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While I myself do not believe in any form of a higher being, I respect a person’s right to do so. Hence, when someone denigrates a religious symbol, say like Sinead O’Connor tearing up a picture of the Pope on national television, I admit it, I cringe.

I’ve been cringing most of the morning after seeing advance press for the release of Spiritual Water, by Spiritual Brands, Inc. I think I’m going to let this ad copy for one of the brand’s line, “Formula J”, speak for itself:

NOW IS THE PERFECT TIME TO MAKE A CHANGE!
Do you need Jesus in your life? Do you want to have Jesus with you thru the day? Grab a cold Formula J’ Spiritual Water bottle, read the prayer, believe in God, believe in yourself and the sky’s the limit…

FORMULA J’ PURIFIED DRINKING WATER

crisp, fresh drinking water that will make your day…
Read the Prayer…
Drink the Water…
Believe in God !
Believe in Yourself !

Oh My Jesus
O my Jesus, forgive us of our sins. Save us from the fires of hell.
Lead all souls into heaven, especially those in most need of thy mercy.
Amen.
(FATIMA PRAYER)

Dontcha just love the name? “Formula J”! It’s so street.

There’s also a version of the prayer in Spanish and a promise that .10 cents of every bottle sold will be donated to the “Spiritual Foundation” where they will help children in need. You can buy their entire line in the refreshing dominions (I say dominion because I don’t see how they can call them flavors) of Defense, Control, Energy, Strength, Power, Refresh, Balance, Focus, Essential, Freedom, and the Spiritual Water Mix-Pack. There’s no listing of special ingredients or claim of the water being blessed. Just purified. So you basically, you’re buying bottled water that could very easily come from your kitchen tap (through a water filter, of course) with a prayer imprinted on the label.

Wow.

So let’s do some math here: that’s $2.50 gross revenue on the bottle, since they do plan to sell it in stores, let’s give the benefit of the doubt and say they make $1.25 revenue per bottle at wholesale. It more than likely costs about .39 for water and packaging, and if they’re smart, they already built in the $0.10 donation for overhead…so that’s at least $0.76 per bottle. If you also figure in minimum buys for the stores (the minimum # of bottles a store has to buy from the company in order to carry the brand), that’s turning into some serious change. Not to mention what the stores themselves make off the people buying it. Damn, y’all, that’s one interesting racket, two and a half bucks for basically buying a prayer you could look up for free.

I’m sorry, but I can hardly keep myself from laughing as I write this. It’s so over-the-top. I’ve gotten so used to people who claim Jesus is always with them (akin to spiritual stalker?), so for this company to come along and claim you can also have Jesus with you as a beverage, is really spinning me into a tizzy.

I laugh, but really, I find it all pretty vile and in poor taste. And just to make sure I wasn’t overreacting to this, I showed it to Boss Man here at work (because he’s an uber-devout Catholic) and aside from closing his eyes and shaking his head he pointed toward the window, “See that big flaming rock in the sky? It’s gonna start hurtling towards us any second to wipe us all out!”

I think I can safely take it as a sign that he doesn’t approve of Spiritual Water either.

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