Holy Hooks

by: Richard Lloyd Measures

last update: 6 April 2011


Organized religions do some positive things. Examples are helping those in need and providing a means of socialization for members. There may also be some tangible psychological benefits. For example, in 1986, a study in Barbados indicated that bereaved members of the Spiritual Baptist Church may psychologically benefit from an elaborate seven-day mourning ritual.

Organized religions have been touted as providing moral standards for civilized as well as primitive cultures. Whether or not these standards produce tangible results has never been proven. Salt Lake City, Utah is a community whose populace is strongly influenced by the Mormon church (70% of the people who live in Utah are Mormons) However, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City have lower crime rates. {FBI crime statistics for 1994 and 1995}. In spite of the Mormon church's stress on family values in their television ads, the rates of child abuse, divorce, suicide and unwed teenage pregnancy in Utah are above the United States average, unless one uses statistics provided by Mormon apologists.

Some organized religions appear to be implicated in profound emotional problems - such as chemical dependency, self mutilation, and sociopathic behaviour. Such problems typically don't fix themselves -- talking about them is the only recognized way to overcome them. For this reason, the negative aspects of organized religions need to be discussed openly. Holy Hooks is an attempt to do that. For some people, an open discussion in this area causes painful resentment. It is not easy to examine the tender underpinnings of our childhoods.

The type of problems that I set out to examine in Holy Hooks are similar to those which affected the children of entertainer Bing Crosby, a man who was perceived to have above average family-values. However, two of the Crosby children committed suicide. According to the surviving children, the two who killed themselves were the most sensitive and caring members of the family. According to the surviving children, their father physically and emotionally abused them.

Mr. Crosby believed completely in the organized religion (Roman Catholicism) to which he subscribed. In the tradition of his parents, he forced his religion upon his children. One of Bing's sons, Gary Crosby, wrote a book about the family. Many were shocked by the book. They felt that Gary had broken a sacred rule by talking openly about family problems.

In power-bent organized religions, close examination of their inner workings is taboo -- if not anathema. Such religions teach children that those who examine their teachings face grave consequences in the hereafter. Allegedly, this involves separation from family, friends, and God -- and just for good measure, they add the threat of rather lengthy torture in fire.

I believe that we can better understand where we are going if we understand where we have been. Holy Hooks reviews elements of the histories of some of the major organized religions -- histories that the hierarchies thereof have been remiss in propagating. The hierarchies of some organized religions have gone a step beyond omitting embarrassing elements of their histories -- they seem to have adjusted/revised their official histories. Muslims and Christians are quite likely to be affronted by this subject.

Some readers of Holy Hooks have been offended by the material on the sexual aspect of organized religions. Control of sexual behaviour is part of virtually all organized religions. Therefore, examining the sexual aspect of organized religions is a central, albeit tender, issue.

Since they provide a means of socialization, I do not advocate abandoning organized religions. I do, however, advocate fixing problems. Even the most totalitarian patriarchal organizations can be changed for the better if enough members make up their minds to openly practice nonviolent disobedience -- and to openly question inappropriate behaviour by the powers-that-be. Thank you, Mr. Gandhi.

Holy Hooks has been criticized for lack of balance because it does not praise the charity work that organized religions perform. Another criticism is the less than rigorous documentation. These are valid criticisms.

About the Author

I have never subscribed to an organized religion. However, I am not an atheist. I attended Baptist churches between the ages of three and eight. At that point, our family moved to another city. Since there was no Baptist church in the new neighbourhood, I attended a Presbyterian church. The main theological difference between Baptists and Presbyterians seemed to be that Baptist Hell was hotter by several hundred degrees Celsius. There were more immediate benefits. Saturday movie matinees and gin rummy were no longer taboo.

One Sunday when I was thirteen, a member of the church hierarchy took me aside and explained the doctrine of Christian salvation. Allegedly, "God" has three personalities. These are: the Father personality; the Son personality; and the Holy Ghost personality. About 19 centuries ago, God's Son personality apparently alloswed himself to be sacrificed to "pay" for our sins in order to save us from rather lengthy torture in Hell. There seemed to be a few problems with the story, for instance:

Was this really a genuine, bona fide sacrifice?

Who was the payee?

Who is responsible for the torture business?

By definition, sacrifice means forfeiture or permanent loss. However, this so-called sacrifice lasted only about 36 hours. After he who was "sacrificed" the Saviour reportedly went to a big resort in the sky to be with his Father -- so this was hardly a permanent loss.

The payee could have been one of the other two personalities -- but this is a murky area.

Concerning the torture question, the front-man who allegedly manages the torture business was formerly one of God's lieutenants (a.k.a. "archangel") at God's big resort in the sky (Heaven/Paradise/Celestial Kingdom, et cetera). This ex lieutenant has a remarkable number of names. Some examples are: Satan (clearly the most popular) in addition to Lucifer, Devil, Old Nick, Old Scratch, and Prince of Darkness. Satan allegedly has a number of like-minded employees who help to promote his agenda throughout the universe. Satan has a pervasive reputation for not telling the truth -- a trait that earned him a nickname: The Great Deceiver. As the story goes, God and Satan had a falling out that appears to have had something to do with puerile jealousy. Satan and his pals were allegedly booted out of God's resort and sent to manage the eternal torture business in a somewhat less luminous region of the cosmos. However, in the universal scheme of things the buck stops with numero uno, so God is the de facto franchisor of the eternal torture business, and is therefore at least partly responsible for what goes on there.

The Christian salvation story seems to boil down to this: God temporarily inconvenienced one of his three personalities temporarily to pay an unknown party for our transgressions so that we would not have to suffer lengthy torture at the hands of Satan and his pals. In other words, God is the Messiah (after 325 AD at least). The only catch is that we have to have swallow the whole story, or else.

-- If Christian salvation makes perfect sense to you, there is assuredly no reason for you to read beyond this point. --

Consider the issue of fairness. Eternal roasting in fire, alternating with involuntary baths in urine and feces, et cetera is hardly fair pay-back for a relatively brief life of somewhat less than exemplary behaviour. Sure, I knew some guys in Woodrow Wilson Junior High School who were pretty rotten -- but they didn't deserve eternal roasting and bobbing for road apples in a cesspool. An hour or two would be plenty. For Gary, maybe three hours.

As you have probably already guessed, after hearing the salvation story in detail at the age of thirteen, I came away with the feeling that it might be a thick slice of bologna. During the ensuing decades, I have read books, talked to people and tried to untangle this knotty subject. Holy Hooks puts it all together in a small book.


I would like to thank those who consented to be interviewed. For some, talking openly about the family religion was painful.

To the Huntington Library -- thank you for having the conviction and the courage to release the photocopies of the Dead Sea Scrolls into the light of day.

Thanks to Christina Crawford for her revolutionary book 'Mommy Dearest.' This book has been widely credited with bringing down the once-sacrosanct taboo of never publicly discussing family problems.

I would like to thank the hierarchy of the Mormon church, Joseph Smith, Junior, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, and the hierarchy of the Church of Rome for a seemingly endless cornucopia of tragi-comic fodder.

And finally I would like to thank those who read and critiqued Holy Hooks as it was being written. Without their suggestions and encouragement, it probably would have died on the vine.

After my attorney read Holy Hooks, he advised me to never copyright it and to never put my name on it. My wife subsequently had a dream that religious men came to our house in the wee hours of darkness, bearing assault rifles, so I decided to take my attorney's advice.


Holy Hooks was written for those have questions and/or suspicions about one or more organized religions.

Holy Hooks is indelicate. One reviewer described it as a frontal assault with a chain saw upon the tender underpinnings of our childhoods.

Holy Hooks was written by a fallible person, so the faithful can expect some errors that they can point to with delight.

Holy Hooks should probably not be read by devout atheists or those who attend church two or more times per week.

Will Rogers said that those who love bologna should never try to find out how it is made.

End of Preface


"Mother of God" / "Queen of Heaven": in the 1950s (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine Manual for High School Pupils (® RCC), and in the 1990s (® Andelko Mikulec)

As phony as a Three Dollar Bill

Main Text, Holy Hooks


In the animal kingdom, males strive to dominate territory and other males. It's a primal game whose purpose is to control and impregnate females so that only the stronger and more cunning males' genes will survive. The process of carrying forward the best genes continually improves each species so that it may better compete -- thereby assuring its long term survival. Human males have a propensity to play the same game. Cunning, acting in concert with physical attributes, brings wealth, i.e., the means to control. Like dominant stallions, men who control receive that most highly prized carrot -- respect. It appears that man and his primal propensity to control are inseparable.

Carrot Quest

In order to gain wealth, men form businesses that provide products and/or services. Organized religions provide services and they often gain wealth. Some businesses and some organized religions have become quite wealthy. Where it suits their purposes, both types of organization use their power to influence those who make our local, state and federal laws. To accomplish this, smaller organizations hire the part-time services of professional lobbyists. The more powerful organizations, such as insurance companies and oil companies, typically employ a full-time lobbyist. The largest and wealthiest religious organization in California maintains a full-time lobbyist and staff at the state legislature in Sacramento.

Christianity has a long history of influencing laws -- especially those that relate to sex. Roman Emperor Justinian (483 - 565) created what were probably the first laws that attempted to control civilian sexual practices. When asked why the Roman populace needed such measures, Justinian said that they were necessary to maintain public safety because certain sexual practices were known to cause earthquakes. A few centuries ago, the Roman church was successful in having laws enacted that made its priests immune to civil law. In some European countries, a priest could not be prosecuted for committing a crime -- even the crime of murder. At one time, a woman who wore shorts in public on Sunday in North Carolina could be arrested, handcuffed and taken to jail. In the 1950s, a number of states in the Bible Belt. had laws that required businesses to remain closed on Sundays.

Although there are similarities, there are some notable differences between business organizations and religious organizations. Business organizations have historically been less prone to murder their competitors than have religious organizations. Another difference is that businesses pay tax. Organized religions enjoy other privileges that are denied to business. Probably the most remarkable of these is the right to discriminate as they see fit. The major organized religions -- and virtually all major businesses -- were invented by males and are controlled by males. A religion that was founded by a female is virtually certain to be taken over by males after the death of its founder. Examples of this phenomenon are seen in the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, founded in 1927 by Aimee Semple McPherson (1890-1944), and Christian Science, founded in 1879 by Mary Baker Eddy (1821-1910). Females need not apply for any position in church management that leads to the top jobs. Organized religion is the ideal male-dominated business because it is wholly exempted from sex discrimination laws by Article I of the Amendments to the United States Constitution. A male-dominated organized religion is like a men's club that admits non-voting female members who know their place. The Constitutional exemption also applies to race discrimination by organized religions. Such organizations are also exempted from more mundane laws. For example, if a restaurant had a public bowl of water at its entrance for patrons to dip their hands in, the local public health agency would promptly close the restaurant down. However, many churches have a bowl of "Holy Water" near the entrance into which a plethora of well-travelled hands are placed.

If an organized religion wishes to become powerful, it must first control peoples' emotions. In this way, the organization is able to control peoples' labor, money and children. Through control of the children, the children's eventual children are controlled and the organization becomes a perpetual machine which brings a steady flow of money, power, and respect to those who control it. Power-bent organized religions control their subscribers by subtle tactics based on knowledge of human fears, hopes, superstitions and weaknesses. Promoting feelings of guilt and shame are an especially effective means of control. By repeatedly associating guilt and shame with a certainty -- all types of sexual feelings -- a lifetime means of control is possible.

"The sex drive itself gave organized religion an opportunity to amass what was indisputably the greatest power ever lodged in human hands." -- Rabbi Abraham Feinberg

Another guilt tool is wealth. Even in modest amounts, wealth -- a.k.a. "mammon" -- is not good unless the church hierarchy receives a generous slice of the pie. Organized religion is invariably financed from the bottom and controlled from the top.

To some individuals, and to some organizations, power is an addicting drug that requires progressively higher doses. At the peak of his power, John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil empire controlled approximately 90% of the petroleum in the United States. However, Rockefeller's vast power was gained by bribery, violence, threats of violence, and by keeping wages at or near the poverty level -- facts that most of his descendants still deny. John D. Rockefeller was a devout Christian.

In more recent times, Wall Street marvel Ivan Boesky was not content with a few hundred million dollars. He so desperately wanted even more power -- and the respect that it brings -- he violated the law by resorting to insider-trading to make yet more money. As a result, Boesky went to prison.

Michael Milken, Boesky's covert partner in securities crime, also went to prison. Milken paid a 100 million dollar fine. In a March 1992 prison interview, Milken said that the real goal was not the money. Many people found this to be incredulous -- but I believe him. Milken's ultimate goal was the most highly prized carrot -- respect. Before he was caught, Milken donated huge sums of money to charities. This bought him respect.

Power seems to create a need for more power. The only exceptions that comes to mind are George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. They said no, thank you to another term as President of the United States and went home to their farms.

According to Will Durant in The Mansions of Philosophy,

"By the time of the Reformation in the 16th century, the Roman church owned one-third of the arable land in Europe and her coffers were full."

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a.k.a. the Mormon church (1830), has vast holdings of real estate, businesses, cash, and a substantial investment portfolio. Mormons believe that wealth is proof of God's approval. More money equals more divine-approval. Before he invaded Kuwait, Saddam Hussein reportedly had around 10 billion dollars worth of divine-approval in his personal bank accounts.

The Mormon church is a stickler about tithing -- which is defined as a "tenth part." However, Mormons who wish to receive more divine approval can give more than 10%. Mormon bishops are expected to give substantially more than 10%. One Mormon male told me that he hoped to someday be able to give 18% -- curiously, the then maximum allowable federal income tax deduction for donations to organized religions. He explained that it was like an investment. More investment brings more return. Other organized religions promote the same, give more, get more concept. Want to get a big salary increase or reserve a front row seat in Heaven? Just give "God," i.e., the church hierarchy, more of your money. . Since LDS "tithing" is based on gross income instead of spendable income after federal and state income taxes, for Californians, the LDS "tithe" can take roughly 20% of spendable income.

Phineas Taylor Barnum may have underestimated the situation. Perhaps there's more than one sucker born every minute.

A survey in Central California found that Mormons donate the highest average percentage of their incomes to their church. Mormons donated six times the percentage that Roman Catholics donated. No other church came close to the Mormon church hierarchy's percentage take -- estimated to total over four billion dollars per year. Mormons who don't ante-up are denied a 'Temple Recommend' by their local bishop -- a depravation of considerable gravity in Mormon society. . With Catholics donating at only one-sixth the rate that Mormons donate, the percentage donation that God wants is not certain. I propose a foolproof method of determining exactly what percentage of one's income is appropriate to donate: Each Sunday morning, take all your cash on hand and clip it together with a clothes pin. Step outdoors and toss it as high up as possible. Your correct change will infallibly return to Earth. If only the clothes pin returns, try clipping on a VISA® card or MasterCard® and give it another toss.

The appetite of organized religion is seemingly not limited to cash.

"When the missionaries arrived, the Africans had the land and the missionaries had the Bible. They taught us to pray with our eyes closed. When we opened them, they had the land and we had the Bible." - Jomo Kenyata

A similar transfer of property ownership took place in Hawaii after the Christian missionaries arrived. The descendants of these missionaries still own large tracts of land in the Hawaiian Islands.

All that power-bent organized religions do is justified under the guise of providing "salvation" to its subscribers. Salvation seems to be a blanket immunization that miraculously saves believers from the wrath of a surprisingly spiteful and sadistic sky-god who doesn't think twice about passing out cruel and lengthy punishment to those who do not play ball with the holy men. Verily this is scary stuff, kids.

The idea of one's entire family eventually being united forever in a happy hereafter has a wondrous appeal. Promoting the idea that an "unconverted" or "unsaved" family member might be doomed to a much less than wonderful eternity is a good selling point for allowing -- or even coercing -- one's children to come under the influence of the religious organization. Power-bent organized religions promote such concepts -- claiming to be God's One True Church and the sole source of supreme truth.

On "Judgment Day," the billions of people from all of the world's competing religions will presumably gather in "His" stadium. It's probably safe to assume that there won't be any Astroturf or artificial lighting in that venue. It would have to be natural grass and natural sunshine. After everybody finds his or her reserved seat, God sends Ed Sullivan up to the microphone. Ed says something like this: And now, the moment you've all been waiting for, the really big winner, the One True Faith is -- (breathless silence)______________-- the rest of you folks go to Hell. . . Sorry.

Pyramid Power

The structure of power-bent organized religions is a hierarchal, authoritarian pyramid. Each layer in the pyramid follows orders from the layer above -- much like a military organization. At the top of the pyramid is a dominant male. An election takes place after the death of a dominant male. The new dominant male is elected by the males at the second level in the pyramid. The dominant male typically appoints replacements to the electorate. He usually appoints males who can be depended upon not to rock the boat. This system virtually guarantees a very conservative electorate -- resulting in an organization that is less than eager to make even needed changes. And then there's the sticky business of infallibility. If a dominant male supposedly never makes a mistake in matters of faith, making any change is certain to raise unwelcome questions, as well as eyebrows.

The Divine Hotline

To strengthen the aura of authenticity and infallibility, true-believers are told that their leader/dominant male communicates directly with God. If true-believers want God's love instead of God's wrath, they must unquestioningly obey the dominant male. Presumably, such communication takes place by way of an unfathomable Divine Hotline. In most organized religions, the Divine Hotline is definitely not a party-line. There is allegedly one direct line of divine communication on Earth and each of the power-bent organized religions claims to have it.

When the dominant male appears in public, be he ayatollah, pope, guru, prophet, or church president, true-believers have a tendency to become mesmerized since they have been taught to believe that it's almost like God himself walking and talking. After Pope John Paul was shot, Time magazine reported {May 25, 1981, page 12} "It's like shooting God."

Some examples of the Divine Hotline in action:

In the 1840s, polygamy somewhat suddenly became an important tenet of Mormonism. It was purportedly what God wanted the so-inclined Mormon males to do. Coincidentally, this occurred shortly after two-pairs of well-endowed orphaned sisters, aged 17, 19, and 19, 23, were graciously taken in by the founder of Mormonism and his wife.

Late in the 19th century, the Utah Territory wanted to become a state -- but there was a problem. The United States Congress made it abundantly clear that it would be inappropriate for any territory that permitted polygamy to apply for statehood. Fortunately, this was around the same time that The Lord changed his mind about polygamy. The Lord apparently told the maximum-leader and prophet of the Mormons, Wilford Woodruff, about the sudden rule change on the Divine Hotline. Woodruff relayed the message to the faithful. Polygamy technically became illegal therein, and Utah became a state in 1896. However, the Mormon hierarchy -- a.k.a. the "General Authorities" -- ignored the law. Secret polygamy permits were granted to members of the hierarchy until c. 1906 After a well-known Mormon church historian wrote about this, he was excommunicated. More on that later.

Before the civil-rights era, any person with African blood was officially persona non grata in the Mormon church. Brigham Young, the man who brought the Mormons to Utah, was an avowed white racist. He said that any person with "one drop of Negroid blood in his veins" was not acceptable. Church doctrine professed that dark skin was a curse from God to be visited on all of the descendants of Ham -- a character in the Old Testament section of the Bible. During the Civil Rights Era, a number of social activists advocated boycotting athletic teams from Brigham Young University. Naturally, this resulted in a loss of revenue from athletic events. Loss of revenue is, in the Mormon faith, a sure sign that divine approval is on the wane. Another source of pressure was coming from the I. R. S., who was evaluating the church's tax-exempt status. Because of these factors, imminent communication via the Divine Hotline seemed quite likely. Sure enough, in June of 1978, the Divine Hotline phone rang. Mormon church president Spencer Kimball apparently took the call. Dark-skinned folks were now officially OK with God, B.Y.U.'s basketball and football programs were saved from pecuniary perdition, and the I.R.S. discontinued it's rather worrisome investigation into the church's tax-exempt status -- which is probably worth at least a billion dollars per year. Hallelujah! Obviously, God decided not to change any skin tones after he lifted the curse of Ham. It was a good thing too, considering those growing ozone holes that are floating about in the ionosphere. Due to the increasing level of UV rays from the sun, ozone holes seem to be causing a steady rise in the incidence of skin cancer -- especially in light-skinned people. In the future, the curse may be white skin.

Although darker skinned races are now officially acceptable to the Mormon hierarchy, you aren't likely to find Mormon missionaries knocking on doors in Harlem, Compton or Watts. The church is run by and for white Anglo-Saxon males -- and they obviously plan to keep it that way.

It seems to me that if God is to have any credibility, he should not be changing the rules in midstream. He should say what's what, and that's it -- period. Wishy-washiness does not deserve anyone's respect, and it's hardly what most people would rate as a divine trait. While we're on the subject, putting a curse on millions of yet-to-be-born children because of an ancient offence is hardly appropriate behaviour from a so-called "God of love."

The rank of cardinal is pivotal in the Roman church because the College of Cardinals elects popes. The organization used to have a problem with elderly cardinals who had become senile and refused to retire. Some of these guys were ancient. There are few sights more appalling than a drooling cardinal. Something had to be done. The Divine-Hotline phone rang. Henceforth, all members of the organization's upper hierarchy -- with one exception -- would retire at age 75. If you guessed that the exception was for the guy who answers the Divine Hotline phone, congratulations.

Organized Religion versus Democracy

Power-bent organized religions are the antithesis of democracy. The concept of allowing people to choose for themselves is their old and frustrating rival. Organized religion can be depended upon to thwart freedom of speech and democracy whenever doing so serves its interests. Needless to say, this policy breeds totalitarian governments.

Irish author James Joyce was presented with the following choice: continue to write in Ireland and be jailed for blasphemy against the Roman church -- or move to another country. Joyce moved to Paris and, thank God, continued to write. Ireland is one of the most conservative Roman Catholic countries in the world. Irish women can not obtain a divorce. Irish women can not have an abortion even in cases of physical abuse, rape, incest, a severely deformed fetus, or to save the mother's life.

The Russian Orthodox church hierarchy did not support the democratic movement during the early part of the 1917 Revolution and they do not support the modern democratic movement in Russia. Before the assassination of Czar Nicholas II in 1916, the church operated in concert with the government to brutally subjugate the Russian people. This was one source of the hatred that fueled the Russian Revolution. Before 1916, the church was involved in the suppression of competing religions. Judaism was a favorite target of church propagandists. Many Jewish people were murdered or were worked to death in Russian slave labor camps that were operated by Christians. This practice continued under the communists.

A good example of the close relationship between organized religion and power politics was Joseph "Uncle Joe" Stalin (Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili, 1879 - 1953). Although his original chosen vocation was the priesthood, Uncle Joe easily switched his career to politics. During communism, many KGB agents moonlighted as Orthodox priests.

Truly democratic governments have been rare in predominately Roman Catholic Latin America. During the last few centuries, Latin America has not had a shortage of brutal, patriarchal dictators. In the 1910 Mexican Revolution, the people chose to throw out their oppressive dictator. Instead of supporting the oppressed Mexican people, the Roman church hierarchy supported the oppressors. Haiti's pro-democracy President Father Jean Aristide was expelled from his religious order. The sacred heart of democracy, open discussion, is what the Roman church hierarchy fears most. However, when it comes to democracy in the workplace, the Roman church is pro-union -- with one important exception: The church is less than enthusiastic about the unionization of its own laborers who toil at church-owned cemeteries.

Israel is touted as a democracy. The Israeli Constitution provides disproportional representation to otherwise insignificant, radical Jewish sects -- simply because they wrote it. Five of Israel's 25 political parties are religious in nature. As a result, Israel's democracy is often hamstrung by its official organized religion. The Israeli Knesset [parliament] has more than a fair share of members who are radical Jewish fundamentalists. The most radical Jewish fundamentalists are called haredim -- literally "fearful of God." Their fear of God could be described as paralytic. Haredim are so meshuggah [crazy] that the Israeli army doesn't want anything to do with them. Haredim are -- thank God -- exempt from the military draft. This exemption disappoints no one except possibly Israel's enemies. Those who drive their cars through a haredim neighbourhood on the Sabbath should be prepared to have a rock thrown through the glass. This practice began long before the Palestinians started throwing rocks. A friend who was visiting Israel tried to use a public telephone in a haredim neighbourhood on the Sabbath. He was accosted by a stentorian woman who popped out of a nearby house -- like a trapdoor spider. For years, haredim have been trying to have a law passed that would make it illegal for Israeli Christians to raise pigs. Haredim who are fortunate enough to live in Jerusalem enjoy a somewhat more relaxed Sabbath thanks to the Eruv -- an 80 mile-long rope that , according to holy men, professedly turns the city into a single dwelling. This allows the faithful to legally carry things outside their houses on the Sabbath.

However, in comparison to its Arab neighbours, Israel is a beacon of democracy in the region. In Arabic, "Islam" means "to submit." Muslim is an Arabic word which means one who submits to the will of God -- at least according to Islam's current version of it. Since democracy is defined as submitting to the will of the majority of the people, conflict is certain. Saudi Arabia, the bastion of Islam, is rigorously opposed to any form of democracy on or even near its borders.

When Democracy Kills Itself

Islam promotes large families. A Muslim male can currently have up to four wives at a time. However, since a wife can be easily divorced under Islamic Law, younger wives can be added at will. This arrangement can lead to many progeny. King Faisal ibn Abdel Aziz al-Saud c.1906 - 1975), reportedly fathered over one thousand children. Thanks to Faisal's considerable efforts, long-feuding Arab families were united by marriage and blood. This was how the country of Saudi Arabia came to be.

When Muslims become the voting majority within a democracy, a danger arises. When Muslim cleric-politicians take control of a country, the national constitution is virtually certain to be changed from democratic to theocratic -- i.e., a religious dictatorship. The vehicle that propelled them into political office -- democracy -- suddenly becomes blasphemy. Anyone who promotes democracy blasphemes against Allah and the Prophet Muhammad ibn Abdallah. In Islam, blasphemy is a summarily executable offense. Such is the case in Iran. After the Islamic Revolution, the Shah was out and democracy was in - - but not for long. Iran voted to become an Islamic theocracy. Subsequently, Iran's Islamic government handed down death sentences for its own democratically-elected president, Bani-Sadr, and prime minister, Ghotzbadeh. Their crime was advocating democracy. Ghotzbadeh was executed. Bani-Sadr narrowly escaped -- first to France and then to Africa. He is currently being hunted by devout assassins who are eager to win favor with Allah -- and collect a tidy bounty from the Islamic government of Iran.

After Muslim politicians take control of a country, non-Muslims are likely to be given a choice: convert to Islam or die. This is one of the points of contention in the civil war in Sudan which began in the early 1980s. The war started when the government imposed Islamic law. Many of the rebels in the south are people who do not choose to convert to Islam at the point of a gun. In 1993, U.S. intelligence discovered that Sudan's Islamic government is involved in international terrorism and slavery.

In Iran, after the Islamic Revolution, about 40,000 people were legally executed by the Islamic government. For females, violating the traditional Muslim dress code could be unhealthy -- even though the Qur'an prescribes no dress code. The Qur'an says only that women should dress modestly. [Note: the Qur'an is also known as the Koran.]

According to an article in the Los Angeles Times, shortly after the Islamic Revolution, an 18 year old Iranian woman was wearing a western-style bathing suit while she was using her family's private backyard swimming pool in Teheran. Even though the backyard was surrounded by a high wall, a Muslim cleric-trainee who lived in a multi-story apartment across the street, was able to see her from his apartment. Upon seeing her, the cleric-trainee experienced a presumably-unholy erection. He reported the incident to his local mullah [Muslim holy man]. The woman was reportedly arrested, taken to prison, condemned, raped and executed. Rape is not an option. According to Muslim law, it is strictly illegal to execute a virgin. No problem!! Any female who is to be executed is always thoroughly devirginized by at least two faithful Muslim males to be absolutely sure they don't offend God/Allah by executing a virgin. All in the name of Allah, the merciful, the compassionate. Let rapists give thanks for the Holy Qur'an.

During the Islamic Revolution, many Iranian men and women who had attended western universities before the Revolution were arrested and executed for speaking out against the epidemic of human rights violations that were taking place. Apparently, Allah isn't generally in favor of human rights and other western ideas. Even sunglasses seem to be of concern to Allah. Wearing sunglasses in Iran will often result in arrest.

Iran's Islamic Revolution of 1979 was supposed to wipe out the widespread government corruption that existed under Shah M. R. Pahlavi (1919 -1980). However, by 1990, there was reportedly more government corruption in Iran than there ever was under the Shah -- and the problem is growing worse. The Islamic government of Iran funds and directs international terrorism. The problems of corruption and terrorism are never discussed in the state-controlled Iranian media. However, they are reported on in news programs originating in other countries. Since such programs can be received in Iran with a TV satellite dish, satellite dishes are now illegal in Iran. The new Iranian Satellite Police currently prowl neighbourhoods looking for violators. However, in 1997, Iran's newly-elected liberal president began to push for needed changes.

Sin, Guilt, Ritual and Myth

Participation in rituals can take people's minds away from reality and temporarily bring them a feeling of well being. This is especially the case for those who are suffering from the pain of guilt and shame. Rituals seem to be habit forming to people who were exposed to guilt-based religious inculcation during their childhoods. Those who are authorized to perform such rituals receive respect from those who are not authorized to perform rituals.

I believe there is an intrinsic problem with ritual-intensive religions such as Buddhism, Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy and Mormonism. True-believers search for the answer to self-realization within the rituals instead of within themselves. However, Zen Buddhism rejects all rituals -- including Buddhist rituals.

In some religions, to secure God's kindness, or "Grace," one sins, does penance and/or makes a sacrifice -- and one is free to sin again. In the Russian Orthodox church, holy men have concluded that sin is necessary to enjoy the blessings of divine grace. The bottom-line is that sin is pleasing to God. By this rationale, Uncle Joe Stalin must have brought God much happiness while he was torturing and murdering the 22 million.

Guilt and sin are the engine and fuel of power-bent organized religions. If one supposedly sins, he or she feels compelled to go to church to facilitate receiving forgiveness. Sin is elaborated into a mind boggling labyrinth. There are seemingly more ways to sin than the number of flavors available in any ice cream emporium.

To enhance the image of genuineness, each power-bent organized religion claims to be God's one and only factory-authorized dealer on Earth. Such religions typically lay claim to an unbroken "laying of hands" line of holy men going back to the supposed founder of their faith. In Christian religions, this line purportedly leads back to Jesus (the) Christ and the original 12 disciples -- presumably minus their treasonous treasurer, Judas Iscariot.

Promoting the idea that holy men are God's official representatives is helpful in suppressing free thought and open discussion among the laity. Challenging holy men is equated with challenging God. Who would dare? Those who advocate open discussion are compared with Satan, who allegedly challenged God.

A Polish astronomer, Copernicus (Mikolaj Kopernik, 1473 - 1543) wrote the first scientific book which proposed that Earth revolved around the Sun. Galileo (1564 - 1642) read Copernicus' book and supported the concept -- as did fellow astronomer Johannes Kepler (1571-1630). During this era, the organization that likes to refer to itself as "God's Holy Church"-- professed that Earth was stationary at the center of the universe. The Sun allegedly revolved around Earth. The church made Copernicus an offer he could not refuse: publicly deny that Earth revolves around the Sun or be turned over to the church's Holy Inquisition branch for torture and roasting at the stake. Copernicus recanted. When he was 68 years old -- and safely past the church's maximum legal age for torture -- Galileo was threatened with excommunication. Galileo recanted. From this episode came the words revolutionaries, revolution and revolt. It was not until late in the 19th century that the church quietly removed Copernicus' book from its banned books list. In October of 1992, the pope acknowledged that Earth revolves around the Sun.

The element of mysticism is a useful means of receiving respect because people are intimidated by things they can not fully understand. Thus, holy men invent myths -- the more incredible the better.

"I can believe anything, provided it is incredible." -- Oscar Wilde

Phineas Taylor Barnum observed that the attendance at his shows bore a close relationship to the incredibility of the claims that he made. Apparently, there's no shortage of people who like to be wowed more than they dislike being fooled -- an artifice that consistently sells tabloids at the grocery checkout.

Augustine (354 - 430), one of the main engineers of what was then called the Church of Rome said:

"If you understand it, it is not God."

Apparently, jabberwocky is of divine origin.

Holy men tell the faithful: You (lay members of the church) can not understand these beautiful "divine mysteries" since God has ordained that you are not capable of doing so. You should gracefully accept these wondrous things as articles of faith. In other words, God supposedly puts an ignoramus-gene factor into the brains of the laity. But all is not lost, thank God. The hierarchy will happily do the thinking for the laity. As the Greyhound bus people say -- just leave the driving to us.

A good example of a "divine mystery" is the triple-personality deity -- a.k.a. the "Holy Trinity." The concept of a multi-personality deity was a common element of pagan religions for many centuries before Plato wrote about it c.400 BC. The Arab religion that preceded Islam had a triple deity. Many Christians assume that mankind learned of the Holy Trinity from the lips of the one they call Jesus (the) Christ. However, a trinity is mentioned nowhere in the Bible. The concept of the Christian Trinity appeared after the First Century. Much debate ensued. In the Spring of 325, a conference was held at Nicaea, Bithynia in northwest Asia Minor. Thanks in part to pressure from Roman Emperor Constantine and pressure from Constantine's mom, on the 20th of May 325, a majority of delegates voted for the new triple-personality doctrine.

Constantine was not someone to trifle with. Like 'The Juice', he murdered his second wife. However, the trinity issue was far from settled in 325. More debate followed. Those who questioned the new doctrine occasionally had to take sudden vacations for reasons of personal safety. However, by the time of the First Council of Constantinople (381) the trinity promoters seemed to be in control.

In essence, after 325, Christians were expected to believe that God caused a woman to become pregnant so that she would give birth to God. Thus, the father is allegedly the son, i.e., God is the Savior/Messiah. . . And Oedipus Rex thought he had problems. A god who impregnates his mother? Would you like a pickle with that bologna sandwich?

In the Qur'an [a.k.a. Koran], at 5:15 - 5:18, Mohammed ibn Abdallah said:

Unbelievers in God are those who declare: God is the Messiah, the son of Mary.

