Posts Tagged ‘Hinduism’

Well, be warned about wasting $10 to see this film.

Man, my fraternal juices were flowing when I saw this movie and knew this post was coming (shout out to my Ice Cold brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.).

Why? Because I get to harangue a Q-Dog. No, no, not the “Atomic Dog” brothers but rather Quetzalcoatl – the triune man, dog and lizard of the Mayans who is supposed to return to earth and create his “Age of Transition” on December 21, 2012. Yawn.

Apparently, director Roland Emmerich has decided this calendar snafu was yet another excuse to destroy the world.

You see, I’ve seen most of his post-apocalyptic flicks and whether his tool for global carnage has been a radioactive iguana (“Godzilla“), global warming gone terribly awry (“The Day After Tomorrow“) or hacked-off aliens (“Independence Day“), the scripts usually blow about as bad as a drunk in a breathalyzer test.

This – fancy effects and a cacophony of explosions aside – was no exception at all.

You would think with the star power this movie had, a decent script could have been in order. Danny Glover was the president, John Cusack was our hero and Woody Harrelson even makes a cameo as a radio host with the Mayan calendar on his studio wall.

But, not so much as seen by the one obvious sci-fi nerd who left the movie early in a flurry of disgust and cussing in Klingon, or something like that.

I had to stick it out. This 2.5 hour movie feels more like 6.5, and a brother had to pee. Can I say that?

So why the commitment? I heard the kerfuffle about Emmerich deciding to destroy every Christian faith-based artifact in the world and wanted to see that for myself. St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro were the first to go. Even a gaggle of priests gets smothered.

Poor St. Peter’s Basilica. First, the anti-matter bomb in “Angels & Demons” and now this disaster. Why do producers find Christians such an easy tag for their angst? And then it dawned on me… there’s nothing of Judaic, Hindu, Buddhist or Muslim relic being obliterated here. Why not?

(Spoiler alert) Even that cute Buddhist monk survives the flood over the Himalayas, but a priest can’t get any love!

Then I discovered why the protection over other relics, specifically Muslim. Fear.

“Well, I wanted to do that, I have to admit,” Emmerich says. “But my co-writer Harald said I will not have a fatwa on my head because of a movie. And he was right. … We have to all … in the Western world … think about this. You can actually … let … Christian symbols fall apart, but if you would do this with [an] Arab symbol, you would have … a fatwa, and that sounds a little bit like what the state of this world is. So it’s just something which I kind of didn’t [think] was [an] important element, anyway, in the film, so I kind of left it out.”

What the fatwa? Seriously? Muslims scare him so the Kaaba was off-limits but Christians are pansies so the Vatican was so getting crushed.

This is a man who makes no apologies for not being the biggest fan of organized religion; yet somehow Imams freak this dude out. Nice.

You would think an espoused atheist would show equality and express his vitriol for every religion, but no, once again it’s Christianity that gets the pass on etiquette. It’s okay to thrash what we love because there’s no fear of revolt. We just don’t do that.

Sure, it could be the whole “love thy neighbor” message, but I think it smacks more of apathy. It takes a lot to get Christians to unite under one banner. Call it abortion, politics or… well, that’s about it.

Do Christians as a whole picket abortion clinics? No, but the world thinks we do. Do Christians as a whole burn Harry Potter books like a scene from “Footloose”? No, but again we are lumped into that simpleton mentality as well. Many people claim to do these things in the name of Christianity, but really, it’s just their personal issues under the guise of their beliefs. And we all get blamed for it. Sigh.

I’m not calling for Christian extremism (there’s already enough of that). I’m just saying we need to learn what is worth begin disgusted about, and let God sort out the rest. So, allow this movie to be Hollywood existentialism and some sort of catharsis for Emmerich who needs to slay his own inner demons about Jesus.

As for me and my house, I would have rather put that $10 in the offering bucket where it will do some good than in this ballyhooed movie. I suggest you do the same. Bor. Ing.

 

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Religion and animals. They have been intertwined since the beginning of time.

  • Noah had the ark, and all the animals two-by-two
  • Muslims abstain from swine
  • Mayans have a movie coming out about Quetzalcoatl
  • Mythological creatures are typically morphed humans and horses or whatever
  • Treatment of animals is holy writ according to Judaic law
  • And then there are Hindus who give a new meaning to “Holy Cow”

Looks like something from a Disney movie really

Looks like something from a Disney movie really

Evidently, they are pretty sweet on elephants, at least according to this Christian group that has been picketing the Calgary (Alberta, Canada) Zoo.

