left biblioblography: RESURRECTION INSURRECTION

Saturday, April 15, 2006

RESURRECTION INSURRECTION

Today is Bunny Day, AKA Easter Sunday.

For interested readers, the definition of Easter is here

So let's deflate our respective senses of wonder, and take a good, hard look at the Resurrection Myth.

It's a central tenet of Christianity. If you don't believe in it, you're either,

A. A pagan
B. An atheist
C. A Gnostic,
D. Supply your choice of noun here.

While resurrection myths abound in most folklore, from Osiris to Hercules, the xtian version is quite different, inasmuch as all human beings are promised a physical reunion with their spiritual bodies.

I'll give that an eight, it's got a good beat, but I can't dance to it.

In the words of the Great Agnostic:

"Does anybody believe that, who has the courage to think for himself? Here is a man, for instance, that weighs 200 pounds and gets sick and dies weighing 120; how much will he weigh in the morning of the resurrection? Here is a cannibal, who eats another man; and we know that the atoms you eat go into your body and become a part of you. After the cannibal has eaten the missionary, and appropriated his atoms to himself, he then dies, to whom will the atoms belong in the morning of the resurrection? Could the missionary maintain an action of replevin, and if so, what would the cannibal do for a body? It has been demonstrated, in so far as logic can demonstrate anything, that there is no creation and no destruction in Nature. It has been demonstrated, again and again, that the atoms in us have been in millions of other beings; have grown in the forests and in the grass, have blossomed in flowers, and been in the metals. In other words, there are atoms in each one of us that have been in millions of others; and when we die, these atoms return to the earth, again appear in grass and trees, are again eaten by animals, and again devoured by countless vegetable mouths and turned into wood; and yet this church, in the nineteenth century, in a council composed of and presided over by professors and presidents of colleges and theologians, solemnly tells us that it believes in the literal resurrection of the body. This is almost enough to make one despair of the future--almost enough to convince a man of the immortality of the absurd. They know better. There is not one so ignorant but knows better."
- Ingersoll, Orthodoxy

I for one would love to believe in life after death, become a hereafterian. But alas, all facts point elsewhere.Or, in the words of John Adams: "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclination, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence. "

We have accounts two millennia old. Accounts which differ, not in the matter of minutiae, such as whether the weather was inclement or not, or what variety of sandal fashion was in vogue, but varying widely in crucial, key points in each 'testimony'. The most ridiculous of which, is that fumbling, bumbling incompetent Matthew (if that was his name, in lieu of no signed original document), who made much of the fact that, in Matthew 27:50

50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.
51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

Which I find most...amusing. Because
A. The graves were opened and the saints resurrected at the 'death', but
B. They had to wait until the three day cycle was at an end.

"Hey guys? We're a, ahem, alittle ahead of schedule here. Is it okay if you all just wait a couple of more days until the Big Guy comes back? You can? Cool!"

And who were these fellows? These others that arose from the dead? Only one apostle mentions this, of the three. No names, no witnesses, obviously an apocryphal story which should be discarded.

And no outside corroboration whatsoever. This is all OVER the place in the beloved 'gospels'. In this instance, it's not mentioned in Mark, or John, or even Luke (who was supposed to be a 'superlative' historian ).

As should all of it. The resurrection concept reeks of syncretism. Dionysius, Osiris, Hercules, Adonis, Tammuz: the list does go on, into the dim recesses of history.

The saddest part of the story is not that it was told: it's a hell of a story. The saddest part, is that so many accept it as truth, fight for it tooth and nail, to the detriment of their fellow man.

An end to fairy tales that guide our lives, I say. These belong to the venue of children. Not adults. We should put these childish things away.

Otherwise, it's the blind leading the blind: both fall into the ditch.

See, the book of fables has the occasional use, after all.

Let the dead sleep. Let not their ghostly hands manipulate us across the centuries, let not their words and deeds influence the minutiae of our lives. There is no hereafter: there is no conscious immortality. It is a dream only, a lovely one, but one that needs fade with the light of day, the light of reason, the light of life.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

46 comments:

udonman said...

