Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Van Robison: Without FEAR Religion Would Never Exist

Religion Steals Your Life, Family, Time and Money

Without FEAR religion would never exist.   Without "Holy" books, priests, pastors and religious overlords, there would be no religions.  Unfortunately, it is those who appoint themselves as representatives and conduits for "God", who religiously rape the simple minded.

Religion is like quicksand and once you are in its grip, you sink and slowly sink until you are consumed.  At that point escape from its suffocation is next to impossible. You cannot see or hear any voice other than your own quicksand.

Admittedly you have never, not even once in your entire life seen "God", or so much as sat down in your home and had a friendly conversation with this "God", that you think you worship and obey and are deathly afraid of. 

That being true, then it is not "God" who is the author of your religious beliefs or of your "Holy" books, but rather egotistical, extremely haughty and vain men, who pretend to speak for "God" to you.

Now the bottom line and the real cause of man-made religions---the love of power, control, self and an endless gravy-train of free $money for life; all at the expense of the timid, the fearful, the unknowing, the easily deceived, the naive, the gullible and those who cannot think or reason for themselves.  

In our modern day and age there is a veritable wealth of knowledge about the origins of the "Bible", and apart from and outside of the religious parrots or apologists for the so called "Bible."   Only when church goers are willing to read and study from the endless array of challenges to the status quo, can they crawl out of the man-made religious quicksand.

You sacrifice not only your own life, but the life of your family and children, when you live in fear of some self-appointed preacher, who will end life in the graveyard.  Of course it is human to want to live forever in paradise, but no human priest, pastor or religious overlord is your guarantee of life after death.  They may quote verses from ink on paper called "the Bible", but the bible is an entirely man-made collection of human writings never inspired by "God."  Do the research and prove it.

If you really want to live, then opt out of submission to religious overlords and set your family free from the hypocrisy of religious priestcraft.

Van Robison


Anonymous said...

Good advice. My life turned completely around when I did it. I'm no longer that primate cowering in a cave as the storm rages outside and totally convinced some unseen being is behind it and out to get him.

Allen C. Dexter

Anonymous said...

indeed without fear, religion, i.e., God would not exist in the minds of men...that ol cliche there are no atheist in foxholes could be better revised thus: we in todays modern world eat on a regular basis, are generally protected from exposure to the outdoors, and have little expectation of becoming victims of the predatory behavior of man or beast, so of course our nature is to deny there is a God...

but let that reality be reversed and watch how quickly we cry out to God for help...

DennisCDiehl said...

Anon said: but let that reality be reversed and watch how quickly we cry out to God for help..."

And then see how long it takes for help not to arrive.

Anonymous said...

There's a reason why religious people are still the majority. Tangible benefits are provided. In spite of occasional answers of "No.", there is still salve for the soul. We just happen to have gotten burned by a bogus one, a non-nurturing one in which the God-Satan equation got all turned around.

And, by the way, there are atheists in foxholes, and in many other dire circumstances. People who spout such cliches have led a very sheltered life, and don't really know people. However, atheists functioning in a society which still has vestiges of christian ethics do have their behavior and sense of human goodness influenced by those vestiges. Remove those factors, and human life becomes cheapened, as in Russia, or North Korea.

itstimecog said...

Well Dennis, while I can't speak for others, in my personal experiences, it all depends on the circumstances / situation.
The principal of "asking amiss" (James 3:4) most definitely applies.

Anonymous said...

The ol' cliche that there are no atheists in foxholes could be better revised by throwing it the garbage where it belongs. That's predicated upon the ol' christian canard that atheists are secretly believers who are just pretending they're not believers and are just denying God in their minds as an excuse for going out and living a life of "debauchery."

Still think that the only reason atheists don't think there's a god is because then they'd have to stop sinning? Consider the fact that you don't have to deny there's a god in order to sin all you want. You don't have to leave the church or pretend to be an atheist to already do everything you want to do. Christianity, with its unending forgiveness for bad behavior facilitates sin already. Just look at how many ministers have affairs. How Herbert Armstrong molested his daughter. Look at Josh Duggar. Look at all those pedophile priests. What more excuse to sin do you need than that of being a christian?

