Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

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MormonYoYoMan
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by MormonYoYoMan »

Metal, I've used (not just with RPG fussbudgets) the response that if they think the Devil is more powerful than Heavenly Father and/or Jesus Christ, then of course they'll believe that just examining the evidence (i.e. - "read the book" to paraphrase a shamed politician) will overpower the Holy Ghost. Don't know if it would work for you; it doesn't always work for me. I'm way too much of an "in your face" type of person, and am trying to repent and change that trait.
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TheMetal1
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by TheMetal1 »

Yo,

Yeah good point. I'm all for letting one be lead by the Holy Spirit, but I do realize its different for each person. I did tell him to test the spirit for himself and see the fruit of it. Which as I've pointed out was community, friendships, etc. and when you get down to it - love.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by gideon_thorne »

I just wanna hunt orcs. :)
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by MormonYoYoMan »

Oddly (?) the thing which "convinced" so many people back in the 70s that RPGs were evil, was the obscene language used among gamers - especially male gamers. This hurt the image more than the T&A illustrations did, which surprised me. I guess when one projects a hostile image, one assumes hostility. Buncha knuckleheads advertising they preferred evil (characters, book covers, plots) didn't help. For instance, I had little trouble, in a hobby shop I assisted managed, getting anti-gamers to try an RPG by selling them - of all things - Call of cthulhu...because I could instantly show it as Good vs evil and faith vs selfishness.
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by TheMetal1 »

gideon_thorne wrote:I just wanna hunt orcs. :)
+1

I'd hazard to guess this is what most of want to do anyway. We're not going into the hobby thinking about increasing math skills, or developing community or love. Just, yeah, it's a place to hunt orcs, kill the monsters and take their stuff. That's why I like Munchkin so much!

Of course another way of sharing the love of RPGs with charismatic-pentecostal types is mentioning that the term "Orc" arguably came from the the old English word for demon and since Deliverance ministry/exorcisms is something they can relate to saying you're hunting demons in your game is a good starting point.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by gideon_thorne »

TheMetal1 wrote:
gideon_thorne wrote:I just wanna hunt orcs. :)
+1

I'd hazard to guess this is what most of want to do anyway. We're not going into the hobby thinking about increasing math skills, or developing community or love. Just, yeah, it's a place to hunt orcs, kill the monsters and take their stuff. That's why I like Munchkin so much! .
Another little anecdote. I was, once upon a time, interested in going into comics. So thats pretty much how I taught myself to draw in those early years, from Stan Lee's How to Draw Comics book. Course, round about the 80's the D&D boxed sets with the Elmore art came out. Pretty much near about the same time I had a one on one conversation with Stan Lee at the San Diego Comic Con (before you had to wade through armies of security). Now, he talked about the repetitive nature of comic art. Same characters over and over again, and needing to be done quickly. But then I saw Larry's stuff on the boxed sets, so my interest in comics started to slide in another direction. Course, Stan Lee put it rather pointedly. If you can draw quickly, and repetitiously, go into comics. If you like to work on a single picture go into illustration.

In short, imaginative play from basic D&D, and inspiration from my friend Larry Elmore, got me into this line of work instead of comics. Not sure whether the world is better off or not? But here we are. :)
"The accumulated filth of all their sex and murder will foam up about their waists and all the whores and politicians will look up and shout, 'Save us!' And I'll look down, and whisper 'No.' " ~Rorschach

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by tylermo »

Peter, I remember you telling me the "How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way/Stan Lee story at DieCon, GenCon, or Archon. Not sure which, but it's nice to hear it told again.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by redwullf »

gideon_thorne wrote:I just wanna hunt orcs. :)
NOW you're talking. :)
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"The worthy GM never purposely kills players' PCs. He presents opportunities
for the rash and unthinking players to do that all on their own.” -- E. G. G.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by AGNKim »

I remember that one night when I pretended to be an Elf and wound up killing a family of five while screaming, "In the name of Satan!" at their dog as I ate their flesh.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by Breakdaddy »

BLOOP!