The Calgary Zoo said it has no plans to remove a dancing elephant statue after a complaint from a Christian group that it’s an inappropriate religious icon.

A private donor gave the statue, modeled after the Hindu god Ganesh, to the zoo in 2006 to stand in front of the Asian elephant exhibit. As CBC News first reported, Concerned Christians Canada sent a letter raising its concerns that the statue was “selective religious partiality” to the zoo on Thursday.

MEMO to CCC: The ecumenical pachyderm here was donated to the zoo, and in lieu of the global economy, you think they are really going to give that up in account of, what did you call it again, “Selective religious partiality”? Uh, no.

“A lot of people are saying we’re being intolerant. I don’t consider asking that the zoo look at this from a balanced perspective being intolerant,” said national chairman Jim Blake on Friday.

What? You want a crucifix to dangle in the ape exhibit, as if to tell Charles Darwin where to stick it? Perhaps, a Bible in the snake exhibit with the tempting verse from Romans 16:20 that “the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” Great, but when that happens, watch out PETA because those will make some sweet boots. Just sayin’.

See here, the fallibility of this protest is most Christians will look at that cute elephant and think, “Aw, that’s cute.” They aren’t thinking, “I’ll bet that’s a surreptitious homage to Hinduism. I’m calling the manager.”

If you want to make a difference for Jesus, pick a cause everyone understands because right now you may as well be telling kids all over Canada that zoos are of the devil. And just how “concerning” is that?

I once heard a sage pastor, who was a bit of a chauvinistic dinosaur, say when “edifying” the ladies on dating:

I have a prophecy – if the barn needs paint, break out a coat and get busy!

While the gasping and swooning was inaudible, many men were sitting in their seats and biting their lip until blood came out their nose. Ah, church. Ain’t it grand?

Look Ma, no swine. (Courtesy: AFP)

Look Ma, no swine. (Courtesy: AFP)

I was reminded of that rotund pearl of wisdom when I read this atypical story on Yahoo! about “religiously correct” make-up and a possible spiritual conversion.

For Muslim women who feel they are violating Islam’s teachings by using skin creams with alcohol and pig residues, Layla Mandi [pictured] has the answer: religiously-correct “halal” cosmetics. The Canadian makeup artist who converted to Islam is marketing cosmetics called OnePure, which she says have the luxury feel of international brands minus the elements banned under Islamic law.

For those not in the know, Kosher is to Jewish what Halal is to Muslim. It’s more than preference; it’s dogmatic law.

That said, why for, Mandi? (By the way, is it just me, or does this Muslim adherent look like some hottie outside of any beach town in the states?)

“Muslims don’t want to go around and pray five times a day having pork residues on their body,” said Mandi, in her early thirties and swathed in a slim black abaya, or cloak, with wisps of blond hair sticking from under her head scarf. “I came to the Middle East to learn more about people’s needs. Most were pretty shocked when I told them there were pork products in their skin care items so they were very interested.”

I realize it seems like she is saying there are Muslim women bathing in pickled pig’s feet, but to them, it’s the same as some Quranic women who just feel the need to douse a little foundation underneath her Hijab.

Suffice to say, this is big news in the world of marketing to Muslims, and considering the economy, good times for make-up manufacturers and the aforementioned direct sales syndicates. Again, what took so long?

I have been cooking with Morton’s Kosher salt for years, but I don’t think My Fair Lady smells bacon when she dabs on a little lipstick.

Moreover, how long is it going to take all those home-schooling mamas at church peddling Mary Kay and Avon on the side to start adding “We’re little piggy free” to all their make-up baskets?

And then there is the issue of yet another ridiculous, and soon-to-be-waaaaaay-overused PC term. Anyone catch that diabolical moniker? “Religiously Correct.” Oh. God. Help. Me. Please.

You know, let’s not stop there. In the spirit of dare not offending any religious follower, adherent or believer, how about:

  • Bovine-absent hamburgers for your favorite Buddhist. Sure, they call those vegans but let’s not worry about that right now.
  • Tantric-lite sleeping aides for that slumbering Hindu in your family. Let him or her get that Yoga on and feel refreshed once euphoria is reached. Namaste.
  • Something all of us could enjoy for a week or two, the acclaimed demon-free days. That’s right, just live without the temptation to visit ne’er-do-well Web site or charge the emergency credit card into a third-world credit rating.
  • For your friendly neighborhood Rastafarian, try the latest in marijuana-free brownies. Because when you need to cram for the next exam, why just have hippie lettuce rolled up in a fatty when you can tap into your inner Betty Crocker and get your baking on?

