Results of debate in Malawi

Thanks to George Thindwa for this...


Debate took place on 27th December 2009 in Lilongwe, Malawi

These are the phone-in text messages that were received on the debate. (The English translation is in brackets where caller used local language)

1. I am glad God is in control during this debate – Mr Weston-Time: 27/12/2009 20:14:37
2. Christianity is real and acts as a safety valve, without it there could be total uncontrollable murder, theft, etc. If we revolved from monkeys, who created monkeys then? I'm Thakatwayo Mbizi, Mzimba District (north).
3. Humanism is a disgrace to our Christian country. ALLEN. time: 27/12/2009 20:17:44
4. Humanism: can change our country to better a Malawi, we are ready to welcome the humanist; they should be some sought of changes. Joel Twanjo Chihana, Karonga district.
5. To claim there is no God is to play god. To suggest that human beings are a product of evolution is to suggest that a radio or computer is superior to man. Steven. Time: 27/12/2009 20:21:59
6. Malawi has been, is and will forever be a Christian nation. People should always edit their words before they speak them to avert his wrath - Kalivute from Nthesa Village in Ntchisi district. Time: 27/12/2009 20:20:44
7. Abodza enawo chikritsu ndiye chowona. Alape lero, muwabatize abusa achakwela ine gift magunda. (Those Humanists are liars. Christ is the truth. They should repent and be baptised by Pastors) -Kabindiza Village.G DEDZA. Time: 27/12/2009 20:15:28
8. If atrocities take place in unreligious/unchristian society. Can humanism explain who is responsible for this? Moses Kasitomu. Blantyre district.
9. Mulungu ndiye mwini chitukuko asamanyoze yehova chifukwa alemela lero. (God is the owner of development. Humanists should not degrade God because they have become rich today)-Time: 27/12/2009 20:13:57
10. The country belongs to all.- M. Chingomanje from South Africa. Time: 27/12/2009 20:17:13
11. Secular humanism ilibe malo in Malawi. Amenewo akadwala amafuna KHRISTU akumkanayo, (Humanism has no place in Malawi. Those humanists when sick they will want Christ the one they are despising)-Boxer, Dowa district.
12. If he said that there is no God. Who create this world and he will meet God at the end of his life.Time: 27/12/2009 20:12:36
13. To humanists: why should u be good today if u don’t believe in life after death? What keeps a poor humanist from stealing if he is sure that his action won’t bring him eternal condemnation? Bizwick Kainga, Blantyre- Time: 27/12/2009 20:36:31
14. Who is your God? Why is it that you differ to answer!! You Christians. Time: 27/12/2009 20:36:37
15. Pa 2 timoteo 3:1-4 akukamba za masiku otsiriza zimene anthuwa ndikufuna kungosokera anthu. Chi Khristu ndi chabwino kwa aMalawi chifukwa chirikuteteza. ( Timothy 3:1-4 talks about the end times. Those humanists want to confuse people. Christianity is good to Malawians because it protects us)- Victor Mphande. Time: 27/12/2009 20:34:17
16. The humanists don’t know what they are saying. 1- I can hear them doubting often, they are always saying may be, may be. 2- Read the Bible Isaac wasn’t killed. Better shut up if u don’t know. Mazibayao Kamata, ICA, Lilongwe.
17. Christianity is the hub of mankind the world over. Diverson Bwanankubwa,Manja,Blantyre- Time: 27/12/2009 20:38:14
18. If they are saying we are from monkeys, then who created monkeys? Kungoti our god is good, if I were god ndikanangowalanga pomwepo Brighton Magongwa area 23. Time: 27/12/2009 20:32:57
19. Christianity is real and anyone there knows. If you play with God, you will face wrath. Blessings Mlowoka, Mzuzu .
20. Bravo humanists we welcome you. God is not good. Religion is counter progressive. Malawi needs to progress- Banda Lilongwe- Time: 27/12/2009 20:31:02
21. Development can be there even without Christianity. Were people from the Old Testament Christians? Elaborate on this using the Bible. Cosmas Banda. Area 12.
22. U can be a loser by following humanism. You lose nothing by following God, and you'll perish, it will be proved that God is real at the end. John Ngulube MZUZU
23. Chi krisitu ntchakukhumbika mMalawi, wanji wakubwelebweta waka .Chiuta ntchindele yai pakutipa chalu cha mtende. (Christianity is good for Malawi, others are just talking nonsense. God is not stupid for giving us a peaceful Malawi)-Allan Mphande-Mzimba West,Mphimbi.
