Don't even think about it
Cross-posted from Tom Toles's new blog.
There's an old conundrum about a treasure buried in a field. But the rule is that the treasure will only be there if you don't think about a white horse while you're digging. Nobody gets the treasure. That story reminds me of my Catholic education, which, to oversimplify just a bit, was that you could get to heaven as long as you didn't think about sex.
Now, what kind of organization would come up with a pernicious puzzler like that to fill young minds with? An organization with a problem about sex. How big a problem? Well, now we know. I don't know if the origin of the problem has anything to do with the Church's rule about celibacy. I do have an opinion (hint: duh), but clearly there was a problem about inspecting the eyes of others for a mote of dust.
Now the question is how does the Church right these wrongs and re-establish its credibility? The traditional measures -- admitting the problem and punishing the wrongdoers -- are all well known, and have been and will continue to be avoided, as they usually are. Beyond that is the question of what kind of conceptual damage this outstandingly vile behavior does to an organization that purports to represent God's grace and guidance. People can answer that question for themselves.
My own plan for getting to heaven is to think as little as possible about organized religion.
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