It’s a list. You love lists!
BY IAN MURPHY
There’s no shortage of insane religious nonsense, and documenting it all could take a lifetime, so here’s a list of six relatively obscure and totally crazy beliefs, for your edutainment. Enjoy, Infidels!
6) The Buraq
What’s handsome-faced, white, winged, bigger than a donkey, but smaller than a mule, and capable of flying Muhammad (PB&J) from Mecca to Jerusalem and back in a single night? No, not Ryan Seacrest; it’s the Buraq! As the insane story goes, Muhammad needed a seriously fast, comfortable and, apparently, anthropomorphic Pegasus-type beast to make his otherwise impossible “Night Journey.” So naturally, the angel Gabriel shows up and he’s all, “Dude, just take my Buraq.” At this, the Buraq starts sweating like Rush Limbaugh on coke, because it’s inexplicably ashamed — unlike Limbaugh, who should have plenty of reasons. The Prophet, mounted on the Buraq, and Gabe jet off to “the farthest Mosque,” which scholars interpret as the Temple Mount, and ol’ Muhammy does some prayin’. When he’s done, he again mounts the Buraq (perhaps the source of its shame?) and they fly up to 7th Heaven (not to be confused with the WB show of the same name) to chat with God and Moses. There, Moses is like, “You guys should pray only five times a day. You feel me, dawg?” And Muhammad was like, “Word.” After that, they fly back to Mecca quicker than lightning (that’s what al-Burāq means in Arabic) and just in time for the Buraq’s orthodontist appointment! OK, I made up that last bit, so there’d be at least one plausible detail.
5) The Mormon Space-God Pyramid Scheme
Some fronts of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ war on reason have been much discussed, like its founder Joseph Smith’s magical Golden Tablets (which no one has ever seen), their practice of baptizing the dead or their belief that resurrected Jesus flew (Buraq?) to America to hang out with the Indians. (Weird that once the Puritans got here, the natives had forgotten about all that “Jesus Guy” and needed to be converted.) But less attention has been given to two of the Mormons’ most insane beliefs. 1) They believe God lives in space. Yes, you read that right. Motherfucking space. The planet Kolob, first mentioned in the Book of Abraham and later made part of the official LDS doctrine, is where God eats, sleeps, plays Xbox and — one would imagine — receives his mail. 2) The goal of every good Mormon isn’t to simply get into the heaven, but to gain access to the coolest heaven, known as the “Celestial Kingdom,” where they themselves will become Gods. That’s right. Motherfucking Gods. Meaning, they get to create their own universes, stars, planets and people. I’m not entirely certain how, but this must explain the behavior of Glenn Beck.
4) J-Dub Heaven: wicked exclusive!
“Sorry, Serena, you’re not on the list.”
The Jehovah’s Witnesses (J-Dubs) are into some twisted shit: refusing blood transfusions at risk of death, denying evolution, ignoring holidays, bothering you at your house and making a sincere effort to, at least temporarily, warp the minds of every black celebrity in America (George Benson, Prince, Serena & Venus Williams, Sherri Shepherd, the late Michael Jackson and 90% of all known Wayans siblings just to name a few!). The most hilarious aspect of their incessant proselytizing is that according to the J-Dubs, out of everyone who’s ever lived only 144,000 very “special” people will get into heaven. J-Dubs claim over 18 million members worldwide, so if my math is accurate — let’s see, carry the crazy — fewer than 1% of these fools are getting into Jehovah’s bad-ass nightclub in the sky. And yet, they’re still trying to convert everyone they can before Armageddon, which they say is probably going to happen next Tuesday at 3 pm.
3) The Mad Eugenicist of the Nation of Islam
While we normally associate religious race-hate with Cracker-Ass-Mormons and the like, incredibly stupid and racist mythology isn’t solely of pasty provenance. Enter Yakub. According to the Nation of Islam founder and savior figure Wallace Fard Muhammad, Yakub, who lived 6,600 years ago, first devised a plan to create a new race of people while playing with magnets as a child. (Kids do the darnedest things.) Carrying this odd ambition into adulthood, he devoured all the knowledge Mecca’s community colleges had to offer, and then brought exactly 59,999 followers to the island of Patmos to bring his twisted childhood dream to fruition, where he ruled over them like a Black Robot Hitler on crack. Over the next 200 years, he bred his followers as one would dogs, killing the black babies until he created a race of brown people. Not satisfied, he selectively sexed and slaughtered, for another 600 years, until he finally created a race of “white devils,” who would rule earth until 1914 with their general wickedness and deception. So Yakub was at least 818 years-old. That makes sense, but why, you may ask, did he want to create a race of pale oppressors? I presume it’s a black thing, like Tussin.
[Nation of Islam insanity supplemental: Fard's successor Elijah Muhammad told of the "Mother Plane," an enormous UFO-like mini-planet built in Japan by the "Original scientists" -- at the low, low cost of $15 billion in gold -- to construct mountains on the earth -- you know, to balance it out or whatever.]
This list just wouldn’t be complete without a shout-out to L. Ron Hubbard, a terrible sci-fi writer and incorrigible conman.
1) The Sewer-Dwelling Aborted-Fetus Army of Doom!
What? You’re unfamiliar with the wonderful teachings of convicted child molester Dwight York? He may be currently serving a 135 year prison sentence, but his Afrocentric, paranoid schizophrenic brand of Islam known as Nuwaubianism, somehow, lives on. Started as a Black Muslim group in the ’70s, “Factology,” as it’s sometimes hilariously called, is a mash-up of some of the most impressively crazy, racist and mindbogglingly kooky theology to ever exist. Above and beyond their creation myth, theory of racial origins and obligatory UFO nonsense are their odd beliefs about babies. According to the literature, each person is conceived as a twin but sometimes the other twin dies; you should bury the afterbirth, so Satan can’t use it to make an evil duplicate of the child (you know, because Satan has no access to shovels); and last but not least, sometimes a fetus will survive its abortion and take to living in the sewers, where they are being trained to conquer the world, naturally. Actually, from their belief that an ancient meteorite impact caused us to lose our inherent ambidexterity to the claim that all humans have seven clones, which are linked unconsciously, every bit of “Factology” is absolutely bonkers. And that’s why I believe it’s the one true faith.
[Dishonorable mentions: Bumba, the central African deity who puked up the universe and the Falun Gong founder Li Hongzhi's belief that everyone has a "small fluorescent screen like a television" in their foreheads, which can be used for total recall. Those, and, you know, every other religious belief in existence.]