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American Resistance To Empire

Saudi War In Middle East Aims To Forcefully Convert Or Kill All Shia Muslims and Christians

[Anyone who can’t see by now that the real “Sunni Caliphate” will be “Greater Saudi Arabia” has not been paying attention to Saudi aggression in the region.  This has been Obama’s goal from the beginning, to hand control over the problematic Middle East to his Saudi patrons. 

(This seems to confirm the normally scoffed-at conspiracy theory, that it has been the Saudis, NOT THE JEWS, who have controlled this so-called “war on terror” from the beginning.)

  War-mongering king Salman has been arrogantly open about his intentions to cleanse the Middle East of Shiites and other religious apostates (this would include Christians, obviously), even whike he pretends to be fighting against the Caliphate of ISIS.  The Saudi royals and their Gulf subordinates have been creating their own Sunni Caliphate, right before our eyes.  The fact that the world’s only hope for humanitarianism, the United Nations, would allow a tribal Arab king to murder thousands of Shia Houthis while conducting its religious ethnic-cleansing operation on the rest of them is proof that human compassion is just another commodity that can be bought and sold like anything else.]

 We will destroy the Houthis if they do not come to reason [i.e., convert to Sunni Islam–ed.].”–Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel Al-Jubeir

[Such is the human condition, when laid bare before us. 
Where is God in this equation?]

[SEE:UN Capitulation To Saudi Demands Equals Partnership In Ethnic-Cleansing of Middle East]

Religious eugenics

Russia-Today

How Saudi Arabia is sponsoring a frightening new movement in the ME

Catherine Shakdam

© Khaled Abdullah
Blanketed by its wealth and protected by political alliances, Saudi Arabia has covertly run and promoted a new movement in the Middle East: religious eugenics, under the false pretense of opposing the rise of Iran. From Syria to Bahrain and Yemen the evidence is overwhelming.

Earlier this August, the Red Cross added its voice to those of other humanitarian and rights groups in its condemnation of Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen, lifting the lid on Riyadh’s little house of horrors in southern Arabia.

In no uncertain terms Peter Maurer, the head of the international Red Cross told reporters he had seldom witnessed such degree of devastation. He said: “Yemen after five months looks like Syria after five years … The images I have from Sanaa and Aden remind of what I have seen in Syria.”

He stressed “the firepower with which this war is fought on the ground and in the air is causing more suffering than in other societies, which are stronger and where infrastructures are better off and people are wealthier and have reserves and can escape.”

A country in ruins, Yemen is also a nation in permanent mourning, as every day its people are relentlessly slain – casualties of a violent and murderous colonial war – the latest victims of Riyadh’s expansionist military campaign in the Middle East.

According to official UNICEF tallies, “close to 2,800 people have been killed and almost 13,000 people injured (including 279 children killed and 402 injured, respectively). An estimated 1 million people have been internally displaced (an increase of 122 percent since the crisis began), and some 400,000 people have sought protection in neighboring countries.”

While such figures are horrifying, they fall short of the truth. Agencies on the ground have already said that well over 500 children have been killed in Saudi-led air raids, most specifically in northern Yemen, where the war has been most devastating and aggressive. On average, children account for a quarter of all deaths and casualties.

For those who have managed to find shelter, living conditions are catastrophic. With no water, no electricity, little food and no access to health facilities ten million children are at risk of disease and starvation – again, North Yemen has suffered the brunt of this crisis.

Never in its history has Yemen experienced such a degree of pain and utter despair. But while wars are generally ugly affairs since they require their fill of blood before the canons finally fall silent, Saudi Arabia’s campaign in Yemen is far from ordinary.

But not only that, Saudi Arabia’s foreign policy in the Middle East is betraying a disturbing and rather ominous covert agenda, one which resonates with ethnic engineering and religious eugenics.

And if so far few have connected the dots, their hands tied by Riyadh’s overbearing and overarching control on media outlets and the grand political narrative, it is high time we learn to recognize Al Saud’s campaign for what it really is: a concerted effort to cleanse the region of all religious minorities, beginning with Shia Islam, its self-appointed nemesis.

To put it in simple terms – under Saudi Arabia’ suffocating grip, religious minorities are dying a slow and painful death.

From Syria to Bahrain, the kingdom’s eugenics campaign threatens the region’s religious and ethnic patrimonies, in a fashion reminiscent of Nazi Germany, when Jews and Gypsies were labeled undesirables.

Saudi Arabia is now building 600 mile wall to keep dangerous people out. What a concept! #tcot#pjnet#FoxNewspic.twitter.com/u056SB7HxW

In an interview this April, the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Adel Al-Jubeir lifted the veil on Riyadh’s determination to carry through its agenda, no matter the price, no matter the impact. He asserted: “This campaign is having a huge impact in Yemen and it is not over yet. For us failure is not an option. We will destroy the Houthis if they do not come to reason.”

If subtitles were running they would read – the Houthis will be destroyed because they represent a religious challenge to Wahhabism’s hegemony in the region. The Houthis, and the majority of all northerners in Yemen are Zaidis, a branch of Shia Islam.

Is it then a surprise that while South Yemen has benefited from humanitarian aid, North Yemen has witnessed a spike in violence, its seaports targeted to prevent food and medicine to be ferried in? Riyadh is quite simply profiling aid to carry out its religious cleansing, punishing millions for their rejection of Riyadh’s religion.

Saudi Arabia is an absolute theocracy, and as such its very raison d’ être is rooted within its violent and reactionary interpretation of Islam: Wahhabism, the ideology which inspired the likes of Al Qaeda and Islamic State. One of the main tenets of Wahhabism actually calls for the destruction of all religious sects, Islamic or otherwise. For Wahhabis there can be no greater glory than to massacre “apostates.”

And while Riyadh’s neo-eugenics movement has taken on different forms, operating under various denominations depending on the countries it has targeted, the underlying current has been the destruction of religious pluralism.

Let me ask you this: Is there a real difference between Manama’s campaign to strip Shia Bahrainis from their nationality because the House of Al Khalifa seeks to eliminate all political and religious competition, and Islamic State’s murderous rampage against religious minorities in Iraq and Syria? And though Bahrain’s campaign might appear more “elegant” in that it is more covert and pernicious, the intent remains the same.

From the language used to the policies it has carried out in the Middle East, Riyadh has pushed the sectarian card, christening the resistance movement against its eugenics movement, the so-called Shia crescent threat.

The real threat here lies with Riyadh’s twisted crusade and sickening sectarian agenda.

Catherine Shakdam
Catherine Shakdam is a political analyst, writer and commentator for the Middle East with a special focus on radical movements and Yemen. Her writings have been published in world-renowned publications such as Foreign Policy Journal, Mintpress News, the Guardian, Your Middle East, Middle East Monitor, Middle East Eye, Open Democracy, Eurasia Review and many more. A regular pundit on RT, she has also contributed her analyses to Etejah TV, IRIB radio, Press TV and NewsMax TV. Director of Programs at the Shafaqna Institute for Middle Eastern Studies and consultant for Anderson Consulting, her research and work on Yemen were used by the UN Security Council in relation to Yemen looted funds in 2015.

UN Capitulation To Saudi Demands Equals Partnership In Ethnic-Cleansing of Middle East

“the U.N. de facto institutionalized aid segregation by allowing humanitarian relief to be conditional to certain criteria: political affiliation and religious orientation.

With Yemen set as a precedent, who’s to say that a similar setup will not be replicated in other countries in the region — mainly, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain and Libya?”

source

[This is the standard by which Middle Eastern human beings will be granted the right to eat by the Royal Saudi Caliphate.  Anyone who can’t see the real “Sunni Caliphate” by now has not been paying attention to Saudi aggression in the region.  War-mongering king Salman has been arrogantly open about his intentions to cleanse the Middle East of Shiites and other religious apostates (this would include Christians, obviously). even whike he pretends to be fighting against the Caliphate of ISIS.  The Saudi royals and their Gulf subordinates have been creating a Saudi Caliphate, right before our eyes.  The fact that the world’s only hope for humanitarianism, the United Nations, would allow a tribal Arab king to enforce Draconian standards on simple aid intended to keep civilians alive (amidst a hot, desert war), is proof that human compassion is just another commodity that can be bought and sold like anything else. 

Such is the human condition, when laid bare before us. 
Where is God in this equation?]

Saudi Arabia opened its checkbook in response to a U.N. appeal for funds to cover the most urgent humanitarian aid to Yemen. But that aid would come at a steep price and with more than a few strings attached.

A Yemeni man looks at a World Food Program ship at the port of Aden, Yemen, Tuesday, July 21, 2015. The WFP ship carrying badly needed aid arrived in Yemen's war-torn southern city of Aden on Tuesday, the first vessel chartered by the U.N. agency to berth there since Saudi-led airstrikes on Shiite rebels in the country began in March. (AP Photo/Ahmed Sameer)

SANAA, Yemen — Five months have passed since Saudi Arabia declared war on Yemen, and for all its might, political resolve and military arsenal, the kingdom has yet to bring the poorest nation on the Arabian Peninsula to heel.

Its institutions in tatters, its military apparatus reduced to rubbles, and with no economy to speak of, Yemen’s imminent collapse has been foretold time and time again by experts and state officials. Yet these predictions have not quite come to fruition.

In its match against Goliath, David is resisting. In rallies, demonstrations and even an open letter signed by 18 Yemen scholars and experts living in the United States and Britain, tens of thousands of Yemenis and others around the world have decried Riyadh’s actions, calling for an end to all violence.

Yet this dedication to opposing Riyadh’s actions doesn’t mean Yemenis aren’t suffering. The World Health Organization issued a statement in June, warning that a “major health crisis is unfolding in Yemen, where hospitals have been destroyed, health workers killed and critical shortages of food, medical supplies and fuel are causing large-scale suffering.”

In early July, the United Nations declared the situation in Yemen to be the highest level of humanitarian emergency. According to a U.N. report published July 7, over 1,500 civilians have been killed, 3,600 have been injured, and over a million have been displaced in the ongoing conflict.

A “major health crisis is unfolding in Yemen, where hospitals have been destroyed, health workers killed and critical shortages of food, medical supplies and fuel are causing large-scale suffering.”

-World Health Organization

By U.N. estimates, about 80 percent of all Yemenis — more than 20 million people — are in need of humanitarian aid.

In late March, Amnesty International confirmed the deaths of at least six children under the age of 10 during a Saudi-led air raid that killed 25 people. The report read: “The organization spoke to medical personnel at four different hospitals where the dead were taken after being pulled from the rubble of 14 houses that were hit in a residential neighbourhood near the city’s international airport.”

Already the poorest and most vulnerable population in the Peninsula and arguably the Greater Middle East, Yemenis have seen their livelihoods and freedom of movement disintegrate under Saudi Arabia’s war momentum. In late April, Saudi Arabia bombed Sanaa International Airport, effectively trapping civilians within Yemen’s borders.

Despite mounting evidence of abuses and war crimes, it would take the international rights community several months to stand up to the oil giant. On July 27, Human Rights Watch unequivocally slammed Saudi Arabia for a litany of human rights violations. The report reads:

Saudi-led coalition airstrikes that killed at least 65 civilians, including 10 children, and wounded dozens in the Yemeni port city of Mokha on July 24, 2015, are an apparent war crime. Starting between 9:30 and 10 p.m., coalition airplanes repeatedly struck two residential compounds of the Mokha Steam Power Plant, which housed plant workers and their family members.”

With fierce battles raging across Yemen, and as warplanes continue to rain lead onto heavily populated areas, Saudi Arabia has been looking for innovative ways to exert pressure onto the resistance movement. It is now withholding humanitarian aid to Yemen’s civilians to tame the growing insurrection movement against its rule and thus secure victory in the face of international law — all under the guise of the United Nations.

The kingdom is holding hostage not just Yemen but to some extent the international community, using the United Nations’ humanitarian institutions to wage war. It’s using institutions meant to offer relief as a means of weaponizing aid.

Hassan Jayache, a senior leader of the Houthi movement, which took control of Yemen earlier this year, told MintPress News that local NGOs have found themselves caught in a political web, forced to surrender their neutrality to secure not just funding but access to areas where aid is needed.

“The Saudis have exerted political pressures onto local NGOs and international aid organizations, demanding that aid be restricted to pre-approved segments of the population, based on political affiliations and according to religious criteria,” Jayache said.

“In other words, Al Saud has decided to starve the Shias of Yemen, hoping to break the Houthis’ momentum.”

Turning aid agencies into weapons of war

Mohammed Al-Emad, a Yemen-based journalist and political commentator, says Saudi Arabia called on several media organizations in the Middle East, the United States and Europe, demanding that “coverage on Yemen be sanitized and in keeping with Riyadh’s chosen political narrative.”

Wikileaks Comic While Al-Emad’s claims could be considered bias, WikiLeaks published a series of confidential cables pointing to systematic media/PR manipulation on the part of the Saudis.

But if the international community had been standing silent before Saudi Arabia’s war crimes, exploiting what Al-Emad describes as a convenient media blackout to avoid addressing some sticky legal points, Riyadh’s move against the U.N. might prove one indiscretion too many for anyone to ignore.

The work of King Salman and his allies to sabotage U.N.-organized aid to Yemen started on April 17 in the wake of a U.N. emergency flash appeal for $274 million to respond to the most pressing humanitarian needs over the following three months.

Speaking on Yemenis’ hardship, Humanitarian Coordinator Johannes Van Der Klaauw stressed:

“The devastating conflict in Yemen takes place against the backdrop of an existing humanitarian crisis that was already one of the largest and most complex in the world … Thousands of families have now fled their homes as a result of the fighting and airstrikes. Ordinary families are struggling to access health care, water, food and fuel – basic requirements for their survival.”

Saudi Arabia immediately volunteered the exact amount requested. But the aid would come with strings attached.

Vice News reported in June that Saudi officials leaned on U.N. officials to sabotage aid deliveries, threatening to close the kingdom’s checkbook should U.N. agencies deny Riyadh’s requests.

Based on a U.N. memo obtained by Vice, the media outlet reported that the Saudi government imposed unprecedented conditions on aid agencies, demanding that assistance be limited to Saudi-approved areas and confined to strictly Sunni civilian populations.

A Yemeni volunteer carries bags of rice to displaced people

“If such despicable logic can somehow be expected from a power which has wielded sectarianism to sow discord and from chaos rise a tyrant, what of the UN, an institution which claims itself impartial and fair?” Hasan Sufyani, a leading political analyst at the Sana’a Institute for Arabic Studies, asked MintPress.

He added:

If humanitarian organizations are to be subjected to the rules of realpolitik then truly the world has reached a dark chapter in its history and reverted back to organized barbarism.

Still, no well-thinking Western powers has thought to challenge Saudi Arabia’s war crimes in Yemen. In a world system where capitalism reigns king, the rich and haughty stand above the pettiness of the rule of law.”

As a rule of thumb, and to avoid political entanglements, humanitarian organizations tend to shy away from donations which come with strings attached, especially when they fall under the umbrella of the OCHA.

Meant as a supranational institution, OCHA was never intended to be manipulated as an instrument of pressure, legal absolution or, in the case of Yemen, a weapon of war.

$244M, split nine ways

Playing aid as both a military tactic and a PR exercise to redeem its atrocious human rights record and whitewash its war crimes in Yemen, Saudi Arabia has held the U.N. hostage to its policies.

Such shadowing and lobbying on the part of Saudi Arabia had Yemeni officials waving the political red flag.

Ali al-Bukhaiti, a prominent member of the Houthis’ political arm, told MintPress his office has vehemently denounced Riyadh’s attempts to “buy the U.N. out to better corner Sana’a government and foil the resistance movement.”

Yet it appears the train was already far too out of the station for anyone to hit the brakes.

By late June, amid reports of a worsening humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen, the Saudi government finally announced that out of its initial pledge of $274 million, $244 million would be divided among nine U.N. agencies.

On the heels of this announcement Stephen O’Brien, the U.N. undersecretary for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, sent a letter to the Interagency Standing Committee, a global humanitarian coordinating body, which includes both U.N. humanitarian agencies and outside NGOs.

Vice News confirmed the letter was attached to a Saudi press release announcing the nine-way cut, explaining how the funds would go through the recently created King Salman Center for Relief Humanitarian Works (KSC).

“Having agreed to the overall envelopes, however, the KSC would like to negotiate individual Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with each recipient agency,” O’Brien told Vice, openly admitting to Riyadh’s lobby.

Boys carry relief supplies to their families who fled fighting in the southern city of Aden, during a food distribution effort by Yemeni volunteers, in Taiz, Yemen.

“Interestingly few media outlets picked up on this Orwellian development! After unilaterally and, let’s be frank, after illegally declaring war on Yemen, the Saudi government wants also to dictate how humanitarian relief is distributed in the very country it is attacking,” Sheikh al-Matari, the head of Yemen’s Rasoul Akram Foundation, an aid organization, told MintPress.

Vice News quoted a U.N. aid official in Yemen as saying: “The UN has punted and handed off the problems to these agencies. I’ve never seen that before.”

The official continued:

“The charitable way of saying it is this is a compromise — the less charitable way of saying it is that they folded. It’s really unusual for a single donor to have any substantive role once they contribute funds, let alone negotiate individual MoU’s with agencies.”

When asked about this very public U.N. capitulation before Al Saud’s millions, O’Brien attempted to rationalize the situation by arguing a massive deficit funding gap.

O’Brien wrote: “With regard to NGOs, I am aware that there are sensitivities in receiving funding directly from the KSC and we therefore must work actively to mobilize additional funds to be allocated directly, or via the Pooled Fund, to our front-line partners.”

Yet, as al-Matari noted:

“That’s only half of the story. What O’Brien is not telling is that by accepting Saudi Arabia’s conditions on aid distribution and aid funding in relation to Yemen, the U.N. de facto institutionalized aid segregation by allowing humanitarian relief to be conditional to certain criteria: political affiliation and religious orientation.

With Yemen set as a precedent, who’s to say that a similar setup will not be replicated in other countries in the region — mainly, Syria, Iraq, Bahrain and Libya?”

‘Institutionalizing war crimes’

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, left, meets with King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, right

“From the onset of this conflict King Salman has walked outside international law. There is nothing remotely legal about attacking a sovereign nation. The argument Saudi Arabia aimed to preemptively strike Yemen in order to stop the so-called ‘Shia crescent’ from further strengthening its hold on the region is both legally erroneous and redundant. What is troubling is the speed at which the kingdom is institutionalizing war crimes,” Al-Emad, the journalist and political commentator based in Yemen, told MintPress.

Al-Emad added: “It is one thing to declare war against a country and another to select a segment of population for annihilation. How long before Saudi Arabia’s ill intentions against all Zaidis and Shias in Yemen are understood for what they are? Genocidal.”

Although no legal action has been taken against Saudi Arabia, the kingdom’s humanitarian and human rights violations in Yemen have come to define the very nature of its war on the tiny, impoverished nation.

Even the sectarian aspect of Riyadh‘s wrath has transpired in official reports, giving weight to Yemenis’ mounting accusations of ethnic cleansing. The Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights raised concerns in this area, as well, as a U.N. report issued in July notes: “The UN rights office is also acutely worried about increasing attacks against places of worship, pointing to the targeting of five Zaydi mosques with car bombs over the past few weeks as an alarming trend to create sectarian divisions.”

Additionally, Cécile Pouilly, spokesperson for the OHCHR, confirmed mounting abuses against civilians when she explained: “Since 17 June, there has been further destruction of civilian infrastructure, with at least 36 buildings, including hospitals, schools, court houses, power generation facilities and communications institutions partially or totally damaged in the governorates of Sana’a, Aden, Taiz, Al-Jawf, Al-Mahwit, and Hajjah.”

The Saudis have not been alone in violating international law, though. The Houthis have also committed their share of war crimes. In May, for example, Human Rights Watch accused pro-Houthi forces of killing civilians and holding aid workers hostage in the southern seaport of Aden. But it is the sectarian intent and systematicity behind Riyadh’s military campaign which has rights activists ringing the alarm.

Speaking to MintPress, Hussain Abu Salem, a human rights activist based in Saada, a northern province of Yemen, located south of Saudi Arabia, who personally documented Saudi air raids against identified Zaidi-targets in northern Yemen, compared Riyadh’s actions against Yemen’s Zaidi community to Israel’s attacks against Palestinians:

“Saudi Arabia knowingly and willingly targets Zaidi villages and Zaidi monuments. It seeks the destruction of Yemen Zaidi heritage. It wants to surgically remove all Zaidi Yemenis from political, religious, economic and social life. The kingdom is following in the footsteps of Israel in all impunity. It is exactly the same logic, the same methods and of course the same justifications.”

“This is the thing about right violations,” he added, “when the world does nothing to impose the law, when the powerful can oppress the weak, then injustice becomes the rule of law.”

Was Jesus Christ An Anti-Jewish Roman PsyOp?

Jesus_070

We Invented Jesus Christ’ Why Governments Create False Histories and False Gods.

Ancient Confession Found: ‘We Invented Jesus Christ’

LisaLeaks  Madness magnolias

Biblical scholars will be appearing at the ‘Covert Messiah‘ Conference at Conway Hall in London on the 19th of October to present this controversial discovery to the British public.

“[Jesus Christ] may be the only fictional character in literature whose entire life story can be traced to other sources.”

American Biblical scholar Joseph Atwill will be appearing before the British public for the first time in London on the 19th of October to present a controversial new discovery: ancient confessions recently uncovered now prove, according to Atwill, that the New Testament was written by first-century Roman aristocrats and that they fabricated the entire story of Jesus Christ. His presentation will be part of a one-day symposium entitled “Covert Messiah” at Conway Hall in Holborn.

Although to many scholars his theory seems outlandish, and is sure to upset some believers, Atwill regards his evidence as conclusive and is confident its acceptance is only a matter of time. “I present my work with some ambivalence, as I do not want to directly cause Christians any harm,” he acknowledges, “but this is important for our culture. Alert citizens need to know the truth about our past so we can understand how and why governments create false histories and false gods. They often do it to obtain a social order that is against the best interests of the common people.”

Atwill asserts that Christianity did not really begin as a religion, but a sophisticated government project, a kind of propaganda exercise used to pacify the subjects of the Roman Empire. “Jewish sects in Palestine at the time, who were waiting for a prophesied warrior Messiah, were a constant source of violent insurrection during the first century,” he explains. “When the Romans had exhausted conventional means of quashing rebellion, they switched to psychological warfare. They surmised that the way to stop the spread of zealous Jewish missionary activity was to create a competing belief system. That’s when the ‘peaceful’ Messiah story was invented. Instead of inspiring warfare, this Messiah urged turn-the-other-cheek pacifism and encouraged Jews to ‘give onto Caesar’ and pay their taxes to Rome.”Tizian_014Was Jesus based on a real person from history? “The short answer is no,” Atwill insists, “in fact he may be the only fictional character in literature whose entire life story can be traced to other sources. Once those sources are all laid bare, there’s simply nothing left.” Atwill’s most intriguing discovery came to him while he was studying Wars of the Jews by Josephus [the only surviving first-person historical account of first-century Judea] alongside the New Testament. “I started to notice a sequence of parallels between the two texts,” he recounts. “Although it’s been recognized by Christian scholars for centuries that the prophesies of Jesus appear to be fulfilled by what Josephus wrote about in the First Jewish–Roman War, I was seeing dozens more. What seems to have eluded many scholars is that the sequence of events and locations of Jesus ministry are more or less the same as the sequence of events and locations of the military campaign of [Emperor] Titus Flavius as described by Josephus. This is clear evidence of a deliberately constructed pattern. The biography of Jesus is actually constructed, tip to stern, on prior stories, but especially on the biography of a Roman Caesar.”

How could this go unnoticed in the most scrutinized books of all time? “Many of the parallels are conceptual or poetic, so they aren’t all immediately obvious. After all, the authors did not want the average believer to see what they were doing, but they did want the alert reader to see it. An educated Roman in the ruling class would probably have recognized the literary game being played.” Atwill maintains he can demonstrate that “the Roman Caesars left us a kind of puzzle literature that was meant to be solved by future generations, and the solution to that puzzle is ‘We invented Jesus Christ, and we’re proud of it.’”

Is this the beginning of the end of Christianity? “Probably not,” grants Atwill, “but what my work has done is give permission to many of those ready to leave the religion to make a clean break. We’ve got the evidence now to show exactly where the story of Jesus came from. Although Christianity can be a comfort to some, it can also be very damaging and repressive, an insidious form of mind control that has led to blind acceptance of serfdom, poverty, and war throughout history. To this day, especially in the United States, it is used to create support for war in the Middle East.”

Atwill encourages skeptics to challenge him at Conway Hall, where after the presentations there is likely to be a lively Q&A session. Joining Mr.Atwill will be fellow scholar Kenneth Humphreys, author of the book “Jesus Never Existed.”

About Joseph Atwill: Joseph Atwill is the author of the best-selling book “Caesar’s Messiah” and its upcoming sequel “The Single Strand.”

Egypt Moves Against 55,000 Unlicensed “Islamist” Clerics To Stop “Illegal” Sermons

Mullah Taliban
[The great, hypocritical Saudi double-cross plan is to eliminate the illiterate preachers in Egypt, even though they preach the correct, Wahhabicized Saudi version of “Islam,” because they have become a threat to the State. Such armies of uneducated fanatics are vital elements of the Saudi/US strategy to undermine True Islam throughout the AfPak region, all of Central Asia and the Middle East.  The only difference between the ignorant “Islamist” preachers of Egypt and those who are running the Pakistani “Islamist” industry, is that the Egyptian Islamists stopped being part of the psywar solution and became the new problem.  In Pakistan and everywhere else where the Wahhabicized “Islamists” are trying to shake the ground, the radical “Islamists” are tools of the State security organs, helping the State keep the radicalized masses under control.  Obama’s “Islamists” are now out of control because their spiritual leaders stopped preaching for obedience and respect to the State authorities as administrators of Allah’s Plan, when they started calling for “jihad” against the “unbelievers.”  
The great mistake was in allowing the Pig of Qatar to take charge of the African and Middle East operations as part of the agreement made between him and the CIA to acquire Qatari financing for their misadventures.  Al Thani ignored the safegards against virulent extremism that had been put in place by the Saudis after their own native “Islamists” seized the Grand Mosque of Mecca.   All Saudi “mujahedeen” operations which they had run for the CIA consortium of intelligence agencies since the incident in 1979, have been tightly controlled and limited in scope.  The Pig gave them unrestrained opportunity to turn the Western aggressions against Libya, Mali and Syria into their own fanciful “jihads.”  Now that the Pig has been fired from the job, Bandar is left the thankless task of putting the Genie “back in the bottle,” bringing these crazed, armed fanatics back under agency control.  There are no signs of reeling-in the rabid Islamists in Syria, but there is plenty of evidence that Syria represents a personal jihad for Bandar.  Because of this, the non-believer rebels of the FSA are being shoved aside by Bandar’s personal “al-Qaeda” in Iraq army, a.k.a. “al Nusra,” which will give the Saudis control over the situation in Syria.  His False Flag chem weapons attack in Damascus was intended to tip the scales in the militants’ favor, until Russia and Syria embraced Kerry’s “Plan B.” 
In Egypt, where the Islamist mill is turning-out more radicals than the State can possibly control, “licensing” of proper courses of curriculum and instruction is the only reasonable step which can be made, in regaining control, despite the level of angst and chaos which the decision will generate.  (Maybe we should also try that here in America, for illiterate Christian preachers, and see how that works out.).  Now if they would only try something similar in Pakistan….Who knows, maybe that is what they already have planned next?]

Egypt bans 55,000 clerics in Islamist crackdown

MSN_news_logo

A ban on unlicensed preachers is a way to reduce the security threat in Egypt where hundreds have been killed in protests since July 3, an officials says.

 

Barring unlicensed clerics from preaching is a way to spread a moderate message of Islam and lower the threat to Egypt’s security, a minister says.

CAIRO — Egyptian authorities will bar 55,000 unlicensed clerics from preaching in mosques in the latest move against sympathizers of deposed Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, the minister of religious endowments said on Tuesday.

Egyptian authorities have been cracking down on Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood since the army toppled him July 3 following mass protests against his rule.

Minister of Endowments Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa said the clerics lack licenses to preach and were considered to be fundamentalist and a threat to the Egypt’s security.

Related: Egypt army attacks Sinai Islamists as militancy spreads

The ban will mainly target small unlicensed mosques or random praying areas. The idea is to spread a moderate message of Islam and keep Egyptians away from radical ideas.

“The decision is only meant to legalize the preaching process during Fridays’ mass prayers and make only those authorized to do it, do it,” Gomaa told Reuters.

Authorities moved to crush the Brotherhood following the overthrow of Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically leader. More than 2,000 Islamist activists have been arrested and most of the Brotherhood’s leaders, including Morsi, jailed on charges of inciting or taking part in violence. Some have also been accused of terrorism or murder.

Over the same period, more than 1,000 people have been killed in political violence. Most were protesters killed by security forces breaking up pro-Morsi camps in Cairo. About 100 were members of the security forces.

Islamist attacks, mainly targeting security forces, have risen sharply in Egypt since Morsi’s overthrow.

