• Duterte’s legacy: Liberation from religion?

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    RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO

    RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO

    THAT seems unlikely, as Catholicism has brainwashed over 20 generations of Filipinos, as Christianity has Western civilization for about two centuries, and its hold on people’s superstitious minds will probably last for another millennium.

    Still, President Duterte is not only the first Philippine President ever, but also the first national or even local political leader of note, to take on the Church, and to show his disdain for it. He minced no words last Tuesday: “You are in palaces while your faithful are in squatter areas and then you talk about sanctity? What is your moral ascendancy in the Philippines?” Religion? What is the meaning of it?”

    “I challenge the Catholic Church. You are full of s**t. You all smell bad, corruption and all,” the President said on Tuesday.

    Nobody but only the kind of person Duterte is could have spewed such vitriol on the Church: “Gago”, he described himself, using that term to mean an unorthodox person who does what he thinks is right and doesn’t care what others think about him.

    With those kind of words, and his relentlessness—remember his cursing of the Pope for causing traffic in the election period? – in criticizing the Church, Duterte is at least lighting a candle in the vast dark landscape of Filipinos’ worldview, by which they would risk life and limb to touch a wooden statue so they’d get a boon from the Deity, such as visa to the US or a brand-new SUV.*

    Duterte is certainly treading on very dangerous ground in challenging religion. Confronting one’s beliefs developed since childhood is not for the faint of heart, as this wakes one up to the realization of an uncaring cold, universe. What if one wakes up in the middle of the night, and realizes that this – this life – is it, and there’s no magical territory one migrates to after death?

    Philippine President, angry at His clerics

    Indeed, most Filipinos choose, whether they realize it or not, to have as their mindset throughout their lives what is called Pascal’s Wager (which that 17th century philosopher and mathematician formulated): “If you believe in God, and He exists, you will be rewarded in heaven. And if he doesn’t exist, you won’t know about it, so its best to believe in God.”

    First generations
    Still though, it is challenging to realize that we are probably among the first generations of humankind to have the intellectual tools, and the vast information accumulated by civilization for two thousand years, that could be employed to determine what are superstitious beliefs (made by pre-scientific peoples to make sense of the universe) and what are not, using logical, data-based processes we call the scientific method.

    A crude example of course is that we are certain that the sun doesn’t really rise (much less is it the chariot driven everyday across the firmament by the Titan Helios of ancient Greek mythology) in the East and set in the West. Rather, it is the Earth which is revolving around a medium-sized star, one among gazillions in the universe. And this wasn’t proven by the eyewitness accounts of astronauts who orbited the earth in space vehicles just in the past several decades. Long before them, it was deduced by the 16th century mathematician and astronomer using methods that would be developed to an astounding level of sophistication which we call science.

    It is the same method — in certain disciplines called anthropology, linguistics, and comparative religious studies — that was employed to examine, starting in the 19th century, what most humans on earth believed were divine revelations written by the Deity’s ghost-writers, that is, “Messengers”, i.e., the Jewish Torah, the New Testament, and the Quran.

    However, ancient documents have been even unearthed in the 20th century that shed light on the very human origins of these books that have been considered Words of God, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls in the case of the Torah and the Christian New Testament, and a Syrian-Aramaic text of the Quran.

    Scholarship on the man called Jesus Christ and on the origins of Christianity has exploded, starting in the 1980s, given impetus by the so-called Jesus Seminar, a group of about 150 critical international scholars and laymen founded in 1985 that examined the Bible using modern anthropological, sociological and linguistic methods. There is now a magazine and its Web version called Biblical Anthropology, that studies, using the scientific method, almost every facet of society in biblical times. (Example of findings there is that Nazareth didn’t exist when Jesus was born, as the Bible reports; there was no census called to require the Holy Couple to go to Bethlehem.)

    The writings of these scholars have been such that the debate is no longer whether Jesus is the Son of God – as the Bible claims – but whether he existed, or was merely a fictional character as unreal (but as powerful in impact on a civilization) as mythical gods like Apollo, Osiris and Zarathustra.

    Roman invention
    A recent intriguing scholarly book (Caesar’s Messiah: The Roman Conspiracy to Invent Jesus by Joseph Atwill) even argues that the Jesus myth was invented by the Roman emperors Vespasian and his sons, especially Titus, to create a religion that would counter the passionate belief for a coming military-religious leader termed Messiah of the Jews, who gave the Romans so much trouble that they decided to burn to the ground Jerusalem and its Temple in 70 A.D.