24. Thindwa Wamwana, Leka Kuteta. Wezi Banda -Mpherembe, Mzimba district. (George Thindwa, young man, stop lying)- Mzimba District. Time: 27/12/2009 20:54:04
25. Religious people live by faith. Faith is blind belief. Therefore, Christians are blind followers. Open your eyes and see. John Lilongwe-Time: 27/12/2009 20:51:34
26. Speaking against God and Jesus is blasphemous, repent now or you perish. Aubrey Ngoma- Mzimba District - Time: 27/12/2009 20:44:42
27. Many pastors abuse God for their benefit, instil fear in people so they can reap more from them. Phil. Lilongwe.
28. Olakwa ndinu nonse akhristu muli pompo chifukwa mukupepusa dzina la Ambuye Yesus Christ. Asiyeni akufa aikane akufa okhaokha. (The wrong ones are you Christians who are there at the debate because you are belittling the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Leave them those humanists , they want to bury each other themselves when they die)-S.Chilonga.Chinsapo.LL.
29. Humanists! Did the Israelites evolve from monkeys? If God favours them, why not us because we are alike. Thus you can agree that there is real God. Fortune. Chiradzulu. Time: 27/12/2009 21:03:41
30. Kodi okhulupilira umunthuwa analembetsa kapena ndi odziwika ndi boma? Anthuwa ngosokonekela ndipo atisokoneza, tichenjere. (Are these humanists registered with Government? These people are confused and they will confuse us, let us be on the alert)-Wezi Banda- Time: 27/12/2009 21:28:19
31. Am glad that humanists are also quoting verses from the bible, it means that they know the truth but they only choose to ignore it. This isn't strange. Blantyre district-Time: 27/12/2009 21:08:55
32. Morality is not a Christian monopoly. It is a social product.–Sam, Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 21:05:09
33. There is not even a single sensible point that Humanists have said to capture my attention. Shaba Allen
Time: 27/12/2009 21:01:57
34. Abusa Achakwela amenewo ndi ana abadwa chikristu chilipo kale asatinamize. atuluke Mmalawi muno. (Pastor Chakwera, those humanist are children born after Christianity is already established. They should not tell us lies. They should leave this country)-Makina Spacious, Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 21:01:49
35. Becoz it is the only satisfying answer to the question: why is there something rather than nothing? A question of purpose & not function of lyf &or our existence. Ngosi, Mzuzu. Time: 27/12/2009 21:00:27
36. These people talking against God will one day seek God on their dying beds-P.S Seira. Time: 27/12/2009 20:59:51
37. Those on the humanism desk know the truth. They disagree just for the sake of educational purposes. Lot Manda - Mzuzu. Time: 27/12/2009 20:58:06
38. Human Rights are founded on the 10 commandments. From Olivia Liwewe, scholar. Time: 27/12/2009 20:56:08
39. Christianity is supreme in Malawi. Where would Malawi be without Christianity? No God, no science. God gave scientists brains, He controls everything. Hilda, Blantyre .Time: 27/12/2009 20:55:07
40. Can the humanists explain how they came into existence themselves? Who and what is their ancestor. Let them explain their link scientifically. Michael- Mzuzu. Time: 27/12/2009 20:53:18
41. This is blasphemy at its best. U say these humanists are Malawians? Anjatidwe manja amenewo. (Arrest them). Christianity is the best thing for Malawi, Vincent Kumwenda Mulanje. Time: 27/12/2009 20:51:53
42. There was a parliamentarian who he believed in no God, but he cried 4 God's rescue when his boat overturned on his way to Likoma Island, what was he crying for?-Jon Mulera-Zomba
Time: 27/12/2009 20:50:43
43. Those humanisms are a sign of the coming of Jesus Christ. Beware of them. I am Nelson Kapira .Kasisi. Karonga Time: 27/12/2009 20:50:31
44. Who is sponsoring u guys? Muvulala. (You will be injured). GOD is good. Amon Ndeketu.Kasungu. Time: 27/12/2009 20:49:09
45. Harboring secular humanism is to harbor evil. Malawi and rest of the world does not need that. H. Mtushera, Machinga.Time: 27/12/2009 20:48:59
46. Bravo Humanists.Atsogoleri Achikhristu asadye. (Christian leaders should not eat)-Time: 27/12/2009 20:47:37
47. Let every Malawian know that these are the end times. Lets pray for our Malawi. Those umunthu (humanists) guys should repent. God should help them through. Ruth Shaba Gulliver. Time: 27/12/2009 20:44:47
