Feòrag: October 2004 Archives

October 25, 2004

Bogroll Jesus

DLTK features lots of interesting Christian craft ideas, but the one that caught Red Wolf's attention was the Jesus Toilet Paper Roll Craft:

It may seem a tad odd making Jesus out of a toilet paper roll, but I think the end result is quite nice (Tasha has hers sitting in a place of honor on her bedroom shelf). The craft is made with a toilet paper tube, a printer, a piece of paper, some crayons, scissors, and glue. I always prefer to use a heavy paper (like construction paper), but it isn't necessary.

Colour and mono printable templates are available for download. When you've done that, try the Virgin and Child Toilet Paper Roll Craft. Jewish children might appreciate the Moses Toilet Paper Roll Craft, complete with Ten Commandments. Alas, I could not find a Jael Toilet Paper Roll Craft.

Bargain of the Day: No relation

Messianic Jews apparently have a term for their symbol combining a Magen David with a cross, and you too can buy a Cross: Stross Sterling Silver Charm from Treasure Island Jewelry (thank you to Gil, who found one by accident).

Dead witch found

Russia: An unusual burial will keep Russian archæologists busy for some time. The grave discovered in the Crimea appears to be that of a woman aged about 40 who was an upper-class magic-user.

9 bronze rings, the same number of bells (perhaps, this particular number had been considered sacred at the time), a whole array of different amulets, beads-all of the items have been unearthed by the archaeologists. The witch must have dug out those accessories from ancient burials in order to intensify her magic powers. The reason the scientists are inclined to believe this is so, has to do with the fact that all the relics date back to a much earlier period than the woman's corpse.

Mind-boggling find in Crimea - Pravda, 22nd October 2004.

The Devil and the deep blue sea

United Kingdom: An Edinburgh-born sailor has been granted the same rights as any other religious sailor to practice his religion on board ship and Ann Widdicombe is upset because Ldg Hand Chris Cranmer is a Satanist. After years of trying to impose her religious beliefs on others when she was a government minister, she has now decided it's a private matter which should be kept in the home.

I am utterly shocked by this, Miss Widdecombe said.

Satanism is wrong. Obviously the private beliefs of individuals anywhere including the Armed Forces are their own affair but I hope it doesn't spread.

There should be no question whatsoever of allowing Satanist rituals on board any ship in Her Majesty's Royal Navy.

What they believe and do in their own home is one thing, what they do at work is the business of their employer.

The Navy should not permit Satanist practices on board its ships.

God himself gives free will, but I would like to think that if somebody applied to the Navy and said they were a Satanist today it would raise its eyebrows somewhat.

British law does not permit employers to discriminate against someone on grounds of religion.

Widdecombe horror at navy Satanist - The Guardian, 24th October 2004.

October 21, 2004

Hallowe'en 'offensive to witches'

United States: A Washington State school district has cancelled Hallowe'en celebrations in case the festival is offensive to Wiccans.

The district said Halloween celebrations and children dressed in Halloween costumes might be offensive to real witches.

Witches with pointy noses and things like that are not respective symbols of the Wiccan religion and so we want to be respectful of that, Hansen said.

The Wiccan, or Pagan, religion is said to be growing in the United States and there are Wiccan groups in Puyallup.

On the district's list of guidelines related to holidays and celebrations is an item that reads: Use of derogatory stereotypes is prohibited, such as the traditional image of a witch, which is offensive to members of the Wiccan religion.

School Says Halloween Disrespectful to Witchesabc News, 21st October 2004.

Christian claims cross not religious symbol

United States: A judge has rejected a lawsuit from a Christian who opposed the removal of a cross from the Los Angeles County seal. Ernesto Vasquez made contradictory complaints that the symbol wasn't actually religious, but that removing it would be discriminating against Christians.

According to the plaintiff, the cross only represents the historic 'influence of the church and the mission of California,' [U.S. District Judge S. James] Otero wrote. Yet plaintiff maintains L.A. County is conveying a message of hostility to religious groups by removing the symbol from the seal.

A representation of the goddess Pomona is also due to be removed, and replaced with a picture of a Native American woman, but Vasquez appears not to be concerned about that.

Judge Dismisses L.A. County Seal Lawsuit - The Guardian, 21st October 2004.

October 19, 2004

The usual.

Sri Lanka: A Christian cleric has been arrested in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of eight boys.

The suspect who belonged to the New Order Christianity Gathering in Kaluwarippuwa in Katana had allegedly sexually abused eight boys between the age of 12 and 18, a NCPA spokesman said....

The arrest was made on the night of October 15 by the Special Police Unit with the assistance of neighbours while the suspect was in hiding.

The suspect had rented a house at Kaluwarippuwa where he had been conducting religious activities connected with the New Order.

He is alleged to have invited children to his residence on the pretext of "conducting classes" but employed them in his farm to look after pigs, dogs and other animals.

According to NCPA officers the children were fed with rotten vegetables meant for the animals.

The priest is also alleged to have forced the children to take liquor and also shown them phonographic [sic.] films before sexually abusing them.

Interestingly, the complaint against the mushrooming sect came from the Bishop of Mannar, and it will be interesting to see whether the allegations or true, or the work of a jealous mind.

NCPA cops nab child abuse cleric - Daily News, 19th October 2004.

Bargain of the Day: magic pumpkins

Japan: Asako Kawahara can sell you a pumpkin wearing a hat. But this is no ordinary pumpkin - it's one of Asahara's Angel Pumpkins, and has incredible powers.

Two women who had been willing but unable to have babies after marriages of eight and 11 years respectively suddenly fall pregnant. Another woman plagued by repeated miscarriages desperately wants a child, but still can't get through a pregnancy after four years of marriage. But two months after getting an Angel Pumpkin, she gets pregnant, carries the child to term and is delighted!...

When I gave a woman having trouble getting along with others and struggling to overcome a failed relationship, it went rotten within a week. But that was when things seemed to pick up for the woman. She thanked me, saying, 'All the horrible things in my life seemed to have been passed on to the pumpkin, Kawahara recalls for Flash. Another bachelor who really hated being around people got one of my pumpkins and his life turned for the better. He became a different man, trying his hand at whatever challenge was thrust up before him.

Alas, the link given by the Mainichi Daily News is broken, so you will have to search hard to find where to buy your special vegetable.

October 18, 2004

Bargain of the Day: L'Chaim!

Today's bargain is something Charlie will be in two minds over receiving for his 40th birthday today, for the Shmaltz Brewing Company is an American micro with a difference - they specialise in crafting quality beer and quality shtick for the Jewish community and beyond. They produce two ales, labelled He'brew - the Chosen Beer: Genesis Ale was, unsurprisingly, their first creation.

Crisp, smooth and perfectly balanced between a west coast style pale and amber ale, with a supple malt sweetness and a pronounced hop flourish.

More Prattle-worthy is Messiah Bold It's the Beer You've Been Waiting For!, a nut-brown ale. Thanks to Moshe Feder, I can assure my readers that this is a rather fine beer, dark and complex, if a touch sweet.

All beers are certified to the strictest Orthodox standards.

October 15, 2004

Bargain of the Day: Car Mezuzah

The folk at Jewish Bazaar have thought of everything, and stock of whole range of car mezuzot (scroll down a bit). So, if you are a homeless Jew reduced to living in your car, or a Jewish New Age Traveller, you know where to go.

Seasonal Fun

Hallowe'en is fast approaching. Short of ideas for the obligatory pumpkin? Perhaps Extreme Pumpkins can help?

Extreme Pumpkins.com - Pumpkin carving at its wildest!

At what point did the carving of pumpkins turn into a cute event? When did boys stop carving pumpkins and moms start? Where did we lose touch with one of the years coolest events?

Today we will seize back this ritual. Today is the day we throw away those safe, cute carving tools. Today. We will buy a big, ugly, pumpkin so large one man cannot lift or move it. Today. We will carve that sumbitch into something ugly and plop it on the front porch. October 31st we will light it brightly enough to give visiting children suntans.