    On the other hand, a book by a scholar argues that Muhammed did not exist at all (Did Muhamed Exist? An Inquiry into Islam’s Obscure Origins, by Robert Spencer), that it was an invention by the Arab military leaders to foster, as most religions have been, zeal in their conquests. How was it so easily invented? By hijacking the Syrian version of Christianity that was emerging in the 7th century, which explains why Islam officially believes in such biblical figures as Moses and Jesus. One interesting finding of one scholar on Islam is that the 72 virgins the Quran said jihadists would enjoy in Paradise was a mistranslation from the Syriac-Aramaic text. What the martyrs would enjoy would be raisins, then an expensive delicacy in the Arabian deserts that were out of reach for ordinary warriors.

    One of the most uninformed, yet prevalent views is that Christianity can’t be wrong as it has survived for more than 2,000 years, despite its persecution.

    This is so totally wrong. Christianity is one of the main religions of the world now, because it was the state religion of one of the biggest and most powerful civilizations the world has seen, Europe. It wasn’t a choice of the vast population of peasants whether to believe in Jesus or not; they had to, or else.

    Similarly, Islam is one of the largest religions on earth, because it was the religion first of the Caliphates that emerged out of the Middle East to conquer vast swathes of the world, as far as India, and then of the Ottoman empire of the 13th century that even nearly overran Christian Europe.

    That should explain why Mithra, Osiris and Zarathustra didn’t become the Deities of world religions because these didn’t become state religions of vast empires that neared the modern era.

    If all Duterte does in his entire six years is to, through his tirades against the Church, make us think about these things, he will leave an important legacy to this nation of superstitious people.

    (*”The first time I joined the Black Nazarene procession, I got my wish for a Tamaraw FX. This year I’m wishing for a Pajero,” a devotee said in an interview with an ABS-CBN reporter a few years back.)

    E-mail: tiglao.manilatimes@gmail.com
    FB: Bobi Tiglao and Rigoberto Tiglao

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    55 Comments

    1. It’s about time the whole country and its inhabitants be freed from the shackles of Christianity brought here by the Spanish friars and continued to this day by hypocritical priests and bishops no different from the Pharisees of biblical times. When it’s convenient, they mouth the “separation of Church and State”, but when it suits them, they interfere in the affairs of State. The CBCP is nothing but an organization of fence-sitters and hecklers.

    2. DIEGO CAGAHASTIAN on

      Once in a while, the Manila Times Op-Ed comes out with a whiff of fresh air like this one by Bobi Tiglao.
      A welcome respite from Ric Saludo and Kit Tatad. How I wish Tiglao would write about the separation
      of church and state, and reinforce the voice of the late Christopher Hitchens in urging Thomas Jefferson
      thus: “Mr. Jefferson, build up that wall.”

    3. I was raised a Catholic and I steadfastly still believe in God. However, I am now only “spiritual” and am no longer “religious.” I pray to God everyday, I make the sign of the cross whenever I drive by a Catholic Church but I rarely go to Sunday mass any longer.

      Although I have been living in the U.S. for 40 years, I still care about what happens back in the Philippines. I am saddened to read that many Filipino Catholic priests are accused of unspeakable crimes and some got involved in government corruption. I am no saint, but I have not committed a major sin.

      I believe it is a sin to conceive a child when you do not have the means to feed, house, cloth, educate and properly raise a human being and that you could have prevented that unwanted pregnancy through the use of modern birth control.

      Widespread poverty and overpopulation in the Philippines is shocking to Filipinos visiting from developed countries, or to any human being for that matter. Yet, the Catholic priests are against the use of modern birth control. That, I believe, is a major sin.

    4. How would we try to live our lives then? what is it that make us pilipinos resilient, prevents us from committing suicide in extreme situations like “Yolanda”.

      Just for a moment forget about the specific negative acts of local catholic clergy. Then try to imagine to lead a life through Christian principles. Will it be inferior or superior to any principles in life at all, or does it matter? will it make us support or destroy life, prevent or contribute to progress civilization and humanity?

      We learn, decide for ourselves, use the gift of intellect to try to lead a useful life, try to contribute to human existence in some way is one such simple principle. If we apply the Christian principles in our lives will it make us less useful, destructive, evil? – maybe not, it might make it easier for all of us.

      IMHO Faith is not a hindrance in living useful productive lives, but use of religion as a tool to subjugate and misled, for power, for personal gain, is the problem. If we know the difference, then we should know everyone’s role and place.

    5. With the exception of the Jesuits and Latin American Liberation Theologists, the Catholic church, has been the church of the oppressors ever since the 3rd century, when the Romans took over the religion (the same Romans who killed Jesus). Anyone even vaguely familiar with Jesus’ teachings will know that Jesus loved the oppressed – and despised the oppressors.

