Alan Perlman's Blog (96)

Update on life, death, Mom, and the rabbi

Thanks to all who read my previous post.  I found out today that Mom is in hospice and sinking fast, so I launched the letter (previous blog entry) to the Rabbi, slightly edited.  Done and done, right?  Not so fast.  Here's the auto-reply:

Thank [sic] for your email.

I will not be reading my emails during the Jewish Holiday of Shemini Atzeret, Simchat Torah or the Sabbath following them.

I will look forward to reading and responding to my emails…

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Added by Alan Perlman on October 15, 2014 at 3:00pm — 16 Comments

Letter to Rabbi Rosin

FELLOW HERETICS: I AM ACTUALLY GOING TO SEND THIS LETTER (OR SOME VARIATION OF IT) TO THE RABBI IN MY MOTHER’S (AND MY FORMER) HOME TOWN. COMMENTS WELCOME.

Oct. 5, 2014

Dear Rabbi Rosin,

Thanks so much for visiting my Mother today. I know you’re really busy with the High Holidays. As in my youth, it’s still the only time everybody shows up, as if God doesn’t notice their non-observance the rest of the year, so you have to make the most of it. I do appreciate the time you…

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Added by Alan Perlman on October 5, 2014 at 8:30pm — 17 Comments

Can we please call the enemy by its real name?

We now face a new menace in the Mideast: a body of fanatics (armed with weapons we left) who will kill anybody who gets in the way of their turning the clock back to 1500.  They're openly threatening the US.

Once again politicians dance around the real problem.  It's not terrorism.  It's not even Dubya's "evildoers."  

No public figure has the guts to call the enemy by its real name: RELIGION.  A vicious, ineradicable set of shared beliefs that is responsible for 90% of the…

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Added by Alan Perlman on August 28, 2014 at 2:30pm — 36 Comments

The Battle for Zachary's Brain, IX; "Can I show that to Daddy?"

There is nothing that is too obvious of an absurdity to be firmly planted in the human head as long as you begin to instill before the age of five by constantly repeating it with an air of great seriousness.

– Arthur Schopenhauer

Followers of the riveting “Zachary’s Brain” series of posts will know that the narrative is not a Gothic horror tale…but something that is just as disturbing: resisting the religious programming of a child.

His step-mother,…

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Added by Alan Perlman on May 16, 2014 at 1:00pm — 2 Comments

Jesus will never disappoint you” – Church sign boldly states religion’s Big Lie

“All religions are the same.  Religion is basically guilt, with different holidays.”

Cathy Ladman

"Praying is like a rocking chair.  It’ll give you something to do, but it won’t get you anywhere.”

Gypsy Rose Lee

 

Church signs are a never-ending source of wonder and speculation for us humanists: assuming that there is nowadays an endless source of them (the Internet assures an endless supply of…

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Added by Alan Perlman on May 9, 2014 at 8:43pm — 13 Comments

Oy, vey! GM shoots itself in the other foot

“The more you want people to have creative ideas and solve problems, the less you can afford to manage them with terror.”

 

Daniel Greenberg

Chairman, Electro Rent Corp.

Newsweek, 4/25/88

 

“American management, in the two decades after world War II, was universally admired for its strikingly effective performance.  But times change.  An approach shaped and refined during stable decades may be ill suited…

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Added by Alan Perlman on April 29, 2014 at 4:16pm — No Comments

Happy 4/20!

Thousands of years ago — in times we are fond of calling ‘primitive’ (since this renders us ‘modern’ without having to exert ourselves further to earn this qualification) — religion and medicine were united in an undifferentiated enterprise; and both were closely allied with government and politics — all being concerned with maintaining the integrity of the community and of the individuals who were its members. How did ancient societies and their priest-physicians protect people from…

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Added by Alan Perlman on April 20, 2014 at 3:30pm — 3 Comments

Happy Easter, Bloody Easter

“In your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it,

You’ll be the grandest lady in the Easter Parade…

On the Avenue, Fifth Avenue, photographers will snap us

And you’ll find that you’re in the rotogravure…”

Irving Berlin

“They tried to nail him down, but he got away.”

Marquee outside church in Massachusetts

Well, it’s that day again, and our Greek Orthodox friends, as well as our Roman…

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Added by Alan Perlman on April 19, 2014 at 7:00pm — 9 Comments

Another Passover, another celebration of non-deliverance; on not being a jerk

Imagine the religious principles which have, in fact, prevailed in the world. You will scarcely be persuaded that they are anything but sick men’s dreams.”



David Hume

Psrt I: The Non-Event

Another Passover is upon us. I’ve said just about all I can say about this holiday when Jews celebrate their founding myth, the…

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Added by Alan Perlman on April 18, 2014 at 7:30pm — 4 Comments

The Battle for Zachary's Brain, VII: Counter-Church/The Absurdity of Jonah

There is nothing that is too obvious of an absurdity to be firmly planted in the human head as long as you begin to instill before the age of five by constantly repeating it with an air of great seriousness.

