February 2003 Archives

February 28, 2003

Bible studies in cross stitch

Mira Reisberg has produced some interesting artwork. Take the Ten Plagues of Exodus Wallpaper designs, one for each plague. I quite like death of the Egyptian's first born myself. She's also created a series of Seven Deadly Sins needlepoint canvases which are unlikely to be found in your local needlecrafts shop any time soon. But, if you hadn't already guessed from the Hell Money, she isn't any kind of raving fundamentalist, but is instead informed by her family history:

As a daughter of the holocaust, reconciling Judeo/Christian constructs has been a lifelong dilemma. How do I reconcile the idea of God with my families history? How do I reconcile everyday horror with the beauty I see every day? The goodness of people in the world with the cruelty of people in the world? My own goodness with my own cruelty?

(via Everlasting Blort)

Taking the eruv with the smooth

An eruv is a special enclosure used by Orthodox Jews to symbolically extend the boundary of the home, and therefore permit certain actions, such as pushing a wheelchair, which would not otherwise be allowed on the Sabbath. In other words, it's a legal hack. After much arguing with planning officials, the North West London Eruv is due to go into operation any day now, and as it's fragile, the website provides an eruv status message to warn the observant if a recent inspection has revealed any breach in the eruv. But, as Yoz Grahame has noticed, there's a problem with the warning on the website:

What's that? You can't see it? Ah. That'll be because you're using Mozilla. Or Safari. Or a phone browser. Or anything that isn't MSIE. Or you're running MSIE with Javascript turned off. Or you're a disabled person using a browser with extra accessability features, and now you're really annoyed because the main recipients of the benefits of the eruv are, of course, disabled people. The silliest thing here is that the web page seems to be dynamically-generated anyway (or, at least, hand-edited at least once a week)

Maybe it's to promote other, more profitable, methods of finding out about the eruv's condition? Yoz continues There's also an email and SMS service, though (in classic synagogue style) they seem to be demanding an 18 quid donation for subscription. (via BoingBoing)

Trees to marry

Thailand: a traditional engagement ceremony has been held, except that the happy couple are both trees - a teak tree and a lamduan, the engagement rings made of flowers and vines, and the bride received gifts of rice, peas and pressed fertiliser.

The ceremony began with the boisterous sound of traditional drums, gongs, cymbals, and Thai dancing from the groom's khan mark procession.
The ladies who carried the khan mark (present trays) wore leaves and flowers in their bodies and hair...
...The procession moved to where a match-maker and two ageing couples, pretending to be the bride and groom's parents, were seated.
Negotiations started with the groom's parents asking the bride's parents for their daughter Lamduan. After the deal was made, presents were handed to the bride's parents. Then two sides tied rings to the trunks of the trees, completing their engagement.

The ritual was designed to promote love of plants and nature, and the trees will be married on 8th March. Trees engaged in Thai-style ceremony to promote nature - Bangkok Post, 28th February 2003.

Pilgrims resist paying to see relics

India: a crude attempt by the Patna Museum to exploit Buddhist pilgrims has backfired. Since the charge to view the holy ashes of Lord Buddha was raised from Rs. 10 (€0.19/13p) to Rs.100 (€1.94/£1.34) on 11th January, only 300 people have paid up, mostly non-Buddhist tourists. The rest of the museum charges an entrance fee of Rs. 5 (€0.10/7p) and sees 400 vistors per day.

Earlier, a proposal was made for keeping the entrance fee at Rs 10, but it was rejected by the government, since the entrance fee of Rs 100 is aimed at getting more revenue by attracting Buddhist pilgrims from Asian countries.The casket having priceless holy ashes, and kept on the first floor of the Patna museum since January 11, contains Lord Buddhaç—´ ashes mixed with clay, a copper punch-marked coin and a tiny leaf made of gold. Noted archaeologist A S Altekar had discovered the casket in 1958 during the excavation at Raja Vishal Ka Garh now in Vaishali district. The excavation was conducted by Kashi Prasad Jayaswal Research Institute.

Holy ashes fail to attract pilgrims - Times of India, 28th February 2003.

Islamic terrorist a phony?

New Zealand: cyanide-laced letters have been sent to the British High Commission in Wellington, ostensibly by an Islamic terroist group calling itself September 11, but police are investigating whether they are an attempt to stir up hatred against Muslims. A linguist and international terror experts have noted that the letter is full of deliberate grammatical errors, as well as errors about Islam that a genuine Muslim believer would not make.

Auckland University School of Asian studies senior lecturer Tim Behrend said the letters seemed very transparent and like an incredibly bad effort.
They don't appear to have been written by a non-native speaker of English or someone who is accustomed to being around non-native English speakers.
What I see here is someone who is mimicking a foreign voice.

The Muslim community in New Zealand and under intense pressure. A number of their religious leaders have already pointed out that the manner in which the letters have been signed make absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Chief among them was the signature, Abd Allah September 11. Abd in Arabic means servant and Allah God, but the way this had been written was incorrect.
A Muslim would not write it like this, said an Arab immigrant.
All in a row, Abd Allah September 11. No, nonsense. It's written wrongly. He can't say Abd Allah and later say September 11. It can't be, it makes no sense.
As a phrase the two words are meaningless and it cannot be a name because Muslims cannot take the name Allah.

British diplomats were cyanide target - Stuff, 28th February 2003; Police can't say if cyanide letter 'anti-Muslim stirring' - Stuff, 28th February 2003; Experts say cyanide letter writer pretending to be Muslim - Stuff, 28th February 2003.

February 24, 2003

An African Ripper?

Tanzania: A mob surrounded a police station in Mbeya demanding a suspect be handed over to them, but police have denied arresting anyone carrying women's breasts in a plastic bag. There has been a series of gruesome murders in the region which have been linked to witchcraft.