      The church has historically been very close to the oligarchs of society. The church tells the people that suffering is part of life and when you die, you’ll go to heaven – that message is exactly what the oligarchs want people to think. That way, they can continue to exploit the people and continue to rule unquestioned.

      Duterte should reach out to the Liberation Theology faction within the church and invite them to help weed out the corruption within the Philippine Catholic church just as he is attacking political and judicial corruption. This is an opportune time for such action: Pope Francis is a supporter of Liberation Theology

    6. MARIANO PATALINJUG on

      Yonkers, New York
      27 January 2017

      I sincerely compliment ROBERTO D. TIGLAO for this rare scholarly and highly enlightening brief Treatise on the subject of RELIGION, in The Manila Times issue of 27 January 2017.

      The question he poses here is whether Duterte’s legacy to the Filipino people will be their “LIBERATION FROM RELIGION.”

      At the risk of being denounced by a majority of the readers of The Manila Times, I say that there is absolutely no way the 80 million or so Christian Filipinos could ever be “liberated” from the stranglehold of religion. Such is the power of religion, with its clear promise of salvation and a life hereafter shorn of all the woes and the problems of an earthly life, in a place up and out there called “heaven” where they will be in the bosom of a benevolent entity called “God..”

      Duterte can turn black and blue in the face trying to convince the Filipino people that Religion, as Karl Marx put it, is nothing more than “the opium of the people!” but he will go nowhere fast. The Filipino people, educated or not, believe completely and unalterably in Religion in general, and in Christianity in particular–“hook, line, and sinker.”

      MARIANO PATALINJUG
      patalinjugmar@gmail.com

    7. Why does the catholic church invest in stockmarket like owning shares of SMC, BPI, Philex and the likes? not mentioned in the bible at all for Peter and the disciples to engage in business so they could sustain the Church.

    8. Bobi Tiglao maraming salamat! Patok na patok! In the narrative, it initially started alright where the RCC in the PH was attacked of said practices in the clergy, priests, bishops, and all. However, I was lost when the write up ventured into the religious belief of the Catholic Pilipinos, delving into the historical. From the posts sent, I may say, some Pilipinos are not that well read with what the Church Fathers did at the birth of Roman Catholicism [Sol Invictus], the cult, composed of the priests, bishops, cardinals and the Pontifix Maximus, in ancient [pagan] Rome, the head of the principal college of priests; in the papal Roman Catholic Church, a title of the Pope. Really, the crux of the matter is control of the world where before it was the Roman Empire of Emperor Constantine, the first Pope of Papal Rome from Pagan Rome [Mithras], Sol Invictus or Unvanquished Sun, the Sun God. Bobi sa katunayan, wala naman talagang naniniwala sa kanilang mga pinaniniwalaan at sa mga sermon ng pari at obispo dahil hindi sana ganito ka talamak ang corruption sa gobyerno at bansa. Ang pag sisimba ay social convenience lamang at social acceptance, and at most soulless. Why do you think the Vatican Bank is into laundering? Anyway, stick to attacking the RCC priest-bishop practices of control in the PH and perhaps, sometime even the Curia in the Vatican Hills. The Pilipino Catholic faithful and so called Xns will only get lost because for these people, belief is exempt from doubt. You’re at the right track in attacking the politics of the CBCP and the priests. Yes, it will be DU30’s legacy. Proceed!

    9. Man invented god in his image. Proud atheist here.

      Like Digong, I am a product of two Catholic schools in Davao – Holy Cross of Davao (ran by Canadian order, PME) where I spent my grade school and high school. And at Ateneo De Davao University ran by Jesuits.

      I am now 50. But, I threw religion and my ‘sky daddy’ just fifteen years ago. Religion is a drug. And Marx was correct in proclaiming that ” religion is the opium of the people.”. I was like an addict experiencing withdrawal symptoms when I stopped praying and all that religious BS!

      Critical thinking. Lots of it and guts to break free. Science and reason are the essential tools. NO AMOUNT OF RELIGIOUS BRAINWASHING AND INDOCTRINATION CAN SHACKLE YOUR BEAUTIFUL MIND WHICH TOOK MILLIONS OF YEARS TO EVOLVE!

      When I became an atheist, I sought out fellow atheists but most were underground then. So, I found a community in the web peopled by atheists around the world.

