Health Hazards of Catholicism

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Avoiding smokers is not enough. If you're worried about the dangers posed by airborne combustion products, you should stay out of church too.

[Thanks to the Reason Foundation's Skaidra Smith-Heisters for the link.]

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  1. You think that’s bad? Our rituals involve alcohol and high-carb food!

  2. too bad for the health nazis that some studies have shown that religious people who regularly attend church typically live several years longer than people who dont. so just imagine how much longer they would live sans incense induced particulate air matter

  3. That incense was awful stuff. As an alter boy many years ago, I recall nearly passing out many times holding a censer full of noxious burning crap while my eyes watered and burned and I struggled to breathe. Took a couple swigs of wine to bring me to.

  4. Once again progress is redefined as decline. The nineteenth century tradition of operagoers swooning and passing out during shows of Tristan & Isolde was actually a result of gas- and candle-lighting: The air quality was so bad that being exposed to it over a long performance could literally result in instant death. Today we’re down to a few candles and incense stick in a church with electrical lighting, but we complain even more.

    Also, there’s not a lot of incense left in the contemporary RC church. For the real stink of Jesus you’ve got to go with the Orthodox.

  5. too bad for the health nazis that some studies have shown that religious people who regularly attend church typically live several years longer than people who dont.

    Maybe it just feels several years longer having to sit through church services…

  6. We didn’t have incense in my childhood church but the blood of Christ was to die for.

  7. I was never a cigarette smoker, but I was an altar boy. From about age 11-13 I served at funerals on weekdays and weddings on the weekends, and once I was senior enough, I was often the thurifer. If I developed respiratory problems, should I sue the Rockville Centre diocese? I’d feel crummy about that, seeing as how I was able to buy a new Schwinn and keep myself in comics and egg cremes from all the tips I raked in. [It helps when your seminarian brother is head of the altar boys, and can always depend on you to show up on short notice. 🙂 ]

    More incense worrying regarding non-Christian temples.

    Kevin

  8. Even brief exposure to contaminated air during a religious service could be harmful to some people

    Sheesh, is everyone getting their news from The Onion now?

  9. Tim- being exposed to it over a long performance could literally result in instant death.
    How long does it take to die instantly?

  10. One long horrifying instant.

    Not to be confused with “incense death,” which is what we face in church today. If they still used incense, which, as Tim pointed out, they hardly ever do.

  11. Aha! I thought that thoreau PhD would comment on this thread cuz I know that he’s a serious Catholic, and his is the first comment.

    None of the religious significance would be lost if they went sans incense and used electric candles, would it?

    As Durk and Sandy said a long time ago in Life Extension; “Where there’s smoke there’s aging.” If I ever start using pot again (during the last, like 27 yrs., I’ve used it twice. Before that, I used it lots), I’m gonna eat it in oatmeal cookies and brownies and stuff. Smoking anything is bad for you.

    A respectful non-believer

  12. I mean “8 outa the 10 of you”.

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