Isaac Backus: Five Reasons Religious Taxes Are Wrong

In civil states the power of the whole collective body is vested in a few hands, that they may with better advantage defend themselves against injuries from abroad, and correct abuses at home, for which end a few have a right to judge for the whole society; but in religion each one has an equal right to judge for himself; for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done (not what any earthly representative hath done for him) 2 Cor. 5. 10. And we freely confess that we can find no more warrant from divine truth, for any people on earth to constitute any men their representatives, to make laws to impose religious taxes, than they have to appoint Peter or the Virgin Mary to represent them before the throne above. We are therefore brought to a stop about paying so much regard to such laws, as to give in annual certificates to the other denomination, as we have formerly done.

1. Because the very nature of such a practice implies an acknowledgment, that the civil power has a right to set one religious sect up above another, else why need we give certificates to them any more than they to us? It is a tacit allowance that they have a right to make laws about such things, which we believe in our consciences they have not. For,

2. By the foregoing address to our legislature, and their committees report thereon, it is evident, that they claim a right to tax us from civil obligation, as being the representatives of the people. But how came a civil community by any ecclesiastical power? how came the kingdoms of this world to have a right to govern in Christ’s kingdom which is not of this world!

3. That constitution not only emboldens people to judge the liberty of other men’s consciences, and has carried them so far as to tell our general assembly, that they conceived it to be a duty they owed to God and their country, not to be dispensed with, to lay before them the springs of their neighbour’s actions; but it also requires something of the same nature from us. Their laws require us annually to certify to them, what our belief is concerning the conscience of every person that assembles with us, as the condition of their being exempted from taxes to other’s worship. And only because our brethren in Bellingham, left that clause about the conscience out of their certificates last year, a number of their society who live at Mendon were taxed, and lately suffered the spoiling of their goods to uphold pedobaptist worship.

4. The scheme we oppose evidently tends to destroy the purity and life of religion; for the inspired apostle assures us, that the church is espoused as a chaste virgin to Christ, and is obliged to be subject to him in every thing, as a true wife is to her husband. Now the most chaste domestic obedience, does not at all interfere with any lawful subjection to civil authority; but for a woman to admit the highest ruler in a nation into her husband’s place, would be adultery or whoredom; and how often are mens inventions about worship so called in the sacred oracles? And does it not greatly concern us all, earnestly to search out and put away such evils, as we would desire to escape the awful judgments that such wickedness has brought on other nations! Especially if we consider that not only the purity, but also the very life and being of religion among us is concerned therein; for ’tis evident that Christ has given as plain laws to determine what the duty of people is to his ministers, as he has the duty of ministers to his people; and most certainly he is as able to enforce the one as the other. The common plea of our opponents is, that people will not do their duty if rulers do not enforce it; but does not the whole book of God clearly shew, that ministers as often fail of doing their duty as the people do? And where is the care of rulers to punish ministers for their unfaithfulness? They often talk about equality in these affairs, but where does it appear! As Christ is the head of all principality and power; so the not holding the head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministred, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God, but bringing in an earthly power between Christ and his people, has been the grand source of anti-christian abominations, and of settling men down in a form of godliness, while they deny the power thereof. Has not this earthly scheme prevailed so far in our land, as to cause many ministers, instead of taking heed to the ministry received from the Lord; and instead of watching for souls as those who must give an account, rather to act as if they were not accountable to any higher power, than that of the men who support them? and on the other hand, how do many people behave as if they were more afraid of the collector’s warrant, and of an earthly prison, than of Him who sends his ministers to preach his gospel, and says, He that receiveth whomsoever I send, receiveth me; but declares, That it shall be more tolerable in the day of judgment for Sodom, than for those who receive them not? Yea, as if they were more afraid of an earthly power than of our great King and Judge, who can this night require the soul of him that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich towards God; and will sentence all either to heaven or hell, according as they have treated Him well or ill, in his ministers and members.

5. The custom which they want us to countenance, is very hurtful to civil society: for by the law of Christ every man, is not only allowed, but also required, to judge for himself, concerning the circumstantials as well as the essentials, of religion, and to act according to the full persuasion of his own mind; and he contracts guilt to his soul if he does the contrary. Rom. 14. 5, 23. What a temptation then does it lay for men to contract such guilt, when temporal advantages are annexed to one persuasion, and disadvantages laid upon another? i.e. in plain terms, how does it tend to hypocrisy and lying? than which, what can be worse to human society! Not only so, but coercive measures about religion also tend to provoke to emulation, wrath and contention, and who can describe all the mischiefs of this nature, that such measures have produced in our land! But where each person, and each society, are equally protected from being injured by others, all enjoying equal liberty, to attend and support the worship which they believe is right, having no more striving for mastery or superiority than little children (which we must all come to, or not enter into the kingdom of heaven) how happy are it’s effects in civil society? In the town of Boston they enjoy something of these blessings, and why may not the country have the same liberty? The ministers who have had the chief hand in stirring up rulers to treat us as they have done, yet have sometimes been forced to commend the liberty we plead for.


