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Food - Red_Dragon - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:54pm
 
Palestine - kurtster - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:46pm
 
Name My Band - islander - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:25pm
 
Baseball, anyone? - buzz - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:11pm
 
What Did You Do Today? - triskele - Aug 21, 2014 - 5:02pm
 
Gay Marriage v. Civil Unions: an Intelligent Discussion - miamizsun - Aug 21, 2014 - 3:38pm
 
Last gas price paid? - ScottN - Aug 21, 2014 - 2:40pm
 
Questions. - buzz - Aug 21, 2014 - 1:44pm
 
My City - Antigone - Aug 21, 2014 - 1:21pm
 
songs that ROCK! - Sean-E-Sean - Aug 21, 2014 - 12:54pm
 
What are you listening to now? - Sean-E-Sean - Aug 21, 2014 - 12:47pm
 
Tech & Science - RichardPrins - Aug 21, 2014 - 12:30pm
 
Those Lovable Policemen - sirdroseph - Aug 21, 2014 - 12:21pm
 
Counting with Pictures - ZM_Herb - Aug 21, 2014 - 11:24am
 
Economix - kurtster - Aug 21, 2014 - 11:05am
 
The Global War on Terror - RichardPrins - Aug 21, 2014 - 10:12am
 
What Are You Grateful For? - helenofjoy - Aug 21, 2014 - 10:09am
 
Guns - sirdroseph - Aug 21, 2014 - 9:52am
 
What Makes You Laugh? - Red_Dragon - Aug 21, 2014 - 9:49am
 
Upcoming concerts or shows you can't wait to see - marko86 - Aug 21, 2014 - 9:28am
 
Celebrity Deaths - sirdroseph - Aug 21, 2014 - 8:45am
 
Radio Paradise Comments - Coaxial - Aug 21, 2014 - 7:51am
 
Post a photo of yourself as a kid - Red_Dragon - Aug 21, 2014 - 7:24am
 
Cryptic Posts - Leave Them Guessing - oldviolin - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:50am
 
Positive Thoughts and Prayer Requests - Coaxial - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:31am
 
Having PSD problems? - MassivRuss - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:28am
 
Memorials - Remembering Our Loved Ones - Alexandra - Aug 21, 2014 - 6:11am
 
Today in History - Red_Dragon - Aug 21, 2014 - 5:50am
 
How's the weather? - bokey - Aug 21, 2014 - 5:49am
 
Celebrity Face Recognition - DaveInVA - Aug 21, 2014 - 5:46am
 
~*Funny Cats*~ - sirdroseph - Aug 21, 2014 - 5:25am
 
Favourite Movie Scene - lostintokyo - Aug 21, 2014 - 3:01am
 
What did you have for dinner? - Sean-E-Sean - Aug 21, 2014 - 1:54am
 
Types of Trolls - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 8:22pm
 
Photos you have taken of your walks or hikes. - ScottFromWyoming - Aug 20, 2014 - 7:25pm
 
The Chomsky / Zinn Reader - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 7:11pm
 
YouTube: Music-Videos - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 6:16pm
 
Squirrels Just Want To Have Fun! - JrzyTmata - Aug 20, 2014 - 4:59pm
 
The Dragon's Roots - haresfur - Aug 20, 2014 - 4:38pm
 
Favorite Quotes - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 4:10pm
 
Things that piss me off - DaveInVA - Aug 20, 2014 - 3:28pm
 
Australian and New Zealand Music - NoEnzLefttoSplit - Aug 20, 2014 - 3:08pm
 
• • • What Makes You Happy? • • •  - helenofjoy - Aug 20, 2014 - 2:11pm
 
Dancing Bananas !!! - Proclivities - Aug 20, 2014 - 1:25pm
 
Cute Dog Video - ScottN - Aug 20, 2014 - 12:33pm
 
Oklahoma Questions and Points of Interest - ScottN - Aug 20, 2014 - 12:14pm
 
Important if you have small children - Proclivities - Aug 20, 2014 - 12:04pm
 
More cuteness - lily34 - Aug 20, 2014 - 12:01pm
 
Graphic designers, ho's! - Proclivities - Aug 20, 2014 - 11:41am
 
Occupy Together... - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 11:40am
 
