Portnoy’s Complaint

By Philip Roth is such an interesting book.

Alexander Portnoy has gone to see a shrink to whom he narrates the story of his life, how he jerks off several times a day in his socks, in the washrooms and anywhere he thinks he is not being seen.

He tells of his affair with Mary Jane Reed aka The Monkey, of their sexcapades in different European towns and finally his visit to Israel where he his dick fails to rise to the occasion twice.

Alex is godless and one occasion he says about the Protestants

Oh, this father! this kindly, anxious,uncomprehending, constipated father! Doomed to be obstructed by this Holy Protestant Empire! The self confidence and the cunning, the imperiousness and the contacts, all that enabled the blond and blue-eyed of his generation to lead, to inspire, to command, if need be to oppress- he could not summon a hundredth part of it. How could he oppress?- he was the oppressed. How could he wield power?- he was the powerless. How could he enjoy triumph, when he so despised the triumphant-and probably the very idea. They worship a Jew, do you know that, Alex? Their whole big-deal religion is based on worshiping someone who was an established Jew at that time. Now how do you like that for stupidity? How do you like that for pulling the wool over the eyes of the public? Jesus Christ, who they go around telling everybody was God, was actually a Jew! And this fact, that absolutely kills me when I have to think about it, nobody else pays any attention to. That he was a Jew, like you and me, and that they took a Jew and turned him into some kind of God after he is already dead, and then-and this is what can make you absolutely crazy-then the dirty bastards turn around afterwards, and who is the first one on their list to persecute? who haven’t they left their hands off of to murder and to hate for two thousand years? The Jews! who gave them their beloved Jesus to begin with! I assure you, Alex, you are never going to hear such a mishegoss of mixed-up crap and disgusting nonsense as the Christian religion in your entire life. And that’s what these big shots, so-called, believe!

and in another place he says about Christians and Jews

Tacked above the Girardi sink is a picture of Jesus Christ floating up to Heaven in a pink nightgown. How disgusting can human beings be! The Jews I despise for their narrow-mindedness, their self-righteousness, the incredibly bizarre sense that these cave men who are my parents and relatives have somehow gotten of their superiority- but when it comes to tawdriness and cheapness, to beliefs that would shame even a gorilla, you simply cannot top the goyim. What kind of base and brainless schmucks are these people to worship somebody who, number one, never existed, and number two, if he did, looking as he does in that picture, was without a doubt The Pansy of Palestine. In a pageboy haircut, with a Palmolive complexion- and wearing a gown that I realize today must have come from Fredericks of Hollywood! Enough of God and the rest of that garbage! Down with religion and human groveling! Up with socialism and the dignity of man!

I loved this book!

an apology for atheism? Really

On this site we hardly write about public figures unless they are politicians and this is to ask them to stop being idiots politicians and for once act like statesmen and we refer them to the lives of such men as Solon, Lycurgus, Gandhi, Lincoln, Cato and Cicero. We have read a few of Dawkins’ books and they were good reads. We are not writing this in defense of Dawkins, on the contrary, we intend to correct a misrepresentation of atheism not by him of course.

apology a formal written defense of something you believe in strongly

Having dealt with matters definitions, an apology for atheism would be something written with the aim of defending atheism. In this post, Darwin’s non apology is an apologetic for atheism where the OP first gets the name of Dawkins wrong and brings Darwin into a question that has nothing to do with him and lastly drags atheism into the whole picture, as they say, from the backdoor.

We mentioned Dawkins because he wrote a tweet to which he later wrote an apology/ explanation on his site. We have read his apology and we think it is fine. In it, he clearly says to have or not have an abortion is to be made by those concerned. This is the position I think that most reasonable people would hold.

The OP to which we refer to writes, emphasis by us,

Without God, the highest achievement can only be one’s own temporal happiness. Without God, person-hood is endowed on a sliding scale according to a child’s growth toward (or an aging person’s growth away from) usefulness, a “a gradual, ‘fading in/fading’ out definition.” Without God, humanity has no value beyond what some men consider useful, so “the decision to abort can be a moral one.” Without God, there is no objective moral standard for good and evil, right and wrong, yet the moral law written on every fellow human heart created in God’s image compels even atheists to reason about “moral” choices, despite the reductio ad absurdum. That Law on our hearts can be suppressed for a lifetime, but ultimately convicts. Atheism is in every case a temporary state

As we have repeatedly noted, the theist has to demonstrate the following things;

  • what god is
  • whether god is
  • what are objective moral values
  • whether the gods love the pious because it is the pious, or whether the pious is pious only because it is loved by the gods

Having mentioned the above, what other duty has man apart from his happiness, temporal or a-temporal whatever the case maybe. If pro-choice is seen as endowing person-hood with a sliding scale of usefulness, its corollary must be that with god, the value or morality of a woman is dependent mainly on how many number of children she can push into the world regardless of whether they stand a chance in life or not, as long as they are born! I think this is a warped way of thinking.

