Thought of the day

Random travel things that interest me more than my readers: It looks like my Haiti trip will be in March, not January (though everything is confirmed now). It is becoming more and more certain that I will be in Italy this summer, though the precise nature of the trip – whether it is guided or winged – has not been determined. And I very well may rejoin members of my Kilimanjaro trip for my planned hike up Aconcagua in Argentina – but about 6-18 months earlier than I originally thought (that is, the end of next year instead of 2013 or 2014).

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.

~Mark Twain

Good. Everyone hated Raphael anyway.

Now if it was Michelangelo, I would be upset.

Jesus the liar

I’ve had conversations where I’ve asked people to tell me who they think is among the greatest humans to have ever lived. Unsurprisingly, Jesus is a common answer. And for a long time I didn’t disagree. After all, the things Jesus said really aren’t represented by the religious, so it isn’t so much to say he was a good person. Of course, I’m granting that he really did exist, but that’s another discussion.

But I’ve been thinking. Sure, Jesus said some good things. Of course, other philosophers have said the same good things – and done so with actual, ya know, reasons – but good is good. Except that pesky detail about using reason is where things get sticky. Okay, Jesus wasn’t great at arguing his case logically (that part is well represented by the religious), and that obviously doesn’t make him a bad person by any means, but consider the way he did argue his case: he lied. He claimed he was a divine being from some magic place. He said he had a mandate from the one true god to save the world. Whether it was an actual man named Jesus who said those things or if scribes simply made them up along with the miracles they invented, none of it is true. Not a bit. It’s all a lie.

I don’t know about anybody else, but I have trouble ranking a fundamental liar among the greatest people the world has ever seen.