Some body parts are reportedly needed for planting special protective charms in business. The killings of women have been linked to witchcraft beliefs. People believe people who have consulted witch doctors do the killings.

The murders themselves sound like the work of a sociopath.

Incidents of killings of women are increasing in Mbeya Region, whereby four women have been killed and their bodies found with breasts, hearts and private parts missing. The women were killed after they were raped.

Police deny arresting suspect carrying woman breastsThe Guardian (Tanzania), 25th February 2003.

Scottish Pagans Refute Allegations Of Involvement In Attacks On Horses

Scotland: Below is the Pagan Federation's statement on the horse attacks from a few months ago. While we're at it, John Macintyre would like to point out (as if we hadn't guessed) that he did not describe himself as Scotland's chief Pagan—that was the press.

Cleric guilty of soliciting murder

An extremist Muslim cleric has been found guilty of three charges of soliciting murder, two of using threatening behavious and one of distributing threatening material at the Old Bailey. Sheik Abdullah al-Faisal had recorded and sold tapes in which he urged young Muslims to go out and kill non-believers, Americans, Hindus and Jews.

Initially, the defence planned to call another controversial cleric, Abu Hamza, as a witness.

Unknown to the jury, Hamza appeared before the judge during a pre-trial hearing to outline his evidence.
However, the defence decided to drop him as a witness during the month-long case as Hamza's antics caused more and more embarrassing headlines.

He was acquitted on two charges of soliciting murder and one of posessing threatening material. Cleric guilty of spreading hate - BBC News, 24th February 2003.

Spelling it out

Kenya: A government minister has laughed off attempts to bewitch him by people who misappropriated local authority funds.

He caused laughter during a meeting with chief officers, civic leaders and staff at the Kwale County Hall when he said some culprits may even try to bewitch him.
Some of those who have had a hand in stealing from Government coffers will try to use all means, including witchcraft, to evade detection but they will fail this time around, he warned.
The Minister said since his appointment to the Cabinet, he had lost weight due to his busy schedule.

He used the meeting to announce that, in future, only lawyers would be eligible for the position of Town Clerk. Govt will only hire lawyers as Town Clerks, says Maitha - East African Standard, 24th February 2003.

Bargain of the Day: Scripture Smarties

TRANSFORM ANY OCCASION INTO A WITNESS OPPORTUNITY with Scripture Smarties:

Smarties with Scripture are fun. Each 8 oz. bag contains approximately 32 pieces and each candy piece is individually wrapped with KJV Scripture Verse.

Girl killed in place of 'witch' mother

Ghana: A farm labourer has been remanded in custody after he allegedly murdered his four-year-old daughter by butchering her into pieces.

[Afua] Kusasi initially sought to kill his wife Azuma Kusasi, for being a witch, but substituted his daughter Afua when Azuma sneaked out of the house.
The accused, who lives at Acquaye-Allah village in the Aowin-Suaman District of the Western Region, is further alleged to have sacrificed two dogs and two fouls after the incident.

Labourer Butchers Daughter - GhanaWeb General News, 22nd February 2003.

Improved RSS feeds

MacOS X comes with a 'lite' version of NetNewsWire - a nice RSS aggregator. Patrick Neilsen-Hayden had the same problem I had, and Alison Scott mentioned some alternative templates, so now the RSS feeds come with the full text of the articles, and not just the first 20 words.

Sauce for the goose...

(or, oh how I wish this had been Newfoundland!)

A Canadian provincial court has decided to treat The Bible like all other literature, and has ruled that certain parts of it are hate speech in particular contexts. Three gay men submitted a complaint about an advertisment placed in two newspapers which emphasised four Bible verses which call for homosexuals to be killed. The court agreed that this exposed the complainants to hatred, ridicule, and their dignity was affronted on the basis of their sexual orientation.

Justice J. Barclay wrote in his opinion that the human-rights panel was correct in concluding that the advertisement can objectively be seen as exposing homosexuals to hatred or ridicule.

When the use of the circle and slash is combined with the passages of the Bible, it exposes homosexuals to detestation, vilification and disgrace, Barclay said. In other words, the biblical passage which suggests that if a man lies with a man they must be put to death exposes homosexuals to hatred.

Bible verses regarded as hate literatureWorldNetDaily (loony fundies and alleged distorters of the truth), 18th February 2003; Parts of Bible ruled hate speech in CanadaMetafilter, 23rd February 2003.

February 23, 2003

Now it's the men's turn

More than 250 men stripped off and lay in formation to spell out Peace Man to protest about Australia's involvement in the planned war. The demonstrators were entertained by Puppetry of the Penis.

Co-organiser Cameron Sparkes-Carroll said the protesters weren't afraid to bare their manhood to denounce small men with big guns.
We were also making an ironic comment about the small man syndrome that leads to the need for big guns, he said.

Men's turn for naked protest - HeraldSun, 24th February 2003.

On the same topic, TV Smith has released his anti-war song Not In My Name as a free MP3 download. The song has proved popular during his live performances but apparently he didn't want to be seen to profit from the war by releasing it as a conventional single (via Avedon Carol's The Sideshow).

Grave robbers thoroughly cursed.

Theives who desecrated 22 graves to steal valuables buried with the bodies have been cursed in an unusual multifaith ceremony in Malaysia.

The ceremony, believed to be the first of its kind in the state, began with a Christian prayer for the souls of the Christians.
Then the Miring ceremony followed for the pagan Ibans with a slaughter of a 100kg boar.
Then a grim-faced elderly man, Enggol anak Dingon, rose up and began to invoke the Antu Gerasi and Antu Remaung, both very much feared ferocious ghosts to go after the guilty ones to break them up from limb to limb, tear out their hearts and eat them.
He also called on the benevolent Petara to bless the living with better harvest, health, jobs and more duit and ringgit
Then he invited the 12 longhouse chiefs to sprinkle yellow rice and this was was also done by the relatives concerned.

