Is a chocolate Jesus blasphemous?

I honestly don’t know – and I’m really in no position to judge. What do you think?

Read all about it here, at The Moderate Voice (a highly recommended blog).

17 thoughts on “Is a chocolate Jesus blasphemous?

  1. If it was white chocolate that would be one thing. But dark chocolate makes people think Jesus was non-white and non-Texan. That’s blasphemous.

  2. If the use of food as a medium for representing the body of Christ is offensive, then what’s the deal with communion?

  3. Holy Crap! No wonder the kids in this country are screwed up!Jesus H. Christ people – It is a chocolate jesus! How anyone can get so deep on a chocolate jesus is lunacy!I am Italian and was raised strict Roman Catholic – show me a chocolate Jesus, watch how fast I eat it. Uhmmm – Chocolate!By time time you guys get done debating this, it will be no big deal as there would not be a chocolate Jesus – I ate it!

  4. Interesting. Well, I’ll speculate like this:Only Orthodox Jews, usually ultra-, refuse to reproduce physical images of humans. I’ve written before about how my relatives in Israel had to needlepoint over two tiny specs that were two people in an enormous pastoral needlepoint hanging because their rebbe said they had to.But otherwise, anything pretty much goes. So, the idea is a bit hard for me. I mean, weren’t there some other far more offensive ones of Jesus somewhere inside an art museum, with blood or feces or something a few years ago – maybe that was the Madonna. Now that was ill to me. I’m not sure I agree with looking to the intent of the artist, I think more in terms of those who’ll view it.Was it dark or milk?

  5. Paul – I like your perspective on this a lot. It reminds me of the Franciscan father I had at Georgetown for Sociology 101, among other classes, Father Chris Johnson. He was a little, irreverent guy and during one class about symbols, he ripped off his collar and stomped on it up and down. Being Jewish and a sophomore, I almost fell off my chair. I went up to him after class to tell him how shocked I was and I wanted to know if he could really do that with out impugnity. He just laughed. He was a very beloved professor at GU for over 20 years.

  6. Chocolate Jesus — and most especially chocolate, nude, anotomically detailed Jesus — mixes the sacred and the profane in a way that would offend fundamentalists and probably even some moderate Christians. Beyond that, you have to look at what statement the artist is making and, according to news reports, the artist isn’t doing much more than pretending to be shocked shocked that anyone would take offense. Christians don’t consider depictions of Jesus per se blasphemous, unlike Muslims and Mohammed. Blasphemy or heresy is usually more a matter of doctrine. As a UU I’m a heretic from way back.

  7. Jill: I’m a Christian, as I’ve probably indicated before. While I am deeply connected to my faith, I won’t claim the word ‘devout’ because the wide range of connotations attached to the word make it all but useless as a descriptor.My take on being a Christian is that my job is to act with charity and compassion, and to offer the Gospel in both words and actions, but not force it. While there have certainly been persecutions committed in the name of Christ, the persecutors were not Christians in my opinion.I support the notion of free speech and a free press, with some boundaries as set by law and tested in the courts. In that regard, one can make a chocolate Jesus and display it in all its anatomical glory in the appropriate setting without violating my principles. While I suspect neither of us would want to see that particular piece of scupture in a public school, a public art gallery is okay. Maybe a “Warning: the sculpture around the corner may not be suitable for small children” is appropriate.The question of blastphemy is something different. I had a college religion professor who was known to drop a ‘motherf…’ into his lectures on occasion. This was at a religious (albeit very liberal) college no less. When a student called him on it, his answer was that he thought profanity is what you did, not what you said. I’m not sure it’s quite that simple, but I’m closer to his position than one of cutting out the tongue of a blastphemer.At some times, in some places, there exists societies which can figure out how to live together in the presence of conflicting belief systems. The Romans didn’t really care all that much if conquered peoples retained their religion as long as the religion didn’t get in the way of order and commerce. Pontius Pilot authorized the execution of Jesus to protect civil order. It was the local religious leaders who demanded the execution of one of their own.Sadly, societies seem to tend to break up into factions along religious lines and ulimately go to war. At the end of the day, the motivator is almost always money and power, not theology. As the splintering continues, the outcome will be as it always has been — threatening the use of violence, with occasional real demonstrations, is the best survival strategy.So here’s my blastphemous statement: I think Jesus might have actually enjoyed John Lennon’s “Imagine.” Jesus never advocated any particular formal religion. His message was simple: “Love God, love your neighbor.” That’s pretty much what Lennon echoed.PL

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