PS- Yeah, that just happened
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

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AGNKim wrote:I remember that one night when I pretended to be an Elf and wound up killing a family of five while screaming, "In the name of Satan!" at their dog as I ate their flesh.
Well, you *ARE* a Union Man (tm) now, brother, so get used to doing things for the forces of darkness. ;)
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by Andred of Albans »

Well, I am not a Christian but I thought I'd weigh in on this anyway. :ugeek:

I am an orthodox Jew - and a chasid (a path of Judaism that accepts mysticism) - so I believe in angels (both good and evil), G-d, right and wrong and all that supernatural stuff. I do believe everything we do - even our hobbies - should reflect our core moral beliefs.

Yes, I have read the scripture in it's original language and I am well aware of Ex 22:18 מכשפה לא תחיה׃ which is often translated as "thou shalt not suffer a witch to live". However, מכשפה (m'khashepah) which describes the person who should be killed comes from the root word מַרעִיל (maril) poisoner (the demoness Marilith's name means "night poisoner"). It can be argued that this proscription applies only to those occultists who work with poison. A witch, in the Jewish canon, means a woman who uses spoken spells to harm others - e.g. causing their death or loss of property. Clearly "evil sorceress" or "woman who does evil magic" would be the most accurate phrases in today's English usage for this verse. So it should read " Thou Shalt Not Suffer a Woman who does evil magic to Live" or "Thou Shalt Not Suffer an Evil Sorceress to Live"

Throughout the Torah we are warned to avoid wizards, mediums, those with familiar spirits and soothsayers. A wizard as the scripture defines the term and a wizard as presented in fantasy fiction and RPGs are two different animals. A wizard is a wonder worker who worships idols - a pagan priest who can work "miracles". In most FRPGs, a wizard is more like a technologist. Someone who understands the basic physical laws of the universe on a deeper level than most people and can manipulate them to achieve his desired results. A D&D or C&C wizard is not calling on heathen gods or evil spirits but manipulating the basic cosmic forces using repeatable and human controlled methods that require no divine intervention.

Speaking with the dead, propriating spirits and interpreting omens were pagan religious practices and were forbidden to Jews but one was obligated to listen to a prophet of G-d. In a FRPG, these persons would be priests (clerics) of evil deities or devils/demons.

The Rambam (Rabbi Moses ben Maimon or Maimonides) rejected the idea that magic is even possible. He held that wizards, mediums, soothsayers, etc. were delusional people of questionable sanity and one should avoid them for one's own safety. A witch was a dabbler in poisons and pagan ideology and should not be tolerated because of the physical threat (poisons) that she posed - not her "magic".

Jack Chick has a theology of Christian = Good, non-Christian = Evil. So in Jack's little world, Jews are by definition evil (so if you are a devotee of Mr. Chick's brand of religion I suppose you could write me off right now). This means Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David, Solomon, Samson, Deborah, and all of the Prophets were evil because they were not Christians. If they weren't evil then they were "saved" without Christ which sort of defeats the whole purpose of Mr. Chick's evangelism. Moreover, in Mr. Chick's world, the Nazis are in heaven (Christian = Good) while their victims are in hell (Jew = Evil) so I am understandably reluctant to accept his views on fantasy gaming. :roll:

Now before you send me hate mail, I am NOT suggesting Mr. Chick represents the Christian mainstream or even the mainstream of the Evangelical movement - I am aware he does not and I have an excellent relationship with my friends in the Baptist and non-denominational Christian churches with whom I have worked on issues of mutual concern. I am most certainly NOT bashing Christians, though I don't share their religious viewpoint, I do respect many of them and have no animus against them. :)

Mr. Chick presumes that FRPG groups are tightknit (fair play, many are) and if one's character dies one is expelled from the group (ridiculous, one just rolls up a new character and rejoins play at a plausible point in the campaign). He also presumes one can actually cast the spells from D&D in the real world. I am a student of world religion and this includes "magic" and "witchcraft". Most "spells" in real world occultism are long, drawn out rituals that require extensive preparation and achieve rather subtle results (e.g. one "finds" treasure, wins a lawsuit, gains influence, etc.). D&D spells are quick, easy to do and have dramatic results (e.g. a fireball toasts the orcs, a magic missile takes out the hobgoblin shaman, a character can fly over a chasm, etc.) I would very much like to see someone start a campfire at the next BBQ by saying, "okay, I cast a fireball at the log in the fire pit" :lol:
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by MormonYoYoMan »

Andred (or whatever name you prefer) this was such a reasoned, intelligent, well-researched, and entertaining post that I've immediately added your C&C and Trek blogs to my daily reads. (And it'll take me forever to catch up from Day One to current entries!)