Pakistan’s Taliban Terrorists Prove Their Wahhabi Credentials By Bombing Father of Pakistan’s House

  pakistan-ziarat-Residency-Quaid-i-Azam-Mohammad-Ali-Jinnah-360

[It is typical Wahhabi terrorism against revered and symbolic targets, in their attempts to cover-up the truth about their pretend substitute for “True Islam.”  They cannot enforce their terrorist “Shariah” if the people know real Islam, this is why they blow-up monuments and mosques, and dig-up markers at cemetaries.  They want to destroy Islam by burying it under piles of Saudi dung.  In Saudi Arabia itself they bury history with development projects, the dozers and diggers work overtime to destroy revered relics, in order to cover them with a new history.]

Militants destroy Jinnah’s historic residence in Pakistan

times of india

PTI

Militants destroy Jinnah's historic residence in Pakistan
The militants targeted the Quaid-e-Azam residency in Ziarat, a holiday resort located about 120km from the provincial capital of Quetta.

ISLAMABAD: Militants on Saturday attacked a historic 121-year-old building in Pakistan’s southwestern Balochistan province that was used by the country’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah, killing a policeman and causing extensive damage to the structure.

The militants targeted the Quaid-e-Azam residency in Ziarat, a holiday resort located about 120km from the provincial capital of Quetta, at 1.15am.

They planted and set off four bombs and then opened fire. The explosions and gunfire triggered a blaze that was extinguished after four hours.

A policeman was killed in the shooting, police officials said. The wooden parts of the building, furniture and memorabilia associated with Jinnah were destroyed by the fire.

Footage on television showed that the roof of the building had collapsed and only its structure made of bricks was left intact.

District police chief Asghar Ali said a bomb disposal squad had found and defused six more bombs, each containing about three kilograms of explosives.

He said it took longer than expected for the fire to be controlled as there are no fire tenders in Ziarat. A fire tender sent from Quetta was used to put out the blaze.

Security forces cordoned off the area and launched a search operation though they were unable to trace the attackers.

The residency, built in 1892, was originally used as the summer residence of the agent of the British Governor General.

Jinnah spent the last days of his life in the building while suffering from tuberculosis and the structure was later declared a national monument.

Beyond The Unconscious—The Ultraconscious

[I apologize for the poor quality of the page snapshots posted below, but this is the only form that I could find this early MK Ultra document.  It has been repeatedly cited in articles on mind-control and it predates the exposure of the program in 1971.]

holographic-universe

Beyond The Unconscious: The Ultraconscious

STANLEY R. DEAN

American Journal of Psychiatry, Vol. 122, No. 4:471 October 1965.

legacy tobacco

103265967-103265971

 

 

 

 

 

 

Imran In Scathing Attack On Convenient “Islamist” Fazl–CHANGE PAKISTAN ON MAY 11

[Fazl and those like him, who treat the Islamic faith as a “convenient” political ladder to self-elevation are the bane of those with True Faith.  The Convenience of Political Islam for those slothful, evil men, who know neither morality nor honesty, is at the root of the global conflict within Islam itself.  The Saudis and those who feed at their trough have spread this corrupted message all over the Muslim world, while reinforcing its message with the largesse of treasure.  This has misled many.  Pakistani politicians have faithfully travelled this path for many decades.  It is time to change this equation, so that true democracy might really turn-out to be Pakistan’s salvation. 

VOTE MAY 11.]

Imran in scathing attack on Fazl

dawn

PESHAWAR: In sharp contrast to his Sharif-bashing in Punjab, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan on Saturday turned his guns towards JUI-F leader Maulana Fazlur Rehman, accusing him of exploiting the sacred name of Islam to reach the corridors of power.

Speaking at election rallies in a whirlwind tour of what is known as the Peshawar Valley, the PTI chief said that Maulana Fazlur Rehman was shedding crocodile’s tears and was befooling the people again in the name of Islam. The Maulana had always politicised Islam to serve his own interests, he alleged.

The towns Imran Khan visited were Charsadda, Mardan, Swabi and Buner.

He charged that Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Awami National Party, Nawaz Sharif and Asif Zardari were responsible for destruction of the country. The time, he said, had come to hold looters accountable. “The nation will reject the plunderers of national wealth on May 11.”

Addressing a public meeting in Nowshera, Imran Khan said that no corrupt leader or party would be able to face PTI’s tsunami on the election day. He said the enthusiasm of youth would change the country and make a new Pakistan.

Lashing out at the JUI-F chief, he said that for five years, Maulana Fazl had kept mum over the bloodshed of thousands of innocent Pakhtuns and remained hand in glove with President Asif Zardari to stick to power.

The PTI chief claimed that his forewarning against joining the US-led “war on terror” had come true. “I never said it was our war as it neither was nor ever will be.

Pakistan drew fire to the peril of its people by readily becoming America’s lieutenant in this war for no reason”, he said.

In Charsadda, Imran Khan said that after coming to power, the PTI would restore the dignity of Pakistan in international community, which he said was badly damaged by the previous governments.

He continued to target Maulana Fazlur Rehman, saying that the JUI-(F leader was responsible for the killings of thousands of people during the Afghan war. Maulana Fazl never spoke against US drone strikes and military operations in the country, Imran said, adding that the JUI-F leader had adopted a dubious policy to deceive the masses.

Addressing a rally in Swabi, Imran Khan said the Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz and the Pakistan People’s Party had dominated the country’s politics since 1988, but they had utterly failed to deliver the goods.

He said that the two major parties and their allies would taste a crushing defeat and the PTI tsunami would sweep them away from power corridors. “We are poised to say goodbye to all former political actors on May 11 and those who labelled us as Jew and Qadiani will not be able to re-enter the parliament to devour public money,” he said.

He bitterly criticised JUI-F leader Maulana Fazlur Rehman, President Asif Ali Zardari, Mian Nawaz Sharif and ANP president Asfandyar Wali Khan, calling them political actors and US stooges.

“They always look to the Americans’ nod and wink in all affairs,” he said. “If we are voted to power on May 11, we will neither remain under American influence nor work according to their agenda. “We oppose US drone strikes. If we are voted to power, there will be no drone attacks in Pakistan. The PTI will formulate an independent foreign policy,” he said.

He said that the former rulers indulged in corruption, looting national exchequer and inflicting a colossal loss to the country and its people. “This practice is not acceptable to PTI and the youth of the country have been awakened. Those who ruined the country could not rebuild it”, he said. “The PTI will make a new Pakistan where justice, peace and prosperity will prevail,” said Mr Khan.

YOUTH AND DREAM: In Buner, the PTI chief said the enthusiastic youths would make the dream of a new Pakistan come true on May 11.

He said that after coming to power the PTI would explore the local natural resources to end loadshedding and would create employment opportunities for the youth.

He pointed to the cheering crowd, saying that “these change-makers” will ensure a positive change on May 11.

In Mardan, Imran Khan said American drones would be shot down if his party was elected to power in the coming general elections.

All nominated candidates on three National Assembly and eight PK constituencies of Mardan were present on the occasion.

He said the PTI supporters had struggled and waited for the last 17 years to lay foundation of a new Pakistan and now the dawn was nigh as the people would witness the start of a new Pakistan on May 11.

He said the ANP promoted the culture of easy load and plundered both the people and the public money ruthlessly.

He hit out at the JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman for making propaganda against him (Imran Khan) that he had been backed by Jews and Qadyani.

“I am a true Muslim and believe that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is the last prophet,” he said, asking Maulana Fazl to stop telling lies to the people. He accused Maulana Fazl of making money through corrupt practices and diesel permits.

The Maulana supported Pervez Musharraf and President Asif Ali Zardari “during their regimes of corruption”.

Those who kill in the name of Islam are terrorists and criminals, who ”do not represent Islam at all”

Jihad means Dawah [proper presentation, understanding and appreciation of Islam in its real spirit]. People have misunderstood the concept of jihad. Islam does not permit extremism in all its manifestations, misconstrued for jihad by some unscrupulous elements.

Those who kill people for any reason are terrorists and criminals. They do not represent Islam at all but their own agenda and covetousness. Nobody has the right to snatch anyone’s life. Mankind belongs to Almighty Allah, who is supreme and the only authority [allowed] to snatch life. Qur’an describes Muslims as a “moderate community” and urges them to be merciful, kind and tolerant towards people of other communities as well.–Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Those who kill in the name of Islam are terrorists and criminals who ”do not represent Islam at all”, says renowned Indian scholar Maulana Wahiduddin Khan. [Sagar Fazal/Khabar]

Maulana: Islam does not permit extremism

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In Islam, no one is allowed to snatch a life, world-renowned Islamic scholar and peace activist Maulana Wahiduddin Khan tells Khabar South Asia in an exclusive interview.

By Altaf Ahmad for Khabar South Asia in New Delhi
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan of India is known worldwide for his teachings on modern Islam, non-violence, and interfaith harmony. He has authored more than 200 books, including, most recently, “The Prophet of Peace” and “Jihad, Peace and Inter-Community Relations in Islam”. An expert in religious affairs, Khan lectures on several popular television channels.

Born in Uttar Pradesh in 1925, he has received numerous national and international awards, including the Padma Bhushan, India’s third-highest civilian honour, the National Integration Award, the Communal Harmony Award, and the National Citizen’s Award, and many others.

Khabar: How do you see Islam and Muslims in the world today?

Khan: Islam advocates equality, peace and brotherhood, but in contemporary times, xenophobia has influenced the Muslim community. Islam urges Muslims to be the ambassadors of peace and brotherhood, but a section of Muslims on the other hand are involved in extremism and prejudice. Intolerance is highly denounced in Islam, and Muslims should exhibit tolerance and promote peace and brotherhood in all circumstances.

Khabar: Have Muslim clergy failed to play their role in spreading Islam in its real spirit? Prophet Muhammad said, “When leaders and clergy are on the right path, people will be on the same path”.

Khan: Muslim clergy tend to be ignorant to their duty and unfortunately have stayed away from the noble mission of Dawah (proper presentation, understanding and appreciation of Islam in its real spirit). In my opinion, they have failed to remove misconceptions about the religion, and contributed in bringing about a good deal of moral degradation among Muslims.

Islam stands for justice, peace and harmony. Extremism is not admissible in Islam. As far as the role of clergy is concerned, Prophet Muhammad says, “The Ulema (scholar) is one who knows the era and people he represents”. When clergy is unaware or unmindful of the affairs of the world, they are bound to lack vision and wisdom.

Khabar: There is a lot of confusion regarding jihad in Islam. What exactly does Holy Qur’an says about jihad?

Khan: Jihad means Dawah. People have misunderstood the concept of jihad. Islam does not permit extremism in all its manifestations, misconstrued for jihad by some unscrupulous elements.

Those who kill people for any reason are terrorists and criminals. They do not represent Islam at all but their own agenda and covetousness. Nobody has the right to snatch anyone’s life. Mankind belongs to Almighty Allah, who is supreme and the only authority [allowed] to snatch life. Qur’an describes Muslims as a “moderate community” and urges them to be merciful, kind and tolerant towards people of other communities as well.

Khabar: How do you view disorder and violence in different parts of the world? Who in your opinion is responsible for such inhuman acts?

Khan: Criminals and terrorists commit such inhuman acts. Such extremists have no religion. We need to denounce inhuman acts committed by these people for their own vested interests.

Khabar: In what situation and for which offences does Islam permit capital punishment?

Khan: Almighty God has created man with utmost respect and dignity. No one is allowed to snatch a life or commit murder of a human being. In Islam, capital punishment is permitted when somebody is murdered in cold blood.

Khabar: What is the legality of blasphemy in Islam? Is capital punishment the only way to deal with blasphemy?

Khan: There is no prescribed law for blasphemy in Islam. Muslims should exhibit tolerance and demonstrate wisdom. Violent protests against Danish cartoonist (Kurt Westergaard) and Salman Rushdie for their anti-Islamic views were a waste of energy. If someone writes against the Prophet Muhammad, we should have sound knowledge to dislodge his propaganda and prove him wrong. We should be well-equipped with logic and reasons to counter unscrupulous elements who want to create confusion with regard to Islam.

Those who embraced Islam in early ages were the opponents of Prophet Muhammad. Prophet Muhammad never expressed anger against them or awarded any kind of punishment. Exhibiting high moral and character, Prophet Muhammad converted his enemies into loyalists and trusted friends.

Khabar: What is the significance of the Hijab (veil) in Islam? Is head cover mandatory for girls in schools and colleges? Most Western colleges don’t permit veils.

Khan: Hijab is not what women and girls wear in present times. Schools, colleges and universities have their own set of rules. Girl students should follow and abide by them. Islam does not permit to create disorder in any institution in any circumstances. If you do not like some rules and regulations of an institution, that does not mean you will create problems for others by enforcing your own set of rules.

Islam urges you to be an honest and honourable citizen. One should be loyal to his or her country and likewise to the rules governing an educational institution. You can never be a good Muslim unless you are a good citizen of your country.

Khabar: What role do you see for madrassas in promotion of peace and quality education?

Khan: The madrassas have a limited role and they can’t go beyond that. You cannot expect madrassas to produce Nobel laureates, eminent scientists and reformists. Madrassas teach you about performing Namaz and Hajj (Prayers and Pilgrimage). Worldly knowledge is a must for producing eminent persons in the field of science, information technology and engineering, and Islam is not against it.

 

 

 

R2P=I2I (“Instigate to Intervene” Disguised As “Responsibility to Protect”)

[SEE: The Obscenity of Humanitarian Warfare ]

“Responsibility to Protect” (R2P) Or “Instigate to Intervene” (I2I)

By Atul BHARDWAJ (India)

“Responsibility to Protect” (R2P) Or “Instigate to Intervene” (I2I)

American democracy appears to be in jeopardy. Irrespective of the political dispensation at the White House, the policy of promoting proxy wars and covert military operations across the globe continues to mutate.

Any nation that decides to exercise its sovereign right to protect its citizens from armed insurgents incurs Washington’s wrath. America wants to permanently amend the rules of the game by stating that a nation’s right to protect is subordinate to the international community’s responsibility to Protect (R2P). Syria is the latest in the long list of nations that is suffering to sustain American imperialism.

R2P is the new name for humanitarian intervention, a norm adopted by the UNO in 2005. According to Gareth Evans, R2P equips everyone in the international community to prevent the “catastrophic human rights violations taking place behind sovereign state walls,” with “coercive military action as a last resort, not a first.”

The problem with analysts like Gareth is that their vision permits them to peep through the walls of sovereignty but not through the iron curtain of the empire that adheres to the doctrine of Instigate to Intervene (I2I). It is through use of such dubious norms and instigations that America attacked Libya and is now in the process of destabilizing Syria. Russia, China and Iran are the three countries preventing the Western military juggernaut to roll over Syria completely.

In an open defiance of well established international practices, Washington is blatantly using Turkey, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and UAE to lead an armed insurgency inside Syria. As a result the three-year-old dissent in Damascus is now an international problem. The Western media, with an agenda to flare up the situation in Syria began beaming in the misdemeanors of Bashar Al-Assad and his dynastic rule; projecting the opposition as victims of political atrocity.

Political struggle is a part and parcel of any state. The problem begins when political fissures are exploited by external actors. This is exactly what has happened in Syria where the government’s legitimate actions against the opposition-armed militancy are being dubbed as human rights violations.

The branding of Assad as a tyrant is a ruse to plunge the nation into a war of attrition. Since the beginning of January 2012, the C-130 transport aircraft loaded with weapons have been regularly taking off at the American military base in Qatar to land at Turkish airports. From the airports, the arms consignments travel by road to rebel-military camps on the Syria-Turkey border.

The NATO’s encouragement to Syrian rebels is not limited to moral and material support; the NATO countries are also in the forefront to mobilize manpower to augment the foot soldiers of the Free Syria Army (composed of Syrian military officers who have defected from their parent outfit, a bunch of mercenaries and Al-Qaeda terrorists). According to a study by King’s college London, “Hundreds of Europeans have travelled to Syria since the start of the civil war to fight against the country’s President, Bashar al-Assad…600 individuals from 14 countries including the UK, Austria, Spain, Sweden and Germany had taken part in the conflict since it began in 2011. European fighters made up to between 7% and 11% of the foreign contingent in Syria, which ranged between 2,000 and 5,500 people.”

America has anointed the main opposition party, Syrian National Coalition (SNC) to occupy the official Syrian seat at the Arab League. It is perhaps for this reason that Moaz al-Khatib the former leader of SNC, admitted, “We thank all the governments who supported us, but the role to be played by the United States is much bigger.” To democratize the instigation to intervene, and retain American control, the US has appointed Ghassan Hitto, an IT professional from Dallas, US, as the head of the planned interim government.

The imperial American obduracy flows from the ideological belief that the nation-states’ ‘monopoly over organized violence’ is not a right that can be exercised without the approval of the empire. Thereby meaning that the states are authorized to use violence within their own territory, only to protect those people certified as victims by the empire. Any violence against the American certified victims is branded as human rights violations and genocide.

The Western fetish for R2P and their so-called ‘good intentions’ have already caused mayhem in the lives of ordinary Iraqi or Libyan. The Russian President Putin says,

“The state is falling apart, Inter-ethnic, inter-clan and inter-tribal conflicts continue.”

However, the Americans will not abandon R2P because it is a tool to re-order the states in accordance with what Stephen Gill has identified as “new constitutionalism – imposition of new constitutional and quasi-constitutional political and legal frameworks – with respect to the state and the operation of strategic, macroeconomic, microeconomic and social policy.”

Atul Bhardwaj is a researcher at School of Liberal Studies, Ambedkar University, Delhi. He can be contacted at atul.beret@gmail.com.

“Burkas for baby girls”–An Insult To Islam and To All Saudi Arabian Men

[This fuckin’ moron, who passes for a preacher/cleric in Saudi Arabia, reveals a largely unknown, yet apparent fact (as seen through Wahhabi/fundamentalist eyes), that the lust of your average Saudi man is equivalent to that of a common American pedophile/rapist, who would logically get ten-years to life if convicted for raping and murdering their own children here (Wahhabi Preacher Sodomizes and Murders 5-Year Old Daughter, Receives Token Jail Sentence).  Do Saudi men really understand just what these piss-ant little “experts” in Saudi “Sharia” are saying about them, or the disservice they are committing against the Prophet’s Name (PBUH)?  It is easy to see, by comparison, that the Iranians and Syrians are upright, moral human beings, when compared to your average monstrous aberration, caricature-human beings who are just lurking in the deep shadows of Saudi Arabia, waiting to molest little girls.  

Saudi terrorism extends from the many royal palaces and their head-chopping cadres, all the way down to your average Wahhabi preacher.  

Ahmadinejad was wrong, it is Saudi Arabia which MUST be erased from the memory of mankind. The “custodian of the Two Holy Mosques” is a usurper, on an equal footing with the Zionist usurpers of the land of Palestine.

“Our dear Imam said that the occupying regime must be wiped off the map and this was a very wise statement. We cannot compromise over the [Mecca and Medina]. Is it possible to create a new front in the heart of an old front. This would be a defeat and whoever accepts the legitimacy of this regime has in fact, signed the defeat of the Islamic world. Our dear Imam targeted the heart of the world oppressor in his struggle, meaning the occupying regime. I have no doubt that the new wave that has started in [Qatif], and we witness it in the Islamic world too, will eliminate this disgraceful stain from the Islamic world.”   

It is high time for Iran to host a “World Without Wahhabism” conference, since the Saudis serve Zionist interests throughout the Middle East, just as much as the French, British and Americans.  The Saudis have usurped the Islamic faith, which outlined The True Path to Paradise that applies to every man, and replaced it with their own so-called “Shariah,” which is no more than an outline for committing “Islamist” terrorism.  We fight the Global War On Terror for one reason, Saudi meddling in the world.]

‘Burkas for baby girls’: Saudi preacher slammed for sullying Islam

Russia-Today

To protect baby girls from being sexually exploited, the Saudi cleric, Sheikh Abdullah Daoud, has called parents to make their female children wear the Islamic headscarf. (YouTube picture)

To protect baby girls from being sexually exploited, the Saudi cleric, Sheikh Abdullah Daoud, has called parents to make their female children wear the Islamic headscarf. (YouTube picture)

A Saudi cleric who called for baby girls to wear burkas for their own safety has been subjected to a barrage of criticism on social media. The preacher’s remarks have been widely condemned for denigrating Islam, and as a breach of privacy.

Sheikh Abdullah Daoud made the remarks during an interview with Islamic Al-Majd TV last year, but video of the interview recently went viral on social media sites and became a topic of widespread debate and derision.

Daoud claimed that baby girls would be protected from abuse if they wore a full burka, and justified his statement by citing unfounded medical reports of the sexual molestation of babies in Saudi Arabia.

According to Islamic law, girls are not required to wear burkas until they reach puberty.

Many Twitter users have called for the cleric to be held accountable for his statement:Burkas for babies is disturbing! Now the baby victims are blamed for men’s crimes. Allah help us stop the ignorance,” one user wrote.

“Why stop with baby girls. Let’s cover everything in a burka to protect the world from sexual abuse by men,” Twitter user Celeste Klose joked.

Sheikh Mohammad Al-Jzlana, a former judge for the Saudi Board of Grievances, spoke with Al Arabiya and condemned Daoud’s statement as a mockery of Islam, and harmful to the religion’s image.

He also appealed to Saudis not to pay attention to unofficial fatwas (religious edicts), and emphasized that such rulings can only be issued by Saudi authorities.

Brotherhood Protesters Take-Up Arms, Becoming the Saudi Enforcers In Egypt

[Egypt’s Brotherhood fanatics are finally showing their true faces.  This breed of Saudi-created Wahhabi enforcers, who like to call themselves “Islamists,” are terrorists by nature.  Their beliefs and ideology are terroristic, leading followers of the nonsense they preach into committing acts of violence, usually upon fellow Muslims.  God, by whatever Name you choose to call Him, has NOT charged any human beings with killing other “infidel” (unbeliever) humans, no matter what some crazy, self-educated “Mullah” tells you.  Islam is a religion of  True Believers and for every believer there is a deceiver, one who tries to lead into misbelief, just like in every other human religion.  Sorting the “wheat from the chaff” is the responsibility of every Believer.   Who among us is worthy to judge another Believer’s error, when we cannot recognize our own errors?  Islam is a religion of Peace.  This is the standard by which Teachers of The Book are to be measured.]

Egypt erupts as Muslim Brotherhood supporters clash with protesters

A wounded protester outside the presidential palace in Cairo after a clash between supporters and opponents of President Morsi. Photograph: Mostafa Elshemy/AP

Head of Egypt’s ambulances confirms three dead in Brotherhood violence

CAIRO: The head of Egypt’s ambulances told ONTV that at least three people they have received have been killed in the ongoing violence as the Muslim Brotherhood launched an attack on anti-President Mohamed Morsi protesters on Wednesday.

The chief said that the three deaths were the result of gunshot wounds.

They were named as Mahmoud Mohamed Ibrahim, Mohamed Khalaf and Mohamed Ahmed.

Those are not the three earlier named by the Revolutionary Socialists Party and other activists.

The two socialist activists murdered were named as Karam Gerges and Mohamed Essam.

Activists shared photos of the two dead men with blood covering their faces and bodies. Al-Tayar Al-Shaabi, the popular current revolutionary movement confirmed the protesters death.

Another protester, Hany Mohamed, was also reported to have been killed, although Bikyamasr.com could not confirm that specific information.

The armed Brotherhood supporters were reported to have used knives, broken glass, Molotov cocktails, rubber bullets and live ammunition to disperse the opposition sit-in that followed a massive protest outside the presidential palace late on Tuesday, calling for Morsi to step down.

The ambulances chief said over 350 people have been injured as Muslim Brotherhood supporters continue to attack Egyptian activists who had been protesting against President Mohamed Morsi.

BM

“Any Female Playing A Role In War Against Mujahideen Should Be Killed.–Official TTP Statement

[The people of Pakistan, ALL OF THEM, are confronted with a choice which they must make–Will Pakistan be ruled by the animals who take pride in the murder of children, throwing acid in little girls’ faces and the burning of their schools, or will they join hands with the rest of the human race?  Altaf Hussain said “the attack on Malala as an attack on all humanity.”  He is absolutely correct.  If Pakistanis do not join hands in a national crusade for their children, then they will be handing them over to the animals who think themselves to be modern-day Prophets of God.  Any Muslim man, who has been faithful to the real word of the Quran and not just selected quotes taken out of context, could easily refute all of the pious-sounding words of the ignorant Taliban as they murder and maim the innocent in favor of serving a false “shariah.”  They could do that, if they weren’t afraid to defend themselves, their families and the word of God itself against the criminal gangs who roam the countryside, calling themselves “mujahedeen.”]

Altaf urges all workers to collect details on muftis, ulemas

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KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain on Friday urged all office bearers, party workers and peace loving citizens of Karachi and the country to submit within a week the details of all muftis and ulemas (clerics) in their localities, regardless of their sectarian affiliations, with the party’s unit and sector offices situated in their respective areas, DawnNews reported.

The MQM chief said that the particulars of all religious leaders holding different positions and titles such as mufti, imam, aalim and khatib would then be collected from the units and sectors at the zonal level from where they would be immediately consolidated at the MQM headquarter Nine Zero in Karachi.

He further instructed all sector and unit office bearers to note down the names and addresses of all those who refuse to share their particulars so that the list of their names could be sent to the government which could then itself obtain the details. The MQM chief said the measure would benefit the country and its innocent citizens.

Earlier on Thursday, Altaf Hussain had given a 24-hour-long ultimatum to all top muftis and ulema (clerics) of the country to openly denounce the cowardly attack on Pakistani child activist Malala Yousufzai and vowed to expose all those who failed to condemn the attack by banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

Altaf gives muftis, ulema 24 hrs to condemn attack on Malala

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MQM Chief Altaf Hussain. — File Photo

KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain on Thursday gave 24 hours ultimatum to all top muftis and ulema (clerics) of the country to openly denounce the cowardly attack on young Pakistani children’s rights activist Malala Yousafzai or else he will ‘expose’ them, DawnNews reported.

In a statement, issued by the party, Hussain vowed to expose all clerics, who will fail to condemn the attack by banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), in his scheduled speech at the party’s workers convention on Sunday.

The MQM chief had declared the attack on Malala as an attack on all humanity and said that perpetrators of the vile act should be swiftly brought to justice.

Malala along with two other schoolmates sustained bullet injuries when armed assailants opened fire on their school van in Mingora city, Swat on Tuesday.

The TTP had taken responsibility for attacking the national peace award winner on the same day.

The Taliban, who have killed thousands of people across Pakistan in the last five years and destroyed hundreds of girls’ schools, have issued a statement saying that any female who opposes them should be killed.

 

It Is Not Man’s Task, To Punish Blasphemers and Unbelievers

We have caused more damage to the true image of Islam than the recent stupid video  

 
Blashemy (Abusing  Prophet)
 
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan
 
The Qur’an is the most authentic source of Islam. The Qur’an clearly states which actions are crimes and specifies what kind of punishments are to be meted out for them.
We learn from  verse 24:4  of the Qur’an that if a pious woman is defamed without any proof, such a person, in the eyes of the Qur’an, becomes a criminal who deserves physical punishment by a court of law. When the Qur’an mentions this crime, it also mentions the specific punishment along with it.
Now let us look into this matter from another aspect. The Qur’an states that since ancient times God has sent prophets in succession to every town and every community. It says, moreover, that the contemporaries of all of these prophets adopted the same negative attitude — but with far greater intensity — as has been mentioned in the Qur’an with regard to chaste women. For instance, the Qur’an says: “Alas for human beings! They ridicule every messenger that comes to them.” (36:30) 
There are more than two hundred verses of this nature, which reveal that the contemporaries of the Prophet repeatedly perpetrated the same act which is now called ‘abuse of the Prophet’ or ‘using abusive language about the Prophet’.Prophets down the ages have been mocked and abused by their contemporaries (36:30), some of the epithets cited in the Qur’an being “a liar” (40:24), “possessed” (15:6), “a fabricator” (16:101), “a foolish man” (7:66). The Qur’an mentions these words of abuse used by prophets’ contemporaries but nowhere does the Qur’an prescribe the punishment of lashes, or death or any such deterrent punishment.
This clearly shows that ‘abuse of the Prophet’ is not a subject of punishment, but is rather a subject of dawah. That is, one who is guilty of abusing the Prophet should not have corporal punishment meted out to him: he should rather be given sound arguments in order that his mind may be addressed. In other words, peaceful persuasion should be used to reform the person concerned rather than attempting to kill him.
There is a verse in the Qur’an to this effect: “God knows all that is in their hearts; so ignore what they say, admonish them and speak to them in such terms as will address their minds.”(4:63) 
This verse means that those who adopt a negative stance towards the Prophet will be judged by God, who knows the innermost recesses of their hearts. The responsibility of the Prophet and his followers is to observe the policy of avoidance, and, wishing well, convey the message of God to them in such a manner that their minds might be properly addressed. 
This case is made out in the Chapter entitled Al-Ghashiya: “Do they never reflect on the camels and how they were created, and on the sky, how it is raised aloft, and on the mountains, how they are firmly set up, and on the earth, how it is spread out? So, exhort them; your task is only to exhort, you are not their keeper. But whoever turns back and denies the truth, will be punished by God with the greatest punishment. Certainly, it is to Us that they will return.” (88:17-26) 
These verses of the Qur’an tell us about what approach the Prophet was required to adopt. This approach was that people should be addressed by arguments. Attempts should be made to satisfy them rationally as to the veracity of the religion. And notwithstanding any negative reaction on the part of those addressed, this same positive style of dawah(conveying the message of God to people) has to be adhered to. It is not the task of the dayee to assume the role of a keeper. So far as punishment and reward are concerned, that is a subject wholly in the domain of God. God will gather together everyone on the Day of Resurrection and then, according to their deeds, will reward or punish them. 
Another important aspect of this matter is that at no point in the Qur’an is it stated that anyone who uses abusive language about the Prophet should be stopped from doing so, and in case he continues to do so he should be awarded severe punishment. On the contrary, the Qur’an commands the believer not to use abusive language directed against opponents: “But do not revile those [beings] whom they invoke instead of God, lest they, in their hostility, revile God and out of ignorance.” (6:108) 
This verse of the Qur’an makes it plain that it is not the task of the believers to establish media watch offices and hunt for anyone involved in acts of defamation of the Prophet, and then plan for their killing, whatever the cost. On the contrary, the Qur’an enjoins believers to sedulously refrain from indulging in such acts as may provoke people to retaliate by abusing Islam and the Prophet. This injunction of the Qur’an makes it clear that this responsibility devolves upon the believers, rather than that others be held responsible and demands made for them to be punished. 
Looked at from this angle, the stance of present-day Muslims goes totally against the teachings of the Qur’an. Whenever anyone — in their judgement — commits an act of ‘abuse of the Prophet’, in speech or in writing, they instantly get provoked and their response is to start leading processions through  the streets, which often turn violent, and then they demand that all those who insult the Prophet be beheaded. 
All those who initiate such provocative processions and demand the killing of supposed ‘abusers of the Prophet’, are instead themselves the greatest culprits when it comes to abuse of the Prophet. Their violent conduct has resulted in the public being lead into believing that Islam is a religion of a pre-civilized era, that it imposes a ban on free thinking, that it is a religion which believes in thought crime, and that it is a religion of violence, etc. 
It is Muslims themselves who are entirely responsible for the formation of this negative image of Islam.Distorting the image of Islam in this way is, indeed, the greatest of all crimes. 
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan (born January 1, 1925) is one of India’s leading Islamic scholars and peace activist.. Based in New Delhi, he has authored over 100 books, and edits the monthly journal Al-Risala. He also heads the Centre for Peace and Spirituality. He has received, among others, the Demiurgus Peace International Award, under the patronage of the former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev; the Padma Bhushan, India’s third highest civilian honor; the National Citizen’s Award, presented by Mother Teresa and the Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Award (2009). He has translated the holy Qur’an in simple and contemporary English and wrote a commentary on the Qur’an and currently gives lectures on several Indian and Pakistani Television channels.