The Qur'an is not the only book to cast doubt on the Christian Trinity. According to the New Testament section of the Bible: The Son of man reportedly said:

"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father." {Matthew 24:36}

If the Father knows something that the Son doesn't know, could they be the same? The only possible explanation for Matthew 24:36 is that some anti-Trinity person must have put it there when no one was looking. If this is not true, the Trinity is porcine shampoo.

Since myths contain fiction, they are vulnerable to examination. Thus, one myth is often used to support another myth. The triple-personality deity serves this purpose. It works in concert with the concept of the perfect sacrifice. This will be discussed later in the section titled Ritual-Cannibalism.


Most dictionaries use the term fictitious story to define myth. However, the Catholic Encyclopedia defines myth as follows:

"It can be said that myth, in its functional use, explains the origin of events or actions, and thus myths are the jumping-off point for things or events that humans cannot immediately grasp from their experimental knowledge."

The "Act of Faith" Celebration

In the previous section, the subject of the Holy Inquisition was broached. The Holy Inquisition was basically a branch of the Roman church whose purpose was to encourage compliance with the church's teaching and to promote belief in the organization's myths. Accepted forms of evidence against the accused included rumor and hearsay. After being condemned by the Holy Inquisition branch, victims who did not die during torture were punished publicly in the Auto-Da-Fé ("Act of Faith") celebration. The first one took place in 1481. The last took place in 1830. In the Americas, the last Act of Faith celebration took place in Mexico in 1815. The Act of Faith celebration was one of the Roman church's most solemn and most pompous. It was probably the church's most memorable celebration as well. Typically, Act of Faith celebrations were held between Whit Sunday and Advent. Sometimes an Act of Faith would be celebrated on All Saints's Day. The celebration consisted of a public display of the condemned, the preaching of a sermon, followed by the murder of the victim. Burning alive at the stake was a popular form of accomplishing the desired result. According to its own records, 340,000 people were murdered in public by "God's Holy Church" between the 15th and 19th centuries. (Fr. Peter DeRosa, ''Vicars of Christ'')

The Art of Inculcation

The word inculcate comes from the Latin word inculcatus, which means 'to trample' (from calx, calc-, heel) Inculcation is a unique type of instruction that is designed to slowly trample down an individual's reasoning ability and self-worth. As self-worth wanes, faith-in-self is replaced by faith in the organization doing the inculcating. Religious organizations that inculcate prefer to describe their activities with euphemisms like religious instruction or religious training..

The word religion comes from the Latin word ligare, which means 'to bind'. An English derivative is the word ligature. When inculcation is combined with religion, an individual can be emotionally trampled down and bound. The goal is control. Like the Japanese art of binding the growth of a tree -- bonsai -- binding the reasoning ability of a human mind is best begun at an early age.

Some factors that facilitate inculcation are:

Children need the attention of adults.

A child equates almost any form of attention with love - - and only rarely looks back objectively for the remainder of his or her life.

Young children have a tendency to believe what they are told by adults and by older children.

When a charismatic person passionately believes something -- whether it be true or not -- he or she becomes a convincing salesman.

That which children perceive as reality can be molded by repeated suggestion from key adult leaders and peer group pressure.

The targets of inculcation are gently anesthetized by the attention they receive. The perception of love is a potent anesthetic -- so few of the children who are being inculcated are likely to realize what is taking place.

Some obstacles to inculcation are:

Beyond the age of about five years, children become increasingly able to separate reality from fiction.

The ideas that children are exposed to during inculcation must be protected from open discussion outside the classroom.

The mind of a child can be programmed for a lifetime by adults who operate under the warm, fuzzy aura of love and repeat a blend of truths and myths often enough to make a lasting impression.

There are no deliberately deceptive persons at work here. Those doing the inculcation -- the inculcators -- were similarly warm-fuzzied and molded by the same techniques during their most impressionable years. The inculcators are sincere, they are innocent victims -- and they help to make more innocent victims. We are blinded by what we perceive as love.

Most people need and enjoy open discussion. TV and radio talk shows enjoy high ratings. Talking about problems is how people overcome problems. However, it's also how people separate fact from fiction. Since delusive concepts are vulnerable in the light of day, open discussion is inculcation's eternal enemy. To satisfy the human need to talk things over, carefully-controlled discussion may be incorporated into religious inculcation. To further preclude the possibility of truly open discussion, children may be cautioned (at the risk of being a traitor to 'God's Holy Family') not to discuss everything that goes on in religion class with outsiders. One may presume that dire consequences beyond the grave awaits such traitors.

When an inculcated person reaches a specified age, usually between the ages of eight to sixteen, he or she will be called upon to formally join the organization. The initiation ceremony is sometimes called confirmation. The initiate confirms the church hierarchy's teaching and thereby submits to the authority of the hierarchy and its dominant male. The person who is being confirmed/initiated may be required to kiss the ring of a supposedly superior holy man -- the equivalent of kissing the royal ring to show obedience to the king. The name of the game is seemingly submission and domination. The payoff is respect. The respect must be automatic and devoid of consideration as to whether the superior person deserves respect or not.

Ring-kissing is a traditional form of showing respect. Holy men take ring kissing rather seriously. One of the alleged crimes of Joan of Arc (1412?-1431, French name Jeanne d'Arc) -- the 17 year old woman who saved France from English invaders -- was that she did not prevent her admirers from spontaneously kissing a simple ring she wore, inscribed: "Mary and Jesus." This ring was given to her by Joan's mother and father. For this and other so-called crimes against God's Holy Church -- Joan was judged guilty by a panel of priests, raped, and burned alive in an "Act of Faith" celebration.

When inculcated children grow up and have families, they unconsciously assist in preparing their own children for inculcation. Consequently, the inculcators will only need to reinforce and build upon the basics that the children were already exposed to at home.

Inculcation is designed to produce individuals who are dependent on the organization doing the inculcating. The organization claims to have everything of value. The child is expected to show up, show respect, keep quiet, and listen. Inculcation is also designed to produce individuals who bring cash to the organization. In Mormon inculcation classes, giving a minimum of 10% to the church is advanced as an unquestionable holy duty. In the Roman church's inculcation classes, the idea of bringing cash donations is introduced around the age of six.

To keep the ball rolling in a power-bent organized religion, no marriage is performed unless both parties indicate their intention to put their children through the organization's inculcation system. In the event that both parents die, the obligation of exposing the children to the inculcation system falls upon the godparents. All of the bases are covered. As a result, children are likely to be coerced to attend religious inculcation classes as well as religious services. However, when a child is repeatedly coerced or forced into situations where he or she is not given choices, problems can result. One of the most insidious problems is lowered self-esteem.

"If I did not go to Mass, I could not eat that day. The family sat around the table and I was alone in the corner. If I missed confession, I could not eat with the family. Nobody spoke to me. Nobody was allowed to comfort me. All this was done in the name of God. It was the silence that hurt; it is the silence that I remember." - Paul, age 28.

Controlling the reasoning ability and the emotions of a young mind requires less time than one might presume. The Roman church hierarchy has stated that, if they have access to a child through the age of six, that child will be their's for life. The Mormon church, seems to feel that their inculcation program will have succeeded by the time a child reaches the age of eight.

Mixed Messages

In the game of log rolling, one's opponent can be controlled by keeping him, or her, off balance with a mix of real and fake reverses. In baseball, the pitcher may send the batter a contradictory message in the form of an occasional "brush off pitch" to gain the upper hand by keeping the batter off balance. A parent may use contradictory messages to control his or her children. The following ploy is an example: The parent tells their teenage child: "You should socialize more with your friends." After the teenager goes out with friends and returns home, the parent sobs "I was so lonely while you were gone." If this ruse to induce shame and guilt eventually succeeds, the teenager may stop socializing with peers -- thereby arresting normal social development. 20 years down the road, there could be yet another Norman Bates. {Alfred Hitchcock's 'Psycho'}

A common ploy used in inculcation is to keep people off balance with contradictory messages. For example, students are told that "God is love" -- and yet his favor can supposedly be gained by suffering. God is love -- yet he allegedly abets eternal torture in fire. Sex is bad -- but post pubescent sex feels good. Love your neighbours as yourself -- but be prepared to destroy them if they subscribe to different religious beliefs.

Mixed messages make mixed-up people. Mixed-up people are vulnerable to being controlled. In the game of submission and domination, those who can be thrown off balance by mixed messages will be controlled by those who are adept at pitching mixed messages. The collision of contradictory messages can also cause mental disorders. This subject is covered in the section titled Compulsive Behaviors.

The Sugar/Stick Shtik

One of the tools of inculcation is sugar/stick. Exuberant group praise of an individual is alternated with harsh group criticism of the individual. It is difficult to overstate the effectiveness of this tool. Sugar/stick is so powerful that, in the hands of skilled practitioners, it can be used to control thought -- i.e., create mind-control. Sugar/stick can be used to change a person's personality.


Persons who have had their self-respect lessened by inculcation need someone to look down upon so that they can synthetically feel better about themselves. Skin color difference carries considerable weight during the process of selecting a suitable scapegoat. Religions of darker skinned people tend to use lighter skinned people for their scapegoat. Religions of lighter skinned people tend to use darker skinned people for their scapegoat. The Black Muslim church [a.k.a. the "Nation of Islam"] teaches its followers to love Allah and yet to hate one of Allah's creations -- white folks. The Nation of Islam's racist attitude is somewhat understandable. For hundreds of years in the United States, white Christian parents taught their children to love "GEEE-sus" and to hate "niggers." In the 16th century, after long deliberation and supplication for divine guidance, the Roman church hierarchy concluded that African people were a commodity which could be sold for profit -- like beasts of burden. Portuguese traders were given the necessary approval from Rome to buy slaves in Africa and sell them in the New World. The profits from such activities were astronomical. The church was not unreceptive to sharing in the profits from the New World. The first boatload of stolen gold to be brought back from the New World to the Old World was used to guild the ceiling of a church in Italy. In 1895, Pope Leo XIII rescinded the church's approval of black slavery.

The Roman church never used dark skinned people for a scapegoat. Perhaps beasts of burden weren't good enough. It's probably a moot point because the hierarchy already had a very human scapegoat: the "Christ Killers"--or Jews. Christianity's hatred of Jews is a tradition that can be traced back to the 4th century.

"I hate Jews. No pardon is possible for the odious murderers of the Lord." - Saint John Chrysostom (c.347-407)

Many people believe that the target of the Crusades was Islam. This is only partly true. When the Christian army finally captured Jerusalem, one of their first Christian deeds was to round up every Jew they could find. The Jews were locked inside the synagogue and it was burned.

The Roman church's hatred of Jews is difficult to understand. According to post-325 Christian belief, Jesus of Nazareth was one of God's several personalities. Therefore Jesus was God. However, Jesus of Nazareth was irrefutably Jewish because his mother was Jewish. Yet for 15 centuries the church taught the faithful to hate Jews and love God.


The Orthodox church also used the "Christ Killers" as their scapegoat. This was not a coincidence. The Roman church in the west, and the Orthodox church in the east, in Constantinople, were once branches of the same church. For many centuries they had much in common. Ideas and inventions flowed back and forth. The Holy Trinity and the crucifix are examples. The Trinity was a collaboration. The crucifix was invented by the Orthodox church around the 9th century. Although the Roman church initially rejected the crucifix on theological grounds, when it was discovered that crucifixes were selling like hotcakes, Rome decided to go with the flow. Despite their long collaboration, they went separate ways in 1054. The problem was a dispute that began about two centuries earlier. The dispute was punctuated with numerous mutual-excommunications. A smaller split occurred in 451 when the Coptic church broke away from the Orthodox and Roman churches. The point of contention was the official definition of the Trinity. The East-West split in Christianity in 1054 is known as the Great Schism. 1054 was a year of great splits. It was the year of the great supernova in the Crab Nebula. A huge star collapsed on itself, exploded, and split into countless bits that are still expanding. This supernova was so bright that it could be seen plainly during the day.

Abusive Sects

There is considerable controversy over what criteria defines an abusive religious sect//cult. In my opinion, abusive cults:

The word 'cult' usually conjures up the image of a small, rabid, abusive, religious organization. However, it seems that cults come in a wide variety of sizes. It can, however, be a serious faux pas to refer to a large religious organization as a cult -- even though the organization has many of the characteristics of one. Not all cults are abusive or dangerous. Many are innocuous. In the United States, there is an FDR cult, an MLK cult, an Abe Lincoln cult, an Elvis cult, and a JFK cult -- none of which are dangerous or abusive.

A serious stumbling block on the path to becoming a responsible adult is lack of self-worth in childhood. Self-worth is a delicate asset. Anything that erodes a child's faith in self can be a serious problem. I believe that abusive cults are especially dangerous to children because they are designed to erode self-worth.

When you meet the friendliest people you have ever known, who introduce you to the most loving group of people you've ever encountered, and you find the leader to be the most inspired, caring, compassionate and understanding person you've ever met, and then you learn that the cause of the group is something you never dared hope could be accomplished, and all of this sounds too good to be true, it probably is too good to be true! Don't give up your education, your hopes and ambitions, to follow a rainbow." --Jeanne Mills

{Jeanne Mills was a former member of an abusive cult -- The People's Temple of Rev. Jim Jones. Jeanne Mills left the People's Temple after 913 members died as the result of drinking cyanide laced Koolaid, or from being shot in the back, in Jonestown, Guyana. Jeanne Mills was assassinated by a People's Temple cult member one year After the Koolaid party.}

Far Better Than God

Reverend Sun Myung Moon holds the self-proclaimed titles of "Messiah" and "Master." Moon is the Master of the Unification Church - - a.k.a. the Moonies. Since Moon claims to be God's man on Earth, his followers are not allowed to question anything Moon says. What follows are a collection of translated quotes from Sun Myung Moon:

"God is now throwing Christianity away and is now establishing a new religion, and this new religion is the Unification Church... With the fullness of time, God has sent his messenger to resolve the fundamental questions of life and the universe. His name is Sun Myung Moon."--Sun Myung Moon in Divine Principle.

"So from this time of peak every people or every organization that goes against the Unification Church will gradually come down or drastically come down and die. Many people will die those who do against our movement." (Master Speaks 2/14/74)

"The whole world is in my hand, and I will conquer and subjugate the world." (Master Speaks 5/17/73)

"Then in one sense, Father, Heavenly Father will say "Reverend Moon is far better than me, the Heavenly Father". In a short period of time, He will synthesize, He will crush the enemy and let them surrender. Our Master senses this kind of feeling of the Heavenly Father. Also, he is proud of himself and appreciates that Jesus Christ's unfinished job of 6000 years has been completed by him in his lifetime." (Master Speaks 7/31/74)

"So telling a lie becomes a sin if you tell it to take advantage of a person, but if you tell a lie to do a good thing for him that is not a sin. Even God tells lies very often; you can see this throughout history." (Master Speaks 3/16/72)

The Discipling Movement

The roots of the modern discipling movement, or shepherding movement churches can be traced back over 1400 years. In the 5th century, the Roman church started using the spiritual director system in monasteries and convents. Each new disciple was discipled by a spiritual director/discipler. The disciple was encouraged to confess their most secret thoughts to the discipler and submit themselves completely to the discipler's decisions as to what is good and what is evil. For some as yet unclear reason, such a system tends to create mind-control. The spiritual director system produced so many cases of abuse of disciples by their disciplers that the Roman church abandoned the use of discipling.

Watchman Nee was a charismatic, authoritarian Christian preacher who was persecuted by the Chinese Communists during the 1950s. Nee founded the movement known as "Little Flock." Nee said: "The church is a place not only for fellowship of brothers and sisters, but also for the manifestation of authority." {Eternity, January 1976, page 9.} Nee taught that each person must be responsible to a person of higher status -- which Nee called a "covering." This "covering" was an authoritarian discipler. Since Nee discipled his followers, who in turn discipled those below them, who in turn discipled those below them, a power pyramid of followers was created with Nee at the top of the power pyramid. Nee controlled everything -- like a godfather in the Chinese mafia or Triads. Nee taught that each disciple must confess all sins to his or her discipler -- who in turn passes the information up the ladder to his or her discipler. Nee knew virtually everything he needed to maintain control. This system was very much like that used in the Nazi Party -- wherein everyone became an informant. This is an effective control tool. Nee also taught that each disciple must imitate his or her discipler. In other words, monkey see, monkey do. The lowest disciples would be trying to ape their disciplers, who in turn would be trying to ape their disciplers, who in turn would be trying to ape their disciplers, on up the pyramid. The result was a pyramid of people attempting to mimic the person at the top of the pyramid.

In 1963, Robert Coleman's book The Master Plan of Evangelism was published. Coleman argues that Christ was a stern discipler who controlled virtually every aspect of his disciples' lives. Coleman references scriptural evidence to support his claim. However, Coleman's scriptural evidence is somewhat less than convincing -- although it is rather imaginative.

Coleman asserts that modern churches are intrinsically cold and impersonal because they lack intense one-on-one student-teacher relationships. This is probably a valid criticism. However, in Coleman's model, the discipler is not just a teacher. The discipler dictates virtually every aspect of disciples' lives. The net effect of the discipling system/discipling movement is to put a human being between each person and God -- the very thing that the alleged founder of Christianity spoke against in his lectures.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Chuck Lucas, a young, charismatic preacher, formulated the plan for a new discipling movement. The plan was based on the principles laid down by Nee and Coleman. Some elements were similar to techniques used by the Church of Scientology™, multi-level marketing scams, Jehovah's Witnesses, the National Socialist German Workers' Party, the Moonies, and Est. Elements of Lucas' plan were:

Social control maintained by:

Briefly, this is how it all works: Prospective members are bowled over by the intense aura of love and enthusiasm presented by the group. However, prospective members are not aware that the sect conducts acting classes. I have seen such people in action and some of them are extremely good at what they do. New members are kept so busy that they have essentially no time for old friends and family. Old friends are slowly displaced by the new instant-friends in the sect. Eventually, all of one's 'friends' belong to the sect. From this point on, leaving the sect becomes extremely difficult. . . The hook is set.

In the beginning, Lucas' discipling movement was affiliated with the mainline Churches of Christ. In 1967, Chuck Lucas joined the 14th Street Church of Christ in Gainesville, Florida. Lucas succeeding in making discipling part of church policy. Thanks to Lucas and his plan, the church experienced a phenomenal growth rate that attracted widespread attention. When the 14th Street Church of Christ built a new building, the name was changed to Crossroads Church of Christ. The discipling movement came to be known as the Crossroads Movement and Crossroadsism. Lucas sent teams to spread discipling movement techniques to other mainline Church of Christ congregations. It was during this phase that Lucas recruited Thomas 'Kip' McKean from the University of Florida at Gainesville. Lucas baptised McKean in 1972. Lucas was McKean's discipler.

McKean is a gifted, charismatic orator and the son of a U. S. Navy admiral. McKean attempted to take over congregations in other cities. McKean's agenda was somewhat less than well received. In a letter from one congregation, the following appears:

"... Brother McKean has brought unbiblical practices, peculiar language, and subtle, deceitful doctrines to Charleston from the Crossroads Church at Gainesville, Florida."

In 1979, at the age of 25, McKean was invited to become the minister of the mainline Church of Christ congregation in Lexington, Massachusetts. The congregation was in decline. Kip, his wife Elena, and his followers joined the Lexington congregation. 'Christianity' would never be the same. After McKean became minister, roughly half of the old congregation walked out. However, due to McKean's charisma, infectious zeal, oratory skill, Elena, Lucas' plan, and intense recruitment by McKean's dedicated followers, the congregation grew phenomenally. The congregation outgrew its quarters and started meeting in nearby Boston. The name of the congregation was changed to Boston Church of Christ [BCC]. Thanks to McKean, the network of discipling churches that Lucas started went international. Examples are the Tokyo Church of Christ, London Church of Christ, Toronto Church of Christ, et cetera.

In 1985, Chuck Lucas was dismissed from the Crossroads Church of Christ after a number of young men in the discipling movement admitted that they had been having sex with him. Lucas moved to Thomasville, Georgia and began preaching at another church. With Lucas out of the way, Kip McKean took firm control of the discipling movement. He began a purge to entrench his control. The key people in the movement that Lucas had discipled were steadily replaced with people McKean had discipled. However, Chuck Lucas mysteriously remained on the BCC payroll for years -- even though he was no longer connected with the discipling movement.

Perhaps the most curious things about McKean's takeover was baptism nullification. Sins which had previously been absolutely washed away by baptism, were now outstanding. This meant those who had been assured they were Heaven-bound were instead headed on a one-way trip to the eternal fires of Hell. Thus, those who had been baptized in the Lucas-era had to be rebaptized in the McKean-era. If you guessed that McKean was an exception, congratulations. The Crossroads Movement was now the Boston Movement.

Mainline Churches of Christ are autonomous. Each church is controlled by a council of elders. At Crossroads, Lucas was booted out by a vote of the church elders. In the Boston Movement, there is a council of elders -- but they do not vote independently. The only vote that counts is McKean's. There is no system of checks and balances. Due to disagreement with McKean's spin on interpretation of scriptures, the de facto non-voting status of elders in his church, and McKean's dependence on using established mind-control techniques, the mainline Churches of Christ began disassociating themselves from the discipling movement in 1987. On 19 June 1988, based on a decision by its elders, the Crossroads Church of Christ publicly distanced itself from the Boston Movement.

Just as Lucas recruited McKean, new members in the Boston Movement are typically recruited from college campuses. This is not a coincidence. The movement's shtik is designed to take advantage of the fact that college students are often recently separated from their families. This makes them vulnerable to the group's love bombing and instant friends ploys. Due to numerous complaints of harassment of students and use of deceptive practices, ICoC recruiters have been banned from a number of college campuses in the U.S. and in the United Kingdom. Newspapers and magazines picked up on this and articles began appearing which detailed the deceptions and high pressure tactics the Boston Movement uses. Subsequently, ABC's 20/20 produced a segment which used videotape evidence to prove that Al Baird, a member of the Boston Movement elite, was less than truthful about the practices of the organization. McKean counterattacked by labeling media reports as "persecution" and "spiritual pornography." New and old memberships in the BCC seemed to be declining.

McKean moved from Boston to Los Angeles, where he was virtually unknown by the local media. On 6 January 1992, Kip McKean informed all lead evangelists in the Boston Movement that he is now serving as the evangelist of the Los Angeles Church of Christ. In other words, the world headquarters for the movement is L.A. On 22 July 1993, Kip McKean informed his followers that the Boston Movement has a new name -- International Churches of Christ (ICoC). During the World Leadership Conference In Los Angeles (11-15 August 1993) -- essentially following in the footsteps of David Koresh and Rev. Jim Jones -- McKean declared himself to be "God's man" leading "God's movement."

Kip obviously owes much to his one time discipler, baptizer, and the founder of the present day discipling movement -- Chuck Lucas. In 1988, Kip's followers were being told about Lucas and Crossroads. However, by 1991, Kip's followers were being told that the discipling movement began in Boston. I asked a current member of the ICoC about Chuck Lucas. He had no idea who Chuck Lucas was -- although he was sure that the ICoC had told him the complete truth about the history of the discipling movement.

The Movement of Money

One of the reasons for the rapid growth of the discipling movement has been its ability to move impressive sums of money from the pockets of members to McKean's pocket. ICoC members are expected to donate a minimum of 10% of their weekly gross income in addition to "special contributions" for the allegedly poor/needy, plus other spurious contributions. For example, a member whose income is $500 per week must contribute $50 minimum per week to the discipling movement. There are at least two "special contributions" per year. The "special contribution" is based on an announced multiplier. If "God's man" decides that the multiplier is 20, and the weekly contribution is $50, then the special contribution would be $1000 for that week, plus the normal contribution of $50--for a total take of $1050. With this system, it is possible for the movement to take a high percentage of disciples' incomes. One college student, Donna Buckmeyer, said that she donated $4,000 to the movement -- money she needed to complete her education. {"I Got Caught Up In a Cult," Seventeen Magazine, Sept. 1995, page 178}

In the United States, it is difficult to find out what percentage of church contributions for the poor and needy are going to the poor and needy. However, in the United Kingdom, the Charities Commission keeps a watchful eye on organizations who ostensibly collect money for the poor and needy. According to a Charities Commission investigation, ICoC/London Church of Christ collections for the poor and needy delivered between 1% and 3% of the monies collected to the poor and needy. The rest went for 'administrative costs'.

Personality Change and Mind-Control

The discipling movement has been widely accused of practicing cultic mind-control. Kip McKean was so sure that his critics were wrong, he hired researcher and author, Flavil Yeakley, Jr. to scientifically investigate the matter. Yeakley did his job. He conducted standard personality tests on members of the Boston Movement. Yeakley discovered that approximately 95% of the members had changed personalities. When Yeakley informed Kip McKean of the statistical results, McKean reacted favorably -- assuming that changed personality was a good thing.

Yeakley's book, The Discipling Dilemma, details his findings about the discipling movement. Yeakley points out that personality change is widely recognized as a harbinger of serious psychological troubles. There is substantial evidence that persons who are mind-controlled exhibit changed personalities. A high rate of changed personality has been measured in members of: the Unification Church, Church of Scientology™, Jehovah's Witnesses, Children of God, and Aum Shin Rikyo (supreme truth)--the church that nerve-gassed the Tokyo subway in March of 1995, killing 12 and injuring thousands.

The existence of changed personality can also be detected by observation. According to Richard G. (Rick) Bauer, an ex-member of the discipling movement elite, many male members of the discipling movement ape (mimmick) the personality of Kip McKean. Bauer said that this somewhat humorous phenomenon only became clear to him after he left the movement. Bauer left the movement after he discovered that McKean had revised the history of the movement and diverted $3.1 million in 'special contribution' funds into a numbered bank account in a foreign country.

According to "God's man" and "prophet" Kip McKean, Mother Teresa and Joan of Arc are going to spend eternity burning in the fires of Hell.

One of the more unique things about the 'discipling movement' is that, from it's beginning, members who marry are required to disclose what took place in the honeymoon bed. A description of each coital position used, number of male orgasms, and number of female orgasms must be disclosed to "God's Leaders".


Probably the best -- or worst -- example of mind-control took place in Germany from 1933 to 1945. People were inculcated with a clever blend of truths and untruths. Many people began to believe in and act upon the untruths. Those who lived through it have described Naziism as a patriarchal, organized religion. The chief architect and patriarch of this madness, Adolph Hitler, might seem to have been an inventive, diabolical genius. However, he invented little. Hitler copied things that worked.

Herman Rauschning was a former Nazi official who fled Germany in 1935. In 1939 he finished his book '''The Revolution of Nihilism''', a report and analysis of Hitler and the Nazi movement. Rauschning said:

"Hitler has a deep respect for the Catholic church and the Jesuit order, not because of their Christian doctrine, but because of the 'machinery' they have elaborated and controlled, their hierarchal system, their extremely clever tactics, their knowledge of human nature and their wise use of human weaknesses in ruling over believers."

Hitler freely plagiarized from the 'machinery' that the church developed and refined over the centuries. Nazi tactics for gaining influence and repressing introspection resembled those used by the church. The leader of Nazism, Adolph Hitler, and the leader of Catholicism, Eugenio Pacelli, alias Pope Pius XII, were both said to be infallible. It is easy to believe that one can never do wrong if he or she is only following orders from an infallible leader. No thinking required -- or desired. The German people were told to always trust the National Socialist German Workers' Party's judgment instead of their own judgment. In A Full Catechism of the Catholic Religion, by Fr. Joseph De Harbe, S.J., on page 77 the following appears --

"In matters of faith never trust your own judgment, but always humbly submit to the decisions of the Holy Church."

The two organizations had another parallel. The Schutzstaffel, a.k.a. the S.S. -- literally 'protection squad'-- and the Jesuits. Both organizations were mysterious, charismatic and elitist. The S.S. and the Jesuits took similar oaths. They swore that they would follow every order from their (infallible) leader without exception -- and so they did. Understandably, the Jesuits and the S.S. often received the jobs that conscionable men could not stomach.

The Third Reich copied anything that suited its needs. Nazi ritualism borrowed from Catholic ritualism. Since authoritarian organizations fear open discussion, another parallel was book burning. Papal and Nazi book burning were hardly rare events. At one time, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and Boccacio's masterpiece Decameron were on the papal must burn list. Sometimes, whole libraries had to go -- such as the vast library torched by Theodosius I at Alexandria, Egypt in the 4th century. When the Nazis wanted to identify Jews for persecution, they borrowed an idea that had once been used by God's Holy Church. Jews were required to wear a yellow Star of David in public.

During his childhood in Austria, Hitler was baptized and inculcated by the Roman Catholic church. Hitler's father taught catechism classes. Little Adolph served as a choir boy. In those days, catechism included hateful anti-Semitic propaganda.

During the course of his religious inculcation, little Adolph was somehow able to grasp the intricacies of how the organization's 'machinery' works its magic on the mind. Another person in the Third Reich who understood these mind-control techniques was Reinhard Heydrich. Like Hitler, Heydrich passionately hated Jews -- most probably for religious reasons. Heydrich was the principal architect of the "Final Solution." He was the German governor of occupied Czechoslovakia, an important producer of German armaments. Heydrich was a master at controlling people. He was instrumental in bringing Eastern Europe under Nazi influence and increasing the production of materiel for the war effort. The Allies were so concerned about Heydrich that they had him assassinated by a two-man Czech assassination team. In retribution, Hitler ordered the murder of all of the adult males in Lidice, a village in northwest Czechoslovakia. Only one man escaped. The women and children were sent to concentration camps and Lidice was burned to the ground. (June 9-10, 1942).

God's Holy Church operated a convent near the death factory at Auschwitz, Poland where millions were gassed and cremated. The fetid odor of burning flesh was unmistakable according to people who lived many miles away from the death factory. It seems unlikely that those in the convent would have concluded that the neighbours were burning up millions of chickens during a time of food shortage. Trains would arrive, unload several thousand people, and depart virtually empty. The convent and the death factory are still there -- and so are ten acres of human skeletons, ten feet deep. Word of what was taking place in Auschwitz most certainly got to Rome. Members of the Roman church hierarchy were allowed to travel freely during the Second World War. It was said that the church had better intelligence than the Allies or the Axis. The Nazis largely respected church property and church authorities. Hitler, however, gave no indulgence to lay Catholics or Catholic priests who criticized the Nazis. If caught, they were typically guillotined or shot. The Nazis also dealt harshly with one of the Roman church's religious adversaries -- the Jehovah's Witnesses.

In the area of dealing with critics, the parallel between Catholicism and Naziism diverges. Where the Nazis often used the relatively humane guillotine to silence its critics -- the church's Holy Office/Inquisition branch had a three century tradition of terminally toasting them in public.

Hatred -- the Universal Glue

Before he could set out to conquer the world, Hitler needed to unite the divergent political factions in Germany. The universal glue for uniting people from divergent factions is common hatred. Hate is stronger than love.

When he was a young aspiring artist in Vienna, an organization of prominent artists -- some of whom happened to be Jewish -- rejected his artwork. Hitler was enraged. He blamed the Jews instead of his marginal artistic talent. Hitler said he would get even. Ironically, it was this rejection that turned Hitler's career from painting to politics.

The Church of Rome renamed itself the Roman Catholic Church in the 1400s. The name change was appropriate because, by then, the organization had become designed to unite people under an ingenious belief system. Hatred was one of the tools the organization used to bring this about. The church hated Jews. Hitler hated Jews. Before the war started, Hitler informed the church that he was merely picking up where the church left off. Hitler's campaign against Jews not only helped to unite Germany, it assisted him in weakening the resolve of Jew-hating predominately Roman Catholic countries such as Poland, France, Rumania, Lithuania, Austria, and Hungary.

Cultivating hatred against Jews in Germany was facilitated by factors that had nothing to do with the Roman church's pervasive anti-Semitic teachings. During WWI, a number of German financial institutions, who were controlled by Jewish families, withdrew financial support from Germany after the U.S. entered the war. Hitler repeatedly used this fact in his public condemnations of Jews. However, Hitler conveniently forgot that there were plenty of non-Jewish German financiers who also withdrew financial support after the U.S. declared war on Germany. Beyond this point, it was like pouring money into a rat-hole, and virtually all financiers knew it.

In France, Catholic bishops collaborated with the Nazis to round up Jews for deportation to the death factories. The pope knew about this and he said nothing. He knew that Catholics were helping to operate the Nazi death factories. Italian Jews were rounded up for deportation within sight of the pope's residence in Rome. The pope had no comment.

Hitler, who respected little -- including Germany itself -- largely respected the church's property. It seems as though there was, as some -- including an ex-Jesuit -- have alleged, a written agreement between Adolph Hitler and Eugenio Pacelli before the Second World War began.

There were many Christian civilians in Nazi-occupied countries who cooperated in the murder of their Jewish neighbours. On average, the Nazis were able to kill about 60% of the Jews in the regions that were under their control. In certain areas, the percentage of Jews that were murdered was substantially greater. Such was the case in Lithuania and Poland. In Vilnius, Lithuania, 94% of the Jews were killed. This rate of murder would have been impossible without enthusiastic local support. There were 250,000 Jews in Lithuania before the war. The Jewish population was so devastated by genocide that there was no recovery after the war. In 1991, there were less than 7,000 Jews in Lithuania and many of them were planning to leave. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, newly independent Lithuania decided not to prosecute eight Lithuanian civilians who publicly shot Jews during the war.

In other countries, however, the Nazis enjoyed less success. When the Nazi invaders demanded that Danish Jews identify themselves by wearing a yellow Star of David, nearly every Dane wore one. In Denmark, the dominant religion is not Roman Catholicism. Early on, Denmark sent most of its Jewish citizens to neutral Sweden. After the invasion, many Danes continued to help Jews escape.

In Russia, Byelorussia and Ukraine, hatred still lingered from the Russian Orthodox church's anti-Semitic propaganda. There were many citizens in those areas eagerly helped the Nazi invaders kill Jewish citizens or round them up for deportation to Auschwitz. Over 100,000 Jewish corpses were discovered in a single grave at Babiyar, Ukraine. Hatred of Jews is currently widespread in western Ukraine. Many Ukrainian Jews are trying to immigrate.

