Ah, Religion :D | April 24, 2012

by Joe

Glad to see all the discussion for the last scene :D I was kind of expecting the touchy issue of religion to spark some debate and as long as everyone remains civil and respects each others’ beliefs, I’m more than happy to let the discussion continue!

As the author of this lil’ tale, knowing that I have an audience of varying tastes, morals, and beliefs, I enjoy treading on unknown ground and seeing what kind of reaction I get. When The Pocalypse started, I wanted it to be purely comedic, making the monsters of the world more of a joke than a threat. Then, I started noticing serious apocalypse-related feedback and I found myself adapting my original idea to something with a little more drama, but still keeping Joe, well, Joe :D I was happy to find that I felt more comfortable writing this way, without having to come up with something funny for every scene. Then I started with the cliffhangers and expanding the plot to introduce some of the other enemy species and characters, while trying to make everything fit together. I’ve received feedback every step of the way and I couldn’t be happier to see where the story has gone :D It would be completely different if it wasn’t for all of you and your feedback!

Chapter 7 is another one of those “hey, let’s try this and see what happens” moments. As a Christian myself, being raised Christian and having a 100% Christian family, I feel that Christianity is something I know about, personally. I know what kind of discussion and arguments can come from a religious household and while Oscar’s family’s situation isn’t exactly based on a true story, I can somewhat relate to what they’re going through. I know the extremes that stubbornly hold their ground and close their minds to even the most respectful discussion. But, I also know that even the most religious and devout people can be open-minded about their spirituality and faith. I’ve been through every sacrament that my religion has to offer – except for the priest and near-death ones, of course – and I am, and always will be, open and willing to listen to every belief system that a person may want to talk to me about, from atheism to agnosticism to satanism. I’m also very interested in Buddhism and its values. I’ve done some reading on Buddhism and it really does speak to me and I do agree with a lot of its teachings. I also understand and agree with a lot of aspects of atheism. I believe in evolution. I believe in science. And, I personally don’t believe that I’m any less of a Christian for doing and believing in any of the above. I respect all of your beliefs. I’m glad you’re all strong enough to discuss them in an open forum while still being civil. I know the internet grants all of us a level of anonymity, but I still respect you all for letting us know what you believe and for letting me know what you think about Chapter 7 so far. I’m sure the religion discussion will continue throughout this chapter and I hope you all continue to respect each others’ beliefs, even if they differ from your own :D

When I was thinking about how to start Chapter 7, I knew it had to be about Andy and Cross and that they had to run into something that would reveal and develop more about their characters and relationship. Originally, the survivors at the Harbour were going to be an idyllic group of hopeful people that Andy and Cross were going to viciously chow down on, making us sad that a group of happy, innocent people were killed, so close to leaving Hammerston on their boat. But then I thought, “Nah, let’s make things more interesting and deep. Let’s throw God in the mix.” So, after creating the Harbour, the characters, and animating the scene, I held my breath and published Scene 1. And, here we are now :D

Who knows, maybe Andy and Cross will still chow down on this group. Maybe they won’t. I don’t know what I had in store for this group because I was so focused on their beliefs that I didn’t think about their future. I figured I would take this chapter one scene at a time, like I’ve done with other chapters. So, getting feedback and ideas from all of you has definitely shaped this scene and possibly the next few. But, who knows? The feedback from this scene may push the next scene in a completely new direction! That is just the nature of this beast I call The Pocalypse and why I love making it with all of you, not just as an audience, but as fellow authors with your own experiences, your own beliefs, and your own stories to tell :D

Enjoy Scene 2 – “Rotters”!

You can follow The Pocalypse on Facebook, Twitter and RSS!

Check out Green Pixel’s first iOS game: BlockHopper! http://blockhopper.greenpixel.ca/ Thank you for your support and have fun running, hopping, and thinking your way to the Goal! Make your own levels, too! :D The FREE Lite version is also out! Get it here!

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CraftlordDark
CraftlordDark
10 years ago

Very good way to end an scene, now i will be in suspense until next time D:
My opinion in religion is to have no opinions, i respects all beliefs, everyone have the right to believe in everything they want, even the spaghetti monster god believers D:

Snerky
Snerky
10 years ago

Oh no oh no oh no, I don’t like where this is going..

