Fun and witty T-Shirts for Atheists, Agnostics, skeptics and anyone else who could face hellfire if there actually turns out to be a god

Fun and Witty T-Shirts for Atheists, Agnostics, skeptics and anyone else who would face hellfire if there actually is a god

The most interesting thing I’ve ever seen in a church

Ammonite in the marble floor of the Cathedral of Antequera, Spain

Ammonite in the marble floor of the Cathedral of Antequera, Spain

Yes, atheists do visit churches, in case you were wondering. Let’s face it, churches can be full of interesting stuff, much like you might expect an ancient Roman or Greek temple to be. And anyway, if you’re traveling around Spain, churches are probably the most numerous of all the monuments you can visit, which makes them rather hard to avoid. As you can see from this photo of the base of a column in the Cathedral of Antequera in Andalusia, there was much more than art on display this time.

This particular ammonite fossil had to make do with a pretty inconspicuous place on the floor, but it still got a lot of attention from parents pointing it out to their kids.

Thankfully, your average Catholic is open minded enough not to believe that the earth is 6000 years old, I thought. Then another thought occurred to me: how funny it would have been had that slab of marble found its way into a Creationist church! Oh sweet, sweet irony!

53 Responses to “The most interesting thing I’ve ever seen in a church”

  1. Chris Says:

    I can’t help but think of how rare this fossil actually is. Marble is metamorphosized limestone, which means that this is limestone that has been subjected to extreme heat and pressure causing a change in the crystalline structure of the rock. Usually this process destroys any trace of a fossil, so as I’ve already said, it is incredibly rare to not only see a fossil in marble, it’s even rarer to see one so well preserved.

  2. Norm Smith Says:

    You are technically correct about “marble” being a metamorphic rock and therefore unlikely to preserve fossils, but only as defined and used by geologists. The term is also very commonly applied by non-geologists for any limestone used in building construction or statues. I’m sure the ammonite is embedded in unmetamorphosed limestone, not marble.

  3. Kriss Says:

    That’s one very cool fossil!
    On another account, the Pope himself has actually said that Evolution probably happened and that it doesn’t contradict the bible so i don’t see why Christians get so upset about it.

  4. squidder Says:

    “how funny it would have been had that slab of marble found its way into a Creationist church?” Never, you are aware creationists are very good a culling any evidence that does not support their claim right? Well that or making up bat shit crazy fairy tales to support their side of the supposed “argument”. Nice fossil though :)

  5. Tom Says:

    Kriss, mostly because not all Christians follow the Pope’s word as their god’s word. I never met a Catholic who wanted to tell me I was defective because I was capable of grasping evolution.

  6. Aaron Says:

    Silly atheists…..Obviously God placed that fossil in the rock….this explains its existence.

  7. Marc Petersen Says:

    That really looks pretty cool, and the irony factor is certainly interesting. But – has it been documented that it really is an ammonite fossil? I mean, the pattern LOOKS like one to me, but I’ve seen a picture of Jesus in a cheese sandwich and his mother in the overspray of a sprinkler system on the side of an office building. Let’s be careful not to make the same mistake that religious fundamentalists always make: A random pattern suites my purpose, so it must be what I see in it.

  8. Kelly Phelan Says:

    Roman Catholicism grew out of the old mystery cults of the Mediterranean and Near East, so it is no real surprise to see this.

    Mollusc shells are a near perfect example of the Golden Proportion. The Golden Proportion, Fibonacci series or phi, appears throughout nature and is central to sacred geometry. The pyramids were built using phi. So were the Parthenon and gothic cathedrals. In fact, the “sacred geometry” of stained glass rose windows so often found in cathedrals derives from the Golden Proportion.

    In esoteric tradition, phi relates to the concepts of unity, the trinity and fecundity.

  9. Charly Says:

    This is very cool!

    I actually have a fossilized ammonite in a marble tile in my bathroom. My friend who did the tiling has been in the business for over 25 years and said that mine was the only one he has ever seen be so perfectly preserved. So you are correct about this being very rare in marble!!