It's a central tenet of Christianity. If you don't believe in it, you're either,

A. A pagan
B. An atheist
C. A Gnostic,
D. a rational thinking person wait a minute I guess thats b isnt it

as I posted on nogodblog a coupla days ago i am thinking next easter dressing as zombie jesus and joining one of the parades (unofficially of course)

Beowulf said...

RA,

The fact that you don’t believe in the resurrection does not bother me. However, I find it interesting that in your post (in fact most of them) you never present the other side of the story. You make it sound as if Christians are dumb and childish for believing such a thing. However, you have not given us a fair shake. You have completely ignored any reason we have for believing in the resurrection.

If you, or anyone else here wants to be fair minded and know the basic reasons for why the resurrection is the best explanation for historical facts that both secular and theist scholars believe, then you can read this short article Contemporary Scholarship and the Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ by William Lain Craig.

Everyone should at least consider the reasons why Christians believe the resurrection is historical before they start writing us off as dumb for thinking so. If atheists (like “udonman”) want to take the intellectual high ground on this, then at least address the scholarship on the issue.

(oh, and in case your wondering I have read counter positions)

Anonymous said...

bf
OK, I read your article.
It is unconvincing.
The resurrection had to be real because the disciple were too dumb to concoct and carry out te story?
Please.
Elvis is alive, too.


RA
You are correct.
Childish things need to be left behind.

k.

Beowulf said...

That was an easy write off Karen. Should you ever desire to tackle the historical facts, just let me know your alternative theory and we will see how they measure up.

Anonymous said...

bf
Well, I am no scholar. I tend to side with the A and B counter-theories that the disciples made it up and/or that Jesus wasn't really dead when he went into the tomb. I also think that the Roman guard(s) could have got rid of the body.
I don't deny the empty tomb. Especially with the stone rolled away in front.
But to say it was empty because the dead body was brought back to life, then ascended into the sky? C'mon.
My folks were christian. Are you saying that if I go open their graves, their coffins will be empty?
k

Beowulf said...

Karen,

I am not asking for you to be a scholar, or even to accept the resurrection. All I’m saying is for “critics” to at least take a look at what the other positions argument is and evaluate the facts at hand, before ridicule and maybe even see if they can come up with a better explanation. Oh, and no, your parents would still be there, that’s just a misunderstanding on your part. You think it’s childish because you’re coming to the table already rejecting the possibility of the existence of God.

Anonymous said...

bf
And now that I've thought about it a bit, the third possibility, of delusions has merit also. I doubt it was a mass illusion. But when someone very important to us dies, it's very common to "see' that person after they're dead, especially if we've undergone some trauma. And I think witnessing the crucifixion could be decribed as traumatic.
So I do indeed think at least one of the apostles, or one of the Marys, may have "seen" Christ after death. They told about it, and the others, not wanting to not be able to see him, or to admit that hadn't, or whatever reason, fell in line with the tale. It's quite easy to imagine.
After all, the article states that the future of christianity depended upon the believability of Christ's resurrection. The followers just had to convince themselves to convnce others. Without reliable record-keeping, there is little challenge to the faithful.
k

Anonymous said...

bf
All I’m saying is for “critics” to at least take a look at what the other positions argument is and evaluate the facts at hand,
I've taken a look. I think I see the other side's position. I don't thinnk they've debunked the counter-arguments with any strength.
k.
P.S. Even when I was a believer, I had trouble swallowing the whole literal resurrection deal.

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
The fact that you don’t believe in the resurrection does not bother me. However, I find it interesting that in your post (in fact most of them) you never present the other side of the story.
Other side of the story? Facts speak for themselves.
I've walked that road many times before. I usually encounter the following replies:
A. That's idle speculation,
B. I'm told that I don't have enough sheepskin on the wall to be opening my mouth (perhaps not phrased that rudely),
C. I get accused of confirmation bias.

You make it sound as if Christians are dumb and childish for believing such a thing. However, you have not given us a fair shake. You have completely ignored any reason we have for believing in the resurrection.
Hey, I defer to my pathology. I believe I did indeed give it a fair shake. I think you're operating from the assumption that I approached the whole subject from an aspect of 'I don't buy any of this, let's prove it wrong.'
As to dumb & childish: let's just say, in my 20's, I was a very intelligent person, but I still did some fairly dumb & childish things.
Isaac Newton, for instance, was a brilliant man. But he was human, so that doesn't preempt the possibility he had some silly notions.

