As expected, folks are pissed by the new ads from Antonio Federici, the world’s most blasphemous ice cream. From Campaign Live:
One ad created in-house shows a pregnant nun eating from a pot of Antonio Federici Gelato Italiano under the strapline “Immaculately conceived”.
Another ad shows two male priests apparently about to kiss, with the strapline “We believe in salvation”.
The print ads appeared in women’s weeklies Grazia, Look and The Lady, but were investigated by the advertising watchdog after it received a number of complaints about them.
Antonio Federici said the idea of “conception” represented the development of their ice cream, and its decision to use religious imagery stemmed from its strong feelings towards their product – the text also read “Ice cream is our religion”.
The Lady later said it regretted the offence that had been caused to its readers and said it would not publish the ad or anything similar to it in future.
The ASA told Antonio Federici that is was not to repeat the ads in their current form, as it was likely to be seen as distortion and mockery of the beliefs of Roman Catholics.
Swedish singer and self-appointed guru (Thomas) Di Leva is one of the oddest pop phenomenons I’ve encountered in quite awhile. Apparently he’s been a big star in Sweden for the past 30 years and yet I’d never heard of him. I pride myself on knowing a shitload about rock and roll and spiritual materialism, but somehow Di Leva, who embodies some of the best of the worst in both music and new age mumbo jumbo, has flown below my cultural radar all these years.
A cross between David Bowie, Donovan, Meher Baba and Barbra Streisand, Di Leva has released 19 albums, has dozens of videos on Youtube and a trippy dippy website devoted to his mystical teachings. His spiritual organization is called Spaceflower, which he describes with typical new age vagueness:
We are all Spaceflowers with roots in Eternity. Striving to consciously and blissfully flow through the supreme infinite reality. We are all one with the eternal now forever.
And Di Leva humbly describes himself as…
One of the greatest spiritual teachers and music artists in his home country Sweden. With Spaceflowers he is now taking his vision, presence and action globally.
Whether or not he succeeds in his quest to raise the planet’s consciousness or not is yet to be seen, but for now we have glimmerings of something Divine (as in Pink Flamingos) in his music videos and live performances. As much as I’m tempted to write this guy off, I find him actually quite compelling. From his obvious David Bowie vocal influence, new wave synth beats and Summer Of Love lyrics , Di Leva is not particularly original and, yet, he is. He’s a cosmic rip-off artist that manages the trick of making you almost believe in something totally artificial. But, I like artifice and Di Leva is thoroughly entertaining in his own weird, spacey, Swamidelic way. He’s a flower child gone to seed, Jesus in day-glo Laura Ashley drag or Dreamgirl mu mu. An Aquarian Age Adam Ant. Meher Abba.
Visit Di Leva’s Spaceflowers website and for a mere $9.00 you can receive a cosmic transmission via telephone from the Guru himself. He accepts Paypal.
Update 9/16: since posting this last night, the spaceflower.net website has been taken down for ‘construction’. I wonder why? Was it something I said?
A post from Dan Amira on New York magazine’s blog about Delaware’s Republican Senatorial no-hoper, Christine O’Donnell, quotes from a transcript of a, uh, “debate” over evolution between the dotty, anti-masturbation church lady and an evolutionary biologist. The Tea party favorite, who has been accused of living off campaign donations by her former campaign manager, really tells him, doesn’t she?
CHRISTINE O’DONNELL: Well, creationism, in essence, is believing that the world began as the Bible in Genesis says, that God created the Earth in six days, six 24-hour periods. And there is just as much, if not more, evidence supporting that.
No evidnece at all, Christine. Those dinosaur fossils were put here by God just to fuck with people, right?
And here’s what she said about not lying to Nazis if they wanted to know where the Jews were hiding on a Politically Incorrect appearance in the late 90s:
CHRISTINE O’DONNELL: A lie, whether it be a lie or an exaggeration, is disrespect to whoever you’re exaggerating or lying to, because it’s not respecting reality.
BILL MAHER: Quite the opposite, it can be respect.
EDDIE IZZARD: What if someone comes to you in the middle of the Second World War and says, ‘do you have any Jewish people in your house?’ and you do have them. That would be a lie. That would be disrespectful to Hitler.
CHRISTINE O’DONNELL: I believe if I were in that situation, God would provide a way to do the right thing righteously. I believe that!
And for a little perspective, here’s Eddie Izzard, her fellow guest on Politically Incorrect, on Creationists, dinosaurs and Jesus:
O’Donnell So Fervently Pro-Truth That She Wouldn’t Lie To Nazis Asking If She Were Hiding Jews In Her Home (Think Progress)
Enter Jacob Isom, a resident of Amarillo, TX. The 23-year-old skateboarder happend to be nearby when he heard somebody mention burning a copy of the Quran. Apparently that didn’t seem too righteous to Jacob, who snatched away the holy book—already doused in a flammable liquid—and told the agitator, “Dude, you have no Quran!” before running off.
The Amarillo Globe-News reports that Isom was wearing a t-shirt with the words, “I’m in Repent Amarillo No Joke” handwritten on the back and he accused David Grisham, from Christian fundamentalist group Repent Amarillo, of “trying to start Holy Wars.”