Ibans From 12 Longhouses Put Curse On Grave Thieves - Bernama, 23rd February 2003.

Clerical Abuse in New Zealand

A counsellor in New Zealand is leading calls for an independent body to be set up to investigate allegations of abuse by Catholic clergy. Brent Cherry said that many victims had lost confidence in the church and were reluctant to come forward. The call comes as New Zealand's Catholic leaders meet to revise their protocol for handling allegations three years earlier than planned. In particular they will discuss the merits and problems of both legalistic and pastoral approaches. Call for independent body for clergy sex complaints - Stuff, 22nd February 2003.

February 21, 2003

It was the Jews after all.

I got stuck in the snow in Boston on Monday, so I found nellsterr's parody on alt.conspiracy, Israel KNEW about blizzard!, rather amusing:

Well well well, what's this? It looks like Sharon knew about the snow to hit the East Coast, killing over 50 people, and did NOTHING about it.
Why isn't Herr Shrub and his dictatorship investigating this? Could it be that he's being blackmailed by Sharon and his ZOG machine? Just how much money does has Israel squeezed from him anyway? They must have SOMETHING on the Shrub family.
No doubt the shills will spout their usual garbage at this, but too bad. People are finally starting to realize what's going on out there and it's about time.

Spooky snipper

A clairvoyant has confirmed that an invisible genie was responsible for circumcising a 10-month old baby in Indonesia while his mother was cooking breakfast.

When I heard Riyan crying, I went straight to his bedroom and couldn't believe what my eyes saw, Riyan's mother, identified only as Ineng, told Antara. He had been circumcised.

'Genie' blamed for mysterious circumcision - IOL, 20th February 2003.

All Hail King John!

Scotland: The Herald's reporters are confused. The Prattle first reported that Pagans had been blamed for a series of weird attacks on horses back in October, though it turned out to be a combination of King Kevin and the over-active imaginations of a few journalists. The SSPCA subsequently apologised for linking Pagans to the attacks, but no-one told The Herald.

According to David Montgomery in today's paper, an expert in religiously motivated crime has been called in by animal welfare workers to help investigate a series of attacks on horses that may be linked to the occult calendar and connected with the work of shamans or witch doctors.

Someone looked at statistics for various attacks and they seemed to start in October and end at Easter. This might tally with the occult calendar, said [Doreen Graham, a spokeswoman for the SSPCA]. The god of the horse is Mars, and the day that relates to Mars is Tuesday. Some of the attacks happened late on a Monday night or early on a Tuesday.

Easter is a well-known Pagan holiday, yet no-one seems to have made a connection with those months being dark, something even a nutter (the most likely suspect) will notice.

The SSPCA inquiry, being run jointly with the RSPCA in England, will continue until December, after which Dr Hoskins and John MacIntyre, the chief pagan for Scotland, will analyse the results.

The Pagan Federation's representative for Scotland was unavailable for comment on his sudden promotion. Occult expert in hunt for horse attackersThe Herald, 21st February 2003.

Amusing timewaster

Reasonably Clever's LEGO Tarot modestly describes itself as Possibly the goofiest attempt at a custom-made tarot deck. Ever. You can't buy it - the creator created all 72 cards for their own personal enjoyment - but it's a well-done variation on the Rider-Waite deck.

Legends of Jersey

BBC Jersey has produced Things that go bump in the night..., a web page all about the island's folklore. The story of The Witches of Rocqueberg has certain parallels with better-known Scottish faerie tales, but the tale of Geoffrey's Leap is positively Darwinian!

No-one really knows who Geoffrey is, but we know that he committed a crime - and that his punishment was to be thrown off a high rock at Anne Port.
Crowds came to watch Geoffrey die, and the executioner hurled him off the rock. But Geoffrey survived, and swam ashore.
Some of the crowd argued that he should be allowed to live, and others that he should be thrown off again.
Geoffrey settled the argument, by saying that he would jump off the rock himself to show how easy it was. But this time, Geoffrey hit the rocks below, and died.

While there, check out the recipe for Black Butter, which has no folkloric connection that I know of, but is lovely stuff. (Thanks, indirectly, Simon).

February 20, 2003

Separation of church and state permits abuse, claims archdiocese.

An attempt by the Archdiocese of Boston to prevent them being sued over the child abuse scandal by using the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States has failed.

The Boston Archdiocese, home to about 2.1 million Catholics, argued that the separation of church and state prevented civil courts from making judgments on how it supervised priests. The archdiocese made the claim, in part, to satisfy insurance carriers that it was making an exhaustive legal effort to avoid big-ticket judgments.

The Archdiocese is accused of deliberately covering-up claims of abuse by its priests and of moving abusive priests to other parishes without warning their new congregations. Judge Rejects First Amendment Claim by Church - AZCentral, 20th February 2003 (personally I blame Mike Holmes for drawing this to my attention).

Bargain of the Day: Jesus lamb plushie

This is Brand New and would make the Cutest Gift!, apparently.

This Little Lamb has Jesus Loves Me embroidered in it's tummy + Plus + When you squeeze it's tummy - it sings the words Yes, Jesus Loves Me! - Yes, Jesus Loves Me! - Yes, Jesus Loves Me! The Bible Tells Me So! There is a Key Chain attached that you could leave on or remove. The tag says it's not for children under the age of 5. Suggested retail 3.99.
This comes from a smoke-free home.

The same vendor is also selling this chalkware Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread ceramic thing.

