back to article Irony's lost on old Pope Francis: Pontiff decrees fake news a 'serious sin'

Christmas is typically a busy time of year for the Holy Father, but thankfully Pope Francis has found time to decree that made-up stories are a "serious sin". In fact, @Pontifex plans to dedicate his upcoming annual communications message to this pressing world problem of "fake news", according to Associated Press. He told …

  1. cookieMonster

    amen

    Have a pint!!

  2. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    New first page of the Bible.

    "To my darling Candy. All characters portrayed within this book are fictitious and any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental."

    1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: New first page of the Bible.

      "To my darling Candy. All characters portrayed within this book are fictitious and any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental."

      That second sentence reminds me of a very similar line in an episode of "Red Dwarf", about archeologists on Earth finding the long lost first page of the Bible

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: New first page of the Bible.

        The first sentence should as well, since that's what I'm quoting.

  3. codejunky Silver badge

    Hah

    Excellent article. Love the title too

    1. BillG Silver badge
      Megaphone

      Re: Hah

      Some of these fake news websites are one-man operations, making boatloads of money in advertising. I always wondered if that is strictly legal.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Hah

        The big ones have a single man figurehead but make most of their money from property, donations from the poor and creative banking services to certain Sicilian family businesses

        1. King Jack Silver badge
          Headmaster

          Re: Hah

          You forgot closed books and tax free. That is where the money is.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Hah

            The trick is to run an international bank from the center of the capital city of one of the more corrupt european countries with no border controls but not be in the Eu so there is no oversight of your banking regulations.

  4. Chris G Silver badge

    Sooo.. Parables are out then?

  5. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Facepalm

    News from 20 minutes into the future...

    "Did you hear that? The Pope said something very important today. Very. Important. Fake News is a sin. That's what the Pope said. When CNN put up Fake News about me, they are sinning. When the BBC put out fake news about me, they are sinning. The mainstream media are sinners, and they will burn in hell. It's not me who said it, that's what the Pope said." Etc etc...

    1. TonyJ Silver badge

      Re: News from 20 minutes into the future...

      "..."Did you hear that? The Pope said something very important today. Very. Important. Fake News is a sin. That's what the Pope said. When CNN put up Fake News about me, they are sinning. When the BBC put out fake news about me, they are sinning. The mainstream media are sinners, and they will burn in hell. It's not me who said it, that's what the Pope said." Etc etc..."

      Bet you all read that in his voice then, too? I know I did :)

      1. John G Imrie Silver badge

        Re: News from 20 minutes into the future...

        20 Minutes into the Future and I get Max Headroom, but then I'm old enough to remember when the future was going to be fun.

        1. Teiwaz Silver badge

          Re: News from 20 minutes into the future...

          20 Minutes into the Future and I get Max Headroom, but then I'm old enough to remember when the future was going to be fun.

          Well, not a lot of fun in Max Headrooms '20 minutes into the future' dystopia - choice of dull corporate pawn or slumming it as a blank...

          I was just (about) old enough to have had puppyish warm feelings about Amanda Pays (Theora Jones) though...

  6. handleoclast Silver badge
    Pint

    I love the final paragraph

    Anyway, thank God someone has taken the unprecedented step of speaking out against made-up stories that have no bearing in fact but are nonetheless taken as gospel...

    That's some of that there coppery stuff, isn't it?

    Have a pint on me. You'll need a few drinks inside you when (if) the handful of religious commentards finally figure out what you were getting at.

    Ob Christmas Reading: this, this and this (skip the intro by the editor, the only bit you need is that Paine uses "Bible" to mean the OT and "Testament" to mean the NT). If the TV programming is excessively shite (as it usually is at this time of year) you could always read this little bundle.

    1. Denarius Silver badge

      Re: I love the final paragraph

      and your evidence for these beliefs ? Just another parrot of current dominant belief system. Dull, old, predictable and not supported by evidence, like the claims of oral tradition made by the current relic of a dead empire. Fundamentalist materialists are the most dogmatic believers I run across, nearly as bad as Xtians who are atheists in all but name but like to use bastardised New Testament jargon. To his credit Dawkins loathes them. Flame away with the latest propaganda from the 18th and 19th century...