I’m surprised I did not hear about this earlier, because this sort of documentary is so totally up my alley. Nevertheless, this looks amazing. I’m going to request a screener so I can review it on DM. This looks unmissable. From the filmmakers’ website:
America’s 50-million strong Evangelical community is convinced that the world’s future is foretold in Biblical prophecy - from the Rapture to the Battle of Armageddon. This astonishing documentary explores their world - in their homes, at conferences, and on a wide-ranging tour of Israel. By interweaving Christian, Zionist, Jewish and critical perspectives along with telling archival materials, the filmmakers probe the politically powerful - and potentially explosive - alliance between Evangelical Christians and Israel…an alliance that may set the stage for what one prominent Evangelical leader calls “World War III.”
The film opens with portraits of three Evangelical families –James and Laura Bagg, a Connecticut couple who work as military jet-propulsion engineers, Tony and Devonna Edwards in McAlester, Oklahoma, and Dr. H. Wayne House in Salem, Oregon—all certain that upon Christ’s Second Coming they will be “raptured” or lifted into the skies to join Christ while the rest of humanity suffers for seven years during “The Tribulation.” The Edwards’ daughters, in particular, struggle with their own future. If they are raptured soon, how will they ever marry, or have children of their own? [RM note: How sick and twisted is it to inflict this kind of “thinking” on children? Horrifying to contemplate what emotionally destructive superstition like this can do to people’s lives. But, of course, the invisible man in the kingdom in the sky said it in the magic book, so therefore it must be true.]
Despite their very different lives and locations, all three families find the modern world laden with symbolism that suggests the End Times are at hand, and they proclaim the immense importance of Israel, where the battle of Armageddon will leave the earth ravaged, before Christ creates a new and perfect world.
The film then follows Wayne House and fellow minister Robert Dean as they lead a Christian Study Tour group to Israel—among the tens of thousands of Evangelicals who pour into the Holy Land each year. As Wayne and Robert baptize their entourage in the River Jordon, sing the US national anthem on the Sea of Galilee, proclaim love for Israel, and describe how the Dome of the Rock, one of the holiest sites in Islam, must be destroyed in order for Jesus to return, a revealing and controversial relationship between Christian Evangelicals, Jews, and Muslims emerges.
Finally, we follow Wayne House and Robert Dean to a massive gathering in Dallas, Texas, where Evangelicals debate, in highly sophisticated terms, the need to spread Biblical literalism to counter the dangerous effects of post-modernism. The climax of the conference comes as Pastor John Hagee, the enormously influential Texas Minister of an 18,000-member megachurch, declares, “World War III has started.”
Since tattooed Todd has been to Heaven several times and all, why can’t his new wife be a prophet too? Seen here, Jessa Bentley describes a prophetic wacky dream she had starring Oral Roberts, a golden lion and a dancing elephant. Watch in pain as she unconvincingly describes this foolishness to the low IQ mouth-breathers in attendance—she clearly doesn’t even buy her own bullshit—then makes an extremely poor, almost air-guitarish attempt at “speaking in tongues.” This is quite something to see.
Todd Bentley, you have to hand it to him, has really found a niche for himself and his, uh, “ministry”: People stupider than he is!
Here’s the caption from YouTube. Fucking hilarious:
Todd Bentley discusses the connection between God’s Glory and a release of wealth and finances in the Scripture. It’s interesting to note that almost every time the Glory of God falls on the God’s people in the Bible, there is a simultaneous release of wealth and finance.
As one wag said: “The Devil might wear Prada, but he’s definitely driving a Bentley.”
There looks to be an interesting film screening coming up this weekend in Austin, TX. A lesbian couple went “undercover” as a man and wife at a local evangelical church and their documentary, Faith of the Abomination is the result. The screening at the South Lamar Alamo Drafthouse as part of the Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival on Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
Their mission was to go undercover with Melton posing as a man to see if the couple would be treated differently as a heterosexual couple in ministry. They aimed to stay 6 months. It was successful, Nguyen said. “We loved them and they loved us,” she said. “The leadership took us in right away. They told us secrets they hadn’t revealed to their board of directors. Spiritually, we were able to connect with them because they didn’t have the stumbling block of what we looked like and what our spirits were. We became close with them, they took us out for private luncheons. We ministered in their church. It was the spirit in us that they connected to, not the packages.”
The couple became a part of the church for about four months, they said. They decided that they would reveal who they were and told the congregation that they were going back to Vietnam. “We told people how much we loved them and thanked them for their love,” Nguyen said. “We told them that we were two lesbian ministers of God, and the bodyguards started to rush us and the pastor called them off. He knew cameras were on him. I told him, ‘God is Love, we are not abominations. God created me, God loves my people. We’re here for a reason.’”
As scared as they were about their revelation, they felt like it was necessary to come out publicly so that the church would know what had happened to them and who they really were. That was September 3, 2006. Their emails and phone calls to the church have not been returned, they say. They hope one day to move back to Austin; perhaps after the premiere of the film here on Sunday.