Author Topic: Celestial North Korea revisited  (Read 381 times)

Celestial North Korea revisited
« on: December 18, 2018, 03:43:55 PM »
Christopher Hitchens called religion a celestial North Korea--slavery to a totalitarian, under constant surveillance for thought crime. It is an argument I've often heard repeated in an attempt to convince the religious and It is an argument that I've often found convincing. Naturally we look at North Korea and are repulsed by the brutality and assure ourselves that we--everyone--would obviously choose freedom. But isn't that ignoring half the proposition?

Let's take "Celestial North Korea" seriously for a moment. Imagine North Korea--the same repressive regime, gulags, torture, ect. But all 3 Kims are still alive (Father, Son and Holy, eh, something), have magical powers and use them to reward their followers. You have to kowtow to the glories of the Kims, but in exchange no one gets hungry or sick or dies. Not just "Mussolini made the trains run on time" but paradise in exchange for worshiping mini-Hitler. Every time someone leaves a nursing home after visiting Alzheimer ravaged Mom a missionary comes up and says "Kim can make your mother whole again, if you just praise him". Every time a child dies of cancer a missionary promises that Kim can resurrect the child to an eternity of bliss, if only you lick Kim's boots. And Kim actually does preform those miracles.

Wouldn't people accept Kim's offer? If I were desperate enough--facing the death of a loved one--wouldn't I be powerfully tempted?
Further, and most disturbingly, wouldn't people actually come to love North Korea and the Kims? If their child were brought back to life, their parent restored, their every need fulfilled wouldn't they come to think that the Kims deserved the love and praise they demanded? Wouldn't they think that anyone who refused would deserve the horrible punishments meted out? How often have you heard a Christian say something along the lines of "god is entitled to your worship because he gave you life and sustains you"?

Taken seriously, I'm afraid that Celestial North Korea is not an attack on religion but simply an explanation for it.
"Observe that noses were made to wear spectacles; and so we have spectacles. Legs were visibly instituted to be breeched, and we have breeches" VoltaireοΏ½s Candide

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2018, 04:09:07 PM »
But "Kim" does none of those things, so it's all merely false hope. It's lies designed to pull in desperate, gullible people and chain them to the walls of a dungeon, and make them give the leaders of the "Kim" religion all their worldly goods.
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The phrase "freedom of religion" means "no freedom from religion."

Offline Baruch

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2018, 07:23:26 PM »
The N Koreans have their own secular religion, that barely resembles Marxism ...

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Certainly monarchial leadership isn't Marxist.
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Offline Cavebear

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2018, 09:29:56 AM »
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You lost it at "but in exchange no one gets hungry or sick or dies. "  They do.  All 3 in fact.  Try again...

And I'll add that we went through this crap with Hitler and Stalin and Mao (sort of) in WWII.  What kind of bridges are you trying to sell?
« Last Edit: December 21, 2018, 09:32:35 AM by Cavebear »
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2019, 05:59:50 PM »
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How often have you heard a Christian say something along the lines of "god is entitled to your worship because he gave you life and sustains you"?

If Christ or Kim or Donald Duck wish to do good things for me, then they should do so and earn my love and respect. I can't love somebody just because that person demands that I do so. Christ would be awfully petty to command I show him gratitude. Is that why he died for me? Does he need worship to stoke his ego?

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2019, 06:07:11 PM »
Well, the God of the OT did all sorts of things just to make people think of him with awe, so the God of the NT probably isn't any different.
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Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2019, 07:30:02 PM »
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Well, the God of the OT did all sorts of things just to make people think of him with awe, so the God of the NT probably isn't any different.

If God is perfect, then he's be perfectly complete and needs nobody to think of him with awe. People, on the other hand, might well wish to create a God who shows off his power to impress the masses and garners their allegiance and support. Since the Bible god fits the latter, then I think it's reasonable to assume that people created him.

Re: Celestial North Korea revisited
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2019, 07:31:58 PM »
Agreed, he was created by people to have control over other people.
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