Saturday 18 July 2009

Animal crackers, again

Another anonymous animal liberationist writes in trying to tell me that the Crucifixion is really all about animal liberation and liberating animals to reason and speak like Balaam's ass.

Yes, really! I kid ye not.

Could this be Balaam's crocodile trying to tell the man in the boat something?
Or does he just want to eat him?

He writes:

"Was not the Christian religion born of the crucifixion? Of God, in human form, dying on the cross like an animal without rights?"

and this:

"There is nothing in Scripture that states that the Ten Commandments apply only to humans. Far from it, God seems to incrementally introduce fairer treatment for more animals."

and this:

"Men seem to lock themselves into very wicked ways through long tradition, practices which God attempts to save them from."

Total fantasy, of course.

And like many a believer in a fantastic creed, he drives deeper and deeper into fantasy and unreality.

God became MAN, from the womb of the Virgin Mary, in order to save us.
God did NOT (repeat NOT) become an animal.

Our Lord and Saviour, JESUS CHRIST, became MAN for us. He did not become animal.

Et homo factus est...


Et animal factus est...

To liken Him to an "animal without rights" and merely "in human form" is a supreme blasphemy, as I need hardly add.

He then fantasises over the Ten Commandments, pretending they are for animals as well as men and that animals can choose not to murder, commit adultery, covet, lie and, in other ways, sin, when he knows perfectly well that they have no such power of free will.

He pretends, next, that it is all about God incrementally introducing "fairer treatment for more animals".

Where does it say so in Scripture, doctrine or tradition?

Ah, err, well.... nowhere actually. But - hey! - why should that worry Mr Fantasy?

And, of course, he is opposed to "long tradition". He has to be! If not he'd have to admit that the Church never taught the nonsense he comes out with and that all Christian tradition is against him.

Poor fellow, I fear we may see him, ere long, manning the barricades in the manner of David Koresh and his Branch Davidians of the aptly named Waco, or Jim Jones, the Jonestown leader in Guyana.

Here is the woman animal liberationist who thought she could have a cosy chat with a Polar bear.
It mauled her.

His view is about as far away from Roman Catholicism - or, indeed, any form of Christianity - as even the most bizarre and evil of creeds are.

His is a deadly, evil creed which seeks not to raise animals up to the level of humans (which is, anyway, impossible) but to drag man down to the level of dumb animals.

Man was not destined to be an animal but rather a rational being, free to choose to obey his Creator. Thus, to try to make of him an animal results only in making him far lower than any animal and more like a devil.

Cronos eating his own children by Goya.
Cannibalism is the logical flip side of animal liberationism.

If men are no more than animals then they can, like animals, be subject to abortion, infanticide, abandonment, euthanasia, cannibalism and a host of other actions which animals, acting from mere instinct, do to each other but which, for men, endowed with reason and free will, to do to each other, would be deeply evil.

His odious and detestable creed is truly diabolical and, did he but know it, the invention of a satanic mind.

Let us pray for him and those like him that they may be released from the spell that has been cast over them and which has darkened their reason to such an extent that they cannot distinguish, any longer, between men and animals.

A rather well-known animal liberationist.
He used to say "I am no admirer of the poacher, particularly as I am a vegetarian"
Let us never forget what he did to men, this great "animal lover".



Anonymous said...

Brilliant stuff! I wonder if fish have the right not to be shot in a barrel.

Tribunus said...

Indeed! Or ants not to be trodden on? Or flies not to be swatted? Or amoebae not to be crushed?

It's crackers.

Barry Miles said...

Tribunus! I see you mention ants on 19th July. There is a message for you in God's word: “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!” (Proverbs 6, 6-8). Deliberately crushing them seems to not quite be in the spirit of this verse, methinks.

Although in our own proud, self-centred way we think of the "Word made flesh" as for our own private human benefit, many scriptures attest to Christ saving the whole creation. I, for one, would not expect anything less of God's unrestricted love.

I find your blog so stimulating that I have become addicted to replying as more thoughts come into my head!

Barry Miles

Tribunus said...

Thanks for these comments, Barry, but the other post, being rants, have had to be deleted.

Sorry, Barry, but this blog is not an advertising hoarding for your special pleading, misquoting, skewing, twisting of meaning and heterodox theology.

I'm sure you're a jolly nice chap but I'm afraid your views on animals are gibberish.

So I'm afraid your other rants have been deleted.

They are also not very honest.

If you want a proper discussion on the issue then fine but rants are out, I'm afraid.