Prophet Mohammad’s letter to the Christians

Prophet Mohammad’s letter to the Christians


LETTER TO THE MONKS OF ST. CATHERINE MONASTERY

In 628 C.E. Prophet Muhammad (s) granted a Charter of Privileges to the monks of St. Catherine Monastery in Mt. Sinai. It consisted of several clauses covering all aspects of human rights including such topics as the protection of Christians, freedom of worship and movement, freedom to appoint their own judges and to own and maintain their property, exemption from military service, and the right to protection in war.

An English translation of that document is presented below.

This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them.
Verily I, the servants, the helpers, and my followers defend them, because Christians are my citizens; and by Allah! I hold out against anything that displeases them.
No compulsion is to be on them.
Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries.
No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims’ houses.
Should anyone take any of these, he would spoil God’s covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter against all that they hate.
No one is to force them to travel or to oblige them to fight.
The Muslims are to fight for them.
If a female Christian is married to a Muslim, it is not to take place without her approval. She is not to be prevented from visiting her church to pray.
Their churches are to be respected. They are neither to be prevented from repairing them nor the sacredness of their covenants.
No one of the nation (Muslims) is to disobey the covenant till the Last Day (end of the world).

Pakistan and India Joint Military Exercises?–(It Will Never Happen.)

[Pakistani and Indian forces to train Afghans?…pure insanity…joint military exercises?…Who will be the referee?  This agreement reduces a 60 year military confrontation to the level of a cricket match.   The bullshit continues to flow from the new American paradigm.] 

Addressing concerns: Pakistan Army to train Afghan troops

Pakistan’s army will train the Afghan National Army under an agreement signed at a recent trilateral summit in the Turkish city of Istanbul. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

The administration of Afghan President Hamid Karzai has said that Pakistan’s army will train the Afghan National Army under an agreement signed at a recent trilateral summit in the Turkish city of Istanbul, according to the BBC.

President Karzai met with his Turkish and Pakistani counterparts Abdullah Gul and Asif Ali Zardari ahead of a regional conference in Istanbul early this month.

Kabul-based BBC correspondent quoted Afghan foreign ministry spokesperson Janan Musazai as confirming that under the agreement the three countries will also hold joint military exercises. He, however, did not provide details of the agreement.

Pakistan, according to sources, has offered many times in the past its help in training the Afghan National Army but the proposal had not received a positive response earlier.

Foreign Office spokesperson Tehmina Janjua has also hinted at supporting Musazai’s revelation. The Associated Press of Pakistan quoted her as saying that two memorandums of understandings (MoUs) were signed at the trilateral conference.

One of the MoUs, she said, was about joint military exercises while the other was about training the Afghan police.  Pakistan, she explained, wants to see peace, stability and prosperity in Afghanistan and is ready to support all efforts in this regard.

Last month, Afghanistan signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement with India during President Karzai’s trip to New Delhi. And according to sources, India agreed, under this agreement, to train, equip and build capacity for Afghan security forces, including the army, besides a host of other things.

Pakistan has strong reservations about this agreement, though officially it said that the Indo-Afghan accord would have no bearings on Kabul-Islamabad relationship. President Karzai had also sought to address Pakistan’s concerns saying that “India is a great friend. Pakistan is a twin brother.”

Published in The Express Tribune

Israel is tearing apart the Jewish people

[In keeping with my policy of promoting peace through understanding, I offer the following article on the Jewish mind, with my accompanying clarifications, as a necessary step toward global understanding of the Palestinian issue.  The radical thinking of the Israeli government is causing an estrangement with the remainder of world Jewry, wherever they are to be found (mostly in the US, even though the numbers returning to Russia are increasing by the minute).  This separation in thinking between Israeli Jews and American Jews represents disillusionment with the Zionist ideals.  This is the only real “existential threat” to Israel’s existence. 

This estrangement is a difference of opinions, between the basic liberal beliefs of the majority of non-Israeli Jews and the fascist militarist ideas being promoted in the name of Jewish “exceptionalism,” which teaches that Jews are higher lifeforms (the only true humans) to the non-Jewish “goyim” (who are cattle). 

The Jewish writer of the following article builds on this idea of a growing separation, which will lead to either a violent dissolution of the “Jewish state,” or the downsizing of Israel with the permanent foundation of the Palestinian state.  If the end result of this downsizing is the formation of an Israeli government dedicated to “Universalist values,” then that should prove acceptable to all fair-minded observers:

Universalism in its primary meaning refers to religious, theological, and philosophical concepts with universal (“applying to all”) application or applicability….Judaism holds that God had entered into a covenant with all mankind as Noachides, and that Jews and non-Jews alike have a relationship with God.“[8]   

Noachides, abide by the following Seven Laws of Noah:

  1. Prohibition of Idolatry: You shall not have any idols before God.
  2. Prohibition of Murder: You shall not murder. (Genesis 9:6)
  3. Prohibition of Theft: You shall not steal.
  4. Prohibition of Sexual immorality: You shall not commit any of a series of sexual prohibitions, which include adulteryincest, anal intercourse between men and bestiality.
  5. Prohibition of Blasphemy: You shall not blaspheme God’s name.
  6. Dietary Law: Do not eat flesh taken from an animal while it is still alive. (Genesis 9:4, as interpreted in the Talmud (Sanhedrin 59a))
  7. Requirement to have just Laws: Set up a governing body of law (e.g. Courts)

As a religious person, I can find nothing on the surface in those Seven Laws that I can object to (not considering what might be hidden); I don’t know about the rest of you.  If the state of Israel was dedicated to the universal protection of the rights of every human being and it coexisted alongside the state of Palestine, then True Peace in the Middle East could be possible.  Such a reformed state could provide a shining example to the world, if it chose to do so.  The Christian in me says, Why wouldn’t we give them a second chance, along with the Palestinian people?  In such a theoretical, nearly ideal set-up, there would be no room for racist beliefs that condemn entire peoples for the evil works of a sinister minority.

Let us hope and pray that Zionist radicalism divides the Jewish people, so that reason and sanity can prevail.]

Israel is tearing apart the Jewish people

Israel has never had a government that so blatantly violates the core values of liberal democracy, which dismisses identities of 85% of the world’s Jewry.

By Carlo Strenger

In June last year, Peter Beinart published an article in the New York Review of Books that created quite a storm by pointing out the deep estrangement between the young generation of American Jews and Israel. A year later, it is time to take stock.

Unfortunately, the situation has only grown a lot worse. In my travels to Europe I speak to predominantly Jewish audiences, but also to non-Jews who care deeply about Israel. They voice their pain and anguish openly: They want to understand what has happened to Israel. They desperately want to stand by it, but they are, increasingly, at a loss of knowing how to do so.

Evacuating settlers in 2005. Evacuating settlers in 2005.
Photo by: Nir Kafri

Their questions are simple. They know that Israel is located in one of the world’s most difficult neighborhoods; they have no illusions about the Iranian regime or Hezbollah; and they know the Hamas charter. But they don’t understand how any of this is connected with Israel’s settlement policies, the dispossession of Palestinian property in Jerusalem, and the utterly racist talk about the ‘Judaization’ of Jerusalem. They feel that they no longer have arguments, even words, to defend Israel.

Israel has never had a government that so blatantly violates the core values of liberal democracy. Never has a Knesset passed laws that are as manifestly racist as the current one. Israel has had foreign ministers who were unworldly and didn’t know English; but it has never had a foreign minister whose only goal is to pander to his right-wing constituency by flaunting his disdain for international law and the idea of human rights with such relish.

Moreover, there has never been a government so totally oblivious of its relation to world Jewry. It passes laws that increase the Orthodox establishment’s stranglehold on religious affairs and personal life – completely disregarding that 85 percent of world Jewry are not Orthodox – and simply dismissing their Jewish identities and their institutions. As a result, this majority of world Jewry feels Israel couldn’t care less about its values and identity.

Israel’s Orthodox establishment claims that by monopolizing conversion to Judaism and the laws of marriage, they are preventing a rift in the Jewish people. The exact opposite is true: It is Israel’s turn toward racism that extends not only toward its Arab citizens, but toward Ethiopian youth not accepted into schools in Petah Tikva, toward Sephardic girls not allowed to study in Haredi schools in Immanuel, that most Jews in the world cannot stand for. It is the unholy coalition between nationalism and Orthodoxy that is tearing the Jewish people apart.

The overwhelming majority of American and European Jews are deeply committed to Universalist values, and have been so for most of their existence. This commitment is not a fad or an attempt to be fashionable and politically correct. It is the deeply felt conclusion the majority of world Jewry draws from Jewish history: After all that has happened to us, we Jews must never, ever allow violation of universal human rights.

This is why Jews in the U.S. have been central in the Civil Rights movement; this is why Jews in Europe will never forget that only Universalist liberals stood by Alfred Dreyfus in 1890s France. For most Jews of the world, it is simply unfathomable: How can we, who have suffered from racial and religious discrimination, use language and hold views that – as Israel Prize laureate and historian of fascism Zeev Sternhell argued – were last held in the Western world by the Franco regime?

For most of world Jewry, the idea of Yiddishkeit in the second half of the 20th century meant that Jews must never compromise on the equality of human beings before the law and the inviolability of their rights. So how can they stand by a state that continues to pay rabbis who argue that Jewish life has a sanctity that doesn’t extend to gentiles, and that it is forbidden to rent property to Arabs?

In moments of despair, I try to remember that Israel’s move to the right is driven by fear and confusion, ruthlessly fanned by politicians whose hold on power depends on the panic of Israel’s citizens. I feel it can’t be true that the country that was supposed not only to be the homeland of the Jews, but a moral beacon, is descending into such darkness. I try to remember that such times of darkness do not reflect on the human quality of a whole nation; that countries like Spain, Greece and Portugal emerged from dark times into the free world; that even though the winds of right-wing nationalism are sweeping over Israel, it is still a democracy.

Sometimes, along with the majority of Jews committed to liberal and Universalist values, I feel as if I were simply in a bad dream; that when I wake up, Herzl’s vision of a Jewish state committed to the core values of liberalism will be the reality.

Spontaneous Creation?

Spontaneous Creation?

Gunther Ostermann for Salem-News.com

“The universe can create itself spontaneously out of nothing and it has no creator” – Stephen Hawking

Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking photo courtesy: wokay.com

(KELOWNA, B.C.) – There was and is, A CAUSE, prior to the big bang.

The prominent scientist Stephen Hawking warned humanity that, “We’re acting with reckless indifference to the future on planet earth. It will be difficult to avoid disaster in the next hundred years, let alone the next thousand or million.”

Why is humanity hell-bent on destroying the world? Has humanity lost its moral compass, if it ever had a real one? Numerous people, disappointed in church and religion, are embracing atheism, but in so doing throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

Maybe the time has come to replace the archaic and man-made concept of God, with a new science based understanding. However, despite the fact that ten thousand scientists are working on the Large Hadron Collider, in trying to recreate the Big-Bang and looking for the God particle, the Higgs boson, by smashing subatomic particles together, not one scientist came out and admit, perhaps for fear of ridicule that, before the big bang, and as THE CAUSE, there was and is a Super-Intelligence, who is as invisible and intangible as is our mind, that is me, the I?

It may take many years before that happens, since even Stephen Hawking says, “The universe can create itself spontaneously out of nothing and it has no creator.” Wow! Is then the belief in God any less fantastic? Is it too much of a conjecture to presume that the big bang was designed, just like any seed, with the Anthropic principle, and the process of Creavolution, to produce in time, exactly what exists today?

Lastly, I add my own prophetic words from the 80s to Stephen Hawking’s…every year lost in curbing the violence of man against man and nature will require eons for the earth to heal itself, and nobody really knows the day of no return.

Oroginally published by: The Guardian Nigeria

Immoral, Murderous Drone Strike Motivates Tribal Non-Combatants to Join the Anti-US Jihad

[First we see the American drone murder of five Waziri tribal leaders near Wana, now we learn of the attack upon a tribal jirga in Miramshah.  In both cases, non-combatant tribal leaders were meeting, exercising tribal democracy, when Hellfire missiles blew the assemblies apart.  It is part of the pattern that has long been established in this war–Americans attack peaceful tribals because they are peaceful.  No deals with the Pak Army are acceptable to the NATO powers.  If the Army gains the cooperation of any major tribe in the region, American missiles soon follow.  When Pakistan surrendered Davis, it surrendered its sole opportunity to challenge the American-dictated status quo–that the Americans could tell the Pak Army and the Pak govt what to do and then back-up their words with air power or their network of subversives throughout Pakistan (some, or all of them called “Taliban”).  The US wants every able-bodied male in Pakistan’s tribal region (perhaps in the entire country) to take-up arms and fight back.  If this were to happen, it would justify any imaginable military action in “self-defense” against them.

The Army has long known all of this; it is just now becoming apparent to the rest of us.  If the Army does not let the US run all over them, then the US imperialists will simply use more force.  No matter what your leaders say to reassure you, Pakistan, the US Special Forces, with all of the air cover in the world, is coming to your neighborhood very soon.  Your greatest dilemma is, do we take up arms against this advance before, or after it becomes a “fait accompli”?  Taking-up arms in holy war now, will exhaust whatever remains of hope for finding common cause in pursuit of some kind of peace.

My point is this:  If you give-in to the impulse to react violently to American violence, then you only quicken the day when American forces will be free to use ALL of their violence.  The Pak Army had an ace-in-the-hole with Davis, which it threw away for a few more empty Saudi and American promises.  It might not be too late, yet, to democratically turn the tide in Pakistan’s favor, but that will require hands that are holding signs, instead of guns.  There must be some honest leader left in Pakistan, who has not yet sold his sole to the devil.  Someone must stand-up for whatever remains of Jinnah’s Pakistan.

All of you must stand-up together and demand of whatever passes for a govt, that it do the right thing, for once.  Doing the right thing requires leadership, standing out in the front, forming the words that must be spoken, if Pakistan is to remain as a country.]

North Waziristan drone strike: Tribesmen vow ‘jihad’ against US

Bureau Report | From the Newspaper

 

Pakistani tribal elder Malik Jalal, centre, flanked by newsmen addresses a news conference to condemn the recent US drone attack in North Waziristan which killed over 40 people, March 18, 2011 in Peshawar. — Photo by AP

PESHAWAR, March 18: Reacting to the deadly drone attack on a traditional jirga in North Waziristan Agency that killed 40 civilians, the tribal elders on Friday announced waging jihad (holy war) against the US and its allies.

Speaking during a hurriedly called press conference at the Peshawar Press Club, head of the North Waziristan Peace Committee Malik Jalal Sarhadi Wazir describedThursday’s drone attack as a barbaric and inhuman act against innocent people. He urged the tribesmen to stand up against the atrocities of US and its stooges, who had been indulging in the worst form of human rights violation.

“We have allowed our youth to carry out suicide attacks on Americans and we will show to the world how to take revenge for the atrocities on our tribesmen,” the tribal elder said and added that they were now compelled to wage jihad against the US and its agents sitting in the country.

Rejecting reports about the presence of al Qaeda and Taliban in Fata, Mr Wazir said that there was no safe haven for militants in the tribal areas of Pakistan. He said that the American administration itself had endorsed the presence of about 70 per cent al Qaeda top leadership in Afghanistan.

He said that several missiles were fired from drones on a peace jirga in Datta Khel, North Waziristan, on Thursday, killing 40 innocent civilians and injuring 50 others.

“We will take revenge from the US and its allies as our people are mourning everywhere in the entire Waziristan due to the attack,” the tribal elder said. He also criticised the coalition government and termed it equally responsible for the bloodshed in parts of the country.

Flanked by several tribesmen, including Malik Faridullah and Malik Niaz Daraz, Mr Wazir said that the tribesmen would not sit silent over the barbarism of the allied forces and that they would start a jihad for taking revenge from the Americans and the ‘corrupt rulers of Pakistan’. “We are patriotic Pakistanis, but we are being forced to take up arms under a well-planned conspiracy,” he said and claimed that Haqqani and Gul Bahadur groups had no presence in the tribal area. He regretted that the government did not bother to show any reaction to the continued US drone attacks and the killing of innocent tribesmen, including women and children.

The tribal elder urged the media to avoid negative propaganda against tribal people in an attempt to appease the US and its allies. Blackwater operatives are behind sabotage acts in the country, he said and claimed that the rulers were protecting them. “We want justice and we will not accept dollars as blood money for our dead,” he said. Mr Wazir stressed the need for expelling US operatives from the country and said the tribal people would no more remain silent on drone attacks.

One Religion–Many Faces

Brahmanism: This is the sum of duty: Do naught unto others which would cause you pain if done to you.: Mahabharata 5:1517

Christianity: All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them.: Matthew 7:12

Islam: No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother what which he desires for himself. Sunnah

Buddhism: Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful.: Udana Varga 5:18

Judaism: What is hateful to you, do not to your fellowmen. That is the entire Law; all the rest is commentary.: Talmud, Shabbat 31:a

Confucianism: Surely it is the maxim of loving-kindness: Do not unto others that you would not have them do unto you.: Analects 15:23

Taoism: Regard your neighbor’s gain as your own gain, and your neighbor’s loss as your own loss.: T’ai Shag Kan Ying P’ien

Zoroastrianism: That nature alone is good which refrains from doing unto another whatsoever is not good: for itself. : Dadistan-i-dinik 94:5

“A human being is a part of the whole, called by us, “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. Nobody is able to achieve this completely, but the striving for such achievement is in itself a part of the liberation and a foundation for inner security.” : Albert Einstein – (1879-1955) Physicist and Professor, Nobel Prize 1921

–E.

A Thousand Year Writer’s Block…

“Ideologically, this concedes the public space to the Islamists and it is only their intellectual and practical bankruptcy that prevents them  from taking full advantage of this tremendous ideological monopoly.”

“What prevents such a discourse from developing?  The answer lies hidden in two concepts that the Islamicate world has not been able to shed: the twin notions of blasphemy and apostasy and a subsidiary idea that these laws can be enforced by free-lance enforcers where the state fails to take action.”

[These sentences put their finger on the central failure of modern fundamentalist Islam (which “coincidentally” happens to be the central failure of modern fundamentalist Christianity as well)–the act by the Higher Power to introduce complex new religious concepts into the minds of men, followed by silence for hundreds of years or more, without offering further clarification of meaning.  Was God’s silence merely a pause in the conversation (to allow others to speak) or all He had to say?

Blasphemy and apostasy are warnings for us to watch our mouths and to honor the traditions defined by man’s laws, but beyond that, they are not enforcement mechanisms, passing judgments to be carried-out by the most zealous young male believers.  God’s historic silence on the matter is the device intended to teach us that there are no enforcement mechanisms, only faith–faith that physically enforcing the behavior of others is the real blasphemy.  Giving ground to those who would force their faith on others is the highest form of apostasy, the total abandonment of faith to the barbarians.  Faith is to be defended, but not by the sword.  The only defense against false teachings and false teachers is correct ideas.

The Sacred Teachings apply to all living beings, even to those who don’t understand.  We increase the number of true believers by helping those who seek to understand and offering correction to those who merely think that they understand.

It is not that true that God’s voice has gone silent; He has merely lowered the volume since He now speaks with the softer voice of our inner ears.  Quiet the world around you and listen just a little closer.]

A Thousand Year Writer’s Block…

– by Omar Ali

William Burroughs famously remarked that Islam had hit a one thousand year writer’s block. Is this assessment justified?  First things first: obviously we are not talking about all writing or all creative work. Thousands of talented writers have churned out countless works of literature, from the poems of Hafiz and Ghalib to the novels of Naguib Mahfooz and the fairy tales of innumerable anonymous (and amazing) talents . There is also no shortage of talent in other creative fields, e.g. I can just say  “Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan” and be done with this discussion.  But what about the sciences of religion and political thought, or the views of biology, history and human society to which these are connected? Is there a writer’s block in these dimensions?

The correct answer would be “it depends”  or “compared to what”? After all, it’s not so much that everyone else in Eurasia stopped thinking 500 years ago, but rather than an explosion of knowledge occurred in Europe that rapidly outstripped other centers of civilization in Eurasia. And after a period of relative decline, the rest of the world is catching up. Culture matters, but cultures also evolve. For better and for worse, cultures in Japan and Taiwan are now full participants in the global knowledge exchange, both as consumers and as producers. Iran has been trying to move beyond previous (and obviously flawed) models of personal autocracy and hereditary rule interspersed with violent and devastating civil wars, for over a hundred years,  and the Islamic republic, for all its problems, is not a brain-dead culture.

But what of the Sunni world?  There is no one uniform pattern., but states like Turkey and Indonesia that are doing “better”  (apologies for making a judgment, but how else to judge?) are running imported systems that maybe fairly functional, but that the ruling elite cannot seem to defend on “Islamic” grounds. This means that they are forever exposed to ideological assault from the Islamists. Much of the population appears to prefer the “imported”  arrangement to any “authentic” Islamist alternative, but neither the elite nor the wider population seems to have arguments that can systematically justify the acceptance and import of new ideas, particularly ideas labeled “un-Islamic”.  And what prevents such a discourse from developing? The answer lies hidden in two concepts that the Islamicate world has not been able to shed: the twin notions of blasphemy and apostasy and a subsidiary idea that these laws can be enforced by free-lance enforcers where the state fails to take action. This leads to a limited and hypocritical public discourse in which everyone (in public) pays lip-service to a mythology of Islamic perfection, completeness and ahistorical permanence, while struggling to carry on with life above and beyond those formulaic pieties.  Ideologically, this concedes the public space to the Islamists and it is only their intellectual and practical bankruptcy that prevents them  from taking full advantage of this tremendous ideological monopoly.

So the problem (and there is a problem) is not a thousand year writer’s block. And it’s certainly not a problem intrinsic to Islam as such (because there is no such things as “Islam as such”).  We do not have to buy into the notion that Sunni Islam is barbaric in essence . Salafist and Wahabist interpretations (which are, let us assume, ipso-facto barbaric) are not a return to some original essence, they are a new invention and not a particularly good one.  There is no essence and no pure past to which everything tends. Islam is a product of history, with roots in the past that go far past 7thcentury Arabia. The religion evolved and borrowed freely and eclectically to create a new and dynamic hybrid civilization. The Persian cultural renaissance civilized the Eastern half of the Arab empire ( a renaissance that includes, incidentally, a stunning example of how much impact one person can have; that one person being the poet Ferdowsi) and Islamicate civilization in this region incoroporated many literate and highly sophisticated elements. In India, the Islamic elite was Persianized (and like all Muslim elites, partly Hellenized) while folk Islam was eclectic, assimilative and full of life, producing such poets and creative geniuses as Shah HusseinShah Latif and Waris Shah.  Khwaja Farid, a completely orthodox Punjabi poet of the 19th century, had no problem with writing that Adam must have been Hindu, since Hinduism is the oldest religion of man. The poet Jaun Elya (a Marxist/anarchist not particularly friendly to organized religion) wrote that when he was growing up 70 years ago, the Mullahs and Ulama who taught him and his brothers would be unrecognizable to Pakistanis of today. They were cultured and sophisticated people, with fine manners and elaborate courtesies, whose Islam was self-confident  and  literate and was light years away from the ignorant and barbarous world of the Ulama, Jihadists and Generals of today.  But while there was no one thousand year writer’s block, something else did happen; the Americans found oil in Saudi Arabia and simultaneously discovered that hardline Islam was a bulwark against communism. Those two discoveries joined with other wider worldwide trends and existing strains of fascist Islam to inject life into the most vicious and most barbaric strains of Islam and have played a very big role in bringing us to today.

Again, it must be emphasized that it was not always thus. Tabari’s history is in no way limited by his status as a major exegete of orthodox Islam (albeit one whose school did not survive the competition).  Muslim scholars struggled with every question and took almost every conceivable philosophic position in the time of the Abbassids and their successors. Though the so-called “golden age” was not always that golden, it was a time of great creative effort and intellectual exchange, in no way comparable to the brain-dead theology of modern-day Islamic militants.  And this willingness to read and learn from many sources did not die a thousand years ago. It has been dealt a body blow relatively recently, with the union of oil wealth, Wahhabi ideology and cold-war requirements.  And this is not to deny the simpler political explanations of many current conflicts, but over and above the miasma generated by the usual problems of the world (land, occupation, injustice, etc.), there is an additional layer of insanity and it has the potential to co-opt and devour many other struggles and arguments and push them over to barbarism.

Individually, Shia Muslims outside of Iran and South Lebanon have an advantage over us Sunnis. They do not have to deal with Shia theology or mythology as a concrete alternative to existing political arrangements, so one can be liberal, agnostic, fascist or anything else, and  still maintain a reasonably healthy relationship with the annual Shia passion play and its associated historical myths.  But for Sunnis in the Sunni majority countries, the options appear to have shrunk . It was not always thus.  40 years ago, most leftists in Pakistan were protesting the Vietnam war and arguing whether Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was a leftist or a feudal. No one regarded the Islamic parties as a serious alternative to anything and voters agreed, wiping out most of those parties in elections.  Today, we may still wish to ignore the jihadists and their insane projects (exemplified by this refusal by Hafiz Saeed to show his face on a TV interview because appearing on video is against Islam), but they won’t let us ignore them.  Slowly but steadily the Islamists are forcing Sunnis to face the unpleasant fact that if they continue to ignore the Islamists, their own freedom to deal with issues without invoking an imaginary history of Islam, will be severely restricted.

For completeness, it must be added that there are other options. For example, matters like the blasphemy law can be subsumed into an academic Western debate about postmodernism and cultural relativism if you are a Westernizedpostmodern thinker, safely ensconced in New York and thoroughly immersed in the categories and arguments of the Western academy.  But this route is not available to most of the citizens of the Muslim world (and would be stunningly incongruous there outside of a few Universities, which, as islands of Western influence, will value such scholars).  For everyone else, a rather dramatic opening up of the debate is urgently needed. What is needed is not just a new look at history, but an outbreak of cultural creativity, using literature, painting, music and movies to explore and re-create the entire history of Islam. Imagine how many movies can be made about the first and second civil wars alone! When I first read Tabari’s account of the last days of Uthman, where the aged caliph, abandoned by most of his comrades and besieged by rebellious soldiers, goes to the mosque and defends himself in an eloquent Friday sermon,  I imagined many different ways such a scene could be played and many talented actors who could play it. For example, we could haveAmitabh Bachan as the caliph, making his speech and softening hearts, but then a rebel played by Nana Patekar rises to condemn him and the mood of the crowd changes, ending with the aged caliph being pelted with stones. There must be ten movies in that scene alone, and Tabari has hundreds of other dramatic scenes to choose from.  And imagine how many talented novelists would love to have a crack on these characters and their cosmic struggles. Unfortunately, instead of getting better, in some places, things have gone from bad to worse.  There is no thousand year writer’s block, but there is indeed a very large damper that has been thrown relatively recently on Sunni Islam, and its time we return to the freer time of  AttarRumiHafez and Khusro,  even if we cannot yet make all the movies we want.