  10. Theresa Says:

    Ok, I am Catholic and like Kriss says, it is completely possible for Creationism and Evolution to coexist (simply by acknowledging that God used evolution as the means of creating the world). Secondly, like Marc mentioned, I have doubts about whether this is an actual fossil, or just a pattern in the marble. (I have “seen” plenty of cool images in the random colors of my tiled floors) While it would be cool to be an ammonite, it seems unlikely…

  11. Nathan Says:

    The likelihood of this simply being a neat pattern is very slim. Almost as slim as finding this fossil in marble. The suture patterns that this particular fossil exhibits are very unique and characteristic of the ammonoid shell. The rock type is also consistent with the rock type that is deposited in the ammonite’s natural environment

  12. Student Says:

    Catholicism is a far more science-based religion than most other Christian sects. The Church pays for many scientific studies, and they even have their own astronomers. Previous popes themselves have said that evolution makes sense, and they never believed the Earth was flat. There is no irony here – none at all. Everything you know is a lie.

  13. Phil E. Drifter Says:

    That’s not a fossil it’s a mold. Fossils are the actual remains of prehistoric creatures preserved in rock. Molds are images of prehistoric creatures left in whatever they are bound in when they die.

  14. Norm Smith Says:

    Marc, Charley, Theresa— I don’t want to rain on anybody’s parade, but (1) it’s limestone, a very common rock, not true marble; (2) I would give 100 to 1 odds that it is indeed an ammonite fossil and not a fake; if it’s a fake, it’s a very good one; and (3) ammonites are very common if you look in limestones of the right geologic ages, viz Mesozoic (approx. 75 to 250 million years ago). They went extinct at the same time the dinosaurs did…. end of Cretaceous Period. I don’t see the irony that some of you do. Creationists generally accept fossils as evidence of past life. They just think that the rocks bearing them were deposited a few thousand years ago by Noah’s flood.

  15. Andy Says:

    I traveled through Italy and saw many marble quarries. We brought back a marble bowl which is almost entirely little fossils. I am not a geologist, but I can guarantee that I saw, touched, and own marble with many fossils in it. Whoever claims that marble cannot have fossils needs to pay a little trip to the beautiful country! :)

  16. Mao Zedong Says:

    Are you sure it’s marble?
    Doesn’t look like marble to me O:

  17. No Good Says:

    This? This is the most amazing thing you can find in a church? Fantastic sculptures, intriguing mythology, robustly colored stained-glass windows depicting archetypal sagas, knowingly-constructed buildings, soul-rending music … and all you got is a floor stain?

  18. John C. McDonald Says:

    I have seen a few of those fossils, and in this type of stone; yet not in a church though. Alas, it doesn’t argue against or in favor of religion. Religious people tend to turn such findings around anyway, like the comment from one of the contributors above: “Catholicism is a far more science-based religion than most other Christian sects” –> for a Bright such as I a very funny remark ;-)

  19. KG Says:

    Well, I’ll be damned if this isn’t 100% proof God is a LIE!

  20. John Says:

    God allows Satan to place such distractions in our way, to test our faith. They are constructed by The Accuser to appear to support arguments for evolution, but they are evil frauds. Only those of us with True Faith can see through the deception. If you cannot see this, there is nothing you can do about it on your own. Faith is a gift from The Lord and if he has offered it to you and you have refused it, you cannot then see the truth.

  21. Tommy Says:

    Sure John, a bad guy living in a world of fire put things on the Earth to provide distractions. That doesn’t seem far-fetched to you?

    Also you are wrong about faith. Faith is something people believe in after being taught it from an early age, brain-washed, some might say. It is something people believe in, without an evidence to believe in it.

    You have refused to believe in evidence, in scientific fact. Instead you choose to believe in stories that people have told you or that you have read. So therefore my friend it is you who cannot see the truth.

  22. bubba Says:

    Photoshopped.

  23. FossilMan Says:

    @Phil E. Drifter:

    Most of the fossils people hear about are not remains. They’re too old for the “actual remains” to survive. Rather they are rock-shaped representation of the original organism. And they come in both mold form (a “negative” image of the organism), or cast form (where the mold has subsequently been filled by material).

    Each is rarely found in metamorphic rocks. If they did survive metamorphosis, they would tend to be heavily distorted.

  24. Isa Says:

    Are you insinuating that God has preselected his “believers” and “non believers” and thus a person is already doomed to heaven or hell before birth? Isnt that a bit….. sadistic? Your reply is not consistent with the Abrahamic tradition of free will.

