Sometimes I think that religious folks should really take a course or two on worldbuilding.
Take transubstatiation. This is a religious dogma (largely held by Roman Catholics) that the Eucharist used in the sacrament of Communion literally becomes (via the invitation of the priest) the body and blood of Jesus Christ.
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To clarify, though (and this is something I’ve noticed that Protestants often get wrong), this is not saying that Catholics believe that bread and wine become something other than bread and wine.
This is a little brain-melty, so stick with me here. Catholic dogma says that the bread and wine are still bread and wine, but that Jesus is “really, truly, and substantially present” in the Eucharist. That means that it has the shape, appearance, and form of bread and wine, but the essence of God. (I’m paraphrasing slightly here for clarity’s sake.) And this is something that permeates the entirety of these items:
To touch the smallest particle of the host or the smallest droplet from the chalice is to touch Jesus Christ himself, as when one person touches another on the back of the hand with only a fingertip and in so doing touches not merely a few skin cells but touches the whole person: “Christ is present whole and entire in each of the species and whole and entire in each of their parts, in such a way that the breaking of the bread does not divide Christ.”
So here’s where the world-building breaks down and the (normally) super-logical RCC that follows everything to the final conclusion runs into an unintended consequence.
Given that God is in “the smallest particle” of the Eucharist then implies that God permeates every molecule and atom of these items. There is no reason to expect this to change upon ingestion, in fact, that would invalidate the point of the sacrament. This means that the carbon atoms continue to be God as they’re digested, used by the body, and then as they leave the body.
Which brings us to the really jacked-up implications:
1. Every time that a Catholic has fought another Catholic, that means they’ve literally been trying to kill Jesus in a non-figurative way. But that’s not the biggest bit:
2. Because carbon comes out through the body through exhalation, it’s a reasonable thought that by this point every person who has drawn breath has inhaled a bit of carbon previously exhaled by a Catholic who has received communion. This implies that everyone has a bit of God in them by simply breathing.
Unless I’m missing something big, this strongly implies that the only correct position that a Catholic can have towards warfare (or anything violent) is a pacifist one. It also implies some pretty strong positions towards environmentalism and social justice. (“What you do unto the least of these” suddenly is a lot more literal.)
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