      1. handleoclast Silver badge

        Re: I love the final paragraph

        @Denarius

        Flame away with the latest propaganda from the 18th and 19th century...

        An interesting viewpoint you have there. Is it based upon the idea that facts deteriorate with age or is it based upon the idea that logic deteriorates with age?

        It must be that facts deteriorate with age. Because new facts may turn up. But if new facts don't turn up then the existing conclusions stand.

        So if you'd pointed me at newer research showing the reading I cited to be factually incorrect, I'd agree with you. Instead you're using a fallacy that could be used to dismiss Boolean algebra (invented in 1847) for designing logic circuits.

        BTW, Remsburg did get one thing wrong that I know of. Where he claimed that OT patriarchs were named after Babylonian kings. Feel free to point out any other errors you find. But even if you manage to discredit every bit of his historical research, the internal contradictions in the Bible that he pointed out are still valid.

        Oh, and irony of ironies (how ironic, given this thread), I'll just turn your argument back on you: Flame away with the latest propaganda from the 3rd century...

    2. Morten_T

      Re: I love the final paragraph

      "The TV programming is excessively shite (as it usually is)."

      There, FTFY ;)

  7. ukgnome Silver badge

    Dear Alanis Morrisette - this is what irony looks like.

    1. Tempest8008

      Oi, lay off Alanis.

      What is more ironic than a song about irony with no real irony in it?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I quite like this one,

        Link

  8. Paul Herber

    Comments from anyone named Matthew, Mark, Luke or John especially welcome...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      but judas can fuck off.

      1. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
        Coat

        but judas can fuck off.

        "Oi! I did nuffin'. It was those bastards down at the Gethsemane Chronicle spinning it like it was all my fault. I wasn't even in the country at the time. I come back, find I'm dead, apparently, I'm hated by everyone, and not a sign of those thirty pieces of silver I am meant to have earned.

        "And meanwhile there's some geezer calling himself Pontiff pushing out relics and saints like there's no tomorrow. "It's all kosher", he says. Sure; Happy Hannukah.

        " It's the last time I vote to leave the Roman Empire. Fuck Rexit."

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Ah.. the gospel word from Paul.

  9. Milo Tsukroff
    Coat

    It's not fake news, it's Oral Tradition

    It's not fake news, it's Oral Tradition. As good as Gospel. https://www.catholic.com/tract/scripture-and-tradition

    I'll get my coat. Mine's the one with the bible in the pocket.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's not fake news, it's Oral Tradition

      If there's one thing the Catholic Church needs to stay away from it's oral tradition.

    2. Bill M

      Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

      Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

        Only the missionary is acceptable.

        1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

          Re: Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

          But where can I find a missionary these days to bonk?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

            "But where can I find a missionary these days to bonk?"

            Ding dong...

            but don't tie them up.

          2. Teiwaz Silver badge

            Re: Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

            But where can I find a missionary these days to bonk?

            Meanwhile in Belfast...

            Missionaries, no. But you can't walk on somedays without tripping over annoying evangelists down from Martyrs Memorial...

            1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

              Re: Is oral sex ok, as long as it is traditional ?

              That's what Belfast needs - more choice of religous extremists.

              At least an orange-robe march would be colourful

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So if I read a story about a virgin getting pregnant travelling by donkey to have a baby in a manger as there was no room at the inn and she gets visited by three kings bearing gifts proclaiming him the son of god I'm just to dismiss it as fake news?

    This is all very confusing and contradictory.

    1. veti Silver badge

      if that story is presented as "news", I would seriously consider finding an alternative newsfeed.

      On the other hand, if it's presented as background knowledge that's pretty important to know about if you want to make any kind of sense out of - well, western civilisation basically - or a story used to hang contemporary morals on, then I would just acknowledge it for what it is and carry on with my day.

      Seriously, comparing church doctrines with "fake news" is a cheap shot, and one that suggests both ignorance of and indifference to the Roman Catholic position on biblical teaching.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Sure it's not all faked, some of it is just copied from other people's myths

        1. heyrick Silver badge

          Ah, so there are copyright issues here, too, then?

          Just give Disney a few more years of lobbying to the current protectionist president and the term of copyright will be measured in millennia.

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Would be an interesting day in court.

            You Mr YHVH are charged that you did copy almost all of your novel from my client Marduk.