Source: Isaac Backus (1724-1806). Excerpt from his 1773 sermon “An Appeal to the Public for Religious Liberty, Against the Oppressions of the Day. Backus is considered a leading orator of the “pulpit of the American Revolution”. Backus was a leading Baptist preacher during the era of the American Revolution who campaigned against state-established churches in New England; he also served as a delegate from Middleborough to the Massachusetts ratifying convention, which ratified the United States Constitution in 1788. He voted in favor of ratification.

Wifeplay: Sleeping Nude

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10 Benefits of Sleeping Naked You Probably Didn’t Know

Sleeping is one of the most important things we do every night. Getting the right amount of sleep has an untold number of health benefits and not getting enough sleep is a serious problem in many countries around the world. Did you know that you can get additional benefits by sleeping naked? Here are some benefits of sleeping in the nude:

1. It is easier

When you don’t have to worry about sleeping in clothes, things start to get easier. You don’t have to buy pajamas, which can save you money. You have less clothes to wash and less clothes to put away. You may have to clean your bed sheets more often, but not nearly as often as you’d have to wash your pajamas when you run out.

2. It forces you to be ready to go more often

Some people get off of work, change into their pajamas, and use this as an excuse to stay home the rest of the evening. This can lead to a more sedentary lifestyle, which has been attributed to things like weight gain. When you keep your regular clothes on, you tend to go out more often and that’s a good thing.

3. It can make you feel happier and more free

Just imagine the feeling of laying in bed naked. You’re free of your pants and underwear. Women, you’re not wearing a constrictive bra. It’s just you sandwiched between two cool sheets. The feeling just makes you want to smile and it makes you feel more free. Everyone can use that kind of good feeling every now and then, and it may even help you be happier as a person.

4. Skin-on-skin contact is the best.

If you’re married, or living with your significant other, sleeping naked gives a greater chance of skin-on-skin contact, especially when it comes to cuddling. This kind of contact can also lead to a more active sex life. All of this releases copious amounts of oxytocin, which is the neurotransmitter that helps you feel those good feelings about your significant other.

5. It could lead to better sleep

Let’s revisit the scenario I described above. There are no drawstrings or clothes getting tangled in sheets. You don’t have to worry about shirts getting twisted. All of these distractions go away when you sleep naked and it may help you get better, deeper sleep. You don’t need science to tell you that better, deeper sleep only helps you be healthier.

6. It can help your skin

For once your body gets to breathe. Your private parts, armpits, and feet are generally restricted all day and are often covered by multiple layers, even in the summer time. Give those parts a chance to air out and breathe. This can lower the risk of skin diseases, like athlete’s foot, that result from wet, restricted skin.

7. Helps you regulate your cortisol

Cortisol is a very strange chemical in the body but it can do a lot of damage. When you sleep naked, it helps keep your body temperature at the optimal ranges so your body can better create cortisol. If you sleep overheated your cortisol levels tend to stay high, even after you wake up. This can lead to increased anxiety, cravings for bad food, weight gain, and more terrible things. Sleep naked so you can keep your body temperature down and sleep well so your body can properly produce and regulate cortisol.

8. Balances your melatonin and growth hormone

Continuing along that same vein, keeping your sleeping environment below 70 degrees (F) every night can help your body regulate its melatonin and growth hormone levels. These chemicals help the body do things like prevent aging and are essential to good health. When you sleep in clothes, your body heats up and prevents effective use of these hormones. In other words, sleeping with clothes on makes you grow old faster.

9. It can keep your sex organs happier

For men, the cooler sleeping conditions allows your testes to remain at a cooler temperature. This helps keep your sperm healthy and your reproductive systems functioning as normal. For women, the cooler and more airy sleeping conditions can actually help prevent yeast infections. Yeast grows better in warm, moist conditions. When it’s cooler and dryer, the growth of yeast is prevented.

10. Sleeping in the summer is more bearable

Summertime is a tricky time to get good sleep. If you don’t have air conditioning, then you may find your bedroom a bit stuffy at night. Shedding those bedtime clothes can help the bedroom feel more comfortable. You may even be able to turn the A/C off on those cooler nights, which can save you a few bucks on your electricity bill. Don’t wake up drenched in sweat again because your thermostat is downstairs and the hot air expands up to your bedroom where the thermostat can’t read the warm temperatures.