Climate Change - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 11:34am
 
Facebook Tips - lily34 - Aug 20, 2014 - 11:03am
 
Saudi-Arabia - RichardPrins - Aug 20, 2014 - 10:16am
 
Annoying stuff. not things that piss you off, just annoyi... - DaveInVA - Aug 20, 2014 - 10:04am
 
What Makes You Sad? - DaveInVA - Aug 20, 2014 - 9:57am
 
What are you doing RIGHT NOW? - Coaxial - Aug 20, 2014 - 9:50am
 
ScottFromWyoming - Red_Dragon - Aug 20, 2014 - 9:23am
 
Make Meowie shoot milk out her nose - meower - Aug 20, 2014 - 9:14am
 
Cool Stuff I Really Want - sirdroseph - Aug 20, 2014 - 8:47am
 
Poetry Forum - Antigone - Aug 20, 2014 - 7:36am
 
Flower Pictures - Antigone - Aug 20, 2014 - 5:28am
 
What makes you smile? - Antigone - Aug 20, 2014 - 5:27am
 
Mixtape Culture Club - sirdroseph - Aug 20, 2014 - 4:06am
 
What do you use to make Radio Paradise portable? - miamizsun - Aug 20, 2014 - 3:49am
 
Israel - RichardPrins - Aug 19, 2014 - 10:40pm
 
OUR CATS!! - Alexandra - Aug 19, 2014 - 9:37pm
 
Photography Forum - Your Own Photos; Please Limit to 510 ... - Coaxial - Aug 19, 2014 - 9:37pm
 
how do you feel right now? - haresfur - Aug 19, 2014 - 5:55pm
 
Favorite Lyrics Thread - Alexandra - Aug 19, 2014 - 3:09pm
 
Tomato Gardens - Coaxial - Aug 19, 2014 - 3:02pm
 
Things You Thought Today - Alexandra - Aug 19, 2014 - 2:13pm
 
Bug Reports & Feature Requests - BillG - Aug 19, 2014 - 2:03pm
 
The House I Want (Today) - cc_rider - Aug 19, 2014 - 1:32pm
 
Walmartopia - miamizsun - Aug 19, 2014 - 12:56pm
 
The Speaker Question - sirdroseph - Aug 19, 2014 - 9:04am
 
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Posted: Aug 6, 2014 - 5:03pm


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Posted: Jul 28, 2014 - 5:00pm

Satanic Temple seeks Hobby Lobby-style exemption from anti-abortion laws
If Christian business owners cannot be compelled to violate their faith, why should the same protection not apply to Satanists? That's the argument the Satanic Temple is making to claim that, in the wake of the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling, women who share their beliefs should not be forced to follow some of the more restrictive state-level abortion laws to crop up in recent years.

Specifically, the Satanic Temple wants women to be exempt from having to view legally mandated "informational" materials — which it calls "biased" and "medically invalid" — prior to having an abortion. Dozens of states require women to attend counseling before receiving an abortion, while 10 mandate that they receive written materials before undergoing the procedure, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

"While we feel we have a strong case for an exemption regardless of the Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court has decided that religious beliefs are so sacrosanct that they can even trump scientific fact," a spokesperson for the group said in a press release. 

The Satanic Temple added that all women who share their belief that the "body is inviolable subject to one's own will alone" — and not merely temple members — should be free to claim the exemption.

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Posted: Jul 22, 2014 - 5:43pm

 haresfur wrote:
Now he's let the cat out of the bag.  We need to convert them first, get them to tithe, then let them know the bad news.
 
Yes, those Ham-fisted fundies could learn a thing or thousand from the Catholics. They understand the biz. {#Mrgreen}
Pope Francis has said that he would be willing to baptise aliens if they came to the Vatican, asking “who are we to close doors” to anyone - even Martians. (...)

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Posted: Jul 22, 2014 - 3:58pm

 RichardPrins wrote:
Creationist Ken Ham Says Aliens Will Go To Hell So Let's Stop Looking For Them
Creationist Ken Ham, who recently debated Bill Nye the Science Guy over the origins of the universe, is calling for an end to the search for extraterrestrial life because aliens probably don't exist — and if they do, they're going to Hell anyway.