            I would like to point out that any floods, plagues of locusts or striking down of first born members of the jury will be considered contempt of court.

      2. unimaginative

        "Seriously, comparing church doctrines with "fake news" is a cheap shot, and one that suggests both ignorance of and indifference to the Roman Catholic position on biblical teaching."

        And which part of that do you find surprising from The Register of all things? If you read it for a while no one on the staff have any idea of religious beliefs or the reasoning behind them. As for cheap shots, sure that is pretty much their style regardless of subject?

        1. #define INFINITY -1 Bronze badge

          @unimaginative

          Unfortunately Atheist most often means Antitheist. If you argue ... let the labelling begin!

          1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

            Re: @unimaginative

            Reasoning behind religious beliefs? Reason and religious belief are quite separate from each other.

  11. Tigra 07 Silver badge
    Facepalm

    In other words:

    Fake news is bad...says representative for biggest piece of fiction in history.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wonderful stuff

    Warms the heart of a grumpy, atheist lefty, particularly at this time of year. At school, we used to have and edition of the bible called the 'Good News Bible'. Instead of the 'Good News Bible' hopefully they'll start printing the 'Fake News Bible'. Or is that just any Bible?

    * Even though it's completely content free, the King James Version has some fab use of English, and some of the more poetic books like Isaiah read really well, even if it's, well......you know.....nonsense.

    ** I've now said the word 'Bible' too much, and it's starting to seem quite an odd word.

    1. Tigra 07 Silver badge

      Re: Wonderful stuff

      Haven't you seen the Arc Encounter in the US? Apparently Noah was sharing his arc with dinosaurs.

      How did a carpenter catch two tyrannosaurus Rex, transport them to his boat, and keep them calm and captive for 40 days? And that's without mentioning the obvious flaws with the story.

      1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

        Re: Wonderful stuff

        How did a carpenter catch two tyrannosaurus Rex, transport them to his boat, and keep them calm and captive for 40 days?

        By giving them the same cool drugs as smoked by whoever built that madness in Kentucky. I bet they were quite content chillaxing while having some really cool drugs for 40 days. The only issue is - while I have no objection to people smoking cool stuff, not sharing it is criminal.

    2. nijam Silver badge

      Re: Wonderful stuff

      > it's starting to seem quite an odd word.

      It's just Greek (more or less) for "book". File under Science Fiction, as Roy Harper once put it.

    3. Pedigree-Pete Bronze badge
      Happy

      Re: Wonderful stuff

      @nick_rampart. Say "Bible" with a Rowen Atkinson "Blackadder" accent and see if it sounds better. PP

      Fibble.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Belief and Lies?

    Is there a difference when someone genuinely believes what they are saying as opposed to when someone lies just for the sake of it?

    1. handleoclast Silver badge

      Re: Belief and Lies?

      Is there a difference when someone genuinely believes what they are saying as opposed to when someone lies just for the sake of it?

      You mean when what they're saying is contradicted by facts and/or contains internal contradictions but they believe it anyway?

      The word is "fuckwittery." Often pronounced "faith."

      1. jmch Silver badge

        Re: Belief and Lies?

        "contains internal contradictions but they believe it anyway"

        The human mind is extremely irrational, and many people are completely at ease with simultaneously believing multiple contradictory "facts" with little or no discomfort.

        Perhaps the ultimate test for AI!

      2. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Belief and Lies?

        You mean when what they're saying is contradicted by facts and/or contains internal contradictions but they believe it anyway?

        The word is "fuckwittery." Often pronounced "faith."

        Sometimes it's also politics.

      3. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: Belief and Lies?

        The word is "fuckwittery." Often pronounced "faith."

        Doublethink

        Nothing wrong with 'having faith' per se....

        'Faith and logic are like the shoes on your feet, you can get further with both than you can with just the one.'

        the 'monk' Alwynn from last episode of Season 4 B5.

    2. Paul Kinsler
      Happy

      Re: Belief and Lies?

      Sometimes it's hard to tell: are we really supposed to believe that sheep can form solitons?

      http://arxiv.org/abs/1712.05774

      1. Arthur the cat Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: Belief and Lies?

        Sometimes it's hard to tell: are we really supposed to believe that sheep can form solitons?

        I hope so. Given that solitons are great for long distance transmission of information without dispersion, we could use sheep to carry IP packets at distances too great for pigeons.