Mzilla
Mzilla
10 years ago

Creeeeeeepy…

Bunnie
Bunnie
10 years ago

It’s so nice to see someone else the same way I am ^_^. Believing that God and science can coexist seems to be such a rare combination, which is sad since it’s very simple (science the how, God the why) and open-mindedness seems to become rarer and rarer as it becomes “cooler” to troll and rage all over the internet (and in real life, too). While I believe in the Christian God, my views on religion take a hard turn from there and I don’t believe in a lot of things the average christian does. It’s hard to pave your own road when you’ve been raised to believe this or that, or raised to believe nothing at all. Coming from an extremely southern baptist household, I’ve been told I’m going to hell for things as little as voting for a democrat, but in the end the important thing is to not only keep an open mind but also hold on to the beliefs that are important to you, even if that belief is that there are no deities at all.

Dyl
Dyl
10 years ago

Way to be, Joe. These can be some tough issues, but I love how you’re handling them. I’m also really excited to see Andy again. Cross… not so much ;P but after Andrius was so helpful and protective of Joe, I can’t help but like the guy. If Doc and Dominic can discover the “cure” for Zombie and help ZOMGACK!! and the rest, I’d be curious to see if Dom and Andy’s score could be settled… can Abominations kill people or just create more Abominations? But even Cross violated that with Rosa… So much good stuff! Haha keep it up

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

Aww… at first I wasn’t sure where this was going and now I kinda like where it’s going.
Also, I would like to remind people who didn’t like something about this sudden thrusting of religion into this because it’s somehow “cliche” and “predictable”, I remember when Joe introduced Rusty and people were like “Rusty’s gonna DIEEEE!” and… last I checked he was still alive. Mayhap we shouldn’t jump to conclusions on this chapter either. :D

BloodWolf7
BloodWolf7
10 years ago

Joe, that was awesome. I have to say, I’m surprised that you’d openly admit that you’re a Christian, and I think that that’s pretty awesome. It seems like a lot of authors either, understandably, don’t touch the subject or say that they’re Agnostic or Atheistic. So, it’s pretty awesome that you’re willing to admit it.

As to the direction of The Pocalypse, I, in the brief interlude between Chapter 6 and Chapter 7, was actually wondering when we were going to see Cross and Andrius again. I have to say, from my perspective, it was pretty well timed bringing them in again at this point, just when I start wondering what happened to them. Looking at how Andrius wants to treat things, I don’t think that he’ll just “chow down” on the people. He’ll probably get them to finish the boat, maybe even help them in some way, then take them along. Cross, if he is allowed to go wild at all, would probably start to kill them off openly about half way, or even once the boat is finished.

But, those are just my thoughts on the matter. I guess we’ll see. Personally, what I like to do in my own writing, is let the characters handle themselves. They’ll grow and what they do will be natural for them, as if they really are making the decisions on their own.

Hadrien
Hadrien
10 years ago

Hello, Joe ! Concerning religious issues, I am of the opinion that God is an unnecessary hypothesis, that the world is complicated enough as it is without involving stuff whose existence we have no proof of. However, I also think that religious issues are not worth fighting about :)

BloodWolf7
BloodWolf7
10 years ago

Also, on a note, did the quality of this one seem to drop off for some reason for some people? For some reason it looks kind of blurred, as if I was playing a flash game on Facebook and I turned the quality mode off or somn. I don’t know if it’s an error, or my comp, or what. But I feel it deserves to be pointed out.

the slayer
the slayer
10 years ago

ethen tho i dont beleve in eny thing i thourt that this sene was good o and joe it would have been relly cool if you made him tearn just before he kicked him in

sh4d0wfl4re
sh4d0wfl4re
10 years ago

@joe I do enjoy the comment-based turnabouts you put into this comic. It is always good to see an author grow by listening to the discordant chorus of his readers.
*clap, clap* I applaud your handling of such touchy subjects thus far. It is a rare skill.

Yinello
Yinello
10 years ago

Aww poor Candace.

Also gaaaah Philip! Resist da voice!

Not going to say
Not going to say
10 years ago

3 things.
1. Joe why did you have to do this, i find religeous debates pointless and annoying, everyone is to stubborn.
2. For all those on the side of religon, one question, where is your proof?
3. there is a god, but he doesn’t give his creations free will, he controls all, he often has things where the charaters act as if the world is but a web comic, and his name is Joe.

Garrison
Garrison
10 years ago

hi i know you take suggestions from the viewers so i would like to ask for more interaction like the battle with Bug and Graybane plessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee love your skills with story telling

Blackmoon845
Blackmoon845
10 years ago

Joe, great cliff hanger. I can see where this is going, at least, I think I can. Also, props to you on being able to admit your faith. I agree that it doesn’t make you any less of a believer in your chosen faith to learn about the other ones that are out there. Thank you for creating a great comic, and keep up the good work. Glad that so far, it seems everyone has kept it very civil.