Nope. As hard as it may be for christians to accept, because it goes against dishonest christian propaganda that there aren't any good reasons to deconvert, so if you do, it must have been for bad ones, there are plenty of perfectly good, valid, and sensible reasons to deconvert.

As a result, some people aren't believers for the very simple, honest, and completely straightforward reason that they authentically do not believe in supernatural beings, period.

Anonymous said...

Fear is very useful to us if it keeps us from making a big mistake but 'irrational fear' is very different. It is all too often used by manipulative people to control others and limit their choices. Could religion fall into the category of 'irrational fear'? Sure, but I still think religion has been useful to us in the distant past. If homo sapiens couldn't do religion we would have gone extinct like the neanderthal. But in this day and age, we don't depend on cave paintings to learn about migratory hunting patterns or runes to give one secret knowledge or insight. Modern rational humans realize that worshipping the calendar doesn't get you closer to God, but almost all religions today still sell that shit. The calendar is useful to plan your life, and shouldn't be used to control other people's lives. Not unless they tend to be irrational and you want to take advantage of that. If an armstrong acolyte was going to meet HWA on 10/12/2016, would that date then be transformed into a annual holy day? Kind of like a prayer rock or anniversary of some kind like Jan 16, and that all kinds of mystical connotations could be derived from it? Malm, Flurry, Pack, and Sideshow Bob would.


Anonymous said...

Why can't anyone have a relationship with God with-out belonging to any religion? Religions are inventions of men. It's not just in the narrow sense of organized churches but also in the broad sense of religious movements like Christianity, Judaism, and Islam ect.. The argument for religion is that you need to be with like minded people to grow as a person. My question is Why? Don't we have like minded people all around us that we come in contact with on a daily basis that we can share our lives with in a positive way. Why do we need to belong to any institution devised by men that controls us and abuses us to keep us enslaved.

itstimecog said...

I wonder how many realize that what Mr. Van Robison feels is almost exactly how Christ feels.
Unfortunately, we tend to falsely associate what is taught, with what the real Christ actually says.
So, what does Christ say will happen to those who, like Mr. Van Robison, so blatantly attack what is perceived to be the word of God but in reality, is attacking yet one more false Christ?
Christ says that Mr. Van Robison will be resurrected, judged and found guilty. He should rejoice over that judgment because the next step in that chronology is that God finds him "justified".
Let's not forget that Christ shed His blood for the remission of all the sins of all mankind.
Not just the sins of the self-appointed self-righteous carnivores who promote and advocate the false Christ.
So yes, while Mr. Van Robison, like almost everyone else who has ever lived, will be found justified.
Don't judge him harshly as he seems to wish he could wipe out the false teachings and Christ is about to do exactly that very thing.

Remember, it's time COG.

Anonymous said...

Almost all religion is a manmade effort to explain the existence of the universe and man’s place in it and is pretty bizarre stuff. What may be called “true” religion is still debated, twisted and perverted by humans. So it’s still clouded in confusion and mystery. I don’t pretend to have all the answers or even full understanding on many basic questions.
However as a “logical” IT professional there are fundamental issues that an atheist has to deal with.

The fact that there is a Creator is blatantly obvious to me. Shortly before I was born the creation of the universe was not needed based on Einstein steady state Universe. Hubble discovered the red shift of an expanding universe so a beginning or creation to the universe no has to be addressed.

Astrophysicist try to explain how something came from nothing but its total foolishness. Then to explain the impossible fine tuning to the laws of physics they come up with the crazy idea of unlimited parallel universes.

Parameter Max. Deviation
Ratio of Electrons:Protons 1:1037
Ratio of Electromagnetic Force:Gravity 1:1040
Expansion Rate of Universe 1:1055
Mass Density of Universe1 1:1059
Cosmological Constant 1:10120

These numbers represent the maximum deviation from the accepted values, that would either prevent the universe from existing now, not having matter, or be unsuitable for any form of life.

Then our elite scientific minds tell us life came from non-life even though they have their own law of biogenesis. If you watch any of the YouTube presentation of the creation on one protein, (call the Central Dogma of Biology) in the cells in our body the complexity and design is mind boggling. The whole process screams that “Nature” is not a natural process.

Yes our suffering on this planet is difficult to explain with a loving God involved. But like I said, I don’t have all the answers, mostly a lot of questions.