      There are so many atheist academics, scientists, and what have you on YouTube. Watch and listen to the debates between believers and non-believers. Believers lose in all arguments. Face it, there is nothing up there in the sky except man-made satellites and radiation. Russian cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, the first man into space in 1961 said. “I looked and looked and looked but I did not see god.” HAHA.. :-)

      This is the sh*t. This is it – your only life. There are no merry reunions. So, love your parents, your family while they are still around. This is your only chance.

      Peace.

      Migs aka Roy The Infidel

    10. It’s about time to attack these hypocrites. They’ve been treated like kings by the Aquino’s and all the trapos. No wonder Napoles has her own entourage of priest under her payola, CBCP’s huge investments in the stock market, Monsignor mansions. These crooks hate the drug war simply because it is already affecting the donations they get from the Druglords and soon the Gambling lords.

    11. By their fruits you will know them. Sino bang nagbabalasubas sa mundo? Yun bang tulad ni Du30 na kontra relihiyon, o yung lider na may takot sa Diyos? “Fear of God” refers to a mature level of understanding of the Divine Creator’s role vis-à-vis man’s part in his development stages towards being fully human, thus a true image of God. “Fear of God is the beginning of wisdom” (Book of Wisdom). E, itong tulad ni Du30, kanino kaya siya may “takot?” Kung di sa Diyos, imposible magkaroon siya ng wisdom. God have maercy on our country!

    12. Whomever or whatever you are, I don’t agree that anyone should attack someone else’s beliefs in any way, shape or form because nobody truly knows the truth, so why push your belief (and that is all that it is at this point) on to someone else? That is the true definition of freedom, so all who are trying to convince others that you are right, are wrong.

    13. Not “religion.” Not the Roman Catholic Church. It is the priests who campaigned against the President before the elections who up to now , STILL, and STILL, do not end their tirades against him. Just what are the priests up to? Part of the group to oust the President? PDU30 isn’t banging the INC or any other religious group. Not religion. Not any particular Church.
      Inasmuch as one of us has referred to the Holy Scriptures, let me also refer to It.
      Not “religion.” Not Judaism. It was the scribes and the pharisees whom the Christ daringly confronted for their hypocrisy. Saying something, but doing something else. Filipino priests do not have “wives” of course, they cannot marry. But they keep “their women” they admit it or not. They would sire some kids. All of the parish priests assigned in our little sleepy town in the province had at least one “woman” in the locality. And horror of horrors, when one of them passed away, his “family” came crying all the way from Manila – his woman plus their 3 grown-up kids! The priest’s secret unlocked! To the astonishment and dismay of the :”local lass” who showered him temporal (and romantic) comfort and solace. My three nephews who spent high school in a seminary, in a chorus theorized, “kaya pala may hagdanan sa likuran ng kumbento.”

    14. Bottomline| Digong is not a Christian.

      He is|

      1. Immoral: has 2 women in life| legal and illegal.
      2. He lies.
      3. He mostly not keep his promises.
      4. He kills.
      5. He place the name of God in vain.
      6. He doesn’ t follow the 10 Commandments| Hence, that includes the teachings of Jesus Christ.

      Digong is probable an Atheist/ Agnostic: or even can be considered EVIL.

    15. Lord Jesus’ disciples died for the claim that Jesus existed and risen.
      Man would be willing to die if he know what he believes is true even if it is false, but it is difficult to die for a belief that you know is not true.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        Going by that logic, Islam is as true as Christianity, Buddhism (self-immolations during Vietnam war), Hinduism (Tamil Tigers first used suicide bombers), Suicide bombers pa in this day and age, which I don’t think any Christian has done recently.

    16. Is it not too early to write about legacy? Wasn’t “freedom from religion” the express objective of the philosophes of the French Revolution? Didn’t they fail miserably in imposing this type of freedom? What came out instead was freedom OF religion as an offshoot of liberte, egalite, and fraternite. Freedom FROM religion is more like a wishful thinking on the part of PNP scalawags who use the “onggoying” war on drugs into a “tokhang” (took $100K from the South Korean victim’s wife and left the wife hanging). This is the egregious kind of moral aberration that sets the trajectory for an internationally shameful legacy. Hasn’t this already been done by Hitler on a massive scale? Took the Jews’ wealth and left their clothes hanging: “took-hang” countless times. Pinoys are truly the onggoys (monkeys) of the world. P***tang-ina! You need to continue hammering “nationalism” instead of hammering religion. The religion you are hammering happens to be a source of pinoy unity and fraternity; should be a foundation for nationalism and even internationalism of the good kind.