D
D
10 years ago

@Not going to say
1. I would imagine one reason would be to increase enthusiasm for, interest in, and participation in his comic which he seems to have succeeded in doing.
2. It is not within my power to give you proof that you would accept. As I said previously, “I first believed in something bigger because it is the position with the greatest statistically positive outcome and therefore the only logical position to take, not because of some yearning for strength. After that initial faith, knowledge is begotten from faith and from that knowledge is begotten understanding and from that understanding is begotten further faith in an unending cycle. God gave us a great enough ability to reason that initial faith is obtainable by anyone who wishes to fully apply his reason and logic to a truly objective analysis of what one chooses to believes in.” If you truly want proof, you have the capacity to find it as do we all.
3. Denied.

Ricky Wijnans
Ricky Wijnans
10 years ago

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO i dont wanna see that phillips and the rest (ecxept The dad thing) Gonna die ,I like them the most! :( i hope bernie and his army comes and kill the Lt. and take Andy as prisoner then its fine …till the Sea Creatures come to land …End :D

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

@Not going to say- If there were proof, religion wouldn’t need words like “faith.”

There’s no real proof against there being a god either though. I mean, you can say “creationism is bull because [insert Evolution/Big Bang Theory stuff here]. But there really isn’t any way to prove that some giant guy in the sky isn’t pulling all the strings.

This brings me back to your first point… if you don’t like religious debates, why would you post this comment?

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

I should be clearer about that. Debating there being any truth to christianity is possible. Debating the existence of any kind of god is… er… not nearly as easy to do.

Brenkie
Brenkie
10 years ago

@Not Going To Say, first off, awesome name, secondly, the internet is for connecting to others and conversing over everything, if you don;t like the conversation, ignore it. I can see from your point of view, people will give everything and argue forever over a completely pointless subject, but as long as it doesn’t affect me, i really don’t care, nor should you. let em’ argue.

Brenkie
Brenkie
10 years ago

hey Joe, where has scrufflebeck gone??? I know you used him a LOT in the beginning, but he recently has been sort of forgotten. I would love to see him more, please!

Zach
Zach
10 years ago

Meh… I don’t think Philip (the atheist son) has anything to apologize for. If the family’s ideal behavior is to not let religious differences get in the way of their unity, then it’s the father’s fault, as he knows there are religious differences and yet parades his views around everywhere, expecting his son to participate in grace, claiming demonic possession (not infection) is what creates zombies (despite all the evidence against it). If Philip has to not mention his atheism, then his father shouldn’t mention his Christianity (technically, it could be any general monotheistic religion, but from context, I’m pretty sure it’s intended to be Christianity).

j'zargo
j'zargo
10 years ago

wow all i can say is that i don’t mind what people believe myself i am atheist

Dranlord
Dranlord
10 years ago

NOOOOOO i was hopping to see the sea moster in this one hahahah but still really good

illeatyourself
illeatyourself
10 years ago

Somehow, I saw this happening.

BloodWolf7
BloodWolf7
10 years ago

@Willy, I can’t help but wonder if you mean me. If so, I more-so meant the title meaning the slaughter of the family. Granted, you have me with the Mall survivors. Maybe someone, or a group, will survive. But as for the religion part, I love seeing it added, I just mean that in a post apocalyptic scenario, you generally see the religious people become rather close minded. It’s back to how it was in the Dark Ages where if you don’t believe exactly what they do then you’re a heretic and deserve death. I can’t help but wonder what the dad would say if he found out Darren was actually on Phillip’s side (to be honest, I’d expect a bit of a change of heart. He doesn’t seem like a cold enough guy to start to taking joy in his son’s death because of a lack of faith, at least not yet.)

@Everyone else: I have to admit, it bums me a bit that I missed the religious discussion/debate from earlier. I always love taking part in those things, though, since Not going to say’s comments were deleted, I’m guessing that they were regarded as inflammatory. As to the whole proof thing, I have a story on my own personal proof, if anyone wants me to, I’ll share it. Otherwise, I’ll just keep it to myself.

