April 5, 2008 - When Prayer Fails: Child Homicide via Prayer
One year later, same subject, and Dan opens with the same joke. Ouch, Dan.
Theocracy Alert discusses Sen. Grassley's inquiry into prosperity preachers and other subjects. The movie Fitna (sent to me by a friend a while back) warranted a discussion. Fitna could just as easily be about any of the three Abrahamic religions, at some period in their shared history. Religion, faith and willful ignorance in general is the problem, not just one specific religion.
Pagan Pulpit speaks to the subject of the episode, faith healing. Dan quotes James 5:13-15, and rightly points out that all prayers are supposed to be answered (several preachers have told me over the years "But sometimes the answer is no"; that's not what the bible says) which calls the entirety of faith into question.
Shawn Francis Peters was the guest. His book When Prayer Fails: Faith Healing, Children, and the Law is his third book on the subject of religion and law. This interview delves more deeply into the issue of preventable diseases and the specific nature of the laws involved than last years interview with Rita Swan.
The activity of some of the parents involved really begs the question of why the legal obligation for children's health care isn't more stringently enforced in cases of religiously based neglect, than in other cases. The failure of god to deliver a miracle when it is prayed for can only be seen as a failure on the part of those doing the praying, if prayer is truly effective. A direct indictment if there ever was one.
"The hands that help are better far than the lips that pray" -Robert Green Ingersol
2007 Archive episode.
April 7, 2007 - Secular Lobby in Congress
Lori Lipman Brown was the guest. She represents a resource that many people might find useful, The Secular Coalition for America, a lobbying group in Washington DC that does pretty much what the name says, advances the secular nature of our government.
She discusses several issues that she was working on at the time; combating faith based initiatives, the Christian embassy at the Pentagon, etc. All disturbing examples of christians ignoring the Constitution and establishing religion within government.
Dan's Pagan Pulpit challenges christians to document what happened on Easter Sunday, referencing their own holy works. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, as well as Acts and 1st Corinthians. As Dan notes, Thomas Paine attempts to do this in The Age of Reason, and he was unable. I had not realized that the gospels varied this much myself, on the holiest of holy christian holidays.