"You see, the Bible makes it clear that Adam’s sin affected the whole universe," Ham wrote on his blog on Sunday. "This means that any aliens would also be affected by Adam’s sin, but because they are not Adam’s descendants, they can’t have salvation."

The post was driven in part by NASA experts saying that they expect to find evidence of alien life within the next 20 years. (...)
Send the saved money to me instead, so I can build an ark...

 
Now he's let the cat out of the bag.  We need to convert them first, get them to tithe, then let them know the bad news.
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Posted: Jul 22, 2014 - 1:33pm

Creationist Ken Ham Says Aliens Will Go To Hell So Let's Stop Looking For Them
Creationist Ken Ham, who recently debated Bill Nye the Science Guy over the origins of the universe, is calling for an end to the search for extraterrestrial life because aliens probably don't exist — and if they do, they're going to Hell anyway.

"You see, the Bible makes it clear that Adam’s sin affected the whole universe," Ham wrote on his blog on Sunday. "This means that any aliens would also be affected by Adam’s sin, but because they are not Adam’s descendants, they can’t have salvation."

The post was driven in part by NASA experts saying that they expect to find evidence of alien life within the next 20 years. (...)
Send the saved money to me instead, so I can build an ark...
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Posted: Jul 8, 2014 - 5:45pm

In general, Muslims, pagans, and atheists suffered the highest levels of discriminatory treatment from employers, a fictitious religious group and Catholics experienced moderate levels, evangelical Christians encountered little, and Jews received no discernible discrimination.

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Posted: Jun 29, 2014 - 12:14pm

The Great Secession
Faced with sweeping social change, conservative Christians are walling themselves off from secular society. But when religion isolates itself, both sides lose.

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Posted: Jun 22, 2014 - 2:00pm

How We Know the Bible Was Written by Human(s) Hand #books
Three Scholars Face Truth Of Biblical History

According to a Gallup poll taken last month, 40% of Americans believe that the Bible is the literal record of words spoken by God. A new crop of books from Yale University Press shows why this belief is illogical and incoherent.

All three cover ground that is largely familiar to scholars of religion, but still has the capacity to shock traditionalists. Far from being a unified set of texts, the Bible is the product of multiple hands, contradictory agendas, and a gradual process of codification that proceeded according to the prevailing political agendas of the times. Indeed, the boundaries of biblical literature were themselves contested over an extended period of time, settling only in the first centuries of the common era.

This is true even of the Torah itself, which scholars have long understood to be a redaction of multiple texts, threaded together from different traditions. This view, known as the “documentary hypothesis,” has been remarkably successful over its 150-year lifespan. Joel Baden’s 2012 volume, “The Composition of the Pentateuch,” surveys the history of the documentary hypothesis, observing that subsequent scholarship has provided better evidence for the hypothesis than did the original theorists.

Baden emphasizes that this hypothesis is, first and foremost, a literary solution to a literary problem. Traditionalists sometimes treat it as a religious point of view — a matter of opinion, much like some fundamentalists regard the theory of evolution. But neither evolution nor the documentary hypothesis is a “point of view.” They both try to explain otherwise perplexing evidence.

In the case of the Pentateuch, Baden thoroughly summarizes the “problem”: The text as we have it is rife with factual and doctrinal contradictions, repetitions, omissions and errors. Some are well known, such as the two versions of the Ten Commandments, and the stitched-together narrative of Joseph being sold into slavery, which makes no sense as a single narrative. Others only reveal themselves upon close inspection. (...)

To err is human...
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Posted: Jun 19, 2014 - 6:51pm


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Posted: Jun 18, 2014 - 3:13pm

Nearly half of all Americans do not want their family members marrying atheists

(...) A recent Pew Research survey titled "Political Polarization in the American Public" attempted to gauge "how increasing ideological uniformity and partisan antipathy affect politics, compromise and everyday life." Among other things, it found that this polarization between political beliefs influences everything from where you live and who you call friends to who you welcome into your family – and that this ideological divide is at its greatest point than any other time in the past two decades.