After Pearl Harbor was bombed in 1941, the United States government began a hate campaign against the Japanese race that was intended to glue America together during the war. Some of the cartoon propaganda that was used to cultivate Japanese race hatred in the U.S. appears to have borrowed unabashedly from Nazi anti-Semitic cartoon propaganda.

One might assume that church-inspired hatred against Jews stopped after the details of the 'Final Solution' were revealed to the world. However, during the course of gathering material for this book, I interviewed three Jewish men who attended elementary schools during the 1950s in widely separated regions of the United States. Each of them reported that he had regularly experienced taunts of "Christ Killer" from Catholic school children. Two of the three said that they had been physically assaulted on more than one occasion by groups of Catholic children. One of them later married into a Catholic family. In 1988, he took his grandmother-in-law to a Mass at Saint Timothy's Catholic Church in Morro Bay, California. The priest preached a stentorian sermon against the Jewish race.

Even though the Roman church no longer openly advocates anti-Semitism, the fallout from the wrongs of the past can be expected to last at least another generation.


The Nazis used a simple technique that is used in religious inculcation. That is: Repeat almost anything often enough and people will eventually believe it.

Hitler picked a number of fellow Roman Catholics for important jobs in the Third Reich. He picked Joseph P. Goebbels to head the new Ministry of Propaganda. When Hitler proposed his propaganda program, Goebbels was astounded. Goebbels said that he had no idea of how the highly educated German people could be led to believe such things. Hitler said it would be simple -- repeat lies. Hitler was not guessing. As a child, he had seen it work during his religious training.

Whenever the opportunity presented itself at gatherings of the Nazi elite, Goebbels would gleefully tell the story as testimony to der Führer's brilliantly simple genius -- much to the delight of those present. Certainly, the propaganda techniques were ingenious -- but many of them were simply copied from organized religion.

In actual practice it takes more than simple lies to make effective political propaganda. As in religious propaganda, the fabrications in political propaganda must be designed to play on people's innermost fears and emotional needs. Repeated suggestion from key adult leaders and peer-group pressure are essential adjuncts. Fabrications are- blended with some truths -- like the sugar coating on a pill that is otherwise too bitter to swallow. Throughout history, political propaganda and religious propaganda have been combined in order to subjugate people. The Nazis were very good at this game.

Needless to say, Nazi propaganda was highly successful in Germany. Many Catholic priests joined the Nazi party. This encouraged their parishioners to join. Nazi propaganda enjoyed success in other countries as well. Race superiority was already a widespread belief In the United States. Nazi propaganda merely capitalized on the idea. Henry Ford, an outspoken anti-Semite, and Charles Lindbergh were taken in. After a half century, the effects of Nazi propaganda still linger. A number of currently-active racist organizations in the U.S. and Germany have affiliated themselves with the Nazi movement.

The concept of genetic superiority and inferiority -- eugenics -- became popular in England during the early part of the 20th century. Adolph Hitler was strongly influenced by the eugenics movement in England. However, Hitler distorted the concept for his own purposes by altering the concept of gene superiority to include race superiority -- a major facet of Nazi propaganda.

Doing the Right Thing

Maximum genocide requires maximum secrecy. There were two organizations who acted in concert to keep the sheer scale of the Holocaust secret from the public. When genocide was well underway, Cardinal Tisserant urged Pope Pius XII to state publicly that Catholics can not participate in mass murder -- even under the orders of their legally-elected political leader. Pius XII said nothing. However, to his credit, Pius XII was instrumental in hiding some Italian Jews from the Gestapo.

After the war in Europe ended in 1945, many high-ranking Nazi war criminals mysteriously vanished. The most infamous were Adolph Eichmann, the SS Commandant of Auschwitz, and Dr. Joseph Mengele -- a.k.a. "Doctor Death." A substantial part of the more than 50 tons of gold that the SS confiscated from the millions of Jews they gassed also mysteriously vanished. Near the end of the war, the trail of some of the escaping war criminals and the trail of gold led south toward Italy -- and then disappeared. Decades later, it would be discovered that some of the most infamous war criminals lived lives of luxury in South America. Other war criminals escaped to Syria. Some war criminals escaped to the U.S.--thanks to covert U.S. government involvement. Klaus "Sonny" Barbie, a.k.a. the "Butcher of Lyon," was one of them. Barbie was a CIA employee during the beginning of the Cold War. Eventually Barbie became too hot for the CIA to handle -- so the CIA and another organization helped him escape to La Paz, Bolivia. Other war criminals hid in French monasteries. A recent find occurred in 1991 -- but after a half-century, prosecution of any war criminal is problematic.

In February 1992, the Argentine government released once-secret documents that explained one means of escape. Eichmann, Mengele and other fleeing Nazi war criminals had simply traveled to Argentina on passports that were issued by the Vatican. This conduit for escaping war criminals was known in intelligence circles as the "Rat Line." Those involved preferred to call it the "Monastery Route." Prominent individuals in this enterprise were Bishop Hudal, Father Drugonovich -- a Croat living in Rome, Ivo Omrcamin and the pope. Drugonovich specialized in forged documents and hiding money -- presumably in the church's Institute for Religious Works (bank) in Rome. Omrcamin was responsible for the physical operation of the line. In an interview with Memory Pictures, Inc. in 1986, Omrcamin explained that Pius XII approved of the operation because he, like the Nazis, was anticommunist. According to Omrcamin, the last pope to use the "Monastery Route" was Paul VI.

In light of Pope Pius XII's silence during the Holocaust -- and the Vatican's complicity in helping Nazi war criminals escape justice -- a public confession and apology from God's Holy Church would seem to be appropriate. However, the organization has a long history of burying its head in the sand. The hierarchy seems to fear that confessing publicly to failings and misdeeds might cast doubt on their credibility. Less credibility could mean less r-e-s-p-e-c-t.

In practice, however, admitting to a mistake often increases credibility and respect. For example, a major turning point in the presidency of John F. Kennedy was his acceptance of blame for the Bay Of Pigs Invasion debacle. Subsequently, Kennedy's public approval rating increased. Truth does set people free. Conversely, denial of truth is inevitably toxic -- as the Nixon White House so painfully discovered.

The Roman church has yet to own up to its shameful anti-Semitic past. Perhaps the church hierarchy should consider what would have happened if the one they call Jesus had not been executed at the age of 33, and had died instead from something less dramatic -- such as Alzheimer's disease -- at the age of 100.

Perhaps the sore point with Rome was that the clever Jewish holy men tricked the Roman government into killing the troublemaker for them. It's not nice to fool the godfather.

In December 1993, almost a half century after the last Jew was gassed at Auschwitz, the Vatican finally established basic diplomatic relations with Israel. This could lead to full diplomatic recognition. However, there could be an ulterior motive. Karol Wojtyla reportedly wants to visit Jerusalem near the end of his reign as pope.

The Father and the Mother of Psychoanalysis

In addition to Adolph Hitler, another Austrian who understood esoteric mind-control techniques was Dr. Sigmund Freud. Hitler considered Freud to be an especially dangerous Jew. Dr. Freud, who had been living in England since 1938, was near the top of der Führer's must gas list. Curiously, Freud remained on the must gas list for several years after his death in 1939.

Freud had another powerful enemy. In 1908, Freud's book Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality was published. In it, Freud expressed the opinion that children were sexual beings. He also reached some conclusions about the sexual victimization of children that affronted many holy men. Freud's biographer, Ernest Jones, said that Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality brought down more odium than any of Freud's other writings. Much of the odium was vented from pulpits.

Freud's 1927 magazine article The Future of an Illusion -- now a 56 page book published by W. W. Norton Co., originally published in Internationaler Psychoanalytischer Verlag, provided insight into the deep rooted human emotions that are manipulated during religious instruction/inculcation. Freud concluded that some organized religions are designed as a father substitute so that they will appeal to the child in all of us. The Roman church counterattacked by publishing a book of her own, The Illusion of the Future, that tried to discredit Freud's theories.

"The lady doth protest too much, me thinks." -- William Shakespeare, '''Hamlet'''

Freud was alarmed by the attentions of the church. He began writing another book about organized religion, Moses and Monotheism -- which earned him the wrath of Catholicism and Judaism! Influential rabbis from around the world were outraged. Many influential rabbis publicly disowned Freud as a Jew.

Near the end of Part-I, Freud said --

"Psychoanalytic research is in any case the subject of suspicious attention from Catholicism."

He went on to say that the church's political power was such that it could have all work in psychoanalysis outlawed in Austria. Again quoting:

"Such violent means of suppression are by no means alien to the Catholic church; she feels it rather an intrusion into her privileges when other people resort to the same means."

Freud decided not publish any part of this book until after he moved to England.

The church had been using psychoanalysis to refine its 'machinery' for more than a millennium before Freud was born. Freud may have picked up ideas for some of his theories on psychoanalysis by analyzing the church's 'machinery'. Even though he had many flaws, Freud is widely credited as being the Father Of Psychoanalysis. Perhaps the Roman church deserves credit for being the Mother of Psychoanalysis.


Before the Spanish conquest, the Inca Empire in South America controlled its people masterfully. At the heart of the system was the Inca religion. A major element of this religion was the act of regularly confessing one's sins to a priest who allegedly had the power to facilitate divine forgiveness of sin. The seemingly harmless act of confession is a purposeful mind-control tool since baring one's soul through confession is an act of submission to authority.

The Church of Scientology (tm) uses confession as a tool of control. In 1959, the church's inventor, Lafayette Ronald Hubbard introduced "security checking," wherein members are interrogated -- having to answer long, prepared lists of questions about their sins. A record is kept. Such records have proved to be an effective means of silencing dissidents. Wealthy celebrities are a favorite target of Scientology™. Once a celebrity is in and has confessed his or her darkest secrets, there is no way out short of having their career ruined by juicy disclosures to the tabloids. The International Churches of Christ (a.k.a. the Boston Movement) also keeps detailed records of confessions to its "disciplers." The confessional record -- or "sin list"--is used to weaken the resolve of members in an approximately eight against one "Breaking Session." {Richard Bauer}

After the Spanish conquest and pillage of South America, the Inca religion was out and Roman Catholicism was in. The Incas tended to accept the new religion because there were similarities between the old religion and the new religion. The similarities were: a divine queen, confession, forgiveness of sins, and sacrifice. Another probable factor was public disfavor with the ever-increasing rate of human sacrifice. The Roman church's pretend sacrifice was more appealing than seeing one of your family members sliced open in public. Another element was undoubtedly firearms.

Control of Females

Warning -- This section contains material that some people find offensive and/or obscene. If you haven't already done so, please read the Preface before continuing with this section.

As I mentioned earlier, males seem to satisfy a primal need by controlling females. Controlling females can also be a means of gaining yet more power and respect.

A necessary ingredient for rapid growth of a power-bent organized religion is a generous supply of children. This result can be achieved if the dominant male plays his cards appropriately.

The dominant male tells females how "God" wants them to use their reproductive ability. This prescription results in the rapid production of babies with little or no regard for the realities of genetics or economics -- and without regard for our planet. Are we to believe that God wants to see Earth trashed by human overpopulation? Quality of human life does not appear to be as important as quantity of human life.

Madagascar's unique and delicate flora and fauna are rapidly being destroyed by human over population. When Pope John Paul II visited Madagascar, he acknowledged that an environmental disaster is taking place. His recommendation was for the locals to stop having sex. Condoms? Use condoms, burn in Hell. The Holy Father's doomsday proscription against condoms extends to a person who would reduce the risk of giving HIV to their spouse -- even when the deadly virus was acquired by way of medical malpractice.

In 1991, the Roman church hierarchy in the United States proclaimed that merely discussing the use of condoms in high schools increases the spread of the AIDS epidemic. The hierarchy appears to be suffering from acute condom phobia -- a recently discovered brain disorder that corrupts brain logic operations which contain the word "condom." The hierarchy currently approves the rhythm-method of contraception. The basic premise of the rhythm-method is that if no semen enters a woman during specific days of her menstrual cycle, conception will not occur. This supposedly leaves about a dozen days per menstrual cycle for copulation without conception -- curiously, the same desired result of having used real birth control. Although it sounds good in theory, and it does work more often than not, there is a physiological glitch in the rhythm-method. The bottom-line is simply that a normal woman can occasionally become pregnant on any day of her menstrual cycle. The rhythm-method appears to be a method of rhythmically increasing church membership.

From time to time, the hierarchy comes up with a new-and-improved version of the rhythm-method. A recent book on the subject is The Art of Natural Family Planning. The success rate of the new method described is said to be 'at the 99% level'. In other words, the rhythm-method limits pregnancies to 1 per 100 sexual intercourses -- or roughly one per year. The rhythm-method appears to be contraception-deception.

When a child with a severe genetic defect is brought into the world by parents who have been faithfully practicing the rhythm-method in order to avoid just such a catastrophe, holy men tell the distressed parents that what appears to be bad is really good. In church literature, the terms his agony and her agony are used in a delightfully positive context. The Roman church teaches that suffering is one of the paths to salvation. A constant reminder of this concept is the center of focus in their churches -- the statue of the bleeding, suffering human figure -- a subtle introduction to sadomasochism. Children are casually exposed to this endangerment from the earliest age.

Historian Rudolph Bell discovered that about half of the Roman church's female saints punished their "sinful" bodies compulsively. Many met an early grave. Deliberate malnutrition, skin-abrading garments and self-flagellation were especially popular. Saint Catherine of Siena reportedly beat herself daily. She beat herself until she was standing in her own blood. Saint Catherine died in her early 30s -- clearly a victim of protracted suicide. The church teaches that suicide is a mortal sin.

Especially in Mexico and in Italy, devout women often ambulate to church on bleeding and battered knees. Suffering and blood supposedly pleases their God and brings "His" blessings.

Many organized religions teach that God designed sex for procreation -- and that little or no pleasure is supposed to accompany the sex act. However, since every normal female has sensitive areas that are pleasantly stimulated during sex, feelings of guilt are quite likely. In some Christian denominations, females who are about to be married are given special instruction. They are told that if they begin to experience pleasure during sex on their wedding night, they should put it out of their mind by thinking about something holy. Such attitudes are partly rooted in Judaism. The Torah advises "when having intercourse, one should think of matters of the Torah or any holy subject." The Torah also advises that, during sex, a woman should not be allowed on top of the man. Apparently, it is feared that if given the opportunity, a women would move in ways that would cause the penis to rub on pleasurably on her Gräfenberg-spot, and that might take her mind off of holy subjects.

There was a time when wedding night sex was taboo for Roman Catholics. To so contaminate the day of the Holy Sacrament of Marriage with sex was professed to be an abomination in the eyes of God. Having sex on designated holy days was also said to offend God. A few centuries ago, suspected violators were dealt with by the church's Holy Inquisition branch. Curiously, the overwhelming majority of the Holy Inquisition's victims were female. Burning at the stake was a commonly used form of execution. There was, however, a less painful option. If a condemned female confessed to being a witch, the church mercifully rewarded her with strangulation before the fire was lit.

Christian females are commonly taught that a Christian wife is required to provide sex, as a service on demand to satisfy her husband. In other words, having sex with her husband is mandatory. The principal differences between such a wife and a prostitute appears to be in the term of the contract, fringe benefits, probable variety of services available and the long-term amount of remuneration. For the first two centuries of the existence of the United States of America, complaints of spousal rape were very rarely prosecuted. It was not until the mid-1980s, that U.S. courts began recognizing spousal rape as a criminal act. Prior to 1986, spousal rape was perfectly legal in California.

Females who believe the predominant Christian teaching about sex may never experience the pleasantness of an orgasm. The likelihood of an orgasm is further reduced if the husband is of the same faith since he is not inclined to do anything that might cause his wife to sin by experiencing pleasure. Such a wife seems to be little more than a breeding animal and a servant.

One survey found that roughly half of adult females in the U.S. have never been able to enjoy the potential gift of orgasm that their designer gave them. 70% of the women who had orgasms required a form of clitoral stimulation in addition to penile stimulation. Mormonism has a hotly-denied taboo against oral-clitoral stimulation by the husband and the reciprocal activity that can be performed by the wife. Some Mormon bishops refer to these taboo activities as "mouthing." Mormons are also forbidden to practice masturbation. Mormons who violate these taboos can be denied a Temple Recommend by their bishop. Without a Temple Recommend, Mormons are barred from temple ceremonies. According to Deborah Laake, the author of Secret Ceremonies, some Mormon bishops are apparently so embarrassed by the subject of oral-clitoral stimulation, that they do not broach the issue before issuing a Temple Recommend.

For many years in California, the Christian lobby was successful in keeping oral-clitoral stimulation outlawed -- even between a man and his wife. Recently these laws were overturned. However, it should be noted that California had terrible earthquakes in 1989, 1992 and 1994.

Mormon men have a novel method of subjugating their wives. Mormons believe that God, who was once a man, the Heavenly Mother, and God's other wives live in the Celestial Kingdom on a planet which revolves around the star Kolob in the Constellation of Cancer, once every 1000 earth years. In the "Celestial Kingdom," Mormon males become gods in training. Each Mormon male's job assignment is to inseminate his many wives. IF his earthly wife served him well and IF she showed him proper respect during their earthly marriage, she may be allowed to join god, i.e., her husband, on the Celestial planet, and be inseminated along with the other females. If she did not meet the Mormon standard for wives on Earth, she is barred from the Celestial Kingdom for eternity.

The fathers of the Mormon church have an imaginative way of pressuring Mormon women into having large families: Mormons are taught that all other religions are inferior to theirs. To a Mormon, one of the most inferior religions is Roman Catholicism. The feeling is mutual. Catholics consider Mormons to be non-Christian -- a rating that is only slightly less abominable than Satanism. Part of the problem may be that both organizations claim to be God's one true church. Mormons are taught that a large number of unborn souls [a.k.a. spirit babies] are waiting to be born into bodies on Earth. A soul can be born into any family, Mormon or otherwise. Unborn souls allegedly have no choice in the matter. They get in line and wait for the next vacant womb. There are no reserved seats in the earthly theatre. Thus, if a Mormon family chooses to stop having children, those souls who they did not allow to be born into their family could be born into a non-Mormon family. If a soul is, instead, born into a Catholic family, this is cause for guilt and shame. In the mind of a devout Mormon, perhaps the only thing that could be more dreadful than being born into a Catholic family is being born into an African-American Catholic family. As a result of such teaching, married Mormon women are under subtle pressure to have more children than they can handle emotionally. Married Mormon women have a rate of suicide that is roughly double the national average for non-Mormon married women.

Mormonism's revisionism is discussed in more detail in the section titled Latter Day Adjusters.


Surgical Subjugation

The clitoris appears to be a source of apprehension for many "God-fearing" people. This seems curious since God-fearing people give God full credit for designing and creating humans. Beginning in the 1870s, a nearly painless medical treatment for this source of apprehension became widely available in the United States. The treatment involved a simple office procedure that was made possible by the new wonder drug of the 1870s -- the long sought after, first effective local-anesthetic: cocaine -- a substance that is ideal for this application since it numbs and it restricts the flow of blood to minimize bleeding during surgery.

The surgical procedure: Cocaine is used to numb the vulva. The glans clitoridis is grasped and pulled outward to expose the base of the clitoris. The object is to excise as much nerve tissue as is practicable along with the clitoris. The resulting void is sutured with a few stitches. The medical term for this procedure is clitoridectomy.

In the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century, clitoridectomy was regularly performed on children in the United States. Clitoridectomy was seldom performed on patients beyond the age of ten. The main purpose of the procedure was to stop little girls from masturbating -- a very serious -- although unbiblical taboo in all versions of Christianity. Also, unusually large clitorii were routinely excised by 19th century doctors to supposedly prevent lesbianism -- another Christian taboo. Probably because male circumcision was socially acceptable, clitoridectomy was euphemistically called "female circumcision." Since there is another type of female circumcision (If it's causing a problem, an oversized prepuce, or hood, can be trimmed back to improve clitoral sensitivity.), ambiguity helped to cloud the terrible truth that cutting off a woman's clitoris is the equivalent of cutting off a man's glans-penis.

In the United States, medically-performed clitoridectomy declined in the early part of the twentieth century. However, it is still perfectly legal for doctors in the United States to perform clitoridectomies on children. In 1993 the price was roughly $3000.

Non-medical clitoridectomy is currently practiced in some fundamentalist Christian religions in the United States. The evidence for this comes from hospital emergency room personnel who see the botched jobs that become infected. The victims are typically around three years of age. One doctor reported that he has seen cases of this type of infection which were fatal.

Clitoridectomy is not a recent invention. Historical records indicate that clitoridectomy was practiced in Egypt during the time of the Pharaohs, over 4,000 years ago. Clitoridectomy is currently practiced in over 30 countries. Most of these countries have a high percentage of Muslims. Clitoridectomy is also practiced among Gypsies, Coptic Christians, and various African tribes. In Africa it is widely believed that the clitoris is an evil part of the body that must be removed for the sake of the soul. Changing such beliefs will be a terribly slow process. In Kenya, clitoridectomy was outlawed in 1990 -- but the practice persists, especially among the Masai tribe. In Nigeria, shops that perform clitoridectomies operate like ordinary small businesses -- along side bakeries, shoe stores and the like. In Somalia, roughly 90% of the population is Muslim and roughly 90% of Somali females have been declitorized. In Egypt, about 80% of the women have been declitorized. According to Newsweek (Dec. 20, 1993), in Africa, about 2 million forcible clitoridectomies are performed yearly -- a rate of over 5000 per day. According to Al Wafd, an Egyptian weekly magazine, several thousand Egyptian girls are declitorized daily. Current estimates are that between 85 and 114 million females have been declitorized worldwide. Most of the victims are Muslim. All in the name of Allah the merciful, the compassionate.

Social pressure against the clitoris is severe in conservative Islamic countries. A female who possesses all of the equipment that Allah gave her, is viewed as not desirable for marriage by eligible males. Female children who have not been declitorized are viewed as unclean and untouchable by other children. In Saudi Arabia, having a daughter "cleaned up" means having her clitoris removed.

So-called Muslim female 'circumcision' often involves more than removal of the clitoris. Sometimes, the labia minora (another erectile organ) are also removed. Sometimes, skin is scraped away from the sides of the labia majora and the raw tissue is sutured together. The procedure is called 'infibulation'. It prevents anything much larger than a pencil from entering the vagina. Sometimes the remaining opening will be too small for satisfactory urination and menstruation -- a situation that can result in infection and death. Just before an infibulated female marries, she will be deinfibulated with a knife or razor. Muslim males have the right to have any of their wives re-infibulated at any time.

The typical age for performing Islamic female circumcision varies from country to country. The range is roughly late infancy to menarche. Islamic male circumcision usually takes place around puberty. Muslim circumcision is typically performed without local anesthesia since Muslim surgeons often utilize an irritant to aid in the extraction of the clitoris. The sensitive glans clitoridis is rubbed with stinging nettles to stimulate the clitoris. When the clitoris is fully erect, it is grasped, pulled and excised. . (note: This extraction method can not work if the clitoris is numbed with local anesthesia.)

To Westerners, all of this may sound cruel and grisly. However, Muslim parents have their female children surgically altered because they want them to be socially acceptable. In some countries this is a matter of survival. For example, in Somalia, the illiteracy rate among females is 86%. For most Somali females, the only job open to them is marriage and child bearing.

In France, clitoridectomy is illegal. It is classified as a form of child abuse so severe that it warrants up to a life sentence in jail. In January 1993, a Gambian mother living in France since 1983 became the first person sent to jail under the law. In 1987, she paid a midwife to perform clitoridectomies on her two oldest daughters, then aged one and two. The distraught mother received a sentence of one year in jail and four years probation.

Two Take Away One = None

Women have two major sites for producing orgasms -- the clitoris and the Gräfenberg-spot, located in the front wall of the vagina. These two sites are close together. They share the same nerve bundle to the brain's pleasure center in the hypothalamus. When the clitoris is excised, the body reacts to the insult by over building the region with fibrous tissue that attenuates the transmission of signals along the remaining nerves from the Gräfenberg-spot. Thus, clitoridectomy virtually ends a woman's ability to have an orgasm.

Although various reasons -- excuses -- are given for performing clitoridectomies, the underlying reason seems to be male fear of female sexuality. A major source of the fear of female sexuality comes from organized religions -- principally Islam. However, Muhammad ibn Abdallah -- the Messenger of Allah -- says nothing in the Qur'an about genital surgery for girls. Clitoridectomy was added after the fact by self-professed Muslim holy men who apparently believe that Allah made some stupid mistakes when he designed woman.

Unholy Erections and Unwonderful Blood

Another tool that males use to subjugate females is the idea that women are generically unclean because of menstrual blood. Here's what some highly respected holy men from God's Holy Church had to say:

"There is nothing so unclean as a woman in her period." - Saint Jerome

"Menstruating women will cause fruit not to ripen and plants to die." - Saint Isadore

"Defective children will result if conceived during menstruation. Women should not be enlightened or educated in any way. They should be segregated because they are the cause of unholy erections in holy men." - Saint Augustine

Menstrual blood is not significantly different from the blood that flows from a cut on a man's hand or foot. However, Christian holy men teach that when a man bleeds spontaneously from the hands and/or feet, it's a wonderful sign from God. This phenomenon is known as stigmata. However, when a woman bleeds spontaneously during menstruation, it is somehow not wonderful.

Frescoes in the catacombs of Rome seem to depict women and men performing rituals together in the early Christian church. However, women were gradually forced out of the ritual business. Supposed female uncleanliness was the most likely reason. The name of the game is control. Instilling a feeling of inferiority in one's opponent is good gamesmanship. Since feelings of guilt and feelings of inferiority are closely related, the ploy of menstrual uncleanliness enhanced female guilt and shame. In this way, the campaign to bar women from performing rituals produced a mind-control perquisite for the men. The men threw the women a perfect inside curve ball, just below the belt. The bottom-line was more control and more respect for holy men. The final blow for male domination was struck in 1298 when Pope Boniface VIII declared that, henceforth, women must obey and never question the all-male hierarchy of the Church of Rome.

If the women who seemingly participated in performing rituals in the early Christian church had been as devious and power-bent as the men, they might have been able to force the men out of the Mass business. The ploy: Since Mass relates to a bloody sacrifice -- only those whom God himself causes to bleed spontaneously -- i.e., women and stigmatics -- should be qualified to say Mass. Of course, there would still be plenty of holy work available for unbleeding holy men. They could care for the poor and the sick.

The Female Pope

In the ninth century, there was a nun from England who wanted to study in Athens, Greece. Since females were barred from the best schools, she cut her hair and dressed like a man. She applied to those schools and she was admitted. She excelled. After graduating, she moved to Rome, retained her male identity and became a priest. She also became a teacher. Her level of enlightenment was so outstanding that she was eventually appointed Cardinal by Pope Leo IV. When he died around 852, she was elected pope -- and took the alias John VIII. The new pope became very popular with the masses because she truly cared about ordinary people -- a most welcome change.

All was well until a warm Spring day in 853. The papal procession had just passed the Coliseum. After stopping to rest on the Via De Corcetti, a newborn infant issued from the papal robes. At first, those who were present were awe struck, thinking they were seeing a divine miracle. However, it was discovered that Pope John VIII had female equipment. One story goes that mother and child were stoned to death on the very spot. Another story says that they escaped and moved to another country. A memorial statue to Pope John VIII was erected at the spot by those who loved her -- the ordinary people. The statue remained there for over 700 years until 1600 when the pope ordered it thrown it into the river. Today the site is occupied by a small shrine to Mary and a pizzacheria.

Needless to say, John VIII's successor, Pope Benedict III, had to undergo a pre-election medical examination to assure that he had the mandatory male equipment. Henceforth, the election rules were changed to make certain that there could never be another female pope. After John VIII, the hierarchy began a cover-up. In 872, another pope took the alias John VIII as though there had never been another John VIII. John VIII#2 reigned for ten years and one day.

The hierarchy is normally quite meticulous about keeping historical records. However, having had a girl boss eventually proved to be a bit much for the boys. Pope John VIII#1 was in the church's history books until the year 1600, whereupon the Jesuits removed the embarrassing pages. They were, however, only following orders.

After John VIII#1 was removed from the official history books, a time gap existed between Leo IV's date of death and Benedict III's accession to the throne. This minor discrepancy was patched up by extending Leo's life. The ex post facto extension of Leo's life was made possible by a remarkable event. This is discussed in detail in the section titled The Adjuster License.

The Mischief Incubator: OK-Sin

One of the objects of Adolph Hitler's admiration, the Jesuits, have a convenient way of categorizing sin. The Jesuits divide sin into two types, malum prohibitum and malum in se -- the latter being by far the more serious. Malum in se is a sin in the eyes of God. Malum prohibitum can be equated to breaking one of man's rules -- but not one of God's laws. In other words, Malum prohibitum is OK-sin. For example, "fixing" a parking ticket, laundering money for drug traffickers, or killing persons who have substantially different religious beliefs comes under malum prohibitum.

The Huguenots were French Protestants who had numerous civil wars and numerous truces with French Catholics. The most infamous conflict began on Saint Bartholomew's Day eve in October 1572. Under the sanction of God's Holy Church, French Catholics murdered at least 10,000 Huguenot men, women, pregnant women, children and babies during six weeks of slaughter. Some historians put the toll at over 20,000. Fortunately, no serious sin was being committed. The butchers were only breaking man's rules -- i.e., malum prohibitum..

Several centuries earlier, Pope Innocent III ordered the slaughter of the Albigenses in Southeastern France. When it was reported that a number of good Catholics families lived among the Albigenses, Innocent responded: kill them all and let God sort them out. On a single day in July, 12,000 people were murdered. The army butchered everyone they found. About a third of the victims were Catholic. This slaughter took place in and around the city of Béziers. The city was looted and burned. Reportedly, no living thing larger than a rat survived in Béziers. After Béziers, Innocent's army moved on. During the entire campaign, about 100,000 people were murdered.

Pope Innocent . . .

These events marked a notable point in the evolution of Christian morality. In second century Rome -- after the local lions had probably grown weary of a steady diet of them -- Christians were officially recognized as pacifists. They were exempted from duty in the Roman Army. Eight centuries later, Christians were -- with the approval of the Holy Father in Rome -- blithely butchering babies and pregnant women.

What brought the holy holocaust upon the Albigenses?

Any casual observer of the day in southern France could see that corrupt members of the Roman church hierarchy were in bed with corrupt politicians. It was pretty much business as usual -- so why all the fuss?

The Albigenses believed in a god of goodness and light and a god of evil and darkness. They believed that the Roman church's immense material wealth and corrupt clergy were proof that the organization had become an agent of the forces of darkness. The Albigenses concluded that if the pope really was God's earthly representative -- as claimed -- he would use his authority to stop the corrupt clergy in southern France who were making ordinary people miserable. In other words, the Albigenses felt that the pope was working for the god of evil and darkness instead of working for the god of goodness and light.

An old adage says: "The most tender nerve is behind the bull's-eye."

The Catholic Encyclopedia - Revised and Updated Edition, ®1987, states that Albigenses were vegetarians, promoted sexual promiscuity, denied the Holy Trinity and they "encouraged actions inimical to state authority"--apparently a euphemism for speaking out against government-church corruption. Instead of taking credit for wiping out these disgusting, promiscuous vermin, God's Holy Church generously gives the credit to "the barons of France, Germany and Belgium." Again quoting: "The Albigenses disappeared by the fourteenth century." Verily, they did disappear -- thanks to genocide.

The Roman church's charge of the Albigenses promoting sexual promiscuity is somewhat suspect. There were two levels of believers in the Albigensian faith. The highest level of believers were called "perfects." They supposedly followed a rule of chastity, like the Roman church's priests -- hardly what one would expect from an organization that "promoted sexual promiscuity." The charge of denying the Holy Trinity is also suspect because the Albigenses believed that Jesus was God.

Concerning the plight of the Huguenots, The Catholic Encyclopedia states that "The road of the Huguenots has not been an easy one." Again, the Roman church generously gives others the credit for dealing out "adversity" to the Huguenots. However, on the front cover they tell us that this book is "Revised." Yea, verily.

There is an Islamic version of Catholicism's OK-sin. On the surface, Islam touts morality. Islam forbids stealing, lying, adultery and most types of murder. However, these rules apply only to the treatment of fellow Muslims. The faithful may steal from, lie to, and bear false witness against non-Muslims.

The Qur'an teaches that men are appointed by Allah to be guardians of women. The Qur'an says that men and women are equal. However, Islam's females are typically denied the right to vote and they are denied an equal inheritance. Muslim females are surgically modified to deny them the right of sexual pleasure. In some Muslim countries, women are not allowed to drive motor vehicles. Islam substantially discounts women's testimony against men in a court of law. Under Islamic canon law -- Sharia -- convicting a Muslim man of rape requires the testimony of four, Muslim male, eye witnesses to the actual act of penetration. Female eyewitnesses are not allowed to give testimony at rape trials in Muslim courts. According to the Qur'an {23:5}, adultery is officially defined as a man having sex with females other than his "wives and slave girls." . . But darling, I wasn't being unfaithful to you. That woman you saw me copulating in the garden was merely one of my "slave-girls."

Sharia currently sets the age of consent for a female at nine years -- provided she has had at least three menstrual cycles. Needless to say, under Sharia, convictions for child sexual abuse are virtually impossible. All in the name of Allah the merciful, the compassionate.

Islam's questionable treatment of females has a long tradition. According to The Cradle of Erotica by Allen Edwardes and R. E. L. Masters (Julian Press, Inc., N.Y.), the prophet himself had a wife, 'Ayisheh bint Abu Bekr, who was six years of age when she married the prophet. However, Muslims are quick to point out that Muhammad did not copulate Ayisheh until she was eight years and 10-months old.