  25. Mike Says:

    I REALLY hope that last comment was a bit of satire…

  26. chris Says:

    look all around you.. everything you see is clear proof of god… i feel sorry for atheists that cant see the obvious… remember you cant disprove god with his/her own science.. take a deep breath and take in the obvious

  27. Andy Says:

    Haha everybody should read the god delusion! Especially John

  28. Dan Says:

    Sorry Chris and John. Still do not believe in god. Just like I do not believe in Santa claus. I grew up and realized how foolish god and the bible sound. I feel sorry for how you can not deal with the fact that not every one believes in your god. Believe in what you want. I am happy not believing just as my wife and children are.

  29. John L Says:

    I am an atheist/humanist who was born into a Catholic family. Catholics should have no problem with fossils in their churches or with the fact that evolution happened.

    The official catholic church stance is as follows..

    The big bang happened but god did it. Evolution happened but god did it. When man evolved god gave humans souls.

    You are allowed to interpret the facts for yourself regarding the age of the universe/earth/human race.. see this gem of theological contortionism :

    “Though faith is above reason, there can never be any real discrepancy between faith and reason. Since the same God who reveals mysteries and infuses faith has bestowed the light of reason on the human mind, God cannot deny himself, nor can truth ever contradict truth”

    also

    “Scripture presents the work of the Creator symbolically as a succession of six days of divine ‘work,’ concluded by the ‘rest’ of the seventh day” , but “nothing exists that does not owe its existence to God the Creator. The world began when God’s word drew it out of nothingness; all existent beings, all of nature, and all human history is rooted in this primordial event, the very genesis by which the world was constituted and time begun”

    That is quite a get out clause! I suppose it is better than the more literal interpretations of the bible.

    So if you want to toe the line as a catholic you are sort of allowed to believe in evolution but you have to go along with the tooth fairy style story that god did it. I would be very very careful about any science backed by the catholic church. Not so long ago they were telling people in some of the planets most AIDS ravaged countries that condoms did not help to prevent the spread of AIDS.

  30. John2 Says:

    Yeah Andy. Everyone should read The God Delusion. But they should also read such books as Signature on the Cell and the Bible…then make up their own minds. There is evidence worthy of considering for those who believe material is not all there is.

  31. Dustin Says:

    It’s too bad that so many Christians give Christianity a bad name. Evolution and global warming is happening, and the Earth is NOT 6000 years old, and science is NOT a distraction from Satan meant to challenge faith; and that in no way contradicts the belief that Jesus Christ is the son of God. Christians who try and refute well proven science sound just as crazy as people from any other cult with outrageous beliefs.

  32. Dustin Says:

    ***** Evolution and global warming *are* happening,…*****

  33. wmg Says:

    I too am a recovering catholic complete with a jesuit uncle.
    Religions are in the business of promoting their own particular religion.
    Integrity and truth have never been part of religious doctrine.
    They demand obedience to arbitrary laws based on superstition and malice.
    “The opiate of the masses” sums it up pretty well, don’t you think?

  34. CraigOS Says:

    God uses photoshop?

  35. bobby Says:

    Which god?

  36. Tanner Says:

    “God allows Satan to place such distractions in our way, to test our faith. They are constructed by The Accuser to appear to support arguments for evolution, but they are evil frauds. Only those of us with True Faith can see through the deception. If you cannot see this, there is nothing you can do about it on your own. Faith is a gift from The Lord and if he has offered it to you and you have refused it, you cannot then see the truth.”

    Delusional: A false belief strongly held in spite of invalidating evidence, especially as a symptom of mental illness.

  37. Tim Says:

    I laugh at both atheists, and true believers. No human being has objective evidence proving either case. Everyone is AGNOSTIC, whether they like it or not. No matter how intelligent you attempt to portray yourselves with this pretentious bullshit you will never know the answers until you die.. if there are answers at all that is. Also, most of you morons generally attack a cultural depiction of god. (talk about intrinsic reasoning pfft). From what I have read thus far (and I’m not catholic or “religious” for that matter) not a single one of you has actual knowledge about how the catholic church functions in its theology or catechism. Atheists are just as idiotic as Believers. Both assume they have knowledge of the divine or lack thereof. Proving cultural religion is flawed.. doesn’t disprove the possibility of higher knowledge. Let me know when someone has proof in a quantum mech. method (assuming you can even grasp the time, space, and probability concepts). I’m sure Schrodinger would LOVE to know what you know. Until then think before you perpetuate a fallacy encouraged by your social community (with little substantiating evidence i might add). Anyways enjoy the bubble your reason is bound to. if you want a good debate (tpr68@aim.com).. Think deeper. Think for yourself. Most of all, Think alone and be honest with your conclusions. Thinking with emotions is ok as it is all part of being human, but do not allow your emotions to cloud your better judgment. Have a good day.