48. Fools say to themselves, "There is no God." Zausatana muno ayi! ( No Satanism here in Malawi) -I'm Michael Chibvumbula. Dowa district. Time: 27/12/2009 20:42:51
49. God does not exist. He is in your head. Grow up Christians. How can you believe in a speaking snake? John Banda, Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 20:41:29.
50. Please ask these humanists. Which book are they using and when did they come to Malawi? Where were they all this time? With Christianity, blind people are able to see. Gasana Mponela. Time: 27/12/2009 20:39:10
51. Auzeni zoona nkhani ya mulungu siyoseweletsa. Akutsutsawo apemphelereni a chakwela kuti amudziwe yesu. (Tell them the truth because God issues are not for play. Pastor Chakwera, pray to those humanist opposers so that they know Jesus) -Gogo Chalo Kalumba, ll. Time: 27/12/2009 20:39:10
52. Abodza enawo chikritsu ndiye chowona.Palibe chimene akudziwa.Tiwathandize mapemphelo ndi mayitanidwe.( Those humanists are lying. Christianity is the truth. Those humanists do not know anything. Let us help them by praying and god callings) - Gift Magunda, Kabindiza Village –Dedza district. Time: 27/12/2009 20:37:39
53. Christianity is real. Gents don’t play God. God is the source of all good things coz he is also good. J G Kajawa (Mtakataka). Time: 27/12/2009 20:36:18
54. Mulungu awakhululukire awo pakuti sakudziwa chimene akuchita. (Let God forgive those humanists because they do not know what they are doing)-Mary Hudson Phiri. Mthang'ombe Village,T/A.Masumbankhunda, Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 20:35:50
55. Christianity is the only solution for human to continue living in harmony because other ways of life have failed to bring peace to the world. Jumpha Mkandawire, Karonga; Time: 27/12/2009 20:35:38
56. Humanism can easily bring disunity, people will not respect each other and as a result the nation will fall down. Bright Nowa- Kataya School-Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 20:34:08
57. We love because God is love.1 John 4:8.Therefore, Christianity definitely is good for us Malawians. Wiseman Hudson Fredrick, Mthang’ombe Vg, Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 20:29:10
58. Christianity is a relationship. A relationship demands communication and the bible is a collection of letters to Christians and no humanist will ever understand them. Again! How did matter come into being? A renowned physicist Max Planc confirms that there is nothing like matter per se. All matter exists through a force and behind that force there is an intelligent mind. Can humanists tell me the intelligent mind behind the aforesaid force? Real science will never contradict the Bible but today's science contradicts evolution. Evolution is nothing but pure guess work. Harris Kumwenda in Area 23. Time: 27/12/2009 20:28:46
59. I say no GOD, no life. From Mchinji district. I am JOSHUA! Time: 27/12/2009 20:27:15
60. To you Humanists. What do you think can Malawians benefit if it is turned into Humanism. Time: 27/12/2009 20:23:08
61. I agree with Pastor Nick. I am a walking testimony of Christ. I know Him personally. I know that He healed- Time: 27/12/2009 20:22:43
62. Malawians set their morals thru Constitution & Laws. We don’t need god to set these for us. Phil. Lilongwe. Time: 27/12/2009 20:21:37
63. God is real and why are u speaking his name anyhow. His name should be respected. Vincent Mbwaga, Kaporo, Karonga District. Time: 27/12/2009 20:21:05
64. God is real you can’t say that humanist work at last u meet judgement. Rashid from Salima district.
Time: 27/12/2009 20:18:52
65. I am Matola from Mchinji. My comment is that we have to follow Christianity to have the blessed country. Time: 27/12/2009 20:18:52
66. Secular Humanism should not divert Christians. Why do they exist on earth? Christianity is real. G. Makalani, Mkanakhoti, Kasungu District. Time: 27/12/2009 20:18:46
67. To the seculars. Can they simply tell where they were before they came on earth? Who is their ancestor? Where are they coming from and going? May God forgive. Paul -Salima District. Time: 27/12/2009 20:17:00
68. Why are humans and animals not evolving, no monkeys becoming humans? Frank, Dedza District. Time: 27/12/2009 20:12:18

