Monday, March 31, 2008


praiseNull is taking a test today. Let's all pray for...uh, wish him good lu...uhm, send him good, no. Keep him in our thoughts? Oh, hell with it. No, shit.

I've been thinking about how saturated the language is with religious and mystical language, more so since my 3 year old started saying Bless You when anyone sneezes. Now, no one around HERE says that. I say gesundheit. He must've picked it up at school.

But really. Hell in a handbasket, hell of a day, oh god, oh jesus, christ moveit already, bless you, hallelujia (used for all kinds of things non-goddy). Even "fuck", the big kahuna of swearing, had origin ties to religion:

The usually accepted first known occurrence is in code in a poem in a mixture of Latin and English composed some time before 1500. The poem, which satirizes the Carmelite friars of Cambridge, England, takes its title, "Flen flyys", from the first words of its opening line, "Flen, flyys, and freris" (= "Fleas, flies, and friars"). The line that contains fuck reads "Non sunt in coeli, quia gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk". Removing the substitution cipher[1] on the phrase "gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk" yields "non sunt in coeli, quia fvccant vvivys of heli", which translated means "they are not in heaven because they fuck wives of Ely" (fvccant is a fake Latin form).[2] The phrase was coded likely because it accused some Church personnel of misbehaving; it is uncertain to what extent the word "fuck" was considered acceptable at the time.
(Quoted from Wikipedia, and here's an article about the same thing)

Amazing, isn't it? The word we love the most, from the organization we like...well, maybe not the least - the Nazis, KKK, and NAMBLA are running a good race - but pretty close.

A web search on language and religion didn't net me much, but etymology "religious language" , amusingly, pointed me to the Atheism page of Wiki, but that's about it. I'll look more in depth later. But for now, this from Wiki-Atheism:
Logical positivism and scientism paved the way for neopositivism, analytical philosophy, structuralism, and naturalism. Neopositivism and analytical philosophy discarded classical rationalism and metaphysics in favor of strict empiricism and epistemological nominalism. Proponents such as Bertrand Russell emphatically rejected belief in God. In his early work, Ludwig Wittgenstein attempted to separate metaphysical and supernatural language from rational discourse. A. J. Ayer asserted the unverifiability and meaninglessness of religious statements, citing his adherence to the empirical sciences.

Edit: Well well well, Dawkins strikes again:
There is every reason to think that famous Einsteinisms like 'God is subtle but he is not malicious' or 'He does not play dice' or 'Did God have a choice in creating the Universe?' are pantheistic, not deistic, and certainly not theistic. 'God does not play dice' should be translated as "Randomness does not lie at the heart of all things.' 'Did God have a choice in creating the Universe?' means 'Could the universe have begun in any other way?' Einstein was using 'God' in a purely metaphorical, poetic sense. So is Stephen Hawking, and so are most of those physicists who occasionally slip into the language of religious metaphor.


SurferJesus said...

Now, I've always read that fuck came from old england where they would try some poor woman 'for unlawful carnal knowledge' when she had sex out of wedlock. Then these became known as fuck trials.

praiseNull said...

Well, the gays and abortionists messed me up again as God's wrath prevented me from taking the test.

Or maybe it was my procrastinating for three months and then trying to make everything happen in one day. All the pieces almost came together, but I just ran out of time. Why doesn't 7-11 run 24-hour testing centers?

Faithinate said...

That's addressed in the article. Sez it's bunk.