      Comparative religion readily provides you with data that can be made to look “scientific” by presenting comparisons in charts. Sad to say, the scientific method is more than just charts. It is more like zero-ing in on a well thought out hypothesis and taking all the necessary precautions to eliminate variables that might affect the scientific result. It is a tedious process that need to be presented to the scientific world for its accuracy and producibility with consistent result (not results). Religion founded by the Supernatural Person who took on human nature to go through the human condition should stand out in any comparative religion study. Why stand out? Nothing compares to this Person foretelling his coming for centuries; nothing compares to this Person predicting his death and resurrection. These points of comparison do not even lend themselves to scientific deetermination. Sorry, but science is really so limited in its scope. If science is your forte, then it is understandable that religion is your weakness.

    17. May punto din si Pres. Duterte. Ang Archdiocese ng Manila halos umabot sa isang billion ang investment sa malalaking corporations sa Plipinas gaya ng BPI at San Miguel Corporation. Pero bago pa man sila gumawa ng mga kawanggawa hinihingi pa muna sa mga tao instead na bawasan man lang ang investment sa stock market.Pero sila din ang nag sasabi na unahin muna ang pagbibigay o pag silbe sa Diyos at gaya ng ibon na hindi nagtatanim,nabubuhay samantala sobra ang paninigurado ng simbahan. Bago man magpatayo o magpa ayos ng kumbento o Simbahan, mangingilimos muna yon pala isang bilyon ang nakalagak na pera sa stock market.

    18. I recommend the book Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander. Alexander is a neuro-surgeon who experienced the phenomenon called Near-death experience.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        Check this out:www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2013/07/proof-heaven-author-debunked/313681/. In the US market, a best-seller could make you a millionaire overnight as Mr Alexander become

    19. Catholicism is the one that is influencing the thinking of the masses but not Christianity. I belong to the born again group and we have a different mindset. The Catholic Church used to be a powerful political and religious entity when Rome adopted it as its religion. In the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church was behind the governments of Europe. We know of the Crusades, the Inquisition and of course the Spanish and Portuguese colonization that brought Catholicism to different nations beyond Europe. The history of the Catholic Church was filled with blood on their hands. The Catholic Church has always been a political entity so it is no surprise why it still wants to be exert political pressure all over the world, especially in countries where the people still follow its teachings. However, there is nothing wrong in following Christian values as seen in the Bible and applying it to one’s daily life. It is the meddling of the Catholic Church in our politics that is the problem. In my church, if we disagree with certain policies, we discuss them among ourselves and pray for our nation. We don’t try to be part of the headlines and influence the state. We believe that the only way to change the nation is to apply Christian teachings in our lives and influence people within our sphere so that more people are more responsible, honest, compassionate, caring, trustworthy, empathetic, and forgiving among other virtues.

      • Just like these Born Again messengers taking every commuter Bus for Love Offering … They walk the talk of IKAPU. That is the Born Again Christian Way to have your pockets filled up.

      • funny… the only difference of Catholicism with other protestant religious institutions is that Catholicism in this country is stronger. that is the only reason why u have diff thinking. i certainly know born again xtians as well as baptists who also seek favor to local mayors. if u get the upper hand their will be no difference just like in the united states. see, they are built by people who opposed Catholicism but look- weren’t they the top country in the world who makes Weapons of mass destruction… plus they were obviously more brutal to the natives of the land than the catholic spaniards as evidence by the number of europians today in north america compared to south america where u can still see the natives… bu in the US and canada, new zealand and australia where are they- they’ve killed them all.

    20. why only the catholics — i myself is an agnostic .. why not include other religions; the INC, other protestant sects and most especially the muslims .. bakit specific siya sa catholics.. bakit kaya .. o dahil meek — hindi sumasagot .. hindi naman siguro

      • hindi naman nangangailam ang ibang relihiyon sa gobyerno hindi katulad ng mga pari na laging umeepal.

      • xiempre kasama na rin yun. nagkataon lang mga aring katoliko ang nakararami kaya sila natatamaan

      • @Jack Reacher – ibinoto ng INC si Duterte, hindi namin siya kinakalaban at lalong hindi kami nakekelam sa pamamalakad ng gobyerno, so bakit gusto mong idamay niya kami? Kami ba ung nagpapa press release ng paglaban sa drug war ni President? Nagpapaskel ba kami ng mga litrato ng napatay na adik sa kahit saang kapilya namin? Di ba mga pari un? Pakelam namin diyan!