To write,

without god, humanity has no value beyond what some men consider useful

is to create a strawman of the pro-choice stand. The statement also assumes only the godless abort which every right thinking person knows ain’t the case. The idiots, Islamic State, that are on a killing spree are doing it in the name of a god they believe supports their cause. To tell us that without god such and such is the case is really to be an idiot of the first degree. It is to act like one who is not aware of the things believers to do to each other every day to get ahead.

To the universe, I would hazard, whether there is life or not, would not make a lot of difference, in fact, in a sense, some places would be better without human beings. We have destroyed whole ecosystems, forced animals into extinction and continue to kill each other and the environment without a care for the future.

It is time we must change the statement to read

with god, everything is permitted!

For in most instances, believers have invoked the names of the deities they believe in as they commit crimes or its alter ego.

Dawkins apology has nothing to do with atheism. It says nothing about whether or not there is a reason to not believe in god. It talks about one issue and that is who makes the determination in the case of a pregnant mama. Is it some self righteous idiot who doesn’t know what it means to be pregnant or is it the couple concerned who understand what it means to terminate a pregnancy. This is the question we must ask. It has nothing to do with atheism. You can try to draw atheism into it, but it will not work.

This closing statement

Richard Dawkins’ pro-abortion statements make perfect sense on Atheism, which would make a genuine about-face apology quite unexpected anyway.

must be refuted for Dawkins did not make a statement about god belief or lack thereof. His apology which is in fact an apology, is about his strong held position on pro-choice. It is not pro-abortion. To call it so is a misrepresentation of others who hold onto the same position.

We here conclude that Dawkins did make an apology, this we agree, but it is apology for pro-choice and not atheism. Having said this, I invite anyone who thinks I got it all wrong and that Dawkins apology is in defense of atheism please show me the light, increase my unbelief.

if only….

we had such men as Cassius, though of an ill temper, but critical, we would have made quite some strides against all superstition. In an address to Brutus, he had this to tell him

It is the opinion of our sect[ Epicurian philosophy] that not all that we feel or see is real and true;but that sense is a most slippery and deceitful thing, and the mind yet more quick and subtle to put the sense in motion and affect it with every kind of change upon no real occasion of fact; just as an impression is made upon wax; and the soul of man, which has itself both what imprints and what is imprinted on, may most easily, by its own operations, produce and assume every variety of shape and figure.

[..] It is its nature to to be ever in motion and its motion is fantasy or conception.

[…]But that there should be any such things as supernatural beings, or if there were, that they should have human shape or voice or power that can reach us, there is no reason for believing, though I confess I could wish that there were such beings, that we might not rely upon our arms only and our horses and our navy, all which are numerous and powerful, but might be confident of the assistance of gods also, in this our most sacred and honourable attempt.

Cassius to Brutus in Plutarch Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans

Chronicles of YHWH 13: A Modern Ritual


Upon setting his eyes on a football game for the first time, YHWH consulted Angel Gabriel for an explanation:
YHWH: Why are those 22 men there chasing an inflated piece of cowhide? Is it a sort of ritual? Have they created another god besides me?
Gabriel: It’s a game. They call it football. One team wins, and another loses.
YHWH: Why are they cheering when the cowhide passes some lines on the ground? Are the lines magical?
Gabriel: The lines signify territories. If the ball passes particular lines, it means that one side has struck a goal against the other, which is a victory. Hence the cheers.
YHWH: What sorcery is that? Why don’t the men just take up spears and shields and maul each other to the ground, like real champions?
Gabriel: Most men nowadays consider violence to be uncivilized and archaic. They now engage in such sports as football for recreation and to release their pent up energies.
YHWH: This is an outrage. The men are going soft in their heads. Why, I’ve just seen one of them chase the cowhide to the end of the field, only for another one to run for it, and throw it right back into the field. And they all started running after it, once again. Are they bewitched?
Gabriel: They are following the rules of the game. There is a stipulated time during which the game has to keep going.
YHWH: So why are the fully clothed men on the benches admiring the scantily dressed men on the field? Are the men on the benches homosexual?
Gabriel: They are not admiring the men per se. Not in a sensual way. They are admiring the skills displayed on the field: the tackles, the fouls, the passes, the interceptions, the slants, the midfield game, the inevitable penalties, and the ultimate scoring of goals.
YHWH: What sorts of spoils go to the victors? Do they take land away from those who have lost the game? Do they get to take their women and livestock?
Gabriel: No, the victors simply celebrate their victory on the pitch and in the evening. Tomorrow is another day. Another match. Today’s losers might be tomorrow’s victors. It’s a dynamic arrangement.
YHWH: It sounds totally devoid of sense. And a little deranged.


N/B: For access to all anecdotes in this series, check out List of all “Chronicles of YHWH” notes.

Chronicles of YHWH 12: The Diss


Transcript of a diss between YHWH and Lucifer, carried out over a satellite phone:

YHWH: (Text to Lucifer) //Please call me, thank you. To listen to the new Baqashot hit “Elohim Y’chnakaya Ekogokar” by DJ Enuphinum, send the text “80783” to 4367.//

Lucifer: (Calling back) “What’s up? And have you run out of airtime again?”