Bearing false witness

It's not South Africa Day at the Prattle, honest. An evangelist is giving a series of lectures in Durban all about his Satanic fantasies in an attempt to convert the gullible to his particular cult. He told reporters My job is to educate people about Satanism, but continued:

To enter into an official Satanic church, you've got to do something criminal. This can include drug dealing, sex with minors, kidnapping and animal and human sacrifice, he said.

And his evidence? None - just believe him, okay?

In many Satanic crimes, a lot of evidence is destroyed by police and parents because they don't know what to look for.

You can get out of Satanism, says evangelist - IOL, 19th February 2003.

Juvenile delinquency

Twenty-one youths aged between 13 and 17 have been arrested after an elderly woman's house burned down.

Ntobeng Phala, police spokesperson, says a group of about 100 youths approached a 74-year-old woman last night and accused her of witchcraft. The group allegedly set her house alight, burning it to ashes. The woman managed to escape.

More arrests are expected. More than 20 arrested after house is burnt down - SABC News, 20th February 2003.

Thou shalt not suffer a poisoner...

A South African labourer faces culpable homicide charges after he allegedly supplied a poison to a family which killed two boys and sixteen animals. The deaths were originally blamed on witchcraft. Labourer gave killer chemical - News24, 19th February 2003.

Hankies not necessary

The Banchory Morris Men, based near Aberdeen, are short on members because Scots men are too embarrassed to be seen dressing up in silly clothes, wearing bells, and hitting sticks in time to accordion music. The BBC News story gives a potted history of Morris dancing, including earlier Scottish incarnations:

Certainly the Morris Men say there was indigenous Morris Dancing in Scotland, until the early seventeenth century.
Neil Bayfield said it was banned by the Scottish kirk for being too much fun.

But the BBC's description of the Banchory side as Scotland's only Morris troupe falls well short of their usual accuracy - they're Scotland's only Cotswold side. The Morris Federation lists a number of sides dancing other traditions, including the Edinburgh-based Jenny Geddes Clog Morris, a mixed North West side (also in need of new members - follow the link for contact information, or mail me about it) Dancers urged to make the leap - BBC News, 18th February 2003.

February 19, 2003

Jesus asked to demean self by acting as lawyer.

A man accused of tampering with a judge in Missouri has asked to have Jesus Christ represent him in court.

Richard John Adams requested Jesus Christ as his trial attorney during a hearing Wednesday on tampering charges. Adams, who described himself as a patriot and a Christian, says lawyers are devils who are trying to undermine the Constitution.

Unfortunately, the Son of God is unqualified and only a lawful attorney may represent defendents in Missouri's courts. Accused man requests Jesus Christ as trial attorney - ABC7 Chicago, 13th February 2003.

Presidential paranoia

The situation in Venuzuela is getting worse, and according to Gustavo Coronel, the President is going a little batty:

As the economy collapses around us the President has gone into a frantic campaign on national TV. Compulsory "hook ups" are now daily affairs, in which the President will talk about anything, including the attempts made by voodoo witches to do a job on him. The President firmly believes in witchcraft and has developed a personal religion which is a mixture of Catholicism, voodoo and Marxism.

The writer has US connections and his words should be treated with suspicion unless you saw the broadcasts live. This editorial by Ted Rall exposes the level of self-censorship in the US media, and how vital facts are left out of their reports--facts which completely change the story.

The American media has, for example, devoted extensive coverage to political unrest in Venezuela, where mobs loyal to President Hugo Chávez have clashed with striking employees of the state oil company. The crisis sparked an attempted coup d'état in April 2002. To busy Americans, this looks like a simple story of a right-wing Latin American dictator crushing poor workers. That's because three key facts are regularly omitted from the story. First, the oil company strike was called by its wealthy managers, not its workers. Second, Chávez was democratically-elected. Third, the coup plotters were backed by the Bush Administration. We were sending informal, subtle signals that we don't like this guy, said a U.S. Defense Department official quoted in The Guardian, an English paper that has become an important post-9/11 resource for Americans in search of objective reporting. The bully, it turns out, is us--not Chávez, who is standing up for his nation's poor.

A Chronicle of the Dark Ages - VHeadline.com, 18th February 2003; What they don't tell us - Yahoo! News, 17th February 2003.

February 18, 2003

Aura diagnosis device invented.

A Russian doctor has invented a new device based on the Kirilian effect which he claims shows the aura and allows him to diagnose various illnesses with 90% accuracy. The method, called gas-discharge visualization, uses an electromagnetic field to make biological radiation of human body surface visible.

Then, a schematic picture of a human being appears on the screen, while around it, a blue-yellow-red line corresponding with the body shape could be seen. If the line has no breaches, if it is even, the patient is absolutely healthy. Though, if there are some breaches and splashes, this signifies some pathological process in an organ.
Malakhov, a famous Russian extrasensory individual, calls changes like that karma dissemination. Some of them are latent, while others, by penetrating to the physical body, cause one or another function breach.
For example, a splash over the head witnesses energy standstill which can cause headaches. The same splash near the liver means the person has gall-stones.
According to Malakhov, people should get rid of different field pollution forms, otherwise the latter could for sure cause an illness and reduce life and creative abilities.

Device Allowing to See an Individual's Energy Field Invented - Pravda, 18th February 2003.

Bugs Bunny in Satanic abuse horror!

In a presentation to the national meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, psychologist Elizabeth Loftus revealed her recipe to get people to remember things that aren't true. She explained how a third of people 'remembered' being hugged by Bugs Bunny at Disneyland (Bugs Bunny is not a Disney character) after the false memory was implanted.

A key to inducing memories, researchers said, is to add elements of touch, taste, sound and smell to the story.