And for those of you needing something a little closer to the vest, wait… there’s more:

  • Condemnationally correct Baptists
  • Alcohol-correct Catholics
  • Musically included Church-of-Christs (real word?)
  • Follically and hairstyling correct Pentecostals
  • Financially correct Evangelicals (with a special emphasis on megachurch pastors and televangelists)
  • And for a bonus, just in time for Christmas, Universalism… with limits! Go figure?!

Turn your head, vegan aficionados. We are about to talk hamburger, religion and the faith it takes to crush two all-beef grilled patties.

Nummmmm-y!

Shiva? Well done.

Shiva? Well done.

It seems Burger King, home of the Whopper, committed a big one in the world of advertising recently.

So much so that the global monarch of beef had to apologize to its Hindu customers all across Spain, as seen in WOW News’ Faith Central.

It seems like an oxymoron, I know. We have Hindus who arguably adores those bovine beauties more than the PETA folks and somehow know about an advertisement at a burger joint? Stranger things have happened.

Someone is not so committed to his or her Dharma, just sayin’.

“Burger King’s judgment in associating a burger with a Hindu goddess is absolutely baffling,” commented Suhag Shukla, director and legal counsel of the Hindu American Foundation.

The Brahma bedlam incensed the Hindu nation because that cute, quad-appendaged babe in the window is actually Lakshmi – the Hindu goddess of wealth, fertility and wisdom.

Whoops.

If that lack of theological research wasn’t bad enough, there’s that catchy headline in the ad:

“La Merienda es Sagrada,” which loosely means “Tea-time is Sacred”

Some believe that literally means “snack,” but eh. And in Hindu, snack literally means “hearty lettuce and turnips with ketchup.”

So, in an effort to redefine advertising jargon”for a limited time only,” as soon as that lovely photoshopped gem went up in windows, it came down like a luscious patty slabbed on a hot and steamy grill.

Well, that’s too bad. But it is a little surprising.

Looks like Jack is a Christian. Bad King, bad!

Looks like Jack is a Christian. Bad King, bad!

Hinduism is about the most polytheistic religion in the world, so how in the world did the Hindu nation keep up with this savvy burger babe?

How many Yogis show up jonesin’ for a triple stacker? Ever seen someone with an Avatar show up for a BK Value Meal? Well, that’s Hindu?!

I don’t know if Gandhi ever made it to Barcelona but good to know reincarnation makes it way to tropical climates.

It’s just a shame because this was Lakshmi’s chance at fame. And now, because of some meddlesome, tantric lacto veg-head, she has to go back in the life of some knobby-kneed five-year old in Tibet. Poor lady.

At least she did prove another BK advertising campaign, “It takes two hands to hold a Whopper.” Not so much. Thanks, Lakshmi!

Namaste.

Meet David Engle of Overland Park, Kansas.

He is traipsing through the Kansas City Zoo with his family one fine day. Well, actually, the story doesn’t say if he was there with a family, or even a date. But if went to a zoo by himself, that would just be really sad, so I decided to presume he’s not a gomer.

Now, THIS is witnessing at the Zoo. Oy!

Now, THIS is witnessing at the Zoo. Oy!

Anywhoo, he finds the Bengal Tiger exhibit and flips his lid when he is met with people rubbing the rotund, protruding bellies of Buddha statues. The source of his angst? Righteous indignation.

“We can’t have a cross or a nativity scene on public property,” said Engle of Overland Park, who complained to a zoo employee. “It is phenomenal to me that the zoo would put up Buddha statues.”

Now, dig it, the BENGAL tiger exhibit. You know, the subcontinent? As in, not typically known for a pentecostal church, but that doesn’t stop Captain Legalism here from raising his voice so loud barnyard animals tuck tail and run for the closest hole in the ground.

The ironic thing is Buddhism isn’t typically associated with an entire country of two billion HINDUS!!! But I digress, sigh.

Engle, who said he and his family are Christians, said it was idolatry and “infuriating to God.”

See there, if I saw that in the zoo, I would just think cheeky design and a day of bland shopping at Pier 1 or Bombay led to the invasion of the pot-bellied deistic brother. But this cat wants to renew the Holy Crusades and complains to the manager. Nice.

“The zoo stays out of all politics and religion,” [Zoo Director Randy] Wisthoff said. “I’m sorry somebody interpreted it that way. I appreciate his comments and concerns. We will discuss it with our board leadership and see if they want me to get rid of them.

MEMO to Engel: Next time, you visit the zoo, consider your geography, history and theology before you appear as just some tool and cause those poor, defenseless “Jesus Lizards” to have the atheist animals ask, “So, is this how your people act all the time?”