With these tips in mind, it’s time to start taking off your clothes at night! Of course, there are times where clothes are preferable. If you are ill or it’s cold outside, then you should sleep with clothes on to help you stay warm and prevent further illness. Otherwise, go commando!

Original article: Benefits of Sleeping in the Nude

 

4 Reasons Sleeping Naked Makes You Healthier And Wealthier

What if I told you in just 10 seconds a day, you can sleep better, make more money, reduce stress, and lose weight? Sleeping naked can do all these things and more. All you have to do is take off your clothes. While there are countless strategies floating around out there to help you improve in these areas, none is as simple—and many are less effective—as stripping down before you go to sleep.

Since only 8% of people sleep naked, most everyone can discover the benefits of sleeping in the buff. This may sound far-fetched, but hear me out before you throw those cozy flannel pajamas on.

1. You Sleep Better Naked

We’ve always known that quality sleep is good for your brain, but recent research from the University of Rochester demonstrates exactly how so. The study found that when you sleep your brain removes toxic proteins from its neurons that are by-products of neural activity when you’re awake. The catch here is that your brain can only adequately remove these toxic proteins when you have sufficient quality sleep. When you don’t get high-quality, deep sleep, the toxic proteins remain in your brain cells, wreaking havoc and ultimately impairing your ability to think. This slows your ability to process information and problem solve, kills your creativity, and increases your emotional reactivity (something you can measure with an emotional intelligence test).

Researchers at the University of Amsterdam found that lowering your skin temperature increases the depth of your sleep and reduces the number of times you wake up in the night. Stripping down to your birthday suit is a great way to lower your skin temperature without changing the temperature of the room.

2. Sleeping Naked Reduces Stress

We all know that prolonged stress is bad news. It suppresses your immune system and increases your risk of heart disease, depression, and obesity in addition to decreasing your cognitive performance. Stress throws your cortisol levels out of whack. Proper rest helps to restore normal cortisol levels, which improves your stress level regardless of what’s happening around you. As described in the section above, sleeping naked will help you to get a better night’s sleep.

3. Sleeping Naked Is Healthier

Sleeping naked has a slew of health benefits, including helping you to lose weight. A study conducted by the U.S. National Institutes of Health found that keeping yourself cool while you sleep speeds the body’s metabolism because your body creates more brown fat to keep you warm. Brown fat produces heat by burning calories (300 times more heat than any organ in the body), and this boosts your metabolism all day long to help you lose weight. In addition to the metabolic effects of sleeping in the buff, removing your clothes improves blood circulation, which is good for your heart and muscles. The quality sleep you’ll enjoy also increases the release of growth hormone and melatonin, both of which have anti-aging benefits.

4. Sleeping Naked Builds Confidence

Confidence doesn’t just feel good; it’s the pillar of success. It pushes you to try new things, take on challenges, and persevere in the face of adversity. A University of Melbourne study found that confident people earn higher wages and get promoted more often than their less confident counterparts. Sleeping naked makes you more comfortable in your own skin. As your comfort with your body increases, so does your self-esteem and confidence.

Bringing It All Together

The benefits of sleeping naked are many—so many that you owe it to yourself to give it a try.

From Forbes: Benefits of Sleeping Naked

 

A great perk of marriage.

Top 21 Pet Peeves

  1. Locked doors
  2. People who interrupt or talk over you constantly
  3. People who do not listen
  4. People who are slow (slow talkers, slow drivers, slow reasoners)
  5. Unnecessary disorder (hoarders, for example)
  6. Cables
  7. Idle talk (repeated questions, stating the obvious)
  8. People who are stupid or inexcusably ignorant on a matter
  9. Irrational thinking (feelings masquerading as analysis)
  10. Noise and intrusions (loud clubs, concerts, deaf people watching television, constant interruptions)
  11. People who are overly ceremonial on trivial things
  12. Deception (failing to honor your contracts, deceit, hypocrisy)
  13. Cats
  14. People who are inert or perpetually distracted or disoriented (accommodating misery, lack of ambition)
  15. Posers
  16. Transitions
  17. People who are imprecise
  18. People who are unimaginative (not creative)
  19. Bureaucrats & bureaucracies
  20. Overlords (people who promote political theories, religious models, or social systems designed to dominate people: Marxism, communism, socialism, Regressive Left, fascism, racism, chauvinism, Darwinian theory, false religions)
  21. Unwanted watchers (people who don’t want to participate but just watch you do something: design, working out, reading, whatever—go the &^#$ away)

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.