In the Bugs Bunny research, Loftus talked with subjects about their childhood memories and asked not only whether they saw someone dressed up as the character, but also whether they hugged his furry body and stroked his velvety ears.

In subsequent interviews, 36 percent of the subjects recalled the cartoon rabbit.

Suggestion recipe makes false memories realCape Argus (via IOL), 17th February 2003.

February 16, 2003

School to be educated about law

The Pagan parents of a child in Tennessee have sued the local school board after constant harassment, violence and ostracism led their daughter to become suicidal and need treatment for anxiety. The school also forced her to attend (illegal) Bible classes, and constantly tried to persuade her to attend fundamentalist rallies during school hours. Union schools hit with religion-related lawsuit - Knox News, 14th February 2003. Comment on this story can be found at morons.org and Wren's Nest.

February 13, 2003

The Death Star, actually

390,000 people in England and Wales answered the controversial religion question on the 2001 census forms with 'Jedi'. The response was most popular in Brighton and Hove, where 2.6% of respondents claimed it as their religion. Census returns of the Jedi - BBC News, 13th February 2003.

Christians roasting on an open fire, lions nibbling at their toes...

Picked up a copy of the latest Weekly World News last night, because of the headline: Saddam feeds Christians to lions and a picture of a special non-shadow casting lion looming over a shadow-casting man (and looking somewhere else entirely). The 'story' comes from a missionary, so it must be true.

In another story, we learn that crop circles are post-it notes for aliens and Stonehenge is part of a worldwide network of markers and road maps for space travelers. Most importantly, the US National Security Agency uses the codes themselves to communicate with exrtraterrestrial travellers:

NSA uses crop circle memos to warn UFO pilots of upcoming spaceshots. We don't want a UFO crashing into a space shuttle.

It's nearly as good as Pravda!

February 12, 2003

So where did they put the cuckoo?

Analysis of the teeth of a man buried near Stonhenge show that he came from an area which is now Switzerland and Germany, raising interesting questions about who built the monument. The Amesbury Archer lived at the time of Stonhenge's construction. 'King of Stonehenge' hailed from the Alps - New Scientist, 11th February 2003.

It's all in the mind

Out-of-body experiences, alien abductions and similar phenomena might just be products of the brain. Ontario-based neuroscientist Michael Persinger has managed to produce these effects by subjecting the temporal lobes to magnetic fields.

Similarly, the September 19, 2002, issue of Nature reported that neuroscientist Olaf Blanke of Geneva University Hospital in Switzerland and his colleagues were able to bring about out-of-body experiences through electrical stimulation of the right angular gyrus in the temporal lobe of a 43-year-old woman suffering from severe epileptic seizures. With initial mild stimulation, she felt she was sinking into the bed or falling from a height. With more intense stimulation, she said she could see myself lying in bed, from above, but I only see my legs and lower trunk. Another trial induced an instantaneous feeling of 'lightness' and 'floating' about two meters above the bed, close to the ceiling.

Demon-Haunted Brain - Scientific American, March 2003.

February 11, 2003

Bargain of the Day: Om tat

Om Planet sells

OM Symbol Auto Emblems
OM Stickers, Decals, and other OM items
Sacred and Beloved OM symbol for the Hindu, Buddhist, and practitioner of yoga
affixes to your auto in a similar way to the Darwin, fish and dove emblems
available in gold and silver matte and chrome.

Found via an advert in Spirit of Change - New England's Holistic magazine.

February 9, 2003

Slow week coming

Entries are likely to be sparse over the coming days. Normal service will resume in just over a week.

February 8, 2003

War is pants

In Australia, 750 naked women formed a love heart surrounding the words NO WAR to protest the presence of Australian troops in the Middle East. (Photo) - Associated Press, 8th February 2003.

Of course, some people see far more into this increasingly common form of protest. BLK KAT told a number of newsgroups, including alt.conspiracy and alt.pagan that the picture showed that Witchs Back Saddam Hussein, and provided a fresh caption: Witches dance naked in unholy circle to try and conjure up a protective spell to keep their warlock hero safe.

February 7, 2003

Supersition in strange places?

I went to Boots to buy some hair dye the other day. The dye is normally £9.99, but they were offering a third off which is why it cost £6.65.

Yet More Shuttle Silliness

It's amazing what some people see in the artifacts you get when you over-process a low-resolution image. Wiolawa Press specialises in Extraterrestrial ART in Nature and has been quick to analyse Shuttle photos as they appeared on news websites. First, an analysis of a picture in the Louisville Courier:

this image has been from the one cut above and taken to desaturation.. black and white and enlarged to 1472 pixels per inch.. i believe from what im observing the SHUTTLE crew that survived were taken off the blown ship.. and you should be able to see what are called the BEKS ( little doctors of the ORIONS- who currently reside on earth i.e. under and above) probably administering to those who have injuries.. it is easy to see also on this image that one of the females is climbing out of one of the ships..probably from below to climb to the ship above to be rescued....... i think you will see there is alot happening in this photo enlargement, including CRITTERS you have never seen before.. from the LOUISVILLE PAPER PHOTO!!.. my take is that the ORIONS have taken the astronauts who survived.. however, i have no idea where they are taking them.. i suggest others do an analysis also and see what you observe and can find.. to verify these remarks.. ALSO THE CIRCULAR DISKS SEEM TO BE THE BEKS VEHICLES FOR INSPECTING THE SHIP AND ADMINISTERING TO THOSE WHO SURVIVED.. THE CIRCULAR VEHICLES ARE NOT DEBRIS!!!>> ah ho Wiolawa