The survey also found that partisan antipathy has been on the rise. Between 1994 and 2014, the percentage of Democrats who viewed the Republican Party unfavorably jumped from 16 to 38 percent; on the other side, Republicans unfavorable views on the Democratic Party jumped from 17 percent to 43 percent.

Despite that, animosity amongst differences in beliefs on a personal level aren't nearly as severe. Nine percent of people said they would be unhappy if a family member were to marry a Republican, and 8 percent said the same about a family member marrying a Democrat.

The numbers jumped drastically when it came to marrying atheists. A stunning 49 percent of Americans said they would be unhappy if an immediate family member married someone who didn't believe in God. This included 73 percent of consistent conservatives, but also 24 percent of consistent liberals. This made atheists the least popular group to marry out of the entire survey by quite a large margin, and showing results even more polarizing than gun ownership and college education. (...)


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Posted: Jun 7, 2014 - 1:31pm

The Real Origins of the Religious Right
They’ll tell you it was abortion. Sorry, the historical record’s clear: It was segregation.
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Posted: Jun 6, 2014 - 11:55am


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Posted: May 23, 2014 - 3:04pm

Virginia county board says no followers of ‘pre-Christian deities’ allowed to deliver prayers

County officials in Virginia have apparently violated the constitution by designating which religious leaders can deliver prayers before public meetings, according to the state’s American Civil Liberties Union.

The ACLU sent a letter Thursday to the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors, which had limited opening prayers to ordained leaders of monotheistic religions.

“The First Amendment requires governing bodies to allow everyone the chance to deliver prayers before official meetings,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “If they don’t, then what they’re doing is unconstitutional.”

A state appeals court upheld the county’s policy in a 2005 ruling, and the board has invited local clergy whose names are drawn from an official county list.

Almost all of those religious leaders have represented Christian denominations, and the county has denied a Wiccan’s request to be added to the list.

Officials defended that decision, saying the “neo-pagan” faith does not fall within the Judeo-Christian tradition and “invokes polytheistic, pre-Christian deities.”

That claim led to a lawsuit by Americans United and the ACLU, but the groups say the board continues to exclude even some monotheistic faiths, such as the county’s Sikh congregation.

A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision permits local municipalities to open meetings with Christian prayer, but the civil liberties groups want to clarify that the ruling does not permit exclusion of non-Christian faiths.

“Since most of the invited clergy (in that case) were Christian, most of the prayers were Christian, as well,” the letter states. “The Court found that this was not by design; rather, ‘he town at no point excluded or denied an opportunity to a would-be prayer giver. Its leaders maintained that a minister or layperson of any persuasion, including an atheist, could give the invocation.’”

The letter also said the requirement that religious leaders be ordained is problematic, because some religions do not require ordination – and some “do not have clergy at all.”


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Posted: May 22, 2014 - 5:24pm

The Myth of a 'War on Religion'
A recent study found liberals were more likely to fib about attending services—showing there's still a greater stigma against atheism than belief.
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Posted: May 20, 2014 - 1:36pm

Christian College Faces Uproar After Bolstering Its View on Evolution - NYTimes.com

(...) Since its founding in 1930, Bryan College’s statement of belief, which professors have to sign as part of their employment contracts, included a 41-word section summing up the institution’s conservative views on creation and evolution, including the statement: “The origin of man was by fiat of God.” But in February, college officials decided that professors had to agree to an additional clarification declaring that Adam and Eve “are historical persons created by God in a special formative act, and not from previously existing life-forms.”

For administrators and many members of the governing board at Bryan, the new language is a buffer against what they see as a marked erosion of Christian values and beliefs across the country. But for critics, the clarification amounts to an assault on personal religious views, as well as on the college’s history and sense of community.

“It makes Bryan a different place,” said Allison Baker, who graduated this month and was the vice president of the student government, which raised questions about the swift enactment of the clarification. “I would argue it makes it a more narrow place.”

The consequences so far have been stark at a college where about one-quarter of incoming students were home-schooled and whose graduates routinely earn spots in graduate programs at secular institutions. Two longtime faculty members this month sued the college, arguing that the Board of Trustees was powerless under the college’s charter to change the statement of belief. Brian Eisenback, a biology professor and a Bryan graduate whose parents met on campus, decided to move to another Christian college.

