There is no record that Jesus ever laughed.
In old times a culprit, when at the gallows, was allowed to select a Psalm, which was then sung, thereby lengthening the chances of the arrival of a reprieve. It is reported of one of the chaplains to the famous Montrose, that being condemned in Scotland to die for attending his master in some of his exploits, he selected the 119th Psalm. It was well for him that he did so, for they had sung it half through before the reprieve came. A shorter Psalm, and he would have been hung.
— Frank H. Stauffer, The Queer, the Quaint and the Quizzical, 1882
Thomas Jefferson once composed a secular version of the Christian Gospels. He said he wanted to study Jesus’ teachings without “the artificial vestments in which they have been muffled by priests, who have travestied them into various forms, as instruments of riches and power to themselves.”
He called the Bible’s supernatural content “nonsense,” from which Jesus’ ideas were “as easily distinguishable as diamonds in a dunghill.” His narrative ends like this:
“Now, in the place where he was crucified, there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid. There laid they Jesus. And rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.”
Teleportation in the Bible:
And he commanded the chariot to stand still [in Gaza]: and they went down both into the water, both Philip [the Evangelist] and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.
(From Acts 8:38-40.)
Here are the first three verses of Genesis:
1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
Pick any word in the first verse, count its letters, and move ahead by the corresponding number of words. For example, if you start at beginning, you’d count 9 letters and move ahead 9 words, landing on the in the second verse. Count that word’s letters and continue in this manner until you’ve entered the third verse.
You’ll always arrive at God.
(Discovered by Martin Gardner.)
A man’s likelihood of being gay increases by 33 percent for each older brother he has.
Notable authors on the Vatican’s list of prohibited books:
- Francis Bacon
- Honoré de Balzac
- Giordano Bruno
- Nicolaus Copernicus
- Daniel Defoe
- René Descartes
- Denis Diderot
- Desiderius Erasmus
- Gustave Flaubert
- Galileo Galilei
- Edward Gibbon
- Thomas Hobbes
- Victor Hugo
- David Hume
- Immanuel Kant
- John Locke
- John Stuart Mill
- John Milton
- Blaise Pascal
- Jean-Jacques Rousseau
- Jean-Paul Sartre
- Jonathan Swift
- Émile Zola
George Bernard Shaw said, “Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads.”
DEIFIED is a palindrome.
Rome’s Capuchin Crypt contains the remains of more than 4,000 monks who died between 1528 and 1870, including several intact skeletons wearing Franciscan habits.
Reportedly it inspired the Sedlec Ossuary.
That hollow column on the right is a “priest-hole,” a hiding place for Catholic priests, who were hunted with Elmer-Fudd-like tenacity when Elizabeth took the English throne around 1560. A “papist” could be hanged for saying mass; converting a Protestant was high treason.
Fortunately, the priests had a Bugs Bunny in the shape of Nicholas Owen, a Jesuit laybrother who spent his life devising secret chambers and hiding places for persecuted Catholics. “Pursuivants” could spend as much as a fortnight fruitlessly tearing down paneling and tearing up floors while the priest held his breath a wall’s thickness away.
Ickily, some of these hidden priests starved to death.