Courtesy: Accidental Blogger


No Rapture, Israelis Are Khazars, False Preachers–This Sounds Like My Kind of Church!

Is Modern-Day Israel in Bible Prophecy? Are Modern-day Jews of Abraham Seed?

Millions expect Israel to play a major role in God’s future plan for earth. Could they all be wrong? Is there a conspiracy to deceive God’s people? What is the Biblical evidence concerning modern day Israel?

Many people today consider the restoration of the Jewish nation in Palestine to be a direct and dramatic fulfillment of Bible prophecy.
Hal Lindsey’s The Late Great Planet Earth, a phenomenal best seller of the last few decades, and Jerry Jenkins and Tim Lahaye’s Lift Behind, along with Bishop T.D. Jakes declares that the end of the world will come within the lifetime of the generation that saw the founding of the Israeli state in 1948, hereby applying the words of Jesus: “This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” (Matthew 24:34)

Coupled with this fascination with Israel is a novel teaching regarding the return of Jesus, called the “secret rapture.” These books and many other speaks for many today who expect God secretly to take the “church” to heaven prior to the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple on its old site where the sacred Muslim shrine, the Dome of the Rock, now stands. According to this position, after the “church” is “raptured” to heaven, there will be seven years of the worst period of famine, bloodshed, and pestilence ever experienced by man. During this great tribulation the focus will be on God’s dealings with the Jews, who are again given the responsibility for the evangelization of the world.

According to secret-rapture preachers, the battle of Armageddon will climax the end of the seven-year tribulation as the nations of the earth take sides over the future of Israel. When mankind teeters on the brink of incinerating the world, Jesus will return gloriously and save man from self-extinction. At that time Jesus will set up a literal one-thousand-year reign on earth with Jerusalem functioning as the spiritual capital of the world.

Most evangelical periodicals and pulpits teach this view today, and to those who do not know better, it might appear that this prophetic scenario, known as pretribulationism, has been the traditional teaching of the Christian church since New Testament days. Nothing is further from the truth. Be not deceived.. Did the architects of the creation of modern day Israel have any thing to do with the development of the rapture theory? Where did the Rapture theology originate? Is the crisis in the Middle East and the war in the Iraq have anything to do with the erroneous rapture theory?

Is there a master conspiracy at work?

According to dispensationalists John Hagee, Jack van Impe, Ken Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, John Walvoord, Grant Jefferies, Tim Lahaye, Benny Hinn, Clarence Larkin, H. Caldwell, TD Jakes and others who teach and preach about the Rapture, Israel has two dispensations, or time periods, in which they functions as God’s special instrument of salvation. Between these two periods of time comes the dispensation of the “church”. The church received a heavenly reward at the time of the rapture, while Israel received an earthly reward at the end of the tribulation.

There is no support in the New Testament for such an erroneous view.

The chief reason why the modern state of Israel has no prophetic significance is that after the Jews as a body rejected Jesus as the Messiah, God gave to the Christian church the special privileges, responsibilities, and prerogatives once assigned to the ancient Jews. No longer were the Jews to be His special people with a prophetic destiny.

Rom.2:28 For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh; vs.29 but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.

All the promises of a glorious kingdom on earth once given through the Jewish prophets to the Jewish people became void because the Jewish people as a nation did not fulfill the conditions of these prophecies. Failing to receive the glory that could have been Israel’s is probably the saddest story in literature. Placed at the crossroads of the ancient world, God furnished them with every facility for becoming the greatest nation on the earth. God wanted to reward Israel with every physical and spiritual blessing as they put into practice the clear-cut principles that He had graciously taught them through His prophets (Deuteronomy 7, 8, 28).

The Old Testament records the sad story of how the vineyard of Israel produced, not the mature fruit of a Christ-like character, but “wild grapes,” a misinterpretation and perversion of what the God of Israel was really like. “What more was there to do for my vineyard, that I have not done in it? When I looked for it to yield grapes, why did it yield wild grapes?” (Isaiah 5:4 RSV).

Even when the Jewish nation was suffering the bitter consequences of disobedience during the Babylonian captivity, God mercifully promised that a restored Israel was possible and that there was yet time to recover its special role as His representative on earth – if it would honor His law and submit to His principles. Even then the Jews could have become, if faithful, the head and not the tail, in matters physical and spiritual; all nations would have looked upon Jerusalem as not only the center of wisdom but also the spiritual capital of the world (see Isaiah 45:14; 60:1 – 11).

When the Jews returned to Palestine after the Babylonian captivity, the promises given to Abraham and expanded through the writings of Moses and other prophets would have been fulfilled; the whole earth would have been alerted for the first advent of Christ, even as the way is being prepared for His second coming today.

Missed Their Last Opportunity.

These Old Testament prophecies that picture Israel dwelling in peace and prosperity, with all nations beating a path to her doors, could have been fulfilled 2000 years ago if they had indeed prepared the world for the first coming of Jesus (see Zechariah 8:14). But instead of fulfilling their greatest assignment they missed their last opportunity, and Jesus their Lord finally had to pronounce with irrevocable judgement: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not Behold your house is forsaken and desolate” (Matthew 23:37, 38 RSV).

Those who regard the establishment of the modern state of Israel as a fulfillment of those Old Testament prophecies overlook the fact that these promises were made either prior to their release from Babylonian captivity or during the rebuilding days soon after their return. God would have fulfilled these promises if Israel had been faithful and obedient to the conditions on which the promises were made.

Although God promised a “second chance” to Israel after their failure leading up to the Babylonian captivity, He promised no “third chance” to them after their final rejection when their Lord Himself “came to his own home, and his own people received him not” (John 1:11 RSV)
But God did not give up, even though Israel as a nation had failed Him. Although corporate Israel no longer was to function as God’s special agent, the individual Jews who received and obeyed Jesus Christ would constitute the new organization through which He would now work.
Paul describes this remarkable transition in Romans 9 to 11, where he appeals to individual Jews (such as himself) to respond to God through Jesus, join those Gentiles who have found in Him the solution to their anxious, sinful condition, and together arouse the world to the simple fact that God wants to make an end to sin and its misery by setting up His eternal kingdom composed of those who have found in Jesus the promised Saviour.

Those who preach and teach this erroneous Rapture doctrine are purposely misleading multitudes. This doctrine was created by the Jesuits as an anti-reformation and anti-protestant tool to divert attention away from the Catholic and the Pope whom the reformers had identify as the anti-Christ in Revelation. Those who teach and preach the rapture theory are proxies and agents for the Kabbalists and those who want to establish a New World Order (NWO). The Rapture theory has more to do with politics than theology, more to do with mans involvement in world affairs than Gods involvement, more about Zionism than the people of Zion.

 

THE KHAZAR EMPIRE AND ITS HERITAGE
Arthur Koestler

…but that does not alter the fact that the large majority of surviving Jews in the world is of Eastern European — and thus perhaps mainly of Khazar — origin. If so, this would mean that their ancestors came not from the Jordan but from the Volga, not from Canaan but from the Caucasus, once believed to be the cradle of the Aryan race; and that genetically they are more closely related to the Hun, Uigur “ 

This book traces the history of the ancient Khazar Empire, a major but almost forgotten power in Eastern Europe, which in the Dark Ages became converted to Judaism. Khazaria was finally wiped out by the forces of Genghis Khan, but evidence indicates that the Khazars themselves migrated to Poland and formed the cradle of Western Jewry…

The Khazars’ sway extended from the Black Sea to the Caspian, from the Caucasus to the Volga, and they were instrumental in stopping the Muslim onslaught against Byzantium, the eastern jaw of the gigantic pincer movement that in the West swept across northern Africa and into Spain.

In the second part of this book, “The Heritage,” Mr. Koestler speculates about the ultimate faith of the Khazars and their impact on the racial composition and social heritage of modern Jewry. He produces a large body of meticulously detailed research in support of a theory that sounds all the more convincing for the restraint with which it is advanced. Yet should this theory be confirmed, the term “anti-Semitism” would become void of meaning, since, as Mr. Koestler writes, it is based “on a misapprehension shared by both the killers and their victims. The story of the Khazar Empire, as it slowly emerges from the past, begins to look like the most cruel hoax which history has ever perpetrated.”

The God Theory

 

[SEE: THE ONE TRUE RELIGION]

“He looks at the idea we are in fact one consciousness experiencing itself via billions of different points of view.  Like the pure white light coming from a projector, things only come into focus—ideas, concepts, places, people, emotions—once we put a slide in front of the beam to be displayed and interpreted.

The white light is ‘God,’ infinite potential, all life, all laws, there is no separation.  By taking away parts of the white and replacing it with color, things come into being, while remaining part of the background white.”

The God Theory

Universes, Zero-Point Fields, and What’s Behind It All

By Bernard Haisch, Ph.D

SOURCE: New Dawn Magazine

 

Compassion VS. Antichrists

Compassion VS. Antichrists

eileen fleming

William Blake wrote, “Imagination is Evidence of the Divine” and I agree totally, but must add that genuine Compassion is a Manifestation of The Divine.

All of the Koran’s 114 chapters except one begins with the phrase “Allah [which is Arabic for God] is merciful and compassionate.”

A true Muslim recognizes the brotherhood of man and will respect and treat even a non-Muslim as a brother.

A true Muslims understand that compassion and charity, is serving God.

The Koran states, “No man is a true believer unless he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself.”
Learn More Here:

COMPASSION is Manifestation of The Divine

The cult of ‘Christian’ Zionism is what the concept of the Anti-Christ is all about.

This heretical theology of Premellenial Dispensation worships a god of Armageddon and not the God of love, forgiveness and compassion that Jesus/AKA The Prince of Peace modeled even while being nailed to a cross.

The Left Behind series of fiction is the epitome of what millennium of theologians have always understood to be what the term anti-Christ is truly about.

The term “Antichrist” only appears five times in the Bible, but a cult not based on sound theology has created an urban legend that seeks Armageddon.

The term “Antichrist” never appears in John’s Revelation or Daniel, two disparate works of literature written three centuries apart and under very different circumstances, yet the Left Behinder’s weave them together.

The small texts that mention the “Antichrist” were written to attack the Gnostic understanding of who Christ was. A Gnostic relies on intuition and not on dogma and doctrine. Gnostic’s were most certainly free spirits and most all of the writings we have about Gnostics, have been the attacks upon them. That all changed when the Nag Hamadi Library was translated and published, for what had been deemed heretical by those in power in the fourth century can now be read in most every language.

Biblical scholars today agree that many books of the Bible were written by others in the name of an apostle, for the quickest way to gain credibility is to trade on another’s reputation. We may never know if the author who coined the term “Antichrist” was actually the apostle John who wrote I John and 2 John-the only sources where the term appears.

John also say’s much more: “Dear Children, as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many have come.”- I John 2:18

“This is how we know who the children of God are not: anyone who does not do right; nor anyone who does not love his brother.”-I John 3:10

“If anyone has material possessions and see’s his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?  Let us love with actions and in truth.”-I John 3:17

“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out all fear because fear has to do with punishment [and God is love].”-1 John 4:18

The theology promoted in the Left Behind fiction is a theology based on fear and punishment. These misinformed Christians worship a punitive father as God. They do not have eyes to see that nature is God’s primary temple, and war the greatest abomination.  (read HERE)

Even Christians Become Violent Mobs Over Goofy Pictures

[Forgive me for the following blasphemous picture.  What would have been the reaction if this had been a picture of Mohammed (PBUH)?  What kind of despicable human being would put this in a first grade children’s book?]

Objectionable Jesus poster sparks violence in Punjab town

Batala (Punjab): An indefinite curfew was imposed in this Punjab town Saturday after tension prevailed following the publication of a poster depicting Jesus Christ in an objectionable manner. Clashes also broke out as some members of the Christian community forced shopkeepers to down shutters.

The curfew was imposed after members of the Christian community came to know about the poster, depicting Jesus Christ holding a beer can in one hand and what appeared to be either a cigarette or a chicken leg in the other.

They started gathering in the town and forced the shopkeepers to close their shops, leading to clashes. The police intervened when they tried to burn a few buildings.

Batala, 40 km from Amritsar, has a sizeable Christian population and several leading schools and other institutions have been run by the community for the past several decades.

The curfew will continue till further orders, officials said here.

Punjab police chief P S Gill said a case had been registered against the printer of the objectionable poster.

“The printing press in which the controversial poster was printed had been sealed and a case has been registered against the accused at the police station in Jalandhar’s Division No. 4.

“Additional forces have been sent to sensitive areas to restore the confidence of the people,'”Gill said in Chandigarh, 250 km from here.

2008 recorded maximum number of communal incidents in last five years: Govt

Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is also the state home minister, condemned the act and said no one would be allowed to disturb the peace of the state.

Pictures of Jesus Christ holding a cigarette in one hand and a beer can in the other in a book for primary classes triggered a row in Meghalaya on Friday. The objectionable pictures were found in the cursive writing exercise books at a school in Shillong.

The Catholic Church in India has banned in all its member schools New Delhi-based Skyline Publications for printing the pictures in class 1 cursive writing books.

Cigarette-holding Jesus in textbook triggers row

2010-02-19 11:12:00
Last Updated: 2010-02-19 11:24:15
Shillong: Pictures of Jesus Christ holding a cigarette in one hand and a beer can in another in a book for primary classes has triggered a row in Meghalaya and the state government is now contemplating legal action against the New Delhi-based publisher.

The objectionable pictures of Jesus Christ found in the cursive writing exercise copies at a private school in capital Shillong was brought to the notice of the influential church by some guardians.

“We are shocked and hurt by this act where Jesus Christ has been portrayed in a highly objectionable manner…we condemn the total lack of respect for religions by the publisher,” Dominc Jala, the Archbishop of Shillong, said.

New Delhi-based Skyline Publication produced the copies meant for students of Class 1.

“Just imagine students at such an impressionable age being dished out objectionable images which are nothing but blasphemous,” said T. Jrwa, another church leader.

The Meghalaya government acted swiftly by confiscating all the copies from the school and also from book shops.

“Although private schools are not bound by the prescribed textbooks of the Meghalaya Board of Secondary Education, still we took immediate action by seizing all the copies and if deemed fit we might even take legal steps,” said Meghalaya Education Minister Ampareen Lyngdoh.

Also read: Sea of secrets: Over 5,000 new marine species found

An estimated 72 percent of the 2.32 million people in Meghalaya are Christians.

Everyone but Christians understands that Jesus was nonviolent.-Gandhi

‘Christian’ Crusaders and Failures of Intelligence in the US Military

eileen fleming

Thirty years ago, Glyn Bindon, the founder of Trijicon, a Michigan Defense contractor, instituted the practice of stamping references to New Testament Bible verses on combat rifle sights manufactured for the U.S. military.

Trijicon has now released a statement that they will quit their three decades of practice and also provide the armed forces modification kits to remove the Scripture citations from the 300,000 telescoping sights already in use by the Marines, Army and which are being used to train Afghanistan troops.

Beyond the charges of breaking the American government rule that bars proselytizing by American troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, this ABC video clip exposes a thriving Crusader mentality in the US Military and a gross failure of intelligence by Christian’s regarding their own faith.

Vodpod videos no longer available.
more about “Marines Have Secret Bible Verses on G…“, posted with vodpod

In the video, US Chaplain Hensley, informs the troops, “Special Forces hunt men. We do the same thing as Christians. We hunt people to get them into the kingdom; that’s our business.”

The Chaplain is a heretic, for “How can you kill people, when it is written in God’s commandment: ‘Thou shalt not murder’?”– Leo Tolstoy, The Kingdom of God Is Within You.

Tolstoy understood that commandment meant that all governments who wage war are directly affronting the Christian principles that should guide all life, and shouldn’t being pro-life really be about honoring the sacredness of every life that already is?

Standard issue to U.S. special operations forces is the Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight, which is marked “JN8:12”  a reference to John 8:12:

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

The Trijicon Reflex sight is stamped with “2COR4:6”

For God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

An army spokesman admitted on January 21, 2010, that the service was unaware of the coded biblical references until a few days ago, and so, our troops are also in the dark because of failures of intelligence in the Military establishment as well as due to heretical Christianity.

Christ was born, lived and died a nonviolent Palestinian Jew, who taught his follower’s to put down the sword, to forgive, pray and love one’s enemies; and not to shoot, bomb, torture or kill any!

Jesus envisioned a society based on love and tolerance, which is completely incompatible with war and all violence. When Jesus was mocked, whipped and nailed to a cross he remained NONVIOLENT to prove the only way to over throw the status quo of violent retaliation and eye-for-an-eye mentality.

Clement, Tertillian, Polycarp and every other early Church Father taught that violence was a contradiction of what Christ was about. The first and greatest heresy in the Christian faith occurred when Augustine penned the “Just War Theory” which united church with state and “our problems stem from our acceptance of this filthy, rotten system.”-Dorothy Day

Within one hundred years after Emperor Constantine decreed Christianity the religion of the state, soldiers were required to be baptized; but it was not required for them to understand what the faith was all about.

“The Crusade for a Christian Military: Jesus Killed Mohammed” by Jeff Sharlet in HARPER’S May 2009 edition illuminated how the entrenchment of Christian fundamentalism in the USA military began during the Cold War, accelerated during the Vietnam era and which has wrecked havoc on the very soul of our nation in the 21st century.
Fundamentalist [referred to as evangelical by Sharlet] Chaplains began to join the military in droves as they aligned themselves with the Industrial Military Complex in opposition with Catholics and mainline moderate Protestant denominations such as Methodists, Presbyterians, and Episcopalians who were of one voice speaking out against American terrorism in Vietnam and for following in the ways of the nonviolent Jesus.
“Starting in 1987, Protestant denominations were lumped together simply as “Protestant”; moreover, the Pentagon began accrediting hundreds of evangelical and Pentecostal “endorsing agencies,” allowing graduates of fundamentalist Bible colleges—which often train clergy to view those from other faiths as enemies of Christ—to fill up nearly the entire allotment for Protestant chaplains. Today, more than two thirds of the military’s 2,900 active-duty chaplains are affiliated with evangelical or Pentecostal denominations.” [1]
“For decades, the military built a sense of solidarity out of a singular purpose, the Cold War struggle between free markets and state-planned economies—the shining city on a hill versus the evil empire…meshed neatly with ideologies [that connected] nationalism and fundamentalism…Communism…the dark alternative should we fail to unite. Fundamentalism thrived…a neat, black-and-white [theology and] a foreign policy. The end of the Cold War deprived militant evangelicals of that clarity [and] the emergence of “radical Islam” [became] the object of a new Cold War.” [Ibid]
The roots of American evangelism sprang from the original altar call for Christians to stand up against slavery and what has been passing for Christianity today is the antithesis of what Jesus was all about.

“Everyone but Christians understands that Jesus was nonviolent.”-Gandhi
One of the greatest Christian spiritual leaders of all time, Thomas Merton, a Trappist monk who listened to Bob Dylan LP’s in his hermitage in Kentucky during the ’60’s and was the first religious voice to rise up and speak out against the Vietnam War warned, “The duty of the Christian at this time is to do the one task God has imposed upon us in this world today. The task is to work for the total abolition of war. There can be no question that unless war is abolished; the world will remain constantly in a state of madness…The church [meaning all Christians] must lead the way on the road to the abolition of war…Peace is to be preached and nonviolence is to be explained and practiced.”
The spiritual darkness of Christian fundamentalism is also rampant in the USA Air Force Academy in Colorado which enabled the likes of Walid Shoebat, author of “Why We Want to Kill You” to speak to the troops in his role as a former fundamentalist Islamic supposed terrorist who converted to fundamentalist Christianity.
Shoebat is one of the infamous darlings of fear filled Christians and Jews [Read More: The Walid Shoebat Show and “America is Beautiful, but she has an ugly side.” – Neil Young

http://wearewideawake.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=814&Itemid=197] of the cult spewed by the likes of John Hagee and the idiot wind blown by FOX’s Hannity & Colmes, Bill O’Reilly and Neil Cavuto who have all hosted Shoebat.

At the US Air Force Academy on Feb. 6, 2008, Shoebat was the headline act at their annual political forum.
Walid Shoebat, has built a lucrative speaking career by manipulating the fears and whipping up hatred between Jews and Muslims. Shoebat insists that Israel should “wake up and smell the Hummus. We must return to the status quo – the occupation…Israel should stand strong and fight – dismantle Hamas and take away all the weapons, the way it used to be. The introduction of weapons into Palestinian society by Israel [under the Oslo accords, Israel gave assault rifles to Arafat’s ‘police force’ –ed.] was a disaster and they must be confiscated.” [2]
Israel originally supported Hamas to be a wedge between Fatah when Arafat became too popular with the Palestinian people.
Shoebat feels very strongly that the ongoing war against Israel has nothing to do with an Arab desire for a Palestinian state, “Never in history was there a Palestinian state, we never wanted a Palestinian state – even today the Palestinians do not want a Palestinian state…They want the destruction of the Jews, period. It’s a religious holy war.”[IBID]
During his time at the Air Force Academy, Jeff Sharlet encountered fervent fundamentalist militant American soldiers who were ignorant of their very own faith, for the Christian “manifesto is the Sermon on the Mount, which means that we will try to be peacemakers.” -Dorothy Day
There are currently thirty-five wars being fought in the world and the USA is connected to every one of them.

Over forty-thousand people die every day of starvation and three billion humans endure dire destitution. Unmanned drones under the Obama Administration have murdered hundreds of children and America warehouses over twenty-five thousand nuclear weapons; and yet, many deluded Christians believe the US is a Christian nation!

We the people of the world inhabit a world darkened by bureaucratic systematic institutionalized structures of violence that kill human beings through war, poverty and all the consequences of destruction and despair that flow from corporate greed, violence and fundamentalist religiosity.
Nonviolence is at the core of every religion and Jesus promised it is the peacemakers who are the daughters and sons of God. Jesus denounced injustice, turned over the tables of the bankers in the Temple, was arrested, jailed, tortured and brutally executed, but remained nonviolent, compassionate and forgiving to all.
Jesus called us to love our neighbors- meaning everyone on the planet, to be compassionate and seek justice for the disenfranchised, to forgive our enemies and to put down the sword!

His death on the cross was in vain if those who claim to follow him do not have eyes to see and ears to hear that his message was that we are to end the cycle of violence for God created, loves and is within all beings and all of creation.
It is a lack of imagination that accepts a future of endless war.

It is fear of the other that fuels fundamentalism.

The brand of Christianity being espoused in many US pulpits and in the military is a fear-filled ideology that supports empire in this world which has nothing to do with what Jesus stood and died for: nonviolence, love, forgiveness and compassion- not just towards those who think and look like you, but to your ‘enemies’ too!
The militarization of Christianity defies that “God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out all fear because fear has to do with punishment.” 1 John 4:16, 18
The militarization of Christianity as professed by anti-Christ’s [against the teachings of Christ] from the pulpits of the likes of Pat Robertson and John Hagee and in the fictional “Left Behind” series of profane theology expose the spirit of the anti-Christ: fear of the other that drives one to violence.
The militarization of Christianity thrives on fear of the other but Jesus said: “FEAR NOT! You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.”
The militarization of Christianity leaves behind all the non-negotiable’s for those who claim to be a Christian; which is you must forgive, bless and love your enemies; not shoot, bomb, torture, starve or occupy them!
The problem is not with Christianity but that too few have done it the way Jesus taught and modeled: to always work for PEACEFUL resolutions, even to the point of returning violence with compassion and forgiveness, as Jesus did when nailed to a cross and he prayed: “Father forgive them, they do not know what they are doing.”
Christians are called to prayerfully use the gift of discernment and to test all things according to the teachings of Jesus. An authentic follower of Jesus- and perhaps any with a conscience- will choose equality, fraternity, community and nonviolent creative resistance to the evil that is violence as well as comprehend that evil as well as good cut through every human heart.
It is willful ignorance, apathy, arrogance and misinformation that are holding back the transformation of hearts and minds to see that war is the ultimate form of terrorism and violence the supreme expression of the spirit of the anti-Christ.

“The first casualties of the military’s fundamentalist front are not the Iraqis and Afghans on the wrong side of an American F-16. They’re the spiritual warriors themselves.” [3]

Christ laid down in the Sermon on the Mount principles by which to guide lives and he warned that, “Whoever hears these sayings of mine, and put them into practice, I will liken him to a wise man, who built his house upon a rock; and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded upon a rock.  And everyone that hears these sayings, and does not put them into practice, shall be likened to a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand; and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was its fall.” (Matt. 7:24-27)

St. Paul warned all followers of Christ to never judge the non-believer, for it is none of your business. But, when it comes to the believer, you must provoke one another onto good works.
The militarization of Christianity and all terrorism committed in the name of God must be challenged in a world desperate for Christians who actually follow what Jesus was all about.

1. Jeff Sharlet, HARPER’S, May 2009 pages 31-43.

2. http://as-clips.blogspot.com/2007/09/shoebat-from-plo-terrorist-to-lover-of.html

3. Sharlet, HARPER’S.

Other Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/21/trijicon-will-remove-secr_n_432349.html

Eileen Fleming,
Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org

Muslim Resistance to the British Police State

[SEE: Banning Islam4UK is not enough.]

[I want to thank interviewer Joe Dyke for conducting the interview and for posting it on There Are No Sunglasses.  Mr. Choudary makes some very valid points about resistance to the subjugation and the tightening the screws on everyone in Britain, not just the Muslims and other immigrants.  He is also being unfair to the suppressed population of Iran, but he is correct that Khoemeini was empowered by a British/US psyop.   I can dismiss a lot of his anti-Iranian views as Sunni/Shia hostility, but in real Islam there is no dividing line.  All are oppressed.  All must be set free.  It is the same for Christian liberation theology.]

Interview with Anjem Choudary – Head of Islam4UK

Posted by Joe Dyke

This week the government announced that they were to ban the extremist Muslim group Islam4UK following the public outcry over the planned protest at Wootton Bassett. It is clear that most British people find the group’s views offensive: they espouse Sharia law in the UK, the domination of Islam across the globe and are accused of encouraging suicide bombings in the UK.

What is up for debate is whether a ban will be effective – at least twice before Anjem Choudarys party’s have been banned before and, through a variety of semantic tricks, the trained lawyer has been able to reinvent the organisation under new names.

Gaps in the Dialogue speaks to one of Britain’s most hated men about why he feels the ban will make his party stronger, his failure to condemn suicide bombings, and the Iranian revolution.

Q: Islam4UK is to be banned following the threats of a march in Wootton Bassett. Do you regret calling and then cancelling the march?

A: No, not at all. We raised awareness about the plight of the thousands of innocent men, women and children who have been slaughtered in Afghanistan by the US-led alliance and of which Britain is a part. We believe that the people in Britain are blissfully unaware of the true costs of the war. They have been lied to by the Brown regime just as Tony Blair before told them that they were in danger from weapons of mass destruction and this has proven to be a lie. Gordon Brown wants to tell the British public that their security begins in Kabul, that if British, are not in Kabul that they will be targeted here in Britain and again this is a lie. Ultimately the presence of US and British troops in Afghanistan is a cause of instability in the region and of course the cause of untold amounts of deaths and destruction. But it is also the cause of insecurity back home in Britain. I believe that the idea of the procession back home in Wootton Bassett was successful in highlighting many of these points and many people would have appreciated the fact that we highlighted those issues.

Q: But previously you had been allowed to protest and now these are going to be curtailed on the back of the idea of the march…

A: Ultimately you cannot ban every single platform and every single party and every single organisation that I am a part of. If that’s the case then I would think about joining the British government, maybe then can be banned as well. I will continue to propagate Islam, I am a committed Muslim, we don’t need to have a platform, we don’t need to have a name. I will continue to court Islam, I will continue to invite people to the Sharia, I will continue to raise my voice about the injustices the British government are committing both overseas and domestically. That work will never stop, it is a duty upon me as a Muslim just as I will continue to pray and fast, these things cannot be stopped. The amount of support we have received from the Muslim community post the ban, and even from the non-Muslim community, is something that we never even imagined. We have become so much more popular than we were before.

Q: Can you describe your conversion from being a medical student in Southampton where, according to reports, you drank and were very loose with religion, to radical Islam?

A: Firstly, there is no distinction between one type of Islam and another type of Islam, this is a division which has been invented in the media and by the government to marginalise some people. You are either a practicing Muslim or you are not a practicing Muslim, there is no such thing as a radical Muslim or an extremist Muslim or a moderate Muslim. The second thing is I do believe that God is the one who guides therefore he guided me from my situation before when I was practicing to my situation when I became practicing. You need to judge people on what they are now, not on what they were 25 years ago.

Q So you would say you were not a Muslim before?

A: I was a Muslim before but my guidance is in the hands of God and when I was not practicing, that is something which ultimately is my fault. I was guided by God and you don’t want to believe everything you read in the media.

Q: Will you condemn 9/11 and 7/7?

A: I will condemn the American and British government and their occupation of Muslim land, I will condemn the media for lying about Muslim, I will condemn those chocolate Muslims who melt in any form for the British government and I will condemn those people who are in silence, because silence ultimately is corrupt.