    21. You could bet, Mr. Tiglao, your icon Pres Du30 would have vanished long in the annals of Phil history before, if ever, religion could have been whisked away by the storm of cynicism and religious antagonism. Russia, for all its communistic/materialistic ideals and practices, still has in its bowels firm believers in God. Same with the hegemonic China, our intensely anti-religion neighbor. There’s “something” in religion, whether Catholic, Islam, or Buddhist, that clings to a man’s soul, call a fundamental relatedness between what is deeply human (in man) and what is essentially transcendental in the universe.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        I agree. That deep something is the fear that there’s no afterlife and need for care. One neurologist wrote a book that the belief in a God is hardwired in our brains, to enable primitive man to be bold in fighting his enemies.

    22. Naaalala ko pa noon ako.y nasa high school sabi ng teacher ko bago namin basahin ang nobela ni Dr. Jose Rizal na Noli Me Tangere at El Filibusterismo kailangan maging handa kami at huwag agad paniwalaan dahil ito,y kathang isip lamang ng sumulat.Saka ko lang napagtanto matapos mabasa ang dalawang nobelang ni Dr. Rizal na totoo lahat ang nakasulat dito.

      Ang sabi ng mga pari nasusulat daw sa Bibliya na “Mapapalad ang mga mahihirap dahil nasa kanila ang kaharian ng Diyos,” kaya habang panahon dapat maghirap ka. Mapapalad ang mga inaapi dahil nasa kanila ang kaharian ng Diyos” kaya habang panahon ka na lang magpaapi.

      Kaya ngayon marami sa mga Pilipino ay patuloy na naghihirap at inaapi sa paniniwalang nasa kanila ang kaharian ng Diyos. Marami rin sa mga Pilipino ay hindi na naniniwala sa mga pari, bagama.t silay nagsisimba ito ay dahil lang sa kanilang pananampalataya sa mga Santong Rebulto na nasa loob ng simbaha sa paniniwalang ito ang makakatulong sa kanila na maka-ahon sa pag-aapi at kahirapan.

    23. Ramon Eamiguel on

      The whole world stops to celebrate Jesus’ birth and death for centuries. Are you saying then that the whole world has been brainwashed?

      You have been attacking the Catholic Church in your columns. Do you ever believe in a higher being? or you take advantage of President Duterte’so selective biases against the church to make your point.

      I am disappointed. I thought you rise above your narrow and selective view to consider how the whole world thinks about Jesus and the church.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        Probably the same number believe in Santa Claus, and 1.3 billion Muslims believe Muhamed ascended to Heaven in a fiery chariot. ALL of humanity during the Middle ages believed the Earth was flat, and the Sun revolved aroudn teh earth. So they’re right?

      • Christianity and the Catholic Church are two different things, please dont confuse them. Mr Tiglao is only pointing out in this article the many interesting facts surrounding both since their inception.

      • Ramon, do you believe in Valentine’s day? Do you think santa Claus is real? Do you think we could really find Easter egg? Or witches come out every November 1?

    24. Wanted, the Scripture quoted here from Romans 13:1-5 do not say about any killing but submission to authorities. You need to read it at least 10 times and ask God to enlighten you on His words.

      • If your religion teaches you not to question your religion, you need to get out of it. Why you think in North Korea people cannot question their leader?

    25. I disagree with the writer that Jesus is a Roman invention. How could it be? Christianity contributed to Rome’s demise. People who believe in christ find contentment in his teaching and forego their world desire. Christianity outlived the Roman empire. If Christ is truly Roman creation then it should have outlived christ. Even Christ hates priest. They are his favorite punching bag to demonstrate hypocrisy. Repudiating the hypocrite priest does not mean repudiating christ.

      • It cannot be a Roman invention since the Roman emperor Nero actually persecuted Christians by feeding then to the lions and burning them on crosses. Rome adopted Christianity when it grew to such a big number and Constantine was converted. Btw, if you read the Bible, Jesus was hitting the Pharisees. The priests there were not the Roman Catholic priests but the Jewish priests who could marry and have children. Catholic priests are forbidden to marry. Paul warned in one of his letters about those forbidding to marry although he himself said it was better to marry but during this time, Rome was not yet Catholic. Paul was beheaded. Catholicism, Protestantism etc used their interpretation of the Bible to form their groups but if one read the Bible, Christianity is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. However, some groups want to use the Bible for their own agenda. Jesus was never political if people will just read the Bible on their own. But people, especially the Catholic Church wants to use selected teachings of Jesus to push her will on the people. The Theology of Liberation was even pushed down my throat in the 80s when I studied in this left-leaning all girl college.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        Scholars dispute that account of Nero and his blaming of Christians as this was written by Tacitus in 150 AD or more than a hundred years after the event. Also, the term “christians’ was not yet in use in Nero’s time, nor were they a group of any consequence. It’s not even clear if the Christian sect existed alrady during NEro’s time.

