Jamaica is a lot like the US as far as religious demographics are concerned… well sort of. About 65% of the country is Christian and about 20% have no religious affiliation. America has about 80% Christian and 20% with no religious affiliation. So who makes up the additional 15% in Jamaica? Jews, Muslim, Rastafarians, and closeted Obeahs. That last one is really pissing off the Christians.
Obeah is basically folk magic and mysticism. It is similar to Voodoo and Santeria. The thing is that in Jamaica, it is illegal despite the freedom of religion that the country boasts. Apparently, two Jamaican politicians are pushing a new law that would decriminalize Obeah and Christian heads are starting to explode.
Don’t get me wrong, I think Obeah is just as ridiculous as Christianity. The key phrase there is “just as ridiculous” as in not more ridiculous and possibly slightly less ridiculous. The jury is still out there. But why do Christians really even care is some people want to practice some other religion? Well, Obeah deals with invoking spirits – some good and some evil. But many Christians in the country believe that all spirits – except the holy one, of course – are evil. Any conjuring of spirits must be the work of Satan.
Personally, I just don’t think they like the competition. I mean Jews and Muslim at least deal with the Abrahamic God. Buddhism doesn’t deal with any gods at all and Hinduism isn’t about conjuring their deities. Obeah shows prayers to be nothing more than magic spells and Obeah’s raw rituals point out the ridiculousness of the dressed up rituals of the Catholic Church. They are basically the same religion except that the Church has more money to spend on their bullshit. Christianity is merely the rich person’s Obeah.
With science, people go to the evidence to settle any conflicts that arise. The person with the stronger evidence wins. But in religion, where there is no evidence, there is no peaceful way to settle which is right – if any. As a result, religious believers are forced to settle conflicts through violence or the force of law. In Jamaica, like in the United States, Christians try to use the force of all to push their beliefs and to restrict the freedom of others to express their beliefs because God is too powerless to make his case on his own.
- Resurgence of Jamaican ‘Voodoo’ (bbc.co.uk)
- Jamaica may repeal anti-voodoo law (doubtfulnews.com)
- Dear Christians: Have You Heard The Harsh Reality? (skepticink.com)
- Theists Will Drown In A Lake Of Semen (skepticink.com)
- Life and Afterlife: The Meaning In It All (skepticink.com)
- Another Embarrassing Reza Aslan Interview (skepticink.com)