Let’s suppose, just for the sake of argument

Bwahaha Andrew Brown is such a riot.

Is it really ludicrous that the Vatican should be claiming you can get time off purgatory by following the pope on Twitter?

Yes, Andrew, of course it fucking is!

Yes, it is ludicrous to think there’s a magic supernatural guy in the sky who transcends everything and is too vast and magical and everythings for mere humans to comprehend, who hunches over an iPad keeping track of human beings retweeting the pope. Yes, that is very very ludicrous.

There are obvious problems. If as a materialist you don’t believe in purgatory, or hell, or any kind of moral balancing in an afterlife, then the whole thing is absurd, though no more absurd than any other belief about purgatory.

No, actually, it is more absurd than other beliefs about purgatory, because of the absurd gulf between the ignorant medieval idea of purgatory and the modernity and technical knowledge of Twitter. There’s also the whole thing about the supposed fate of a putative eternal soul on the one hand and fiddling about with Twitter on the other. Yes, that is more absurd than other, vaguer or more traditional beliefs about purgatory. It is risibly more absurd.

But let’s suppose, just for the sake of argument, that the pope does have an informed opinion on what behaviour pleases God and benefits the soul.

Oh sure, and let’s suppose for the sake of argument that Cinderella is sitting next to me drinking champagne and playing Angry Birds. Let’s suppose any old ridiculous thing, just for the sake of argument, and then once we do that why guess what, it’s no longer absurd. The argument wins!

Or as a commenter put it

If you grant that the world’s poised on top of a giant tortoise, it’s not daft to think the tortoise could have five legs. Er …

Andrew, time for your summer break. Find a darkened room, and lie down with an iced pillow on your head. It’s all going to be all right.

Andrew is a funny, funny guy.


  1. smhll says

    Well, I personally LOL’d when I got to the punchline “following the pope on Twitter”.

  2. Omar Puhleez says

    Tweeting the Pope, googling God, posting on a pontiff, linkdinning the Lord, yahooing Yahweh…

    The expansion the Internet brings to theology passeth understanding.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *