The Raving Theist

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Eeeeeeeeeeeak-ster

April 9, 2004 | 31 Comments

Looks like Mel Gibson’s doing local theater now:

A church trying to teach about the crucifixion of Jesus performed an Easter show with actors whipping the Easter bunny and breaking eggs, upsetting several parents and young children.

People who attended Saturday’s performance at Glassport’s memorial stadium quoted performers as saying, “There is no Easter bunny,” and described the show as being a demonstration of how Jesus was crucified.

* * *

Performers broke eggs meant for an Easter egg hunt and also portrayed a drunken man and a self-mutilating woman.

The whipping and mutilation might have been big surprises, but the revelation that there’s no Easter bunny probably didn’t come as much of a shock. Santa is usually the first casualty of childhood skepticism, and by the time Easter rolls around a few months later there’s no need to state the obvious. No big loss, either: the cheapskate rodent never brought enough candy to fill even the bottom of a Halloween bag, and was sadly mistaken if he thought that hard boiled eggs could compete with a mountain of toys.

I do wonder, though, how common it is for loss of a faith in the Easter bunny to lead to disbelief in Santa, rather than the other way around. Statistically, it’s not likely to be more than 25%. A child who believes in Santa on in late December has only about three months to become disillusioned with holiday icons, whereas a bunny-believer has nearly nine months (including a promotion in school grades) to question St. Nick’s existence. Additionally, it’s easier to lose faith in a talking rabbit that a laughing man, although Santa loses some credibility through his association with Rudolph.

I also wonder if there are any Christian purists who ban Santa but permit Peter Cottontail. As I’ve noted before, Eve Tushnet opposes feeding kids the Santa-myth (here and here) because “it unnecessarily complicates Christmas . . . blurs the line between fun storytelling and, well, lying” . . . “makes Christmas about Santa Claus rather than [Christ],” and because “superstition is anti-Christian and magic-y.” While I can see how the similarities between the human, gift-giving Santa and the human, gift-getting Jesus could confuse kids, the differences between a cuddly little rabbit and a serious, whip-shredded man on a cross immediately suggest that they belong to separate realms of reality. So there’s not as much risk that when the bunny falls it will topple Jesus — unless his basket contains of science, everyday experience, the cold, hard face of reality, and formal logic.

Comments

31 Responses to “Eeeeeeeeeeeak-ster”

  1. AK
    April 9th, 2004 @ 1:19 pm

    how does the bloody death of a God manifested in a human form relate to a bunny magickally shitting out colorful eggs for children to find in a grassy knoll? Maybe the eggs represent Jesus, and going on an easter egg hunt is like going on a Jesus hunt?

    But then again, how does the pregnant virgin test-tube birth of a God relate to a fat jolly gift giver from the great white north and a magickal sleigh led by a reindeer with a red glowing magick nose? Is it a veiled attempt to bribe children with gifts to get them to believe in Jesus?

  2. Viole
    April 9th, 2004 @ 1:51 pm

    Yes, AK. See Landover Baptists’ ‘free Playstation’ offer.

    You know, though, that article reminds me of the Landover Baptist article on how they handle easter. How are we supposed to write parodies on this stuff? They keep outdoing our best efforts.

    Would they prefer a church bell bringing candy for Easter? At least that has a bit more to do with religion than a silly rabbit. Must be some sort of pagan thing, like most of the rest of the ‘Christian’ holidays.

  3. Kommander Killjoy
    April 9th, 2004 @ 2:02 pm

    No, it’s an ancient behavioral tool. If a child doesn’t behave they recieve a chunk of coal (which, in the industrial revolution would have been the equivalent of a new train set to todays kids) while they have to sit around and watch all the “good” kids raking it in.

    The coal, I believe, represents the child’s entire year’s worth of sins in cold, black form. Coincientally enough, just add pressure and your sins turn to precious gems. Symbolically this could mean that you don’t learn a damn thing until you make mistakes of your own.

    Now, this whole easter egg thing can be interpereted however anybody wants; because, much like the bible, it’s all about relative perception.

    That said, I’ll offer the notion that this egg/psyche crushing play – simmilar in so many ways to the “Hell House” debotchery – is an indication that theists around the world are starting to feel their self-righteous world crumbling around them. They now have to employ guerilla pigeon-hole tactics to sucker the weak-minded and gain new members.

    There are other indications of this:
    – The “James Brother of Jesus” ostuary hoax.
    – “The Passion”
    – Religious fervor/fever world wide.

    A clear indication that the theist community is getting desparate, and are making proportionately desperate grasps at keeping the wound open. Propagandization via the media is omnipresent. Media = Mind control, plain and simple. All movies out of hollywood are propaganda in some way – Ever see “Armagedon” (SP?)? Or “Independance Day”? Possibly two of the most blatent “Invincable America” pieces of propaganda since Goebels.

    The end is nigh, xtians.

  4. leon
    April 9th, 2004 @ 5:27 pm

    I hate Easter. It reminds me of how sick I always got eating all that cheap chocolate shit and the colored eggs sat out in room temperature so long that salmonella started growing on them giving me severe cramps and diarrhea and the idiots actually hid them outside in the stupidest places. I felt like an idiot looking for them. The fucking fools. It was an obvious bribe to get stupid kids to like Jesus. Just like Xmas was used to steal the Winter Solstice, Easter was designed to take away the relief of winter

  5. rblaes
    April 10th, 2004 @ 10:42 am

    The Easter bunny and Santa are booth tools that religion has tried to utilize. They are used as a primer for a life time of faith, by preconditioning a young brain to accept an omnipotent super being that beings gift for the good, and coal for the bad.

    The bible won

  6. The Hawk
    April 11th, 2004 @ 2:41 am

    I think the RA by concentrating on the j-religion is ignoring a large and obvious target. I mean the moon-god cult started by the famed camal stealer and serial killer Muhammed. They have directions on how to beat your wife(with a small stick) and whether she should take it in the ass(yes, but not good).

  7. alex
    April 11th, 2004 @ 5:09 am

    I whip the bunny at least once a day. If I’m feeling particularly frisky, I might do it twice.

    Never thought it was newsworthy. Never thought about doing it in front of a bunch of kids.

  8. Jen
    April 12th, 2004 @ 10:00 am

    Atheist Liberal Feminist, not alien life form (although I feel like the latter since recently moving to middle GA). After several weeks of visiting the site and reading almost everything, I’ve learned that Serpant is a raving asshole, KK is hilarious, and the meaning of TLOP:0) Previously I have been a little intimidated to post anything since most everyone here sounds like they have a degree in atheism. But I’ve finally decided to respond to AK’s question about the history of Easter. The Greeks originated easter as a celebration of the goddess of fertility, can’t remember her name, but supposedly she was crucified or sacrificed for the “sins” of people. The eggs naturally represent the fertility and as for the bunny…not too sure about that. But when the Greeks began to except Christianity in the 300’s AD, they needed a little convincing. They did not want to give up their egg holiday so basically they (the government or king) plugged in Jesus’ name instead of the goddess which was easy since it was the exact same story (she died, 3 days later resurrected etc…). So the Greeks kept a version of their pagan holiday and the king began the process of converting his people to the new trendy religion. I’ve read this in books and several sites. So from what I can tell it’s pretty acurate. Hope I helped answer your question Ak:0)

  9. Viole
    April 12th, 2004 @ 12:23 pm

    Let me be the first to welcome you aboard, Jen, and to assure you that I, at least, have no degree in atheism at all(or in any religion). Don’t worry about it.

    The Greek Goddess of fertility is Demeter, who causes the seasons. I’m not familiar with any story in which she dies, though. The concept of the easter bunny isn’t a unified thing. The French, I know, have a church bell, instead of a rabbit. I suspect the bunny comes from Celtic lore, rather than Greek.

    Yours in Friendship,
    Viole

  10. Redfred
    April 12th, 2004 @ 1:09 pm

    I’m sorry everyone but I love easter eggs. MMMMMMMM Chocolate! I especially love Cadburys cream eggs…….

    I can’t bring myself to hate easter.. I have to worship the bunny that brings me chocolate. and the man in the red coat that brings me toys in December too, especially if he brings me more chocolate….

    I am perfectly capable of ignoring the religious undertones in my quest for Chocolate, its a bit like a bear with honey, sure you run the risk of getting stung once in a while but Mmmmm …. CHOCOLATE.

  11. Jen
    April 12th, 2004 @ 1:52 pm

    Thank you Viole, for the warm welcome:0) And again for the clarification of the Goddess and bunny myth.

  12. Debbie
    April 12th, 2004 @ 2:46 pm

    I can clear up this whole bunny thing, being a Celt with no degrees in atheism, but spent a lot of time with the Anglo-Saxons – married to one in fact.

    The origins of Easter are not Christian nor Celtic, but Anglo-Saxon. The whole celebration is related to the rites of Spring/end of winter – big feast/ excessive consumption etc. The rabbit is a fertility symbol related to rites of Spring. E

  13. AK
    April 12th, 2004 @ 3:00 pm

    Gee whiz, are ALL the xtian holidays just ripoffs of pagan ones?

    I knew xmas and halloween were, but it looks now like the whole damn list is a big pagan reformatting.

    Reminds me of how the Romans kept the Greek gods and gave them different names hehe. . . .

    I cant wait to tell the first Xtian I see “Your belief in Christs resurrection and celebration thereof is a ripoff from a much older religions holiday in which, to keep the masses happy, certain elements of it were kept during the religious transition to Xtianity. How sacred is your Bible/Jeebus/Easter now?”

    But of course, they will not listen. I must now assault them with my atheist-made peeps cannon.

  14. Redfred
    April 12th, 2004 @ 3:23 pm

    As long as there is Chocolate I will (make) believe in the bunny be he xtian, Celtic, Anglo Saxon (like me) or Buddha reincarnate. Long live the bunny of Chocdoom aka Cadburys Cream egg land. I just remembered, what

  15. Eva
    April 12th, 2004 @ 3:53 pm

    i have a real cocoa tree….does that make me special?

  16. AK
    April 12th, 2004 @ 5:21 pm

    Eva, that makes you a Goddess

    dont believe me? Ask Serpent!

    :)

  17. Debbie
    April 12th, 2004 @ 9:06 pm

    AK,

    Just about all pagan festivals have been assimilated by the Borg-like Christian empire. First you associate with a popular event, then you take it over and pretend it’s your own.

    “Resistance is futile”

  18. Jen
    April 13th, 2004 @ 8:55 am

    Ak: “reminds me of how the romans kept the Greek gods and gave them different names…”
    Have you read Dan Brown’s DiVinci Code? I don’t know how true this is, but it says that in 325, Constantine, the Roman king had a council of Nicea and they voted on much of what is in the new testiment. IE, whether or not to make jeezus just a profit or the son of god. They VOTED on the latter. Which makes sense cuz it kinda ties into what I was saying earlier about plugging in jeezus into an already accepted ideal of the time. Mortal woman meets cosmic sky god and they make a son or daughter who will walk the earth and sacrifice themselves for peoplekind. The book is a made-up story but I think it’s tied in some facts about the history of xtianity.

  19. Jen
    April 13th, 2004 @ 9:00 am

    Forgot me conclusion: *a-hem* In conclusion, it wouldn’t surprise me that if the Romans did it once that they would do it again, only from one stolen religion to another.

  20. Eva
    April 13th, 2004 @ 9:37 am

    ….also, at the Council of Nicea, the guys voted to decide if women were human or not…..
    yep, we are human..but only by one vote!
    Heil Jay-sus!!

  21. AK
    April 13th, 2004 @ 12:07 pm

    BWAHAHAHAHA the VOTED on whether or not women were HUMAN??? For christs sake! Did they consider their own mothers?

    Yes I read the Dan Brown book. In fact I was just posting about that book in IIDB.org.

    I asked them over there if they think THE DAVINCI CODE, since its turning into a movie, might make people who see it re-examine their faith. The Movie would be quite anti-christian and might promote critical thinking. What do you all think?

