloom

    Oh well, it’s at least a cheap sin, at about 4:00: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0AKvRvL5r3A

  22. 22
    blf

    Though I admit turning pages might be a bit of a problem.

    Use a completely unwound scroll. Just make sure the writing is facing you. And that it’s not a Möbius strip.

  23. 23
    Gregory Greenwood

    Lofty @ 3;

    Telescopes are obviously tools of satan cos they can’t be used to study the babble.

    I believe there are creationist xians out there who claim that all we can see and observe through astronomical instruments are deceptions either created by teh Debil to mislead humanity or by the Sky Fairy as a test of faith that will help it determine who it needs to curse/murder/condemn to an eternity of torture.

    It must take a lot of effort to be that consistently not even wrong…

  24. 24
    ChristineRose

    Isn’t amazing that there exists a being that can create all this omnisciently and omnipotently, and that he still cares about us enough to tell us not to masturbate?!

    Didn’t somebody post a video version of this once that made such a claim without irony? Except for the masturbation part. The host found something less squicky for Jesus to be concerned about. It was by…that minister. You know, the one with the best selling books that really don’t have mutt to do with the Bible? I can’t tell them apart either.

  25. 25
    changerofbits

    Very nice, made my morning. Well, since “I the LORD thy God am a jealous God”, maybe there’s another omni we can use to describe his greatness: omni-impotent

  26. 26
    Crissa

    I had that map from National Geographic on my wall from when it was released in the magazine until I was in university.

  27. 27
    Bronze Dog

    A god that would have created all this would not be human-like, and especially not like early iron age humans. The god of the Bible is best described as a really powerful iron age human with “wisdom” no different than the foolishness, savagery, and small-mindedness of the authors’ time. That fictional god is still kicking and screaming as Christians try to drag him closer to modern times while trying to excuse and rationalize away his outdated, deviant “wisdom.” If there was a hypothetical creator deity interested in human wellbeing, he would have been the first, clearly stated source for modern ideas instead of a reactionary pushing failed moralisms that were uncontroversial among savages or a source of nebulous metaphors that vaguely fit science if a Nostradamite squints and tilts his head just right while looking at them through a mirror, but look like Flat Earthism when looked at plainly.

  28. 28
    graham

    Interesting that Cockney rhyming slang for masturbation is “Having a Jodrell”, a reference to Manchester University’s radio telescope at Jodrell Bank.

  29. 29
    cag

    This type of imagery reinforces the absurdity that the christian god spent 5 days creating the earth and 1 day creating the rest of the universe.

  30. 30
    Rich Woods

    And on the seventh day he masturbated.

  31. 31
    mikeyb

    In the beginning was a white anglo-saxon protestant, with a beard shaved just well enough to not be mistaken for a hippie. Knew it all along.

  32. 32
    busterggi

    Now if that were Yog Sothoth instead of Jesus I might just believe it.

  33. 33
    gravityisjustatheory

    I prefer this for an example of increasingly impressive sizes, awesome music, and an illustration of the concept that Sci-Fi writers have no sense of scale:

  34. 34
    gravityisjustatheory

    Oops, sorry. Didn’t mean to embed that. How do you link to YouTube without embedding?

  35. 35
    consciousness razor

    Oops, sorry. Didn’t mean to embed that.

    Thanks to greasemonkey’s magic (PBUH), it isn’t embedded for me.

    How do you link to YouTube without embedding?

    There are two options:
    1) Fix the blog, so that it doesn’t do silly things like that. Not really an option for you, but I’m tossing it out there anyway.
    2) Put the link in an html tag, like so:
    <a href=”link address”>text to tell people what the link is about</a>

    With Firefox’s text formatting toolbar (or similar) all of the html junk is done automatically with a mouse click or two. But there is a (vague and not very useful) reference above the submit comment and preview buttons, in case you forget.

  36. 36
    Useless

    Thank you for the timely message. It almost made me break out singing Ken L Ration’s “My god’s bigger than your god…”.

  37. 37
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    @gravityisjustatheory: another option is to edit your URL down to youtube’s mini-address, like so:

    http://youtu.be/rUJzYSswcj0

    To find the text at the end look for the “v=”. If your link looks like
    (… ).youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rUJzYSswcj0
    then choose the rUJzYSswcj0

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