Like many a Catholic animal libber, you deviously quote from Newman's Parochial and Plain Sermons without mentioning:

(a) that they were written when Newman was an Anglican and not a Catholic;

(b) that they are not intended to be a Christian animal libber manifesto but rather an exercise in drawing comparisons understandable to his 19th century readers so that they can move on to understand higher things;

(c) that he does not, by any stretch of the imagination, pretend that animals are saved by Christ precisely because he knows that animals do not have rational souls;

(d) There were animal libbers of a sort in the 19th century and some of them were more interested in stray cats than they were in hungry, exploited and abandoned children (so much for your claim that animal libbing leads to compassion!). Newman sought to turn the thoughts of these people back to love of humanity from the perverted substitute god that they had created for themselves.

To pretend otherwise is simply a lie.

And (let me remind you me) it is a sin to lie - especially about sacred things.

Let me also remind you to whom Newman dedicated his P & P Sermons (and that in 1834):


It is a characteristic of the heterodox that they claim to interpret Scripture according to their own fancy and not according to the teachings of the Church.

You appear to be no exception, alas.

It is no part of orthodox Catholic theology that Christ came to save the souls of animals.

Get used to it, Barry.

St Irenaeus said "the glory of God is living man". That is because we are made in His image. Not because we deserve it but because that is what God Himself wanted.

If you don't like that, then you'd better take it up with God since it is His idea. You can explain to Him why you think He's wrong.

And, in the meantime, I shall pray for your conversion.

Barry Miles said...

OK, so one of my posts was a bit of a wind up in your own style - fair enough. (In the past you have likened me to Hitler and told me I was going to hell - I thought my wind up was gentle and a bit humorous in comparison).

But calling a post which was 90% direct quote from Newman a rant? A bit off, I thought; especially as you then posted criticism of my post without showing people what I had ACTUALLY said - and carefully avoided mentioning what Newman had said too. This is not regarded as accepted or honourable editorial or academic practice, by the way.

So why not publish in a post the quotation from Newman's sermon which I provided - unedited of course so that it is shown in context? I actually think you are reluctant to publish this as you don't want your readers to see it - from a man who is now on the road to beatification! Will you censor this post too, though?

Tribunus said...

No, very happy to post reasonable arguments but not dishonesty or ranting.

Even your current post is not honest.

I have not likened you to Hitler, for instance, but only pointed out that Hitler, too, was an animal libber - which is no more than a fact.

If you think that makes you like Hitler then that is your own comparison rather than mine.

If you are going to Hell that is a choice of your own, not any claim I have made.

I note that you do not deny the dishonesty of your quoting Newman to support your animal lib position.

Indeed, you do not even dare address it because you know he was no animal libber.

It is you, in fact, who carefully avoid mentioning the truth.

And that is what is not regarded as honourable editorial or academic practice, by the way.

For you to speak of quotes "in context" simply worsens your position since it is was you who so brazenly quoted Newman out of context. So much so that you don't even try to address the points, let alone rebut them.

So any reluctance to face the truth is yours.

Even now, you continue to pretend that Newman is being beatified for being some sort of animal libber when, in truth, you know that is simply false.

You cannot even bring yourself to admit that he wrote the words you quote when he was a Protestant and not a Catholic.

The truth is that he was trying to appeal to the sort of people (like you, perhaps?) who considered animals more important than humans. There were plenty in his time, as now, but he was certainly not one of them.

But you cannot even bring yourself to address this fact. Instead, you merely repeat yourself.

This is the kind of devious obstinacy that is so much a characteristic of the heterodox.

Are you going to go down that route?

Or will you admit the truth?

Barry Miles said...

Tribunus! Greetings. Why don't you let your readers see Newman's WHOLE sermon so they can decide for themselves? I can provide it and it's published anyway. If not, will you at least let me tell them where they can find it? I think they must all be wondering what we're both talking about. I trust them to draw their own conclusions, don't you? You have published blogs from unreformed protestants before, and this one became a Catholic Cardinal!

Sermons are not about "charters" - they make theological points, as this one does. I didn't rebut your point about dishonesty because again how would the other bloggers know what we're talking about. It is much better that the others should make up their own minds rather than just reading our opinions.

Just a reminder of how this blog started. You accused someone of supreme blasphemy because they compared Jesus' defencelessness on the cross to the defencelessness of an animal. I pointed out that Newman did a sermon doing the same. By now I think your bloggers must be really curious as to what Newman actually said. Why are you so anxious not to show them?

By the way, old chap, my other one that you wouldn't publish wasn't really a rant - it was meant to be a bit of humour. I think you would make a great drinking companion. I wonder if you live near me. I'm sure we could have a great laugh face to face! (feel free to edit out this last para if you don't want to publish it)



Tribunus said...