In total 73 phone-ins were received and the Moderator deleted five that he thought were bordering on obscenity. His apologies has been received as the Association wanted to read those ones as well for purpose of our strategies in promoting Humanism in Malawi.


LonelyAtheist said…
Yeah, monkeys don't turn into humans! Explain that, scientist!


My favorite is the one that says that current science disproves evolution.

Are these people indoctrinated so fiercely inside their own churches or is there some external/internal pressure on them that gives them these talking points? (e.g. someone gave them the ball and they just ran with it.) It just seems like a concerted effort.

Is it simply the act of reading the Christian bible that creates these views? I can't imagine that is so. Why are they all obsessed with humanists meeting their maker on their deathbed or in the afterlife and what has given them such certainty that this is actually what happens?

I don't think I've ever seen such vitriol towards HUMANISTS.. it's usually the dirty word 'atheist' that gets all of this negative reaction. This is both revealing and scary to me but there are a few there with some sense.
Anonymous said…
That's true. Since when did such fury get hurled at humanists? Utterly shocked, actually.

Incidentally, (this is a bit off subject-but evolution seems to be brought up a fair bit), I really think that there is a need to thoroughly explain the scientific method itself, and what it aims to achieve...
Paul P. Mealing said…
All this demonstrates is how polarised this debate is in some parts of the world. No one from either side is going to convince the other.

The debate only exists because people politicise it. If they didn't have religion in politics no one would care what anyone else believes. In a truly secular society that is the case.

Stephen, I'm currently reading Don Cupitt's latest book, Jesus & Philosophy. The subject matter belies the title, because it's really a history of the evolvement of humanism and its relationship with Western theology. I'm only half way through it, but I'd recommend it. Cupitt is an intelligent and provocative writer.

Have a good and productive 2010, from the other side of the world.

Best regards, Paul.
anticant said…
Stephen, I'm not sure why you posted this, unless to demonstrate the terminal gormlessness of brainwashed African Christians (as the Ugandan anti-homosexual law also does).

The interesting question for rationalists is what can be done to combat this without incurring accusations of 'New Colonialism' and 'Intellectual Imperialism'?

I won't be around on blogs so much in 2010, having other things to do, so I take this opportunity of wishing you and all your commentators here a peaceful, healthy, happy and prosperous New Year (however unlikely that prospect is!) I've greatly enjoyed the mental stimulus you provide and the sometimes fascinating debates which you spark off, and am grateful for the opportunity to have participated in my role as a thinking person though not a trained philosopher.
Anonymous said…
Having just re-read this, I noticed a reference to the "end times"... an interesting topic of conversation. Is it not the dangerous end time believers who want trouble in Jerusalem, and who want the apocalypse basically?

I watched a documentary that talked about how Americans had spread these beliefs into Africa and around that area.

Seems like this is a really big problem, and a really big exploitation of others.
DM said…
Looks like your website is under attack from supernatural forces…,40909.0.html

you really need to add comment moderation to your blasphemy…


have you for but a moment considered that you have adopted a position against 98% of the human race, both past and present?

do you think you are RIGHT and they are all WRONG?


now listen to this arrogant puffed up son of a bitch....

little scientist geek who would try to usurp God Himself!!!
theObserver said…
Different country, same old deluded fundamentalist tripe.

I suspect they don't see any difference between Atheism and Humanism.
Anonymous said…
Anticant - we will miss your pithy and apposite comments - please comment when you can.

Kiwi Dave
Paul P. Mealing said…
Hi Anticant,

I hope you do read this. I've enjoyed our robust discussions, and I want to wish you all the best, even though we've never met.

Since I've been blogging (over 2 years now) I've met some really interesting and stimulating people, and you're one of them.

Best regards, Paul.
Stephen Law said…
It's been a real pleasure anticant - I have always enjoyed your comments. I hope you come back soon.
anticant said…
Thanks, Stephen, Paul and everyone. I've enjoyed popping in here too. I'm hoping during 2010 to get my personal musings into book form, as there is a prospective publisher interested. Maybe on-line too, eventually. I'll keep you posted!

All the very best to everyone for a thoughtful and reasonable New year.

Keep up the good fight, Stephen!
theObserver said…
All the best Anticant and good luck with book !

Let us know when it's published.
Banana said…
I have recently had an article published in a local newspaper entiltled "Is Malawi really a God-fearing nation?" in which I contended that it isn't and promoting the humanist approach. Suprisingly, I have had no adverse comments from readers. The intensity of religiosity in Malawi continues to scare me. Unfortunately, the two people who appear to have spearheaded the movement in Malawi, Munyenyembe and Mwalubunju, have not or will not reply to my mails. If you would like a copy of my op-ed piece please advise how I should send it.