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

Oh no. I was talking about the guy whose name is “Not gonna say” not you. XD

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

Er wait… you meant my first comment. Er… I was kinda just pushing about the people who as soon as they saw religion being introduced into the comic they were kinda like “Well now I’m disappointed in Joe.” and I’m kinda like “Wow… you can’t trust the guy with his own story. :/”
But actually, at this point, the father could do one of two things if he found out about Darren being an atheist… he would either use it to back up his own theory about the zombies being a punishment from god (which is why Darren actually showed signs of being infected, or at least, in the fathers messed up mind)or actually be reasonable about it and maybe admit he may have been wrong about a lot of things. Personally, I think the first one would be more interesting. XD
And honestly, I mean… Joe has been really good about introducing characters. I’ll admit, I feel he was taking a big risk with this chapter too, but I’m already seeing a lot of potential here for this to be an excellent arc of the story.

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

Come to think of it, it would be interesting to see the father getting kinda depressed about it all, and maybe actually rethinking it all, then suddenly finding out from a diary or something that Darren was actually an atheist, and doing a complete 180 into the “GOD IS PUNISHING US ALL” idea.

Aethrys
Aethrys
10 years ago

Well. When confronted with evidence directly in contrast with his statements, (Darren being about to turn and previously declaring one becomes a zombie by worshiping the devil) Oscar completely ignores it. I applaud your ability to write an accurate depiction of a fundie character, Joe.

Rasmus Nielsen
Rasmus Nielsen
10 years ago

To be honest Joe, the last episode reminded me of how much i dislike that distinct religious version of what i call my faith. To me, people are free to choose as they like, that also means choosing their own religion and beliefs. please keep in mind that that doesn’t mean i do not believe that I am right, of course i believe that.

And just because im sayin im a christian, that doesn’t mean i agree with those that “calls” them selves christians, yet they say to kill homoseksuals and other people. that is wrong, every person should be respected.

raikue
raikue
10 years ago

dun dun duuuuuuuu

MrBester
MrBester
10 years ago

Err, which eye should Mom have a patch over? In the scene it is the left eye, in the dialogue it is the right…

h
h
10 years ago

I would like you leave this religion issues and topics out of this comic, it will turn this into a preaching site instead of something fun and interesting. I think you are losing fans, and this is derailing the comic. Honestly please the comic was great as it was coming if I wanted preaching I would go to the church, don’t ruin this putting religion, politics or sports topic just to encourage discussion. Those topics are pointless and take everyone to nowhere. Please, save the comic we have been fans for a long time, don’t let it get lost.

Kulta
Kulta
10 years ago

Giving space to debate religion on the internet you give space to flammers and trolls. I think it’s interesting to share and discuss different opinions about controversial subjects, but not on the internet.

Yinello
Yinello
10 years ago

Lol so much overreaction. If Joe wants to put religion in his comic, he can. It’s your choice if you decide to be sensitive about it or just to keep on enjoying the captivating story he gives us.

Vyrien
Vyrien
10 years ago

I sense that someone is going to pretend to be God…

Not going to say
Not going to say
10 years ago

I expected to get in more trouble for my commemts, rather happy about the response actually

Edward
Edward
10 years ago

Joe,do you still have Minecraft?Its quite epic now,Im catholic,but I got nothing to say.

Booieann
Booieann
10 years ago

I hope you say why the mom has an eye-patch,even in passing. I’m curious more about that than I am about the Zompire shenanigans.
I don’t have much to say on the religion discussion, (so I’m just gonna stick my views out for people to read) I’m not religious though I do think about it allot. Not an atheist though. I don’t have proof that there is a god, and I don’t have proof that there isn’t one, or some. Is there a category for that? xD There is a category for everything I’m sure.