    3. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

      Re: Belief and Lies?

      Stop apologising for The Guardian.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Belief and Lies?

      "Is there a difference when someone genuinely believes what they are saying as opposed to when someone lies just for the sake of it?"

      There is a third option. It's called "lip service" in order to protect yourself against being kicked out of the group or suffering a worse punishment.

  14. Pollik

    ...

    Wag wag oops.

  15. Permidion

    priests are not journalists

    and journalists are not priests

    some people here are trying to be funny and fail miserably

    1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
      Trollface

      Somebody needs to read/watch American Gods.

      1. John H Woods Silver badge

        Somebody needs to read/watch American Gods.

        Almost everybody

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      What about the Spanish Inquisition?

      Nobody expects that.

    3. Tigra 07 Silver badge
      Trollface

      RE: Permidion

      At least a journalist's source exists...

      What will Jesus say when he realises we've mistranslated "God hates figs so badly for so long"?

      1. Arthur the cat Silver badge

        Re: RE: Permidion

        What will Jesus say when he realises we've mistranslated "God hates figs so badly for so long"?

        As any fule kno, the bible already pointed out that Jesus hated figs.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      priests are not journalists

      and journalists are not priests

      Yep, journalists don't kiddy fiddle in any way like priests.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Yep, journalists don't kiddy fiddle in any way like priests."

        Several famous writers/journalists have been known as having a liking for boys. John Betjeman was reputed, after his death, to have been so inclined. Thomas Mann used his own inclinations as the basis of his novel "Death in Venice". Oscar Wilde goes without saying.

        The mid-20th century ex-pat colonies round the Mediterranean are well documented in various biographies and autobiographies. Tangier was then a favourite location to live or take holidays. Simon Raven was apparently as hedonistically amoral in real life as the characters in his stream of novels.

        Those were often writers who were journalists as well - the profession definition is flexible. Writers often supplement their income/fame by journalism. Journalists pen their books alongside the day job of reporting.

        Foreign correspondent Michael Davidson near the end of his life wrote two very frank autobiographies which received favourable reviews when published in the 1960/70s.

        Biographies and autobiographies are interesting windows on times past. Nowadays too often they are just celebrity gossip with no real insights into people's lives, motivations, and the mores of their times.

        1. Dagg

          "Yep, journalists don't kiddy fiddle in any way like priests."

          Yea, but here in Oz the vast amount of the fiddling was by the church >90% and the Catholics were 60% overall.

          No percentage was supplied for writers or journalists. And considering these writers mentioned, were they just Gay or did they actually prey on young children?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "[...] were they just Gay or did they actually prey on young children?"

            Good question. You have to include heterosexual in the list of possibilities when talking of predators - in fact it may be the highest probability group. Predation is sometimes just uncontrolled lust - but often it is primarily the desire to exercise power over a weaker person. If you hold a position of power/influence in the hierarchies of society, no matter how lowly, then you are better placed to be a predator.

            You also have to think about the nuances of the word "children". The target age range of boys for those writers quoted was probably a gaussian curve of 18 down to possibly 13. The latter often being regarded as an age to be working to help support their families before WW2 - even in developed countries. Apparently younger prepubescent children, boys and girls, were probably more likely to be targeted by married straight men.

            Many boys in the Mediterranean countries seemed to have an economic relationship with ex-pats - who they themselves selected. Not necessarily pure mercenary prostitution - but preferably a benefactor to secure them against an otherwise hard life in the city.

            Naples and Rome were probably more notorious than Tangier. It must also be remembered that in all those countries families kept their girls and women under very tight control - to the sexual frustration of the local boys and youths. In Italy - to visit a heterosexual brothel the boys could earn some money first by making themselves available on the streets at well-known tourist places. The Tangier boys would try to become someone's domestic help as their major function. To a large extent that heterosexual purdah was also true in northern Europe and the UK until about the 1970s.

            The Weimar Republic of Christopher Isherwood was a classic case of boys becoming hustlers in Berlin out of family necessity - and hoping to escape from that environment through a longer term beneficial relationship.