Faculty members passed a no-confidence vote on Bryan’s President, Stephen D. Livesay, and hundreds of students on a campus with an enrollment of 700 petitioned trustees in opposition to the plan before the academic year ended this month.

Dr. Livesay said the clarification was intended to reaffirm, not alter, the institution’s traditional position. He said concerns had been building for years that some employees had perhaps moved “away from the historical and current position of the college.” (...)


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Posted: May 18, 2014 - 12:00pm

Americans Claim to Attend Church Much More Than They Do - NYTimes.com

The United States has long been unusually religious for an affluent, industrialized Western nation — in survey after survey, Americans report relatively high levels of belief in God, affiliation with religious institutions and participation in worship services.

But counting churchgoers has always been a bit tricky. Some congregations tend to over-report attendance, seeking to demonstrate vitality. Others are more scrupulous, especially in denominations where churches pay assessments based on size. And it’s been evident for years that Americans tend to overstate their own religiosity: There is a persistent gap between the number of people who claim to go to worship services and the number who can actually be counted in pews.

The gap grows more striking as America becomes more secular. In recent years, poll after poll has found more Americans who do not identify with a religious tradition, and many denominations show evidence of decline. And yet, Americans continue to report high levels of belief and participation — more than 90 percent of Americans say they believe in God or a universal spirit, and nearly 40 percent report weekly attendance at a worship service, numbers that have remained relatively unchanged for decades.

What’s going on? A new study, released Saturday, suggests that the gradual secularization of the nation has not eliminated the perceived social desirability of going to church, and the result is that Americans exaggerate their religious behavior. That exaggeration is more pronounced among some groups — Catholics, mainline Protestants and, strikingly, the unaffiliated, meaning that even people willing to say they don’t belong to a religious tradition still feel compelled to exaggerate their attendance at worship services. (...)


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Posted: May 15, 2014 - 2:44pm

 Red_Dragon wrote:

It's refreshing to see that Oklahoma doesn't have a monopoly on idiots.

 
Every village has one... {#Wink}
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Posted: May 15, 2014 - 2:44pm

 RichardPrins wrote: 
It's refreshing to see that Oklahoma doesn't have a monopoly on idiots.
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Posted: May 15, 2014 - 2:28pm

Loony rightwinger wants to criminalize homosexuality and adultery; ban rock music

 
We’re living in strange days when every nutjob, krank and bigot thinks it a great idea to run for public off and air their poisonous views. Worse still is when these people believe they are sanctioned by some personal religious faith or aggrieved political agenda. Have our educational systems failed so badly that people grow-up to have nothing between their ears but inherited hatreds and delusional superstitions?

The latest political wannabe that fits the profile is Susan-Anne White, who is standing as an Independent candidate in the council elections for Fermanagh and Omagh district of Northern Ireland. At first, she may seem innocent enough, until you read some of the horrendous shite coming out of her mouth.

Ms. White co-writes a blog “The Truth Shall Set You Free” (really?) with Francis White (most likely her husband?) which they describe as follows:

In a Politically Correct society, the first casualty is truth. The media in its various forms are willing accomplices in the suppression of the truth. This blog represents the great Christian fight-back. Our targets will be Marxism/socialism, which has spawned Feminism, P.C., the green agenda, the ugliness and vulgarity that masquerades as “art”, and the moral collapse of society. We will not ignore politics either, nor the dangerous equality agenda, nor yet multiculturalism.

As Bible-believing Christians, we will also turn our attention to the tragic compromise and downgrade of so many once-sound fundamentalist, Evangelical churches.

It is our intention to cast the salt of the Word of God into the corrupt fountains all around.

Susan-Anne and Francis White.

(I’d include the link, but don’t want to give these people too much free publicity…)

White’s salt-casting election manifesto is based on ten “principles” drawn up by Norwich-based Dr. Alan Clifford (this man’s a doctor?), whose previous anti-gay and anti-Islam rants and pamphlets led to him being investigated by the police. White wants homosexuality criminalized, adultery criminalized and rock groups banned.

Speaking to The Belfast Telegraph, White said:

“I don’t consider myself extreme at all…”

Few extremists do, deary. White he claims she has had positive feedback from voters.