  22. Jen
    April 13th, 2004 @ 12:50 pm

    I think that any movie that got as much attention by the media as the passion of the christ would do quite well. But we all know that with the government taking away freedom of speech on the radio (ie howard stern) and trying its best to control cable too, that any such movie as The Davinci Code won’t get anywhere near the publicity. No publicity, not as successful. In fact, people would more likely boycott it. Sad, but not too far from the truth I don’t think…

  23. Viole
    April 13th, 2004 @ 2:14 pm

    Everyone remember to go out and watch Life of Brian, when it comes to the theatres. If every atheist out there when to see Life of Brian with a theist friend, I bet we could get it to gross more than the Passion.

    Well, that’s probably optimistic, but it’s a fun movie regardless.

  24. Debbie
    April 13th, 2004 @ 4:32 pm

    Speaking of the Da Vinci code, I caught part of a program on the History Channel a few days ago about the idiot Drosnin and the Bible Code. They had “expert” after “expert” (strangely all men with long beards) talking about the secret codes they have found in the bible predicting the future. This has been debunked but I didn’t see anything in the part of the program I caught that gave this perspective. Of course you find whatever you want in the bible if you skip enough sequences of letters. That “There is no God” occurs five times in the Torah is my favorite.

    Haven’t watched much on the History Channel before but this program put me right off as they clearly have no interest in fact.

  25. Kommander Killjoy
    April 13th, 2004 @ 7:44 pm

    That’s not necessarily true about the History Channel not having interest in fact. I’ve seen programs on there about Jesus, and they are the first to admit that archeologists have a very hard time finding evidence of anything in the bible, and doubt very very much that Jesus even existed.

  26. Debbie
    April 13th, 2004 @ 11:20 pm

    Perhaps they’re just inconsistent unprofessional jackasses then.

  27. Jen
    April 14th, 2004 @ 10:25 am

    I agree Debbie, that the History channel is DEFINATLY inconsistant. They had a really wonderful program about evolution with beautiful computer animation and chok-full of insightful information….and then here a little more recently they had a show that was somewhere on the lines of …”who was jeezus” or something. It’s really confusing:( I think they flip-flop more than John Kerry. ( no offense to the Kerry fans)

  28. Kommander Killjoy
    April 14th, 2004 @ 6:41 pm

    But if one is not inconsistant, they can’t please everybody all the time, and isn’t that the only way to keep a channel from being shut down?
    Why, even Fox, an obvious and at times admitted group of Atheists, mention god in their programming. The Simpsons is full of making-fun-of-god-jokes disguised as seeming theism. Southpark, Family Guy, Futurama, are all designed like that; to point out man’s folly by caricaturizing it (not much though). I’ve heard of xtians saying that they think the Simpsons is the most religious show out there, but THE JOKE’S ON THEM!! WOO!

    “A person reveals his character (and intellect) by nothing so clearly as the joke he resents” – G.C. Lichtenberg

    In other words, if you don’t find the Simpsons funny, then you are either the brunt of the joke, or just too uneducated to understand the humor.

  29. Redfred
    April 15th, 2004 @ 9:59 am

    I watch the History channel quite a bit, and I have found that the vast majority of their programs are fair and accurate, however the network doesn’t make the programs, merely airs them and, of the myriad of production companies that actually make the programs, some certainly have a motive in the story they are telling, and have a tendency to bend the facts a little to validate this.

    The programs that most often fall in to this category is the ones trying to prove / dis-prove myths, Atlantis and Loch ness monster programs spring to mind and I

  30. Athe
    April 23rd, 2004 @ 9:21 am

    Like almost every other Christian holiday, Easter is a combination of biblical story and ‘pagan’ festival.
    The bunny is a fertility symbol, not that hard to see if you look at the fact that bunnies reproduce like…rabbits.
    The eggs are another fertility symbol, not that hard to see here.
    The traditional egg hunt? Well, it used to be young women searching for the eggs, the number of eggs found was the number of children you would have that year.
    In order to spread the christian belief to followers of older more established religions, early christians made compromises.
    The spring fertility and rebirth of the natural world=Christ’s resurrection and rebirth.
    So, what do the easter bunny and christ have to do with each other? Not a whole hell of a lot.

  31. Павел
    May 29th, 2009 @ 8:03 pm

    Вот это да… По-моему, минусы намного превосходят плюсы. Думаю, не стоит заморачиваться.

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