Religious Stupidity, Sins and Salvation

Published on Sept. 13th, 2018, on the Facebook of “The Traffick” (a popular WebSeries written, directed, produced and often acted in by Celik Kayalar).

Pope Francis has called a meeting of Catholic bishops to address sexual abuse of children by priests (News headline around the world: Sept 12th, 2018)

I’d say, not a minute too soon.

Religion can easily lead to stupidity and much worse. Mainly because it’s not based on scientific evidence and rational thinking. It’s based on so-called “Revealed Knowledge” which does not really exist.

This is not to deny the comforting, anxiety-relieving function of religion, giving additional meaning and purpose to the lives of the believers. This is probably the main reason why religions are still around in the 21st century.

The teachings of the church, any church, can quickly become dogma. The church-fathers, most often the inventors and propagators of the dogma, now have a vested interest to keep the dogma immune from criticism and keep it going as it is.
Contrast this to scientific-knowledge which is constantly critiqued, experimentally tested, re-evaluated, updated and improved by the scientist themselves.

Sins of the Catholic Church, the most heinous being the sexual abuse of children (as practiced by pedophile priests) could have been avoided to a large extent throughout history. How?

Scientific evidence (and, simple human observation and experience) shows that sexual-desire is a natural instinct of the humans (and higher animals too, as humans evolved from them, a fact denied by the Church, to begin with). It’s the sexual activity that allows all animals including humans to propagate and not go extinct.

Therefore, if this natural desire (instinct), is not allowed to be expressed in a healthy way (as in sex between consenting adults), it could find it’s expression in very ugly and harmful ways instead, as in pedophilia.

Today Catholic Church insists on it’s priests to practice CELIBACY for life. However “The Church was a thousand years old before it definitively took a stand in favor of celibacy in the twelfth century at the Second Lateran Council held in 1139, when a rule was approved forbidding priests to marry. In 1563, the Council of Trent reaffirmed the tradition of celibacy” (Helen L.Owenat

Here’s my MEMO to the good Pope and his bishops who’ll meet soon:

Why not allow the Catholic priests to get married and have sex with their wives, instead of asking them to be celibate for life?
While you’re at it, why don’t you allow women into the priesthood in equal terms to men, as well?
Why not remove all gender-based discrimination all together and allow people of all sexual orientations into your church (gays, lesbians, transgenders), and let them marry too, as consenting adults, free to choose who they want to love and commit to in their “holly matrimony”?
Wouldn’t this make the composition of your church and priesthood more reflective of the real society we live in, therefore more representative and vastly better?

On the issue of protecting children from sexual abuse by the priests, the removal of the “Celibacy” requirement would alone be an excellent step forward in combatting pedophilia within the Catholic church. Speaking of SALVATION….

May peace be upon us all.
Celik Kayalar, PhD.
Former faculty at UC Berkeley and UCLA in chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology.
Writer, director & producer of the narrative WebSeries “The Traffick” aimed at raising awareness and therefore helping fight the heinous crime of child sex-trafficking worldwide.