  38. Tim Says:

    Also, on evolution… What if “god” was simply a mathematical entity that defines probability? Electrons behaves differently when simply observed by a human being. (CERN Laboratories, Europe). So truthfully if this higher power defines probability, it also affects the Boolean style in which nature proceeds itself.

    Too bad we can never know. We are bound by our perception. We can only look so far into the past. We only know how to analyze cause and effect as we have been effected by it. What caused not only our physical interacting universe, but the existence of probability in the first place? Most likely our physical universe cannot have a physical cause. I cant conclude though, as Im biased by my perception. It’s far to easy to conclude against a religious god, but try to conclude against a simply spiritual god devoid of name, gender, or any other cultural quality. You will find that you were an agnostic all along and you didnt even know it. A – Without Gnosia – Knowldge. Again, email me when you have real knowledge supporting your claims tpr68@aim.com. Thank you for reading.

  39. Jeff Says:

    Your comments and obvious ignorance not withstanding, Creationists deny none of the fossil record, and in fact believe it is some of the strongest scientific evidence supporting the Creationist construct. Unlike Tim (above) I find the Bible God extremely difficult to dismiss. All of the prevailing evidence suggests to me that He indeed must be Who He says He is. In over forty years of dialoguing with Atheists I have found scant few who know anything substantial about the fields of historic and scientific apologetics. They argue largely from ignorance, consider themselves “brights,” and altogether dismiss anyone who disagrees with them. They prefer laughter and ridicule to rationale discourse, although most of them refer to themselves as rationalists. Yet, according to both educational level and IQ I am “brighter” than most of them and have come to a diametrically opposite position.
    The good news remains that Jesus Christ is a far better Savior than we are sinners.

  40. dog Says:

    Jeff, if you “find the Bible God extremely difficult to dismiss”, and are happy to get a different perspective that challenges your beliefs from a top biblical scholar, this book is a good place to start. Dismissing the Bible God is as easy as dismissing the Bible, and when you look at its historical origins, that’s not too hard to do at the end of the day.

    You also say, “All of the prevailing evidence suggests to me that He indeed must be Who He says He is.” That’s a very bold claim an it would be great if you could share a couple of examples of the evidence you speak of.

  41. staci Says:

    “I laugh at both atheists, and true believers. No human being has objective evidence proving either case. Everyone is AGNOSTIC…”

    This was my thought pattern until I read The God Delusion. “There may be fairies at the bottom of the garden. There is no evidence for it, but you can’t prove that there aren’t any, so shouldn’t we be agnostic with respect to fairies?” –Richard Dawkins

    Atheism is all about probabilities, my friend, and only denies the existence of SUPERNATURAL gods (often used to deny belief in the judeo-christian god, as judeo-christianity has selfishly hijacked the term “god” to refer to their concept of God). I prefer to label myself a naturalistic pantheist, as I believe nature, energy, and the universe to be synonymous with God. Pantheism is the belief that everything is god, in contradistinction to the belief that god is everything.

  42. atheistlibertariancriminalasshole Says:

    tim: 1) not believing in something is not the same as believing it IS not. the fact that we cannot disprove the existence of god does not automatically induce us to assume his existence.
    2) your references to schrodinger, god as a ‘mathematical entity’, and your use of the word ‘boolean’ are not enough to convince me that you actually have anything intelligent to say.
    3) your statement that it is unlikely that our physical universe has a physical beginning is only valid when it’s still thought of as THE UNIverse rather than part of the multiverse. and is evidence of your own presumption.

  43. Samad's dad Says:

    Alhamdullialh, this is the work of the one true God Allah. Busmillah Ar Rehman Ar Raheem!