YHWH: “I’ve exceeded my credit limit with the phone company. Too many calls. Anyway, how’ve you been? Haven’t heard from you in a while.”

Lucifer: “Been busy. You know, the usual. Fire everywhere. I’m running a bit low on the sulphur and brimstone, though.”

YHWH: “So why are all your names so ridiculous?”

Lucifer: “Huh?”

YHWH: “Take the name “Satan”, for instance. It sounds like it was hit by a train, and died, and is now a zombie name, with parts of it falling off as it limps along.”

Lucifer: “Wait. Did you ask me to call you so that you can diss me? On MY OWN airtime?”

YHWH: “”Lucifer” is another terrible name. It sounds like it fell into the sun, got scorched into a crisp, was revived in an ICU, and now survives through straws and catheters. LOL.”

Lucifer: “I’m going to hang up on you now.”

YHWH: “I bet if your names were personified, they would have two left feet, a bent back, and arthritic joints. And they would be massively incontinent. Ha ha.”

Lucifer: “NKT. Your own name lacks even a single vowel. What’s up with that?”

Long pause.

YHWH (Breathing heavily):  “Leave my name out of this.”

Lucifer: “Ah, so you can say anything you want about my names, but I can’t reciprocate?”

YHWH: “Yes! For I am a vengeful, jealous God, and I won’t have you desecrate my name! Do not take my name in vain!!”


N/B: For access to all anecdotes in this series, check out List of all “Chronicles of YHWH” notes.

to those who are feeling beaten today……

this post is meant to cheer you up 😀

In the Lives by Plutarch, he writes in the life Demosthenes that

to a man’s being happy, it is in the first place requisite he should be born in some ‘famous city’.

He continues to say

but for him who must attain to true happiness, it is of no other disadvantage to be of a mean, obscure country, than to be born of a small or plain looking woman.


Here was a statesman whose stature measures to that of Solon, Themistocles, Lycurgus among others who was sentenced to death by his countrymen because he was too good for them! Plutarch writes

Phocion and he may be well compared together, not for any mere general resemblances, as though we should say both were good men and great statesmen. For, assuredly, there is difference enough among virtues of the same denomination, as between the bravery of Alcibiades and that of Epaminondas, the prudence of Themistocles and that of Aristides, the justice of Numa and that of Agesilaus. But these men’s virtue, even looking to the most minute points of difference, bear the same colour, stamp, and character impressed upon them, so as not to be distinguishable. The mixture is still made in the same exact proportions whether we look at the combination to be found in them, both of lenity on the one hand, with austerity on the other; their boldness upon some occasions, and caution on others; their extreme solicitude for the public, and perfect neglect of themselves; their fixed and immovable bent to all virtuous and honest actions, accompanied with an extreme tenderness and scrupulosity as to doing anything which might appear mean or unworthy; so that we should need a very nice and subtle logic of discrimination to detect and establish the distinctions between them.

A man moderate in his temperament, cool-headed and just. And a good teacher of discipline. Plutarch tells many examples of his justice and temper such as once when he had to take the Greeks to war and one young soldier feeling so brave left his rank and shortly after seeing the enemy developed cold feet, he reproached him thus

Young man, are you not ashamed twice in one day to desert your station; first than on which I placed you and second the one that on which you placed yourself.

On another occasion, one of his friends warns him that by running counter to the people they would kill him, he says

that will be unjust of them if I give them honest advice, if not, it will be just of them.

His wife says in response to a court jester

for my part, all my ornament is my husband Phocion, now for the twentieth year in office as general at Athens.

There are several more examples of instances of his justice, vision, temper and good sense in Plutarch’s lives. The world would be a better place if were ruled by such statesmen.


Interesting answers to interesting questions

In the life of Alexander the great as narrated by Plutarch, he [Plutarch] tells of a scene between Alexander and some Indian philosophers whom he asks each a question and promises to kill any whom he thinks not pertinent to be put to the sword and had one of them as judge. It must be assumed that he was pleased with their answers because he rewarded all of them with presents and let them go.

I will list the questions and their answers.

Q: Who are the most numerous, the dead or the living

A: The living, because those who are dead are not all.

Q: Between the earth and the sea which produced the largest beast

A: The earth for the sea is but a part of it

Q: Which is the cunningest of beasts

A: That which men have not yet found out

Q: What argument was used to Sabbas to persuade him to revolt

A: That he should either live or die nobly

Q: Which was the eldest, day or night

A: Day was the eldest, by one day at least

Q: What should a man do to be extremely beloved

A: He must be very powerful without making himself too much feared

Q: How might a man become a god

A: By doing that which was impossible for men to do

Q: Between life and death, which is stronger

A: Life is stronger than death because it supports many miseries

Q: How long is it decent for a man to live

A: Till death appeared more desirable than life