And of an image published by CNN. This page has an exciting-sounding link to the analysis of the ILLUMINATI METHODICAL PLANNING BEHIND THIS HORRIFIC EVENT By S. Swerdlow, where we learn that the disaster was the Global Ceremony for the Iraq war and staged alien invasion, both leading to the NWO and the New World Religion.. He cites a long list of 'evidence' including:

* This was the 113th space shuttle flight.
* Columbia has been flying for 22 years (twinning).
* The shuttle took off on 01-16-2003, which equals a number 13.
* Ft. Hood, Texas is sending a recovery team calling it a 24/7 operation, which equals a number 13.
* CNN used a local station "13" in Florida to cover Cape Canaveral.
* The runway to which it was heading is Runway # 33 which is 3 miles long.
* 02-01-03 leaves 333 days in this year.
* The event took place on the exact anniversary week of the Challenger accident in 1986.
* The event took place on the date of the Chinese New Year.
* The event took place on the date of a New Moon.
* Challenger exploded while taking off; Columbia exploded while landing--a completion cycle.

I wonder which Chinese New Year took place when it wasn't the New Moon. Meanwhile, New World Disorder is tracking Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster Conspiracies, Anomalies and Oddities.

Japanese Balls

Japan: Observatories in western Japan have been swamped with calls from people who saw a glowing ball in the sky on Thursday night.

Moving from west to east across the sky, the initial fireball split into three before disappearing.

It was white at first and then turned yellow. It was like watching the headlights of a truck from a long distance. I thought it must have been a meteor, but I was shocked as I'd never experienced anything like this before, said Yoshitaka Hazenoki, a member of the board of education in the Wakayama Prefecture city of Arita.

Astronomers think it was probably a meteor which fell into the Pacific Ocean. The Mainichi Shimbun also received reports from Kitakyushu of a bright red light with a tail traveling across the sky in an easterly direction.

Great balls of fire, is that a UFO? - Mainichi Daily News, 7th February 2003.

It's not just the Roman Catholic Church, no. 385665

A Zambian pastor has been sentenced to five years' imprisonment with hard labour for the sexual abuse of a 14-year-old girl.

The court heard that on December 20, last year, (Pastor Jonathan) Mwansa took the girl, who wanted him to pray for a sick child, to his home in Natuseko township where he was conducting healing sessions to other sick people.
The pastor encouraged the girl who was supposed to go with him to her parents home to pray for the sick to stay for a night at his house.
She was later in the night defiled by Mwansa on his bed, which he had shared with her and his step daughter after telling her that his action was prompted by a prophecy he had received.
After defiling her, he left the bedroom and went to continue with his healing prayers to the sick people who were gathered in the sitting room.

Pastor Jailed for Defilement - The Times of Zambia (via allAfrica.com), 6th February 2003.

Bargain of the Day: Names of God clock

The Bible forbids the observing of times, but that didn't stop these people making Praise God Time.

This beautiful 13" molded plastic clock is adorned with the 12 names of GOD used in the Old Testament and New Testament. Most modern Bibles have converted all these names to simply say GOD. It is important to realize the different names and the context in which they are used. These 12 names will give you a more intimate relationship with GOD and more power in your prayers...
At the top of the hour your Praise GOD Time clock will sound with PRAISE GOD, As a reminder to Praise HIS name and be thankful for all your blessings. Also as a reminder to say a prayer for those in need, to Praise GOD and ask for daily guidance from Our Father.

(via Jesus Museum)

God Hates Phallic Symbols

United States: Fred Phelps has got in on the Shuttle bandwagon with a PDF flyer Listen up, America! Here is OUR report on Colombia: The 7 are in Hell. According to Phelps, God deliberately destroyed a symbol of America's technical superiority over East Texas -- home of fag-enabler Bush, presumably a reference to the President's mother Barbara because I can't see how that description could possibly be applied to George W.

Any other interpretation of the tragic events of Feb. 1 is rank atheism and fagjunk theology by sodomite propagandists.

Nothing to do with having a Hindu and a Jew on board here. Nope, God is pissed off because no-one has killed all the pooves yet, and priest, preachers and rabbis have the temerity to dabble in religion:

America is a sodomite nation, incapable of repenting... From Bush down -- preachers. priests, rabbis, politicians, pundits, reported -- all suddenly became theologians preaching lies and spinning fables about the meaning of the space shuttle tragedy. God's Arm hurled Columbia in fragments to the ground, and hurled the 7 fools into the verlasting fires of Hell -- in wrath and vengeance, laughing, mocking and deriding this nation of fags.

If a God like this really existed, I donate my soul to Satan.

Priest sentenced for abuse

A Georgia priest has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for sexually abusing two brothers. The court heard that Rev. Wayland Brow was a serial molester who abused several boys throughout the 1970s and 1980s and had been ordained even though doubts were expressed as to his suitablility for the priesthood. Georgia priest sentenced to 10 years for sexually abusing two brothers - Associated Press (via NJ.com), 7th February 2003.

A bad case of denial

Sometimes, people who claim to share your religion will do something really horrid, and you have to deal with it. When it seems that the rest of the world has trouble differentiating between lunatic extremists and the mainstream within a particular faith, coming to terms with it can be much harder. For one Muslim, Mohsin, the solution is obvious: BenLaden is a Jew.

I know some of you may very well be shocked. But okay now when we have to speak the truth we have to speak the truth. Bin Laden or perhaps Ben Laden is a Jew, where is the proof, the proof is out there you only need to be a bit intelligent to decode the information that is all... Learn to user your brain and learn not to be mice when it is the time to do so. For my proof you need to wait for a while insha Allah we will pass it on to you at the right time.

After all, he can't be a Muslim, can he? Please?