Islamic Fundamentalism

Islam has some positive aspects. Social justice is one of the Pillars of Islam. The Islamic social welfare system -- Zakat -- is more efficient and effective than anything the west has been able to come up with. Quite unlike Christianity, which has a tradition of opposition to scientific truth that continues to this day, the Qur'an stresses that believers should use their reasoning abilities to the fullest. This policy led Muslims toward the sciences instead of away from them. Algebra and the base 10 number system are Arab inventions. From the 9th to the 13th century, Islamic scholars excelled in astronomy, philosophy, mathematics, medicine and natural science. This era was Islam's golden age -- and part of Christianity's Dark Age. Today, however, Islam is better known for mayhem than for math and medicine. The reason for this problem is not due to what was written in the Qur'an. Of all the ancient scriptures in existence, the Qur'an is undoubtedly the most pure. The problem is tradition. Muslims place much importance on accepted Muslim tradition, or Hadith. Because Hadith was propagated orally, it is less credible than the Qur'an. Over the centuries, Hadith was affected by those who wanted to inject certain theological ideas and legal opinions. In some instances, Hadith is at odds with the Qur'an. For example, according to Hadith, Muslims are not allowed to drink alcohol. However, according to the Qur'an, believers are advised not to be drunk with wine when praying to Allah.

Even though Muhammad taught religious tolerance and moderation, present day Muslims have a tendency to engage in religious violence. There are five schools of Islamic law and at least 73 Islamic sects -- a number of whom are bitter rivals. Some of these sects believe they are licensed by Allah to kill rival Muslims as well as persons who subscribe to other faiths. Hamas, Hezbollah [the Party of God], and the Islamic Brotherhood are examples of violent sects. Even though such groups are referred to as Muslim fundamentalists, many of their beliefs are not based on the Qur'an. Fundamentalists probably account for no more than 5% of those who consider themselves to be Muslim.

As we saw in Iran, Islamic fundamentalism's goal is to violently replace every government, democratic and otherwise, with an Islamic republic governed by Sharia. In Iran, Sharia is law. Christians and Jews are openly discriminated against and openly persecuted. They can not hold public office -- even if elected. Non-Muslim victims of Muslim criminals have no legal recourse under Sharia since a Muslim's courtroom testimony outweighs a non-Muslim's courtroom testimony.

Egyptian President Anwar Sadat initially tried to deal with Islamic fundamentalists by jailing them. In 1981, he declared an amnesty and released most of them from jail. They rewarded Sadat with assassination. Sadat's successor, President Hosni Mubarak has been targeted for assassination by Muslim fundamentalists. In June of 1995, during a visit to Ethiopia, a team of Muslim assassins from Sudan attempted to kill Mubarak. Three of the would-be assassins were killed at the scene.

Before Sadat was assassinated, Syria also had a problem with Muslim fundamentalists. After the assassination of Sadat, Syrian President Hafez al-Assad began to take preventative measures. By 1983, about 20,000 fundamentalists had been rounded up by the Syrian Army. No trace of them has ever been found.

The dividing line between Islamic fundamentalism and moderate Islam is blurred. Moderates like to give the impression that they have a live and let live attitude. Most of the Muslims who attend mosques in the United States and Great Britain claim to be moderates. Mention Salmon Rushdie's name, however, and many moderates undergo a sudden metamorphosis into eager would-be assassins. Rushdie's controversial book -- The Satanic Verses -- is a fictional story about a fictional prophet. The book portrays its prophet as one who was subject to human frailties. In his later years, the book depicts its fictional prophet as being somewhat inept. However, one of his younger wives keeps the fictional prophet and his new religion on track. This fictional wife appears to have been based on 'Ayisheh bint Abu Bekr -- who reached her prime while her husband was in decline.

In 1989, shortly before his death, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini called for the assassination of Mr. Rushdie. The Ayatollah said he never read Mr. Rushdie's book.

It seems appropriate that the English word assassin came from an Arabic word.

Mr. Rushdie appears to have hit the proverbial bull's-eye with his book. Even those who translate The Satanic Verses from English into other languages are subject to Islamic displeasure. The translator of the Italian version, Ettore Capriolo, was attacked in his apartment on July 3, 1991. He survived the attack. Professor Hitoshi Igarashi translated the book into Japanese. On July 12, 1991 he was carved to death -- Muslim assassin style -- at Tsukuba University near Tokyo.

Christian Religions

One might assume that if a person is credited with founding a religion, that religion would be following the teachings of its founder. There are, however, some differences between what present-day organized Christian religions teach and what Christianity's alleged founder is reported to have stated. The founder's name was not Jesus. The Dead Sea Scrolls mention a popular teacher named Yeshua (pronounced yea-shoo-ah) who appears to have been this person. The scrolls refer to Yeshua as being known as the "Teacher of Righteousness." Yeshua was a carpenter from the city of Nazareth.

The focus of Christian religions is to secure forgiveness of sin from God. With forgiveness of sin in hand, the alleged reward is eternal reunion with God and loved ones in the big penthouse in the sky. The basic theme in the Old Testament section of the Bible is that God wants sacrifice to pay for forgiveness of sin -- a conviction shared by "heathen" and/or "pagan" religions. Curiously, Satanism is based on sacrifice. Animal sacrifice was once an essential part of Judaism.

Here's one version of the sacrifice business: People sin. To receive forgiveness of sin, a holy man kills a ram or a lamb or a goat or a kid, four legged, hopefully, and sin is professedly forgiven.

So far, we have a god who appears to be wishy-washy, spiteful, talks to himself, and is into bloody gore.

It seems to me that if God -- a.k.a. the Father -- really wanted sacrifice, it would not have been necessary for him to send a teacher to tell people what he really wants.

At the age of about 30, the carpenter from Nazareth began his informal, low budget, lecture tour that commenced around the year 26 and concluded around the year 29 when we was 33 and one-half years old. He called himself the "Son of man." During the lecture tour, the Son of man reportedly stated that God did not want sacrifice. {Matthew 9 and 13) Instead, God wanted people to forgive and love each other, enemies included -- but within reason. Curiously, the within reason element is obfuscated by all versions of modern Christianity. Thus, doing what is humanly reasonable does not measure up -- which helps to justify the tired old sacrifice business, which conveniently puts holy men back in business.

The news that God is not into sacrifice should please animal rights activists. However, loving virtually everyone is more burdensome than the quick fix of a sacrifice. It's easy to be nice to people who reciprocate, but forgiving enemies is against basic human nature.

To understand what he was about, I recommend reading the Son of man's Sermon on the Mount. It is recorded in the book of Matthew, beginning in Chapter 5. Parallels are found in the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Here are some of the main points:

According to the founder of Christianity, the bottom-line on prayer is simply that each person has a direct line. Go-betweens are specifically not authorized. On this matter, the Qur'an is in complete agreement.

Obviously, these concepts contradict what go-betweens -- i.e., holy men -- tell people. Being contradicted is something that holy men abhor. To make matters even worse, the Son of man rated holy men below prostitutes. The Son of man deservedly gained a reputation as a troublemaker with the Judaic powers-that-be. The high council of Jewish holy men, the Sanhedrin, had good reason to shut this guy up. If they failed to silence him they might have to get real jobs and, God forbid, earn a living. The holy men had political connections. They conspired to have the troublemaker executed by the Roman government.


Like the pagan concept of a triple-personality deity, paganesque ritual-cannibalism sacrifice was also woven into Christianity. This began around the 4th century. I can appreciate that at least some of what follows will sound pretty hard to swallow, but here are two versions: For Roman Catholics after the year 1215, in the mouths of the faithful, bread and wine are alleged to literally change into the flesh and blood of the Son of man. This is called transubstantiation. Apparently there is no such thing as a vegetarian Catholic after the year 1215. For other Christians and pre - 1215 Roman Catholics, the wine and bread represent a symbolic ritual-cannibalistic sacrifice of the Son of man's flesh and blood.

Before these paganesque practices could begin, a problem had to be overcome. In order to come up with a perfect sacrifice that would appear to magically wash away all sin, there should be no blemishes. The person who was allegedly sacrificed -- Yeshua/Jesus/the Son of man/Teacher of Righteousness -- would have to be perfect. As he is portrayed in the New Testament section of the Bible, the Son of man drank and ate copiously, had marginal standards of personal hygiene, occasionally exhibited a rather nasty temper, and he partied with the dregs of society. At one point, he reportedly fasted for 40 days and 40 nights -- meaning that he was probably about 70 pounds overweight before he began the fast. The holy men wasted no time in pointing out all of these weaknesses and bad habits. He knew he wasn't perfect. The only one that he said was perfect was the Father. {Matthew 5:48}

After a trinity was added to Christianity in the 4th century, the formerly imperfect Son of man professedly became perfect God the Father. This was the critical turning point. Holy men began to promote the concept that perfect God had sacrificed himself to "pay" for man's sin. The identity of who was paid remains a divine mystery. This idea sounds incredible, but it had to be incredible to be marketable in the Salvation business -- a point that would not have been lost on P. T. Barnum, Saint Augustine, or Oscar Wilde.

Even though the Son of man reportedly said that the Father did not want sacrifice, holy men need sacrifice. Sacrifice does mean salvation -- the salvation of their jobs and the salvation of the hocus-pocus machinery that gives them power to control people -- which brings them that most-prized carrot -- respect, as well as a steady supply of greenbacks.

Modern Judaism rejects the Christian concept of God sacrificing himself to save mankind from God's punishment. The concept is generally perceived as being empty-headed and spiritually bankrupt. Yet Christians entertain the idea of "saving" the Jews. It seems more appropriate to ask who or what can save Christianity from the grip of at least 15 centuries of human meddling?

The basic problem with what the Son of man reportedly said in the Sermon on the Mount is that the main points are impractical for use in a power-bent organized religion. There were no secret words that had magical power. There were no esoteric rituals for so-called holy men to perform that could elicit God's favor. Theire was no profit mechanism.

The Holy Trinity and its adjunct, ritual-cannibalistic sacrifice are discussed further in the section titled Abortion and Other Hot Topics.

The Gate

There is a religion that sounds more like what the Son of man intended. It began in Persia [Iran] in 1844 with a teacher, Mirza Ali Muhammad of Shìraz. He was called The Bab {pronounced: bahb} which means 'The Gate.' In the beginning the faith was called Babism. At the urging of Muslim holy men, the Bab was executed by Shah Nasr-ed-Din in 1850. After 20,000 followers of the Bab were killed, Babism disappeared. As was prophesied by the Bab, 19 years after his execution a new faith would be born. This faith came to be called Baha'i. It was begun in Baghdad by a student of the Bab -- Mirza Hoseyn Ali Nuri. He was called Baha'u'llah -- which means "Splendor of Allah". He said that teachers come into the world, as needed, to restore divine teachings that have been distorted by human meddlers. Just as he had followed the Bab, Baha'u'llah said that other teachers would follow him because all religions were subject to human contamination. And so, Baha'i was one of many temporary stepping stones in the search for truth.

In Baha'i, there are no priests. No infallible person is in charge. There is no Divine-Hotline. Baha'i is not based on any type of sacrifice. Baha'i is a very loose knit organization. Baha'is believe in: the oneness of God, the oneness of mankind, the commonality of all religions -- and in their susceptibility to contamination by human meddlers. Baha'i espouses individual search for truth without interference.

Muslims take great pride in the fact that Islam (7th century) is of a later vintage than either Christianity or Judaism. Muslims also believe that Muhammad was the last of God's prophets. However, I can find nothing in the Qur'an to support such a claim. Baha'i accepts the Bab, Jesus of Nazareth and Muhammad ibn Abdallah as prophets. From the beginning, Muslims found Babism and Baha'i to be a source of extreme irritation. In the eyes of Muslim holy men, the Baha'i faith represents a serious threat to their power and respect.

Baha'u'llah's goal was to establish a universal religion. His teachings urging moral and social improvement were spread mainly by his eldest son, Abbas. He was called Abd ul-Baha (Arabic, "the Servant of the Glory"). After 1908, Abdu'l-Baha traveled to Europe and North America to introduce his father's teachings. Since 1920, Baha'i has had its greatest following in the U.S. There are presently more than 1700 Baha'i spiritual assemblies in the U.S.

After the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, Baha'is who refused to convert to Islam were legally executed. Thousands of Baha'is fled Iran and came to the United States. Every Baha'i building in Iran has been meticulously destroyed down to bare soil.

"…religion must be the cause of unity, harmony and agreement among mankind. If it be the cause of discord and hostility, if it leads to separation and creates conflict, the absence of religion would be preferable in the world." --`Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith, page 247.

Abortion and Other Hot Topics

The Toasted Library

The port city of Alexandria, Egypt was founded in 332 BC by Alexander the Great. A city library was built. The Alexandria Library was a repository for the knowledge of the world. In those days, before the advent of movable type and Xerox copiers, such a library was important because, in many cases, only the original volume of a book existed. Scholars from all nations were welcome to use the library. The library proved to be very popular and it's fame spread. After the main library was filled with books, an annex was constructed. Our Library of Congress, which contains more than 27 million books, was modeled on the principle of the Alexandria Library.

In 381, the Christian church, which was then tri-headquartered in Constantinople, Rome and Alexandria, held a church council -- the First Council of Constantinople. At this council, the relatively new concept of the Christian Trinity was reinforced. The introduction of this old, paganesque concept marked the beginning of a long series of changes to the Christian belief system. Other paganesque elements were subsequently incorporated. In the year 400, ritual-sacrifice was added. In 431, mother-goddess worship was added.


There was a so-called "pagan" religion from Persia that was especially popular with the Roman military. Mithraism was brought to Rome in 68 BC. Mithra was the ancient Persian god of light and wisdom. In the Avesta, a sacred collection of Zoroastrian writings, Mithra appears as the chief divinity. However, Mithraism was not precisely monotheistic. There is a polytheistic element that is similar to the Trinity. The basics of Mithraism were: baptism, holy communion, the ideals of humility and brotherly love, the use of holy water, the belief in the immortality of the soul, a day of judgment, and resurrection. The holy day was Sundays -- not Saturdays as Jesus/Yeshua observed. An important Mithraist celebration was December 25--Mithra's birthday.

In 380, Roman Emperor Theodosius I decreed that Christianity replace paganism as the official religion of the Roman Empire. Adopting elements from paganism made Christianity more acceptable to members of pagan churches whom the Christian church sought to convert -- i.e., control. In 392, all non-Christian rituals were outlawed in the Roman Empire. This law was of little importance. The merchandise was pretty much the same. However, the name of the franchise had changed.

A successful marriage involves compromise from both parties. After the year 380, Christianity and politics would never be the same. Historian John E. E. Acton wrote --

"The church became the gilded crutch of absolutism."

The marriage of Christianity and politics would probably have astonished anyone who heard the lecture tour of the person who is credited with founding Christianity.

The Library Arson

After the Christian church's First Council of Constantinople ended, arsonists began trying to burn down the Alexandria Library. At first, the Alexandrians valiantly extinguished the fires and fought off the arsonists. Theodosius and his fellow Roman Christians finally succeeded in burning the main library and its annex to the ground in 391. Nearly everything was lost. And just for good measure, the arsonists burned down some competing churches while they were in the neighbourhood. This arson resulted in the greatest single loss of knowledge in history. For example, the Greek dramatist, Sophocles (c. 496 - 406 BC) wrote more than 100 plays. Today, seven of his plays exist. The arson of the Alexandria Library was an event that changed the course of history.

However, the Roman church did not succeed in wiping out all of the records it sought to destroy. East of Alexandria, in some obscure caves near the Dead Sea, a literary time-bomb would lay dormant for 16 centuries.

The Dead Sea Scrolls are significant because they contain records from the 1st century -- the century that gave the world Christianity. As previously mentioned, a teacher named Yeshua is chronicled in the scrolls. Most experts agree that he is the person Christians call Jesus. Here's a photocopy of his name from the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The Dead Sea Scrolls were written in Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek. They were mostly written on papyrus and parchment. In Cave Three (Q3), one two-part scroll was written on copper foil. The Scrolls consist of more than 800 documents. Money for housing and research was provided by the John D. Rockefeller/Standard Oil fortune. The scrolls were initially under the control of the Jordanian government. After the Six Day War in 1967, control of the scrolls passed to the Israeli government.

The first cache of scrolls was discovered in the Fall of 1946 by a shepherd looking for lost goats near the ancient ruins of the city of Qumran, near the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea. Qumran is about 15 miles east of Bethlehem. The shepherd tossed a rock up into a cave on a cliff to roust any stray goats. The rock struck a pot. When the shepherd heard the familiar sound of breaking pottery, he climbed up and entered the cave. He realized that he had found something very old and valuable. Inside the first cave was a copy of Isaiah from the Torah and the Old Testament. It was in excellent condition because it had been stored in pottery. It has been dated at around 300 BC. The shepherd had discovered the city library of Qumran.

Since there was very little difference between the old and contemporary versions of Isaiah, there was no controversy. Probably because they were not written during the 1st century, none of the other documents in the first cache of scrolls proved to be controversial. By 1955, photocopies of the complete first cache had been published.

Meanwhile, more caves were discovered which contained documents. The most recent major finds were made in 1960. Caves Four (Q4) and Eleven (Q11) yielded a wealth of material. About 500 of the documents were in bits and pieces because they had not been stored in pottery. It was a jigsaw puzzle with more than 80,000 parts. The scrolls were housed in the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem {originally named the Palestine Archaeological Museum (1938)}. Responsibility for the preservation and translation was turned over to an international team of scholars -- a more appropriate term for which turned out to be clique. This clique eventually came under the control of the Ecole Biblique in Jerusalem. The director of Ecole Biblique was Father Roland de Vaux -- a man who has been described as extremely intelligent, fiercely vindictive and ruthless. De Vaux belonged to the Dominican Order. On the surface, Ecole Biblique appeared to be an impartial scholarly institution.

John M. Allegro, the British member of the international team, was randomly assigned material from Q4. Although no one realized it at the time, the Q4 material would turn out to be of a most sensitive nature. Allegro slowly came to realize that the material he was translating was somehow connected with Christianity. On the 16th, 23rd and 30th of January 1956, John Allegro gave three short talks on the Dead Sea Scrolls that were broadcast over BBC radio in northern England. On the 5th of February, 1956, the New York Times published an article about these talks. The headline was: Christian Basis Seen in Scrolls. Allegro's opinion was reasonable. A certain teacher is mentioned in the scrolls from Q4. Words attributed to him parallel what is recorded in the Sermon on the Mount and other lectures by the "Son of man" in the New Testament. The independent conformation that this teacher really existed would seem to be good news for Christian churches. However, other parts of the account in the scrolls differ from what virtually all Christian churches currently teach about the teacher. In 325, Christian churches began promoting the concept that this teacher was God and the Messiah. Nothing in the Dead Sea Scrolls supports this concept. John Allegro did not realize the jeopardy he was in.

From this point on, Father de Vaux embarked on a ruthless campaign to discredit and smear Allegro. The tactic de Vaux used would have brought approving smiles to the faces of Goebbels, Himmler, and Hitler. It was a variation of the old half truth trick. De Vaux mixed factual quotes of Allegro with bogus quotes he attributed to Allegro. The plan was initially successful. Allegro was quoted and misquoted by a number of supposedly credible publications. In the minds of those who didn't know any better, Allegro's reputation was damaged. He became discouraged. However, after his death in 1988, Allegro was slowly vindicated as the truth of the matter unfolded. In the end, Father de Vaux, like President Richard M. Nixon, succeeded only in discrediting himself and the institution he tried to protect.

During the Third Reich, de Vaux was pro-fascist and anti-Semitic. He was a member of Action Française, a militant Catholic movement that extolled the cult of 'blood and soil'--a concept promoted in Hitler's book Mein Kampf.. When de Vaux died in 1971, he successfully bequeathed his rights and rank to Father Pierre Benoit, another Dominican priest. From an academic standpoint, such action was without precedent. From a legal standpoint, it was at least suspect. When Father Patrick Skehan died in 1980, he bequeathed his position to Eugene Ulrich, a professor of religion at the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana. Not until 1987, on the death of Father Pierre Benoit, was this practice questioned openly.

There had been rumors of foot-dragging -- but when all outside scholars were suddenly denied access to view the scrolls, the writing on the academic wall became abundantly clear. The most important archeological find of the 20th century had been kidnapped by once-respected members of the academic community. Somebody, or some organization, was trying to hide something. Subsequently it was discovered that the Ecole Biblique was hardly independent. It was controlled by the Pontifical Biblical Commission in Rome. No scholar working under the Ecole Biblique could publish anything which might contradict the Pontifical Biblical Commission's doctrinal authority. Naturally, the head of the Pontifical Biblical Commission is the pontiff -- Karol Wojtyla, Pope John Paul II.

The secretary of the Pontifical Biblical Commission is also the secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith -- originally called the Holy Inquisition when it was founded in 1231. The executive head of the Inquisition was originally called the Grand Inquisitor -- the most famous of which was Father Tomás de Torquemada (1420-1498)--another Dominican priest. He was appointed Grand Inquisitor in 1487 by Pope Innocent VIII. Under Torquemada's authority, many people were tortured and killed. Virtually everyone knew there was nothing holy about the Holy Inquisition. By the 16th century, the Holy Inquisition's reputation had become so scandalous it was causing a P.R. problem for the Roman church. In 1542 the name was changed from Holy Inquisition to Holy Office. In 1965 the name was changed to Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith -- the executive head /Secretary of which is currently Cardinal Joseph Ratsinger. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is the most powerful branch of the Roman church. In earlier times Ratsinger's title would have been Grand Inquisitor instead of Secretary.

Untying the Knot

Early in the post-1946 saga of the Scrolls, Betty Bechtel, of the Bechtel (construction) Corporation, entrusted the Huntington Library, in San Marino, California, with a photocopy of the material for safekeeping -- just in case of yet another Arab/Israeli conflict. By doing this, Betty Bechtel changed the course of history. The Huntington Library agreed not to allow anyone to view the photocopies until after the international team published their translations. Eventually, the Huntington Library became suspicious of the clique's motives for the incredulous delay in publishing certain scrolls. Something drastic had to be done. In the Fall of 1991, the Huntington Library announced that it would publish the controversial photocopies. This action violated the old agreement with the international team/clique. Members of the clique exploded with rage. During an interview on the MacNeil-Lehrer News Hour, Professor Ulrich angrily threatened to sue the library. There were references to "treachery," "theft of scholarly work" and "piracy." In January 1992, the photocopies were published. However, three of the documents are inexplicably missing. John Allegro was of the opinion that some of the Dead Sea Scrolls had somehow found their way to the Vatican. In the light of recent events, Allegro may have been on to something.

Anyway -- getting back to the main subject: Theodosius' trip to Alexandria in 391 was probably not a case of a firebug club on holiday. The arson of 391 cleared the way for convenient adjustments to Christianity that otherwise could have been contradicted by books that were in the Library of Alexandria.

Abortion and Murder

Warning: If you are a devout atheist, you are quite likely to be offended by this section.

Early Christianity professed that a soul could be reborn many times. In other words, we might not go around only once. If a person died in infancy, in the next life he or she might be able to do a bit better. There is an item in one of the scrolls that seems to support the early belief in soul-rebirth. The writer relates a conversation between a well known teacher and two sisters. The teacher reportedly told the sisters that each soul climbs a ladder with many rungs. Each rung on the ladder represents a life. The writer reported that the teacher's male followers were annoyed when they learned that this disclosure was made to women. {In the 1st century, women were viewed as property -- like domestic animals.}

Why attempt to suppress such information?

The idea that this teacher had serious dialogue with women may pose a threat to patriarchal organized religions. Additionally, the idea of soul-rebirth is contrary to the current teaching of many such religions. Judaism teaches that there is nothing -- no reward and no punishment after death. The Roman church teaches that eternal reward or punishment follows one's life on Earth. However, eternal reward is seldom immediate -- some saints excepted. An appropriate temporary stay in Purgatory -- a sort of semi-Hell with the thermostat turned down -- is professed to precede Paradise.

If we presume that there is a creator who loves people, soul-rebirth seems to make sense. For example, suppose that a baby is born with a severe genetic defect. The genetic defect causes death after a few weeks. To me, it seems likely that a loving creator would give that soul another chance for a life on Earth. The "pro-life" people believe that no other opportunity for life would be given -- even though they vehemently profess to believe in a loving God.

Suppose that a pregnant woman discovers that the fetus she is carrying is severely defective and doomed to a brief, tormented life. Armed with this information, the woman chooses to abort. The "pro-life" people open their own mouths, but the words we hear echo the religious inculcation of their childhoods. They have no problem with shouting "murderer" in the face of a pregnant woman who seeks to abort her defective fetus.

Why did the Christian religion abandon the belief in soul-rebirth?

There is probably no conclusive single answer to that question -- but here's one possibility: If each soul receives more than one opportunity for life on this planet, no sense of immediate urgency exists for coming to church regularly to supposedly receive forgiveness of sin. A more compelling incentive was needed -- i.e., the threat of eternal roasting. In the following centuries, Christianity expanded rapidly. This ploy would have had some rough sledding in the land of the Eskimos since their concept of Hell is a place of eternal cold.

When medical means of terminating pregnancies became available. The hierarchy of the Roman church was initially pro-choice. Pope Gregory XIII (1572 - 1585) concluded that terminating a pregnancy was morally acceptable provided that doctor and patient concurred -- and that the medical procedure took place within 40 days. If the mother's life was in danger, termination/abortion was permitted at any time during the pregnancy. After a few decades, the church began to drift slowly toward a different position. After 1895, abortion was not allowed -- not even to avoid the mother's death.

When Life Begins -- and Ends

A widely accepted definition of the end of life is when brain activity ceases . Virtually all organized religions seem to accept that when the brain is gone, life is gone. Many pro-life people accept this as fact. However, a fetus exhibits zero brain activity until well into the last half of a pregnancy.

What is the difference between disconnecting a body, that has no brain activity, from life-support and disconnecting a fetus, that has no brain activity, from life-support?

Liturgical Legislation

Current laws in predominantly Roman Catholic countries tend to mirror current church teaching on abortion . In March 1993, newly independent Poland outlawed abortion. As previously stated, abortion is absolutely illegal in Ireland. An Irish or Polish woman who has a problem-pregnancy can not receive appropriate medical treatment in her own country. Poland may be free of Russian tyranny, and Ireland may be free of English tyranny, but neither country treats women equitably.

The Condom Conundrum

The Roman church's current position on abortion was issued on July 25, 1968 by Pope Paul VI in Humanae Vitae. Terminating even problem pregnancies as well as real contraception were equated with premeditated murder. However, banning the use of real contraception makes more abortions necessary.

Married, faithful Catholics can use two types of so-called contraception. One of the officially-approved methods of contraception -- the rhythm method, which is temperature-based -- is a reliable method of becoming pregnant. The other method of approved contraception for true-believers is infallible -- no sex -- a recommendation that comes rather easily from the lips of sexually-dysfunctional individuals.

The subject of real contraception appears to cause much angst among the Roman churccurse of dark skinh hierarchy. Effective birth control seems to threaten the all-male hierarchy's power to control females. According to the teaching of the hierarchy, using a condom is premeditated murder if it prevents a pregnancy. However, preventing some pregnancies by use of the Roman church's hit-and-miss rhythm method somehow does not constitute premeditated murder. Perhaps this could be another one of those 'divine mysteries' that boggles lay minds.

"I can not believe that salvation is based on contraception by temperature and damnation is based on rubber". -- Dr. André Hellegers, member of the pontifical commission on birth control.

The "pro-life" movement's agenda extends far beyond outlawing medical abortion. They seek to outlaw condoms and all other means of real contraception including RU-486 -- also known as the "morning after pill" and the "abortion pill" -- as well as to outlaw surgical sterilization.

Outlawing condoms is not as far fetched as it may sound. Until fairly recent times, it was unlawful to sell condoms in Massachusetts or in the Province of Quebec. The Christian lobby had been able to influence more than half of the elected lawmakers in those jurisdictions -- while vehemently maintaining that it endorses the separation of church and state. Before the anti-contraceptive laws were overturned, MA and Quebec residents who chose to use condoms had to smuggle them in as contraband. In Ireland, condoms are still classed as contraband, along with heroin and cocaine. Irish heroin smugglers would be well advised not to smuggle heroin in condoms.

In jurisdictions where organized Christian religions had less influence, Christian lobbyists had to settle for less. In California, there was no way that the sanctimonious could keep condoms out of the hands of those who could vote their state lawmakers out of office. However, for many years the Christian lobby was successful in keeping condoms out of the hands of Californians who could not vote -- i.e., high school students -- the group who needed condoms most. This law was repealed only after it became painfully obvious that it was abetting the spread of socially transmitted diseases and increasing the rate of teenage abortion.

If the "pro-life" people want to be taken seriously when they picket and block abortion clinics, they should carry signs which state that, as an alternative to abortion, they will adopt and care for babies who are born without a skull to hold their brains -- a condition that occurs in approximately 0.08% of live births.

Natural Abortion (a.k.a. miscarriage)

On average, 20% of all pregnancies are spontaneously aborted in miscarriage. Typically, a fetus is naturally aborted because there is a problem with the fetus and/or a problem with the mother. Additionally, in the early weeks of pregnancies there are many other such abortions that pass unknown into sewer systems since the women who experience them often think they had nothing more than a heavy menstrual period following one or more missed periods.

If the pro-life movement wants to see some firsthand evidence of major abortion, they should visit a large metropolitan sewer plant. Naturally aborted human fetuses are routinely caught by filter screens and diverted for additional processing. According to a worker at the Hiperion sewage treatment facility in Los Angeles, California, thousands of tiny human fetuses are screened out weekly.

Nature is not perfect. Some defective fetuses are not naturally aborted. If someone does not give them a helping hand, they are doomed to being born and suffering a slow, painful death. For a person who believes that suffering is one of the paths to Salvation, this prospect is not at all bad.

Pro-life doctors are reluctant to allow a natural abortion in one of their patients. In Port Hueneme, California, a pregnant woman was beginning to go into labor near the beginning of the 2nd trimester. She was rushed to the hospital. Her pro-life doctor was able to stop labor. By the use of drugs and months of bed rest, the doctor forced the pregnancy to continue. When the baby was born, its bladder was outside the body, it had no rectum, and it was retarded. The mother had to spend much time and money caring for the defective child. This deprived the mother of time she could spend with her two normal children.

The prime question that needs be debated in Congress on the issue of abortion seemingly is:

Does anyone have the right to deny a relatively safe medical abortion -- or a natural abortion -- to a woman who is carrying a severely defective fetus?

The "pro-life" movement is probably the best example of a powerful, single cause political pressure group that substitutes inculcated emotions for reasoning.

The Bible

Its title was derived from the Greek word biblion, meaning books. The Bible is a collection of roughly five dozen books. Some books were written by more than one author -- if not written by committee. The Bible is widely touted as being "The inspired word of God."

One way of giving the desired spin to a document is to add footnotes to presumably help clarify the meaning. The most prolific footnoter of Bible passages is the Roman church. In pre - 1964 editions of their English translation of the Bible, some pages in the New Testament section have more footnote space than text space. The sheer density of footnotes invites comparison to a smoke-screen. The pages which contain quotes by the Son of man are the most heavily footnoted. Some of the footnotes appear to contradict the text. An example is the subject of divorce. The latest edition of their Bible contains far fewer footnotes.

Another method of giving a translation the right spin is by giving special attention to the translation of certain words. English translations are good candidates for this shenanigan since no other language has as many words to choose from. Words that have a clear meaning in the original language may be translated into English words that have a vague meaning in the context.

The Bible is an elaborate tangle of loosely connected, often bizarre stories. There is much truth in the adage: "You can prove almost anything in the Bible." By choosing carefully among its plethora of passages, almost any theological position can be absolutely confirmed in the Bible. Vernon Howell, alias David Koresh -- the leader of the Branch Davidian sect in Waco, Texas, was a remarkable expert on the Bible. Koresh memorized most of it. He could retrieve Bible passages faster than most computers. By combining Bible passages with his spin, Koresh could prove almost anything he wanted. Koresh said: "If the Bible is true, I am Christ." Koresh reportedly found one passage in the Bible that he proved referred to Koresh's own penis. Koresh used Bible passages to convince the males in the Branch Davidian compound that he, David Koresh, was the only male God had authorized to have sex with the females in the compound. Using this ploy, Koresh fathered about two dozen children. He used the Bible to prove that it was God's will that Koresh have sex with girls as young as 12 years of age -- an activity that warrants a semipermanent stay in Texas prisons, as well as reportedly somewhat less-than-friendly-treatment from fellow prison inmates.

After the siege of the Branch Davidian compound began, Koresh knew that, if he was taken alive, a humiliating public trial and rather unpleasant incarceration for his crimes against children awaited him. This would be a heavy burden for a self-professed prophet of God to bear. Koresh chose mass suicide by arson. Videotape evidence revealed that the fire broke out simultaneously in three areas of the compound. When the smoke cleared, 81 were dead. Three of the children, as well as Koresh, had been killed by point-blank rifle shots to the head, well before the fire started.

The matter of Bible credibility is complex. There are at least 60 translations of the Bible -- many of whom are in less than in perfect agreement with one another. Within the same translation, there are contradictions. To further complicate the matter, some translations include books that other translations leave out. And yet, many people believe that every word in their Bible is absolute supreme truth.

Some Bible translations are more vague than others. For example, the New International Translation is more vague than the King James Translation. For someone who is trying to put their own spin on things, the New International Translation is a good choice. Some churches have gone to the trouble and expense of creating their own translations of the Bible. The Jehovah's Witnesses and the Roman church are two.

Examples of problems with Bible translations are found in the first book, Genesis. According to Rabbi Allen S. Maller of Temple Akiva in Culver City, California, the Garden of Eden story, which begins at the end of Chapter 2 and continues to the end of Chapter 3, was not a story about a guy, his girlfriend, and their landlord. In the original Hebrew version of Genesis , there is no person named Adam and no person named Eve. The Hebrew word adam is not a name. The word adam means humanity or mankind. The Hebrew word khavah, which means womankind, is not a name -- and yet it was translated as "Eve." In the original version, there was no apple. The Garden of Eden segment of Genesis was originally an allegory -- not a literal story as it is touted by Christianity. The Christian version of the Garden of Eden segment forms the basis for the Christian concept that connects sex and sin. Christians call it "original sin." Rabbi Abraham Feinberg" called it "…indisputably the greatest power ever lodged in human hands."

