Posts Tagged ‘Fred Woodworth’


The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has a report that shows yet again that some people will buy anything. The ABC reports that the College of Universal Medicine (COUM) was forced by an Australian court, which termed the group an “exploitative cult,” to return $600,000 to donors.

The ABC notes: “The COUM promotes the teachings of Universal Medicine’s (UM) multi-millionaire founder Serge Benhayon — a former bankrupt tennis coach who claims to be Leonardo Da Vinci reincarnated.”

With qualifications like that, how could anyone not donate?

This all brings to mind a remark Fred Woodworth made ages ago about religious believers (slightly paraphrased here): “If someone founded a religion that required believers to crawl across broken glass on their stomachs with their flies open, and consume dog shit as sacrament, people would rush to join up.”


“How the aliens must gape in horror at our civilization, if they are out there! Like the person who has AIDS, humanity itself lacks the immune-system response to all that is monstrously devoid of meaning and logic . . . You could start a religion that proclaimed Jim Jones as Christ, and demand as sacrament that every tenth member consume dogshit laced with strychnine — people would rush to join up.”

–Fred Woodworth, in Black Star, Spring 1987


“Renting, the collection of rents, and the relations of landlords and tenants are, respectively, among the most humiliating, vicious and deplorable interactions that the human race, to its sorrow, has devised.

“For the landlord, all healthy striving has ceased; like a sluggish python digesting a deer, the propertied class swells and snores, its pudgy thumbs hooked in rolls of foul-smelling, unwashed fat. Unearned income breeds complacency; complacency breeds mental stultification; and this last evokes greed for more unearned income.

“Landlords have no rights—they forfeit them by engaging in a criminal enterprise, for which seizure of dwellings by those who actually live in them, and complete discontinuance of paying of ‘rents,’ are the only remedies.”

—Fred Woodworth, Rent: An Injustice


“Let’s get a certain point straight here once and for all, shall we? Yes you can, under many circumstances, prove a negative. You can do it when definitions are tight enough and when conditions are specific enough. For instance, anyone reading this magazine can prove instantly that the Declaration of Independence is not printed on page 13 of this issue. How? They turn to page 13 and look. It’s when assertions become more and more general that they become more and more difficult to disprove. If somebody says that Jesus Christ is standing on the corner of Speedway and Alvernon dispensing tea in paper cups, all you have to do to prove it’s not so is to go there and check . . . If somebody says that Jesus Christ is dispensing tea on an unnamed street corner in this city, you have a larger number of places you have to look before the idea percolates down through your little mind that, gosh, it may not be so after all.

“If some whacko bellows that Jesus Christ is somewhere in the entire universe, can you prove that he isn’t? Strictly speaking, no. On the other hand, you don’t have to; as specificity departs, a claim becomes more and more extraordinary, and as it does so another philosophical rule takes hold, which is that extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

“Lacking that extraordinary proof, we can maintain that there is no such god as the religionists claim.”

–Fred Woodworth (publisher of The Match!), American Atheist, February 1984


“How the aliens must gape in horror at our civilization, if they are out there! Like the person who has AIDS, humanity itself lacks the immune-system response to all that is monstrously devoid of meaning and logic … You could start a religion that proclaimed Jim Jones as Christ, and demand as sacrament that every tenth member consume dogshit laced with strychnine–people would rush to join up.”

–Fred Woodworth, in Black Star, Spring 1987