What is more amazing is the fact that these bad guys have affected the minds of the whole world effectively. Like when you watch a documentary about AlQaeda Muslims believe Christians are bad guys, Christians believe Muslims are mad. They have created a world of zombies everywhere, many AlQaeda people wander around the world without restrictions, not many people would know that (will insha Allah give you proof later). BenLaden has very good contact with Yemenies Yemen is the place where Jews are growing extremism for Muslims in middle east, they would live, eat, sleep as Muslims but they still don t want Islam. They have altered Islamic text and Islamic culture.

He does ask the right question: how can BenLaden attack someone from the back and be a good Muslim?, but does not countenace the idea that there could be such a thing as a bad Muslim, as if they're somehow exempt from being human.

February 6, 2003

Bullets more effective than pins

A man who killed his suicidal spiritual mentor at his own request has been jailed for at least 12 years in Wisconsin. Greg Friesner admitted shooting Santeria high priest Mark Foster in order to inherit his soul and title. The two men also arranged for Foster to collect on Friesner's life insurance. Man pleads guilty in Wisconsin voodoo slaying - Duluth News Tribune, 28th January 2003.

Today's Shuttle nonsense

Dead people - live on TV.

A US TV channel is to show a pay-per-view seance during which psychics will attempt to contact Princess Diana. The $9 show will be shown on March 9th and features interviews with unbiased observers such as Mohammed al-Fayed and Andrew Morton. It will be broadcast live from London and features mediums who had regular contact with Diana. US cable channel to screen Diana seance - Ananova, 6th February 2003.

Virgin sits on the fence

A spontaneous image on a Sydney fencepost is causing quite a stir among local Catholics who think it resembles the Virgin Mary. But there is dissent - psychic Bronwyn Wilson thinks it's Mother Teresa and a British visitor called Ric said I personally think it's a lot of rubbish - it's just a fence. Virgin Mary seen on Aussie beach fence post - IOL, 6th February 2003.

Who polices the police?

A priest convicted of molesting a 12-year-old altar girl was once responsible for investigating claims of child abuse by clergy. Priest who once investigated abuse cases convicted of molesting girl - Associated Press (via NJ.com), 6th February 2003.

February 5, 2003

Suckers

Malawians are still terrified by tales of government-sponsored vampires roaming the country and murdering people a decade after the leader who was supposed to have sponsored them was deposed.

Many Malawians, especially in the country's rural south, believe in reports that teams of blood suckers are murdering poor people on a nightly basis, draining their blood and selling it to international aid agencies in return for food.

Last month, a member of the ruling United Democratic Front was beaten by residents of a small town after he was accused of harbouring the vampires. The government has said there is no evidence that the vampires exist and has banned spreading of the rumour. But the Central African Presbyterian Church has called for an enquiry, not on how to deal with silly supersitions but to investigate the allegations of blood-sucking. Vampire rumours continue to spread in Malawi - IOL, 5th February 2003.

Bounce for Peace

The Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, best known for Transcendental Mediation, has offered to reveal his Vedic technologies of consciousness to eliminate "karma" to the World's governments as a short cut to permanent world peace. The solution seems to be to install a theocracy based on his beliefs:

Maharishi explained to the press that the cause of all problems gripping the world can be located in the man-made constitutions that administer all governments. Such constitutions were conceived by a small group of founders of a nation, and therefore are rife with human weaknesses and failings. Man-made constitutions will never be able to administer God-made creation, Maharishi said. Human existence, entire nations, and the galactic universe are all God-made. The administration of the God-made creation has to be God-made - it has to be the Administration of Natural Law, which governs the infinite diversity of the universe with perfect order. Such a supreme level of administration is now available to every government through the Global Country of World Peace.

This is no different from the attempts by extremists of other religions to bring about world peace by forcing everyone to agree with them, and killing those who don't! MAHARISHI REVEALS TECHNOLOGIES TO CREATE PREVENTION-ORENTED, PROBLEM-FREE ADMINISTRATION - Maharishi's Global Country of World Peace in Great Britain Press Release, 4th February 2003.

Child dies after father does nothing.

United States: A nine-year-old Philadelphia boy has died of leukaemia because his father chose to pray because he believes that going to a doctor is to serve Satan. The boy's mother died last August as a result of an infection after a miscarriage. Authorities have yet to decide whether to press charges.

Northeast Phila. boy died of leukemia; D.A. 'reviewing the facts'Philadelphia Daily News, 5th February 2003.

February 4, 2003

At last!

'Burr' has come up with an interesting theory which is very similar to the Prattle's joke conspiracy. In Flash Shuttle (in alt.conspiracy.area51) , he tells us

Rumor has it that the shuttle hit a spaceship in route to Iraq with fresh supplies for the up coming war of the worlds.
   The AP will release the story tomorrow evening. This adds to the story that Saddam has "very" high friends and that God is going to be on his side, he may end up running the world.

This one will run and run...

Did inhabitants of approaching Planet X shoot down Columbia??? asks the charmingly-named FightinWhitey2 on alt.conspiracy.

Is it possible that the orbiting astronauts were far enough away to eyewitness the approaching Planet X??
     Perhaps the Greys didn't want the fact that Planet X is closing in to get back to us earthlings...

Our impending doom at the hands of this mysterious planet has been discussed in the Prattle on 1st January 2003 and 18th August 2002. The Light of Truth wants us to know that Aliens shot down Columbia. Aliens who are capable of interstellar travel, but have no knowledge of how to re-enter a planet's atmosphere.