As Dr. Louis S. B. Leakey (1903-1972) sometimes noted in his lectures, an English translation problem with Genesis is found in the Creation segment. In the original Hebrew version, the intervals were measured in non-specific periods of time. Curiously, translators chose the word "day" instead. Like the Garden of Eden allegory, Genesis' Creation lost something in the translation. Many Jews and very few Christians are aware of this. More than nine out ten Jews are strongly opposed to teaching Creationism in public schools -- while most Christians support teaching it.

Many people accept the Great Flood and Noah's Ark as fact. If the account is true, proof should be easy to find since water immersion has a clear effect on geologic formations. There is, however, no geological evidence of any such flood in the three-plus billion year history of Earth. This should not come as a surprise. There simply isn't enough water to go around. Even if all of the Earth's ice melted, elevations greater than about 90 meters above mean sea level would remain high and dry.

The story of the Tower of Babel {Genesis chapters 10 and 11} has problems. As the story goes, The Tower of Babel was built by Noah's sons as a publicity stunt to promote a new city they were building in the Land of Shinar. The Tower was touted as being so tall that its top reached into the heavens. The tallest all-masonry structure ever built was the Great Pyramid at Giza -- at roughly 400 feet in height. Building a tower of baked bricks that "reached into the heavens" is an engineering impossibility. The problem is that bricks don't have a good strength of compression. Another engineering problem was the use of "bitumen" (tar) mortar. Bitumen might have worked okay during the winter months, but the Land of Shinar would have become the Land of Tar (and cheap used bricks) during the following summer. Furthermore, liability insurance on the Tower would have been completely out of the question. In any event, God apparently disapproved of the Tower publicity gimmick -- probably not so much because of its puny height, but probably because of its blight. As the story in Genesis goes, God decided to discourage any other such projects by causing the participants to miraculously start speaking different languages. What had once been communication, henceforth became babel. The idea that the existence of the world's thousands of spoken languages was the result of divine wrath because some enterprising guys invented outdoor advertising -- which angered God, sounds like suitable material for a Steve Martin movie or a Saturday Night Live skit.

For churches that use their own translation of the Bible, if a passage in the Bible appears to contradict church doctrine, key words can be "retranslated" by the hierarchy to bring the passage into plausible agreement with the hierarchy's agenda. Another tool that is used to reinforce church doctrine is the footnote. Naturally, these supposedly helpful footnotes can be depended upon to support the hierarchy's teachings.

The Old Testament section of the Bible contains some stories that, if depicted accurately in a motion picture or on television, would be condemned as obscene and/or pornographic by good Christians. One example is the story of Lot and his two virgin daughters. These girls can be described as aggressively incestuous. The girls' stated reason for seducing their father was that there were no other suitable males available for continuing the family "seed." However, according to archeological evidence, there was no shortage of other settlements in this region at that time. Another problem with the story of Lot is the part where the girls got their father so drunk he allegedly did not realize that he was having sex with his own daughters. However, when a male is that drunk, it is virtually impossible to have an erection. According to the Bible story, both of Lot's daughters became pregnant by Lot. It would only be fair to say that the Lot family had a lot of problems. The Bible's "Song of Solomon" is the erotic bottom-line on T and A. Thank you, Lenny Bruce. For those interested in pornography, the 23rd chapter of Ezekiel is hard to beat.

Considering the contents of the Bible, it might seem incredible that Christian parents casually allow their children to tote this patently pornographic book to Sunday school and church. However, the saving grace is that children rarely find the spicy material therein since the Bible has a tendency to be boring.

If you are considering reading some of its sexually-oriented material, the more literal translations of the Bible are best. The King James Translation is most definitely not one of them. It earnestly endeavours to obscure the sexually explicit areas -- as one would expect from the Elizabethan period in which it was written.

The Bible contains an amount of blood and gore that clearly exceeds the necessities of war. In numerous places, God allegedly ordered the victorious Israelites to murder children, babies, and women -- including pregnant women. Examples are found in Joshua 10, 11 and Ezekiel 9. This leads one to wonder how God could be opposed to capital punishment and abortion if he ordered the mass-murder of pregnant women on numerous occasions? Occasionally, some of the vanquished were allowed to live. In Numbers 31, the Lord allegedly tells the victorious Moses to kill everyone -- except for one group. Want to take a guess which one? If you guessed: 'virgin females', congratulations.

For further reading, J. Ashleigh Burke's book Sex and Obscenity in the Bible (J. A. B. Press, Houston, Texas) provides a compendium of the worst in the Bible -- or, for some tastes, the best in the Bible.

If one takes the Bible literally, Earth and the universe are about 6000 years old. According to some Bible scholars, the creation of everything in the universe supposedly took place during the better part of a week in 4004 BC. If one shows a 200 million year old fossil to a Bible zealot, he or she won't be phased in the least. One Bible zealot [a.k.a. Bible-thumper] told me that "Fossils were artificially aged by God to fool nonbelievers into believing that Earth is much older than the Bible says -- so that nonbelievers would conclude that not every word in the Bible is absolutely true." I suppose its a bit like Catch-22. In Revelations 7:1, the Bible refers to the "four corners" of the Earth. Since spheres do not have corners, and rectangles do, if one takes the Bible literally, the Earth is flat. The Amish still believe that Earth is flat.

A favorite retort of Bible-thumpers is that "If you don't believe all of it, you can't believe any of it." It's all or nothing. But why should we reject an entire book only because it contains some fairly-obvious trivial errors?

Tampering and Inconsistencies

Bible credibility depends largely on source book reliability. Few reliable source books exist. The only one is probably the Torah -- which comprises the first five books of the Old Testament. The Four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) in the New Testament deal principally with the three year lecture tour of a teacher and events which closely followed this teacher's execution. However, the Four Gospels were probably not written down until several decades after the events described. The disciple John's Book of Revelation was probably not written until approximately 90CE. Only two (Matthew and John) of the four books were attributed to members of the original disciples. The original books do not exist. The King James Bible (1611) is revered by many Christians as a benchmark. However, it's New Testament translation was based on a Greek book that was written during the 1500s.

Bible tampering is not an improbability. By looking for inconsistencies, one may deduce where tampering may have occurred. In the New Testament's book of Matthew, in Chapters 5 and 6, the "Son of man" seems to be saying that holy men and organized religions are intrinsically corrupt. However, in Chapter 16 of Matthew, he gives the official seal of approval to yet another large, organized religion. Yet in Chapter 18, the Son of man gives the green light to religious gatherings in his name of only two or three people.

The core act of worship, Eucharist [thanksgiving] in Christian churches was, according to Mark, in Chapter 14, instituted at the "Last Supper" during Jewish Passover. The year was c.29. Bread and wine were allegedly consecrated and consumed to commemorate the impending death of the Son of man. The commemoration of this event provides the major obligation to compel modern Christians to attend church. However, Mark did not attend the Last Supper. One who did attend was the disciple John. He reports on this event without mentioning any reference to wine and bread as having special properties. Neither the Gospel of Thomas, Didache: 9-10 (2nd century) or the Q Gospel mention anything about ritual consumption of wine and bread. Is it likely that these authors of early Christian writings, including words attributed to one of the 12 original disciples, would forget to mention an event that forms the core of present day Christian belief?

Another inconsistency involves remittance/absolution/forgiveness of sin. In the Sermon on the Mount, the Son of man states that forgiveness of sin depends on forgiving the sins of others -- a situation that evaporates the power supply of holy men. Yet at John, 20: 23--within a few hundred words of the end of the Four Gospels -- the Son of man allegedly reverses himself 180º and the power to absolve sins is turned over to holy men. This strange twist is not surprising when one realizes that the book of John was exclusively in the hands of holy men for many centuries. The opportunity and the motivation for making certain adjustments was certainly there.

History Adjustment

"Oh what a tangled web we weave when at first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

"I am the truth" - attributed to the 'Son of man' {John 14:6}.

The Adjuster License

"Take it as a rule, the nearer a nation dwells to the Roman Curia, the less religion it has." -- Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527) {The Roman Curia is the central apparatus that governs the Roman church.}

Early on, the hierarchy of the Roman church began to make changes in the belief system. In the 4th century, the hierarchy adopted the first paganesque element -- the multiple-personality deity. Ritual cannibalistic sacrifice soon followed. The organization continued to make changes. Many of these changes appear to be somewhat less than altruistic since they seem to enhance control over the laity. By the 13th century, the organization was beginning to resemble the aspects of organized religion that were extensively criticized by the Son of man during his lecture tour. However, this was virtually unknown because the church would not publish the New Testament in a language other than Latin -- a language that few people outside the church hierarchy could understand. Another factor was that books were in short supply because the only means of duplication was hand copying. In the early 1400s, a book cost roughly as much as a small farm with a house and barn.

By the 1500s, the problems with the Roman church were beyond self-repair. As a result, Martin Luther (1483-1546), a priest who only wanted the church to clean up its act, unintentionally launched the damned competition -- Protestantism -- in 1517. This era is known as the Reformation. Largely due to the shock of this schism, the Roman church was goaded into making some sorely needed reforms during an upheaval that is known as the Counter Reformation.

Meanwhile, Johannes Gutenberg (1400?-1468?) invented movable type. For the first time, books could be reproduced in great quantities at affordable prices. In 1534, Martin Luther published the New Testament in German, a language that, for the first time, many lay people could read and understand. Thanks to Gutenberg, it was widely available at a price people could afford.

Luther's New Testament was a real eye-opener. Readers could see that there were discrepancies between what the Son of man reportedly taught during his lecture tour and what the Roman church hierarchy was currently teaching. Since the hierarchy wasn't about to admit that there might have been just a tad of tampering going on, they needed to come up with something that would seemingly validate their adjustments -- a.k.a. "Traditions."

In 1545, the church hierarchy announced that God had granted them a sort of Adjuster License (author's term). This license was not only handy for making future adjustments, it retroactively covered the plethora of prior adjustments. The hierarchy claimed that their license was based on Scripture. More precisely, their claim was based on a novel and rather imaginative interpretation of two similar passages in Matthew. {16:19 and 18:18} There were few overt skeptics at the time since those who openly questioned the hierarchy's teaching were in imminent danger of being barbecued at the stake. Those who read the Bible were also subject to incineration by God's Holy Church.

The pace of changes in Tradition picked up after the announcement of the Adjuster License. In 1546 and 1547, the hierarchy made a series of changes that further enhanced their control over the laity. In 1546, the hierarchy used the Adjuster License for adding books to their version of the Bible. Adding to the Bible may sound pretty cheeky. However, the Adjuster License was up to the task since it allegedly made the hierarchy's adjustments equal to anything that had come from the mouth of Christianity's founder. The Adjuster License was capable of even more amazing feats. + Hang onto your hats, folks! The hierarchy used their Adjuster License to add a few years to the life of Pope Leo IV. Even though he originally died c.852, after the miraculous Holy power of the Adjuster License was brought to bear, Leo died in 855. Whether or not a temporary resurrection was involved remains a divine mystery. However, it seems pretty likely that Leo was pleased with the bonus years no matter how he came by them. This miracle is covered in the section titled 'The Female Pope'.

Thanks again to their Adjuster License, when the hierarchy authorized buying and selling black slaves from Africa in the 16th century, it was supposedly as good as if the Son of man had given black slavery his personal stamp of approval during his lecture tour.

When I was a child, my parents took me to see the Sequoia redwood trees in Sequoia National Park. Over the years, I have returned to see the same trees. These approximately 2500 year old giants have not changed perceptibly during my lifetime. Since they change so slowly, some people might conclude that adult Sequoia trees do not change. Faithful Roman Catholics place great stock in their "perennial Tradition." Historian John E. E. Acton made the following observation:

"Unlearned in history, they allow themselves to be governed by the Unknown Past."

Thanks in large part to Luther's Reformation movement, the Roman church improved considerably during its Counter Reformation. After the Reformation and the Counter Reformation, lay Catholics were treated better than lay Lutherans. When German peasants, who were seeking basic human rights, revolted against a number of despotic German princes (1524-1526), Martin Luther sided with the despots. As a result, Luther lost many of his original supporters. Ironically, as his power and influence grew, Luther became more and more bullheaded and dogmatic -- like the people he had criticized in Rome. Luther had other problems. He was a misogynist and a pathological anti-Semite. Luther -- like his hero St. Augustine -- was repulsed by sexuality. Luther had a bent for violence and a strong belief in witchcraft.

The Ends of the World

The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc., headquartered in Brooklyn, is the controlling organization behind the Jehovah's Witnesses [JWs]--the persistent folks who seem to have a knack for ringing doorbells at inappropriate moments and proclaiming the "good news" to whoever opens the door. Most of the people I have talked with about the JWs seem to feel that the good news is when the JWs leave the premises.

JWs ring doorbells to promote the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. JWs are well trained and highly motivated to seek proselytes. One motivation is fear. If JWs don't meet the Society's standards for proselytizing, they can be excommunicated. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society calls this disfellowshipping. Having been disfellowshipped not only supposedly results in considerable unpleasantness in the hereafter, it produces immediate unpleasantness in the here and now. After being disfellowshipped, all other JWs are never allowed to speak to that person again. Typically, this means that the disfellowshipped person's family and friends become off-limits. I believe that the threat of disfellowshipping is one of the keys to the JW elite's power over the JW laity.

JWs are inculcated with the idea that the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society is the only source of official information from God. When a president of the Society speaks, God is supposedly speaking through him. The first president of the Society, C. T. Russell, predicted that the 'end of the world'--a.k.a. Armageddon and Jesus Christ's second coming -- would commence in 1914. After 1914 fizzled, Russell claimed that the starting time was 1915. When 1915 fizzled, the starting time was changed to 1918. After the 1918 'end of the world' fizzled, Russell's presidency fizzled.

The next president, J. F. Rutherford, predicted that the 'end of the world' would begin in 1925. He died in 1942--shortly after proclaiming that the 'end of the world' was only months away. During Rutherford's presidency, a plush mansion was constructed in San Diego, California to provide suitable lodging for Moses, Abraham, Isaiah and other biblical VIPs.

In the 1960s, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society began professing that the 'end of the world'--number six if you're counting -- would commence in 1975. There were many articles in The Watchtower magazine that promoted 1975 as THE really big year. JWs were warned to prepare themselves for Armageddon. Since the society professed that to do otherwise would result in grave consequences, many faithful JWs sold their homes and businesses so that they could devote full time to ringing doorbells. After 1975 proved to be just another dud, the hierarchy shifted the blame for the bogus prediction on members of the laity. Even though many of today's JWs were members before 1975 and witnessed the post - 1975 cover-up and buck-passing, they faithfully continue to ring doorbells.

When I was in kindergarten, my mother told me Aesop's fable about the shepherd boy who falsely cried "wolf." As I recall, this occurred somewhat less than six times before the shepherd boy lost his credibility with the villagers.

The humorous aspect of Christian 'end of the world' predictions is that, following a dissertation on the subject of "false prophets" and the end of the world, the Son of man reportedly said "No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father." {Matthew 24:36} However, the JW laity would do well not to mention this to anyone in their sect. The JW hierarchy seems to be paranoid about criticism -- and forgiveness simply isn't in their vocabulary. During 1991, the JW hierarchy disfellowshipped 38,000 of the four million JWs. According to a study by one mental health facility in Australia, Aussie JWs have an incidence of diagnosed paranoia that is more than three times that of the general population.

The darkest side of the JWs is what they do to their children. When the hierarchy began predicting that the 'end of the world' was coming in the early part of this century, they presumed that it would be a waste of time for JW children to begin college since their college educations would presumably be terminated by the 'end of the world'. Ever since, JW children have generally been discouraged from attending college. The hierarchy seems to prefer that young people ring doorbells instead of furthering their educations. When a child reaches the age that the law allows (16 in California)--it is not uncommon for JW parents to pull their children out of school for the purpose of ringing doorbells full-time for the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.

If you would like to NOT have your doorbell rung by JWs, the next time they come around, try asking them this question: Can you name the years in which the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc. predicted that the 'end of the world' would take place? The answer is 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, 1942, and 1975.

The Question of Divorce

In Matthew 6: 32, the Son of man reportedly said that the only reason for divorce is adultery. However, before the 20th century, divorce among Christians was very much rarer than adultery. In England, during the entire 19th century, the number of divorces that were granted numbered only in the hundreds. The reason for this was probably a carry over of the influence of the Roman church. Divorce was illegal in Italy for the same reason until well into the 20th century. The church hierarchy has traditionally been highly opposed to divorce. The latest version of their Bible says the only reason for divorce is "unlawfulness." Curiously, many other translations use the word adultery or fornication. Obviously, true-believers must turn to the church hierarchy to find out what is meant by "unlawfulness." Extramarital heterosexual intercourse is not unlawful.

There is a way out of a Catholic marriage. For all practical purposes, it is a divorce -- but for some reason it goes by the official label of "Decree of Nullity."--i.e., an annulment. One may be granted even after many children have issued from a marriage. However, by accepted definition, if a marriage is annulled, it means the two people were never legally married to each other. Does this mean that children the Roman church solemnly legitimized suddenly become illegitimate when a Decree of Nullity is granted? Yes -- bastards all. Remember folks, "If you understand it, it is not God."

According to the teaching of the hierarchy, Marriage is one of the seven Holy sacraments. Another Sacrament is Holy Orders -- the priesthood. When a married Catholic male engages in sex with another male, the Sacrament of Marriage is automatically null and void. Under such a circumstance, a Decree of Nullity would be granted without hesitation. If a priest has sex with a married man, the Sacrament of Marriage is automatically nullified on the spot -- however, the priest's Sacrament of Holy Orders is somehow not nullified. Is this yet another one of those "divine mysteries"?

Latter Day Adjusters

Brigham Young was the Second Prophet of the LDS church.

On 1 April 1845 Brigham Young noted, "I have commenced revising the history of Joseph Smith at Brother [Willard] Richards' office; Elder Heber C. Kimball and George A. Smith were with me." The revision continued until 29 December. On 28 November, one entry said, "At the Historian's Office with Elder George A. Smith and revised 50 pages history."


"Joseph Smith," the founder, "Prophet, Seer and Revelator" of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints -- a.k.a. the Mormon church, was the son of Joseph Smith. Thus, the son's name is Joseph Smith, Junior. The largest and by far the most successful spin-off of his church refers to him as Joseph Smith -- the name of the prophet's father. To help resolve this contradiction, I located a photocopy of the founder's signature. It read "J. Smith, Jr."

A photocopy of the prophet's signature: A photocopy of prophet Smith. (from ''History of the Saint'', 1843)

I most certainly would not want to risk offending one of God's holy prophets by getting his name wrong. Henceforth, I will use this one's real name. Joseph Smith, Junior (1805 - 1844). He was unusually gifted in certain areas -- and remarkably inept in others. He was said to be an expert in the art of using a "seer-stone" to find buried treasure and translate "reformed Egyptian" documents. However, he was far from wealthy and there is no evidence that he ever found buried valuables. He claimed to be a master of ancient languages. Curiously, he never mastered English. He was a marvelous storyteller and he possessed a vivid imagination. He could take bits and pieces of information from what he had read and heard, and fabricate new stories. Joseph also had a talent for embellishment. He had a remarkable memory -- yet he had considerable difficulty remembering details of the original versions of his stories. When one of his stories didn't wash, Joseph was nimble in coming up with a slippery explanation to cloud the issue. He could take an apparent discrepancy and skillfully twist it around to his advantage. Joseph's slipperiness was evidenced in numerous court proceedings. Even through he was taken to court over twenty times, Joseph usually emerged unscathed. There were two notable exceptions. In October, 1837, he was tried by jury for violating the 1816 Ohio Banking Law. He was convicted and fined $1000 -- the equivalent of roughly $90,000 in today's money. Joseph was also semi-convicted once for fraud, partly due to his 'peepstone' activities. More on that, later.

Although his writing skills were poor, Joseph could dictate well -- leaving the syntax and grammar to others. His greatest gift was mass persuasion. Joseph could make miracles happen in the minds of men and women. Mass hypnosis is one way to describe what reportedly occurred. Ironically, the charisma of mass hypnosis almost invariably changes from a gift into a curse. The change occurs when the person who has the gift begins to believe his own shtik.

The Kingly Faculty

After visiting the prophet in Nauvoo, Illinois, John Quincy wrote that this man, more than almost any other he had ever met, was "best endowed with that kingly faculty which directs the feeble or confused souls who are looking for guidance." Such people were probably instrumental in creating Smith's prophet personality. Quincy was greatly impressed by Joseph's magnificent self-confidence -- a trait that, like Napoleon's, grew with his successes. Joseph was a man of immense personal charm. Shortly before his death, Joseph had himself crowned King, not unlike Napoleon. More on that, later.

Mormonism's Holiest Book

Joseph originally claimed that he translated the *Book of Mormon* (1830) from some golden plates that were loaned to him by an angel named Moroni. Over the years, the angel's name changed twice. Joseph finally settled on Moroni. By skillful self-promotion, Joseph gained a reputation as a prophet and an expert in translating ancient languages. In the First Edition, he inadvertently credited himself as the book's "Author." After this glitch was pointed out, he changed the credit to "Translator" in subsequent editions. The *Book of Mormon*, a.k.a. the "Golden Bible," was written when American English was this country's primary tongue -- yet its vocabulary and style is crudely similar to that in the 1611 King James Translation of the Bible. When it was suggested that these similarities were an artifice, Joseph was quick to come up with one of his slippery explanations. Joseph claimed that he translated into King James English instead of American English because he feared that otherwise people might ignore his important holy work.

There are many fallacious ideas in the *Book of Mormon* that were somewhat believable in the 1830s. Some examples are:

{note 'Alma' is a city of south-central Quebec, Canada, on the Saguenay River, not far from prophet Smith's home in upper New York.}

Much to the chagrin of Mormon archaeologists, genetic evidence indicates that ancient Americans came from three migrations out of Asia -- not the Middle East. There is not the faintest resemblance between Hebrew and any native American language.

Even though the Western Horse existed in the Ameriicas until about 10k years ago, no archeological evidence of pre-Colombian domesticated horses, elephants, donkeys, cattle, goats, sheep has ever been found in the Americas. Wheat, grapes, figs and domesticated barley are clearly Old World food crops. No evidence of them has ever been found in pre-Colombian ruins in the Americas. Curiously, important pre-Colombian New World food crops such as corn/maize, lima beans, tomatoes, and squash are not mentioned in the *Book of Mormon*.

Mormons widely believe that the *Book of Mormon* is so accurate that the Smithsonian routinely uses it to locate archeological sites. According to the Smithsonian:

"The *Book of Mormon* is a religious document and not a scientific guide. The Smithsonian Institution has never used it in archaeological research and any information that you have received to the contrary is incorrect. Accurate information about the Smithsonian's position is contained in the enclosed Statement Regarding the *Book of Mormon*, which was prepared to respond to the numerous inquiries that the Smithsonian receives on this topic. Because the Smithsonian regards the unauthorized use of its name to disseminate inaccurate information as unlawful, we would appreciate your assistance in providing us with the names of any individuals who are misusing the Smithsonian's name. Please address any correspondence to: Public Information Officer, Department of Anthropology, National Museum of Natural History. Smithsonian Institution, MRC 112, Washington, DC 20560

Prepared by: the Department of Anthropology, Smithsonian Institution

Statement regarding the *Book of Mormon*:

1. The Smithsonian Institution has never used the *Book of Mormon* in any way as a scientific guide. Smithsonian archaeologists see no direct connection between the archaeology of the New World and the subject matter of the book.

2. The physical type of the American Indian is basically Mongoloid, being most closely related to that of the peoples of eastern, central, and northeastern Asia. Archaeological evidence indicates that the ancestors of the present Indians came into the New World -- probably over a land bridge known to have existed in the Bering Strait region during the last Ice Age -- in a continuing series of small migrations beginning from about 25,000 to 30,000 years ago.

3. Present evidence indicates that the first people to reach this continent from the East were the Norsemen, who briefly visited the northeastern part of North America around 1000 A.D. and then settled in Greenland. There is no evidence to show that they reached Mexico or Central America.

4. None of the principal Old World domesticated food plants or animals (except the dog) occurred in the New World in pre- Colombian times. This is one of the main lines of evidence supporting the scientific premise that contacts with Old World civilizations, if they occurred, were of very little significance for the development of American Indian civilizations. American Indians had no wheat, barley, oats, millet, rice, cattle, pigs, chickens, horses, donkeys, or camels before 1492. (Camels and horses were in the Americas, along with the bison, mammoth, and mastodon, but all these animals became extinct around 10,000 B.C. at the time the early big game hunters traveled across the Americas.)

5. Iron, steel, glass, and silk were not used in the New World before 1492 (except for occasional use of unsmelted meteoric iron). Native copper was worked in various locations in pre- Colombian times, but true metallurgy was limited to southern Mexico and the Andean region, where its occurrence in late prehistoric times involved gold, silver, copper, and their alloys, but not iron.

6. There is a possibility that the spread of cultural traits across the Pacific to Mesoamerica and the northwestern coast of South America began several hundred years before the Christian era. However, any such inter-hemispheric contacts appear to have been the results of accidental voyages originating in eastern and southern Asia. It is by no means certain that even such contacts occurred with the ancient Egyptians, Hebrews, or other peoples of Western Asia and the Near East.

7. No reputable Egyptologist or other specialist on Old World archeology, and no expert on New World pre history, has discovered or confirmed any relationship between archeological remains in Mexico and archeological remains in Egypt.

8. Reports of findings of ancient Egyptian, Hebrew, and other Old World writings in the New World in pre-Colombian contexts have frequently appeared in newspapers, magazines and sensational books. None of these claims has stood up to examination by reputable scholars. No inscriptions using Old World forms of writing have been shown to have occurred in any part of the Americas before 1492 except for a few Norse rune stones which have been found in Greenland.

9. There are copies of the *Book of Mormon* in the library of the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution."

The *Book of Mormon* says that God rewards good people with "delightsome" white skin. To those who were in the middle of the bloody process of stealing land from native North Americans during the era of "Manifest Destiny," these divine revelations were welcome indeed. Mormonism got off to a quick start.

During the "translation" of the *Book of Mormon*, a copy of the characters allegedly seen by Smith on the golden plates was taken to Charles Anthon, a preeminent language expert at Colombia University, by one of Smith's friends, Martin Harris. Anthon told Harris that the writing was not "reformed Egyptian hieroglyphics" (as Smith claimed). However, Harris told Smith's followers that Charles Anthon had confirmed Smith's claim. The prophet's followers rejoiced at the good news. This was the scientific proof they needed that Joseph was genuine. Anthon was astounded when he learned that he had been deliberately misquoted by Mr. Harris. After the *Book of Mormon* was published, Anthon read it - and on February 17, 1834, he gave his opinion in writing. Anthon said that the *Book of Mormon* was either "a hoax upon the learned, or a scheme to cheat the farmer of his money." Mark Twain said that the *Book of Mormon* was "Chloroform (an outmoded anesthetic) in print." Curiously, one of the books in the *Book of Mormon* is named Ether -- another outmoded anesthetic.

The somewhat less-than-truthful Mr. Harris also claimed that he had actually seen the golden plates. Later, Harris changed his story to this: "In about three days I went into the woods to pray that I might see the plates. While praying I passed into a state of entrancement, and in that state I saw the angel and the plates." {Anthony Metcalf, *Ten Years Before the Mast*, n.d., microfilm copy, p. 70-71}.

The *Book of Mormon* is widely rumored to be a sure cure for even the most stubborn cases of insomnia. This rumor may be true. I found myself nodding off after reading but a few pages. It seems unlikely that I could finish reading the *Book of Mormon* without resorting to powerful stimulants. I find it curious that Mormons are not allowed to drink coffee -- the very sort of thing needed to help them get them through their holiest book.

Henry Caswell, an Episcopalian minister from a Saint Louis college, brought an ancient Greek book of psalms to prophet Smith -- who concluded that the book was a valuable dictionary of Egyptian hieroglyphics. Smith said that the character (the ornamented capital letter) at the beginning of each psalm was the Egyptian hieroglyphic -- and the text that followed it was the definition. When Caswell related the prophet's opinion to a group of educated Mormons, a Mormon doctor replied that: "Sometimes Mr. Smith speaks as a prophet and sometimes Mr. Smith speaks as a mere man. If he gave a wrong opinion respecting the book, he spoke as a mere man." {Three Days in Nauvoo, London, 1842, page 35}

Oliver Cowdery became Joseph Smith, Jr.'s personal secretary in April 1829. Cowdery, a former schoolmaster, had the English skills that the prophet lacked. Cowdery was instrumental in helping Smith produce the *Book of Mormon*. Cowdery later confessed to having been mystified as he watched Joseph freely "translate" the book without a golden plate ever having been in sight. The so-called translation bore a remarkable resemblance to the process of writing a book by dictation. Shortly before he died, Oliver Cowdery reportedly stated that the locked wooden box, which allegedly held the golden plates during the so-called "translation," was empty.

The actual "translation" process of the *Book of Mormon* was seemingly unusual. - - - "Joseph Smith would put the seer stone into a hat, and put his face in the hat, drawing it closely around his face to exclude the light; and in the darkness the spiritual light would shine. A piece of something resembling parchment would appear, and on that appeared the writing. One character at a time would appear, and under it was the interpretation in English. Brother Joseph would read off the English to Oliver Cowdery who was his principal scribe, and when it was written down and repeated to Brother Joseph to see if it was correct, then it would disappear, and another character with the interpretation would appear. Thus the Book of Mormon was translated by the gift and power of God, and not by any power of man." (David Whitmer, _Address to All Believers in Christ_, p. 12)

Prophet or Plagiarist?

Smith claimed that the *Book of Mormon* was written around 600 BC. However, the *Book of Mormon* somehow manages to paraphrase from parts of The New Testament that were written in the 1st century CE. In order to explain away this discrepancy, the church hierarchy decided that some parts of the *Book of Mormon* were written after 600 BC. However, in the *Book of Mormon*, Helaman 5:31 and Alma 19:6 appear to paraphrase "clouds of darkness overshadowing the land" from the first paragraph of the dedication/preface (1611) to the King James Bible. There are instances where forgeries by Christian scribes that appear in the King James version of the Bible -- also appear in the *Book of Mormon*. Two examples are: 1 John 5:7 which appears in 3 Nephi 11:27,36 and Mark 16:16 which appears in 3 Nephi 11:33-34. There are instances where mistranslations in the King James Version of the Bible are copied over into the *Book of Mormon*: Isaiah 4:5 and 2 Nephi 14:5 refer to a "defense". It should read "canopy." Isaiah 5:25 and 2 Nephi 15:25 refer to the word "torn" -- which should read "refuse." In addition to borrowing from the Bible, Smith appears to have lifted story ideas for the *Book of Mormon* from Masonic literature, newspaper stories, family stories his mother told him, and three books -- Ethan Smith's View of the Hebrews (1825), James Adair's, A History of the American Indians (1775) and Josiah Priest's *The Wonders of Nature and Providence* (1824). Adair tried to prove that American Indians had descended from the ancient Israelites. This theme is also found in the *Book of Mormon*. On pages 377-378 of Adair's book, there are a series of phrases describing Indian fortifications that are virtually identical to the phrases which describe the construction of defensive forts in Alma 48-50 and 53. Mormon church historian, B. H. Roberts, found 18 parallels between *View of the Hebrews*and the *Book of Mormon*. Roberts wrote two manuscripts about the subject. The manuscripts were suppressed for many years by the church. Eventually, the manuscripts were published by the University of Illinois Press in Studies of the *Book of Mormon*. Roberts wrote: "The material in Ethan Smith's book is of a character and a quantity to make a ground plan for the *Book of Mormon*" "Can such numerous and startling points of resemblance and suggestive contact be merely coincidence?" {pages 240 and 242} "If from all that has gone before in Part 1, the view be taken that the *Book of Mormon* is merely of human origin if it be assumed that he is the author of it, then it could be said there is much internal evidence in the book itself to sustain such a view." "In the first place there is a certain lack of perspective in the things the book relates as history that points quite clearly to an undeveloped mind as their origin. The narrative proceeds in characteristic disregard of conditions necessary to its reasonableness, as if it were a tale told by a child, with utter disregard for consistency." {Roberts, B.H. Studies of the Book of Mormon., page 251}

Smith claimed to translate another ancient book -- the *Book of Abraham*. He claimed that he based the translation on ancient Egyptian papyrus scrolls that came into his possession. Smith's translation was no less than extraordinary. Less than four lines of Egyptian hieroglyphs were seemingly translated into over 2000 English words. Several lines in the book supply the supposedly divine justification for the Mormon church's long history of discrimination against persons with African ancestry. However, since no one could read Egyptian in those days, the *Book of Abraham* was safe from scholarly scrutiny. This situation was about to change.

The Rosetta Stone was discovered in Rosetta, Egypt in 1799. Although no one realized it at the time it was discovered, the Rosetta Stone would eventually provide the long sought after key to deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphic writing. The Rosetta Stone was an ancient tri-lingual public bulletin board written in Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphic and a simplified form of ancient Egyptian hieratic writing known as demotic. The Rosetta Stone was deciphered by , Jean François Champollion. After his ''Grammar'' was published in London in 1837, Egyptologists began translating Egyptian documents. When the papyrus original upon which the *Book of Abraham* was professedly based, was translated it turned out to be ordinary funereal records and the "Breathing Permit" for a fellow named Hôr. At least eight Egyptologists have concluded that the *Book of Abraham* bears no relationship to the original document upon which Smith said it was based. Defenders of the faith are currently claiming that Smith used 'other' papyri that are no longer in existence. . . The Mormon church hierarchy has been somewhat less than eager to discuss the *Book of Abraham*.

Joseph, jr. and Hyrum Smith became a Masons. Joseph rose to the "sublime " (highest) degree of Freemasonry on March 16, 1842. Two months later he introduced the temple endowment ceremonies, which were rather similar to Masonic rituals, using the same secret grips, blood oaths, tokens, penalties, and conversation at a veil. Smith also copied Masonic costumes, hand signals, and passwords. The Mormon symbols of the clasped hands, compass, builders-square, and the all-seeing eye were lifted from Freemasonry. To explain away his too-obvious plagiarisms, Joseph said that the real source of the rituals and symbols was divine. Since the best defence is a good offence, Joseph claimed that the Masons had distorted many of the sacred rituals -- a gravely serious error which he had been very careful to avoid. When Masons got wind of this ruse they were reportedly not amused.