– Arthur Schopenhauer

Followers of the riveting “Zachary’s Brain” series of posts will know that the narrative is not a Gothic horror tale…but something that is just as disturbing: resisting the religious programming of a child.

His…

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Added by Alan Perlman on April 14, 2014 at 3:00pm — 5 Comments

Say NO to "Noah"

Back in the day, a trip to my grandparents' row home in South Philly, for Passover or the Jewish New Year, was preceded by a family movie in Center City.  The theaters were huge and ornate -- not at all like your bare-bones cineplex; the movies were usually Biblical and always accompanied by chocolate covered cherries.

Of course, we saw Charlton Heston as Moses.  I think Ben-Hur got sneaked in there, as well as Israeli-themed movies like the heart-rending Exodus,…

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Added by Alan Perlman on March 22, 2014 at 2:23pm — 19 Comments

Happy Hanukkah -- sort of

"If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities."

 

Voltaire

“Hanukkah celebrates the triumph of tribal Jewish backwardness.”

Christopher Hitchens

“Hanukkah is…the Feast of Lights. Instead of one day, we got eight CRAZY…

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Added by Alan Perlman on December 1, 2013 at 7:30pm — 5 Comments

Are Holidays a Disaster?

"I choose to decline all invitations to a ghost's birthday party and to shun Christmas things as much as possible. I have no religious faith, I have no Christmas tree, and I want neither…and I don't believe I've missed a thing."

 

"... the willingness to do, in some form or another, what others have always done because of foundationless teachings that that is what we're all supposed to do," is "what aggravates me about holidays and…

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Added by Alan Perlman on November 16, 2013 at 7:30pm — 6 Comments

Get God out of Government!

"Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear."

-- Thomas Jefferson

 

Jesus H. Christ!!  I cannot believe that the Supreme Court is AGAIN about to debate the legitimacy of the spouting…

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Added by Alan Perlman on November 4, 2013 at 6:30pm — 6 Comments

Straddling the fence on superstition

My first choice, when I rag on religion, is Judaism, just because I know it first-hand.  Of course, there's always more to learn.  Through my current wife, I became aware of what goes on in Jewish enclaves/ghettos (depends on who's herding Jews together, Jews or gentiles) -- the threats, the ostracism, the mind control, the obsession with ritual (these people REALLY observe all the Sabbath and milk/meat separation rules, and it is a major…

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Added by Alan Perlman on October 31, 2013 at 1:00pm — 26 Comments

Thoughts of an Aug. 9 birthday child

“Hell no, we won’t go!”

60s anti-war slogan



It’s nice to have a birthday in the summer – guaranteed good weather (almost).  My early parties were well attended (everybody home from vacation) and outdoors.  But I know why seniors tend to disregard birthdays: as the number of enjoyed August 9ths gets more numerous, so does the number of anticipated August 9ths shrink.

As a speechwriter, I learned such obscure facts as my shared birthdate with Francis Scott…

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Added by Alan Perlman on August 9, 2013 at 1:30pm — 4 Comments

Categories of religious belief

In respose to a post about a pretty mediocre study of "types" of atheists (indeed all A/N belong to one of the six categories, antitheists," who regard religion as dangerous fantasy and warn of its many harms and evils), I posted the following categories of religous (non-)belief.  Readers are welcome to contribute/commment. 

My categories:

(1) atheist/antitheist/"ignostic" (doesn't care, doesn't worry about it)

(1a) work in progress - trying to free oneself from…

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Added by Alan Perlman on July 13, 2013 at 7:30pm — 2 Comments

The Battle for Zachary’s Brain, VII: Desecration

There is nothing that is too obvious of an absurdity to be firmly planted in the human head as long as you begin to instill before the age of five by constantly repeating it with an air of great seriousness. 

– Arthur Schopenhauer

 

Followers of the riveting “Zachary’s Brain” series of posts will know that the narrative is not a gothic horror tale…but something that is just as disturbing: resisting the religious programming of a child.

 His…

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Added by Alan Perlman on July 2, 2013 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Memorial Day 2013: Not for MY Freedom

"To lead an uninstructed people to war is to throw them away."

Confucius

“Youth is the first victim of war; the first fruit of peace.  It takes twenty years of peace or more to make a man; it takes only twenty seconds of war to destroy him.”

King Baudouin I of…

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Added by Alan Perlman on May 23, 2013 at 4:30pm — 8 Comments

Jewish Atheist spreads reason and heresy on the Net

I was contacted by www.askimo.com , a new internet portal featuring video interviews of experts talking on their field of expertise.  I decided that my field of expertise would be “what the Torah really says” (since I am one of the few laypeople who has actually bothered to find out), along with related questions about atheism, blasphemy and the “clear alternative to the Torah” (It's SCIENCE!). 

The questions were partly supplied by me, generally…

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Added by Alan Perlman on May 8, 2013 at 1:00pm — No Comments

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