Anonymous said...

indeed given the worlds historic and deeply engrained culture of denying His existence, how can He respond?

we typically ignore Him until we want something; i know few human beings that would respond to the sudden pleas for help of another if that person has always rejected and shown contempt for them...

no one likes to be used or taken for granted...

Miguel de la Rodente said...

Actually, a more profound statement would be: Without fear, life could not exist.

It's all in how you manage and channel it, and fear can be channeled in beneficial ways in either a religious or a secular context. One man's manipulation is another's elevation of consciousness. It ain't the thing, it's the use and effect of the thing.

itstimecog said...

Well said Anon 7:37.

DennisCDiehl said...

"Because you ask amiss" is the apologetic offered by James when "whatever you ask in my name I will give it" fails to materialise.

Anonymous said...

I'm not familiar with the phrase "because you ask amiss". What did James mean by that?


DennisCDiehl said...

James 4: 2-3

DennisCDiehl said...

James 4:2-3 , you have not because you ask not and when you ask you ask amiss" was always the answer to "why don't my prayers get answered?" It's always the asker's fault...always. If that doesn't silence the skeptic then you hear, "well...sometimes the answer is 'no'". Again this fits in nicely with no answer. It is never because there is no one going to answer but rather it is always the asker's fault with asking for the wrong motives or just not getting it that the answer has been given, by the silence and it is NO!

Throw in "my ways are not your ways," or "there is a way (a request) that seems right unto a man...but...", and you just can't win.

I always liked being told, "Well, you are just using HUMAN REASONING!" To which I then ask, "What kind of reasoning do you use?" They know better than to say "I used God's reasoning" however some are so bold and sure of themselves to say that too. But mostly that ends question ends in "Oh....ummm, ok, I see what you mean."

You can't win.

itstimecog said...

Anon 4:26, that verse in its complete form is thus: James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
God tells us that His lack of compliance is "that ye may consume it upon your lusts".
He then goes on to explain His reasoning even more: James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

In other words, asking for material things that encourage lusts or based on lust, rather then need, just isn't going to cut it.
Also consider Romans 8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
The reverse of that passage is if you're an enemy of Gods, you will indeed have a carnal mind.

So, if you're asking to fulfill a lust as opposed to a need, it's just not going to happen.

Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Dennis, exactly. You can't win. I was stuck going around and around in circles, trying to figure out how to get somewhere before I realized that there was literally nowhere to be gotten. Christianity is a just a mind game that you play with yourself. If christianity were true, then it's god, based upon the bible and the related apologetic midrash, is certainly a perverse god indeed.

For those who are quick to place the blame back on me again (you know who you are) because of course, the buck can never be allowed to stop with "god," not even if he puts you in a round room and tells you to sit in the corner, and then blames you for failing to sit in the corner...

Yes, for those who would, in complete ignorance, tell me that I must not have, say, tithed on my mint, or on my anise, or on my cumin, and THAT must be the reason why blah, blah, blah, and for the hundreth time, I then have to say that, well, yes, I DID actually tithe on my mint, on my anise, AND on my cumin, thanks for the acusations though...

For those folks, I won't tell you that your god doesn't exist. Who the heck knows. Maybe everybody's gods exist. Maybe they're all out there, spending every moment doing nothing but watching us, eating popcorn with the lights out, and keeping real quiet.

But any god who would create a no win situation, like what has for nearly 2,000 years been claimed for the christian god, well he wouldn't be a moral, or an ethical being, and he wouldn't be worthy of worship. How can a mind get any more "carnal" than a mind as perverse as that claimed for their god? Even if the christian "god" did exist, if what the bible says about him were true, the christian "satan" would make a more ethical god anyway.

So, let's just say that the christian "god" exists. He's got a lot of tapdancing to do by way of explaining why he's not a douchebag. If anyone, including a potentially christian douchebag "god" doesn't like the fact that I demand a higher standard of morality from him than he's capable of, that's no reason for me to say sorry. I see no reason to bow to such a corrupt "god." Might doesn't make right. Why should I give up my principles? Why should I play mind games for a douchebag?

Anonymous said...