Before a Mason learns the secret sacred rituals, he takes an oath that implies cutting the throat of those who reveal the rituals. When Joseph became a Mason, he swore this oath and made the required gesture of cutting the throat. Joseph unabashedly copied even this part of the Masonic ritual. Now that's real chutzpah --and/or fatal foolishness. Symbolized cutting of the throat was part of Mormon ritual until it was dropped without explanation in 1990.

Some members of the mob that assassinated Joseph Smith, Jr. were rumored to be members of local Masonic lodges. Even though Joseph took the liberty of breaking the oath he took not to reveal the Masonic rituals, the current Mormon hierarchy takes a dim view of any Mormon who follows Smith's example. Deborah Laake, in her book *Secret Ceremonies*, revealed what transpires during the "nutty" Mormon ritual by which marriages are supposedly "sealed through eternity." In April of 1993 she was excommunicated from the Mormon church. Miss Laake welcomed the excommunication as "free publicity" for her book. *Secret Ceremonies* made the New York Times best seller list.

Joseph claimed that God "spake" to him in King James English. Apparently, God is an Elizabethan buff. This leads one to wonder what language God spoke before King James English existed? In his original handwritten account of the first time that the Lord "spake" to him when he was 16 years old, Joseph Smith, Jr. said that one personage was revealed to him. This was an oversight since there was supposed to be the Father and the Son. Subsequently, Joseph said that he saw two personages. This was the version that appeared in print. Over the years, Joseph gave three different accounts of his first encounter with "the Lord." In one of these accounts, he claimed to be younger.

Other organized religions use the King James English gimmick with remarkable success. The Anglican church//Church of England//Episcopal church probably does it best. Even Roman Catholicism has taken to using some King James English. Verily I say unto you, if thou seeketh sheep for fleecing, take heed that ye neither speaketh nor writeth in their common tongue.

The Acid Test

Not everyone believed Joseph Smith, Jr.'s account of the golden plates. Three people with inquiring minds decided that they would "discover" some ancient-looking plates and see what transpired. An alloy of copper was used to make six bell-shaped plates. Acid was used to etch writing into the plates. The characters used in the writing were modeled after those on the lid of an Oriental tea box. The acid-etched plates were aged chemically, bound with a strap of rusted iron and buried, along with some old Indian bones in an Indian burial mound near Kinderhook, Illinois. One of the wily fake-plate makers, Robert Wiley, spread the story that he had dreamed of buried plates and their location for three nights in succession. The plates were unearthed in the presence of two Mormons -- who pleaded for permission to take the seemingly ancient plates to prophet Smith. Permission was reluctantly granted.

There was a time when Joseph Smith, Jr. would have been able to say that he was not familiar with the language on the Kinderhook Plates. However, he was now a widely respected prophet with a sizable dominion. Joseph's reality had slowly changed.

The world has seen many charismatic leaders who came to the consequential turning point of accepting as reality that which they wished reality to be.

On Monday, May 1, 1843, Joseph Smith, Jr. made the following statement about the Kinderhook Plates:

"The plates contain the history of the person with which they were found. He was a descendant of Ham, through the loins of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, and that he received his kingdom from the Ruler of Heaven and earth."

The Prophet, Seer and Revelator was murdered before he could publish a complete translation of the plates. If he had done so, the folks who manufactured the plates were planning to publish a book of their own describing how they pulled it off. The Kinderhook Plates were eventually sold to a Saint Louis museum. One of the six Kinderhook Plates is still in existence. According to metallurgical analysis, the composition of the copper alloy is consistent with that produced in the United States in the 1840s. The acid-etched characters have the appearance of doodles.

The Expert Linguist

In The Voice of Truth (1844), pages 16-17, we find an example of the prophet Smith's linguistic prowess. What follows is his "Appeal to the Freemen of the State of Vermont, the 'Brave Green Mountain Boys,' and Honest Men." Here the prophet quotes from seventeen languages:

"Were I a Chaldean I would exclaim: Keed'nauh ta-meroon le hoam elauhayauh dey-ahemayaua veh aur'kau lau gnaubadoo, yabadoo ma-ar'gnau comeen tehoat sheamyauh allah. (Thus shall you say to them: The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, they shall perish from the earth, and from these heavens.) An Egyptian, Su-e-eh-ni. (What other persons are those?) A Grecian, Diabolos bssileuei. (The Devil reigns.) A Frenchman, Messieurs sans Dieu. (Gentlemen without God.) A Turk, Ain shems. (The fountain of light.) A German, sie sind unferstandig! (What consummate ignorance!) A Syrian, Zaubok! (Sacrifice!) 'A Spaniard, II sabio muda conscio, il nescio no. (A wise man reflects, a fool does not.) A Samaritan: Saunau! (0 stranger!) An Italian: Oh tempa! oh diffidanza! (0 the times! 0 the diffidence!) A Hebrew: Ahtau ail rauey. (God: see me.) A Dane: Hvad tidende! (What tidings!) A Saxon, Hwaet riht! (What right!) A Swede: Hvad skilia! (What skill!) A Polander: Nay-yen-shoo bah pon na Jesu Christus. (Blessed is the name of Jesus Christ.) A western Indian: She-mokah she-mo-keb teb ough-ne-gab. (The white man. 0 the white man, he very uncertain.) A Roman: Procul, 0 procul este profani! (Be off, be off you profane!) But as I am I will only add; when the wicked rule the people mourn." -- Joseph Smith, Jr..

Sexual Salvation and Celestial Copulation

According to Mormonism, in the highest level of Heaven -- the Celestial Kingdom -- women qualify for admission by having been married in the earthly "sealed through eternity" Mormon temple wedding ceremony. In order for a Mormon woman to be admitted to the Celestial Kingdom, she must know her secret name, the secret handshake, the secret "tokens" and the secret "penalties" that she learned in her temple wedding ceremony. For a woman, admission to Mormon Heaven has nothing to do with ethical behaviour, charity or forgiveness. Deborah Laake compares the Celestial Kingdom to a "tree fort" run by someone named God and his little pals. Without the secret stuff, girls are not allowed into the boy's tree fort. As previously mentioned, the Celestial Kingdom consists of millions of Mormon males living on an Earth-like planet having sex with a multitude of receptive women. However, the Celestial Kingdom appears to be at odds with the Bible. In Matthew 22, the Son of man is presented with a hypothetical situation where a successively widowed woman successively marries seven brothers from a family with a high rate of male mortality. The hypothetical question is: which one of the seven brothers is she going to be with in the hereafter? The Son of man reportedly replied that …"in the resurrection people neither marry nor are given in marriage"…. I asked a Mormon inculcator about this matter. He said there was no contradiction because temple marriages in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are not specifically mentioned in Matthew 22. Therefore, what was said applies only to non-temple marriages.

Naturally, there are bound to be some Mormon temple marriages that don't quite work out. When this happens, there is a problem because such marriages are supposedly sealed for eternity. To unforever a sealed for eternity marriage, the Mormon church can grant a Cancellation of Sealing -- much like the Roman church's Decree of Nullity -- so that divorced persons can remarry forever again. Having a sealed forever marriage unsealed forever is a relatively simple thing. A divorced Mormon male is typically remarried in a Mormon temple within one year of the divorce. Even though her previous marriage received an official cancellation -- and her ex-husband has already remarried forever in the temple -- a divorced Mormon woman typically can not remarry in a temple without additional, lengthy, highly-intimate interrogation by the men who run the church. According to Deborah Laake, during her many interrogations, the hierarchy's main area of concern was whether or not she was having sex with a non-Mormon male. Ms. Laake said that the subject of "mouthing" (cunnilingus) was also brought up by her interrogators.


Mormon children are taught that the early Mormons and prophet Smith were despised and persecuted for religious reasons. It's true that early Mormons were despised -- but for reasons that had little to do with freedom of religion. Examples:

Some Mormon males, including prophet Smith, were prolific womanizers.

Smith used ripoffs of secret Masonic property in the Mormon temple. The symbols Smith used on Mormon underwear / "Temple Garments" were copied from Masonry. {Contrast-enhanced photograph of ripoffs of Masonic compass and square symbols on Mormon underwear} Smith also ripped off secret grips, "tokens" and "penalities" from Masonry.

Under supposedly divine orders revealed to prophet Smith, an army of Mormons once tried to capture Independence, Missouri by force of arms. However, when the attacking Mormon army learned they were heading into a cholera epidemic, they beat a hasty retreat.

Three months before he was assassinated, Joseph Smith, Jr. had himself secretly crowned King -- clearly an act of megalomania. The coronation was witnessed by 50 people - a.k.a. the 'Council of Fifty'. Smith was rather obviously attempting to set up a theocracy -- the very thing that many immigrants from Europe had fled from and what they probably feared most.

Like the Roman church, the Mormon church operated under a code of theocratic ethics that took precedent over civil law. The early Mormon church engaged in counterfeiting, fraud and public denials of actual events.

The Mormon church / "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints" claimed to be Christian -- even though it had vastly different beliefs. For example, the church teaches that Satan is Jesus' brother -- and that God was once a man who earned his promotion by celestial impregnation.

Under Smith's direction, the Danites, a secret group of 800 to 1,000 Mormon men burned and stole from non-Mormons. The Danites used physical attack, assassination and castration to control fellow Mormons. The Danites bribed government officials and assassinated anti-Mormons. Such practices seemingly continued after prophet Smith was assassinated.

Smith's militia destroyed a newspaper's printing press because it printed embarrassing information and questions about prophet Smith.. This was the single act that ignited anti-Mormon sentiment which led to Smith's assassination and the forced eviction of Mormons.

Saintly Swingers

Joseph Smith, Jr. had many so-called wives. This was hardly the case in the beginning. The *Book of Mormon*, in Jacob, says:

"Hearken to the word of the Lord: For there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife; and concubines he shall have none." "Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord." {Jacob 2:22-23. This was contradicted by Smith in Doctrine and Covenants, 132:38. See also Jacob 3:5}

That which was initially forbidden by, and abominable to, "the Lord" would soon become a tenet of the faith for three generations of Mormons.

Throughout history there has never been a shortage of women who are attracted to powerful men. As the power of prophet Smith increased, he became increasingly attractive to women. A prime example was the beautiful and talented poetess, Eliza Snow, who had her own bedroom on the second floor of the Smith's home, next to Joseph's bedroom. To obfuscate his sexual excesses, Smith devised a cover. After another seemingly convenient divine revelation from God, "plural marriage" was added to the tenets of Mormonism. Plural marriage proved to be very popular with some Mormon males.

The term plural marriage was a euphemism for polygamy -- a most revulsive word in 19th century America. However, "plural marriage" was far worse than mere polygamy. In addition to allowing a man to have more than one wife, plural marriage allowed him to "marry" married women. It was claimed that such wives were only "spiritual wives"-- and that no sex was involved. However, plural marriage to so-called "spiritual wives" was actually a license to excuse sex between married persons who were not legally married to each other. Plural marriage was clearly destructive to the institution of marriage. During the last year of his life, Joseph Smith, Jr. seems to have become aware of the monster he created when he added plural marriage to Mormonism. However, the otherwise powerful prophet was powerless to stop the monster he created. The monster was about to destroy the prophet -- ironically, it was the only event that could save Mormonism from failure.

Promiscuity has never been widely acceptable behaviour for religious leaders in the United States. This was especially true in the 19th century. During the 1840s, there were persistent rumors in and around Nauvoo, Illinois that a certain prophet was engaging in unprophetlike behaviour. A local newspaper, the Nauvoo Expositor, was founded by William Law and Robert Foster -- Mormons who had become disenchanted by plural marriage, by Smith's convenient divine revelations, and by Smith's womanizing. . William Law's wife, Sarah, claimed that she had been wooed by the prophet.

After word leaked out that Smith had himself secretly crowned King, Foster and Law knew that their worst suspicions about the prophet were true. The Nauvoo Expositor assigned a full-time newspaper reporter to follow prophet Smith on his many mostly-nocturnal visits with local women.

Since Mormons were more likely to listen to fellow Mormons than to outsiders, the Nauvoo Expositor's probing but restrained editorials by William Law and Sylvester Emmons posed a far more serious danger to the prophet's credibility than editorials in non-Mormon newspapers. Throughout the newspaper editorial battles, Smith steadfastly denied that polygamy existed in his church -- something that virtually every Mormon in Nauvoo knew was a lie. The newspaper battles revealed to all that the otherwise skillful prophet could not deal effectively with skillful criticism.

It was rumored that the prophet's assassination team was looking for William Law -- so he began taking precautions. Lieutenant General Smith's followers wrecked the Nauvoo Expositor's printing press, pied the type, and burned every issue of the newspaper they could find. This crime angered many people. The Warsaw Signal newspaper printed an inflammatory editorial by Robert Foster that resulted in widespread lynch-talk. Subsequently, Joseph and his older brother Hyrum were assassinated by a mob.

The Mormon hierarchy currently admits that the prophet had about two dozen "spiritual" wives -- but they contend that he did not have sexual relations with them. This is not supported by historical evidence. Fawn M. Brodie, a professor of history at UCLA, researched the subject of Mormon marital practices for her book *No Man Knows My History*… . Ms. Brodie documented 48 Mrs. Joseph Smith, Jr.s. Many of these women were lawfully married to other men at the time when they unlawfully married the prophet. Most of these so-called marriages were performed in secret -- apparently because they were illegal. The prophet married five pairs of sisters. During the last two dozen months of his life, Joseph married about two dozen women. .

Martyrdom is a wondrous Bon Ami to otherwise tarnished credibility. Martyrdom saved John F. Kennedy, Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. and Joseph Smith, Jr. from the consequences of womanizing. On the 10th of July 1844, James Gordon Bennett, editor of the New York Herald, wrote

"Instead of sealing the fate of Mormonism, we are now rather inclined to believe that this revolting transaction may give only additional and increased strength to that sect. Joe and his brother will be regarded as martyrs to their faith, and but little knowledge of human nature and the history of the past is necessary to inform us of the fact that violence, oppression, and bloodshed strengthen instead of subduing fanaticism."

After Joseph was killed in the gunfight at the Carthage, Illinois jail, Mormons were violently forced out. Most of them migrated to the Utah Territory under the business-savvy leadership of Brigham Young. A smaller group settled in Missouri. The Missouri Mormons eventually came under the leadership of Joseph Smith Junior's son, Joseph Smith III. When Joseph Smith III was 11 years old, he appeared during a sermon with his father who reportedly said:

"I have often been asked who will succeed me as the prophet to the church. My son Joseph will be your next prophet."

James Whitehead, the prophet's secretary was one of numerous eyewitnesses who heard the statement. The Utah version of the Mormon church still denies that prophet Smith made the statement.

The Mountain Meadows Massacre

After prophet Smith died with blazing 6-gun in hand at the Carthage, Illinois Jail, the followers of prophet Smith were persecuted and forced out of Illinois and Missouri. The majority of Mormons moved to Utah under the direction of Brigham Young, the new prophet. On the 10th day of September, 1857, a cold blooded massacre took place at Mountain Meadows in the Utah Territory. Mark Twain wrote about the Mountain Meadows Massacre in Roughing It.

Priests, Priestesses and Power

As has often been the case in religious organizations, there are men who can not tolerate allowing women even modest amounts of power. In the present day Mormon church, women can not receive any of the priesthood powers. However, there is evidence that Joseph Smith, Jr. gave women some priestly powers. In prophet Smith's private journal, he recorded that he told women they would possess priesthood privileges, gifts and blessings permitting them to heal the sick and cast out devils. After 1921, the church hierarchy started telling Mormon women that they could only enjoy the blessings of the priesthood through their husbands. 15 months after church historian and author D. Michael Quinn published an essay on this subject, he was barred from church archives and excommunicated from the Mormon church. Subsequently, Quinn wrote a book titled The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power. In December 1994, author and researcher Brent Metcalf was excommunicated from the church because he edited "New Approaches to the *Book of Mormon*", a collection of essays that question the historicity of the *Book of Mormon*. Between September 1993 and October 1994, seven high profile Mormons were excommunicated by the church hierarchy.

Impaired Reality

For her efforts in writing *No Man Knows My History*, professor Brodie was rewarded with rave reviews from the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune -- and excommunication from the Mormon church. When she was excommunicated, it was said that the reason for excommunicating her was not so much because of what she said in her book -- it was for the thoroughness of her research and documentation. It seems that Fawn Brodie's greatest sin was that she had left no path of plausible deniability for the all-male Mormon hierarchy.

In my opinion, one of the more important contributions of Fawn Brodie's book is that the Second Edition contains a plausible explanation for Joseph Smith, Jr.'s behaviour. Dr. Phyllis Greenacre studied the histories of a number of famous impostors. She concluded that the impostors were not simple liars. They were men who had an extraordinary conflict between reality -- and what they wished reality to be. David Koresh, the leader of the Branch Davidian cult, and Jim Jones the leader of the People's Temple in Jonestown, Guyana, appear to be examples of this phenomenon. Dr. Greenacre believes that the acting out of the impostor role is "largely an attempt to achieve a sense of reality and competence as a man." When a female true-believer flashed "bedroom eyes" at the powerful Mormon prophet -- it was confirmation of his male competence -- an offer he apparently could not refuse. Dr. Greenacre's opinions are supported by evidence other than what is known about prophet Smith's promiscuity.

When he was losing an argument, Smith had a bent for challenging his opponent to a wrestling match. When Smith wrestled, it was victory at any cost. Those who saw Smith wrestle, said he used vicious tactics. A number of men were injured wrestling Smith. According to the prophet, the strongest man in Nauvoo was himself.

What follows seems to be a description of Smith's prophet personality as well as the personality of a number of famous imposters. "The sense of reality is characterized by a peculiarly sharp, quick perceptiveness, extraordinarily immediate keenness and responsiveness, especially in the area or the imposture. The sense of reality is, however, impaired." [Phyllis Greenacre: "The Impostor" Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 27:359 - 382 (1958)]

Appendix A of the Second Edition of *No Man Knows My History* ; provides an example of the extraordinary means that church hierarchies are capable of using in their attempts to adjust history. On May 11, 1946, the Mormon hierarchy set out on a campaign to discredit Professor Brodie. A 1826 trial of Joseph Smith, Jr. was reported in the First Edition, along with copies of the court record. Smith was convicted by Justice Albert Neely in Bainbridge, New York. In their rebuttal to the First Edition of her book, the Mormon hierarchy claimed that, because no public record of the trial (pages 405-7) could be found, Fawn Brodie ['patently fabricated' the record of the trial and fraud conviction in an attempt to discredit God's prophet. Fawn Brodie, aided by three fellow historians, discovered that the missing pages were torn out by Miss Emily Pearsall from Salt Lake City, Utah, and that the 'patently fabricated' court record had been published in *Frazier's Magazine*, London, February, 1873. Two newspaper accounts of the trial were subsequently discovered.

The title of Fawn Brodie's book, *No Man Knows My History* is a quote. In one of his sermons, the prophet threw down a challenge to future biographers. He said:

"no man knows my history"

Many men and one woman wrote biographies of prophet Smith. Where all of the men had failed, the woman succeeded brilliantly. This was one prophecy that the prophet got right.

Contemporary Problems with Mormonism

The relatively high rates of suicide among married Mormon females and adolescent Mormon males deserves a closer look. The church hierarchy's long record of public denials of actual events, refusal to discard Mormonism's abracadabra magic, and attempts to adjust history discredits every Mormon. Like the problems with the Nixon White House, the problems with the Mormon hierarchy are likely to worsen. The fundamental problem seems to be the love of power and r-e-s-p-e-c-t.

The "Twelve Apostles" who elect the Mormon church president/prophet have no age for retirement. During the 19th century this was not a serious problem because average life expectancy was much shorter. Modern medicine has succeeded in prolonging the life of the human body but it has failed to extend the useful life of the human brain. Presently, one out of three people who reach the age of 65 will contract senile dementia or Alzheimer's. Thus, mental dysfunction often occurs before an Apostle dies. To make matters even worse, the best man for the job of president/prophet is not likely to get the job. The oldest member of the Apostles is automatically "elected." In 1971, word began leaking out that church President Joseph Fielding Smith was senile. Subsequent presidents have had the same problem. According to his grandson Stephen, church President, Ezra Taft Benson, was demented to the point of not being able to communicate for years. The ship had no captain. The hierarchy concealed the truth from the laity. In disgust, Stephen resigned his membership in the Mormon church. President Benson's body finally died in May 1994. Benson's replacement, the church's new "living prophet", Howard Hunter, 86, was barely living. He was so frail he had difficulty speaking. Hunter died within nine months. In April 1995, Gordon B. Hinckley, became the next prophet. He was 84 at the time. It seems clear that the Mormon church needs to change its election rules. In the Roman church no modern pope has ever become senile. Perhaps its the strawberries. More on the strawberries, later.

Yet another problem is the financial hardship brought about by the Mormon church hierarchy's four-billion+ dollar per year appetite for cash. For poor Mormons who occasionally need 100% of their disposable incomes to adequately feed their many children and pay unexpected medical bills, the hierarchy's 10% minimum take is unfairly burdensome.

The Sunny Side of Mormonism

The Mormon church has improved during the last century. The church is no longer engaged in counterfeiting money. The church's welfare system works. Joseph Smith, Jr. launched an innovative and appealing religion that discarded the Christian concept of a boring hereafter and promised a hereafter of earthly pleasures that included wealth, power, and multiple sex partners (for the men only). Although Joseph deluded many -- himself included, he deserves credit for motivating a group of people who contributed to the early development of the West. To their credit, Mormons are usually sincere, hard working, fairly well educated people. However, most Mormons are ignorant in one area -- the history of the Mormon church.

Sunstone from the Temple at Nauvoo, Illinois. (Quincy Historical Society)


Like the JWs, the Adventists have had their share of end of the world/second coming of Christ predictions. Adventist preacher William Miller proclaimed that the second coming would occur between 21 March 1843 and 21 March 1844. After nothing spectacular happened, Miller reset the date at 22 October 1844. Like the JWs, many Adventists sold their property in anticipation of the second coming. After the second coming became a second disappointment, the organization disintegrated and eventually formed into four branches -- one of which is the Branch Davidians. By far the largest branch is the Seventh-day Adventists. A church formed between 1844 and 1855 under the leadership of Joseph Bates, James White, and Ellen White. The Seventh-day Adventist church was formally organized in 1863. In 1980 there were more than 3.3 million members. The church's basic theology: belief in the second coming of Christ and the observance of the Saturday sabbath. The church promotes vegetarianism, operates schools and health care facilities.

The writings of Ellen White are claimed to have been divinely-inspired. Some of Ellen's divinely-inspired revelations were: masturbation causes nearsightedness and squinty eyes; pygmies [Baka people of the Iturbi forest in Africa] were the result of crossbreeding between chimpanzees and humans; wearing a wig causes mental illness. Ever hear the term "wigged out"? Early editions of books by Ellen White contained these divinely-inspired revelations. Contemporary editions of Ellen's books do not include such revelations.

According to a Ventura County Coroner's Report, during the evening of the 27th of November 1984, Ernest Lawerence King, a member of the Seventh-day Adventist hierarchy died at the age of 43 in the front yard of his mother's home in Thousand Oaks, California. Mr. King's body was discovered shortly after sunrise hanging from the bucket of a John Deere™ model 4010 backhoe. The diesel engine was idling. A homemade 14 foot long extension rod was connected to the bucket control lever on the backhoe. The handle end of the extension rod was found next to the body of the decedent. The Ventura County Coroner determined that death occurred during "erotic asphyxia"--a dangerous practice in which a ligature is placed around the neck to restrict blood flow to the brain during sexual activity. After New York's infamous Preppie Murder, the cause of death was determined to be erotic asphyxia. When the Adventist church hierarchy released a public statement about the death of Mr. King, the stated cause of death contradicted the cause of death in the Ventura County Coroner's report.

Mary Manipulation

Sometime around the fourth century, the Church of Rome began building a Marian theology, or Mariology, that is loosely based on the Son of man's mother. She is currently known as "Mary" to English speakers. Her real name was probably Maryan -- literally meaning "rebellion" in Aramaic -- the common language spoken in Israel in those days. Aramaic is still spoken by a few thousand people in an isolated part of Lebanon. Aramaic is also spoken by a tiny Jewish sect in Israel.

Most probably beginning with a 2nd century book titled Protoevangelium of Saint James, some holy men began to promote the idea that Mary is still a virgin -- even though this idea appears to be contradicted in several places in the New Testament section of the Bible.

Beginning around Matthew 13:54: the Son of man's family was described. His mother, Mary; his step-father, Joseph, a carpenter in Nazareth, Israel; his four brothers, James, Joses, Simon and Judas (not the infamous treasurer of the 12 disciples), and his 'married sisters' are mentioned. Could Mary still be a virgin after she additionally gave birth to four boys and at least two girls who were presumably fathered by Joseph the carpenter? At one time, the hierarchy claimed that this part of Matthew could be translated as "brothers and sisters," or as "cousins." Another theory held that the four brothers and married sisters were Joseph's children by a previous marriage. The hierarchy opted for "cousins"--possibly an attempt to resurrect Mary's virginity. While there are some languages that do not make the distinction between siblings and cousins, neither Aramaic nor Hebrew nor Greek is one of them. Clearly, the need was indicated for fabricating an explanation that was less flawed. Another explanation is that the "brothers and sisters" were brothers-in-faith and sisters-in-faith instead of siblings. However, that idea is not consistent with Luke 8 and Matthew 12 -- which makes it clear that the "brothers" were not brothers-in-faith. The "brothers" were sons of Mary, Joseph the carpenter's wife. Both passages convey the idea that the Son of man placed more value on following his teachings than he placed on being one of his four brothers or being his mother.

According to the New Testament, Mary was not part of the Son of man's lecture tour. When she showed up at one of his lectures, it was to warn her son about the increasing anger of the powerful Judaic holy men. However, the Son of man seemed to sense that there was no escape. This was the price he expected to pay for telling the truth about holy men. If his execution was part of a divine-plan, why was the so-called "Queen of Heaven" not privy to it?

In the year 431, the worship of Mary began. Over the centuries, Mary became increasingly significant. The adoration of Mary was added in 788. Mary became "Immaculate" in 1845. But her really big promotion came in 1950. Unless she lived well past the age of 110, Mary died and was buried in the 1st century. 19 centuries later, it was assumed -- because her gravestone could not be found -- that Mary was miraculously sucked into Heaven. This idea was professed in 1950 by Pope Pius XII. It is called the "Assumption." I can not think of a more appropriate name for it.

It seems curious that the pope who had no comment about the ongoing destruction of the Jews in the 1940s, would, less than ten years later, decree infallibly -- i.e., ex cathedra {literally "from the throne"} -- that a Jewess had been transported, body and soul, directly into Heaven.

In order to successfully adjust history, special equipment is needed. Perhaps the pope should get on the Divine Hotline and ask God to send him a Back To The Future type of time machine. With such a machine, it should be possible to go 19 centuries back into history and see to it that Joseph the carpenter lost his penis in a freak accident with a wood saw. Consequently, Mary and Joseph's six, or more, additional children would not have been born -- and Mary could have remained a virgin for the rest of her days on Earth, if she chose to do so. This would mean that the children of Joseph and Mary's children would not have been born and that their children would not have been born, on and on, up to the present. Literally, millions of lives could be erased by a Back To The Future type of time machine. If such a machine is ever put into service by a pope, a family on your block could vanish without trace if their genealogy led back to the children of Mary and Joseph. If yours truly has such a genealogical link, this book could suddenly vanish before your eyes.


Christianity is only one of many religions that utilize a mother-goddess and child. The religions of ancient Egypt, Rome, Israel, India, Scandinavia and Babylon also had a Madonna and child. When Jesuit missionaries brought Roman Catholicism to Tibet and China, they were surprised to find that the locals already had their own Madonna and child. Native North American mythology contained stories of divine impregnation of virgins long before the Christian invasion that began in 1492.

One of the reasons for the pervasive success of mother-goddesses may be in their ability to play on the powerful affection that most people have for their mothers. For those who had imperfect mothers, the perfect mother goddess fills a vacant childhood niche.

Mary in Mormonism

According to Mormon belief around the 1950s, God literally had sexual intercourse with Mary -- presumably in the "missionary-position." Since the Mormon church professes that God was once a man, their concept of God inseminating Mary in the conventional manner is hardly surprising.

The Virgin Business

For celibate males, the ideal female is one who never has sex. One step below her is the female who produces babies without taking pleasure in sex. Next comes the female who produces babies and supposedly sins by taking pleasure in sex. Below her is the prostitute who does not take pleasure in sex and uses contraception. The lowest type of female is the one who takes pleasure in sex, uses real contraception as she sees fit, and raises as many children as she feels she can reasonably manage.

The world's most powerful virgin cult is the one that has controlled the Roman church for roughly the last millennium of its existence. It seems appropriate to refer to this group of males as the Virgin Cult.

The Versatile Virgin

As previously mentioned, the Virgin Mary assists in absorbing religions that utilize a female deity. Pagans are converted from worshiping the old mother-goddess to worshiping the new mother-goddess -- whereupon they are supposedly saved from the eternal fires of Hell -- Amen. The Holy Virgin also helps to promote subordination within the organization. Without subordination, the power pyramid would crumble. For this reason, the hierarchy promotes the idea of a military-style pyramidal chain-of-command.

Here's the concept: If one wishes to take a request to the godfather, one might have a better chance for success by going through an intermediary. The hierarchy tells the laity that they should pray their "weak prayers" to the "Mother of God" {De Harbe's Catechism, page 319} who presumably turns those miserable weak prayers into powerful prayers that get results without fail. This concept contradicts what the Son of man reportedly said about prayer in his Sermon on the Mount -- i.e., there are no intermediaries.

On occasion, Mary has been helpful in dealing with problematic persons. When Attila the Hun (c. 406 - 453) was preparing to attack Rome in 452, Pope Leo I informed him that if he did so, the "Mother of God" would be offended. Attila did not fear males. He had personally dealt quite successfully with (dispatched) a number of them -- including a few who claimed to be gods. However, dealing with mothers was apparently not something that Attila felt comfortable with -- so he abandoned his preparations and departed.

Unauthorized Virgins

In 1991, in England, a 28 year old virgin and her physician announced that she was about to be artificially inseminated. Obviously, the result would be a virgin birth. The Roman church hierarchy lost no time in publicly expressing displeasure. Perhaps the rub had something to do with copyright infringement.

In 1953, Otto Preminger directed a motion picture titled The Moon is Blue, based on the play by F. Hugh Herbert. The Roman Catholic Legion of Decency fought long and hard to have one six-letter word removed from the script. The word was 'virgin'. Preminger refused to remove the offending word and The Moon is Blue was released uncut. The Moon is Blue was promptly condemned (rated "C") by the church.

Virgin Birth

The premise of conception without copulation may seem to be a comically ridiculous impossibility. However, what can be described as virgin births are occasionally seen by obstetricians in the United States. The obstetrician observes that a hymen is present during the pregnancy. {A hymen is not present in all females at birth.} Virgin mothers are usually girls in their early teens. When questioned by their obstetricians, they typically report that they engaged only in "heavy petting," during which they kept their panties on at all times -- due to fear of family reprisal and/or personal conviction.

Spermatozoa are incredibly tiny, good swimmers and they are especially plentiful in 16 to 19 year old males -- as in hundreds of millions per ejaculation. Spermatozoa are so small that they can swim through panty fabric with ease. Their next obstacle, swimming through the small natural opening in the average hymen is no problem.

The Immaculate Deceptions

Why is it important to promote the concept that Mary is still a virgin?

Mary is an important tool for sowing the seeds of guilt and shame in the minds of young children. These seeds are the main ingredient of a sophisticated guilt-bomb that will be detonated by the certain arrival of puberty.

Here's the concept: The Virgin Mary allegedly found complete favor with God because she was pure and she was without sin. If a child believes that Mary never participated in sex, and believes that Mary is pure and without sin, participating in sex is unmistakably suspect. Children easily accept this concept because they have not experienced puberty. Children tend to believe what they are told by key adult leaders when the concepts are reinforced by peer-group pressure.

Where did the sex-is-sinful concept come from?

Augustine (354 - 430) became a major influence in Christianity. The Christian hierarchy placed much importance on most of Augustine's line of reasoning. They rewarded him with sainthood. Augustine seems to be the father of the Virgin Cult.

In his youth, Augustine appears to have had an unusually high libido. Augustine had a series of toxic relationships with females that apparently left him bitterly disenchanted. Much is revealed in the quote from him in the section titled The Menstrual Excuse. ('Women should not be enlightened or educated in any way. They should be segregated because they are the cause of unholy erections in holy men.') Augustine was very probably a misogynist.

As is often the case with males in general, Augustine placed the blame for his grief with the opposite sex on sources other than himself. He concluded that one of these sources was "sin." Possibly because the serious grief in male/female relationships not infrequently begins after they begin having sex together, Augustine concluded that sin is an inseparable part of semen. If Augustine is correct, every newborn human being is automatically contaminated with sin. The Christian hierarchy bought the idea and the tradition of decontaminating newborn infants with water was added in the year 400. The concept of fetal contamination with sin is known as total hereditary depravity, or original sin. This concept ties in nicely with Christianity's conveniently erroneous translation of the Garden of Eden segment in Genesis. One result is feelings of unworthiness -- a terribly destructive source of emotional damage and an element of sadomasochism. Another result is sexual guilt and shame -- a factor in sexual dysfunction.

The fusion of sin with semen in the fourth century led to an eventual complication. It was said that the Virgin Mary had never been contaminated by semen -- but what about the conception of Mary? What if Mary's mother conceived Mary by way of supposedly sinful semen? The web was beginning to tangle. Thanks again to their Adjuster License, in 1845 the Virgin Cult enhanced Mary's status with the Immaculate Conception. Henceforth, Mary had not been conceived with sinful semen. Mary was now Immaculate. In February 1848, Mary reportedly appeared before a true-believer named Bernadette in Lourdes, France and confirmed, almost verbatim, Rome's adjustment of 1845. If Mary didn't bother to tell us that she was conceived without semen for 1700 years, could it have been all that important? It was Saint Augustine's opinion that it really didn't matter how Mary was conceived after God had already decided that she was pure enough to qualify for the job. The Roman church hierarchy considered Saint Augustine to be divinely-inspired -- yet they chose to ignore him on this matter. Augustine probably realized that the concept of immaculate conception was intrinsically problematic. What if Mary's maternal grandmother had been conceived with semen? What if Mary's maternal great grandmother had been conceived with semen?--on and on. A tangled web indeed!