            On the other hand - one of the relatively young current UK comedians describes in his autobiography how he went hunting for meetings with older men when he was only a young teenager. A middle-aged gay acquaintance tells me that he has been disconcerted by how many apparently under-18 boys approach him on Grindr. In the 1980s a young gay acquaintance quipped about how many married men in his small UK town wanted his services. The UK TV original "Queer As Folk" series explored that theme. The USA version upped the age of the young protagonist by a couple of years - presumably to reflect their generally higher threshold age of legal consent.

            Like many "moral" problems there are shades of grey rather than the neat black & white statements of politicians and vested interests. Too often those in positions of power and influence who frequently condemn certain "immoral" things - are caught out later indulging in, or covering up, the very same practices.

  16. bernardo.ortiz

    Have you guys read the 10 commandments

    Here, I pulled this off wikipedia:

    The Ten Commandments, also known as the Decalogue, found in the Ark of the Covenant are:

    I am the Lord your God, You shall have no other gods before me.

    You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them.

    You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.

    Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.

    Honour your father and your mother.

    You shall not murder.

    You shall not commit adultery.

    You shall not steal.

    You shall not give false testimony against your neighbour,

    You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbour

    If you look, number 9 states that bearing false testimony is a sin. The pope is only restating one of the 10 commandments which all Jews, Christians, and Muslims hold as true. In any and all of these religions and various sects, these statements are blasphamous!

    I am not very religious, but at least I try to be respectful!

    1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      Read this and try again.

    2. handleoclast Silver badge

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      Yeah, except those are not the 10 commandments. They're just 10 of the 613 commandments in the Pentateuch. You're thinking of the ones on tablets of stone, which are a different set of 10 of the 613 commandments. It's all explained here.

      For what it's worth, I've never broken the 10th commandment. Never even wanted to. Why would anybody in their right mind want to boil a young goat in his mother's milk?

      1. Paul Herber

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        Otherwise known as Space Corp Directives.

      2. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        Why would anybody in their right mind want to boil a young goat in his mother's milk?

        Not a commandment, per se, but part of the Kosher rules for food. From what I can tell, they were to keep the multitudes from making themselves sick.

        1. handleoclast Silver badge

          Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

          @Mark 85

          Not a commandment, per se, but part of the Kosher rules for food. From what I can tell, they were to keep the multitudes from making themselves sick.

          From Exodus:

          34:26 The first of the firstfruits of thy land thou shalt bring unto the house of the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in his mother's milk.

          So yes, a commandment. The tenth of the ten commandments. The ones on tablets of stone and with which JHVH made his covenant with Israel. The ones which were so holy they went into the ark of the covenant, which ended up in the sanctum sanctorum, the holiest room of the holy temple. Definitely a commandment. A biggy. One of the ten most important rules of human conduct. Slavery is wonderful (detailed instructions given). Rape is OK if you marry her afterwards. Murder is wrong, but killing in war and religious execution is OK. Goat-boiling is definitely out.

          You're right that some of the dietary rules seem to be an attempt to keep Jews from eating foods that rapidly go off in that climate, back in the days without refrigeration (an all-knowing God ought to have qualified those commandments with "it's unclean unless you keep it on ice"). But the kosher rule about not mixing meat with dairy is merely carrying the goat-boiling prohibition to extremes, just to make certain they don't accidentally break it.

          1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

            Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

            Pork is banned as it tastes like humans.

            1. 404 Silver badge

              Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

              "Pork is banned as it tastes like humans"

              Who did the taste test may I ask? Don't fuck with my bacon.

              1. Swarthy Silver badge
                Boffin

                Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

                "Pork is banned as it tastes like humans"
                This is mostly correct. Pork is banned for the same reason that it tastes like human - the protein structures are very similar. This means that pigs can carry diseases that can infect people, and certain parasites that like pigs like people just as well. So pork must be very carefully raised, and/or cooked through to be safe, neither of which were common occurrences back when.

                I don't know if there was any taste-testing done at the time, but if you are ever around when someone gets a truly narsty burn, you can note the resemblance to roast pork.

                1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

                  Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

                  There's a reason they call it Long Pig.

              2. sisk Silver badge

                Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

                Pork is banned as it tastes like humans

                No, pork is banned because if you are using primitive cooking methods to cook a pig outside of the modern industrialized world you risk getting trichinosis.