So, in other words the "fudge factor". I read the passage before I asked the question. I just wanted some other opinions because I didn't understand what was so wrong about it. I guess it depends on who reads it. My experiences are the same when it comes to self-righteous people. To them, it's all about blame frames and blame games. We shouldn't find that so surprising though, being that the core of their religion is to murder the only one who never did anything wrong. But that's Gauwd's solution, they'll argue. Scapegoatism. They fail to realize that assigning blame onto others only assures them of already being right and they learn nothing, except the same viscous cycle. How can you learn more from anyone's death instead of someone's life?

It's not about original sin, it is all about learning?, and being!

Anonymous said...

"You got a lot of 'splainin' to do, religion!"

A few thoughts:

itstimecog claims, "Christ says that Mr. Van Robison will be resurrected, judged and found guilty."
LOL! Amazing how people who are convinced that they are "besties" with God come up with such crap.

Anon wrote, "There's a reason why religious people are still the majority. Tangible benefits are provided. In spite of occasional answers of "No.", there is still salve for the soul. We just happen to have gotten burned by a bogus one..."

I realize that believing in a supernatural being who's "looking over you" provides a placebo, tangible benefit- a sort of psychological "salve"
Problem is, people of ALL religions- and not just Christianity- point to supposed answered prayers and miracles as "proof" they're barking up the right deity.
Surely, it's a source of comfort to believe you've been chosen by and are aligned with the greatest power in the universe.

One of the most nutty arguments I've read several times on this blog goes like this: "People who have become atheists after being in the WCG are the WORST KIND of atheists!"
LOL! Oh, the hubris!

I rarely watch TV preachers these days, but earlier this week I watched a bit of Charles Stanley's and Andrew Wommack's preaching TV shows.
Both performances were pukeworthy.
Stanley was batshit crazy, and blew every racist dog-whistle imaginable.
Wommack was busy making completely illogical comparisons - claiming we should believe in God because we also can't see radio waves and germs, but believe in them.
With regard to unanswered prayers (when we ask with proper faith), he said it's because of Satan.

Frankly, I think Christians around the world should have a special Holy Day to recognize and thank Satan for all the wonderful things he's done for their religion.
"It's because of Satan!" is a great excuse for almost everything, even for the UCG's Council of Elders' adult diaper leakage problems.

DennisCDiehl said...

In the practical and laity application of James as often stated by the ministry when one asks about unanswered prayer, regardless of the analysis of the actual intent of the verse, it is one the main answers given to the question.

The answers universally given are:

Your request in inappropriate and you are asking "amiss" even though you won't ever know what is amiss about it.

The answer is "NO"

You haven't given God enough time to answer.

As for God's existence, or the Christian God's existence as well as the validity of the Bible, its actual origins, as well as the concept of atonement by execution, that will always be an individual conclusion to be drawn by living a life of inquiry and experience. "Prove me now herewith and see if I don't ....." Well...OK, will do.

It is very disconcerting and disorienting to learn, and it takes experience, thought and study to do so, that cherished beliefs which are never truths are not true at all. We do fear death because we know we shall die and have a need to know what, if anything, is going to happen to the "me" that I have come to know or the "them" I have come to love.

Learning the Bible is not the book it has been advertised to be can be equally a challenge but it's contradictions, politic, agenda, authorship and origins is very interesting when to learn them doesn't scare the hell out of you. Actually scaring the idea of hell out of you can be a good thing!

I will always say that if the COG's knew the actual purpose, time frame , origin and intent of the Book of Revelation, they'd be free of the foolishness they manage to see and hope for in it. However, they'd also lose their lure in the river and rocks of theological reality.

Anonymous said...

One thing is undeniable. There is a sustained attempt on most of these sites to hard sell atheism as the only rational antidote for, and perfect solution to all things Armstrong. This appears, at times, to be radical overcompensation for something or other, making one wonder whom its preachers are attempting to convince. However, anyone familiar with Armstrongism would instantly comprehend that the need for overcompensation which it breeds is an inescapable after-effect in so many ways. Armstrongism is the gift which keeps on taking, a modification in all of our lives which like any mass trauma, continues to exert power. It's why in our own little addiction recovery program, evangelical atheism is the rule, rather than quiet, personal, existential atheism. This is in fact, not atheism at all. It is antitheism, a belief in thought control, to the extent of angry activism in the direction of stamping out religion. Still, It is totally understandable as a reaction, even if it is yet another enslaving cliche, another brand of limbo, another form of negativity. Aspects of this, too, must pass, in deference to facillitating healing and recovery.