Since virtually all children eventually conclude that they are the product of a sex act, subtle feelings of guilt and shame can result if a child is exposed to Mariology.

When a female who was inculcated by the Virgin Cult is having sex, the realization that her body is about to receive an injection of liquid sin may deter orgasm. The solution to this dilemma might be to use a condom -- but the Virgin Cult alleges that doing so is a horrible sin against God. All of the bases are covered. Guilt is guaranteed.

Thanks to Mariology and the concept of total hereditary depravity, choosing a life without sex to serve God's Holy Church as a nun, a sister or a priest becomes more attractive than would otherwise be the case. In this way, Mariology helps to recruit the inexpensive source of labor that is a crucial part of the system.

The concept of the holiness of male chastity is boosted by Saint Joseph. The canonization of this saint was unavoidable. Since the Virgin Cult restored Saint Mary's virginity after she had reportedly given birth to at least six children, it was only appropriate to reward Joseph the carpenter with sainthood for not having contaminated Mary with his sinful semen.

Pope Gregory the Great ruled from 590 to 604--a time when the last vestiges of paganism were disappearing in Rome. Before Gregory, the power of the Christian church was concentrated in Constantinople. Gregory consolidated the power of the church in Rome. Gregory promoted Augustine's ideas and expanded upon them. Gregory gave the Roman church what was indisputably the 'greatest power ever lodged in human hands'--as Rabbi Feinberg described it. Gregory decreed that:

Thanks to Gregory, it is not uncommon for a married female true-believer to attend church as often as she has sex. I discovered two cases where newly-married women began attending church on a daily basis.

……Back to the journey of the inculcated children.……

With the arrival of puberty, the seeds of sexual guilt germinate. Every time a teenage girl thinks those allegedly "impure thoughts" about boys, she is supposedly sinning. With the arrival of puberty, every time a boy thinks "impure thoughts" about girls, he is supposedly sinning. Boys are additionally shamed by the realization that their bodies have begun to manufacture liquid sin and they are helpless to stop its production or stop its emission during sleep.

Compulsive Behaviour Disorders

When Christianity's sex is bad message collides with the sex is good message from post pubescent sexual activity, shame and guilt result. The brain tries to compensate for shame and guilt by compelling certain behaviors. These are called compulsive behaviors. There are a wide range of compulsive behaviors. Some types of compulsive behaviour are innocuous. Attending church after each sex act is one example. At the other end of the spectrum are sociopathic and psychopathic compulsive behaviors -- examples of which are seen in the Boston Strangler case, the Hillside Strangler case in Los Angeles, the Golub murder case on Long Island, New York, the Jeffrey Dahmer case and the Night Stalker case in California. All of these perpetrators share a common denominator -- early childhood inculcation by the Roman church.

Some types of compulsive behaviour follow recognizable patterns. According to the PBS documentary series Frontline, when the L.A.P.D. was desperately trying to solve the Hillside Strangler case, a forensic expert from Germany traveled to Los Angeles to offer his suggestions to the L.A.P.D.'s Hillside Strangler Task Force. He reviewed the confidential evidence files. After studying the files for about two weeks, the forensic expert told the L.A.P.D. that, in his opinion, there were two stranglers. This came as a surprise since everyone on the Task Force was convinced that there was only one strangler. The forensic expert said that one perpetrator might be in his mid-twenties and the other perpetrator might be in his mid-thirties. Based on the types of injuries inflicted on the victims, the forensic expert predicted the perpetrators' ethnic and religious background. The Task Force joked among themselves about these seemingly outrageous conclusions. However, the forensic expert from Germany was correct on all counts.

Sexual guilt, and the resulting sexual inhibition, once provided a social benefit. Since human misery often results when humans bring children into the world that they are not prepared to care for, delaying sexual activity until after marriage probably produced a net social benefit before effective contraceptives were invented.

However, sexual guilt programing during childhood can lead to insidious problems during adulthood. A commonly used method of temporarily overcoming sexual inhibitions from childhood is the use of alcohol. Another method of overcoming sexual inhibition is by smoking the alkaloid form of cocaine -- more commonly known as crack or crack-cocaine. Females seem to be especially affected sexually by the use of this stimulant. Females who have never had an orgasm often find that they can have one by smoking crack-cocaine just before copulation or during copulation. For sexually-inhibited males, smoking crack-cocaine often produces a normal erection. These tidbits of information are somehow overlooked in official U.S. government "information" pamphlets about crack-cocaine. There are many people in our predominately Christianity-influenced society who need drugs in order to function sexually. Current estimates are that U.S. residents spend more than 120 million dollars a day on cocaine and crack-cocaine.

Sexual inhibition is perhaps a good thing for those who wish to remain faithful to a vow of chastity. For those who marry, sexual guilt causes sexual shame -- a bane which affects all of the members of a family.

"Shame-based parents beget shame-based children." - John Bradshaw

As Father Leo Booth says in When God Becomes A Drug:

"Dysfunction begets dysfunction."

Dr. Wilhelm Reich, the controversial Austrian psychoanalyst, said that 'the Roman Catholic church is responsible for perpetuating more nonsense about sex than any other organization in the world'. And what is the source of this nonsense? For about the last millennium, this largest and richest religious organization on Earth, has been largely controlled by sexually dysfunctional individuals, i.e., the Virgin Cult. As a result, the organization's learning institutions are ultimately controlled by sexually dysfunctional people whose mission is to instill their moral values in students. Teachers in such institutions who openly questioned these values have been fired.

Non-optional Celibacy

Before the year 1123, the vast majority of priests in what was then called the Church of Rome were not required to take a vow of celibacy. There were married priests and unmarried priests. Sons of priests were socially acceptable. Some of them became popes as well as real fathers. The disciple Peter, who was allegedly the first pope, was married. 11 of the Son of man's original 12 disciples were reportedly married. Nevertheless, in 1123, celibacy became the rule instead of an option. Additional restrictions on priestly sex were added at the Second Lateral Council in 1139. As a result of these changes, Ukrainian priests began switching over to Eastern Orthodoxy. To stem the flow of defections into the rival camp, the pope granted that Ukrainian priests in the Church of Rome could be married.

In the twelfth century, Peter Comestor wrote:

"The devil never harmed the church so much as when the church herself adopted the vow of celibacy."

The Roman church's struggles with the issue of sex can be traced to its very beginnings. Thanks in large part to Saint Augustine, sex began to take on a bad connotation in the fourth century. Over the centuries, the hierarchy continued to cultivate anti sex policies. One example can be seen on crucifixes. Roman Law dictated that no clothing be worn by the person being crucified. Thus, when he was crucified by Roman soldiers, the Son of man was surely as naked as a jay bird -- and yet his male equipment is always covered on crucifixes.

Christianity's anti sex attitude appears to be progressive. This trend can be seen in paintings of the Virgin Mary. In paintings of her from the 19th and early 20th centuries, Mary has normal adult female body characteristics. This Mary would probably wear a women's size 10 dress. The general trend has been a progressive de-emphasis of Mary's female equipment. In some contemporary paintings, Mary has the face of woman -- but her body appears to be pubescent. Contemporary Mary would likely shop for dresses in the Jr. Department. Examples of this phenomenon are shown in the Preface.

Virtually every invention produces good and bad results. When Pope Gregory's sex-is-sin concept was brought into the Church of Rome's belief system in the 6th century, church attendance probably increased. However, sex-is-sin created some sticky problems that would have been difficult for its inventors to have foreseen. Since sex and sin are so closely connected in the minds of female believers, the safest male for them to have sex with is someone who they believe is divinely authorized to facilitate forgiveness of sin -- i.e., a priest. When a woman succeeds in seducing a professedly celibate priest -- i.e., controlling one of her controllers, she has accomplished something extraordinary. A related factor may be the organization's pervasive negative attitude toward women. Since a woman's most precious asset -- female sexuality -- is treated with disdain by the Virgin Cult, seducing a priest can be fun for some -- and he very probably won't talk about it if he values his job. Another aspect is the attractiveness of power. Women have a propensity to be attracted to men who possess power -- and priests most certainly do -- at least in the minds of the faithful.

Not only did the vow of celibacy fail to address the root of the problem -- it helped to create another problem. When people repeatedly repress normal desires, abnormal desires may result. Abnormal desires often correlate with sociopathic behaviour and, in the extreme, psychopathic behaviour.

Even though the hierarchy's control tool of sexual guilt was targeted on the laity, it backfired on the hierarchy. Since thinking about sex is supposedly a sin, honest young women who confess their sins are obligated to describe their normal lusts and normal sexual fantasies to the priest who hears their confessions. When a woman confesses that she fantasizes about having sex with a priest -- possibly the person who is hearing her confession -- "impure thoughts" can turn into impure behaviour.

In March 1993, Robert Sanchez, the Archbishop of New Mexico, resigned when evidence came to light that Sanchez had been having sex with juvenile females in his parish. Pope John Paul II pleaded for compassion for Archbishop Sanchez. The pope said nothing about the girls who became sexually involved with Sanchez.

In Atlanta, Georgia, Archbishop Eugene Marino -- the highest ranking African-American Catholic clergyman in the U.S.--resigned after his long relationship with Vicki Long, who is 29 years younger, became widely known.

According to Ms. Long, when she was 17, she was working in a Catholic hospital that was run by Franciscan nuns. Ms. Long was befriended by a Sister Elaine who invited her to spend a weekend at the Franciscan abbey. Subsequently, Ms. Long visited the abbey. During the first evening of her visit, shortly after midnight, Ms. Long was sexually assaulted by Sister Elaine, wielding a large crucifix. During the encounter, Ms. Long alleges that her hymen was broken by the crucifix. Ms. Long was troubled by this experience because she is heterosexual. After returning to her job -- she sought counseling from a Father Kielhiem. After two months of counseling, Kielhiem convinced her that the only way she could firmly establish her heterosexual identity was to have a heterosexual relationship with someone who understood her problems. Want to guess with whom?--If you guessed that this person was Father Kielhiem, congratulations!. She complied and became pregnant with a daughter. Ms. Long was troubled by the sexual encounter with her counselor. She reported the incident to Father Michael Woods. Subsequently, Father Kielhiem was transferred to California. Father Woods became involved in helping Ms. Long care for her daughter. Eventually, Father Woods became involved sexually with Ms. Long. This relationship also troubled Ms. Long. At about the same time, Father Eugene Marino, the new archbishop of Atlanta, announced new guidelines on reporting clergy abuse. Ms. Long followed the new guidelines and requested a meeting with the new archbishop. A meeting was scheduled. Ms. Long met with Marino and told her story. A second meeting was scheduled. During her second meeting with Marino, they had sex. Long and Marino were married in a civil ceremony in New York City on 27 December 1988. After the ceremony, the couple was blessed by a priest in Saint Patrick's Cathedral in New York City. Long's relationship with Marino lasted two years.

The mandatory vow of celibacy is dehumanizing and the rules of celibacy are puzzling. The Eastern Orthodox church did not adopt mandatory celibacy for their priests. Neither did the Anglican church. However, married priests from those churches can convert to Roman Catholicism without abandoning their families. As a result, there are some Roman Catholic priests who have wives and children -- with the blessings of the Holy Father in Rome. There are currently 62 such families in the U.S. However, priests who were always Roman Catholic are left out in the cold.

Karol Wojtyla says that mandatory celibacy for priests can not be questioned or changed. Apparently, his holiness needs a history lesson. During the bloody Thirty Years' War between Protestants and Catholics (1618 - 1648), the pope encouraged Roman Catholic priests to marry and produce large families -- i.e., more canon fodder.

According to an article by Paula Butturini in the San Francisco Examiner (7 July 1995), "A group of soberly dressed French women talked their way into the Vatican two years ago to try to argue the case for a married clergy. When they identified themselves as longtime companions of French priests, they were quickly escorted back outside."

The Challenger Disaster would probably not have happened if N.A.S.A.'s hierarchy could have admitted that there were some design problems that needed fixing. The Roman church hierarchy currently finds itself in a similar situation. Some design problems need fixing. For a starter, the church needs to start teaching children that post pubescent sexual activity is a normal and important part of life that needs to be dealt with responsibly. However, it will be painfully difficult for the church to abandon the key to the 'greatest power ever lodged in human hands'. The church also needs to recognize that mandatory celibacy for priests is more harmful than beneficial.

Changing Wine Into Grape Juice

Probably the most famous "miracle" that the Son of man reportedly performed was changing six jugs of water into high-quality wine at a wedding feast in Cána, Israel. This story appeals to a wide spectrum of society, from the drinkers of Dom Perignon champagne to the Ripple drinkers of skid-row. Baptists and Mormons have a problem with this part of the Bible since their belief systems have a rigid no-alcohol policy. I asked a Baptist woman about the water-to-wine miracle. She told me that the miraculous change was water to grape juice and not water to wine due to an "error in translation."

It doesn't take a genius to comprehend the plainly stated story in John 2:1 and come to the conclusion that, after guzzling all of the wine on the premises, the thirsty guests at the wedding feast in Cána were rather well intoxicated before the water-to-wine business took place. I reminded the Baptist woman that the Son of man's critics of the day often criticized his fondness for drinking wine. I pointed out that, in the 1st century, there was no way of preserving grape juice since canning and refrigeration had not been invented. Typically, within 24 hours, fresh squeezed grape juice spontaneously begins converting into drinkable ethyl alcohol and carbon dioxide gas. It's a natural law that hasn't changed during 4000+ years of wine making. When confronted with this information, the true-believer's brain automatically switched, as in condom phobia, into the logic-inhibit mode and the conversation ended abruptly with the words "…grape juice."

I have discussed the story of the wedding feast at Cána with Christians who claim that the alcohol produced by fermentation in the "old days" was somehow chemically different than the alcohol that is found in modern alcoholic beverages. However, ethyl alcohol [ethanol] is the only type of alcohol that a human can drink semi-safely. All of the other types of alcohol are much more toxic. Apparently, Chemistry 101 is not part of the curriculum at Bible colleges.

Brain Restrain

The thinking mechanisms of true-believers are programmed to default to a script when they are exposed to open discussion about certain subjects. A useful tool for achieving this result is evil-labeling. The faithful are repeatedly told that they are members of God's One True Faith -- so any visual or verbal information that contradicts the teaching of the organization must be from God's enemy, "Satan." Good Christian soldiers must fight Satan and his agents at every opportunity -- or suffer grave consequences down the road.

Christian Taboos

The family unit should be the child's main emotional anchor in a stormy world. Since the family unit represents food and shelter, family reprisal is especially terrifying to a child.

Most girls discover their clitoris around the age of four or five. They learn that automanipulation of it feels pleasant. Since little girls have no reason to suspect that something which feels good could possibly be bad, they are not naturally inclined to hide clitoral automanipulation from family members. Upon seeing a daughter masturbating for the first time, some mothers express extreme anger. For the daughter, such an experience can lead to emotional problems years later. Again, its the problem of contradictory messages. It feels good -- but mom says I'm a very bad girl if I touch my clitoris. Some mothers use expressed anger plus the following method of dealing with a daughter who is caught masturbating: The mother brings a sewing needle and thread to the scene of the 'crime'. The mother pricks the daughter's vulva with the needle. The mother threatens to "sew it up if you ever touch it again."

The Christian taboo against female masturbation is reinforced by religious training. Catholic girls are taught that a devilish fate awaits those who touch their clitoris for the purpose of pleasure. This is an orally transmitted teaching that does not appear in print. Another orally transmitted teaching is that boys and girls who engage in premarital sex will burn in Hell.

I discovered a Christian family where the two boys were trained to never touch their penises -- not even for the standard practice of shaking the penis to remove the last few drops of urine from the urethra after urination. The boys were trained to remove the last drops of urine by striking their buttocks simultaneously with both hands -- a practice that raised some eyebrows when they used the urinals in elementary school.

All in the name of God.

No More Deep Thinking

Mormon children are taught that they should not discuss any tenet of Mormonism which might require deep thinking. In 1945, the Mormon hierarchy announced:

"Any Latter-day Saint who denounces or opposes, whether actively or otherwise, any plan or doctrine advocated by the 'prophets, seers, and revelators' of the Church is cultivating the spirit of apostasy. Lucifer wins a great victory when he can get members of the Church to speak against their leaders and to do their own thinking. ... When our leaders speak, the thinking has been done. When they propose a plan -- it is God's plan. When they point the way, there is no other which is safe. When they give direction, it should mark the end of controversy." (The Improvement Era, June 1945, page 354, which was most likely authored by Joseph Fielding Smith, senior member of the Twelve. Also see *Deseret News*, Church Section, Page 5, May 26, 1945).

In other words, just leave the driving to us. But is it really "safe" to trust those who wrote their own recommendation? If we change the word "Lucifer " to: the enemies of the Fatherland, all of this sounds remarkably similar to what German citizens were told during the same era by the leaders of the Third Reich.

Like the National Socialist German Workers' Party and the Roman church, the Mormon church has a list of banned books. Two Mormon missionaries told me that they had been repeatedly warned against reading certain books. Allegedly, such books were written in an attempt to destroy their faith. Fawn Brodie's biography of prophet Smith is a prime example of such books.

It seems only fitting that the infamous folly of Cold Fusion was "discovered" at an institution -- the University of Utah -- that is largely controlled by persons who have been trained to avoid deep thinking -- i.e., Mormons. There are still some folks at the University of Utah who have not given up on Cold Fusion.

Thou Shalt Not Tell the Truth -- Omertá

The Commandments, (1958) is a Roman Catholic, Confraternity of Christian Doctrine [CCD] manual for high school students. On page 104, the authors discussed violations of The Eighth Mosaic Commandment --

"Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour."

After the subtopics of "Lying" and "Calumny"--bearing false witness -- the authors included the following item:

"Detraction is making known of the hidden faults or sins of another with the accompanying danger that must result to his reputation."

In essence, what the divinely-guided authors are saying is that bearing true witness is like the exact opposite -- bearing false witness, i.e., telling lies. Since the founder of Christianity reportedly said ";I am the truth"--and the Roman church claims to be Christian -- it seems to me that "Detraction" is a subject that needs to be discussed openly. However, at the top of page 105 the authors sternly warn against discussing Catholic beliefs.

Examples of "Detraction" are given. In one of the examples, the student is advised that it would be a grave sin to tell anyone that Mrs. Smith -- who happens to be the President of the Altar and Rosary Society in the parish -- was found in an incapacitated state due to excessive consumption of alcohol. If Mrs. Smith drinks herself into a alcoholic stupor, she has a problem and she needs help. She does not need people who will enable her to deny the unpleasant truth until she possibly kills herself from alcohol poisoning -- or kills herself and/or others while driving under the influence. Why should it matter that Mrs. Smith is someone of importance in the diocese? Apparently, this means that one should never talk about the questionable behaviour of one's superiors in God's Holy Church. In catechism classes, children are taught that telling about the questionable behaviour of a priest is a mortal sin -- and those who tell will burn in Hell. A similar tool to obstruct criminal justice is used in the Mafia: omertá--silence.

The diabolical element in the so-called sin of Detraction is that it is designed to discourage people from talking about serious problems. For adults who abuse children, the sin of Detraction is a godsend. It helps to restrain children from telling the truth -- which allows the child abuser to avoid going to jail -- and to continue abusing children.

Magic and Occultism

(Ibid.) In Chapter VIII the authors sternly warn students about the danger of magic and the occult. Objects which are said to have magical powers are "sinful"--meaning that those who so indulge risk going on extended holiday to an unpleasantly warm place in the hereafter. Ouija boards are said to be especially dangerous. However, holy water, holy oil, Rosary beads, holy medals, invocation of saints, blessed candles, bells, et cetera, are represented -- without using the word "magic"--as having an abundance of something rather remarkably like it. This is not a coincidence. The church's magic was largely created to combat Black Art/witchcraft -- forms of magic that were once widely accepted as real. Driving off evil with the organization's magic is essentially a harmless endeavor. However, a by-product of emphasis on magic gimmickry is individuals who suffer from excessive and blind devotion to "things"--an accepted definition of idolatry. The Roman church hierarchy has never hesitated in affixing the label of "idolatry" to other brands of organized religion. However, in the area of promoting blind devotion to things, the Roman church has excelled rather well.

A spin-off of the church's teaching about occultism is that many Catholics accept the occult as real. Michel de Nostredame (1503-1566) was such a person. He was raised Roman Catholic. Nostredame wrote under the pen-name Nostradamus -- one of the best known names in the world of the occult. In 1555, his occult classic Centuries was published.

In Haiti, voodooism and Roman Catholicism exist side by side in a somewhat symbiotic relationship. Haitians who doubt the seriousness of voodooism are invited to consult with their parish priest.

Escape From Denial

Kirstie Alley, the actress who worked on the television series Cheers, had a rough start in life. She said that, in her early 20s, she had a cocaine problem and a problem with toxic relationships. She eventually overcame those problems. When asked how she did it, she replied that therapy was part of the answer. As she was going through therapy, she began to see a pattern. All roads kept leading to a single thing that her father told her when she was a teenager. He said:

"If you want to have a happy life, Kirstie, always tell the truth."

She added "Daddy was right."

Faith can be a good thing. However, faith that aids and abets the denial of reality is destructive. Breaking away from the faith of one's childhood is difficult for those who were brought up in a family whose religion uses inculcation that is based on a deep understanding of human weaknesses and fears.

Not being able to break away is aided by the normal human tendency for reluctance in acknowledging reality. A person who has been confirmed in, and whose social life revolves around an organized religion, is not likely to be able to see that he or she was deluded. Another factor is family loyalty, a dependable obstructor of virtually everyone's vision -- this author's included.

Each of us comes into the world with blank tape. The most important part of what's recorded onto our tape comes from the persons we live with from birth through the age of about eight years. Abnormality can not exist without a comparison. Since we have little to use for comparison during those impressionable years, it's easy to keep going in the same misdirection for a lifetime.

From the moment of birth, we so desperately want to be loved that we have a tendency to ignore inconsistencies. Untruthfulness is an obvious inconsistency. It is most difficult for any of us to face the fact that someone we love did not tell us the truth -- or allowed us to be exposed to delusive concepts when we were children.

Choking on Reality

"Truth -- like gunpowder -- is only dangerous when contained." - David A. Newkirk

Most of the crimes that are committed by con-artists go unreported. Victims are loath to admit that they were fleeced. People hate to admit mistakes -- even when it's in their best interest to do so. Consider the case of the infamous Space Shuttle rocket booster O-rings. They were seen to have been leaking fire adjacent to the main hydrogen tanks on videotapes of 10 out of 24 space shuttle missions. Most High School chemistry students can explain what happens when hydrogen gets together with heat and air. This simple fact didn't stop NASA from sabotaging itself by jettisoning the two safety engineers who were trying to have the O-ring design defect fixed before Mission 25--the Challenger Disaster.

Another example of self-sabotage and denial is the problem of some Roman Catholic priests having sex with children. In recent years, over 400 priests in the U.S. have been accused of sexual misconduct with children. According to a 1990 article in the Los Angeles Times, it was estimated that several hundred million dollars in hush-money was paid to parents of victims over a period of six years during the 1980s. Instead of dismissing priests who have sex with children, the organization counsels and then moves its sex offenders to distant, unsuspecting parishes. This results in more sexual abuse of children, more hush money and yet another new sanctuary for the sex offender. The hierarchy does this even though it is widely known that there has never been a documented case of a pedophile who changed hobbies. Simply put, pedophilia can not be cured.

The Roman church councils its admitted sex offenders at a number of so-called "treatment" centers -- one of which is the St. Luke Institute in Suitland, Maryland. Rev. Canice Connors, St. Luke's chief executive and president, has repeatedly stated that pedophilia is a "recoverable disorder." Another pedophile treatment center is operated by the Servants of the Paraclete in Jemez Springs, New Mexico. An investigation of the Servants of the Paraclete uncovered evidence that the priests operated an extensive boy-referral service that involved several hundred boys. In an editorial that appeared in the Los Angeles Times, William F. Buckley, Jr. referred to the situation in New Mexico as a "boy brothel"--and called for the pope to take corrective measures. At Saint Anthony's in Santa Barbara, California, another priest-operated boy-brothel was uncovered in 1993. In April, 1994, one of the principals plead guilty in a Santa Barbara courtroom.

Karol Wojtyla named a papal task force to investigate the problem of pedophilic priests. However, the only effective solution, short of execution -- irrevocable exclusion of all pedophiles -- is something the church can ill afford.

The State of California spent millions of dollars attempting to treat pedophiles at its facility for mentally disordered sex offenders at Atascadero, California. After decades of trying and spending millions of dollars, not one cure was ever produced. Permanent incarceration or execution are the only ways to stop pedophiles from molesting children. Pedophiles who have been castrated as a condition of their release from prison are known to take synthetic testosterone and continue as before.

After a newspaper reports allegations of a priest having sex with children, the newspaper is not infrequently accused of "Catholic bashing" or of having an "anti-Catholic bias." Cries of "Catholic bashing" appear to be a means of rallying lay Catholics. In Boston, Massachusetts, Cardinal Law called upon Catholics to "bring down the wrath of God" on the Boston Globe newspaper for its series of stories on Father James Porter -- who allegedly had sex with hundreds of boys and girls during his long career. Even though there were dozens of complainants, the district attorney stonewalled the prosecution of Father Porter for over 18 months due to 'insufficient evidence'. After the story of Father Porter was tearfully told in September 1992 by a panel of his victims on the Jenny Jones talk show, the district attorney reversed himself and decided that there was enough evidence to proceed with Father Porter's prosecution. Father Porter was convicted and sentenced to jail. Boston's district attorney is Roman Catholic.

Law enforcement agencies typically have a dismal record when it comes to prosecution of pedophile clergymen. In August 1994, the San Francisco Examiner revealed that a S.F.P.D. investigation of Monsignor {A title and an office conferred on a male cleric by a pope} Patrick O'Shea had been compromised by S.F. Police Chief Tony Ribera and Commander Diarmuid Philpot. The S.F.P.D. investigators, Perry Morris and Robert Donsbach, found evidence that O'Shea had been having sex with children in two local parishes as far back as 22 years. Early in the investigation, Police Chief Ribera alerted Archbishop John Quinn. The archbishop promptly moved O'Shea outside the jurisdiction of the S.F.P.D. After enough evidence had been gathered to file formal charges against O'Shea, Morris and Donsbach were ordered not to proceed. The investigators also reported that Philpot ordered them to remove O'Shea's name from the report of their investigation. Monsignor O'Shea was the pastor of Saint Cecilia's Church -- the same church that Police Chief Ribera attends.

God's Holy Church teaches that fighting for God's Holy Church is a means of receiving divine approval. Lay members have often helped to defend the hierarchy by writing letters to the presiding judge and district attorney in support of an accused priest -- even when the evidence of pedophilic activity is irrefutable.

The church hierarchy has no qualms about attempting to destroy the credibility of children who violate the so-called sin of Detraction, i.e., those who told the truth about inappropriate behaviour of a priest. Another tactic is to sue the parents of the child who was abused by a priest because the parents did not report the abuse sooner. Yet another tactic was recently seen in Chicago, Illinois. The Cook County D.A. refused to prosecute a local priest/school principal even though two boys had signed complaints against him. The Cook County D.A. is Roman Catholic. After the boys told their story to the local media, the church sued the boys and their parents for defaming the church. The suit was clearly a vindictive act by desperate people. When this story was revealed on the CBS news program 60 Minutes, the church spokesman tried to shift the blame for the dirty tricks onto the attorneys the church hired.

The following case occurred in Vermilion Parish, Louisiana: According to their own records and confidential internal memoranda, for at least 10 years, the church hierarchy had known that Father Gilbert J. Gauthe, Jr. was having oral and anal sex with altar boys. Over the course of Gauthe's career, the hierarchy paid hush-money and concealed the problem by moving Gauthe to parishes where his sexual proclivities were not known. This cycle of child abuse continued until one courageous mother refused the hush-money and took the priest and his organization to court. She took legal action against the church that she dearly loved because she knew that the church hierarchy planned to send the pedophilic priest to prey upon yet another unsuspecting parish community if she and her husband accepted the hush-money. The Times-Picayune newspaper broke the story in a series of articles. The Times-Picayune soon discovered that many of its advertisers were canceling their advertisements. The reason: a monsignor was personally visiting advertisers and requesting that they stop advertising in the newspaper. As a result, the newspaper experienced lean times. The church sued the newspaper for libel even though the newspaper had libeled no one. This action initially discouraged other newspapers from picking up the story. The church's libel suit was eventually dropped after the facts in the case became widely known. The pedophilic priest plead guilty, was convicted and sentenced to 20 years in jail. In 1990, a HBO movie, Judgment, was made about the story.

When a newspaper reporter asks the spokesperson for a diocese what the church is planning to do about a certain priest who has been convicted of having sex with children, the standard answer goes something like this: Father X's future will be determined by "diocesan policy." The key words are 'will be'--meaning that -- presumably -- nothing has been decided -- so, end of interview. Translation of "diocesan policy": After he serves his time in jail, Father X is likely to be sent to a distant diocese where he is not known. The diocesan spokesperson has successfully defended God's Holy Church with Orwellian 1984- "double-speak."

Sexual abuse of children is like a contagious disease. More than half of all sex abusers were victims of sex abusers during their childhoods. The convicted priest in Louisiana was himself a victim of a pedophile. He passed the disease on.

The only way to begin to stop the sexual abuse of children is to talk about it. The principal opponent of talking openly about the problem is organized religion. It seems ironic that the hush money which buys the laity's silence comes from the laity's donations.

Most lay Catholics have a problem realizing that the hierarchy -- and especially the upper hierarchy -- is not "the Church." The upper hierarchy is only one side of the organization. The bright side of the organization is most of its lay people and most of its common priests.

Father Andrew Greely and a number of other noted sociologists have estimated that there are between 2,000 and 4,000 active pedophilic priests in the Roman church In the United States. Such men have been and are poisoning the organization. Yet the hierarchy seems incapable of taking steps that will protect children and protect the organization's credibility. Pedophilia is also a problem in other organizations. The Mormon church, the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and the Boy's and Girls Club are afflicted with the malady -- and denial of it. In San Diego, California, in 1991 the Boy Scouts of America, Inc. made an offer of $1,000,000 to settle a case out of court. The case involved a scoutmaster allegedly having had anal intercourse with a 12 year old boy. The boy's parents initially refused the offer but later gave in.

This problem is nothing new. I decided to leave the Boy Scouts in the 1950s because one of the assistant scoutmasters in our troop was making sexual advances toward me. A few years later, the assistant scoutmaster was accused of molestation by two boys in the troop.

In Ventura, California, a member of the Mormon church hierarchy was being secretly investigated by the Ventura Police Department because of allegations of child pornography and pedophilia. Suddenly, the subject of the investigation altered his pattern of suspicious behaviors -- a sure sign that he had been tipped off by someone. The Ventura Police Department stopped the investigation and began looking for a mole. A search of computer access records revealed an unauthorized access by a deputy sheriff shortly before the suspect changed his behaviour. The deputy is a Mormon. The police tried to have the deputy prosecuted for obstruction of criminal justice. The Ventura County district attorney's office refused to prosecute. The district attorney is a Mormon.

A. James Quinn, a respected canon lawyer from Cleveland, Ohio, advised the Roman church hierarchy in the U.S. to send files on pedophilic priests to the Vatican Embassy in Washington, D.C. Under the concept of extraterritoriality, embassies are technically foreign countries -- so they are immune to subpoenas from U.S. courts. Quinn's legal advice followed a landmark Michigan case where the court was successful in subpoenaing church files on a pedophilic priest. The Detroit Archdiocese paid a substantial settlement. But the worst damage was not financial. For many centuries, the church had been assuring the faithful that the "confidentiality of the confessional" was absolutely inviolable. The subpoenaed records in the Michigan case prove that written records are kept of some types of confessions.

What is described by the Son of man as a most serious infraction -- transgressions against children -- is facilitated by an organization which claims to be represent God on Earth. To explain: the Roman church currently teaches that a priest having sex with a woman is a more serious sin than a priest having sex with a child. The church teaches its priests that children simply outgrow sexual experiences with adults -- and suffer no emotional damage. (Paul Wilkes. "Unholy Acts." The New Yorker, June 7, 1993.) However, in my opinion, quite the opposite is true. God needs to phone these guys on the Divine-Hotline and straighten them out.

In the Spring of 1994, the Roman church authorized altar girls. Since the church already has written records of which priests have been buggering alter boys, assigning only altar girls to assist such priests should be helpful. Assigning only altar boys to heterosexual priests might be a good idea too.

The denouement of the Roman church's priestly pedophilia scandal probably came on 24 July 1997 when a Dallas, Texas jury awarded 11 Catholic altar boys $119 million in damages because of sexual abuse by Father Rudolph Kos. Even though the church knew that Kos was buggering altar boys, they moved him from parish to parish over a period of 11 years in an attempt to hide the problem. The trial jury said that they wanted to send a message to the church.

Damaged Goods

Some of the most distraught people I have known appear to have been emotionally damaged by religious inculcation. Most of them were good, caring people. Unfortunately, they led less than pleasant lives. Some committed suicide. For those who had children, the legacy of toxic-shame was often passed on to yet another generation.

Can religious organizations be made less harmful?

Improving the situation for future generations will be difficult. People have a propensity to resist change. The group of people who resist change the most are those who have been given power and authority. People love to have authority and the respect it brings -- and they hate like hell to lose it.

"I know that most men, including those who are at ease with problems of the greatest complexity, can seldom accept even the simplest and most obvious truth if it be such as would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions which they had delighted in explaining to colleagues, which they had proudly taught to others, and which they had woven, thread by thread, into the fabric of their lives." - Tolstoy

In other words, you can't teach old dogmatists new tricks.