                Consider this for a moment: there was a study a while back about on how to identify animals that are safe to eat in a survival situation. I think it was done by the US Navy. That study mirrored the broad advice in Leviticus 11 (fish with scales and fins, all birds except birds of prey, and land animals with cleft hooves that chew cud).

    3. Cereberus

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them.

      Think how many blasphemers there are though. The commandment (excerpt above) doesn't state you shouldn't make yourself an image and bow down or worship them.

      So does this mean that anybody who has ever made a cuddly little rabbit, painted a picture of a dog, used a photograph with of anything ever is a blasphemer? It does say an image of anything in heaven, on earth or in the water.

      Just asking, a proper response from a religious point of view is welcomed, but not the old get out clause of it being a story to represent......and isn't 'strictly' true.

      1. handleoclast Silver badge

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        @Cereberus

        So does this mean that anybody who has ever made a cuddly little rabbit, painted a picture of a dog, used a photograph with of anything ever is a blasphemer? It does say an image of anything in heaven, on earth or in the water.

        Yes, it means precisely that.

        Which is why the early Catholic church went around destroying Roman and Greek works of art (the few examples we have left managed to escape that destruction by the iconoclasts).

        Of course then the Catholics got into that particular form of fetishism (meant in the theological sense, not the paraphilic sense) of idolatry. Which they got around by calling it hagiolatry, which made it OK, because reasons.

        Until the Protestant reformation. They went around breaking up crucifixes and destroying Catholic religious art and idols.

        The Protestants got tired of doing that, and now some of them even have cellphones with cameras. One day they may even figure out how to use them.

        Islam, of course, never got over it. Although they're starting to say that photos are sometimes OK even though the prophet (pizza be upon him) says images are not OK. I did once e-mail some "Ask the Imam" site why it was OK to have his photo on the website. Eventually he answered me with "Mumbo jumbo, it's halal not haram, because reasons"

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

          "Islam, of course, never got over it."

          Depends on which branch. The Sufi side seem to be happy with images in art, drinking wine, and same-sex relationships.

          On the latter someone once pointed out the possible sophistry in the biblical proscription of "man with man". A "man" is elsewhere defined as a male who is able to grow a strong beard.

          The Ancient Greeks determined when a boy was now ready to take on adult responsibilities by a panel judging such physical characteristics. More recently one of the warring factions in the Middle East only accepted young recruits if they met that same beard criterion.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

          "Which is why the early Catholic church went around destroying Roman and Greek works of art [...]"

          Their morbid interest in nudity and sex also played a part. Amazing how many naked male statues had apparently had just their genitalia smashed off completely. In Greek sculpture they were usually represented as fairly compact and not as vulnerable as fingers or noses.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

          "The Protestants got tired of doing that, and now some of them even have cellphones with cameras. "

          A few years ago a friend asked me to keep her visiting Germano-Turkish teenage godson occupied while she was at work. We did the usual London sights and he took lots of pictures with a film camera. After going home to Istanbul he reported all the selfie pictures "lost". Apparently he got into trouble with his father for taking them.

          What was strange was that his father's job was as a football match commentator - presumably on TV.

          On a busy train the boy once enlightened me about the ritual of circumcision when he was aged 7. It was interesting to notice the reactions of fellow passengers who overheard. Why as late as age 7? Because apparently it is necessary for the boy to remember the event for the rest of his life. It is his initiation into belonging to that group.

          He certainly remembered the way a "celebration party" suddenly revealed its true purpose on the other boys present. He said he ran round the room but couldn't escape.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        "So does this mean that anybody who has ever made a cuddly little rabbit, painted a picture of a dog, used a photograph with of anything ever is a blasphemer"

        A piece of Islamic art was of the geometric repeated pattern type. It contained the same image of a bird many times. However it was apparently ok - if you looked closely you could see its throat had been cut.

    4. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      Although Jesus himself replaced The Ten Commandments with The Two Commandments.

      1. VinceH Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        "Although Jesus himself replaced The Ten Commandments with The Two Commandments."

        Are you sure that wasn't George Carlin? See the link posted by Aladdin Sane above.

      2. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        Re: The Two Commandments

        Are you sure that was not the "Two Condiments" he was talking about?

        Salt & Pepper.

      3. sisk Silver badge

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        Although Jesus himself replaced The Ten Commandments with The Two Commandments.