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

@Not going to say(And everyone else who seems to be making a big deal of this.)- Well that’s because there was no-one there to contradict you, and no-one cares. People think other people care and that’s why people are making a big deal out of this, same as you.
Then there are other people who are making nothing of it and they seem to be doing just fine.
“Im catholic,but I got nothing to say.”
“If Joe wants to put religion in his comic, he can. It’s your choice if you decide to be sensitive about it or just to keep on enjoying the captivating story he gives us.”
“wow all i can say is that i don’t mind what people believe myself i am atheist”
These people seem to get it… and that thing they seem to get is: TRUST THE MAN WITH HIS OWN COMIC.
Yes, we debated religion in the last panel… but we weren’t even close to debating whether or not religion is a thing that’s true. That’s because… I’ll say it again… WE DON’T CARE, AND WE DON’T THINK IT’S A THING THAT IS IMPORTANT. I think a majority of the people on this site aren’t going to shun anyone for what they believe.
For me, that thing is agnosticism. I mean, that’s not entirely accurate. I tend to teeter back and forth. Though for that last couple years that teeter has continued to lean toward atheism. Usually, I’m actually researching religious stuff when I have the time, but for the last two years college has prevented this. Because I have other things to study and I really just haven’t felt like it. I still end up attending church at various times. Usually when I’m at home. My mom wouldn’t really care either way if I attended church or not, but my dad is a bit more… insistent. Not that he would make me go or anything, just that… it’s probably just easier for me to go to church once in a while than to… make things uncomfortable. So yeah… I guess I really liked this scene for that reason. For the reason that this scene does really say something about that view. Sometimes it’s okay to not cause confrontation. Sometimes that’s what being a kid/teen is about. Just going along with it because you can’t hope to change it, but eventually you’ll grow out of it and things will get better. I know that’s what high-school felt like. There’s no-way to deal with anything, and everyone will tell you “it’ll get better” but that doesn’t really help. You kinda feel trapped in a corner and all you can really do is wait.
SO yeah… I trust joe… and I don’t think this needs to be a big deal, but I also think this doesn’t mean we can’t talk about what we think. Otherwise, we’re no better than the father, no matter which “side” we’re on. XD

Willy
Willy
10 years ago

@Booiean- Usually people who are “unsure” about the existence of god can be generalized under “agnostic.” I think there are different groups for different kinds of agnostics, but as a group… agnostic is a good way to put it.

Kerfuffle
Kerfuffle
10 years ago

Hey Joe, I think you need to fix something with the mother and her eye patch. It’s on her left eye in the dialogue box but on her right eye in the scene. But besides that, great job :)

Blackmoon845
Blackmoon845
10 years ago

I’m glad to see after looking at this again that it has continued to be a fairly level headed discussion, and that it’s not just people flaming. I myself am Christian, and I couldn’t care less that there are christians seemingly portrayed in a poor light. This guy sort of reminds me of that church that protests soldiers funerals. Sure, I may not agree with what they have to say, but that’s the beauty of this country. You can believe whatever you want, and no one can stop you. As for what Rasmus Nielsen said, of course you believe what you believe is right. otherwise, you wouldn’t believe it. I’m not trying to start anything here, just trying to point how futile flaming and spamming about hot topics like religion is pointless. You’re not going to change someone’s mind by getting angry at them, and them getting angry back. That just makes them even more set in their ways. Flamers never win, the only way to win is not to play. Just like the game. :)

Edward
Edward
10 years ago

Joe,during Darrens funeral there is no blood on the pothole and at the evening part there is.

Booieann
Booieann
10 years ago

Willy~ It’s not ‘unsure’ it’s more, ‘I’m sure that I don’t know.’ I hope that makes sense. Agnostic is okay, and close, but I don’t think it would fit me. I do like Freethought, and it’s even related to Agnostic. Yet I still have a view that goes against it. Then again, I could be placed in either of them, and I’m just not willing to be placed.~ =P

sh4d0wfl4re
sh4d0wfl4re
10 years ago

Huh, when I posted yesterday I guess the conversation prior to my post hadn’t loaded yet….
@Willy@Booiean I think what you described could be Agnostic; as Agnostic is the large grouping of grey between believing God(s) exist and that they/s/he/it doesn’t. Kinda like how schizophrenia used to describe almost all psychoses (bi-polar, multiple personality, autism, etc. used to be called such)
Basically Agnosticism is presently a melting pot for a grey area of non-definition in which people have admitted that they don’t know the answer the ‘God’ question. I’m not sure if there’s any more definition given to the word.
.
Honestly I don’t like being given definition either, it took years (17ish) for me to identify myself as a nerd. Before I just called myself part of the ‘Outcast’ or ‘Undefined” social groups (in HS, I had a friend or two from every social group, which meant I was only part of a subgroup I created). I was never ashamed of being a nerd I just didn’t see it as my definition.
I haven’t really noticed any real difference in how people react to me aside from accepting the word ‘nerd’ with less confusion than ‘undefined’. For myself it changed only one thing vernacular, but hey words are only words. The definition, the important part, was unchanged even if the connotative focus of the words shifted.

Another Edward
Another Edward
10 years ago

Oh No! I ran out of episodes to watch! Awesome series Joe. Been watching for the last few days and been dreading catching up… now I have to wait for more. :( Please code fast.
@BlackMoon845: Dammit! I just lost the game.