  44. Ellie Says:

    guys. CHILLLL its totes mgotes a cool rock thingy, but seriously, it is an ammonite. it is not proof that god is real. it is not proof that god is not real. it is an AMMONITE, an interesting sample of the beauty and profoundness of nature and our wonderful planet that we have taken upon ourselves to inhabit and develop and destroy. that imprint of a long dead creature has NOTHING TO DO WITH GOD honestly you all sound absoloutly pshycotic and paranoid. really. wait… why am i even wasting time on this weirdo website….
    you guys need to stop worrying so much about religion, jesus pesus.
    haha i said jesus….

  45. qed Says:

    I saw this graffiti in the wall of the Gaudi Cathedral in Barcelona:

    “Fuck the Pope!
    …without condom”

    Which all proves that you can find deep truths in churches.

  46. Ryan Says:

    I wasn’t going to say anything as this appeared to be a somewhat coherent little discussion, but when I read someone say “creationism and evolution can coexist, you just have to acknowledge that God used evolution as a means of creating the world” I kinda have to. There is no piece of evolution that needs any explanation outside of purely scientific sources, nor is there any hole that cannot be explained through purely scientific sources. You can’t just take evolution and declare it was God’s will, that’s the opposite of the meaning of the theory. Evolution as a natural process that did not require supernatural intervention, that can be explained through natural foundations and basic reason. I don’t understand what part is supposed to be facilitated by God, as every part is an inevitably of conditions. If you’re Christian and you believe in evolution, you’re hardly a Christian.

  47. Aristotle's Muse Says:

    Alright you ignorant atheists… if there is no god, then HOW DOES THE SUN KEEP ORBITING THE EARTH? BAM!

    You see people, that’s how you deal with atheist skum. With LOGIC! Hit that bullseye and the rest of the dominoes will come down like a house of cards… CHECKMATE!

  48. doug Says:

    For one thing, the sun does not orbit the earth dumbass. And if you miss spoke, how in the name of god’s hell does gravity provide proof of god? BAM
    If burning an innocent child to death in their home while asleep on christmas eve is all “part of gods plan” then he’s a fucking asshole. (and no, it’s not a personal experience) And then you give your hard earned money to the church, praise the fucker, and ask him to watch over someone he didn’t watch over to begin with.
    The devil is blamed for everything that is happening to someone else, but go to that childs funeral and it will unequivocally be called “GOD’s PLAN and He needed them in heaven for a higher purpose” BULLSHIT. Just a
    The bible, when liberally translated provides a descent moral code. When read literal it provides reason for some real fucked-up behavior.
    For those of the GOD’s PLAN” mentality then i guess he planned for me to think he is a sorry piece of shit if i thought he existed at all, which i don’t.
    Ask the 9yr old girl in south america who (along with her mother, and all doctors and nurses involved) was excommunicated from the church for aborting twins (that would have killed her if brought to term) that her piece of shit father fathered after repeatedly rapping her since she was 6yrs old. The father by the way is still welcome in the church. All sanctioned by the fucking POPE.
    Enough GODDAMN said. B B B BAM

  49. doug Says:

    “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then He is not omnipotent. Is He able, but not willing? Then He is malevolent. Is He both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is He neither able nor willing? Then why call Him God?” – Epicurus

  50. zumo Says:

    I’m an atheist and I agree with Marc Petersen. It might just be a pattern on the floor. Might just be a coincidence. Don’t pass it off as a fossil so quick unless it has been confirmed

  51. mike Says:

    Its not rare at all to see fossils in marble

  52. Zartan Says:

    Ye GODS, you’re all a bunch of pretentious ASSHOLES! Except Aristotle’s muse – wonderful bit of satire (I hope). Why do you CARE?! All of this religious discussion is just a way for a group of people to tell every other group out there “I’m right, neener neener.” The only problem is, you’re all doing it. If you would take a quick moment to listen to everyone else, you would be forced to notice similarities – a world destroying flood appears in almost every major religion out there. Ever wonder why? Think on it for a minute, then get back to your squabbling.

  53. Ernesto Says:

    I am Spanish, and NO ONE in Spain believes the Earth is 6000 years old, we all aknowledge evolution and the fact that te Earth is 4 billion years old. It still is kinda ironic, but i can assure you, that no one believes such things in Spain, and, to be honest, in very few places besides the states.

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