Sickening examples of belief

Christmas Day, 2010. Police are called to a flat in East London. They find a fifteen-year-old boy dead in a bathtub. He has over 100 injuries. He has been starved, beaten and tortured over a period of three days by his sister and her boyfriend.

RIP Kristy Bamu: Victim of his sister, Magalie, and her boyfriend, Eric Bikubi.

Why?

Because they believed that Kristy Bamu, a fifteen-year-old boy, was trying to hurt them with magic.

Take another look at that date. 2010. 21st century Britain and people are still being murdered because someone else thinks they are a witch. It all stems from Kindoki, a belief system associated with the Christian faiths of Subsaharan Africa, especially D.R. Congo. D.R. Congo, which is where Kristy Bamu and his family originated, has a population of over seventy million people, almost half of which are Christian. There are a large number of Christian sects that incorporate traditional beliefs into their methods of worship, including a strong belief in Kindoki. This has led to thousands, if not tens of thousands, of people (usually children) being abused in the name of God.

This is, frankly,unacceptable in this day and age. There is simply no excuse for people to be so poorly educated that they subscribe to these barbaric practices. I do not hold with the idea that ‘traditional beliefs should be respected’, not if those beliefs include torture and murder of others, especially children.

Do we really need to spell it out? Ok, I will: THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS MAGIC! Sorry to break it to you, but there it is. If you believe that there is, then the burden of proof lies with you, not me. Prove to me, unequivocally, that magic exists and can have a solid, physical effect on the world and I will happily change my tune. I will proclaim it from the highest buildings. I will go on national television and declare my faith in magic. I will cut off my genitals with a rusty hacksaw and nail them to my head. That’s how completely sure I am that no-one will ever be able to  prove it.

Sadly, not all victims of witchcraft get better.

I know some people who describe themselves as Wiccan and believe in magic. I respect their belief, but cannot accept that it is anything except absolute horseshit. If it gives them comfort, fine, but I am reasonably sure that they would never torture someone to death because they thought he was using magic against them. The worst that they might do is mutter a vague hope that their enemy hurts himself in some way and wait for an accident so that they could claim a victory. Hardly worth burning them at the stake, is it?

So where does the Christian fear of witchcraft come from? Because it IS a Christian influence, even if it is tied in with pre-Christian belief systems. Well, the obvious answer is Exodus 22:18 – Thou Shalt Not Suffer A Witch To Live. Here we have a problem, however. the King James Bible (from which the quote is taken) is clearly about witches, but relies on the translation of the Hebrew word kashaph, which means sorcery – specifically evil magic, designed to do harm – or possibly even poisoner. This distinguishes it from magic like parting the Red Sea, bringing people back from the dead, walking on water and so on, which are all clearly GOOD magic.

You see my problem?

I’ve ranted about religion before in my blog, but I feel I am going to need to do so again, just to vent some of these feelings of pure rage that are bubbling away inside me since re-reading about the Kristy Bamu case. So here goes:

These people are evil fucks. Anyone who supports a religion that explicitly orders that other human beings should be put to death, such as Protestant Christianity, Catholicism, Islam, Judaism and so on, are actively supporting the murder of innocent people. You are giving this religion power, therefore you are to blame for the evil done in its name. I know some will argue that the evil acts are done by individuals and that they are not following God’s teachings, but one simple glance through the bible will shatter that argument. Eric Bikubi was following God’s teaching to the letter: he was not suffering a witch to live. The fact that there is no such thing as witchcraft is neither here nor there (after all, there’s no such thing as God either), he was doing EXACTLY what his God had told him to do. He was being a good Christian.

That’s the rant over for now, but I want everyone to remember Kristy Bamu. Remember how a fifteen-year-old boy spent three days being beaten, tortured and debased. Remember how a fifteen-year-old boy was drowned in a bathtub. And remember that it was all done in the name of a loving, forgiving God.

“‘You’ve got to let Jesus into your heart!’

I Wouldn’t let him into my fucking garden!” – Dylan Moran

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9 responses to “Sickening examples of belief

  1. Oh no….

    First of all let me just say 2 things right off the bat…

    1) Do not associate the Christian religion with witchcraft! The Bible denounces it and you say that witchcraft is born of the Bible?? Not sure how that makes sense…believing in miracles done by God and through the inspiration of God is way different than witchcraft which is of the devil! And the book of Exodus that you speak of is part of the Old Testament books where angels and demons freely did walk this earth and were seen by many. Why? Because there was no Bible, the saving grace of Jesus Christ had not yet come. People knew of God by the miraculous ways in which he showed his power over evil. The Bible also speaks of false teachers and many that will commit “miracles” to deceive (Matthew 24). To me this supports the Bible it does not make a mockery of it!!!

    2) A quick glance through the Bible cannot tell you anything about it!!! That is how so many teachings get misinterpreted. Either study the Bible as a whole or don’t say anything about it!! Picking the Bible apart can support or disprove any cause. It doesn’t mean the Bible itself support or rebukes what it is that you claim it does.

    And my last comment is this….Your intentions with this post I do admire. It is absurd, crazy, and distasteful for me to try to defend any of these scums; so I assure you that that is not my intent. I just cannot stand tying this maliciousness in with Christianity and God’s intent of the Bible.