When I started looking into the history and etymology of the scriptures, I was rather surprised to find how differently they were interpreted in English - and how differently they're interpreted and interpolated from even previous English translations. That so many, especially the correspondences in Greek, have had much information (and entire books) dropped during transcriptions was no surprise - but the many times that a word was transcribed differently in different hand transcriptions was surprising! This may be why keeping the Torah (and much of the Talmud? Still haven't studied that as much as I want.) is/was continually transcribed in Hebrew, being a VERY concise written language. (Even without punctuation or vowels in the earlier forms.) Of course, much of this is speculation on my part.

As to how this relates to RPGs in general and C&C in particular, I'm fascinated by how much of our respective gameworlds' residents may or may not have corrupted understanding of who and what they actually are, what gods there are or aren't, and what might or might not be their destinies. As real life's scriptures have been, oh so often, mistranslated or lost, how does religion work in a world where magic works and priests use their powers in spectacular ways. These are some of the things with which I built my FRPG world and my Traveller universe, each of which I'm rebuilding and restoring again.

Thank you for one of the most fascinating articles I've read in months, if not years. This is getting printed and added to my journal!
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by tylermo »

Andred, I remember hearing something about the "poisoner" translation. I was mistakenly thinking the word was "chasaph" or poisoner. I picked up on that when a member of Wicca was talking about the original Hebrew vs. the KJV. It's been too long ago. Either way, you've really added to the discussion of the way things were occasionally over 20 years ago.

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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

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MormonYoYoMan wrote: As to how this relates to RPGs in general and C&C in particular, I'm fascinated by how much of our respective gameworlds' residents may or may not have corrupted understanding of who and what they actually are, what gods there are or aren't, and what might or might not be their destinies. As real life's scriptures have been, oh so often, mistranslated or lost, how does religion work in a world where magic works and priests use their powers in spectacular ways.
Interesting take on it. There is a difference though. In C&C (D&D type games) the God can directly correct any "drift". An avatar can come down and present (while "deleting" offending priests) the correct info....
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Re: Defense of The Defense of The Chick Tract

Post by TheMetal1 »

Andred of Albans wrote:I would very much like to see someone start a campfire at the next BBQ by saying, "okay, I cast a fireball at the log in the fire pit" :lol:
Yeah some real world Elijah action would be pretty cool to see. :)
Andred of Albans wrote:Most "spells" in real world occultism are long, drawn out rituals that require extensive preparation and achieve rather subtle results (e.g. one "finds" treasure, wins a lawsuit, gains influence, etc.). D&D spells are quick, easy to do and have dramatic results (e.g. a fireball toasts the orcs, a magic missile takes out the hobgoblin shaman, a character can fly over a chasm, etc.)
Yeah it is rather interesting about that (at least in my passing familiarity with it), it seems that real world occultism magic matches the Conan/sword & sorcery type magic at least in terms of ritual and length. In From a scripture perspective, one example that stands out is the King of Moab in 2 Kings. He's getting is destroyed by the Israelite army, and as a last ditch effort, sacrifices his oldest son - as a burnt offering. This sacrifice causes a great wrath to come against Israel.

Exodus shows us Pharaoh's magician matching some of Moses supernatural stuff (the sticks to snakes and the water into blood), which comes across like D&D spells - quick, easy to do and dramatic results. Though I don't know if it was a rapidly accomplished as Moses demonstrated. But it appears to be just as rapid, and was enough for Pharaoh to scoff at Moses.

I haven't played that much D&D 4e, but it seems like they wanted to bring in a Sword & Sorcery element with the rituals which took longer and seemed to be used as more of a cut scene type thing.

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