Another factor is the seductive power of power. In 1887, historian John E. E. Acton wrote --

"All power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely."

For six years, Acton's tutor was J. H. von Döllinger, a Professor of Church History in Munich, Germany. Von Döllinger used the pen-name "Janus". He wrote the following about the lust of dominion:

"All absolute power demoralizes its possessor. To that all history bears witness. And if it be a spiritual power which rules men's consciences, the danger is only so much greater, for the possession of such a power exercises a specially treacherous fascination, while it is peculiarly conducive to self-deceit, because the lust of dominion, when it has become a passion, is only too easily in this case excused under the plea of zeal for the salvation of others."

Von Döllinger was excommunicated from the Roman church by his archbishop in 1871. He was subsequently fired by the Catholic-owned university for reasons that were fabricated.

The Maestros

Italians have proven to be masters in the art of absorbing and controlling people for thousands of years. Consider the Roman Empire. Merely the decline of the Roman Empire took more than twice as long as the United States has existed. The Church of Rome was largely crafted by Italians with the help of talented individuals from neighbouring countries. The organization was ingeniously designed for maximum expansion. The facility to absorb other religions has been its most powerful expansionist tool. The Mafia is another example of an Italian-crafted organization which has controlled its people masterfully. Like the church, the emotional glue that holds the Mafia together is family loyalty and blind obedience to the family patriarch. Blind obedience is the central theme of the confirmation ceremony of both organizations.

Italians are world renowned for their art and music. They invented the chromatic scale that is the basis for modern music. The word romantic gives credit where credit is due.

Several women have told me that they are strongly attracted by the impressive beauty in the church's art, music and rituals. At the invitation of one of these women, I attended a Christmas High Mass. Eyes saw great beauty. Ears heard splendid music. Noses were filled with pleasant smells. Faith and Tradition filled the room. I was impressed. Phineas Taylor Barnum would have been impressed. However, no one appeared to be having a good time. 25 years later I attended a Roman Catholic wedding. No one appeared to be having a good time.

The Church That Guilt Built

Christianity's founder promoted love. Modern Christianity advertises love and promotes guilt. Its the old contradictory message shtik. Love is the carrot and guilt is the stick. Emotions can be divided into two groups -- negative and positive. Fear, guilt and rage are negative emotions. Love and joy are positive emotions. Misdirected guilt is clearly a destructive emotion. Guilt's effect on self esteem is profound.

In early childhood, guilt is the outgrowth of not having some needs met by adult care givers. Here's how it works: Adult care givers provide food and shelter -- so the child concludes that the care givers love the child. The hook is set. However, when other needs are not met, the child wrongly concludes that he or she is being punished for something that he or she did wrong. It never occurs to the child that he or she is not at fault. The child's rage is wrongly turned inward.

Few branches of Christianity promotes and utilizes negative emotions as expertly as the Roman church. The hinge-pin of their belief system is guilt. A "recovering Catholic" explained Catholic guilt as follows:

"If it feels good, you are supposed to feel guilty."

Here are some of the ingredients:

However, since people are certain to think about something that they have no control over -- after they have supposedly been forgiven for thinking about something that they have no control over -- the belief system is like a merry-go-round that does not stop. Other types of guilt are used, but most relate to sex. For example, if parents limit their families to a reasonable size by the use of effective contraceptives, they are led to believe that they are guilty of murdering the unborn. Understandably, this proscription encourages faithful couples to give the rhythm-method a try. Children who are born as a result of using the rhythm-method will be somewhat unwanted children. Children who are somewhat unwanted are likely to not have some needs met. Such children will conclude that they must be guilty of something -- they know not what.

When a seriously defective child is born, faithful parents are left to wonder if they have been religiously remiss. This is almost certain to increase guilt and church attendance. However, the hierarchy is passionately opposed to having a fetus genetically tested to allow prospective parents to prevent such disasters. Fetal genetic testing was put on the official list of "mortal sins" in the new catechism (May 1994). In vitro fertilization is a means of becoming pregnant that involves no sex -- and therefore no so-called 'original sin'. Without original sin, guilt and shame are seriously compromised. According to the new catechism, in-vitro fertilization is another "mortal sin" -- as is artificial insemination.

During early childhood, attention, education and approval from an adult male and an adult female are beneficial. A family's having had too many children causes a deficiency of adult attention and adult approval for each child. This is especially the case in our present socioeconomic system. Children who receive too little attention and approval from adults can become guilt and shame laden individuals who stumble through life seeking father substitutes and relief from the pain of shame. This element appears to be one of the main ingredients in the addictive personality.

If a father spends much of his spare time drinking alcohol or using other types of drugs, trying to compensate for the shame and guilt that was planted in his head by religious inculcation, his children may become casualties of the same agents. The organization is conveniently there to assume the unfulfilled role of father for the children of dysfunctional fathers and to provide temporary relief from the shame and guilt that these fathers (and the organization) bring about. The resultant suffering allegedly brings God the Father's approval. Such suffering also supposedly brings approval from the Holy Mother.

It is common for abused children to blame themselves in some way for the abuse. This is especially the case for abused daughters. The logic goes something like this: "I must be bad or my father wouldn't treat me this way." The fact that her mother, who was often similarly abused when she was a child, does nothing to stop the abuse only reinforces such feelings. As a result, an abused daughter typically feels the need to be punished. A belief system that glorifies and exalts suffering is tailor made for such people.

The faithful's need for suffering can be fulfilled in secret. Common forms of self punishment, or "mortification," are sticking pins into themselves and/or cutting themselves with a razor. This behaviour is subtly reinforced by the pierced, bleeding, suffering figure in their churches -- an image that children are routinely exposed to during their most impressionable years.

But the worst danger is not from pins and razors. Daughters of abusive fathers begin connecting love with pain. When they grow up, they start searching for men who will hurt them -- happily thinking they are searching for love. If, perchance, such a daughter meets a suitor who treats her with care and respect, she rejects him immediately because she thinks he's weird. In the daughter's mind, suffering and abuse are normal in a loving relationship.

If a woman believes that experiencing pleasure during sex is a sin, she may feel less guilty if her husband uses force. An example can be found in 'Gone With the Wind'. The Irish-American Roman Catholic heroine, can not achieve normal sexual fulfillment without the use of force.

Male orgasm is virtually automatic. For most women, female orgasm is desirable. However, female orgasm is more complicated. Teaching a female child that sexual pleasure is sinful can lead to a problem. As a married adult, when she is having sex and experiencing pleasure, a warning message flashes in her brain. In some individuals, the guilt message from childhood inculcation overwhelms the pleasure message and orgasm remains beyond reach. A husband who can not bring his wife to orgasm is not likely to feel that he is a successful male. Consequently, he may seek less-inhibited sexual partners. It is not surprising to me that the Roman church does not permit divorce because of heterosexual adultery.

It would seem appropriate that the Virgin Cult debate the following question: If God intended that sexual pleasure was a sin, why did "He" give females a clitoris, a Gräfenberg-spot, and the ability -- sans childhood mind-tampering -- to have an orgasm?

The organization provides an excellent social structure. However, social activities provide a place where unmarried children of affected families can be attracted -- often magnetically -- to each other, fall in love, marry, and create similar families. The resulting children, like their parents, and their parent's parents and their parent's parent's parents, are likely to be lovingly turned over to the organization's guilt and shame-based machinery during their most impressionable years. The fundamental problem is that the only path of escape from the tragic cycle of dysfunction -- talking about reality, i.e., the realization of reality -- is deterred by what the organization teaches.

According to medical definition, a narcotic has two characteristics -- temporarily relieves pain and deters the realization of reality.

A Nice Man Who Rocked the Boat

As a boy growing up in a poor Italian family with 13 children, Angelo Roncalli understood the problems that the Roman church was causing to its people and to itself. Angelo became a priest. He worked in the diplomatic corps. At one point he was ambassador to France -- a difficult assignment. Angelo was slowly promoted through the hierarchy to the rank of cardinal. Since he had been careful to avoid taking a position on anything that was controversial during his long career, he was not considered to be a threat by either the conservative faction or the liberal faction in the College of Cardinals. When Pius XII died from severe gastrointestinal problems in 1958, Angelo was in his 70s and he had cancer. So, in the event that he turned out to be a boat-rocker, he would not be rocking the boat for long. Angelo won the election. He took the alias John XXIII. It soon became clear that this pope was going to be different. He was not comfortable with the knee-jerk respect that the office elicited. He, like Pope John VIII, seemed to care most about ordinary people.

Angelo talked about "opening windows to let in some fresh air"--into what had become a musty organization. On January 20, 1959 he was inspired -- by what he referred to as a heavenly flash of light -- to convene an ecumenical council for the purpose of updating (aggiornamento) the organization. This, the 20th such meeting, would be known as the Second Vatican Council -- a.k.a. Vatican II. It began in 1962 and concluded in 1965.

Angelo died from cancer in 1963 -- before the work of Vatican II was finished -- but not before many of the ludicrous old traditions had been gleefully voted out by the delegates. Unfortunately, one of Angelo's main targets for change -- the policy on family planning --had not been resolved. Angelo's successor, Pope Paul VI, decided the issue in 1968. He said that using real birth control is premeditated murder. Angelo also wanted to undo the church's long tradition of anti-Semitism. During the Second World War, Angelo forged 4,000 baptismal certificates which helped as many Jews survive the Holocaust. In 1962, he officially changed church doctrine in regards to the Jews. He cleared them of any responsibility for the death of Jesus. He removed all vestiges of anti-Semitism from Canon Law. However, Pope Paul VI not only defended Pius XII's silence during the extermination of the Jews -- he tried to convince the world that Pius XII had really done the right thing! In his Passion Sunday Sermon for 1965, Paul VI blamed the entire Jewish race for slandering and killing Jesus.

The founder of Christianity reportedly said "Love your neighbour as yourself." The Roman church -- who claims to be Christian -- has traditionally behaved as though the founder's advice does not apply to Jewish neighbours. Curiously, one of the most revered personages in Roman Catholicism, the mother of Jesus, was Jewish. There is no evidence that she converted to any other belief system. The only member of Jesus' family who is known to have abandoned Judaism was his younger brother James. He became the leader of the early church in Jerusalem. Sometime around the year 63, James was executed by the Jewish high council -- the Sanhedrin.

Vatican II provided the first setback in history to the Queen of Heaven. Mary had enjoyed a steady rise in official status from 431 to 1950. Prior to Vatican II, some members of the hierarchy were teaching the faithful that Mary was a Co-Redeemer -- making her equal to her son. Even though the Vatican II delegates were under pressure to ratify the Co-Redeemer doctrine, they made Mary subordinate to Jesus by placing her in the community of believers rather than in the co-equal position the Mary-promoters had hoped for. As a result, statues of Mary have been removed from some sanctuaries and there have been a decrease in traditional novena (9 days of prayer) devotions to the Holy Virgin. Karol Wojtyla, Joseph Ratsinger and other Mary-promoters think that Vatican II went overboard.

The Snooze-Button Boys

The reforms that were passed at Vatican II could help to correct many of the harmful practices of the organization. Implementing the reforms is another matter. Good ol' boy's club syndrome permeates the upper hierarchy. Genuine change for the good does not come easily. It's the old problem of you can't teach old dogmatists new tricks. The conservative old hard-liners in the organization -- the faction that lost ground at Vatican II--is still trying to hold on to the past -- the past that gave them power and r-e-s-p-e-c-t, albeit synthetic.

Some of the reforms that were passed at Vatican II are:

Many lay Catholics are aware that these reforms have not been genuinely implemented. Priests are leaving the organization in significant numbers. The alarm bell keeps going off -- but the old hard-liners keep pushing the snooze-button.

The present day de facto leaders of the snooze-button faction in the hierarchy are Karol Wojtyla and his deputy Joseph Ratsinger. After Mr. Wojtyla was elected pope in 1978, he has been quietly closing windows that Mr. Roncalli opened. Even though he says he supports Vatican II, Mr. Wojtyla consistently shows a preference for the promotion of those who privately oppose Vatican II reforms . Priests who openly support reforms are coming to realize that they are not likely to be promoted for as long as Mr. Wojtyla sits in the driver's seat. Because he has been busy packing the College of Cardinals with conservative voters for the next papal election, the chances for improvement are slim to none in the foreseeable future. As of November 1994, Wojtyla had appointed 100 of the 120 cardinals who are likely to elect the next pope. Thus, it is probable that the next pope will also be covertly anti-Vatican II. The writing is on the wall. Many pro-Vatican II priests are bailing out of the organization. This exacerbates the current problem of not enough priests to go around.

In an interview, Karol Wojtyla was asked why women in the church weren't being given more consideration. He replied that if women don't like our rules, they should start their own church and make their own rules.

Since Mr. Wojtyla became pope, over 20% of the women in religious orders have left. In the United States, tens of thousands of nuns and sisters have left the organization. Currently 97% of the community of nuns and sisters are over the age of 40.

The present situation is almost as if Vatican II was ripped out of the history books -- like the original Pope John VIII. This is disheartening to the hundreds of millions of people who put their trust in the reforms that were promised by Vatican II. As proved to be the case with Soviet communism, the grip of a relatively small number of old hard-liners is not easily broken.

Another source of disenchantment with the organization is an on-going scandal.

The Vatican bank Scandal

According to the American Heritage Dictionary, a bank is "a business establishment in which money is kept for saving or commercial purposes or is invested, supplied for loans, or exchanged." The Roman church has one of these -- but they don't call it a bank. The Institute for Religious Works -- the Vatican's de facto bank -- is controlled by a committee of 15 cardinals chaired by the Vatican's Secretary of State. It was established in 1942 by Pius XII. The Institute for Religious Works is the banking equivalent of a black-hole. Money goes in and disappears without visible trace to the outside world. No one except the pope may authorize outsiders to look at the Vatican bank's books. Pope John Paul II refused a request to do so by the Italian government.

The Vatican bank scandal was a spin-off from an investigation by the district attorney's office in Dade County, Florida. The DA's investigators discovered that a local bank, the World Finance Corporation, was the largest and oldest North American money launderer for cocaine traffickers. The World Finance Corporation was regularly sending cocaine profits to the Sisalpine Bank in the Bahamas. The Sisalpine Bank was partly owned by Archbishop Paul Marcinkus, the manager of the Vatican bank in Rome. Drug money from the Sisalpine Bank was deposited in The Institute for Religious Works/Vatican bank. The Sisalpine Bank was also depositing heroin money for a Middle Eastern terrorist organization known as the Gray Wolves. The average service charge for laundering drug money is 10%. Launder a billion and keep 100 million -- in cash. CIA Director Bill Casey limited the investigation of the World Finance Corporation "for national security reasons" when investigators discovered that eight of its twelve directors were CIA agents. Mr. Casey was Roman Catholic.

At this time there was a civil war in Nicaragua between the Contras and the Sandanista communist government. This war was a pet-project of President Ronald Reagan. The U.S. Congress passed a law -- the Bolen Amendment -- that prohibited the CIA from spending public money on the Contras. Thus, CIA arms purchases for the Contras had to be made with cash.

Archbishop Paul Marcinkus has warrants for his arrest in the United States and in Italy And yet he is still the manager of the Vatican bank. Paul Marcinkus and Karol Wojtyla are old friends -- so there is little chance that Marcinkus can be flushed out of his sanctuary in the Vatican to face justice.

The Roman church claims to be pro-family and pro-life.

Are cocaine and heroin pro-family or pro-life?

The Short Happy Life of Pope John Paul I

Albino Luciani, alias Pope John Paul I, was the first pope to use a double name. Albino was a conscionable man from a poor background. He rejected much of the pomp and formality of the office. He refused the tiara, the symbol of papal power. He preferred to walk rather than to be carried on the papal throne. In public audiences he often used the personal pronoun "I." Albino saw himself as a pastor rather than a dictator.

"Albino Luciani had a dream. He dreamed of a Roman Catholic Church that would truly respond to the people on vital issues such as artificial birth control. He dreamed of a church that would dispense with the wealth, power, and prestige it had acquired through Vatican, Incorporated; of a Church that would get out of the marketplace; where the message of Christ had become tainted; of a Church that would rely on what has always been its greatest asset, its source of true power, its greatest claim to a unique prestige; the Gospel." -- David A. Yallop. In God's Name - An Investigation into the Murder of Pope John Paul I. ISBN 0-553-24855-3

Pope John Paul I. -- like Pope John XXIII, the father of Vatican II -- believed in reforms because he knew they were the only way to save the organization from itself. Thanks to a Vatican insider who had secretly been conducting an investigation, Albino learned that there were problems at the Vatican bank shortly after he took office. There were questions about the de-facto bank's involvement with 950 million dollars in counterfeit and stolen securities that were proffered by the dominant Mafia family in Las Vegas, Nevada. He learned of the bank's apparent involvement in laundering cocaine and heroin money. After reviewing the evidence, Albino announced that he would sign the authorization for a bank audit. On September 28, 1978, one day before he was scheduled to sign the authorization for the bank audit, he had a late snack of strawberries, went to bed, and dropped dead, even though he was in seemingly excellent health, after 34 days in office. The Vatican declined to allow an autopsy.

CIA Director Casey fared no better than Mr. Luciani. Shortly before he was scheduled to tell everything he knew to Congress, he died rather suddenly. Requiescat In Pace, Albino. Requiescat In Pace, Bill. Roberto Calvi, the other co-owner of the Sisalpine Bank in the Bahamas also died rather suddenly. Rumor has it that he was "suicided".

Pope John Paul I's successor, John Paul II, said he wishes that people would not talk about or write about the Vatican bank scandal.

Amuck Machinery

In Mansions of Philosophy, Will Durant described the Roman church as 'beauty without truth'. If the organization were not so, it would lose some of its broad appeal. Those who are least able to deal with reality need beauty without truth. Certainly, it was the cleverest priests who designed the organization -- but the organization would never have been built without popular demand. The priests merely capitalized on what people wanted. Drug dealers exist for a similar reason -- to provide temporary relief from emotional pain. However, drug dealers don't supply the shame and guilt that helps to create the pain.

No single genius came up with the master plan for the machinery that Rauschning and Freud wrote about. The machinery was built up in many layers through the efforts of thousands of priests, over a great span of time. In the beginning, the priests engineered and controlled the machinery. Over the centuries, the machinery became more and more powerful. A similarity can be seen in Terminator -- wherein men built machines that eventually ran amuck and began to destroy the men who created them. A run amuck machine, the HAL computer, was a major story element in 2001, A Space Odyssey. Perhaps the first person to realize that the Revolution of 1917 was being undermined by its own 'machinery', was its leader, V. I. Lenin. On his deathbed in 1924, his last words were:

"The machinery has begun to control the engineers."

The story of the Dead Sea Scrolls illustrate the problem. The scrolls contain credible information about a carpenter/teacher/lecturer from Nazareth, Israel who founded what is now called Christianity. Instead of welcoming the information about him and what he reportedly said during his lecture tour, the church tried to suppress it. Yet the church staunchly claims to be his earthly representative. No one should be surprised by this strange twist. He said that holy men are intrinsically corrupt.

Generic Problems with Modern Christianity

When the protesters left the Roman church in the 16th century and started Protestantism, they abandoned some of the more troublesome inventions of the church -- such as the vow of celibacy, mother goddess worship, idolatry, Purgatory, and the sale of indulgences. However, Protestantism kept many inventions of the Roman church. The more problematic of these were 'original sin', the trinity, ritual symbolic sacrifice and once saved, always saved. If one is "saved," ethical behaviour loses importance. Curiously, the main theme of the Sermon on the Mount seems to be about individual behaviour -- not a quick-fix gimmick which erodes the importance of individual behaviour. Charles M. Keating, Jr. -- the man who controlled Lincoln Savings while it was ripping off hundreds of millions of dollars from depositors -- eventually costing billions of dollars to U.S. taxpayers -- is "saved" -- praise the Lord In addition to being a devout Christian, Keating is a vociferous anti-pornographer. During his heyday, Keating owned a collection of more than 3000 examples of police-confiscated pornography that he kept in an "evidence room" next to his corporate office. Keating said he kept it to show visitors just how bad pornography really is. Amen, brother Keating. It is indeed unfortunate that brother Jimmy Swaggert, who is also "saved," did not have the opportunity to view brother Keating's extensive pornography collection before brother Keating began his stay in the Federal slammer.

Fixing the problems with the Protestant version of Christianity will not be easy. In 1991, the Presbyterian church held a council. Many issues were placed on the table. Newspapers reported on the daily jousting between the old hard-liners and the reformers. For a while it looked like the organization would change for the better. In the end, the old hard-liners won and nothing substantial was changed. It seems that Protestantism, like Catholicism, will continue to remain a captive of the past until at least another generation of old hard-liners die off.

In recent years, a steady purge has been taking place among Baptists. Liberal Baptists are being booted out by conservative -- a.k.a. "hard shell" Baptists -- a group that proscribes movies, dancing, gambling, card playing and drinking -- even in moderation. Under these rules, the person they call Jesus would get the boot.

Respect Addiction

When I began writing this book, I did not realize just how important respect was to some religious leaders. During the Summer of 1991, a rhubarb in Los Angeles illuminated the subject. On the 12th of August, more than 100 public television stations across the United States were scheduled to present a documentary program titled *Stop the Church* on the Point of View series. The content of the program generated behind-the-scenes pressure on PBS. Two weeks before the scheduled broadcast, PBS suddenly canceled *Stop the Church*. PBS said that the program was canceled because it was "inappropriate for airing because its pervasive tone of ridicule of the Catholic church overwhelms its critique of policy." PBS also said that the program did not meet PBS standards for quality. This change in course was rather curious since PBS had previously determined that the program met their quality standards for documentaries. Furthermore, *Stop the Church* had won awards at film festivals. A professor of cinematography at the University of Southern California said that the quality of the program was more than adequate for a documentary. He added that *Stop the Church* was especially well edited. The lack-of-quality argument was beginning to emit an odor like Bandini Mountain. It was obvious that an unseen force had been twisting arms at PBS. Three public television stations refused to go along with the attempt to stop the public from seeing *Stop the Church*. They were KCET in Los Angeles, KQED in San Francisco, and WNET in New York City. It didn't take long for the unseen force to rear its head.

Roger Cardinal Mahony, the Archbishop of Los Angeles, had seen *Stop the Church* and he hotly condemned it. He not only did not want Catholics to see the program, he unctuously tried to take away the right of non-Catholics to see the program. On the 5th of September, one day before the program was to be broadcast on KCET, Mahony held a news conference. He was annoyed because KCET refused to accede to his "requests" that *Stop the Church* not be shown to the public. Furthermore, Cardinal Mahony -- a long time supporter of KCET -- suggested that people stop donating money to KCET. If he could not influence the station, he would try to kill it by financial strangulation.

This was not Mahony's first about face. Mahony had a long record of supporting unions. Mahony helped Caesar Chavez organize the United Farm Workers Union. However, when the gardeners who work at local Catholic cemeteries tried to obtain a union contract, Mahony opposed it. When Paula Lopez, a television reporter from KCAL-TV in Los Angeles asked him a question about the gardeners' union during an interview, Mahony turned and angrily walked away.

When a reporter at the news conference asked Mahony if he was calling for a boycott of KCET, Mahony gave an evasive answer. Another reporter asked him if he realized that his well publicized conflict with KCET over showing *Stop the Church* was going to greatly increase the number of viewers who watched it? Mahony replied:

"Good, we want as many people as possible to see how bad the program really is."

Mahony claimed that KCET was broadcasting the program only because of a threat of telephone jamming by those who wanted the program to be aired. The president of KCET confirmed that there had been such threats in addition to threats from those who did not want the program to be aired. He described the "requests" KCET received from Mahony's intermediaries as "threats." Mahony's subsequent call for the financial strangulation of KCET left little doubt as to the nature of those "requests." So if terrorists made requests instead of threats, perhaps they would receive better press.

A reporter asked Cardinal Mahony what he found to be most offensive in the program. Mahony said that he was offended most by the disrespect that was shown for Cardinal O'Connor, the Archbishop of New York. Mahony also said he was offended by the program's ridicule of Catholic beliefs. however, this was only a different side of the same coin -- respect. Knee-jerk respect for the hierarchy is an intrinsic part of Roman Catholicism. It seemed to me that Cardinal Mahony feared that a disrespect epidemic might break out on his turf if the program was seen in L.A.

There are two kinds of disrespect, justified and unjustified. Justified disrespect is earned by the recipient. As the Son of man is alleged to have said:

"The only thing that defiles a man comes out his own mouth."

Here are some of the reasons why people disrespect Cardinal O'Connor:

•Through covert political pressure, O'Connor has been able to impede or block public health programs that educate young people about AIDS.

•O'Connor tacitly endorses blocking patients from entering private health care facilities that perform abortions. O'Connor solicits and collects donations to support these unlawful acts.

•O'Connor has repeatedly stated that listening to rock music causes demonic possession. O'Connor's diocese regularly performs exorcisms for those who inadvertently overdose on rock music and become possessed by demons.

•O'Connor says he supports the separation of church and state -- yet he covertly attempts to influence politicians whenever and wherever doing so suits his agenda.

Basically, Cardinal O'Connor does not appear to respect other people. Meanwhile, O'Connor preaches "love" from his pulpit.

*Stop the Church* is a documentary about a protest, during a Sunday Mass, in Cardinal O'Connor's church -- Saint Patrick's Cathedral in New York City. Most of the protesters were "pro-choice" abortion rights activists and AIDS-activists. Some of the protesters referred to themselves as "recovering Roman Catholics." The protest was a calculated takeoff on the "right-to-life" tactic of laying down, en masse, to block abortion clinics. The protest weapon which O'Connor had tacitly approved for use against the abortion clinics was about to be used against him inside the church where he preached -- where his policies and authority had never been challenged. Another weapon was condoms. Without doubt, condoms are the terror weapon of choice to use against condomphobics. The protesters tossed packages of condoms about the church during the protest. The plan worked. Cardinal O'Connor became visibly enraged.

Feeding a Need

Everyone needs respect. Some people seem to need more respect than others. Love and respect pleasantly stimulate the part of the brain that is also pleasantly stimulated by food, sex, cocaine, and small amounts of alcohol. To feel normal, the human brain needs a fair measure of stimulation to its pleasure center. Love and respect are the most important stimulants. When a lack of love and respect exists, the brain seeks other sources of pleasantness. This can lead to abuse of food, drugs, sex, and/or the relentless pursuit of an activity which brings respect.

The adages "love yourself," and "respect yourself" are very much easier said than realized. If one's self-respect is too low as the result of negative experiences during early childhood, a lifelong respect deficiency may result.

Cardinal Mahony was revulsed by the disrespect shown to Cardinal O'Connor in *Stop the Church*. Cardinal O'Connor was unnerved by being disrespected.

Why is respect so highly treasured by the hierarchy -- and why do they so greatly fear the loss of respect?

Perhaps an abundant flow of respect is required to feed a need that was created by something in the past that lessened self-respect. A likely source of this lessening of self-respect is the guilt and shame based inculcation to which Mahony and O'Connor were subjected during their most impressionable years. Another factor might be the vow of celibacy. If this vow is kept, an important component of human well-being is absent. On the other hand, if the vow is celibacy is not kept, shame and guilt are probable. Either way, it's a no-win situation. Because of these factors, Mahony and O'Connor seem to have two strikes against them. This is probably clearer to outsiders than to those who have become accustomed to exercising self-serving power.

Many of the adjustments to the belief system that occurred over the centuries had the net effect of increasing respect for the hierarchy. The outré purple silk and other types of flamboyant clothing and jewelry that attires the upper hierarchy is reminiscent of that which has traditionally been worn by narcissistic despots and showy entertainers. How would the founder of Christianity look among such company?

Could the post-sixth century concept of Hell be related to the need for r-e-s-p-e-c-t? It takes little imagination to conclude that not showing proper respect to those who claim to have the divinely authorized power to facilitate the forgiveness of sins could lead to dire consequences beyond the grave.

When the Archbishop of Los Angeles suggested that people stop donating money to a public television station, it was more than a suggestion. There are four million Roman Catholics in the Los Angeles diocese. Better to be safe than risk eternal roasting and bobbing for road apples in a most unpleasant liquid.

A former member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph told me:

"The intrinsic problem with Roman Catholicism is that respect for the hierarchy is more important than respect for the truth."

A KCET representative told me that after Mahony's call for action, the station was inundated with angry mail and subscription cancellations. During the following months, donations decreased substantially. By April of 1992 the station was in financial trouble.

After *Stop the Church* was aired, PBS began receiving pressure from the Religious Right. The U.S. Congress -- who substantially funds PBS--also began hearing from the sanctimonious. As a result, Masterpiece Theater productions were subjected to censorship. Words that offend the Religious Right were blanked out before KCET and other stations received the program. Perhaps PBS should rename the program Masterpieces Theater.

During 1993 and 1994, KCET aired no program that examined the teachings of the Roman church.

Roger Mahony complained about contemporary TV sitcoms that portray real people dealing with real problems -- such as 'Roseann'. Roger wants the TV industry to produce sitcoms like 'Ozzie and Harriet', I' Love Lucy', 'The Brady Bunch', and 'Father Knows Best' -- i.e., unreal people who do not deal with reality. According to an article he wrote for the *New York Times*, sociologist and Catholic priest, Father Andrew Greely claims that such TV sitcoms are essentially "Christian morality plays."


Albert Einstein believed in a supreme creator, but he also believed that none of the world's organized religions understood the subject. It doesn't take a genius to see that there is something amiss with a "God":

Members of differing religions have passionately slaughtered each other by the millions over the centuries. The Thirty Years' War in Europe was a Protestant versus Catholic fray that began when Protestants tossed two members of the Catholic hierarchy into a pile of dung. In Germany alone, this conflict caused more than 12 million deaths. The population of Germany was less than 20 million when the troubles began. In terms of relative loss of life, the Thirty Years' War was far more devastating than World War One and World War Two combined. All in the name of God.

"…religion must be the cause of unity, harmony and agreement among mankind. If it be the cause of discord and hostility, if it leads to separation and creates conflict, the absence of religion would be preferable in the world." --`Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith, page 247.

Even though they have had serious disagreements over the years, the diverse spectrum of Christian denominations are in agreement on one thing: "Satan" is their enemy. However, a greater enemy of present-day Christian religions appears to be the one who called himself the Son of man. His was supposed to be a religion without meddling middlemen and without a traditional deity who was into sacrifice and hocus pocus. Yet Christianity is based on the magical quick-fix of "getting saved" and ritual-cannibalistic sacrifice.

Christianity condemns the contemporary humanist movement. Yet most of the principles outlined in the Son of man's Sermon on the Mount resemble the principles of humanism. More recognizable enemies of Christianity are information, personal freedom to choose, and open discussion. True to the dictates of their faith, fearful true-believers persistently attempt to impose their own version of morality on artists, medical doctors, those seeking medical treatment -- especially women, pharmaceutical manufacturers, writers, schools, broadcasters, advertisers, publishers, politicians, and the general public. Much of what's wrong in our world has more than a little to do with so-called "holy men" and their powerful organizations.

It has been said that "God" created man in his own image. It seems that man has managed to create a "God" with most of man's worst attributes.

References & Related Material


Allegro, John M. The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Christian Myth., second revised edition. 1994, Prometheus Books. ISBN 0-87975-757-4

Behar, Richard. "Scientology, the Cult of Greed" *Time*, May 6, 1991.

Baigent, Michael and Leigh, Richard. The Dead Sea Scrolls Deception, Summit Books,1991, ISBN 0-671-73454-7.

Berry, Jason. Lead Us Not Into Temptation.

Booth, Father Leo. When God Becomes a Drug -- Breaking the Chains of Religious Addiction.

Bradshaw, John. Healing The Shame That Binds You.

Brodie, Fawn M. No Man Knows My History…, Second Edition, 1991, Alfred A. Knopf.

Catholic Encyclopedia, 1987, Thomas Nelson Publishers. Nihil Obstat: Rev. Monsignor John F. Murphy, S.T.D. Censor Librorum April 17, 1986.

Confraternity of Christian Doctrine of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul, Inc. The Commandments. 1958, 251 Summit Avenue, Saint Paul, MN.

Crossan, John Dominic. Jesus, A Revolutionary Biography, 1994, Harper Collins Publishers, ISBN 0-06-061661-x.

Dawidowicz, Lucy. The War Against the Jews, 1975.

Diamond, J. Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places, 1988, New York, N.Y., G. P. Putnam.

De Rosa, Father Peter. Vicars of Christ -- the Dark Side of the Papacy, 1988, New York, NY, Crown Publishers.

Döllinger, J.H. Ignaz von ("Janus"). The Pope and the Council First published in Germany in 1869 as Der Papst und Das Concil.

Durant, Will. The Mansions of Philosophy, and The Lessons of History.

Eisenmann, Robert, and Wise, Michael. Dead Sea Scrolls Uncovered (1992). .

Haught, James A. "Holy Horrors"-- a concise history of murder and mayhem in the name of "God"--*Penthouse*, August 1990, page 54.

Hoffer, Eric. The True Believer.

Huxley, Aldus. Brave New World.

King, N.Q., "A Study of Theodosius the Great". Colombia University Encyclopedia, 1960.

Laake, Deborah. Secret Ceremonies.

Levine, Art. "Ministries of Fear." *Penthouse*, November 1992, page 114.

Quinn, D. Michael. The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, Signature Books.

Secunda, Victoria. Women and Their Fathers.

Twain, Mark. Christian Science, Roughing It, Joan of Arc.

Watters, Wendell W. Deadly Doctrine, Buffalo, N.Y., Prometheus Books.

Wilkes, Paul. "Unholy Acts." The New Yorker, June 7, 1993.

Yallop, David A. In God's Name - An Investigation Into the Murder of Pope John Paul I, Bantam Books, Inc., June 1984.

Yeakley, Jr., Flavil. The Discipling Dilemma., 1985


The story of the female pope, John VIII, is told in *Behind The Veil, Nuns*, Part 1, a Studio D production that was made for the National Film Board of Canada. Repeats of the series can be seen on PBS stations in the U.S.

Information about cultic sects on the Internet:- - One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six