        Say that at a multi-denomination religious event (like a Christian rock concert) and you'll find yourself at the center of a doctrinal debate that's been raging for centuries.

        Some denominations hold that to be true. Others hold that the Two Commandments simply added to the Ten. And still others theorize that if you hold to the Two Commandments you will also be following the Ten whether you try to or not.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      Read them? They're my daily ToDo List!

      No I'm not going to Hell, Satan's got a restraining order out on me.

    6. sisk Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

      I am not very religious, but at least I try to be respectful!

      And that is very much an attitude to be respected and encouraged. Have a pint on me.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Have you guys read the 10 commandments

        "I am not very religious, but at least I try to be respectful!"

        I find this time of year interesting. When sending cards to my neighbours I always choose one that fits their known beliefs. If they have children then they usually get a Santa Claus one. For Catholics or Evangelicals a nativity scene. Jehovah's witnesses get a Winter Greeting.

        The cards they send in return are generally according to their religion. The Jehovah's Witnesses - friendly as we are - don't send one. The Catholics and Evangelists send a pure religious theme - even though they know I am an atheist. Not surprising as the latter usually credit their god for any altruistic benefit I bestow on their families.

        One exception is the Hindus who send something on the secular Christmas season.

  17. Potemkine! Silver badge
    Devil

    You'll burn in hell for this title

    Ah ah! Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition! ^^

  18. Thoguht Silver badge

    So this is Christmas

    "looking for things that are old news and have been dealt with and bringing them to light today"

    Well, that just about wraps it up for the Christian message, doesn't it.

  19. x 7 Silver badge

    Well.......by saying that he'll have pissed off the bible bashers, but just imagine what the readers of the Koran are going to think

  20. Semtex451 Silver badge
    Windows

    The FSM agrees with the Pope on this (it told me so)

  21. Thanks75216

    Jokes are not lies

    However slander and lies are published in fake news, therein lays the sin.

    "Setting aside, therefore, jokes, which have never been accounted lies, seeing they bear with them in the tone of voice, and in the very mood of the joker a most evident indication that he means no deceit, although the thing he utters be not true: touching which kind of discourse, whether it be meet to be used by perfect minds, " St Augustine

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    you will laugh

    until the real nukes start flying after fake news. Ah, never mind, that flash was ju

  23. Sam Therapy
    Angel

    Ah, irony. Nice one, Your Popeness.

  24. Mike Moyle Silver badge

    He said fake NEWS is a sin; there's nothing wrong with fake OLDS!

    I mean... Be fair!

  25. Mephistro Silver badge
    Flame

    Pope Francis has his definitions wrong

    "... defamation, looking for things that are old news and have been dealt with and bringing them to light today."

    I think that's not "defamation", and "been dealt with" does not equal "been swept under the rug and hidden by any means available for hundreds of years".

    Consider all those secret children cemeteries under orphanages and convents. Should the press stop informing we, the public, when one of these secret cemeteries is discovered?

    A little bit too transparent, Your Holiness.

  26. Vanir

    Planetary scale fake production

    enabled by modern information technology: may God bless us all IT workers.

    Religious leaders never seem to consider that their religion makes the faith that is the basis of it a fake faith.

    Oh the irony!

  27. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge

    Consider, for a moment, the impasse of the one-god Universe

    He is all-knowing and all-powerful.

    He can't go anywhere since He is already everywhere.

    He can't do anything since the act of doing presupposes

    opposition.

    His universe is irrevocably thermodynamic having no

    friction by definition. So, He has to create friction:

    War, Fear, Sickness, Death,

    To keep his dying show on the road.

    Sooner or later, "Look boss we don't have enough energy

    left to fry an elderly woman in a flea bag hotel bar."

    "Well, we'll have to start faking it."

    Joe looks after him sourly and mixes a bicarbonated

    soda. "Sure, start faking it. Sure, and leave the

    details to Joe."

    ... link

  28. gnarlymarley

    Ummmm, doesn't fake news already fall under the sin of lying?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Ummmm, doesn't fake news already fall under the sin of lying?"

      Lies are really convincing when the person believes them themselves. To them it is "The Truth" without any apparent internal conflict over what they have ignored or twisted as the justification.

      The human mind is very good at doing that. It has been said that hypocrisy is the lubricating oil of society.

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