Anonymous said...

"One thing is undeniable."

Is that it works both ways.

"There is a sustained attempt on most of these {Armstrongists} to hard sell {Armstrongism, BI} as the only rational antidote for, and perfect solution to all things {about life}."

Both opposing sides can have or develop the same attitude and behaviours like self-rightousness, seriousness, and self-importance. It doesn't matter what religion we pick or any religion we choose to ignore. If the majority of the people from both sides changed that about themselves, we would have a much better civilization. What good is a civilization if we are no longer interested in being civilized to each other.

BTW, I am agnostic.

Retired Prof said...

Anon 8:31, there are indeed some "hard sell" atheists around, but your characterization of the site overstates their influence. Your comment seems to reflect their exaggerated impact on you rather than their proportional contribution to the conversation.

Philosophically, I am an agnostic, since I admit there is no way to prove the non-existence of any god. In practice, however, you can reasonably call me an atheist, since I have looked at the odds and concluded it is safe to act as if no god will ever rain retribution on my head. Even when defending this position, I recognize that nearly all members of our species over the millennia (200 of them and counting) have mostly believed in deities. And we have thrived--probably not because we were protected by deities, but because the rituals we practiced unified our communities and the rules supposedly enforced by the gods promoted ethical systems that facilitated human transactions. We succeed best in living long enough to pass on our genes in unified, smoothly-operating groups.

For that reason, I acknowledge that Byker Bob, who has regained belief in a god (but one different from the one Armstrong claimed to represent) is probably a better model to follow for most people exiting from the cult than I am. I hope, even so, that by assuring people it is almost certainly safe to abandon Armstrong's teachings, I have encouraged a few, even though I must admit that BB has helped many more. He is a wise man worth paying attention to. It is the same with many other commenters, who advocate a wide range of ideas.

It is not the purpose behind this site to promote atheism, but to promote healing among people damaged by Armstrongism. Every such person is different, and each should feel free to adopt those ideas tossed around here that fit their personality and their circumstances. Also, of course, to reject any that they fear will damage them further. That is why I and others appreciate NO2HWA's practice of allowing such a free-wheeling discussion. Believers are expert at cherry-picking verses from the Bible that meet their psychological needs. Let both believers and doubters also pick and choose among the comments offered here.

Anonymous said...


Way Kewl. Ah hain't no Armstrongite, neither. But, I agree. Mostly COGgers tread lightly because they're just here to learn about what's really going on in their splinters. But, occasionally Armstrongites'll try to peddle their stuff here, too, or the door is just now getting partially opened, and they might want to hear an alternative take. It's all good. We just don't want them scared off because the atheists seem like they're trying to win an argument, imply that they are stupid and incapable of rational thought, or want to reprogram them. It's happened before on other sites to people with questions who were invited by friends that had already left the church, and we've gotten chastised by them later for running them off.

Anonymous said...

The sad truth is that we all got "hoodwinked" by a con man. It is hard for those who are taken advantage of to believe they were, it makes all of the sacrifice for nothing. That is why so many people hold on to beliefs that were made by a man who plagiarized them from others, for a profit and for his ego. Not one of his "predictions" has ever come to pass for him, or the many false prophets of today, such as Dave Pack. Dave can even change what his idol HWA taught, and the gullible continue to follow a man. Just as those in WCG followed HWA. And when today's splinter leaders die off, a new crop of ministers will continue to deceive as long as the cash continues to flow...

Hoss said...

In an episode of Happy Days, Richie tells Fonz Love makes the world go round, and Fonz corrects him, saying Bull makes the world go round..

I asked a number of people why the USA has such a high rate of gun violence, far higher than Canada, Australia, and western European countries. The responses seemed to be just apologetic excuses. Later, I heard a reason that seemed to make sense: Fear. We have been in a constant state of fear.

Perhaps the cliche should be, Fear makes the world go round.

Byker Bob said...