Q: So you won’t condemn 9/11 and 7/7?

A: I have already said to you what I will condemn. You asked me what I will condemn, and I have said.

Q: So specifically you won’t condemn them?

A: I won’t repeat my answer but you’ve got in on tape.

Q: Ok lets move on. Which is a higher priority, the end of British and American involvement in Afghanistan or the introduction of Sharia law in the UK?

A: I think they both go hand in hand. Ultimately our objective is the domination of Islam worldwide. We do believe that that will begin by the Sharia being established somewhere in the world, whether that be in Afghanistan or Iraq or Britain Allah only knows, but once its been established it will have a foreign policy or annexing other land to it until one day, as the prophet promised, the authority of the Muslims will be over the whole of the world.

Q: Do you really believe that in the Middle East Muslims would unite in the event of an American withdrawal from the region? There has been masses of inter-sectarian violence in the Middle East that has little to do with America

A: There are two types of obstacles to the unity of Muslims. One type is the physical obstacles of the regime which is in power at the moment, these need to be removed. There are also the intellectual obstacles, many people adopt the false ideas of liberalism and secularism as opposed to Islam. So I think that on the one hand we need to create an intellectual revolution on the ground but at the same time we need to tell the people that they have a responsibility to remove these forces and corrupted regimes. There is a revival taking place and we are heading towards, god willing, re-establishing Islamic domination.

Q: What, for example, is your position on the Iranian revolution?

A: I don’t believe that the Iranian revolution had anything at all to do with Islam. It had a lot to do with the shift of interests between the British and the Americans and ultimately the new Ayatollah’s regime were more American than the Shah who was more pro-British. We haven’t been in a position where the Sharia has been implemented for over 85 years.

Q: So are you saying that the Ayatollah Khomeini was an American plant?

A: Regardless of what we see directly as his actions, suddenly he is looking after the interests of the Americans in the region

Q: You claim benefits from the state. How is this justified?

A: If we were living under the Sharia everyone would have the basic right food and shelter as a matter of divine right but the mere fact that your basics are being provided by a state doesn’t mean that you cannot rise against justice and oppression.

Q: Where does Islam4UK attract support from?

A: We attract support from all sections of society. The majority of the people will be from the youth, from 15 to about 25, they are the people always on the frontline of any struggle. Most of our membership is from that kind of spectrum.

Q: In terms of funding?

A: We don’t talk about that

Q: Do you accept that you put other Muslims in the UK in danger through your actions?

A: That’s a nonsense. The British government is organising a whole raft of draconian measures which is faced by the Muslim community, in terms of stop and search, raids, demonising, vilification. The media, whipping the masses into an anti-Muslim frenzy, they are putting the Muslims in danger. Not organisations like ours who are raising awareness and forbidding the oppression of man-made law.

Q: What will you do next?

A: I can’t stop being a Muslim, I can’t stop praying, I can’t stop fasting, I can’t stop commanding good and forbidding evil, I can’t stop calling for the Sharia. I will continue to do what I need to do but how I will do it you will have to wait and see.


Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)

The Sorry State of US Christianity and The Untaken Path

What Brit Hume doesn’t know about Buddhism and the Sorry State of US Christianity

eileen fleming

Last week on the Bill O’Reilly show, Brit Hume advised Tiger Woods that he should turn from Buddhism to Christianity.

On ‘O’Reilly’, Brit Hume Reaffirms His Faith; Tells Tiger Woods He Should to Turn to Christianity

The truth is that the best Christians are also Buddhists, such as Thomas Merton, Trappist monk poet, social critic and mystic, who said: “I see no contradiction between Buddhism and Christianity. I intend to become as good a Buddhist as I can.” [Steindl-Rast, 1969, “Recollection of Thomas Merton’s Last Days in the West”]

The pre-Christian Merton was attracted to the mysticism of Aldous Huxley in the book, “Ends and Means,” which sowed the seeds of apophatic mysticism-meaning a knowledge of God obtained by negation-that sprouted into a relationship with Buddhist teachings about the Void and Emptiness. Merton also devoured Christian mystical writings by Pseudo-Dionysius, Gregory of Nyssa, Meister Eckhart and John of the Cross.

Merton understood that other religions and denominations all led down the same road and he grew deeper in his own faith through studying and respecting Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Zen.

The sorry state of US Christianity today is its lack of depth and a rigid fundamentalism [meaning one who has closed off to new thought] that see non-Christians as targets for conversion.

Merton understood that Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Islam all shared his belief that we all are searching for the ultimate truth.

Merton’s openness and commitment to Eastern religions were best expressed in the last words of his life, at the lecture he delivered at a Conference of Benedictine and Cistercian Abbots, on December 10, 1968, at Samutprakan, just south of Bangkok.

Merton spoke on Marxism and Monastic Perspectives and concluded with, “What is essential in the monastic life is not embedded in buildings, is not embedded even in a rule…It is concerned with the business of total inner transformation…all other things serve that end.

“I believe that by openness to Buddhism, to Hinduism, and to these great Asian traditions, we stand a wonderful chance of learning more about the potentiality of our own traditions, because they (the Asians) have gone, from the natural point of view, so much deeper into this than we have. The combination of the natural techniques and the graces and the other things that have been manifested in Asia, and the Christian liberty of the gospel should bring us all at last to that full and transcendent liberty which is beyond mere cultural difference and mere externals — and mere this and that.”

After his talk, Merton said he would take questions later on and, “so I will disappear.”

A few hours later he was found dead on the floor of his hotel room with a tall electric fan lying across his 53 year old body.

“There has been a lot of gossip about this, whether he was killed accidentally, or by an enemy. He had many enemies; the CIA feared he had connections in religious circles in Asia that might have an adverse effect on the U.S. war effort in Vietnam; the FBI felt the same kind of fear over his role in the peace movement in America; neither side in Vietnam liked him; the Communists, both Russian and Chinese, were suspicious of him.

“He had enemies who simply objected to his beliefs. He still has this type of enemy in the United States”And of course, there were enemies, some of them powerful, within his own Church, even with his own Order. And the latter probably felt even more justified in their opposition during Merton’s Asian trip.

“It could have been assassination by some unrevealed force, or it could have been what it was said to have been, just an accident”I suppose it’s something we will never know. There was no autopsy. The man who hated the war in Vietnam was shipped quickly back to the United States, via Vietnam, along with casualties of the war, in a U. S. Air Force plane.”

In January 1962, Merton wrote against the Bomb: “I have little confidence in Kennedy, I think he cannot fully measure up to the magnitude of his task, and lacks creative imagination and the deeper kind of sensitivity that is needed. Too much the Time and Life mentality, than which I can imagine nothing further, in reality, from, say, Lincoln. What is needed is really not shrewdness or craft, but what the politicians don’t have; depth, humanity and a certain totality of self-forgetfulness and compassion, not just for individuals but for man as a whole; a deeper kind of dedication. Maybe Kennedy will break through into that some day by miracle. But, such people are before long marked out for assassination.”

It was Merton’s faith filled compassion for people in distress that inspired his prolific writings on the social issues of civil rights, nuclear weapons, war and peace, and the Viet Nam War, and his religious superiors tried to silence him because of his literary protests.

Gandhi also inspired and influenced Merton in the way to find deeper roots of one’s own religious tradition by immersion in other faiths-and then returning “home” to one’s own heritage with a transformed consciousness.

Gandhi also said:

“What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty and democracy? If we are to teach real peace in this world, if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.”

2,000 years ago, a nonviolent Palestinian Jew, named Jesus taught his followers that they must be “born again” to enter the kingdom of God.

Reverend Richard Cross explained to me that, “Being “born again’ means more than just being baptized. It implies, at least for me, a metanoia (μετανοια -a turning around) of heart and commitment to live the values we find in the Gospel. The implications of this “conversion’ are unending.”[Learn More: http://www.users.cloud9.net/~recross/why-not/]

For me being “born again’ also implies a transformation of heart and mind to see The Divine in all people and circumstances.

The night before his death Merton said, “Zen and Christianity are the future.”

Merton warned that if Western Christianity continued to ignore “the spiritual heritage of the East,” it would “hasten the tragedy that threatens man and his civilizations.” (Mystics and Zen Masters, p. 46).

Compassion and hope were Merton’s motivations for his immersion into Buddhism and meaningful interfaith dialogue. He wanted to be a good Buddhist because he learned from that faith path how to be a better Christian.

Merton wrote that studying other faiths is not enough, but that “We must seek not merely to make superficial reports about the Asian traditions, but to live and share those traditions, as far as we can, by living them in their traditional milieu.” (Asian Journal, p. 313).

Merton integrated Buddhism with the Christian contemplative concept that the true self is where God is and “all is emptiness and all is compassion.”

See! See! My love is darkness!

Only in the Void,

Are all ways one:

Only in the night

Are all the lost

Found.

In my ending is my meaning.-The Night of Destiny

For Merton, “the anguish of the modern person was often based upon an addiction to a false self, one’s ego-mind, that only a realization of the no-self (Buddhism) or dying to one’s self (Christianity) could transform. Thus, the dialogue was not to be only an intellectual exercise, but a vital and compelling way to directly address the absence of freedom, compassion and meaning in contemporary living and society. And only people authentically free could really value and beneficially contribute to the dialogue since the purpose of it was to free people from the wheel of causation and suffering.”

The Sorry State of US Christianity:

St. Paul, who never failed to express his freedom of speech, warned the followers of Jesus, to not judge the unbeliever but to provoke the believer onto good works.

As a Christian Anarchist [meaning one who takes Jesus seriously but questions all ‘teachers of the law’] with Buddhist leanings, I am compelled to remind US Christians that the gospel-which means good news- that Jesus preached to the poor and oppressed was a direct challenge to the politically powerful and the arrogant, the self-satisfied, self-righteous teachers of the law and to every individual to do-or not do-to any other as you would or would not do unto God.

Not many US Christians are cognizant of the fact that Jesus was never a Christian, but was a social justice, radical revolutionary Palestinian devout Jewish road warrior who rose up and challenged the job security of the Temple authorities by teaching the people they did NOT need to pay the priests for ritual baths or sacrificing livestock to be OK with God; for God already LOVED them just as they were: sinners, poor, diseased, outcasts, widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners all living under Roman Military Occupation.

Even fewer consider that what got Jesus crucified was for disturbing the status quo of the Roman Occupying Forces by teaching subversive concepts such as Caesar only had power because God allowed it and that God preferred the humble sinner, the poor, diseased, outcasts, widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners all living under Roman Occupation above the elite and arrogant!

Two thousand years ago the Cross had NO symbolic religious meaning and was not a piece of jewelry. When Jesus said: “Pick up your cross and follow me,” everyone back then understood he was issuing a POLITICAL statement, for the main roads in Jerusalem were lined with crucified agitators, rebels, dissidents and any others who disturbed the status quo of the Roman Occupying Forces.

Perhaps Tiger Woods and any who reject Christianity is because they just haven’t seen the real deal in action.

Inspired by Saint Paul and Thomas Merton, I hope to provoke my sisters and brothers in Christ, with what Merton responded to the nun who complained to him at a rally against Vietnam that he hadn’t mentioned Jesus once in his speech:

“The duty of the Christian at this time is to do the one task God has imposed upon us in this world today. The task is to work for the total abolition of war. There can be no question that unless war is abolished; the world will remain constantly in a state of madness. The church [meaning all Christians] must lead the way on the road to the abolition of war. Peace is to be preached and nonviolence is to be explained and practiced.”

Perhaps, if Tiger heard that good news instead of all the ‘Christian’ judgments against him,  he might become a Buddhist-Christian and be closer to what Jesus was really on about than what is practiced by some US Christians.

Other SOURCES:

http://www.thomasmertonsociety.org/altany2.htm

http://www.therealmerton.com/tommie5.html

Only in Solidarity do “we have it in our power to begin the world again.”-Tom Paine

Eileen Fleming,
Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org

Feisty Little Lamb of God In the Wolves’ Den

Talking Zionism in the Financial Times and from the Mount of the Beatitudes

eileen fleming

Tony Judt is a University Professor at New York University who recently wrote that “Israel must unpick its ethnic myth” published first in the Financial Times. Judt  also provides the lead for this Christian Anarchist’s response regarding Zionism.

Judt wrote: What exactly is “Zionism”?

Its core claim was always that Jews represent a common and single people; that their millennia-long dispersion and suffering has done nothing to diminish their distinctive, collective attributes; and that the only way they can live freely as Jews – in the same way that, say, Swedes live freely as Swedes – is to dwell in a Jewish state.

I can certainly confirm, from personal experience, that anti-religious sentiment – often of an intensity that I found discomforting – was widespread in left-leaning Israeli circles of the 1960s. Religion, I was informed, was for the haredim and the “crazies” of Jerusalem’s Mea Sharim quarter. “We” are modern and rational and “western”, it was explained to me by my Zionist teachers. But what they did not say was that the Israel they wished me to join was therefore grounded, and could only be grounded, in an ethnically rigid view of Jews and Jewishness…

If the Jews of Europe and North America took their distance from Israel (as many have begun to do), the assertion that Israel was “their” state would take on an absurd air. Over time, even Washington might come to see the futility of attaching American foreign policy to the delusions of one small Middle Eastern state. This, I believe, is the best thing that could possibly happen to Israel itself. It would be obliged to acknowledge its limits. It would have to make other friends, preferably among its neighbours.

The civil war in Northern Ireland came to an end in part because an American president instructed the Irish emigrant community in the US to stop sending arms and cash to the Provisional IRA. If American Jews stopped associating their fate with Israel and used their charitable cheques for better purposes, something similar might happen in the Middle East. [1]

On March 20, 2006, I traveled three hours away from the Little Town of Bethlehem: Occupied Territory to the Mount of Beatitudes in Israel. The awe-inspiring site sits above the shimmering Sea of Galilee where Christ preached the Sermon on the Mount.

My Sabeel [Arabic for The Way] Reality Tour through the West Bank had concluded and I needed to be alone and silent, but I ended up delivering my own Sermon on the Mount.

At dinner a Catholic Pentecostal from Scotland introduced himself and asked me why I was there and what church I was from. I responded I have Irish Roman Catholic, Polish Jew, Russian Orthodox and Episcopal roots but that my rock is The Beatitudes.

He looked even more perplexed when I told him I came to the Mount of Beatitudes to decompress and reflect upon my nine days in Occupied Territory.

I asked him if he were aware of the work of Sabeel, the Palestinian founded organization that promotes a theology of liberation based on justice, peace, non-violence and reconciliation for all, regardless of faith path or nationality.

He sternly admonished me, “God gave this land to the Jews! The Bible never mentions Palestine, and that is that! God gave this land to the Jews and that is that!”

I responded just as fervently that the Palestinian Christians are the descendants of those who first followed Christ and they have been denied inalienable human rights by the Israeli government.

I told him the Christians in the Holy Land have shrunk from 20% of the total population to less than 1.3% since 1948 and if things don’t change soon, there will be no Christian witness in the land where Christ promised that it is the peacemakers who are the children of God.

He sputtered, “But the Jews have suffered! God gave this land to the Jews and that is that!”

That really got my Irish up and I retorted, “Yes they did suffer because good people did nothing for far too long, and now the once oppressed have become the oppressors. In the 21st century good people are unaware, ignoring or are in total denial of the injustices in the Holy Land. And what about all the Hebrew prophets, such as Micah who reminded the Jews of what the Lord requires: To be just, to be merciful and to walk humbly with your God!”

I could NOT shut up although I knew that that Scotsman was trying to get away and he looked most terrified by my passionate plea and as I was on a tear, I barely took a breath as I told him that instead of him staying in Israel for his entire visit, he should go and witness life in the occupied territories; go and see the effects of The Wall on his spirit and see what it has done to the Palestinian economy. I told him he should go and tour some of the six decades old refugee camps and see the ruins of all the uncompensated home demolitions.

I brought it on home by telling him that I also doubted that God was ever in the real estate business!

That Scotsman’s eyes had bugged out and his mouth had dropped open while the torrent of words spewed out of me and after I finally shut up, he stammered, “But there is suffering everywhere!”

I retorted, “Yes there is, and Christ always stood up for the poor and the oppressed. And he told us what ever we do or don’t do for the least and the outcast; we do it or don’t do it unto God.”

The Scot shook his head and turned and walked quickly away and never again looked my way again. Nobody else spoke to me the rest of the evening or the next day. That was fine with me, for I was listening to the voice within and what I kept hearing was Luke 23:34: “Father forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.”

But when you know and if you are of good will and a person of CONSCIENCE you must do something, and as the saying goes-we must preach to our own, so I address USA Christians regarding the fastest growing cult in the USA-and also perhaps in Scotland- the cult of Christian Zionism.

What is Christian Zionism?

Christian Zionism is an extremist Christian movement which supports the claims of those who believe that the State of Israel should take control of all of the land currently disputed between Palestinians and Israelis. It views the creation and expansion of the modern state of Israel as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy toward the second coming of Jesus.

Christian Zionism is a modern theological and political movement that embraces the most extreme ideological positions of Zionism, thereby becoming detrimental to a just peace within Palestine and Israel. The Christian Zionist program provides a worldview where the Gospel is identified with the ideology of empire, colonialism and militarism. In its extreme form, it laces an emphasis on apocalyptic events leading to the end of history rather than living Christ’s love and justice today.

What is the Christian Zionist connection with the Holy Land?

Believing that God fights on the side of Israel, Christian Zionists call for the unqualified support for the most extreme political positions related to the Holy Land. Christian Zionist spokes persons have attributed Hurricane Katrina to God’s wrath over our failure to stop Israel from pulling out of Gaza. They consistently oppose any moves towards a solution to the conflict, which would validate the political aspirations of both Palestinians and Israelis.

Who Supports Christian Zionism?

Christian Zionism has significant support within American Protestant fundamentalists, who number between 10 and 20 million. Its reach is broad, by virtue of its favorite themes related to the “End Times” and an Israel-fixated Christian media.  Christian Zionism is both a political movement and a way of interpreting current events. Its focus is on Israel and the Middle East, as much an ideology as a “movement.” Its promoters share many beliefs but are not organized through any one institution.

Throughout history Christians have at times twisted scripture to justify violence: for the Crusades, for Anti-Semitism, and for slavery. Too often the church has been slow to respond to these biblical distortions with disastrous results.

Today Christian Zionists – particularly those with dispensationalist leanings – are at it again. Although their motives are couched in terms of compassion toward the Jewish people based on a literal reading of scripture the political agenda of territorial expansion advocated by Christian Zionists has given rise to injustice against Palestinians and added fuel to the fire of conflict in the Middle East. For some time, individuals, and theologians have spoken out against Christian Zionism. In the past few years, whole church bodies are adding their official voices to the distortions and injustices perpetuated by Christian Zionism.

The GOOD NEWS is that some mainstream churches have spoken out against this inherently anti-Semitic theology. What follows are but a few words from some of those who have:

The Presbyterian Church in the USA at its July 2004, National General Assembly issued a statement on Confronting Christian Zionism: “Christian Zionism promotes a theology that justifies grievous violations of basic rights of people who are also made in the image of God, and is contrary to the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

The United Church of Christ in July 2003, at its National General Synod offered An Alternative Voice to Christian Zionism: “We believe that the tenets of Christian Zionism neither reflect the intention of the teachings of Jesus and the prophets, nor promote peace in the Middle East, and respectfully recommend …an alternative voice to this theology.”

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, in June 2005 at its Chicago Metropolitan Synod issued a Resolution to Encourage the Study of Christian Zionism: “the movement of Christian Zionism based on these biblical interpretations seeks to influence U.S. policy toward Israel in a manner that would arguably facilitate mistreatment of Palestinians, continued occupation of the land, opposition to a two-state solution, and exclusive Israeli control of Jerusalem.”

The United Methodist Church, in June 2005 at its Illinois Conference on Unwrapping the Rapture warned, “Every household should give prayerful consideration as to how God will actually judge us for our silence about and complicity in the crushing of the Palestinian people.”

The Episcopal Church, in November 2004 at its Diocese of Chicago Confronted Christian Zionism: “A partial response to Christian Zionism would be to say that we read Scripture in light of [Jesus’] two great commandments – to love God and our neighbor.”

In the gospel [good news] told in Mark 3: 31-35, the mother of Jesus’ and his brothers arrived at the house where he was teaching.

Standing outside, they sent word to Jesus and called him out. The crowd around Jesus told him, “Your mother, sisters and brothers are outside asking for you.”

Jesus replied, “I am here with my mother, sisters and brothers. For whoever does the will of God is my brother, sister and mother.”-Mark 3: 31-35

“What does God require? He has told you o’man! Be just, be merciful, and walk humbly with your Lord.”
-Micah 6:8

Being just means correct, true, accurate, right and fair.

Merciful is to have, feel and show compassion, that sense of viscerally feeling the pain of another and being moved to help.

Being humble is knowing yourself; the good and the bad, for both cut through every human heart.

1.  http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7f8fafee-e366-11de-8d36-00144feab49a.html


Eileen Fleming,
Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”

Quicksilver Messenger Service – What About Me?

Obama, what are you going to do about me and the million or more like me?

America, my home, what has become of you?  You were once the land of the free, the defender of the oppressed children of the earth…now you have become Shiva, Destroyer of the world.  My heart grows weary from the fight against frustration…I want to let it all just be, however it is to be…but I cannot.   The world must grow, yet you stifle it at every occasion.  My God has told me of a better way, how things could one day be, if only….

If we could only glimpse the better way that some of us have seen, then there would be no resistance to the idea of laying down all the arms in the world in a single motion, a single statement that we all see what the Prophets have tried to pound into our little closed minds.  There is a better way, The One True Religion, The Way of Moses, Mohammed and Jesus, a common path tread by all the Prophets.  Our worth is measured in how we treat the least and the most wretched among us.  There is no room for war when one child suffers without cause; it is a disgrace to the human race.

This song by Quicksilver Messenger Service gives a glimpse of the great question that will decide all of our fates–What will we do about those who are different, the refuse of society, the rejects locked-away in prisons and psych wards?  How many of those of us who are different, those of us who cannot accept things the way they are, are needlessly set-apart from society because no one has the time or the desire to understand our conditions or the moral dilemmas that confound us, or cares to get involved with the freaks of society?  It is far easier to separate the freaks from society, once they have been identified or diagnosed, than it is to show human concern, compassion or generosity of spirit.

We wage war upon ourselves, before we wage it upon the world.  This is why our prisons are filled with mostly minorities and other victims of the class war, why we are a world leader in executions.  America is a very sick society, with a great need for healing.

You poisoned my sweet water.You cut down my green trees.The food you fed my childrenWas the cause of their disease.My world is slowly fallin’ downAnd the airs not good to breathe.And those of us who care enough,We have to do something…….(Chorus)Oh…….oh What you gonna do about me?Oh…….oh What you gonna do about me?Your newspapers,They just put you on.They never tell youThe whole story.They just put yourYoung ideas down.I was wonderin’ could this be the endOf your pride and glory?(Chorus)I work in your factory.I study in your schools.I fill your penitentiaries.And your military too!And I feel the future trembling,As the word is passed around.”If you stand up for what you do believe,Be prepared to be shot down.”(Chorus)And I feel like a strangerIn the land where I was bornAnd I live like an outlaw.An’ I’m always on the run……………………..An Im always getting bustedAnd I got to take a stand……..I believe the revolutionMust be mighty close at hand…………………..(Chorus)I smoke marijuanaBut I cant get behind your wars.And most of what I do believeIs against most of your lawsI’m a fugitive from injusticeBut I’m goin’ to be free.Cause your rules and regulationsThey dont do the thing for me(Chorus)And I feel like a strangerIn the land where I was bornAnd I live just like an outlaw.An’ I’m always on the run.

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Did Jesus Visit India?–the Missing Years

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New Delhi: The spotlight is back on Jesus Christ and his India connection as the world celebrates Christmas on Friday. Some historians believe he spent 17 years of early life – from the age of 13 to 30 – in India learning Buddhism and the Vedas.’There are references that Christ’s family (parents) settled in Nazareth, but the next time he appeared in Nazareth, Jesus was 30. He was said to have been growing in wisdom and stature in the missing years,’ British film producer Kent Walwin said.

Here to receive the Dayawati Modi Award for arts, culture and education in 2009, Walwin’s latest project, ‘Young Jesus: The Missing Years’, will explore early years of the messiah, which are not described in the Gospels.

Text: IANS

Images: Getty Images

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According to Walwin, his movie is ‘on the Apostolic Gospels, which says Jesus was last seen in West Asia when he was 13-14 years old’. The first part of the movie will be based on Gospels and the second part of the movie will be ‘pure conjecture based on archival material’, the filmmaker said. There are several references to the India connection.In 1894, a Russian doctor, Nicolas Notovitch, published a book called the ‘The Unknown Life of Christ’ based on his extensive journeys in Afghanistan, India and Tibet. During one of his journeys, he visited Leh, the capital of Ladakh and spent some time at the Buddhist monastery of Hemis when he broke his leg.

At the monastery, he was shown two large yellowed volumes of a document in Tibetan language, ‘The Life of Saint Issa’. Jesus was referred to as Issa – or the son of god – by the Vedic scholars who tutored him in the sacred texts.

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Notovitch noted down 200 verses from the document at the back of his journal which he kept during his travels. The document later created a storm in the West. Monks at the monastery of Hemis, located 40 km outside Leh atop a hill, corroborate to the legend of Christ in India.’Jesus is said to have visited our land and Kashmir to study Buddhism. He was inspired by the laws and wisdom of Buddha,’ a senior lama of the Hemis monastery said. The head of the Drukpa Buddhist sect, Gwalyang Drukpa, who heads the Hemis monastery, also believes in the legend.

Swami Abhedananda, a Bengali spiritual scholar and seer, had journeyed to the Himalayas to investigate the ‘legend of Christ visiting India’. His travelogue, a book titled ‘Kashmir O Tibetti’, tells of a visit to the Hemis monastery in Ladakh. It includes a Bengali translation of 224 verses of the ‘Issa legend’ which Notovitch copied.

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In 1952, another Russian, Nicholas Roerich, a philosopher and a scientist, visited Hemis and recorded the legend. According to Roerich, ‘Jesus passed his time in several ancient cities of India such as Benares or Varanasi’.’Everyone loved him because Issa dwelt in peace with the Vaishyas and Shudras whom he instructed and helped,’ Roerich said in his account.

Christ’s teachings in the ancient holy cities of Jagannath (Puri), Benares (in Uttar Pradesh) and Rajagriha (in Bihar) earned him the wrath of the Brahmins, forcing him to flee to the Himalayas after six years, historians and authors say. Christ, say archival documents, spent another six years studying Buddhism in the Himalayas.

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German scholar Holger Kersten’s book, ‘Jesus Lived in India’, also tells the story of the early years of Jesus Christ in India. ‘The lad arrives in a region of the Sindh (along the river Indus) in the company of merchants. He settled among the Aryans with the intention of perfecting himself and learning from the laws of the great Buddha. He travelled extensively through the land of the five rivers (Punjab), stayed briefly with the Jains before proceeding to Jagannath,’ Kersten says in his book.

Jesus Christ, Peace be upon him!–(The One True Religion)

On the eve of Christmas

An Open Letter
TO CHRISTIANS WITH LOVE

Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him!) was the last but one prophet of God. Christmas Day, the birth date of Jesus is as important to Muslims as it is to Christians. IMW wishes greetings to the whole mankind on this occasion, especially to Christians and Muslims.

By Dr Javed Jamil

Dear Christian brothers and sisters

Peace be upon you all!

I have been feeling strongly for quite some time that I must address an open letter to all our Christian brothers and sisters. The reasons are multiple.

First, Christians are the biggest majority of the world today. (This is another matter that, according to the statistics only a small percentage of “Christians” do believe in the fundamentals of Christianity.)

Second, the Holy Quran praises Christians for certain of their qualities. It states:

“… and nearest among them in love to the believers wilt thou find those who say, “We are Christians”: because amongst these are men devoted to learning and men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant. And when they listen to the revelation received by the Messenger, thou wilt see their eyes overflowing with tears, for they recognise the truth: they pray: “Our Lord! We believe; write us down among the witnesses. What cause can we have not to believe in God and the truth which has come to us, seeing that we long for our Lord to admit us to the company of the righteous?” (5: 82-84/A)

Third, Christians are mostly educated people, and it is much easier for the more educated to appreciate the beauty of the message of Quran than it is for the less educated.

Before inviting you to study the religion of Islam, I must clarify a few misunderstandings prevalent among Christians regarding Islam and Muslims, which have been aggravated in the wake of the attacks on World Towers in the US. Christians in larger numbers have now started believing that Muslims hate Christians and want to kill them on account of their religion. Here, it would be appropriate to state that:

1.        Islam literally means PEACE and there is nothing in the religion of Islam that allows or exhorts Muslims to kill (–except when attacked or victimised–) people of other faith on the ground of their beliefs.

2.        Those who planned attacks in America were neither themselves Islamic priests nor had any sanction of Islamic authorities;

3.        No Islamic scholar condoned their actions; in fact Islamic scholars were unanimous in condemning the attacks. This is another matter that many of those had hardly any sympathy for a number of the policies of American government. The governments of most Muslim countries supported America in its war against Taliban and Al-Qaeda.

4.        Those who planned these attacks had done so not to express their hatred for Christianity; it was directed against the US hegemony.