Pumpkin carving is reborn.

Welcome to ExtremePumpkins.com where strange pumpkins, pumpkin patterns, and alternative pumpkin carving techniques are developed and demonstrated for you. Pumpkin carving will never be the same.

(via Making Light's Particles.)

October 14, 2004

Sitting among the tea chests

The Prattle is ready to move to its new home. To make it easier, the comments script will stop working (this is not a bug - we've done it deliberatly) and there will be no new entries. If all goes well, we'll be up and running at http://www.prattle.net/ in a day or so.

October 12, 2004

Night Fever

Romania: The inhabitants of the village of Cristinesti fled their homes because they were convinced an alien invasion was underway. The lights turned out to be a local open-air disco.

Fleeing villagers mistook disco lights for aliens - Only Punjab.com, 12th October 2004.

October 9, 2004

Another UFO hoax comes to light

England: An artist has revealed that his well-known UFO photo was nothing but a schoolboy prank.

In February 1954 a picture resembling a UFO floating over Coniston, taken by 14-year-old Stephen Darbishire, from Torver, caused a national sensation.

The teenager claimed he had been on the fells with his cousin when he photographed a UFO.

Now Mr Darbishire, a 63-year-old well-known South Lakeland artist, says it was all a hoax.

At the time, confronted by the national media, he was too terrified and went along with the deception.

Hoax UFO sighting to be recreated for art - North West Evening Mail, 9th October 2004.

Ancient monument vandalised

England: Birkrigg stone circle near Ulverston has been vandalised for the second time in a year. This time, the neds responsible made a crude and unconvincing attempt to make it look like the work of environmentalist protestors.

One of the standing stones of a Bronze Age stone circle has been daubed with red paint.

Last November four of the 12 stones which form an inner circle on the common were covered in paint.

One bore the cryptic message, Stop the Gene War, in black paint.

Paint had also been spattered on the grass, where a fire had also been lit.

VANDALS STRIKE AGAIN AT BIRKRIGG STONE CIRCLE - North West Evening Mail, 29th September 2004.

Confusing loons with Satanists

United States: A convict has been charged with the ritual murder of a teenager who disappeared in 1998. Police say that Robert Anthony Marquez killed and dismembered 16-year old Bryan Thorne because of his belief in Satanism.

How exactly they know this isn't explained, as no trace of Thorne has been found since he disappeared six years ago. Their only evidence seems to be that Marquez's cell was decorated with photos of dismembered sheep and chickens and his body was covered with demon-themed tattoos and Thorne's friends, who insisted that they knew nothing throughout the time Marquez has been safely in prison. Now he is due to be released, they claim that they got stoned with Marquez, who lured Thorne away from the group, stabbed him, chopped him up and put the remains in a bin!

The news reports do not explain how this relates to any known Satanic practice, nor do they discuss how a court will be able to reasonably accept the evidence of people who admit they were high on cannabis at the time.

October 2, 2004

Star (of David) Wars

The San Diego Jewish Journal has a long article about the influence of Judaism on science fiction. It looks at both the pioneering work of Jewish authors, both religious and secular, and the influence of Jewish mythology

From a science-fictional perspective, the most influential Judaic legend is The Golem of Prague, which concerns a rabbi who creates a creature out of clay to protect the Jewish people. Although there are different endings to the tale, in the most popular version he loses control of his monster and must destroy it. The spiritual forbearer of such well-known fables as Frankenstein and familiar characters like the Terminator and the HAL 9000 computer from 2001: A Space Odyssey, the Golem has become a powerful trope embodying both cautionary and idealistic outlooks – two notions that are invaluable to successful science-fiction storytelling. For many genre authors, particularly those steeped in Jewish folklore, the story remains a rich ideological source.

Ultimately, they regard the Jewish influence as responsible for the fundamentally optimistic nature of the genre: that the world will be a better place, and people will not have destroyed themselves.

Stars of David - San Diego Jewish Journal, October 2004 (via Locus).

About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries written by Feòrag in October 2004.

Feòrag: September 2004 is the previous archive.

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