If you, or anyone else here wants to be fair minded and know the basic reasons for why the resurrection is the best explanation for historical facts that both secular and theist scholars believe, then you can read this short article Contemporary Scholarship and the Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ by William Lain Craig.
I'm sorry, but that's just another revamp of the same old dreary apologetics. I've heard all these theories before. Was wondering how you manage to embed a link in these blogger posts, though: that's pretty cool.
Everyone should at least consider the reasons why Christians believe the resurrection is historical before they start writing us off as dumb for thinking so. If atheists (like “udonman”) want to take the intellectual high ground on this, then at least address the scholarship on the issue.
Been there, done that.
You forget: I was indeed seriously considering becoming 1. Did a helluva lot of research.
(oh, and in case your wondering I have read counter positions)
As have I.

I see this is the new MO: come up w/a better story, an alternative.
Why should I? It'll be just pooh-poohed, dismissed w/a wave of the hand.
I'm not the 1 making extravagant claims here.

If I were the chief (or only) deity, & a watershed event of this magnitude, that effected the entirety of humanity, well, I'd make darn sure that it was properly documented.

Here's an interesting article:http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_packham/montgmry.html. It talks about how the gospel accounts fail the evidentiary process.

Beowulf said...

Karen,

Gary Habermas gives 19 reasons why delusions and hallucinations are inadequate explanations. here . (You will need PDF)

Beowulf said...

RA,

Hyperlinking is easy with HTML. Go here and see
Or just google “HTML Tags” for many references.

Anonymous said...

bf
I glanced at it. Will look more closely later. Thanks. Gotta go watch my grandaughter hunt easter eggs!
k

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
Which alternative story would you accept, come to think of it?
The Gnostic concept, where Yeshuda wasn't composed of an earthly body (docetism)? The metaphorical crucifixion? The Islamic theory? This 1: http://www.tombofjesus.com/core/ancient-documents/index.html?
Or maybe Didymus (aka Thomas) posed as JC, in order to keep the religion alive? The Actae Thomae says they were often confused for 1 another. Didymus translates to the 'Twin'.
I have the distinct impression that there'd be no alternative version you'd accept. We'd go round in circles, you'd pronounce 'You've got nothing!', & never the twain shall meet.
We can theorize, sure. But that presupposes that
A. JC actually existed, &
B. The 'apostles' actually existed.
Both of which would give you an edge in the premise department.
I honestly doubt premise A.
So prove me wrong.

Krystalline Apostate said...

Here
Wow, that was simple.
I'm used to the NoGodBlog, where they don't allow link ups, & using Dreamweaver & Bloggar has made me somewhat lazy.
Thanks!

udonman said...

comon karen elvis isn the true resurected god its jim morrison

and bf its amazing to me how such inteligent and rational people can such as yourself can still believe the god myth

Beowulf said...

RA,

No problem on the links. It took me a while to catch it until I saw it. So I googled it. Well, since you think links are cool.....

I go off the minimal data that secular scholars accept as history. Gary Habermas has extensively researched and quoted just about every scholar in the field and came up with facts that are universally accepted.

Here’s how he lists them:
1. Jesus died by crucifixion.
2. He was buried.
3. His death caused the Disciples to despair and lose hope.
4. Jesus' tomb was discovered (or claimed to be discovered) to be empty a few days later.
5. The Disciples believed they experienced appearances of the risen Jesus.
6. After this the Disciples were transformed from doubters into bold believers.
7. This message was the center of preaching in the early Church.
8. This message was preached in Jerusalem.
9. As a result of this preaching, the Church was born and it grew.
10. Resurrection day, Sunday, replaced the Sabbath (Saturday) as the primary day of worship.
11. James, a skeptic, was converted when he also believed that he saw the resurrected Jesus.
12. Paul, a violent enemy of Christianity, was converted by an experience which he believed to be an appearance of the risen Jesus.

All from secular scholarship.

Then there’s the Historical veracity issue. Oh, and we cant forget the pagan issues with the related possibility of a History or History Making?

There’s also Barker blunders and a pretty darn good case made by Shandon L. Guthrie .

