Friday, December 18, 2009

Needling Your Kids?

The good news is; the boy is recovering from surgery and will be all right as long as he avoids magnets. The bad news is that he's a two-year old whose step-father shoved between 30 and 50 "blessed" sewing needles into his body and only the 4 most life-threatening needles have been removed so far.

A news article from AP tells of a Brazilian man who shoved needles into the body of his stepson during a month-long series of rituals wherein the man's lover would enter a trance and then direct the insertion of the needles. The lover had supposedly had the needles blessed by a woman connected with the Afro-Brazilian religion of Candomble and told the step-father that these rituals would allow them to be together.

Maybe I'm just too cynical, but I can't imagine agreeing to any of this, no matter how good a lover this lover was. I mean, if my girlfriend came over, went into a trance and started giving me instructions, even if it was something like making pickle-loaf sandwiches, I'm pretty sure that would be the minute that she became an ex-girlfriend. She'd never get the chance to explain why she had a shopping bag full of needles.

Then, who could listen to a person, with or without an altered state of consciousness, give instructions to stick needles in a toddler, and it doesn't have to be a step-son, even if you found a stray 2 year old by the side of the road and brought him home, wouldn't you get a weird feeling that somehow that plan was flawed. Seriously, I'd have trouble sticking a needle in a toad from the back yard; visualizing a sharp needle in close proximity to a helpless little child sends my stomach into gymnastics.

The bumper sticker says something like; People who believe absurdities can be made to commit atrocities. Or as apostates of fundamentalism have said; when they believe their religious leaders, they follow orders without question, they don't have to analyze the instructions or feel any personal responsibility. They're just a tool of the religion. Those horrible Brazilians just took it to the next level.

A girlfriend in a trance isn't responsible for what she says. She's just a conduit for a (higher?) power. The step-father isn't responsible because he's just following orders and he's using "blessed" needles that have magical properties. The baby is the only rational one of the bunch. It just goes to show how much it can suck to be in the care of believers in absurdities, but on the other hand, it shows there are worse things than threatening children with an imaginary hell.

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