Religion Rundown September 24th

Posted on September 22, 2012 by

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On Tuesday September 18, 2012 a fragment of papyrus was released containing probable evidence that Jesus considered Mary,the virgin mother of his child, to be his wife. Karen King, an expert in the history of Christianity, said, “Christian tradition has long held that Jesus was unmarried even though there was no reliable historical evidence to support that.” Now, thanks to a Professor at The University of Harvard, there is proof alluding to the the counter argument of the nuptial between Jesus and Mary. The words,”Jesus said to them, my wife,” written in a language of ancient Egyptian Christians, are being doubted of their validity, but contain enough seemingly legitimate information that the are continuing to be pursued in research by creditable scholars in the religious sector. Below is a picture of the newly exposed piece of papyrus containing the inclination of Jesus’ wife:

Atheism in Eastern Germany is playing the role of a big road block in the unification of Germany as a country, and is not making the establishment of the European Union (EU) any easier. A recent study of Eastern German citizens, who knows how valid, found that 52.1% of people asked whether they believed in God identified themselves as atheists. That is a 41.8% more people in Eastern Germany that define themselves that way, in comparison to the citizens of Western Germany. Researchers believe that this anti-religous mass one of the many results of the communist rule in Eastern Germany between 1945 and 1990. That area in the EU also experience a period of time where, “…young people were brought up in a highly ideological atmosphere and were required to undergo a so-called Jugendweihe – a sort of atheist confirmation.” which goes without saying, plays a huge role in the current numbers of atheism. The rapid and drastic decline of the Protestant religion is believed to be another contributing factor to the rise in atheism. Of the 25% who do identify themselves as religious, 21% of them are self acclaimed followers of the diminishing religion. The question on whether the EU should proclaim itself as a Christian entity is currently turning into a question of  if atheism would serve as a more accurate portrayal.

The anti-Islam film, created in the United States, in which, the Islamic prophet Muhammad was mocked and derogatorily depicted, on top of the Pakastanian government deciding to declare a national day of protest against the film, cause violent protests in the middle east this past week. Various protests made up of tens of thousands of people, escalated into violent unrest that ended up killing, a reported, 15 people and wounding 120. Mobs attacked local buildings and businesses of no political or international significance, a number of movie cinemas close to the Afghanistan border were set into flames during the mob attacks. This civil unrest and rage is not just aimed at the United States, or the makers of the controversial film, but also at the Pakastanian government. Tabarak Lateef, a 22 year old protester in Islamabad said, “[President Asif Ali] Zardari is a man with no grace, he should resign. Our rulers are traitors, they are American slaves and they should be ashamed of themselves.” The video has uprooted some huge conflicts that, by the looks of it, have remained dormant within the citizens of Pakistan until now.

Cindy Lee Garcia, an actress in the film, “Innocence of Muslims”, that has caused global controversy sued the film’s producer as well as YouTube, on the platform that the anti-Islam movie was “endangering” her and the cause of death threats against her, according to the Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Luis Lanvin ruled, “The request for a temporary restraining order is denied. The plaintiff has not shown a likelihood to prevail on the merits.” Google’s lawyer, Timothy Alger argued that, “an actor’s rights don’t protect that person from how a film is viewed by the general public.” He made the analogy using Arnold Schwarzenegger, with the conclusion that if her claims were legitimate we would see him as a cyborg in ‘Terminator”. Although that is a fair comparison, the movie “Terminator” did not portray an underlying attack at a specific group of people, as did the anti-Islam film. Below is a picture of Cindy Lee Garcia:

The ban on the international trade of ivory  in 1989, has caused the ivory black market to be on the rise, and a National Geographic investigation found that demand for religious art pieces carved out of the precious material has been the key factor in the consistently hight demand. Bryan Christy, an investigative reporter, whose article, “Ivory Worship,” is included in the new edition of National Geographic magazine, released Friday (Sept. 14), made a statement accusing the Vatican of not taking any active steps to discourage the ivory trade, which primarily comes from illegal sources. Christy stated,  “The Vatican has recently demonstrated a commitment to confronting transnational criminal problems … but it has not signed the CITES treaty and so is not subject to the ivory ban.” Elephant poaching levels are at an all time high and the majority of the traces of ivory sales all lead back to Christianity. The elephant is a symbol of Thailand and is revered in Buddhism, the idea that the elephant is being poached to make symbols and objects used for the Christian faith an the expense of the Buddhist faith could possibly escalate to bigger issues at hand than the illegal killing of elephants. Below is an ivory statue of Jesus Christ made at the expense of the elephants on the left:

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/sep/19/jesus-wife-ancient-script-harvard

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2012/sep/22/atheism-east-germany-godless-place

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/sep/21/anti-us-protests-pakistan-deadly

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/culture-lifestyle/world-religion/120920/innocence-muslims-stay-youtube-judge-rules

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/20/religion-at-heart-of-ille_n_1898688.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

 

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