Here’s Where You Can Stick Your Bible After You Take An Atheist To The Sistine Chapel

When you open a blog post with, “Not trying to start a fight here, but this probably will.”, you’ve already lost. You’ve lost at life, you’ve lost any right to call yourself a writer, and you should lose the privilege of posting to the Chicago Now Blog. This is just the absolute most mindless, uncreative and useless opening line of any blog post, ever, including the tried and tested, “Sorry I haven’t written for a while.” horseshit.

I may be an atheist, but I am a writer before that, and this should just simply be the end of anyone’s writing career. For fuck’s sake, someone take his keyboard away.

Of course, even if someone did, it wouldn’t have been soon enough to have prevented the rest of his post.

Meet Jack Spatafora, ladies and horny men. He shares the same simpleton headcock as Ray Comfort and the facial hair of Ken Ham, the famous dinosaur training expert.

And he’s discovered the tour guide’s dilemma.

After someone who doesn’t accept the idea of a God properly oo’s and ahh’s in this sacred place [The Sistine Chapel], there really isn’t much to show them next.

I don’t really feel comfortable with where this is headed, Jack. I feel like you’re fixing to whip out your little bishop. Let’s talk about this calmly, before anyone gets arrested in the Sistine Chapel for indecent exposure.

I mean, people throughout history — from pagans to Jews to Christians to Muslims — have been inspired by their beliefs to create stunning works of art and architecture.

Very good, Jack. Did you also know they’ve been inspired by nature and science? It’s true!

The number of these inspiree’s totals in the millions from the Stonehenge builders, to Shakespeare, on to musical giants like Bach, Mozart and Billy Joel.

If you hadn’t already lost with your opening line, Jack, you would have just lost associating Billy Joel with the Sistine Chapel.

On the other side of the ledger, whatta ya got? A great many angry manifestos and declamations and even Supreme Court decisions. But darn few Pyramids, Pantheons, St Peter’s, ‘Hamlets’ and ‘Our Town’s.’ When your core belief is disbelief, what grand sounds and images are you inspired to create?

Um.

Moon Landing

Have fun with your paints, Jack. We’ll be up here.

Hadron Collider

That kazoo is cute, Jack, but I’m a bit busy with my collider.



Carina Nebula

Please, Jack, keep your play dough away from the telescope.

You were saying… Jack?

This is not to say atheists can’t savor great religious art. They do. But it seems when they do, they have to applaud the artist’s efforts at the same time they are laughing at his/her inspiration.

You mean money, Jack? We’re laughing at money? You do know that the artists behind the artwork at the Sistine Chapel were all commissioned by the church, right? The very same organization that controlled most of the economy at the time? These artists chose their subject matter, because they were being paid to do so. As Richard Dawkins once said, so perfectly,

If heโ€™d [Michelangelo] been commissioned to do the ceiling of a museum of science, wouldnโ€™t he have produced something just as wonderful?

How about the artists who weren’t paid large sums to do a commissioned painting? Like Mark Twain? Isaac Asimov? Bukowski? Proust? Kafka? Arthur Miller? How about Claude Monet, one of the most prolific impressionists to have ever painted, and the artist behind some of the most stunning artwork the world has ever seen?

What about those guys, Jack?

Maybe this is why most uneducated believers seem to get more out of the Sistine Chapel than over-educated skeptics

Now, Jack, self-loathing isn’t going to get you anywhere. You know us educated folk appreciate it even more than you do, because beyond the art inside, this building was created with science and architecture.

Now zip your fly back up, Jack. Your bible is showing.

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Category: Debate, Jeebots | Tags: ,
  • Dawndee Nicole

    As usual, a laughfest! “Money Jack, you mean money” Funny, now as an atheist I find art much more interesting. I haven’t seen the Sistine Chapel but will on my next Euro trip. I have been to the Louvre a few times.

    I find it absolutely hilarious when you walk into the room to see the Mona Lisa – its tiny, maybe 11″ x 13″? – it’s behind bulletproof glass – you can barely see it through the masses of people, and to try and get a front row view is risking your life.

    Then, laughingly on the direct opposite wall is a HUMONGEOUS I mean HUGE (25 feet long by 15 feet high) is the painting Wedding Feast at Cana. Most people don’t notice it’s even there!

    So, Leonardo trumps this huge painting depicting one of Jesus’s miracles. Science wins again.

    • Oh man, I want to see all of those things! Especially the Louvre. That would just blow my mind. I have always been an atheist and always been able to appreciate art. Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚

  • That nebula is stunning. Love your zippy writing style too, I love reading it in my mind in the ‘stream of consciousness’ style of Iliza Shlesinger, with all the same intonation that just screams “grow the fuck up”.

    Thanks for an enjoyable read. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • thank you so much for the compliments! it means a lot ๐Ÿ™‚

  • erock68la

    Maybe artists were inspired by their beliefs, but more importantly, they were PAID by their church.

  • Nineball

    Times like this I am glad Godless Mom is on OUR side.
    Wonderfully done as always GM!

  • Thom

    Michelangelo, Bernini, Raphael, Da Vinci, Caravaggio all created sculpture and/or paintings of Greek Gods. In fact, Classical Art was a return to Greek and Roman subject matter. Were they inspired by God to create those ones too. It’s just a rumor, but I heard that the God of the Catholic Church is a pretty damn jealous individual.
    Oh yeah, most of those artists had romantic relationships with same-sex partners which they kept secret, Caravaggio was a narcissist and murderer, Da Vinci was more interested in studying the natural world than god, and Bernini was a megalomaniac who nearly beat his brother to death for sleeping with his lover.
    Now that I actually think about it, Bernini was most likely inspired by god.
    But the others, maybe perhaps it was possibly the large sums of money and fame? maybe possibly?

  • John Smith

    First of all, as someone who as been in the Sistine Chapel multiple times and has definitely had euphoric and epiphany-like experiences just standing in the presence of such great work, I can honestly say that I didn’t feel suddenly “Closer to God” when I was there… and I was still a theist when I was there (over a decade ago).

    I studied a lot of art history in college. Nothing compares to actually seeing Michelangelo’s David up close… actually seeing Bernini’s “Ecstasy of St. Theresa” in person… actually being in the Sistine Chappell. Slides in an art class don’t do those things justice. Certainly those are life experiences that I will never forget. Having said that, I can appreciate great works of art, be inspired by them, admire the talented men who made them… and still be an atheist now.