Greetings reciprocated, Barry.

I have given readers the source - they can look it up for themselves. In any case, it is already posted on loads of looney animal libber websites.

More importantly, I note that you are still ducking the fact that Newman was not an animal libber, did not share your views, even when, as here, he was still a Protestant (a fact you are still in denial over).

Just a reminder of why your arguments are not honest.

At no point did I accuse anyone of, as you mendaciously put it: "supreme blasphemy because they compared Jesus' defencelessness on the cross to the defencelessness of an animal".

You clearly have a problem reading what I wrote. Either that or you are once again up to your old tricks of making things up.

Here's what I wrote (so that at least others can see even if you refuse to):

"Our Lord and Saviour, JESUS CHRIST, became MAN for us. He did not become animal.

Et homo factus est...not Et animal factus est...

To liken Him to an 'animal without rights' and merely 'in human form' is a supreme blasphemy, as I need hardly add"

Nothing to do with "defencelessness". You have simply failed to use your eyes.

Forgive me for saying so, but it's difficult to know whether you are serious or just having a leg-pull, Barry.

It's difficult to credit that someone might seriously believe that Christ became incarnate as an animal not a human, as you seem to be suggesting.

Barry Miles said...

Hi Tribunus, thought you might be interested in this. Do you agree with John Paul II and what do you think of Professor Molari’s comment? Enjoy!

Pope John Paul II declared in a public audience in 1990 that 'also the animals possess a soul and men must love and feel solidarity with our smaller brethren'. He went on to state that all animals are 'fruit of the creative action of the Holy Spirit and merit respect' and that they are 'as near to God as men are'.

The Pope then mentions the special relationship of mankind with God as being created in His image and likeness and continues. 'However,' he goes on 'other texts state that animals have the breath of life and were given it by God. In this respect, man, created by the hand of God, is identical with all other living creatures. And so in Psalm 104 there is no distinction between man and beasts when it reads, addressing God: " … Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth." The existence therefore,' the Holy Father reminds us, 'of all living creatures depends on the living spirit/breath of God that not only creates but also sustains and renews the face of the earth.'

The then professor of theology and dogma at the University of Urbino, Carlo Molari, called it 'very important and significant. It is a "sign of the times" because it demonstrates the Church's desire and deep concern to clarify present confused thinking and attitudes towards the animal kingdom. There should be no need, but the Pontiff, in reiterating that animals came into being because of the direct action of the "breath" of God, wanted to say that also these creatures, as well as man, are possessed of the divine spark of life and that living quality that is the soul. And are therefore not inferior beings or only of a purely material reality.'

Best wishes

Tribunus said...

No problem here, Barry.

Animals have animal souls - not rational souls. The Pope says nothing new, therefore.

Once again you simply wrest a false meaning out of the Pope's words.

Animals and men have this in common, says the Pope: "thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust".

Perfectly true but that does not make them equal to men nor give them rational souls.

They are still but dumb animals and cannot choose good or evil, as man can.

Likewise the Pope says: "The existence therefore of all living creatures depends on the living spirit/breath of God that not only creates but also sustains and renews the face of the earth".

Also perfectly true but nowhere does this confer upon animals - as you falsely suggest - that they have rational souls like men. They simply do not.

There is another error that you make and have in common with many who:

(a) do not understand the teaching authority of the Catholic Church; and

(b) take words and meanings completely out of context so as to vest in them a meaning that suits their particular false ideology or error but is flatly opposed to Catholic teaching.

The Catholic Church teaches that its own teaching office is hierarchical.

At the top of the hierarchy is the infallible teaching of the Magisterium.

At the other end of the scale are mere passing speeches made by popes to particular gatherings.

The false heterodox make no distinction between the two so that they can then dishonestly misrepresent the true teaching of the Church.

That is what liars, hypocrites, cheats and heterodox teachers have been doing since Simon Magus fell dead at the feet of the Apostle.

The animal libbers are but little different.

Not every word that comes out of the mouth of a pope is infallibly true - far from it.

But you will find no authoritative teaching of any pope or Council of the Catholic Church that even begins to teach that animals have rational souls like men or that they are to be put on a par with men.

No pope or Council has ever taught such obvious twaddle.

Animal libbers delude themselves into believing otherwise.

If, however, you are still obstinate then I will give you a challenge: I challenge you to find any authoritative teaching of the Catholic Church that supports your thesis that animals have the same rational souls as men, can choose good and evil like men and are on a moral par with men.

And let me remind you: your bizarre and out of context misinterpretation of a passing speech of a pope or bishops is not authoritative.