If you think that Jesus never existed, well I recommend going here there is a refutation for every objection. And some Extrabiblical Witnesses to Jesus before 200 a.d.


I have a lot more where that came from. I know you think you have done a lot of investigating before, all I ask is a fair observation and little less ridicule.

Take care

Beowulf said...

Udonman,

Its amazing to me how such intelligent and rational people can such as yourself and RA can still reject the existence of God. So, the feeling goes both ways.

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
Well, I'm trying to be gentle here...but most of the links you've put forth?
I've been to the Doxa site. I don't recall why I dropped it. I find Glen Miller to be entirely sophistic. He writes long involved pieces that never resolve anything other than a retreat into scholarship. I haven't been influenced in the slightest by Dan Barker, Will Durant, or others. Was unaware of G.A Wells recanting his JM status, will look into it. The Thallus connection was very funny. A 2nd CE scrap of paper discovered by the 9th CE Africanus, which only tells of a solar eclipse (which, as I recall, doesn't occur on Passover/Peschal feast), isn't indicative of an extra-biblical witness. & again w/that nonsense about '500 witnesses'.
I refer you to David Fitzgerald's '10,000 Christs and the Evaporating Jesus', a recent work.
Glen Miller, BTW, is the mentor to Holding, if memory serves.
I will listen, but don't get your hopes up.
I do question my own atheism. Dubito ergo sum.
Mostly, the arguments you've presented thus far would work w/someone who already believes.
Lemmee consult my notes, I'll be back.

Beowulf said...

RA,

I’m in no way in a position to judge whether you have done your homework or not. As you said, I’m sure you have. I’m suspect because the material in your post. There are many people who frequent our blog, young people (udon, harlesss etc..). They seem to have a lot of respect for you may take what you say on authority (not sure). Though you may have weighed all the evidence and came to your own conclusions, the younger ones who frequent your blog should do the same. When you present zero opposing scholarship on your posts, they are likely to think there is none (I hope I’m wrong). Just something to consider.

Anonymous said...

Oh poop.
Udonman,

Its amazing to me how such intelligent and rational people can such as yourself and RA can still reject the existence of God.

I didn't get included. :(



Udonman
I'm so sorry for blaspheming the Great Jim by bringing up the "E" name!
Now he probably won't love me madly, wanna be my daddy...!
Sorry Jim, it was amoment's lapse! I swear! Please forgive me! I don't even LIKE the "E" guy!
k

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
I’m in no way in a position to judge whether you have done your homework or not.
Ummm...my WEBSITE might be a good place to go.
As you said, I’m sure you have. I’m suspect because the material in your post.
See above.
There are many people who frequent our blog, young people (udon, harlesss etc..). They seem to have a lot of respect for you may take what you say on authority (not sure).
Well, respect is earned. Udon & HMDK are familiar w/my efforts at the NGB.
Though you may have weighed all the evidence and came to your own conclusions, the younger ones who frequent your blog should do the same.
Anyone who's familiar w/me, my work, or my attitude knows this: Don't believe me, look it up yourself. So agreed.
When you present zero opposing scholarship on your posts, they are likely to think there is none (I hope I’m wrong). Just something to consider.
You are wrong. If you actually GO to my website, I provide all sorts of sources, scholarship, etc.
So in short, I'm nobody's boss, not a leader: I'm not poisoning the bodily fluids of the young, & I have done the research, & can prove it. It's completely on each individual to do the homework, & make their own judgment.
Nice try at poisoning the well, BTW.

udonman said...

Though you may have weighed all the evidence and came to your own conclusions, the younger ones who frequent your blog should do the same.

bf ifyour talking about me i have done the research I have taking microbiology courses ive taking evodevo courses i have been exposed to both the religious side of my family and the seculist side of my family and because of the evidence ive been presented on the seculir side of my family I am an atheist guess growing up around nature has helped shape my knowldege base on such topics as evoultion I am by no means an expert on biology and genetics or evoultion but I probally know more than the avergege church goer

karen sorry he didnt Include you it sucks to be left out doesnt it
and dont worry you are forgivin my child


and bf from what ive read you seem to be a very inteligent man who may have some control issues i am willing to bet the reaserch youve done on evoultion and related topics was not done with an open mind it seems that you have all the answers from the discovery instiute so tell me one thing when you are sitting in a pew in your church what does it feel like to be on the strings and not in control of your own life working towards this promise of eternal life but only if you play by the rules and do what your told it must be one of the worst things to know you are capeble of your own thought but traped in a state where you cannot do any thing about it because it will upset the controler (like i said control issues)

ra sorry about the long post on your blog

Krystalline Apostate said...

udonman:
ra sorry about the long post on your blog
De nada, mi amigo.
That wasn't long at all.
Nicely said, BTW.