    • Right:

      1) The Christian religion has associated itself with witchcraft. I did not say that witchcraft was ‘born of the bible’ at all. I said that witchcraft was mentioned in the bible, in terms that make it very clear that Christians should be against it – as you yourself prove by claiming that witchcraft ‘is of the devil’. It is this attitude that allows abominable acts like the murder of this poor boy to occur; not once, but again and again. Witchcraft is more commonly associated with pre-Christian religions (paganism), although it is almost invariably seen as a positive thing (so-called ‘white’ magic). Anti-witchcraft feeling really kicked off with the publication of the King James Bible, from which the Exodus quote is taken. The bible was written by men, men with their own agenda. In this case, their agenda was the consolidation of power through the supression of other belief systems.

      2) As it happens, I have studied the Bible. I have also studied the writings of other religions. This is because I am an atheist and I believe in the scientific method. I believe that things need to be supported by evidence if I am to believe them, and it seems rather arbitrary of me to believe a relatively recent belief system like Christianity when there are much earlier religions that don’t require such blind faith. If the bible can support any cause, how do you know it doesn’t support that which I claim it does (although I must point out that the particular biblical quote we are talking about – ‘thou shalt not suffer a witch to live’ – is not really awash with ambiguity)?

      Finally, it is not me that is ‘tying this maliciousness in with Christianity’. These churches exist. They preach that witchcraft is real and needs to be destroyed. It is the responsibility of the organised religions (such as the Catholic Church) to clamp down on these practices to help people. Issn’t that the point of the church? Maybe they should start spending some time and money educating and assisting the people who follow their religion, rather than just feeding off them like parasites.

      • It’s funny, your post, although it does not change the truths of Christianity does open my eyes to the fact that it is the churches that are letting these people down. We as Christians do try to shy away from that in which we see as ” unholy” instead of confronting it. There are too many correlations and accuracy of events in the Bible to say that it was written just by men on their own agenda. The Bible is God inspired; but I do agree that the time period in which the book was written and the current events taken place in that time do have a great deal to do with what is said in the Bible. Except for the prophets who were given divine visions people only have what they know to go off of when writing. Which is why there are no teaching about the internet (i.e.). I enjoyed reading your post simply because it’s intellectual and it’s given me a lot to think about regarding where I stand; putting my faith into action.

      • You say that there is too much accuracy in the bible. Really? Care to offer some evidence to support that statement? Considering that even the Gospels don’t agree with each other, I find it difficult to agree. The bible is worthless as a historical document. It doesn’t offer anything in the way of solid proof. It is a collection of parables and allegorical tales rather than statements of fact. I have no wish to deny you your beliefs (whatever makes you happy/helps you sleep/floats your boat), but as I said before you need to provide evidence if you want to use words like ‘truth’ or ‘accuracy’.
        I’m very glad that this article has made you think, and I hope it can influence you positively.

  2. These are the incidents that stand out, but IMO they’re not the worse. The institutionalised support for ignorance, the effect on health (especially womens’), science, education. The delays to stem-cell research have likely killed far more people – in effect – than have been slain as witches.

    • Oh I agree. These are by no means the worst things that religion has caused. The Catholic Church’s stance on contraception, especially in AIDS-torn areas of Africa is yet another example.
      My point is the fact that the witchcraft thing is still rife in this day and age, which is horrific as far as I’m concerned.

  3. I just saw this article today actually, “Witchcraft Harming Children” it said in the Telegraph so I had to go check it out and see what was occurring. Being a witch myself I was curious as to what our stance on child harming was these days, you know, since gingerbread houses were abolished in ’64.

    I was appalled, I hate that you see this time and time again. This African child torture thing, they’re obsessed with child witches, cut them into little pieces, drown them, burn them…it’s sick. It’s utterly, utterly, depraved. Is this really what they think God wants them to do? Why, because it’s in a book? Are they fucking mental!? Well, yeah, clearly they are, I guess that was rhetorical.

    Grrr, it makes me so mad!! What’s worse is that there’s bugger all I can do about it. Well, I s’pose could inflict a curse on them but a) magic has now been proven to be horseshit and b) I’m busy.

  4. the people of Congo found this story disgusting and horrific, much as we in England did. the boys father didn’t act as soon as he could have because he didn’t believe it could be happening as he does not believe in witches, and could not see how anyone would, especially his daughter who had been living in engand for 15 years or so.
    Many parts of chrisitanity believe in possession by spirits – casting out of the devil etc. Archane and out dated, no room in the world today, responsible for death, torture and war on every land mass in the world, throughout human history. Where was Kristy’s god when he needed him? Where was the catholic god when the priests were raping and abusing children? Where is the evidence? Witches are just as believable as god(s), if you believe in a mythical deity, why wouldn’t you believe in witches/faries/father christmas?

    • I’m sure that many people in D.R. Congo found this horrific. I know that Kristy’s father tried to get back to London but couldn’t make it in time. I agree totally that belief in the Christian God seems arbitrary – why wouldn’t you believe in all the other fairy tales if you can believe the stories in the bible? This kind of fanatical belief is destructive. As you say, it can cause death, torture and war. It has no place in the modern world. We have the capability to educate everyone, but politics and religion stand in the way.

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