Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

 


the role of Mary in the Catholic faith

It is surprising in a culture that aims for equality for women that the Virgin Mary cult is not getting the hostility it deserves.  According to Catholicism, Mary was a child who said yes to God to get pregnant.  She entered a marriage where Joseph would have been boss.  Curiously there was no sex in this marriage so it was not a marriage at all.  Jesus did not even make her a priest. She may be Queen of Heaven but you are not told that the faith teaches that all who enter Heaven are kings unto God.  See the Book of Revelation.  One reason for Mary's celibacy is that she had a call from God to have one child and so if you don't want any more children sex is out.  This is a powerful put-off for her followers who are tempted by contraception.

The Roman Catholic Church says that the Blessed Virgin Mary was conceived without sin. The Church because our representative Adam sinned against God we as a result are conceived as sinners.  Mary was an exception and lived a sinless life as a result of being conceived and born holy. She is the Queen of Heaven and she is the person who is the highest of God’s creatures and she reigns over the angels. It says she was the Mother of God when she gave birth to Jesus Christ who was conceived without a man and by the power of the Holy Spirit. Mary was supposedly a lifelong virgin and had no other children. God took her body to heaven so she is there now.

A lot of that comes from chapter 12 of the Book of Revelation where a pregnant woman who is a sign in Heaven with the sun for a dress and a crown of twelve stars has her baby, Jesus the Messiah King, and he is taken away to God's throne to avoid being eaten up by Satan and she goes off to hide in the wilderness.  Satan's tail sweeps down a third of the stars of Heaven indicating how godlike in power he is. 

It is interesting how Christians think holy things deter demons and scare them off when Satan in the form of a dragon was going to eat this baby who is supposedly God's Son or God incarnate?  Satan can take holy communion then so he must be faking his fear of the wafer during Catholic exorcisms!

Anyway Satan after going after the baby is thrown out of Heaven by Michael to the earth and then he looks for the woman again.  He tries to drown her but a miracle saves her so he gives up and goes off to war against the rest of her children. 

The woman is not allowed to raise her child in Heaven.  Her and her other children are dumped on earth.  And so is Satan!  She is treated like an unfit mother and a prisoner.  She does not match Catholicism's version of Mary who had no children but Jesus.   Her boy is not even said to be her firstborn and who fathered the other children?

Worse Mary would be among the saints revelling vindictively about the violent fiery fall of Babylon and her people.

Revelation 19 in New International Version (NIV) says,

1 After this I heard what sounded like the roar of a great multitude in heaven shouting:  “Hallelujah!  Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,

2 for true and just are his judgments.  He has condemned the great prostitute who corrupted the earth by her adulteries.  He has avenged on her the blood of his servants.”

3 And again they shouted: “Hallelujah!  The smoke from her goes up for ever and ever.”

4 The twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God, who was seated on the throne. And they cried:  “Amen, Hallelujah!”

The Church lies that this is symbolism but why would he take write that way?  It is unnecessary unless the author really was advocating spite. This text says that the holy in Heaven rejoice over damnation.  The smoke means her destruction took her to hell to roast forever.

You couldn't expect much better if Mary had a son who is the God who wrote this,

Deuteronomy 32,
 
39 See now that I myself am he! There is no god besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand.

40 I lift my hand to heaven and solemnly swear: As surely as I live forever,
 
41 when I sharpen my flashing sword and my hand grasps it in judgment, I will take vengeance on my adversaries and repay those who hate me.

42 I will make my arrows drunk with blood,while my sword devours flesh: the blood of the slain and the captives, the heads of the enemy leaders.”

43 Rejoice, you nations, with his people, for he will avenge the blood of his servants; he will take vengeance on his enemies and make atonement for his land and people.

Back to Catholic teaching on Mary.  She is a hypersaint.  But was Mary really that holy?

If Mary was a bad woman or nothing special, that shows believers in the supernatural that her deceiving spirit may have appeared at places like Lourdes, Fatima, Garabandal, Necedah and Medjugorje while pretending to be the sinless Queen of Heaven. She would be seen as a demon from Hell appearing to mislead people and to get honoured. Indeed, her seeming apparition in Rwanda has led to much bloodshed.  The Bible says a prophet who gets the future wrong is not from God and Mary predicted things at some apparitions that did not come true and were proven false. Also, if Lucia really believed the entity she witnessed at Fatima was the holy Virgin why did Lucia lie about so much and give out predictions of the future AFTER the event? Garabandal is known for saying a priest would see the great miracle but he died and there is no sign of this miracle. The Roman Church dismisses any apparition that does not fit its theology or what it wants to believe about Mary. There are many apparitions of Mary in which she threatens or boasts or tells lies but the Church won't even check them out.

What if they really are of Mary?  Just because a Mary apparition seems demonic does not mean it is not her.  What if she is a demon?

Many Catholics expect Mary to give orders to God. But others say that Mary is asked to intercede by God and she obeys so God does not obey her but she obeys him. But that is not interceding. Interceding is getting an authority to help who does not want to help. The doctrine that God does not obey Mary is just a cover. It does not describe how Catholics practice devotion to Mary.

The Church says that we honour God when we honour Mary for we honour her for her total love for God since the first moment of her existence. Honouring Mary does not necessarily involve praying to her or asking her for prayers. Mary was honoured when a woman cried out to Jesus one time that the womb that bore him and the breasts that he sucked were blessed but Jesus dismissed this and said it was more important to be blessed for obeying God. The implication was that Mary was not perfect. Catholicism says that it is different to honour Mary now that she is in Heaven but she was on earth then. It says that was why Jesus objected - you pray to saints not when they are on earth but when they are in Heaven. But Mary being on earth or in Heaven would be irrelevant. What is relevant is her entitlement to honour for giving God her son Jesus as his servant. They then claim that the problem was that the woman was just praising the womb and the breasts for physically producing Jesus and had no concern for anything spiritual such as Mary obeying the will of God. So if the woman had said, "Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that you sucked for because of that holy mother we have you, the perfect servant of God who does his will" it would have been different. But this overlooks that the woman was on about spiritual stuff. She was praying for she said "Blessed [meaning by God] is the womb and the breasts". She meant the mother was holy and blessed for giving Jesus.

Mary is not a great role-model. She is a turn-off if you go to her for her inspirational example. As Buddha's disciple Ananda said, you may have to let yourself be a little haughty in order to overcome haughtiness. Real men and real women need to do wrong to a point to stop doing wrong. If you abstain from food because you are dieting, food is all you will think about. Better to eat a little at least. Same and sane principle.