    26. Mr. Tiglao, penny for your thought. You wrote that during the 80’s so called scholars were asking if Jesus really exist? Well according to Jewish scholars in Jesus’ time namely Josephus et al, Jesus really exist. That is why in the Apostles Creed we Catholic mentions about Pontius Pliate, to pinpoint where in history it happened. Now its up to the faithful to believe or not, if Jesus is God which He proclaimed.

      Now to ask the question if Jesus is Lord, liar or lunatic, is up to the people and the faithful?

      Jesus made the most astonishing claims, not only about God, society and ethics, but also about himself. He claimed to have the authority to forgive sins, to be the representative of all humanity come to die in order to reconcile man to God, and to be the only way for people to attain salvation.
      Faced with the fact that Jesus made these claims about himself, there are three things that we might say about him: Either Jesus’ claims were false and he knew it, or his claims were false and he didn’t know it, or his claims were true. None of these suggests that Jesus was a great, but merely human, teacher. Anyone who has that view needs to think again.
      The first thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were false and he knew it, in which case he was a liar. If Jesus did not believe that his claims about himself were true, then when he made those claims he was lying.
      Jesus’ claims about himself were so central to his teachings, though, that if they were lies then he can hardly be deemed a great teacher. If Jesus set out to systematically deceive people about who he was and how their sins were to be dealt with, then he was among the worst teachers that have ever walked the earth.
      The second thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were false and he didn’t know it, in which case he was a lunatic. If Jesus believed that his claims about himself were true, and they weren’t, then he was a delusional egomaniac. If an ordinary person believes himself to be God incarnate, then that person is, put quite simply, insane.
      Again, if this were the case, if Jesus taught that this is who he was and was mistaken, then he was as bad a teacher as there has ever been.
      The third thing that we might say about Jesus is that his claims were true, in which case he was, and is, Lord. If Jesus believed that his claims about himself were true and they were, then Jesus was not only a great human being, but was also God on Earth.
      If we take Jesus seriously, then we must take Jesus’ claims about himself seriously. We cannot say that Jesus was a great teacher whom we admire and look up to, but that the most fundamental element of his teachings was a monumental error. Jesus was not a great, but merely human, teacher; he was either much less than this, or much more.
      Those who respond to this argument by writing Jesus off as either a liar or a lunatic are, for all that has been said so far, just as reasonable as those who respond by accepting Jesus as Lord. This argument is an attack only on the view that Jesus was a great teacher but not God; there is nothing in it that counts against the view that Jesus was a terrible teacher. In order to show that it is better to view Jesus as Lord than as either a liar or a lunatic, it would have to be demonstrated that there is some reason to take Jesus’ claims seriously.
      Do we have any reason, though, to take Jesus’ claims seriously? Many have argued that we do, that we have the strongest possible evidence that Jesus knew what he was talking about when it came to the supernatural. There is, it is argued, substantial historical evidence that Jesus was raised from the dead, endorsing his claims to religious authority.
      The Resurrection, it is said, was a divine endorsement of Jesus’ teachings, God’s confirmation that Jesus’ teachings were true. If this is correct, then there can be no doubt as to which of the three positions concerning Jesus outlined above is the correct one. If there is significant evidence for the resurrection, then we have to take Jesus seriously.

      • RIGOBERTO D. TIGLAO on

        That Testimonium Flavianum is considered by most scholars as a much later insertion into Josephus’ Antiquities of the Jews by Christian monks who transcribed all of Josephus’ works into the form available to us. If you read the Antiquities’ book 18 chapter 3, paragraph 3, the part which describes Jesus, it is quite obvious that it was an abrupt insertion into the text. (Unrelated to pars 2 and 4).

    27. Well written Bobi,as the yellows would like us to believe that the rise of Cory and the fall of Marcos is an act of God.It continues after all succeeding presidents of our country.Ramos backing down like a humiliated dog on the reproductive health issue,Erap Estrada kicked out from Malacanang by their so called People Power II, Gloria Arroyo and the Noynoy daang matuwid regime continuing their filial surrender and all of us fiilpinos fearing their inquisition should they pronounced us heretics.Until Digong Duterte came along shouting at them putang ina niyo,unggoy, mga gago kayo! for everybody to hear including our young children. Where are the nuns praying the rosary on the streets of EDSA? I am amused watching Bishop Bacani answer to Duterte’s foul mouthed vindictives pareho tayong babaero dalawang asawa! magsama sama na lang tayo sa impyerno.The majority of churchgoing filipinos remain silent, because they believe their is a ring of truth on Digong’s diatribes? and they feared their priests with bad breath for not brushing their teeth forsaking them from their confessions and their way to heaven.But you are talking about the Catholic Church Mr.Tiglao who wanted to remain in power and instill fear like the spanish inquisittion among our ordinary lives. Nevertheless, that is Duterte’s legacy but I wonder what will be your neighbor Kit Tatad say about this.