Krystalline Apostate said...

karen:
I'm so sorry for blaspheming the Great Jim by bringing up the "E" name!
Hey doll, I'm completely lost here. Who's the great Jim? Is "E" for Easter?
I didn't get included. :(
I'm sure he wasn't being a chauvinist, dear. Simple oversight.

udonman said...

are you kidding you know thats long for me I try to be as concise as I can

RA I was going to let you know I have a cafe press acount and have one t shirt desighn and am thinking about some others if you have any ideas let me know same for same for anybody else

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
Correction time:
http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/thallus.html
"What exactly is Thallus supposed to have said about Jesus? We don't really know. We can only guess, based on an obscure passage passed down to us second-hand which already shows signs of at least one interpolation. George Syncellus, a 9th-century monk, composed a world chronicle, quoting verbatim from numerous previous chroniclers, one of whom being the 3rd-century Christian chronicler Julius Africanus. In one such case, Africanus is quoted regarding "what followed the savior's passion and life-giving resurrection" as follows:"
So that's a primary source being quoted by a secondary source quoted by a tertiary source.
Not inspiring in the least.
Anyways, my bad.

udonman said...

ra jim morison and elvis is who me and karen were refering to both died and there are stories of them coming back to life or are still alive

Anonymous said...

RA
Hey doll, I'm completely lost here. Who's the great Jim? Is "E" for Easter?
Heehee. Sorry for leaving you in the dark, love. As Udon said, the Great JIM is Jim Morrison, of The Doors.(Praise be upon Him) "E" is (shhhhh)....elvis, whose name I hate tto even type out fully in the same post!
I didn't get included. :(
I'm sure he wasn't being a chauvinist, dear. Simple oversight.
Yeah, but now, how do I know if he thinks I'm just not intelligent, just not rational, or BOTH?
SOB! And here I am, living to please him.
I feel so...intrinsically devalued!
k

udonman said...

And here I am, living to please him.
I feel so...intrinsically devalued!


karen i wouldnt say that to loud theres a bald rabid monkey that might get upsetso i wouldnt worry about bs

udonman said...

sorry I meant bf slight derail of my thought train

Anonymous said...

Udonman
Not to worry. Monkey Man is secure in my love. I think he would recognize the sarcasm, but if not, well, he lives to be jealous! ;)
Hey...you watch out for the mumps and tornadoes out there in Iowa!
karen

Beowulf said...

Oh Karen,

Its amazing to me how such intelligent and rational people can such as Karen can still reject the existence of God.

sheesh!

Anonymous said...

bf
OH, gee, THANKS!
You're a sweetheart!
karen

Krystalline Apostate said...

karen:
Hey, don't feel bad. BF just about accused me of being an atheist youth leader of some sort.
Man, don't that have a weird ring to it?
I do a reasonable impression of Elvis, BTW, but it won't carry as well on the written word.
That's okay. There's maybe hundreds of impersonators out there anyways.
Another sign you're getting older: when you hear a song from your youth on KOIT, & you can remember there was a huge controversy when it 1st came out. I was walking thru a mall a few years back, I heard the Stones belting out 'Brown Sugar': oh, wow, am I decrepit, or what?
& before you start getting irked, women age much better then men do, & live longer (tho my theory is that we get nagged to death! HAHAHAHA!).
Besides which, I'm not only getting older: I'm getting better.
But I still can't play hoops to save my life.

Anonymous said...

RA
You are a veritable Pied Piper of Young Atheists! Don't you have the Master Copy of the Secret Agenda?

I remember Brown Sugar and its controversy quite well. Those were the days, my friend. Hehheh, there goes another one! It's hard to age when the songs of our youth are still so much enjoyed today.

