Before I continue, I would like to state up front that I've nothing personal against Catholics in particular. I stand against religion and superstition in general, and in good time, I will level the appropriate criticism towards all denominations of all faiths purporting to express a belief in the omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent Yahweh. For now, I'd like to show you a little something about the incredible absurdity of Catholicism. Well, not me, really, but I'd like to show PZ Myers, a hero of science and reason, showing you a little something about a little white cracker.
This is more or less what it looks like:
Doesn't look like much, eh? I've heard they don't taste like much either. For the benefit of those who aren't familiar with Catholicism beyond the occasional newspaper article on some paedophile priest, let me tell you a little something about this little cracker.
It's the body of Christ. No, really, that's what Catholics believe. Not just symbolic of the body of Christ, it IS the body of Christ, the great Jewish zombie god himself. It might look like a cracker now, but put it in your mouth and POOF! Zombie flesh! Mmm, does a body good... Transubstantiation, they call it. Not bad, eh? What better way to prove your divine power than turn yourself into little white crackers so that all your followers can engage in wanton cannibalism? Oh, I know... Make more zombies!
Anyway, back to crackers. What got me started on this entry was a blog entry from PZ Myers. Here it is in all its glory. Long story short, Catholics worldwide are OUTRAGED that a university student TOOK A CRACKER HOSTAGE. Now, I don't visit Pharyngula as often as I'd like, but I can tell you that Myers isn't one to use profanity lightly. In fact, this is the first time I've ever seen him seriously cuss. Anyway, the emotional intensity of the response aside, he has a very, very valid point: It's just a fucking cracker.
In other news, I just read a very interesting article in Skeptical Inquirer about holy relics. You know, bits of Christ and whatnot, like finger bones, teeth, bits of the cross and similar junk to sell to pious and gullible tourists. Apparently, you could build a ship with all the "genuine" fragments of the cross in circulation. And get this: There are no less than 3 Holy Prepuces out there, all recognized by Catholic Disneyland, that is, the Vatican. Yes, indeed, you read that right, Jesus H Christ, the zombie lord, has at least THREE FORESKINS. Mary Magdalene must've had some fun, eh?
You should check out Ebay sometime. I just entered "holy relic christ" and the search turned this up. That's right! You, too, can own "THE HOLY NAIL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST"! Note that only about halfway into the description do we see, in smaller print: "A replica of the Holy Nail of Our Lord Jesus Christ". The Skeptical Inquirer article mentioned that a grilled cheese sandwich with burnt crust forming the image of the Virgin Mary* sold for over USD10k. I wonder how much this cute little doggie would sell for:
Yea, the Lord moves in mysterious ways...
But to be fair, let's think, between paedophile priests, bogus relics, barbaric cannibal rituals and outright obstruction of science and reason, what's Catholicism got going for it? Well, as I recall, they're keeping Latin going pretty well, which strikes me as a fairly important cultural artefact. And it's left some pretty awesome architecture lying around. And my favourite part, their hymns aren't as painfully, facepalmingly lame as the garbage that certain Methodists I could name manage to regurgitate. But other than that, it shares the same curse as any other religion, meaningless worship of a Bronze Age invisible being who just isn't there and glorification of blind faith without question, a pitiful waste of human cognitive ability which, as it is, just isn't used enough.
*That is, generic female face looking upwards.