Conversely, there have been a number of Christian rulers and armies that killed Muslims in millions. Serbian President Millesowich slaughtered about hundreds of thousands of Bosnian Muslims. Soviet army (mostly Christians) killed about half a million in Afghanistan. Does this mean that Christianity was responsible for killing of Muslims?

Common Grounds
You must understand and realise the fact that out of all those who do not believe in the fundamentals of Christianity it is only Muslims who love all those whom Christians love: God, Mary, Jesus, John the Baptist, Holy Spirit and all other messengers of God including Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Job, Jonas, David and Solomon (Peace be upon them!). Love for them is an inseparable part of Islamic Faith. Not only their belief in Jesus and respect for him and his mother are profound, they also believe Jesus will come again in the world and will unite Muslims and Christians against the Evil forces ruling the world. And most Muslim scholars believe that the time of Second Advent of Christ is not far away.

Quran glorifies Jesus (Peace be upon him!) and Mary (Peace be upon her!)) in no uncertain terms. Muslims regard Jesus as the penultimate Prophet of Islam (the last being Muhammad (Peace be upon him!)) and “Statement (Kalimah), Messenger of God”.  And though it might sound incredible to Christians but the fact is that apart from several stories common in Quran and Bible, there are many events in the lives of Jesus and Mary that are described only in Quran; Bible is silent about them. For example, Quran describes in detail the story of how Virgin Mary went on to take bath and The Holy Spirit announced to her the birth of Jesus as a miracle of God. It also describes events related to the birth of Jesus, difficulties faced by Mary, the help by God, slandering of Mary by the community and Jesus’ miraculous speaking in the cradle to silence his mother’s detractors. Not only this, Quran also describes in detail the birth of Mary herself and her miraculous childhood. It also describes the birth of John the Baptist. These all stories are not present in any of the versions of Gospel. At the same time, Quran does also not fail to rectify certain misconceptions about Jesus’ life that will be discussed later.

This will also be interesting for you to know that Quran coins for Jews and Christians a very respectable term, “Ahl-e-Kitab”, the People of the Book because they have been reading earlier parts (Torah, Psalm sand Gospel) of the Book of God. To affirm their proximity to Muslims, several practical measures have been taken. The foods of Muslims and People of Book have been declared lawful for both. Quran states:

“The food of the People of Book is lawful unto you and yours is lawful unto them.” (5:5)

Taking another major leap towards bonding Muslims with the People of Book, Muslims have been permitted to marry Christian and Jew women; they are not required to change their religion. Quran states:

“(Lawful unto you in marriage) are (not only) chaste women who are believers, but chaste women among the People of the Book, revealed before your time,- when ye give them their due dowers, and desire chastity, not lewdness.” (5: 5)

Muslim rulers have also taken care to judge the internal affairs of Christians (as well as of Jews) on the basis of their own laws.

Quran on Mary and Jesus

Let us first see what Quran states about Mary and Jesus. Quran states:

Behold! a woman of Imran Said: “O my Lord! I do dedicate unto Thee what is in my womb for thy special service: So accept this of me: for Thou hearest and knowest all things. When she was delivered, she said: “O my Lord! Behold! I am delivered Of a female child!” And God knew best what she brought forth “And nowise is the male like the female. I have named her Mary, and I commend her and her offspring to Thy protection from the Evil One, the Rejected.” Right graciously did her Lord accept her: He made her grow in purity and beauty: to the care of Zakariya was she assigned. Every time that he entered (her) chamber to see her, he found her supplied with sustenance. He said: “O Mary! Whence (comes) this to you? She said:

“From God: for God provides sustenance to whom He pleases, without measure. ” (3: 35-37/A)

* Kaf.Ha.Ya `Ain.Sa. (This is) a recital of the mercy of thy Lord to His servant Zakariya. Behold! he cried to his Lord in secret, praying: “O my Lord! Infirm indeed are my bones, and the hair of my head doth glisten with grey: but never am I unblest, O my Lord, in my prayer to thee! “Now I fear( and colleagues) (will do) after me: But my wife is barren: So give me an heir as from Thyself, (one that) will (truly) represent me, and represent the posterity of Jacob; and make him, O my Lord! one  with whom Thou art well-pleased!” (19: 1-6/A)

* While he was standing in prayer in the chamber, the angels called unto him: “God doth give thee glad tidings of Yahya, witnessing the truth of a word from God, and (be Besides) noble, chaste, and a prophet, of the (goodly) company of the righteous.” He said: “O my Lord! How shall I have a son, seeing I am very old, and my wife is barren?” “Thus”, was the answer, “doth God accomplish what He willeth.” He said: “O my Lord! Give me a sign!” “Thy sign,” was the answer, “shall be that thou Shall speak to no man for three days but with signals. Then celebrate the praises of thy Lord again and again, and glorify Him in the evening and in the morning.” (3: 39-41/A)

* (To his son came the command): “O Yahya! take hold of the Book with might”

And We gave him wisdom even as a youth, and pity (for all creatures) as from Us, and purity: he was devout, and kind to his parents, and he was not overbearing or rebellious. So peace on him the day that he was born the day that he dies and the day that he will be raised up To life (again)! (19: 12-15/A)

* Behold! the angels said: “O Mary! God has chosen thee and purified thee-chosen thee above the women of all nations. O Mary! worship: thy Lord devoutly: prostrate thyself, and bow down (in prayer) with those who bow down.”

This is the part of the tidings of the things unseen, which we reveal onto thee

(O Apostle !) by inspiration: Thou wast not with them when they cast lots with arrows, as to which of them should be charged with the care of Mary: nor wast thou with them when they disputed (the point). Behold! the angels said: O Mary! God giveth thee Glad tidings of a Word from Him: his name will be Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, held in honour in this world and the Hereafter and of (the company of) those Nearest of God; He shall speak to the people in childhood and in maturity; and he shall be (of the company) Of the righteous.” (3: 42-46/A)

* Relate in the Book (the story of) Mary, when she withdrew from her family to a place in the east she placed a screen (to screen herself) from them. Then we sent to her our angel and he appeared before her as man in all respects. She said: “I seek refuge from thee to (God) Most Gracious: (come not near) if thou dost fear God.”

He said: “Nay I am only a messenger from thy Lord, (to announce) to thee

The gift of a holy son.” She said: “How shall I have a son, seeing that no man has touched me, and I am not unchaste?” He said: “So (it will be): thy Lord saith, `That is easy for Me and (We wish) to appoint him as a Sign unto men and a mercy from Us’: It is a matter (so) decreed.” (19: 16-21/A)

* So she  conceived him, and she retired with him to a remote place. and the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm-tree: She cried( in her anguish): “Ah! would that I had died before this! Would that I had been a thing forgotten and out of sight!” But  (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree) “Grieve not! for thy Lord hath provided a rivulet beneath thee; and shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree: It will let fall fresh ripe dates upon thee. So eat and drink and cool (thine) eye and if thou dost see any man, say, “I have vowed a fast to (God) Most Gracious, and this day will I enter into no talk with any human being.” At length she brought the (babe) to her people, carrying him (in her arms). They said :”O Mary! Truly an amazing thing hast thou brought! O sister of Aaron! Thy father was not a man of evil, nor thy Mother a woman unchaste!” But she pointed to the babe. They said: “How can we Talk to one who is a child in the cradle?” He said: “I am indeed a servant of God: He hath given me revelation and made me a prophet: and He hath made me blessed wheresoever I be, and hath enjoined on me prayer and charity as long as I live; He hath made me kind to my mother, and not overbearing or miserable; So peace is on me the day I was born, the day that I die, and the day that I shall be raised up To life again”! (19: 22-33/A)

* “And God will teach him the Book and wisdom, the Law and the Gospel, and (appoint him) an apostle to the children of Israel, (with this message): `I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, In that I make for you Out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, And breathe into it, And it becomes a bird By God’s leave: And I heal those Born blind, and lepers, And I quicken the dead By God’s leave; And I declare to you What ye eat, and what ye store In your houses; surely Therein is a Sign for you If ye did believe; (I have come to you), To attest the Law Which was before me. And to make lawful To you part of what was (Before) forbidden to you;

I have come to you With a Sign from your Lord. So fear God, And obey me. It is God Who is my Lord And your Lord: Then worship Him. This is a Way. That is straight.’ (3: 48-51/A)

* Behold! the Disciples said: “O Jesus the son of Mary! Can thy Lord send down to us A tablet set (with viands) From heaven?” Said Jesus: “Fear God, if ye have faith.” They said: “We only wish To eat thereof and satisfy Our hearts, and to know

Thou hast indeed Told us the truth; and That we ourselves may be Witnesses of the miracle.” Said Jesus son of Mary: “O God our Lord! Send us from heaven A Tablet set (with viands), That there may be for us Fro the first and the last of us A solemn festival And a sign from Thee; And provide for our Sustenance, For thou art the best Sustainer (of our needs).” God said:” I will Send down unto you: But if any of you After that resisteth faith, I will punish him With a penalty such As I have not afflicted On anyone among All the peoples.” (5: 114-115/A)

* O ye who believe!  Be ye helpers of God As said Jesus the Son of Mary To the Disciples, “Who will be My helpers to (the work Of) God?” Said the Disciples, “We are God’s helpers!” Then a portion of the children Of Israel believed, and A portion disbelieved: But We gave power To those who believed Against their enemies, and they became The ones that prevailed. (61: 14/A)

* And remember, Jesus, The son of Mary, said: “O children of Israel! I am the apostle of God (Sent) to you, confirming The Law (which came) Before me, and giving Glad tidings of an Apostle To come after me, Whose name shall be Ahmed. (61: 6/A) (Note: Ahmed means `praiseworthy’, the word     nearest to the original Hebrew word, which is now translated as “counsellor” or “comforter”.)

* And  (the unbelievers) Plotted and planned, And God, too, planned And the best of planners Is God. Behold! God said: “O Jesus ! I will take thee And raise thee to Myself And clear thee (of the falsehoods) Of those who blaspheme; I will make those Who follow thee superior To those who reject faith, To the Day of Resurrection: Then shall ye all Return unto me, And I will judge Between you of the matters Where in ye dispute. (3: 54-55/A)

* That they said( in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus The son of Mary, The Apostle of God;” But they killed him not, Nor crucified him, But so it was made To appear to them, And those who differ There in are full of doubts, With no (certain) knowledge, But only a conjecture to follow, For of a surety They killed him not; Nay, God raised him up Unto himself; and God Is exalted in Power, Wise…. (3: 157-158/A)

Differences between Islam and Christianity

As seen above, Qur’an pays great respect to all those who are revered by Christianity. But while Christian priests are admired for certain qualities, Qur’an does not fail to put the matter straight by criticising Christianity in matters that dilute or corrupt the absolute monotheism. Jesus was a man of truth like all other messengers of God but he was a chosen human being, who would guide mankind in a way instructed by God. God is Absolute, Infinite and Perfect. Not even for an iota of time can He, in part or as a whole, become limited or bound by space or time. For whatever aim, God can never be caught by human beings and killed. Jesus was very special; whatever he did and said was in accordance with what God wanted him to say or do. This is another matter that many of his sayings or doings were not correctly recorded or interpreted.  He was not the SON of GOD biologically but metaphorically, because God the Absolute creates and not reproduces. Reproduction is a sign of dependence. It can be proven from Bible that, at several places, Jesus called God as Father of not only himself but also of all humans; he called himself “Son of Man” at several places. Humans were called “sons of God” at several places in both Old and New Testaments. God may be like father in the sense that He is Kind towards His creatures in some of the ways as a father is expected to be kind to his children. But to call Him Father in the Biological sense would deprive Him of His Absoluteness. God is one that encompasses the whole universe (even any other universes that might be existing) and controls it. One who can create anything need not reproduce. Furthermore, Son of God cannot be a role model for sons of men. Jesus was born without a father as a special miracle of God like Adam was born without parents and Eve without mother.

Islam (literally meaning PEACE, and defined as TOTAL SUBMISSION TO GOD) is not a new religion. It is the same religion, which Adam, Abraham, Moses and Jesus (Peace be upon them!) followed, and that hundreds of thousands of other messengers and devotes of God spread all over the world, except that God remodelled the constitution to suit new requirements. The basic philosophy of Belief in One God, Belief in His Messengers and Books, Belief in Hereafter and Belief in GOOD ACTIONS remains the same. But as Quran is for all times to come, it sets guidelines concerning all matters of life. Unlike Christianity that primarily seeks to reform an individual, Islam also gives well-defined principles about family and social life, including social, political, legal and economic systems.

ISLAM THE RELIGION OF PEACE

Islam, as opposed to the propaganda unleashed by the enemies of Islam, which gains credence from the activities of some Muslims who endeavour to use violence as a method of protest against the designs of some Western governments, Islam remains a system committed to and aimed at PEACE.

This is not without significance that Islam literally means Peace, and is defined as submission to God which means that peace cannot be obtained without total submission to the Lord of the universe. Similarly Iman means total satisfaction which again can be obtained only through unshared devotion to God. When Quran calls, “Enter Islam wholeheartedly”, it does not merely invite its adherents to follow the institutionalised system of Islam; it also beckons to them that the real, comprehensive and long lasting peace can be achieved only through total acceptance of the System of God. ….. And the best way to achieve peace, Quran states, is to continuously engage in Jihad, which again has the most comprehensive meaning possible. Jihad is primarily aimed at achieving peace at all levels; it implies revolution: within the body, and outside. Endeavours to achieve peace, the regular (or major) Jihad, must obviously be chiefly through peaceful means; but if peaceful means are not enough to ensure peace, armed (or minor) Jihad must be used, whenever unavoidable, in order to quell aggression, violence and mischief. Jihad is obligatory for every Muslim who must “enjoin good and forbid evil”. But, before telling others to behave, one has to learn behaving oneself. This makes Jihad against “self” as the best form of Jihad. Internal revolution is a sine qua non for external revolution. The external revolution has, however, not to be forgotten; it has to remain the ultimate goal. The combination of Internal and External Revolution alone can lead to real peace.

Thus the message of Quran, the Final Document of Peace, is unequivocal; anything good and desirable has to be promoted, and anything undesirable has to be discouraged. All possible means within the ambit of Islam are to be availed for achieving the goal. This goal however cannot be achieved with perfection unless there is unity of mankind; and mankind cannot unite unless it submits to One God, imitates One Prophet, follows One Book and faces One Direction. This is the real meaning of Wahdat (Unity) that is central to all Islamic systems of affairs. Wahdat of God means, in effect, the Wahdat of mankind. The only way of achieving the real peace is therefore in accepting Wahdat in principle, and in practice. Wahdat of Muslim Community has to be not for confronting the Unbelieving world but for striving for the unity of the whole world, in accordance with the commands of God. Let us pray to the Lord of the Universe for the unity of mankind in total submission to His Law!

APPEAL TO CHRISTIANS

My Christian brothers and sisters-in-humanity! I invite you all to Islam, because you have perhaps a little greater right (on account of your devotion to the penultimate messenger of God and Islam) than any other community to accept and benefit from Islam, the Final Version of God’s religion. By accepting Islam, you will not abandon Jesus but will follow him, because Jesus followed none but ONE GOD. Jesus had never said that none would come after him and he gave a clear indication that “Father” will send a “COMFORTER” to guide mankind “who will glorify me”. Out of all the important historical religious figures, it was only Muhammad (Peace be upon him!) and none else who glorified Jesus. He commanded his followers to believe that Jesus brought the truth from God and generated such a love for Jesus in the minds of Muslims as no other religious community has. It is only due to his teachings that Muslims alone believe in his miraculous birth from only a woman and his ascending to the heaven. If he were not a true messenger of God, he would not have hesitated to point out to the “dubious” nature of the birth of Jesus. If he had not been categorical in his admiration of Jesus, Muslims too could have responded, in the like manner, to the rebukes and slanders some Christians use for Muhammad (Peace be upon him!). Those who speak abusively about Qur’an must know that the pages of Qur’an are full of the stories of Jesus and Mary, apart from the glorification of God the Only Creator and Lord of the Universe. The Holy Spirit brought Qur’an to Muhammad (Peace be upon him!). Along with you, followers of Islam alone are those who love Jesus and Mary (Peace be upon them!). Those who tried to kill Jesus were Jews; and Hindus, Buddhists, Janis and Zoroastrians do not believe in them at all. Islam declares Virgin Mary as PURE and “would-be-leader of women of her time in Paradise” and Jesus as one of the biggest miracles of God. Along with you, we Muslims too are waiting for his Second Advent when he, along with Mahdi, one of the descendants of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him!), will eliminate the forces of evils from the world.

LET US UNITE!

If you accept the religion of God, the penultimate Prophet of which was Jesus and the last one Muhammad (Peace be upon them!), the way will be opened for the triumph of the good over the bad. If you do not accept Islam, even then Christians and Muslims must make every possible effort to unite against injustice, chaos, exploitation, crimes and other evils that pervade society. Christians and Muslims, combined, form almost half of mankind. Hatred between them does not augur well for the world. Mutual understanding and co-operation will lead to a long-lasting peace in the world. Once they unite, they must endeavour to unite all others for the common good of the people of the world. The world today is being ruled not by the system of God but by a system created by the forces of business and globalisation for their own selfish interests. They have commercialised and glorified all those evils that Bible and Quran campaigned against. They have commercialised all forms of addictions, sex and crimes. The result is chaos at every level. Family system is being disintegrated.  Sex and alcohol have become the greatest tormentors of humanity; their high scale and organised commercialisation has brought AIDS as one of the biggest killers of humanity, and exploitation of women and children in a big way. If these evils are not uprooted from society the day is not far when, despite all scientific and technological advancements, human life will become nothing but an unadulterated misery. Mankind already seems to be wandering on the road to ruin. Let us bring Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, Zoroastrians, Sikhs, Jains and all others together on the path of peaceful struggle against all forms of evils!

Let us all pray to God for total peace in the world!

Truly yours

Dr. Javed Jamil

Executive Chairman

International Centre for Applied Islamics

Ulema, Mushaikh declare suicide attacks un-Islamic

Ulema, Mushaikh declare suicide attacks un-Islamic

Minister for Religions Affairs Allama Hamid Saeed Kazmi said that the conference was arranged with an aim to devise a strategy against terrorism. -File Photo

ISLAMABAD: Ulema and Mushaikh belonging to different schools of thought on Thursday unanimously declared suicide attacks in the country un-Islamic and forbidden in Islam.

A large number of Ulema and Mushaikh who attend the ‘Ulema Mushaikh Conference’ arranged by the Ministry of Religious Affair at National Librarydenounced the killing of innocent people in the name of religion.
They, in particular spoke against suicide attacks. Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Minister for Religious Affairs Allama Hamid Saeed Kazmi and Ulema Mushaikh from across the country participated in the conference.

The interior minister also briefed the Ulema and Mushaikh about the security situation as well as measures taken by the government for curbing the menace of terrorism.

The Ulema said that it is clearly stated in the Holy Quran that killing of innocent people is un-Islamic and it could not be justified in any way.

They said ‘The shariah introduced by Hazrat Muhammad (SAW), is complete and adequate for us and we do not need any thing more.’

Speaking on the occasion, Minister for Religions Affairs Allama Hamid Saeed Kazmi said that the conference was arranged with an aim to devise a strategy against terrorism.

He said those who launched attacks upon mosques and educational institutions could never be called Muslims. He said Islam does not allow anyone to kill innocent people or attack mosques.

‘While those laying down their lives in the fight against terrorism are martyrs as they are fighting to save the motherland,’ he said.

The minister said no one in the country could declare suicide attacks as correct. He urged people to join hands with the government against terrorists.

He added that all the demands of the ulema and Mushaikh have been included in the resolution adopted by the conference.

Hamid Kazmi said before launching the military operation in Waziristan all options were used to solve the issue through peaceful way.

‘The whole nation witnessed that the government wanted to solve the issue through dialogue and it only opted to use power when the militants started challenging the writ of the government,’ he said.

He said there would be no dialogue with the militants unless they surrender. He urged the nation to display unity and work for the progress and prosperity of the country.

He said Islam is a religion of peace, harmony and tolerance and dose not allow to spread hatred.

Prominent religious scholar, Syed Charaghuddin Shah said that Ulema believe that the people who are committing terrorists actives have no link with Islam.

He said the conspiracies of enemies to de-stabilize Pakistan would never succeed.

Naib Ameer Ahl-e-Hadith Zabir Muhammad Zaheer said that the enemies of Islam would not succeed to achieve their evil motives. He said that those wanting to de-stabilize the country would themselves be destroyed.

Speaking on the occasion a representative of Hamid Musvi said that the terrorists who are killing innocent people are the enemies of humanity and Islam.

He also quoted the Holy Quran and proved that killing of innocent people was not allowed in Islam. -APP

The Difference Between ISLAM and “Radical Islam”

Ulema’s stand

Dawn Editorial
It is also interesting to note that while both the JUI and JI have separately condemned suicide bombings — with some qualifiers thrown in to water down their statements — neither party has said outright that it is opposed to the Taliban. — Photo by AFP

Not many in Pakistan are in favour of militancy but our society as a whole is undeniably religious and conservative. Unlike the Taliban who wish to impose their views on others, most Pakistanis see religion as a matter of personal belief. But the strong undercurrent of faith that guides individual lives also gives religious leaders a great deal of clout. Believers rarely question their word because it comes from an ostensibly more knowledgeable authority. As such the imam of a mosque is in a position to shape public opinion on the neighbourhood level while religio-political leaders can influence what transpires on the national stage. The question here is: why aren’t the ulema of the country using the considerable means at their disposal to raise a united voice against the Taliban? Is there a possibility that they share some of the causes espoused by the militants?

Keep in mind that Thursday’s ulema conference, which deemed suicide attacks to be un-Islamic and also supported the ongoing military operation, was hosted by the government. It is bound to be seen as a state-sponsored event and as such lacks the authority that may be attached to a congregation of religious leaders who condemn terrorism without official prompting. Also take into account that the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam and Jamaat-i-Islami did not take part in the conference, for reasons that remain unclear. It is also interesting to note that while both the JUI and JI have separately condemned suicide bombings — with some qualifiers thrown in to water down their statements — neither party has said outright that it is opposed to the Taliban.

Why not? Do they have a problem with suicide attacks but not the Taliban? If so, they should have the courage to let the nation know where they stand, and for what reason. The ulema of this country have a role to play in the battle against the Taliban. Every Friday sermon, every statement by a religious leader, carries with it the potential to strengthen public resolve in what is going to be a long fight. Our religious leaders must make their positions known.

The Faithful Brave Certain Danger to Denounce Wahabbi Terrorists

[Here is the answer to this war and a peaceful resolution for all mankind–confront the pretenders who give faith a bad name.]

Taliban under fire at Raiwind gathering

Participants vow to make Pakistan cradle of peace

Monday, November 16, 2009
RAIWIND: Inayatullah Khan sits on a dusty rug and prepares to pray at Pakistan’s biggest religious gathering of 400,000 Muslims in Raiwind, cursing the Taliban for their unholy crusade against humanity.

Khan travelled all the way from South Waziristan to take part in the four-day event, one of the world’s largest Islamic gatherings, in Raiwind on the outskirts of Lahore.A resident of Kanigurram, a former Taliban hub that the military says it has captured during its ongoing five-week offensive in the northwest, Khan, 50, accused the Taliban of straying from the path of God and butchering Muslims.

“They call those who refuse to follow their brand of Islam infidels, not knowing they are inviting the wrath of Allah the Almighty by killing Muslims, which I call an unholy crusade,” Khan said.

A Muslim whose faith is important enough to make an arduous three-day journey and sleep in a tent for four days, Khan invited the Taliban “to join us in spreading Islam’s eternal message of love, affection and peace”. The Thursday-Sunday gathering in Raiwind is being held under tight security due to paced up attacks that have swept the country killing more than 2,500 people in two years.

Contingents of police guard the single-carriage road, lined by eucalyptus trees, that links Raiwind with Lahore.“Despite having to sleep under tents in cold and inhospitable weather, there is no let-up in our resolve to make this country a cradle of peace, a country free of suicide attacks and explosions,” Khan said.

Faced with near-daily attacks, concentrated most heavily in the northwest, many mourn the mounting civilian toll from bombings, often targeting market places, but lace their comments with pervasive anti-American fears.

“Our hearts bleed for the hundreds of innocent people who have lost their lives and our security officials who are being killed by the Taliban,” said Mohammad Farooq, a resident of Tank, where some of the tens of thousands displaced by fighting in South Waziristan have sought shelter.

“The Taliban are enemies of Islam and humanity and advance only an American and Indian agenda – to destabilise Pakistan,” said Farhan Hamad Khan, who had come from Dera Ismail Khan, where many other refugees are also living.

When the prayer leader gave the call to prayer, people rushed towards hundreds of temporary washrooms to make their ablutions.As Muhammad Azhar, an Islamabad-based chartered accountant, waited his turn, he remembered how Pakistan’s ‘icon of democracy’ Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in a gun and suicide attack in 2007.

“Her killers still roam around scot-free,” said the bearded Azhar. “No religion, including Islam, allows the killing of humans. We need to hold gatherings like this one and inculcate in our people a true spirit of Islam,” he added. The prayer leader in his Friday sermon addressed the same issue. “A stern punishment awaits all those who refuse to follow commandments of Allah the Almighty,” he said into a pin-drop silence among the avid masses.

Prayer for Mankind

[Despite the message to Muslims title, this message should apply to all religions.  The message is that brotherhood and sisterhood is universal and that all of us are equal in God’s eyes.]

AN OPEN LETTER TO  MUSLIMS ONLY

S.A.Rehman
Dear Muslim Brothers and Sisters,

God forbid if any one of our near one and dear one is
killed then the killer is evil, a beast and what not
and should get penalty but if one among us kills
anybody then he is not evil and we start lying,
denying or even justifying the killing…. double
standards?

Being Muslims, many of our brothers and sisters are
not working for peace. They are misguided, mistaken
and spreading the virus of hatred and revenge through
telling deliberate lies, disinformation and false
accusations, which is resulting in death and miseries
for number of innocent people living around the world
at the hands of merciless KILLER MUSLIMS and also
bringing bad name to Mohammed (PBUH) who never killed
anyone in his life time.

Instead of teaching about Good & Evil, certain Radical
Muslim Clerics are only “Trading in Religion”. They
teach us about accusing, abusing and killing the
non-Muslims. They try to hypnotize us to Hate and Kill
the non-Muslims and brethren of other sects or be
killed and without using any common sense, we readily
believe in whatever is being said by these Hate
Mongers.  Actually, they are “Agents of Satan” who is
paying them heavily and in return they are cutting at
the very roots of the Ummah. Instead of “Mourning”
most of the Muslims are rejoicing on the brutal
killings of the non-combatant innocent civilians and
“The Murderers” have always been “Our Great Heroes”.

Before it is too late and the Curse Of God falls upon
us, we should use common sense, find out the TRUTH and
must change ourselves  to save Muslims from becoming
the most “Hated, Isolated, Discredited and Suspicious”
people in the world. We must start working for
promoting “Sectarian Harmony and Religious Tolerance”
in the society and should prove to the WORLD through
our deeds that Islam is not a religion of Zero
Tolerance and Mohammed (PBUH) teaches “Love & Peace”
and not Gangsterism, Terrorism, Barbarism, Extremism,
Sectarianism, Cruelty, Inhumanity and “Hatred &
Killing” of the innocent civilians.

Islam is a religion of peace. Islam teaches respect
and love for all even the animals. But many
narrow-minded Muslims have so far failed to learn
anything good from the teachings of Mohammed (PBUH)
who preaches love for the peoples of all religions. We
are far away from the basic principle of Islam i.e.
“Enjoining the people to do Good and forbidding them
from Doing Evil” and thus, possess no quality of the
civilized society. Unfortunately, many of us show Zero
Tolerance towards others and have wrongly learnt few
thing to be called as good Muslims and those are
“hate” the non-Muslims and “Accusing, Abusing and
Cursing” the non-Muslims.  …act of madness?

The killing of others in the name of religion is a
Sin. Can a FATHER ever teach his Children to be the
permanent Enemies of each other?

The time has come for us to stop readily believing in
whatever is being said, read and written by the LIARS
/ Hate Mongers. Unfortunately, some misguided-Muslims
believe that the Holy Koran and Holy Prophet (PBUH)
both have instructed Muslims that the opponents be
KILLED and that they are simply following the orders.
We should use our own common sense and only believe
which is logical, convincing and in the best interest
of the humanity.

Why do we hate others so much, may be they are better
humans then what we are. My feeling is that the
Muslims should unite to discredit and deactivate the
fringe mullahs (Preachers of Hate) who promise a quick
trip to paradise to people who have little and
sacrifice themselves with bombs strapped to their
bodies. If the mullahs (THE LIARS) thought that it
really was a way to paradise they would be strapping
bombs to themselves! Their followers are kept too
ignorant to see this for themselves and enlightened
Muslims should educate them. We must promote
understanding and peace. We are all watched by the
same God and need to help one another, not Hate and
Hurt.