According to sources within NASA the space shuttle Columbia was shot down by aliens. Officials within the space agency have confirmed the fact that an extra-terrestrial ship was picked up by NORAD while it was rising out of the Earth's atmosphere during the descent of Columbia.
According to the best guesses of NASA officials, the occupants of the alien ship may have misinterpreted Columbias descent as an attack maneuver. NORAD tracking and military satellites picked up an energy signature that registered as a heat spike. This heat spike was believed to be some sort of Directed Energy Weapon(DEW), possibly a laser or some sort of advanced particle beam fired by the alien ship. The beam created by the Directed Energy Weapon struck the underside of the Columbia's left wing.

News of this attack has been classified Top Secret because we couldn't cope with it.

The most obvious reaction described in the report would be a massive world-wide panic that would tear apart civilization at the seams; individuals with religious backgrounds would be electrified, possibly into mass violence, by the discovery of extraterrestrial life while individuals with scientific backgrounds would be devastated when they learn they are not the intellectual masters of the known universe. Unfortunately for NASA, the Pentagon, the White House and the Department of Homeland Security, the cover-up is already falling apart.

No mention of Iraqi involvement though...

February 2, 2003

It's all so obvious.

Now they've had time to think, conspiracy theorists are coming up with some impressive 'explanations' of the Columbia accident. AntiGravity Al insists that Columbia shot down by HAARP of our DoD. It seems that Neil Armstrong was secretly a woman:

Man has never been more than 300 miles above the final layer of our atmosphere, the ionosphere, or his head would explode and his blood would boil, without being injected with substitute blood, hydrazine solution. Maybe a few astronauts have done this to their bodies and souls and are sworn to secrecy in a kind of occult cabal. If they ever "leak" the truth, they are dead astronauts.

There were several animals on board, including ants which were being used to test the effects of low gravity on the formation of the holy "manna" of the Bible, which is actually a secretion from the anuses of ants. Because:

One of the shuttle astronauts would have revealed the truth of our space program secrecy, and some of the inner dark secrets of the occult control of our NASA.

And because Bush needs the money to spend on killing Iraqi civilians and taking over the world, he ordered a test of the HAARP ELF weapon and used it to shoot down Columbia. Meanwhile, in It's all becoming clear now, 'qaz' comes up with the same conspiracy I offered yesterday, but takes it much further:

Everyone says there's no way the shuttle could've been shot down.
Well, this is true, considering the technology available.
But, consider this: Saddam has extraterrestial technology, and is using it against us.
Check it out: http://english.pravda.ru/main/2003/01/31/42821.html
Now I know some of you skeptical people will say this is just utter nonsense, but I'm sure those of us like Bushsucks will take this to heart and be able to connect the dots.
The only problem is that if the Iraqis did it, it rules out the possibility of the CIA being involved.....or does it?
Everyone KNOWS the US has been in contact with aliens and has been exchanging technology with them, so once you sit down and figure it all out, you have to admit that the same aliens which the US has been in cahoots with since at least the infamous Roswell incident are probably also working with Saddam.
In other words, both nations are controlled by the same evil alien empire.

This post is of course bullshit, we are reassured at the end, destroying my hope that he actually believed it.

February 1, 2003

Unsurprising developments

It didn't take long for explanations of the shuttle accident to start appearing on alt.conspiracy. Take this posting - anyone else notice the irony of shuttle disaster? by 'Lady Amanita':

Jewish astronaut
Bits of shuttle blow up and fall to earth over Palestine Texas.
They tell people to stay away from pieces of debris.

I don't think the shuttle really exploded. Something did. But this was the most convenient thing they could come up with to cover up the explosion and attempted landing of a foreign/alien craft. I won't even begin to speculate on the terrestrial/extraterrestrial possibilities. That is not the issue. The fact that is important is the coverup of some nature.

Wonder what they have done/will do with the real shuttle crew?

Could the US government have done it deliberately to increase support for a war? Buckshucks asks Shuttle Shootdown?

May very well be a terrorist act or a Bush Mafia Shootdown to drum up jingo for an Iraq war. After all, Bush used 3000 deaths on 9/11 for his Afghanistan Pipeline and PollBoost War.

If it was terrorism - an Israeli war hero astronaut was on board, and it WAS named Columbia - both motivational symbols. Crash was near Waco, symbolic FBI / CIA city - and VERY near Crawford, Texas-plotting home for Traitor Bush's Mafia.

The two states involved? Texas and Florida - where else? And WHY are they warning everyone to stay away from wreckage?

They make a big to-do out of the altitide - 215,000 feet but pictures I saw showed a MUCH LOWER VEHICLE TRAVELING AT HIGHER THAN NORMAL SPEED. Gassed crew / GPS / Bomb? Just watch the Bush-Spin.

'Kansan', who usually obsesses over German model Heidi Klum, observed Israeli astronaut sacrificed over Palestine, TX:

It then became painfully obvious to me what the Entities had done. Aboard Columbia was the first Israeli astronaut, Ilan Roman. I had written about him in my message Kansan to undergo colonoscopy (January 23, 2003).

I had mentioned that his name is an anagram for Norma (Norma Jean Baker, a.k.a. Marilyn Monroe), and no mar, i.e., no ocean in Spanish. Also, Ilan is a garbled anagram for "alien".

The first parody conspiracy comes from 'antonovitz1' under the heading Let's get started!!:

Israeli was a Mossad agent with a suicidal Masada Complex who sabotaged the shuttle to possible blame Arabs and drum up support for Poor Little Israel which translates in "billions and billions' more of U.S. dollars. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

At least I think it's a parody. But personally, I think it must have been Iraq. It's obvious. We know they've got reverse-engineered extraterrestrial spacecraft (Prattle, 31st January 2003), so obviously they used it to fire weapons of mass destruction at the Shuttle. It all makes sense - it must be true. Nuke Baghdad now!

Going down

The Entrances to Hell website is the constantly updated catalogue of Entrances to Hell in and around the UK and clearly an essential guide when someone tells you where to go.

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