It must be the formal teaching of the Magisterium (i.e of a pope or Council) for you to claim it as Catholic teaching.

Go on then. See if you can do it.

And if you can't then consider the possibility that you are simply inventing your own doctrines and pretending they are Catholic.

Over to you, Barry, and happy hunting!

Barry Miles said...

Tribunus! Nearly everything you say in all your posts about what I think is a product of your own imagination. For example, I didn't say anything about the Pope's comment. I quoted it and asked you what you thought.

I should confess that I have a special interest in animal theology and have studied, written and spoken on it for about 25 years. If you were to read my published booklets, letters and articles you would find they bear limited relation to the beliefs you have assumed I hold. I agree with much of what you say about the value of humans - it's just that I think you undervalue the status of animals. I am more guided by Scripture than Catholic formal doctrine. That is, of course, because I am not a Catholic, although you have assumed I was.

Do you know what I find funny? I bet you and I are the only ones reading our own exchanges! Well, I think we've done a few rounds, so I'm going to sign off now on this bout, but I may be back to haunt you on a future occasion - something for us both to look forward to, eh?

I must say it's been a great bit of knock-about. Thanks for the pleasure. Pity you didn't respond to my invitation that you'd be an entertaining drinking companion.

Until we meet again....

Best wishes

Barry Miles

Tribunus said...

Dear Barry,

No - you did not just quote the Pope. You quoted - favourably - Professor Carlo Molari and as if he were the last word on the subject, when, in fact, he was giving his own personal, and somewhat eccentric, view.

You quote Molari as saying: "animals came into being because of the direct action of the 'breath' of God [and the Pope] wanted to say that also these creatures, as well as man, are possessed of the divine spark of life and that living quality that is the soul. And are therefore not inferior beings or only of a purely material reality".

In short, he (and you) think that animals have souls like men and are not inferior to men.

That is flatly contrary to all orthodox Christian teaching.

It does not surprise me that you have a "special interest in animal theology and have studied, written and spoken on it for about 25 years".

It is clearly more than a passing phase for you.

There is no such thing as "animal theology" if by that you mean that animals are capable of appreciating theology.

There might be, however, a theology of animals but it can only relate to the way in which they can and should be used by humans.

You say that you are "more guided by Scripture" than formal doctrine but on that basis you can make Scripture say pretty much whatever you like.

The so-called Deutsche Christen" of the 1930s claimed that Scripture supported Nazi doctrine, including their anti-Semitism, and one of their leaders, Muller, was made the Reich bishop by Hitler.

There are always misguided people who think that the fashionable fads and theories of the day, however wacky, can be reconciled with Scripture.

It stems from the very human desire to be accepted by the community and to be loved by everyone.

That desire is right and proper within due limits but it becomes inordinate - and thus sinful - when it exceeds proper limits and embraces profoundly anti-rational doctrines like those of the animal lib movement.

You say that if I were to "read [your] published booklets, letters and articles [I] would find they bear limited relation to the beliefs [I] have assumed [you] hold".

I hope that is so but, given what I have read so far, I have a few doubts about that but do please point me to some of them so I can judge for myself.

You do not explain what you mean by the statement "I think you undervalue the status of animals" if, in fact, you do not mean what you have hitherto indicated, namely that animals have a relationship with God like men and should be accorded rights like men. That would be to give to animals a status they do not - and cannot - have.

By all means do come back in the future. I have enjoyed exchanging views with you.

Tribunus said...


For the avoidance of doubt as to my own views, I do not accept that animals have rights, at least not in any human sense, but I do accept that wanton cruelty to animals is wrong.

That is not because animals have "rights" but because it is morally bad for humans to practice cruelty, even if only against animals.

For the further avoidance of doubt, I do not consider it cruel to kill and eat animals.

That is, indeed, one of the reasons God put them on earth.

However, to derive enjoyment by inflicting pain upon them is a form of perversion. No hunter I have hunted with ever behaved like that and, if he did, he would be packed off by his fellow hunters as some sort of pervert to be shunned and avoided.

In heaven, there will be no killing or eating so the issue will not arise.

In heaven we shall be sustained by the love of God and shall be immortal beings like Him, without the need for physical growth and development and thus for food and drink, as we are here below. Our pleasure and contentment will be in loving and praising God which will be greater by far than any pleasure or contentment we could ever imagine, here below.

Moreover, the pleasure that we currently derive from animals will also be there in some mysterious but currently inexplicable way.

That does not mean that granny's little doggy Spot will go to heaven in some anthropomorphic way but it does mean that granny will derive the same pleasure she currently gets from Spot, a millionfold in heaven.