    28. ha ha ha ha. fake news / alternative facts were being created by the catholic church centuries before the term became popular!!! but the cruel thing is that the church is doing everything to perpetuate their power, regardless of who gets hurt, regardless of the truth.

      you’re right, the president will have left an important legacy. he can do more, a lot more. for instance, he can ask congress to remove the tax free status of the church. the amount the government is losing on real estate taxes alone can be used to reduce the poverty rate in the country significantly.

      let’s hope that the people will wake up to the truth. it is going to be very tough indeed, especially since the catholic church practically owns all of the private schools in the country and, through them, persistently brain wash the next generation.

    29. It is the relentless meddling in politics that has rendered the Church vulnerable to attacks on its integrity. By taking up sides in politics and stirring up passions in the process they have only succeeded in alienating a large portion of their own flock. They probably don’t realize it but they have a very serious credibility problem. The western Civilization- formerly known as the Western Christendom- is in a decline as can be seen from what is happening to Europe and America. It should therefore not be a surprise that its spiritual vanguard is in a decline as well. God is Great !

    30. An open message : To all priests in the whole world , kindly read the following :

      Psalms 82:1-5 (ESV)
      Rescue the Weak and Needy
      A Psalm of Asaph.
      ​1 God has taken his place in the divine council;
      in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
      2 “How long will you judge unjustly
      and show partiality to the wicked? Selah
      3 Give justice to the weak and the fatherless;
      maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.
      4 Rescue the weak and the needy;
      deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”
      5 They have neither knowledge nor understanding,
      they walk about in darkness;
      all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

      If you are truly the servants of The Lord , why show partiality to the wicked ? Why show love and affection to heinous criminals? Who are you serving , the God who is the good one , or Satan who is the evil one?
      You should understand that heinous criminals , such as the drug lords , as well as their protectors certainly do not serve the good one , rather they are servants of the evil one.

      You are so interested in the lives of these lawless criminals. You want to show that you are the servants of the evil one because of your being partial to lawless criminals.
      Do you want to be “martyrs of evil” by taking side with those lawless animals who seemed to have lost their human reason as they come out doing evil deeds with impunity?
      What would be your reply to The Lord , you priests of the old church?

      “HOW LONG WILL YOU JUDGE UNJUSTLY , AND SHOW PARTIALITY TO THE WICKED?”

      Is not The Lord you professed to be serving is the FOREMOST EVIL TERMINATOR ? So why go against The Lord and show partiality to wicked criminals ? Do you not feel ashamed of what you are doing?

      You go against the leader because he terminates those evil ones who are destroying our society. But in so doing you become as evil protectors , defying the God who is the hater of all evil!
      Notwithstanding you still want to be martyrs for evil!
      Bear this in your most inept minds , whether you like it or not , Duterte , the most-hated man by all criminals and the criminally-minded—is the one appointed to terrorized the evil ones.

      It is better for you to be equipped with the correct knowledge , read the following for your ramification:
      Romans 13:1-5 (ESV)
      Submission to the Authorities
      ​1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.
      2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.
      3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,
      4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.
      5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience.

      Can you comprehend Wisdom ?

      • R.Ancheta, please do not quote the Holy Scriptures if you want to point out your agreement with DU30’s killing spree. You can also quote there that killing someone is OK, so you have to be careful.

      • I take off my hat, Sir. I hope the readers from the other prints will find this section. I hope they will start to ask questions. What is the truth? What is good? Are we being deceived? Who are the clerics to be trusted?

      • Mr. WANTED, R.Ancheta is citing a Scripture of not his own making but publicly read books, so its up for the reader to discern. What is wrong, in fact, is wrong is your indiscriminate attribution of killing in the legitimate war on illegal drugs as Du30’s killing spree, which is obviously, unfair. If that is how you understand then include all those killed in car accident, killed by diseases, killed by old age, killed by any other means. Remember Du30 never interfere on investigations and court proceedings, but he support his men innocent until proven otherwise. You are wrong Mr. wanted, DU30 has not violated the rule of law or the Constitution.