Our contention is that the WORLD should resolve the
conflicts facing the Muslim World to stop the
terrorism. Unfortunately, all the disputes facing the
Muslim World are our self created. The root causes of
all the disputes are based on the Muslim Philosophy of
Hate against the non-Muslims. The Muslim literature,
teachings and preaching are spreading and injecting
this hatred in hearts and minds of the Muslims. Our
intolerant behavior is further proved by the root
causes of all the pending conflicts that we (Muslims)
cannot live side by side in peace with the
non-Muslims. All the disputes facing Muslim World can
be resolved easily, only if we (the Muslims) are able
to condemn the “Philosophy of Hate” created in us by
our past and present elders who have divided the
peoples of the world in the name of “Religion, Cast
and Creed”.

Fellow Muslims! if God is one and he loves mankind, we
should value each others life and strive to protect
each other than thinking that if we kill we shall have
reward. God looks at human beings not as belonging to
different religions, that is why the rain falls to
all, the sun shines to all and we all breathe the air
freely. We are all created or given life in the very
same way- whether Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Jew etc.
Let us learn to love each other sincerely.

The change of heart and mind is possible to achieve if
we keep up our relentless efforts for a violence free
and peaceful world. We need to preach love, kindness
and humanity with extremist devotion and mission. The
mullahs (THE LIARS) and the preachers of HATE must be
excommunicated at every level and we should stop
giving them donations as it is our money which is
being used by them to spread HATRED for killing of the
innocents.

We must also stop dividing the World into Muslim and
non-Muslim blocks. Our political leaders and religious
teachers must offer positive ideas. Without the
ability to imagine a better world, we cannot build
anything together. Tolerance of the beliefs of other
peoples in the world, warmth and friendship across
racial cultures MUST be the objective of all peace
loving people worldwide. What is being offered today
through religion is “Death, Destruction and
Sufferings”.

MY PRAYER FOR PEACE:

Merciful God, please give to peoples of the world, the
required wisdom and determination, to Forgive and
Forget the bitterness of the past and learn to live in
peace like brothers and sisters, by condemning the
divisions and hatreds created in us by our past and
present elders.
(Amen)

Please Read And Circulate this Message For Peace.
Thank you.

S.A.Rehman
Peace Activist
PAKISTAN

Wahabis are the problem with Islam

whether there is true islam or there is no true islam, this is another thing,

the matter that affects people is that that when some one jumps in your privacy and tells you that “please be ready to be killed because you are infidels” this is real problem,

whether people follow truth or not, this is their own business,
but no one has authority to come with sword in hand to kill them because they are infidels,
this is real problem,

and, wahabis do exactly that,
they pose themselves as the owner of the world, and owner of the whole people of the world,
this is real problem,

if, God has granted people with freedom,
who are wahabis to come, announce and kill them in the name of the same God ?
this is real problem.

Deoband is a town a hundred miles north of Delhi where a madrasa (religious school) was established there in May 30, 1866.

Just as Sikhs originated from Hinduism, but are not Hindus,
as same wahabis originated from sunnis, but are not sunnis,

The fundamentalist Deoband Dar-ul-Uloom brand of Islam inspired the Taliban,
The fundamentalist Deoband Dar-ul-Uloom brand of Islam inspired the Terrorism,

Most of the Taliban leadership attended Deobandi-Darul Uloom influenced seminaries in Pakistan,

Although the majority of the Islamic population is Sunni in Afghanistan and Pakistan, but the theologians who have pushed Pakistan towards Islamic Radicalism for decades, as well as the ones who were the founders of the Taliban, espoused Wahabi Darul Uloom based rhetoric and ideals,

Khaled Ahmed in his article ‘The Grand Deobandi Consensus’ published in The Friday Times of Pakistan, dated 4-10, February 2000 said:

‘The civil war in Afghanistan and the jehad in Kashmir have gradually veered to a Deobandi consensus.’ He also maintained that the Taliban of Mulla Umar, which enjoys popularity in Pakistan, was trained in the traditional Deobandi jurisprudence and that Harkat-ul- Ansar (Movement of Islamic warriors), a terrorist outfit in Kashmir is of Deobandi persuasion.

He also quoted John K. Cooley in his book Unholy Wars that ‘Mullah Umar and Osma bin Laden first met in 1989 in a Deobandi mosque, Banuri Masjid, in Karachi.”

Taliban Leadership educated in Pakistani Madrassas: In YEAR 1998:

Governor of Jalalabad and his Deputy is a student of Jami’ah Haqqaniah, Akora Khattak Peshawar,
Judge of Jalalabad High Court and its Qazi were both educated in another Madrassah in Peshawar,
Taliban UN Representative – Maulana Abdul Hakim is a student of Binori Town, Karachi,
Taliban ambassador in Islamabad, Muhammad M’asoom Afghani is a student of Dar-ul-Uloom Karachi,
Afghan Envoy in Karachi acquired religious education from Jamiah Hammadiah,

amazingly, those, who sing song of talibanization…talibanization…talibanization…twenty four hours a day, never ever said that terrorists production centers darul ulooms in karachi should immediately be shut down.

Israeli blockade risks Gaza cardiac patients’ lives

Medics: Israeli blockade risks Gaza cardiac patients’ lives

Ma’an News

7gaza-57135.jpg
September 7, 2009

Gaza – Ma’an – The lives of hundreds of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip will be put at risk if Israel does not allow the delivery of a spare part needed to repair an instrument used to treat cardiac patients, medical officials said on Monday.

The only one of its kind in the Gaza Strip, the device at the European Hospital in Khan Younis is required for cardiac catheterization, the insertion of a catheter into a chamber or vessel of the heart.

“One of the electronic panels of the cardiac catheterization machine has been out of order since the beginning of September. This is dangerous for hundreds of cardiac patients who are awaiting procedures,” said Dr Muhammad Habib, the director of the catheterization department at the European Hospital.

According to Habib, shipment of the new electronic panel from The Netherlands, where the machine was manufactured, will take more than a month.

He said that Israel has placed this spare part on the list of goods banned from the Gaza Strip as part of its ongoing blockade. He said the hospital has been waiting another spare part more than a month, and it has not arrived yet.

“We are in a real trouble as more than 400 patients are on the waiting list for cardiac catheterization. We can’t send them to Egypt or anywhere because of the siege, and many of them will be facing a life-threatening situation,” Dr Habib explained.

Israel imposed a strict blockade of the Gaza Strip in June 2007, trapping the territory’s 1.5 million residents inside and severely curtailing the quantity and types of goods allowed into the territory.

:: Article nr. 57691 sent on 07-sep-2009 18:59 ECT


Beyond Afghanistan: Dr. Martin Luthor King, “Time to Break Silence”

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more about “A Time to Break Silence: By Rev. Mart…“, posted with vodpod

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “A Time to Break Silence: By Rev. Mart…“, posted with vodpod

[Dr. King’s speech about breaking the silence about his country’s crimes in Vietnam would be just as timely if given today.  Afghanistan is our testimony to the world and to ourselves about the great crimes that drive our nation to expand its latest war, far beyond anything sold to the people, thrusting our criminal assault deep into the loins of Central Asia.  Rape on an international scale.  After all, isn’t that what we are doing to both friend and foe in the Middle East and beyond, to brutally take all that juicy gas and oil?  Open your eyes to the sordid details of our leaders’ choices and see the blood they have shed staining our own hands , then open your mouths to share the shocking truth you have learned!]

Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence
By Rev. Martin Luther King
4 April 1967
Speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4, 1967, at a meeting of Clergy and Laity Concerned at Riverside Church in New York City

I come to this magnificent house of worship tonight because my conscience leaves me no other choice. I join with you in this meeting because I am in deepest agreement with the aims and work of the organization which has brought us together: Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam. The recent statement of your executive committee are the sentiments of my own heart and I found myself in full accord when I read its opening lines: “A time comes when silence is betrayal.” That time has come for us in relation to Vietnam.

The truth of these words is beyond doubt but the mission to which they call us is a most difficult one. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government’s policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one’s own bosom and in the surrounding world. Moreover when the issues at hand seem as perplexed as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict we are always on the verge of being mesmerized by uncertainty; but we must move on.

Some of us who have already begun to break the silence of the night have found that the calling to speak is often a vocation of agony, but we must speak. We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak. And we must rejoice as well, for surely this is the first time in our nation’s history that a significant number of its religious leaders have chosen to move beyond the prophesying of smooth patriotism to the high grounds of a firm dissent based upon the mandates of conscience and the reading of history. Perhaps a new spirit is rising among us. If it is, let us trace its movement well and pray that our own inner being may be sensitive to its guidance, for we are deeply in need of a new way beyond the darkness that seems so close around us.

Over the past two years, as I have moved to break the betrayal of my own silences and to speak from the burnings of my own heart, as I have called for radical departures from the destruction of Vietnam, many persons have questioned me about the wisdom of my path. At the heart of their concerns this query has often loomed large and loud: Why are you speaking about war, Dr. King? Why are you joining the voices of dissent? Peace and civil rights don’t mix, they say. Aren’t you hurting the cause of your people, they ask? And when I hear them, though I often understand the source of their concern, I am nevertheless greatly saddened, for such questions mean that the inquirers have not really known me, my commitment or my calling. Indeed, their questions suggest that they do not know the world in which they live.

In the light of such tragic misunderstandings, I deem it of signal importance to try to state clearly, and I trust concisely, why I believe that the path from Dexter Avenue Baptist Church — the church in Montgomery, Alabama, where I began my pastorate — leads clearly to this sanctuary tonight.

I come to this platform tonight to make a passionate plea to my beloved nation. This speech is not addressed to Hanoi or to the National Liberation Front. It is not addressed to China or to Russia.

Nor is it an attempt to overlook the ambiguity of the total situation and the need for a collective solution to the tragedy of Vietnam. Neither is it an attempt to make North Vietnam or the National Liberation Front paragons of virtue, nor to overlook the role they can play in a successful resolution of the problem. While they both may have justifiable reason to be suspicious of the good faith of the United States, life and history give eloquent testimony to the fact that conflicts are never resolved without trustful give and take on both sides.

Tonight, however, I wish not to speak with Hanoi and the NLF, but rather to my fellow Americans, who, with me, bear the greatest responsibility in ending a conflict that has exacted a heavy price on both continents.

The Importance of Vietnam
Since I am a preacher by trade, I suppose it is not surprising that I have seven major reasons for bringing Vietnam into the field of my moral vision. There is at the outset a very obvious and almost facile connection between the war in Vietnam and the struggle I, and others, have been waging in America. A few years ago there was a shining moment in that struggle. It seemed as if there was a real promise of hope for the poor — both black and white — through the poverty program. There were experiments, hopes, new beginnings. Then came the buildup in Vietnam and I watched the program broken and eviscerated as if it were some idle political plaything of a society gone mad on war, and I knew that America would never invest the necessary funds or energies in rehabilitation of its poor so long as adventures like Vietnam continued to draw men and skills and money like some demonic destructive suction tube. So I was increasingly compelled to see the war as an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such.

Perhaps the more tragic recognition of reality took place when it became clear to me that the war was doing far more than devastating the hopes of the poor at home. It was sending their sons and their brothers and their husbands to fight and to die in extraordinarily high proportions relative to the rest of the population. We were taking the black young men who had been crippled by our society and sending them eight thousand miles away to guarantee liberties in Southeast Asia which they had not found in southwest Georgia and East Harlem. So we have been repeatedly faced with the cruel irony of watching Negro and white boys on TV screens as they kill and die together for a nation that has been unable to seat them together in the same schools. So we watch them in brutal solidarity burning the huts of a poor village, but we realize that they would never live on the same block in Detroit. I could not be silent in the face of such cruel manipulation of the poor.

My third reason moves to an even deeper level of awareness, for it grows out of my experience in the ghettoes of the North over the last three years — especially the last three summers. As I have walked among the desperate, rejected and angry young men I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they asked — and rightly so — what about Vietnam? They asked if our own nation wasn’t using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today — my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.

For those who ask the question, “Aren’t you a civil rights leader?” and thereby mean to exclude me from the movement for peace, I have this further answer. In 1957 when a group of us formed the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, we chose as our motto: “To save the soul of America.” We were convinced that we could not limit our vision to certain rights for black people, but instead affirmed the conviction that America would never be free or saved from itself unless the descendants of its slaves were loosed completely from the shackles they still wear. In a way we were agreeing with Langston Hughes, that black bard of Harlem, who had written earlier:

O, yes,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath–
America will be!

Now, it should be incandescently clear that no one who has any concern for the integrity and life of America today can ignore the present war. If America’s soul becomes totally poisoned, part of the autopsy must read Vietnam. It can never be saved so long as it destroys the deepest hopes of men the world over. So it is that those of us who are yet determined that America will be are led down the path of protest and dissent, working for the health of our land.

As if the weight of such a commitment to the life and health of America were not enough, another burden of responsibility was placed upon me in 1964; and I cannot forget that the Nobel Prize for Peace was also a commission — a commission to work harder than I had ever worked before for “the brotherhood of man.” This is a calling that takes me beyond national allegiances, but even if it were not present I would yet have to live with the meaning of my commitment to the ministry of Jesus Christ. To me the relationship of this ministry to the making of peace is so obvious that I sometimes marvel at those who ask me why I am speaking against the war. Could it be that they do not know that the good news was meant for all men — for Communist and capitalist, for their children and ours, for black and for white, for revolutionary and conservative? Have they forgotten that my ministry is in obedience to the one who loved his enemies so fully that he died for them? What then can I say to the “Vietcong” or to Castro or to Mao as a faithful minister of this one? Can I threaten them with death or must I not share with them my life?

Finally, as I try to delineate for you and for myself the road that leads from Montgomery to this place I would have offered all that was most valid if I simply said that I must be true to my conviction that I share with all men the calling to be a son of the living God. Beyond the calling of race or nation or creed is this vocation of sonship and brotherhood, and because I believe that the Father is deeply concerned especially for his suffering and helpless and outcast children, I come tonight to speak for them.

This I believe to be the privilege and the burden of all of us who deem ourselves bound by allegiances and loyalties which are broader and deeper than nationalism and which go beyond our nation’s self-defined goals and positions. We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy, for no document from human hands can make these humans any less our brothers.

Strange Liberators
And as I ponder the madness of Vietnam and search within myself for ways to understand and respond to compassion my mind goes constantly to the people of that peninsula. I speak now not of the soldiers of each side, not of the junta in Saigon, but simply of the people who have been living under the curse of war for almost three continuous decades now. I think of them too because it is clear to me that there will be no meaningful solution there until some attempt is made to know them and hear their broken cries.

They must see Americans as strange liberators. The Vietnamese people proclaimed their own independence in 1945 after a combined French and Japanese occupation, and before the Communist revolution in China. They were led by Ho Chi Minh. Even though they quoted the American Declaration of Independence in their own document of freedom, we refused to recognize them. Instead, we decided to support France in its reconquest of her former colony.

Our government felt then that the Vietnamese people were not “ready” for independence, and we again fell victim to the deadly Western arrogance that has poisoned the international atmosphere for so long. With that tragic decision we rejected a revolutionary government seeking self-determination, and a government that had been established not by China (for whom the Vietnamese have no great love) but by clearly indigenous forces that included some Communists. For the peasants this new government meant real land reform, one of the most important needs in their lives.

For nine years following 1945 we denied the people of Vietnam the right of independence. For nine years we vigorously supported the French in their abortive effort to recolonize Vietnam.

Before the end of the war we were meeting eighty percent of the French war costs. Even before the French were defeated at Dien Bien Phu, they began to despair of the reckless action, but we did not. We encouraged them with our huge financial and military supplies to continue the war even after they had lost the will. Soon we would be paying almost the full costs of this tragic attempt at recolonization.

After the French were defeated it looked as if independence and land reform would come again through the Geneva agreements. But instead there came the United States, determined that Ho should not unify the temporarily divided nation, and the peasants watched again as we supported one of the most vicious modern dictators — our chosen man, Premier Diem. The peasants watched and cringed as Diem ruthlessly routed out all opposition, supported their extortionist landlords and refused even to discuss reunification with the north. The peasants watched as all this was presided over by U.S. influence and then by increasing numbers of U.S. troops who came to help quell the insurgency that Diem’s methods had aroused. When Diem was overthrown they may have been happy, but the long line of military dictatorships seemed to offer no real change — especially in terms of their need for land and peace.

The only change came from America as we increased our troop commitments in support of governments which were singularly corrupt, inept and without popular support. All the while the people read our leaflets and received regular promises of peace and democracy — and land reform. Now they languish under our bombs and consider us — not their fellow Vietnamese –the real enemy. They move sadly and apathetically as we herd them off the land of their fathers into concentration camps where minimal social needs are rarely met. They know they must move or be destroyed by our bombs. So they go — primarily women and children and the aged.

They watch as we poison their water, as we kill a million acres of their crops. They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals, with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one “Vietcong”-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them — mostly children. They wander into the towns and see thousands of the children, homeless, without clothes, running in packs on the streets like animals. They see the children, degraded by our soldiers as they beg for food. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers.

What do the peasants think as we ally ourselves with the landlords and as we refuse to put any action into our many words concerning land reform? What do they think as we test our latest weapons on them, just as the Germans tested out new medicine and new tortures in the concentration camps of Europe? Where are the roots of the independent Vietnam we claim to be building? Is it among these voiceless ones?

We have destroyed their two most cherished institutions: the family and the village. We have destroyed their land and their crops. We have cooperated in the crushing of the nation’s only non-Communist revolutionary political force — the unified Buddhist church. We have supported the enemies of the peasants of Saigon. We have corrupted their women and children and killed their men. What liberators?

Now there is little left to build on — save bitterness. Soon the only solid physical foundations remaining will be found at our military bases and in the concrete of the concentration camps we call fortified hamlets. The peasants may well wonder if we plan to build our new Vietnam on such grounds as these? Could we blame them for such thoughts? We must speak for them and raise the questions they cannot raise. These too are our brothers.

Perhaps the more difficult but no less necessary task is to speak for those who have been designated as our enemies. What of the National Liberation Front — that strangely anonymous group we call VC or Communists? What must they think of us in America when they realize that we permitted the repression and cruelty of Diem which helped to bring them into being as a resistance group in the south? What do they think of our condoning the violence which led to their own taking up of arms? How can they believe in our integrity when now we speak of “aggression from the north” as if there were nothing more essential to the war? How can they trust us when now we charge them with violence after the murderous reign of Diem and charge them with violence while we pour every new weapon of death into their land? Surely we must understand their feelings even if we do not condone their actions. Surely we must see that the men we supported pressed them to their violence. Surely we must see that our own computerized plans of destruction simply dwarf their greatest acts.

How do they judge us when our officials know that their membership is less than twenty-five percent Communist and yet insist on giving them the blanket name? What must they be thinking when they know that we are aware of their control of major sections of Vietnam and yet we appear ready to allow national elections in which this highly organized political parallel government will have no part? They ask how we can speak of free elections when the Saigon press is censored and controlled by the military junta. And they are surely right to wonder what kind of new government we plan to help form without them — the only party in real touch with the peasants. They question our political goals and they deny the reality of a peace settlement from which they will be excluded. Their questions are frighteningly relevant. Is our nation planning to build on political myth again and then shore it up with the power of new violence?

Here is the true meaning and value of compassion and nonviolence when it helps us to see the enemy’s point of view, to hear his questions, to know his assessment of ourselves. For from his view we may indeed see the basic weaknesses of our own condition, and if we are mature, we may learn and grow and profit from the wisdom of the brothers who are called the opposition.

So, too, with Hanoi. In the north, where our bombs now pummel the land, and our mines endanger the waterways, we are met by a deep but understandable mistrust. To speak for them is to explain this lack of confidence in Western words, and especially their distrust of American intentions now. In Hanoi are the men who led the nation to independence against the Japanese and the French, the men who sought membership in the French commonwealth and were betrayed by the weakness of Paris and the willfulness of the colonial armies. It was they who led a second struggle against French domination at tremendous costs, and then were persuaded to give up the land they controlled between the thirteenth and seventeenth parallel as a temporary measure at Geneva. After 1954 they watched us conspire with Diem to prevent elections which would have surely brought Ho Chi Minh to power over a united Vietnam, and they realized they had been betrayed again.

When we ask why they do not leap to negotiate, these things must be remembered. Also it must be clear that the leaders of Hanoi considered the presence of American troops in support of the Diem regime to have been the initial military breach of the Geneva agreements concerning foreign troops, and they remind us that they did not begin to send in any large number of supplies or men until American forces had moved into the tens of thousands.

Hanoi remembers how our leaders refused to tell us the truth about the earlier North Vietnamese overtures for peace, how the president claimed that none existed when they had clearly been made. Ho Chi Minh has watched as America has spoken of peace and built up its forces, and now he has surely heard of the increasing international rumors of American plans for an invasion of the north. He knows the bombing and shelling and mining we are doing are part of traditional pre-invasion strategy. Perhaps only his sense of humor and of irony can save him when he hears the most powerful nation of the world speaking of aggression as it drops thousands of bombs on a poor weak nation more than eight thousand miles away from its shores.

At this point I should make it clear that while I have tried in these last few minutes to give a voice to the voiceless on Vietnam and to understand the arguments of those who are called enemy, I am as deeply concerned about our troops there as anything else. For it occurs to me that what we are submitting them to in Vietnam is not simply the brutalizing process that goes on in any war where armies face each other and seek to destroy. We are adding cynicism to the process of death, for they must know after a short period there that none of the things we claim to be fighting for are really involved. Before long they must know that their government has sent them into a struggle among Vietnamese, and the more sophisticated surely realize that we are on the side of the wealthy and the secure while we create hell for the poor.

This Madness Must Cease
Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now. I speak as a child of God and brother to the suffering poor of Vietnam. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home and death and corruption in Vietnam. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours.

This is the message of the great Buddhist leaders of Vietnam. Recently one of them wrote these words:

“Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the heart of the Vietnamese and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. The Americans are forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that the Americans, who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of America will never again be the image of revolution, freedom and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism.”

If we continue, there will be no doubt in my mind and in the mind of the world that we have no honorable intentions in Vietnam. It will become clear that our minimal expectation is to occupy it as an American colony and men will not refrain from thinking that our maximum hope is to goad China into a war so that we may bomb her nuclear installations. If we do not stop our war against the people of Vietnam immediately the world will be left with no other alternative than to see this as some horribly clumsy and deadly game we have decided to play.

The world now demands a maturity of America that we may not be able to achieve. It demands that we admit that we have been wrong from the beginning of our adventure in Vietnam, that we have been detrimental to the life of the Vietnamese people. The situation is one in which we must be ready to turn sharply from our present ways.

In order to atone for our sins and errors in Vietnam, we should take the initiative in bringing a halt to this tragic war. I would like to suggest five concrete things that our government should do immediately to begin the long and difficult process of extricating ourselves from this nightmarish conflict:

End all bombing in North and South Vietnam.
Declare a unilateral cease-fire in the hope that such action will create the atmosphere for negotiation.
Take immediate steps to prevent other battlegrounds in Southeast Asia by curtailing our military buildup in Thailand and our interference in Laos.
Realistically accept the fact that the National Liberation Front has substantial support in South Vietnam and must thereby play a role in any meaningful negotiations and in any future Vietnam government.
Set a date that we will remove all foreign troops from Vietnam in accordance with the 1954 Geneva agreement.

Part of our ongoing commitment might well express itself in an offer to grant asylum to any Vietnamese who fears for his life under a new regime which included the Liberation Front. Then we must make what reparations we can for the damage we have done. We most provide the medical aid that is badly needed, making it available in this country if necessary.

Protesting The War
Meanwhile we in the churches and synagogues have a continuing task while we urge our government to disengage itself from a disgraceful commitment. We must continue to raise our voices if our nation persists in its perverse ways in Vietnam. We must be prepared to match actions with words by seeking out every creative means of protest possible.

As we counsel young men concerning military service we must clarify for them our nation’s role in Vietnam and challenge them with the alternative of conscientious objection. I am pleased to say that this is the path now being chosen by more than seventy students at my own alma mater, Morehouse College, and I recommend it to all who find the American course in Vietnam a dishonorable and unjust one. Moreover I would encourage all ministers of draft age to give up their ministerial exemptions and seek status as conscientious objectors. These are the times for real choices and not false ones. We are at the moment when our lives must be placed on the line if our nation is to survive its own folly. Every man of humane convictions must decide on the protest that best suits his convictions, but we must all protest.

There is something seductively tempting about stopping there and sending us all off on what in some circles has become a popular crusade against the war in Vietnam. I say we must enter the struggle, but I wish to go on now to say something even more disturbing. The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit, and if we ignore this sobering reality we will find ourselves organizing clergy- and laymen-concerned committees for the next generation. They will be concerned about Guatemala and Peru. They will be concerned about Thailand and Cambodia. They will be concerned about Mozambique and South Africa. We will be marching for these and a dozen other names and attending rallies without end unless there is a significant and profound change in American life and policy. Such thoughts take us beyond Vietnam, but not beyond our calling as sons of the living God.

In 1957 a sensitive American official overseas said that it seemed to him that our nation was on the wrong side of a world revolution. During the past ten years we have seen emerge a pattern of suppression which now has justified the presence of U.S. military “advisors” in Venezuela. This need to maintain social stability for our investments accounts for the counter-revolutionary action of American forces in Guatemala. It tells why American helicopters are being used against guerrillas in Colombia and why American napalm and green beret forces have already been active against rebels in Peru. It is with such activity in mind that the words of the late John F. Kennedy come back to haunt us. Five years ago he said, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”

Increasingly, by choice or by accident, this is the role our nation has taken — the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investment.

I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a “thing-oriented” society to a “person-oriented” society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.

A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our past and present policies. n the one hand we are called to play the good Samaritan on life’s roadside; but that will be only an initial act. One day we must come to see that the whole Jericho road must be transformed so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life’s highway. True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring. A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries, and say: “This is not just.” It will look at our alliance with the landed gentry of Latin America and say: “This is not just.” The Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and nothing to learn from them is not just. A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: “This way of settling differences is not just.” This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation’s homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into veins of people normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.

America, the richest and most powerful nation in the world, can well lead the way in this revolution of values. There is nothing, except a tragic death wish, to prevent us from reordering our priorities, so that the pursuit of peace will take precedence over the pursuit of war. There is nothing to keep us from molding a recalcitrant status quo with bruised hands until we have fashioned it into a brotherhood.

This kind of positive revolution of values is our best defense against communism. War is not the answer. Communism will never be defeated by the use of atomic bombs or nuclear weapons. Let us not join those who shout war and through their misguided passions urge the United States to relinquish its participation in the United Nations. These are days which demand wise restraint and calm reasonableness. We must not call everyone a Communist or an appeaser who advocates the seating of Red China in the United Nations and who recognizes that hate and hysteria are not the final answers to the problem of these turbulent days. We must not engage in a negative anti-communism, but rather in a positive thrust for democracy, realizing that our greatest defense against communism is to take offensive action in behalf of justice. We must with positive action seek to remove thosse conditions of poverty, insecurity and injustice which are the fertile soil in which the seed of communism grows and develops.

The People Are Important
These are revolutionary times. All over the globe men are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression and out of the wombs of a frail world new systems of justice and equality are being born. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are rising up as never before. “The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light.” We in the West must support these revolutions. It is a sad fact that, because of comfort, complacency, a morbid fear of communism, and our proneness to adjust to injustice, the Western nations that initiated so much of the revolutionary spirit of the modern world have now become the arch anti-revolutionaries. This has driven many to feel that only Marxism has the revolutionary spirit. Therefore, communism is a judgement against our failure to make democracy real and follow through on the revolutions we initiated. Our only hope today lies in our ability to recapture the revolutionary spirit and go out into a sometimes hostile world declaring eternal hostility to poverty, racism, and militarism. With this powerful commitment we shall boldly challenge the status quo and unjust mores and thereby speed the day when “every valley shall be exalted, and every moutain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight and the rough places plain.”

A genuine revolution of values means in the final analysis that our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Every nation must now develop an overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole in order to preserve the best in their individual societies.

This call for a world-wide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one’s tribe, race, class and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing and unconditional love for all men. This oft misunderstood and misinterpreted concept — so readily dismissed by the Nietzsches of the world as a weak and cowardly force — has now become an absolute necessity for the survival of man. When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response. I am speaking of that force which all of the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality. This Hindu-Moslem-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the first epistle of Saint John:

Let us love one another; for love is God and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. If we love one another God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Let us hope that this spirit will become the order of the day. We can no longer afford to worship the god of hate or bow before the altar of retaliation. The oceans of history are made turbulent by the ever-rising tides of hate. History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations and individuals that pursued this self-defeating path of hate. As Arnold Toynbee says : “Love is the ultimate force that makes for the saving choice of life and good against the damning choice of death and evil. Therefore the first hope in our inventory must be the hope that love is going to have the last word.”

We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity. The “tide in the affairs of men” does not remain at the flood; it ebbs. We may cry out deperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is deaf to every plea and rushes on. Over the bleached bones and jumbled residue of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words: “Too late.” There is an invisible book of life that faithfully records our vigilance or our neglect. “The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on…” We still have a choice today; nonviolent coexistence or violent co-annihilation.

We must move past indecision to action. We must find new ways to speak for peace in Vietnam and justice throughout the developing world — a world that borders on our doors. If we do not act we shall surely be dragged down the long dark and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.