She explained her views on gay people:

“I would – if I had the power – make homosexuality a criminal offence once again. I would also make adultery a criminal offence, so I’m pretty fair in that respect. I think adultery is a terrible sin. Society has fallen to such a low level that most people wouldn’t even bat an eyelid at two men or two women walking hand in hand in the street…

“We believe that we need to be safe from the destructive homosexual agenda…. It (being gay) is portrayed as an alternative lifestyle and they are seeking to normalise it, and it’s being forced on society. It is saturation coverage of the gay agenda and their various demands.”

It’s not just gays and adulterers who would receive the first stone, the “vulgarity” of rock music and even modern poetry are condemned by Susan-Anne White’s tiny mind.

“One only has to think of some of those well-known rock groups from the 1970s and 1980s such as Iron Maiden, Alice Cooper and more recently Kurt Cobain,” she added. “The lyrics are promoting immorality, the noise is deafening, and they also promote anarchy.”

But surely poetry is good for the soul? Apparently not, according to Susan-Anne White:

“Society has been so desensitised to vulgarity and a lack of God-given talent that these people are thought of as great artists and entertainers when they are nothing of the kind,” she continued.

Ms. White might seem to be in need of urgent psychiatric attention, but no, she’s only warming-up, as she explained her concerns over the “Islamification” of Northern Ireland.

“The Islam threat is in the form of halal meat,” she added. “Some Muslims have said that they plan to conquer the world through halal meat, so if you’re asking me is Islam a threat in Co Tyrone, then yes, it is.”

Of course, the big question was kept till the end, when reporter Adrian Rutherford asked White if she seriously believed she would get elected?

“I think the likelihood is slim but I consider it a privilege to be able to highlight these matters door to door.”

Ms. White plans to form her own party, SAFE (Society And Family Enterprise party), which will be based on Dr. Clifford’s principles.

Below, a crank call gets made to Dr. Alan Clifford…


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Posted: May 6, 2014 - 11:34am

 RichardPrins wrote:
Blessed Becomes a Popular Hashtag on Social Media - NYTimes.com

(...) God has, in fact, recently blessed my network with dazzling job promotions, coveted speaking gigs, the most wonderful fiancés ever, front row seats at Fashion Week, and nominations for many a “30 under 30” list. And, blessings aren’t limited to the little people, either. S(he) blessed Macklemore with a wardrobe designer (thanks for the heads up, Instagram!) and Jamie Lynn Spears with an engagement ring (“#blessed #blessed #blessed!” she wrote on Twitter). S(he)’s been known to bless Kanye West and Kim Kardashian with exotic getaways and expensive bottles of Champagne, overlooking sunsets of biblical proportion (naturally).

“There’s literally a chick in my Facebook feed right now who just posted a booty shot of herself — and all it says is ‘blessed,’ ” said Erin Jackson, a stand-up comedian in Virginia. “Now wait. Is that really a blessing?”

There’s nothing quite like invoking holiness as a way to brag about your life. But calling something “blessed” has become the go-to term for those who want to boast about an accomplishment while pretending to be humble, fish for a compliment, acknowledge a success (without sounding too conceited), or purposely elicit envy. Blessed, “divine or supremely favored,” is now used to explain that coveted Ted talk invite as well as to celebrate your grandmother’s 91st birthday. It is carried out in hashtags (#blessed), acronyms (#BH, for the Hebrew “baruch hasem,” which means “blessed be God”), and even, God forbid, emoji.

“ ‘Blessed’ is used now where in the past one might have said ‘lucky,’ ” said the linguist Deborah Tannen. “But what makes these examples humble-brags is not ‘blessed’ itself but the context: telling the world your fiancé is the best or that you’ve been invited to do something impressive. Actually I don’t even see the ‘humble’ in it. I just see ‘brag.’ ”

Athletes and entertainers have long used “blessed” in earnest, explained the linguist Ben Zimmer. In 1977, Smokey Robinson told The Chicago Tribune that he felt “blessed” to have accomplished so much in his career; the track star Jackie Joyner-Kersee called it a “blessing” when she set a world record in the heptathlon. (...)



 
I am really sick of people using this term.  It has been happening around here for several years.
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