Besides which, I'm not only getting older: I'm getting better. True dat. Me too, I hope. Heck with that stopping at 29 thing...I stopped aging at 25!
I can't play hoops either, but I'll meet you on the tennis courts, any time!
k.

Beowulf said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Beowulf said...

RA,

“BF just about accused me of being an atheist youth leader of some sort.”

[Sarcasm] Yes, you are the cult atheist youth pastor with an agenda [/Sarcasm]

Not really; rather, my point was you had influence. It may come with the age, I don’t know.

Anonymous said...

BF
Actually, Udon and Hairless are the same age as you, and old enough to lead their own youth groups.
I don't think you have to worry about either of them being swayed by RA's writings. Are you worried about being swayed yourself?
Even the younger bloggers who may visit here from elsewhere make up their own minds. The young atheists and freethinkers we've encountered (on nogodblog)have been very intelligent, well-rounded, well-spoken, and for the most part, more mature than the young believers.
I think RA does a fine job of providing numerous links for all kinds of possible questions that may arise from his posts. He also takes correction politely if you can show that he's mistaken about anything.

I'm not saying he doesn't have influence. He probably does. I daresay he's influenced my thinking a time or three. But he's always ready to back up what he says. And he openly makes statements as his opinion. We can take it or leave it or argue the point. He loves to argue. :)
But if he's influencing anyone, it's to think for themselves; to not accept the dogma without question.
I see no harm in that.
Sounds healthy to me.
k.

udonman said...

yup RA is my god (pun intended)

Krystalline Apostate said...

BF:
[Sarcasm] Yes, you are the cult atheist youth pastor with an agenda [/Sarcasm]
Not really; rather, my point was you had influence. It may come with the age, I don’t know.

What's that? I can't hear ya, sonny. Lemmee turn up me hearin' aid.
Are there emoticons for sarcasm? Udonman & HMDK were atheists afore we met.
I fancy meself a freethinker. IOWs:
Think freely.

Krystalline Apostate said...

karen:
We can take it or leave it or argue the point. He loves to argue.
I do not! You wanna debate that point? ;) Hehehehe. Yeah, I like a good tussle.

udonman:
yup RA is my god (pun intended)
SSHHHH!! Don't let out my secret! Have you prepared the ritual sacrifice, BTW? Hehehehe.

udonman said...

yes my lord the steaks are thawing over night in my special marinade for the gril ahm uh sacrifice as we speak

udonman said...

oh yeah forgot you arent eating meat what will my punishment be oh great leader

BF do see just how silly it is to talk like you have no control over your own thoughts and have to follow cultish pratices to apise a diety and yours doesnt even present evidence he exists at least RA as in reluctant atheist exist not the skyvoice from ancient egypt

HairlessMonkeyDK said...

bf... -Thanks-... ONCE AGAIN...
for not adressing me directly.
And -thanks- for thinking that Reluctant holds some sort of sway over me... (Had you been privy to our internal memos you'd not have made such a grievous and inadvertently humorous error.).

Here's a few facts, okay?
I'm a 26 year old Dane,
I was born oblivious
as all children are...

I grew up skeptical... why?
Because I was allowed to read the Bible without blinders,
be they made by fanatics or anti-religion crusaders.
I read the bible without any preconceived notions at age 14
and it repelled me vehemently.
It was a hodgepodge of
75% pure hatred of, and destruction
for, mankind, and 25% treat people nicely if they wave the right flag.
Remind me...
WHY exactly am I to cheer for such
scorn of life, love and reason?

udonman said...

hairless just to let you know its funny the paths we each take
here we are you me and bf all 26 all have taken differnt paths towards our belief or lack therof

Krystalline Apostate said...

udonman:
oh yeah forgot you arent eating meat what will my punishment be oh great leader
Say 10 hail Ramens, call me in the mornin'. All sacrifices to be made are to be in the form of veggies, hummus & tofu. It ain't good theatre, but hey, it's healthier.
HMDK:
And -thanks- for thinking that Reluctant holds some sort of sway over me
There you are!
Hey, cut him some slack, he's never seen you go BALLISTIC on me (which you have, on the NGB).
I don't think BF was trying to cast me in the Svengali mode. Could be wrong.
It does seem as if he's trying to run interference here & there, though.
Duly appointed from on high, of course.