Thanks, RP. I hope that by the grace of God I am able to help some of our former brethren. It is indeed encouraging for the appropriate folks to realize that as you revisit and troubleshoot Armstrongism, you don't need to give up on God and Jesus. The Armstrong leaders are not the gatekeepers! Some folks do give up, but I believe they are going to be ok, brought through it all by a Being that will never give up on them. If I end up being wrong, at worst, what will happen to me is what I believed when I was an atheist: the end of my life will simply be the end of my life. It seems so much nicer, though, to know that we will be healed and repaired by someone who loves us. I also believe that many people are going to be shocked when they see our well intentioned and good living atheist brothers and sisters in the Kingdom! All of our past, present, and future sins are forgiven!


itstimecog said...

Once again BB, you nailed it right on the head. That is exactly what scripture tells us and it's easily proven.
Well done.

Anonymous said...

Jesus Christ did not die for our sins.
He died because we murdered Him because we didn't like where he was going{the narrow path}. "Blasphemy!", they would say. I disagree. From my experiences, they are the ones who tend to behave in the most blasphemous ways towards others, and you can include God in that as well. Fundamentalists must disavow anybody who has better character than themselves, no matter how much they emulate Christ's character. They will say "Good people are nice and all that blah blah etc.,....But they have kicked God out of the picture and that's just not right! My Bible tells me so!" "I have proved it beyound any doubt!!" "You MUST SUBMIT to God, not man!!!" Does anybody else see the irony in that?
First of all, how the hell can you kick God, if he exists, out of anything!
Secondly, from reading the experiences that are shared here, it is Armstrongism that is trying to kick God out of you.
So, I still hold out hope that Jesus Christ was some kind of an Avatar who was ahead of his time. Even Carl Sagan has said that there is no finer example of the 'golden creed' than in the gospel of Mathew.

Last week, my nephew emailed me some links that he thought I might like. So, hear is one in particular that blew my mind and is appropiate to the point I am trying to make.
A retelling of an Epic Story.


Anonymous said...

no, the point is that atheist are only as good as how safe and well fed they find themselves; you can afford to take such a pov because we today have been estranged from the literal vulnerability of being flesh and blood, a vulnerability that was absolutely manifest for thousands of years until the advent of the english industrial revolution, a time, not coincidental to the time of darwinism, and the co evil of his relatives espousing of eugenics...

and your mention of those deviants that acknowledge Christ yet commit sin has nothing to do with whether or not God are talking about they what believe in God yet sin as if there is a connection between the sins of those who profess God and the fact of the existence of God...that is illogical...

Hoss said...

BB wrote: troubleshoot Armstrongism

Brilliant! I'm a bit annoyed at Bob Thiel always referring to COG-critical blogs being "anti-COG" and atheist websites. "Troubleshooting Armistrongism" - thanks for a nice piece of wordcraft.

Anonymous said...

responding to anon October 1, 2016 at 9:50 AM,

"..the point is that {atheist AND armstrongists} are only as good as how safe and well fed they find themselves"

Kind of like a cult?

" can afford to take such a pov because we today have been estranged from the literal vulnerability of being flesh and blood,.."

It doesn't matter what you or I asume, we are still mortal. Nothing can change that,...yet.

"the advent of the english industrial revolution":

It started with Galileo, because religion got scared. The church imprisoned him because he was a threat to their 'group think' and the power that they held. It was effective science that has improved our standards of living in a way the church could only dream of. Better guns, better butter. Also, science is NOT a closed book, unlike the bible which they claim IS.

Rejecting Atheism.


Byker Bob said...

Anon 9:50, the fact is that our reality in the present dictates to a great extent how we even get to live our lives. The conditions pre-Industrial Revolution, or even pre-Keynsian economy were not some sort of perfect standard by which we should judge today. The zeitgeist of those eras is gone, never to return. All we we have is what exists today (WYSIWYG), the present, and living within that context is what we must do in order to be functional, and hopefully learn, grow, become edified, and give back to our communities.

Even someone still in the Armstrong movement should be able to partially understand that from what was taught about the 7 churches of Revelation. The bogus "era" theory aside, according to the written words, the people in those settings had to live their lives within them, and to learn and grow. Those situations were not magically reversed to a more "normal" or Godly time, whatever we all think that normal might have been.

It is sad sometimes to see our former brethren still in a box.