Now let us begin. Now let us rededicate ourselves to the long and bitter — but beautiful — struggle for a new world. This is the callling of the sons of God, and our brothers wait eagerly for our response. Shall we say the odds are too great? Shall we tell them the struggle is too hard? Will our message be that the forces of American life militate against their arrival as full men, and we send our deepest regrets? Or will there be another message, of longing, of hope, of solidarity with their yearnings, of commitment to their cause, whatever the cost? The choice is ours, and though we might prefer it otherwise we must choose in this crucial moment of human history.

As that noble bard of yesterday, James Russell Lowell, eloquently stated:

Once to every man and nation
Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth and falsehood,
For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, God’s new Messiah,
Off’ring each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever
Twixt that darkness and that light.

Though the cause of evil prosper,
Yet ’tis truth alone is strong;
Though her portion be the scaffold,
And upon the throne be wrong:
Yet that scaffold sways the future,
And behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow
Keeping watch above his own.

Overthrowing the Kingdom of God

Thomas Jefferson:

“Nothing can be more exactly and seriously true than what is there stated

[the very words only of Jesus];

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that but a short time elapsed after the death of the great reformer of the Jewish religion,

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before his principles were departed from by those who professed to be his special servants,

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and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind, and aggrandising their oppressors in Church and State;

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that the purest system of morals ever before preached to man, has been adulterated and sophisticated by artificial constructions,

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into a mere contrivance to filch wealth and power to themselves;

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that rational men not being able to swallow their impious heresies, in order to force them down their throats, they raise the hue and cry of infidelity,

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while themselves are the greatest obstacles to the advancement of the real doctrines of Jesus, and do in fact constitute the real Anti-Christ.”

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In the name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful (Guest Editorial)


[We all should treat the following as the first step toward invoking all the names of the One God (Peace Be Unto Him), inviting Him to heal the wounded hearts and sickened minds of all humankind.

In the name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful

Dear Brethren in the faith of the One Lord, our King the Almighty Allah (Eloah), the Incomparably Great, Most Holy, Most High I greet you with Peace.
As’Salaamu Alaikum (Shalom) In the name of His Highest who is the sole Owner of all the Most Holy and Most Beautiful Names, Attributes/ Titles our Lord the Creator.

I wish this letter, and open invitation receives you in the best of health.
It is our common goal in faith to uphold all that is good and forbid all that is evil, this letter comes as a request for your cooperation in the common goals we share.
As religious leaders, as dedicated believers and scholars of the Holy Scriptures from our Lord, as His agents on Earth it is our duty to protect, assist and guide mankind to that which is good.

The world we live in today is filled with corruption, oppression and an evil that is flourishing amongst our people. It is our duty as religious leaders to uphold and encourage the common good of mankind. The problems we face in our world today is with substance abuse such as drugs, alcohol and a variety of un-Khosher (Haraam) things, unlawful sexual relations before marriage, sodomy and racial discrimination amongst our people. Our Creator has created only one race in mankind and that is the Human race, He divided us into many beautiful nations so we may know each other. Having said this I would like for us to work towards a common good and fight against all evils in unity as we await the coming of the Messiah, this, a token of our preparation for the End.

For the Almighty Allah Says in the Holy Quran: Q2:62 “Those who believe (The Muslims) and those who are Jews and Christians, and Sabaeans whoever believeth in Allah and the Last Day and doeth right surely their reward is with their Lord, and there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.”, Q2:63 “And remember O Children of Israel, when We (Allah) have made a covenant with you and caused the Mount to tower above you, (saying): Hold fast that which We (Allah) have given you, and remember that which is therein, that ye may ward off evil.”

The Almighty Allah says in the Holy Quran: Q5:44 “Lo! We did reveal the Torah, wherein there is guidance and a light, by which the Prophets who surrender to His will judge (rule) the Jews, and the rabbis and the priests (judged) by such of Allah’s Scripture as they were bidden to observe, and thereunto were they witness. So fear not mankind, but Fear Me. And batter not My revelations for a little gain. Whose judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed: such are disbelievers. Q5:45 “Whoso judge not by that which Allah hath revealed: such as wrongdoers.” Q5:46 “We bestowed on him (Eesa / Jesus) the Gospel wherein is guidance and a light, confirming that which was revealed before it the Torah a guidance and an admonition unto those who ward off evil.” Q5:47 “Let the people of the Gospel judge by that which Allah hath revealed therein. Whoso judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed; such are evil livers.” Q5:48 “And unto thee (Muslims) We (Allah) revealed the Scripture with the truth, confirming whatever Scripture was before it, and a watcher over it. So judge between them by that which Allah hath revealed, and follow not their desires away from the truth which hath come unto thee. For each We (Allah) have appointed a Shariah (divine law) and a traced out way. Had Allah willed He could have made you one community. But that He may try you by that which He hath given you. (He hath made you as ye are) So vie one with another in good works. Unto Allah ye will return, and He will then inform you of that wherein ye differ.”

O People of the Scripture lend me an observant ear, we find in our midst today the evil doers promoting a law called democracy, for all they do and command by is said in the name of democracy and not in the Name of our Lord, in their evil system of law religion have no right to judge, in their system the religious head have been removed from the political scene. In this system called democracy the evils of corruption, sodomy, un-lawful sexual relations, theft and usury thrive as it feeds of the oppressed and innocent people. O people of the Scripture let us unite in the common good to ward of evil and stand united against all evils such as sodomism, oppression, corruption etc… and take back the Laws (Shariah) of Scripture, let us restore our family values and shift the world towards peace and a better understanding of all mankind in its beautiful diversity. O people of the Scripture the Shariah (Divine Laws) of the Almighty is complete and needs no adjustment, for it is made clear, it is free from any need for amendment.
For our Lord says: “Whose judgeth not by that which Allah (Eloah) hath revealed: such are disbelievers.”

As Muslims we believe in Allah and the Holy Quran revealed unto us, we believe in His Angels, His Prophets and all that revealed to them, some of which to mention are (the Zabur, Torah, Injeel “Gospels of the Bible”, and the completion of all that have gone before the Holy Quran), and we believe in the Last Day. We are Muslims (People who surrender to His will)

We await, and look forward to your response.
May the Almighty Allah guide us all.
Fax: ***********
Email:**********
The United Muslim Nations International

alfaarooq1
alfaarooq1@yahoo.com

White Phosphorus: Israel fires artillery shells into Gaza

White Phosphorus: Israel fires artillery shells into Gaza

Gaza White Phosphorous

© Bernat Armangue/AP
A shell fired by the Israeli military explodes in the northern Gaza Strip.

Israel unleashed an artillery bombardment on Gaza today for the first time in its week-long offensive, prompting increased speculation that a ground invasion is about to begin.

Palestinian medical officials also said that an Israeli airstrike on a Gaza mosque had killed 10 people and wounded dozens more. Al Jazeera quoted witnesses as saying there were at least 200 people at prayer inside the Ibrahim al-Maqadna mosque in northern Gaza when the missile struck.

The Israeli TV station Channel 10 said the entire length of the Gaza Strip was under attack. Palestinian witnesses told Reuters the shelling had caused a large explosion in Gaza City and there were a series of blasts close to the frontier with Israel. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

Comment: The AP photo above shows what appears to be a white phosphorus shell fired into Gaza, as was used by Israel in Lebanon. White phosphorus is an indiscriminate killer that ignites once it is exposed to oxygen, producing such heat that it bursts into a yellow flame and produces a dense white smoke.

It causes painful burn injuries to exposed human flesh, as discovered by Lebanon’s Children at the hands of Israeli Phosphorus Bombs in 2006.

White Phosphorus is considered a chemical weapon by most governments around the world. Its use in civilian areas is banned by the Geneva Treaty of 1980. The United Nations considers such weapons illegal.

Israeli TV commentators said shelling could be used to clear Hamas-laid minefields ahead of a possible ground invasion. Israeli troops are massed on the border waiting for orders to go in.

Comment: Mine fields? The lies and excuses are wearing thin. With 1.5 million people concentrated in the tiny Gaza Ghetto, what possible use would they have for mine fields?

Speaking from Syria, the exiled Hamas leader, Khaled Mashaal, warned that any ground assault would lead Israel to “a black destiny of dead and wounded”.

Sustained artillery fire is likely to significantly increase the number of civilian casualties, according to a report on the website of the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz.

Israel’s first artillery use came shortly after Gordon Brown telephoned his Israeli counterpart, Ehud Olmert, urging him to stop the attacks.

Comment: Toothless. If Brown had any conscience he would act.

“The prime minister has spoken again today to Prime Minister Olmert, and is pressing hard for an immediate ceasefire,” a Downing Street spokesman said. “We are working urgently with international partners to address the underlying causes of the conflict, including trafficking of arms into Gaza … Moderation must prevail.”

Comment: Forget history, forget the slow genocide, its all about arms into Gaza, its the Palestinians own fault for resisting the brutal occupation of their lands and the cold, calculated slaughter of their families.

Earlier today, Israeli aircraft and gunboats continued attacking targets in Gaza. The Israelis struck the homes of two Hamas operatives, saying the buildings were used to store weapons and plan attacks. Hamas said one of its military leaders, Abu Zakari al-Jamal, was killed in an air raid last night.

More than 400 Palestinians and at least four Israelis have been killed since Israel launched its offensive last Saturday. The UN estimated yesterday that a quarter of the Palestinians killed were civilians.

George Bush today blamed the continuing violence on Hamas terrorism and offered no criticism of Israel in his first comments since the offensive began a week ago.

The US president condemned Hamas’s campaign of rocket attacks on Israel as an “act of terror” and said no peace deal would be acceptable unless the flow of smuggled weapons to terrorist groups was monitored and stopped.

“This recent outburst of violence was instigated by Hamas, a Palestinian terrorist group supported by Iran and Syria that calls for Israel’s destruction,” he said.

Comment: Lies piled upon lies, the psychopath Bush is complicit in the slaughter and – recognizing the acts of his own kind – no doubt feeding on every ounce of suffering that Israel can render from its captives.

The White House will not comment on whether it views the Israeli response as proportionate.

In his weekly radio address, Bush said Washington was “leading diplomatic efforts to achieve a meaningful ceasefire that is fully respected”.

He said he would keep the president-elect, Barack Obama, updated on the negotiations. Obama has refused to comment on the crisis while Bush remains in office.

The UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon last night urged world leaders to intensify efforts to achieve an immediate ceasefire.

Israel has said it will accept a ceasefire only if it is enforced by international monitors.

Palestinian militants continued to fire rockets into southern Israel today. There were no injuries, though one rocket hit a house in the southern city of Ashkelon, police said.

Foiled Attack on Israel Embassy in Mauritania

Foiled Attack on Israel Embassy in Mauritania

Mauritanian security forces foiled an attack on the Israeli embassy in the capital Nouakchott on Wednesday.

A civilian stepped out of a taxi opposite the embassy’s buildings, and began shouting religious slogans and hurling stones at the checkpoint, according to a report in the Mauritanian Taqadoumy.com.

Other reports said he threw an explosive device at the embassy and it failed to detonate

Forces were summoned to beef up security around the compound in case more serious attacks occurred.

The assailant, a Mauritanian in his late 20s or 30s, was reportedly taken into custody by the local riot police and is being investigated.

Security forces around the embassy compound have been on high alert since Israel launched its offensive on Gaza on Saturday.

Demonstrators took to the streets shortly after the attacks on Gaza began to protest against Israel’s actions.

Mauritania is one of three Arab League members – including Egypt and Jordan – that enjoys full diplomatic relations with Israel.

Earlier this week The Media Line reported that coup leaders in Mauritania were considering severing diplomatic ties with Israel, in what could be a blow to the United States’ diplomacy efforts in the Middle East and North Africa.

Mauritania underwent a coup last August, and has been facing diplomatic and economic pressure from the international community, including the U.S.

Washington suspended non-humanitarian aid to Mauritania following the coup.

Washington is calling on the coup leaders to restore the deposed president to his position in a legitimate, democratic and constitutional role and to restore the democratically elected government.

Sources in Nouakchott say the coup leaders are considering severing relations with Israel in order to secure financial aid from Libya and later from Gulf countries. Libya has conditioned any aid on cutting ties with Israel.

An official affiliated with the junta said the next elected government would cut relations with Israel.

These statements coincide with Israel’s operation in the Gaza Strip, in which up to 400 Palestinians, including civilians, have been killed.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry said these calls to sever relations were not new, and Jerusalem had not observed any significant change in the attitudes in Nouakchott, and did not see the government there taking any action to suspend relations.

Calls of this nature have been made in the past from the opposition, but when the opposition leader came to power he did not act on these statements, Israeli Foreign Ministry Spokesman Yigal Palmor told The Media Line.

“We’re engaged in contacts with the Mauritanian government and with other Mauritanian political forces who talk to us,” he said. “We’re examining the situation.”

The coup leaders, who are now the de facto rulers in Mauritania, can use developments in Gaza as an excuse for cutting relations, especially when anti-Israeli sentiments there are strong.

This is not the first time Israeli interests in Mauritanian are coming under attack.

A February 2008 attack on the Israeli embassy resulted in several people being wounded and was claimed by the Al-Qa’ida Organization in the Islamic Maghreb.

If relations with Israel are indeed slashed, this could deal a serious blow to Washington’s efforts to install democracy and push for normalization between Middle Eastern countries and its ally, Israel.

Mauritania could become more reliant on oppressive or extremist countries for aid, which could embolden anti-U.S. sentiment there and undermine democracy building.

It could also raise popular pressure on the regimes in Amman, Cairo and countries that maintain informal relations with Israel to take similar steps and sever or downgrade these ties.

There are already strong voices in Egypt and Jordan calling on their governments to cut ties with Israel until the Palestinian issue is resolved.

Iran on full alert in wake of Israeli raids

ISRAELI BID TO SUCK IRAN, US INTO THE FRAY?  BEWARE THE TREACHEROUS ZIONAZI!

“Only the military option can save Gaza,” said Brigadier General Mir-Faisal Baqerzadeh” — Israeli jets monitoring Iranian flights.

Iran on full alert in wake of Israeli raids
Wed, 31 Dec 2008 15:04:16 GMT

Israeli tanks taking position on the northern border with the Gaza Strip.

Iran’s Air Force is on alert after the country’s president envisaged major regional developments in the wake of the Israeli raids on Gaza.

The chief Iranian Air Force Commander Brigadier General Hassan Shah-Safi said on Wednesday that the ongoing critical situation in the Middle East has prompted the Iranian military to take necessary measures to ensure readiness in the event of the country becoming the target of an offensive.

“Iran’s Air Force has of late carried out 120 successful sorties along with long-range flights of 2,000 kilometers, and has also conducted unprecedented aerial missions,” Brig. Gen. Shah-Safi said.

The Air Force commander added that the enemy has been closely monitoring Iranian military planes. He went on to say that “unless Iran’s military remains constantly vigilant the enemy will deliver a blow, even a minor one, to our forces”.

The remarks come as Israeli strikes on Gaza entered a fifth day, without an end in sight to the largest assault on the beleaguered strip in decades.

Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Tuesday that the fierce Israeli air assault on Gaza, which “aims to root out Hamas and the Palestinians”, would only lead to the “disintegration of the Israeli regime”.

Facing growing international pressure, Israel’s top leaders have so far rejected the idea of a temporary ceasefire.

Israel is also massing its gunboats near the Gaza port and its ground forces along the border with Gaza in preparation for a possible ground offensive.

Earlier on Monday, a senior Iranian commander floated the idea that the time has come for Muslims to militarily stop Israeli crimes in Gaza.

“Only the military option can save Gaza,” said Brigadier General Mir-Faisal Baqerzadeh, Head of the Foundation for the Remembrance of the Holy Defense.

Mossad Matron Wants World to Share In Guilt for Crimes Against Humanity

Israeli Tanks Massed Near Gaza, Livni Wants International Backing for the Attack

Israeli tanks were massed at the Gaza border on Sunday as warplanes again pounded Hamas targets in the densely populated enclave as Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni urged the international community to cast blame on Hamas.

“I expect the international community, including the entire Arab world, to send a clear message to Hamas: ‘It is your fault. It’s your responsibility. You’re the one who’s being condemned,'” she told NBC’s Meet the Press in reference to the attack that has killed nearly 300 people in less than two days.

Dozens of tanks and personnel carriers idled at several points near the border after Israel warned it could launch a ground offensive in addition to its massive air blitz.

Hamas responded to the ongoing bombardment by firing rockets the farthest yet into Israel, with one striking not far from Ashdod, Israel’s second-largest port, some 30 kilometers (18 miles) north of Gaza. It caused no casualties, medics said.

The Islamist movement accused Israel of “committing a holocaust as the whole world watches and doesn’t lift a finger to stop.”

“The Palestinian resistance reserves the right to hit back at this aggression with martyr operations,” spokesman Fawzi Barhum told reporters, referring to suicide bombings which Hamas hasn’t carried out against Israel since January 2005.

Britain and Russia joined the growing international chorus for a halt to the violence.

Pope Benedict XVI implored the international community to do “all it can to help the Israelis and Palestinians on this dead-end road… and not to give in to the perverse logic of confrontation and violence.”

But Israeli Defense Minster Ehud Barak vowed to “expand and deepen” the bombing blitz, unleashed in retaliation for persistent rocket fire by militant groups.

“If it’s necessary to deploy ground forces to defend our citizens, we will do so,” his spokesman quoted him as saying.

The cabinet gave the green light to call up 6,500 reserve soldiers, a senior official told reporters after the meeting.

Warplanes continued to pound the impoverished and overcrowded territory of 1.5 million people, where many streets were deserted and schools and shops stayed shut as hundreds of funerals were held.

Jets bombed a series of tunnels on Gaza’s border with Egypt — a lifeline for Hamas used for smuggling in goods and weapons into the enclave, which has been virtually sealed by Israel since the Islamists violently seized power in June 2007.

At least two people were killed in the bombing.

Dozens of Gazans tried to break through the border into Egypt following the strikes, but were stopped by Egyptian police firing into the air, said an Egyptian security official.

Businesses in the occupied West Bank, including annexed Arab east Jerusalem, observed a strike in protest at the onslaught that one Palestinian human rights group called “the bloodiest day in the history of the (Israeli) occupation.”

Since early Saturday, at least 300 people have been killed and more than 600 wounded, medics said.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said the campaign was launched “in order to regain a normal life for the citizens in the south who have suffered for many years from incessant rocket, mortar and terror attacks.”

The Israeli bombardment has sparked widespread international concern.

In New York, the UN Security Council called for an “immediate halt to all violence” and urged all sides “to stop immediately all military activities.”

In Rome, the pope said that “the terrestrial homeland of Jesus cannot continue to be the witness of such bloodshed which is repeated ad infinitum.”

Egypt, which had brokered a six-month truce between Israel and Hamas that expired on December 19, said it was trying to negotiate a new ceasefire.

But a senior Israeli official told AFP that “we have our goals and our timetable and we don’t seek mediation.”

Israel’s main ally Washington has blamed Hamas “thugs” for provoking the offensive by firing rockets into the Jewish state from Gaza, and urged Israel to avoid causing civilian casualties.

The Israeli offensive sparked protests in the occupied West Bank, where one demonstrator was killed in clashes with police. More than 50,000 rallied in Egypt and hundreds in Dubai.

Israel unleashed “Operation Cast Lead” against Hamas in the middle of Saturday morning, with some 60 warplanes hitting more than 50 targets in just a few minutes.

By Sunday, some 230 targets had been hit, the military said.

Hamas has responded by firing more than 90 rockets and mortar rounds at Israel, killing one man and wounding a handful of other people.

Army chief Lieutenant General Gabi Ashkenazi told the cabinet on Sunday that half of Hamas’s rocket launch sites were destroyed in the initial wave of Israeli attacks.

The Israeli blitz came after days of spiraling violence since the expiry of the Gaza truce. It comes less than two months before snap parliamentary elections in Israel called for February 10.(AFP)

Israeli Army Gets Green Light for Gaza Operation

Israeli Army Gets Green Light for Gaza Operation

Hanan Awarekeh Readers Number : 58

25/12/2008 The Israeli defense establishment is currently preparing for a military move against Hamas targets in Gaza after it received the green light Wednesday from the Israeli Cabinet.

During a cabinet meeting about the situation in and outside the Gaza Strip, a senior Israeli occupation army officer gave ministers in attendance an overview of the potential retaliatory moves that the defense establishment is planning against Hamas’ regime. A media blackout was declared on the deliberations.

By late morning Wednesday, the Magen David Adom rescue service declared its highest level of alert.

An Israeli official told Israeli daily Haaretz that Israel’s response will go beyond the air raid, “Our response will be substantial and painful to Hamas,” the official said.

Most strikes will come from the air and be aimed at facilities believed to be of strategic importance to Hamas’ political and military leadership. However, the officer said that weather conditions are currently preventing the air force from launching the raids.

According to officials in Tel Aviv, the overview also included a special reference to the possible implications of attacking Hamas.

“We are not eager to strike, but we will not hesitate to act,” one official said. “If Hamas is looking for noise, we will make Gaza very noisy.”

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s government claimed it had shown restraint until now but vowed to act if the salvoes continued.

The same official said that Israel would be willing to extend the June cease-fire, which expired last week, if Hamas would agree to resume it.

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni is expected to arrive on Thursday in Cairo for a meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, whose administration helped facilitate the cease-fire. Sources close to Livni said she intended to tell Mubarak that Israel will not accept Hamas’ current terms for a ceasefire. Hamas’ statements also contained a similar mix of threats and assurances.

Meir Yifrach, head of Sdot Negev Regional Council, said that the current situation was intolerable and that “the people of the southern region of Israel are demanding that the government order the army to act in Gaza so that civilian life may be allowed to return to normal.”

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Wednesday night that he had ordered the Israeli army to prepare itself to deliver a “response” to the rocket attacks fired by the Islamic resistance groups in Gaza. He said Hamas was responsible and would pay a price.

“Anyone who hurts Israeli civilians or soldiers will pay the price in a big way,” Barak said in an interview on a Channel 2 talk show. “We will bring the solution, and we will not let this situation continue.”

Israeli defense officials said the army now had approval for a number of operations that would likely include heavy air strikes against Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets, as well as pinpoint ground operations against resistance infrastructure.

The ambiguity about the timing of an army operation was in line with what Olmert told the security cabinet on Sunday – that Israel would not give Hamas a “promo” of when and how it would respond.

However, hints that Israel’s response was well on the way could be found in a statement a government official released after the four-hour security cabinet meeting.

“Hamas bears sole responsibility for the deterioration in the South. They deliberately undermined the understandings reached through Egypt, and they acted to destroy the calm,” the official said, in what sounded like an explanation to the world of why Israel needed to act.

Meanhile, the Palestinian resistance factions said that more than 70 mortar shells and Katyusha and Kassam rockets pounded the Negev. The barrage hit communities throughout the South, reaching as far north as Ashkelon and as far south as Kerem Shalom. At least two Grad-model Katyusha rockets were fired into Ashkelon on Wednesday, and a Kassam with extended range hit Netivot. Nearly 60 settlers were treated for emotional trauma and anxiety.

“Hamas will hit not only Sderot, but also what lies beyond Sderot,” Hamas legislator Mushir al-Masri said, in a possible reference to extended ballistic capabilities.

Other spokespeople said the organization will agree to “resume” the ceasefire, if the organization’s conditions are met. Hamas is demanding an improved ceasefire agreement that also includes the West Bank.

In a statement by Hamas’ military wing, Iz al-Din al-Qassam, a spokesperson warned that “thousands of additional Israelis will soon be within the range of our rockets if Israel continues with its aggression.”

“The residents of the south will stay in the bomb shelters for a long time,” the Hamas statement continued, adding that “threats of an [Israeli] military offensive don’t scare us because we are more prepared than ever.”

All Israeli towns within a 30-kilometer radius of the Gaza Strip were hooked up on Wednesday to an early warning system designed to deliver rocket launch alerts. Among the newly-connected towns and cities are Ofakim and Netivot.

Ashdod, with its center just outside the 30-kilometer mark, is expected to be connected to the system within the next 24 hours. Some towns are already connected to the “Color Red” system, which alerts residents living within a seven-kilometer radius of the Strip.

Pray For Me, Father

A Banquet For Death

Pray For Me, Father

By Sherwood Ross

October 22, 2008 “Information Clearinghouse

Pray for me, Father, mine is the sin of cowardice

For I do not set myself on fire at the White House gate

To protest murder. I am a glutton for God’s blue sky.

Pray for me, Father, for my tax dollars set a banquet for Death

With napalm and daisy cutters and snakelike missiles

That blow apart other men and their wives and children

While I walk secure along the shore of the tranquil sea.

Pray for me, Father, and I will pray for you

I will pray for a church that does not decry an Inquisition

Where men are broken and driven mad in the dungeons

Of Bagram, Kabul, Gitmo and Abu Ghraib

A church of priests that recall Golgotha

As if Jesus and Jesus and Jesus by the thousands

Are not being crucified now by the Masters of War

Are not shuffling home on artificial legs

Are not staring sightless from wheelchairs

In VA hospitals into God’s blue sky.

Pray for me, Father, and I will pray for you.

© Sherwood Ross

‘Militants Are Not Taliban, We Are’

‘Militants Are Not Taliban, We Are’

by Ashfaq Yusufzai

PESHAWAR – The world knows the Taliban as armed fighters who have unleashed a wave of violence in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan including devastating suicide bomb attacks, the most recent on the luxurious Marriot Hotel in high-security Islamabad last week.

But not all Taliban wield guns. In seminaries scattered over the restive, northern parts of Pakistan, students or Taliban – a word in Pashto, the language of Pakistan’s Pakhtoons and Afghanistan’s Pashtuns – study the Quran and swear by peace.

“Yes. I’m proud to be a Talib. Because being Taliban I am able to study Quran and teach it to others,” says 21-year-old Rahimdad from the Darul Uloom Islamia seminary in Khairabad village of Mardan district, 120 kms north of this border city, when asked if he was a Talib (student).

He says he came here from Herat province in Afghanistan a year ago and intends to return when he graduates. “I don’t believe that Taliban are terrorists,” he asserts. “We want to spread the message of love and fraternity among the people of the world.”

His religious teacher, maulvi Zakirullah, also from Afghanistan’s Kunar province, too denies these students are terrorists. “We are against killing of anyone. We don’t favor killing the Americans. Our aim is to spread the message of love among people of all religions,” he tells IPS.

According to Peshawar-based political analyst Khalid Khan, Pakistan’s secretive military intelligence, ISI or Inter Services Intelligence, cobbled together an army by the name of Taliban in 1994, which went on to replace the bitterly-divided and corrupt mujahideen government in Kabul.

Most leaders of the Taliban government were graduates of seminaries in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province (NWFP). They brought most of Afghanistan under their control. But they were toppled by US-led forces in end-2001 in the wake of the World Trade Center bombings on Sep. 11 that precipitated the so-called “war on terror” launched by US President George W. Bush against Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda.

Seven years after, Osama bin Laden is still at large, and a resurgent Taliban has defied both the Pakistan and Afghan government, the latter propped up by 70,000 mainly western troops including US soldiers.

The Taliban in Pakistan’s religious schools say the “terrorist” label is unfortunate. “We don’t understand why the government calls the militants Taliban. Militants are not Taliban, we are,” says Shumaila Bibi, 19, who is veiled from head to toe. A student of Ummi Hafsa Darul Uloom, in Nowshera district, NWFP, she says they are taught to love humanity regardless of religion, caste and social status.

Says 17-year-old Nawaz, an Afghan who studies at Kosar seminary near Peshawar: “We condemn the blast in Marriot Hotel. Islam is against killing people. Those who do it will be held accountable on judgement day.”

Senator Maulana Samiul Haq is chancellor of Darul Uloom Haqqania, the biggest religious seminary in Pakistan. He says there are 3,500 students in the seminary and “they are peaceful and apolitical. It is incidental that some of the former graduates of my school have held top posts in the Taliban government in Kabul.”

Even the NWFP Information Minister, Iftikhar Hussain, backs the students. “The present crisis is not the handiwork of Taliban, but of secret agencies, that present the militants and criminals as Taliban,” he tells IPS. “Taliban don’t know guns, they are preoccupied with their studies, and examinations. They are so simple.”

Local communities support these students. Meals and clothes are given in charity. They are invited to people’s homes for religious festivities. Wali Shah, a college student in Dir, says: “Taliban play football, cricket and other local games in the evenings. Lots of people turn up to watch!”

According to a 2007 report compiled by the School and Literacy Department, there were 287 religious schools in Dir district with 8,421 students, both from Pakistan and Afghanistan. “We have 700 Taliban, who are studying jurisprudence, Quran and Hadith. They attend classes in the morning and then go back to different mosques where they reside,” says Maulana Mohammad Shakoor.

The number of religious schools countrywide has risen from 245 in 1947 to 6,741 in 2007. The province of Punjab accounts for 3,153 seminaries; NWFP 1,281, Sindh 905, Balochistan 692, Azad Kashmir 151, Islamabad 94, Northern Areas 185 and FATA 300.

The same report says only 22 percent of the schools were registered with the government. The NWFP has 3,795 male and 885 female teachers in 1,281 religious schools, 30 percent of whom are Afghans.

“Taliban are entirely apolitical. They neither listen to news nor read newspapers,” says Amjad Iqbal of Village Development Foundation, a non-governmental organization in Bannu district. He says the Taliban also give religious lessons to local children in the mosques for which they are paid a nominal amount.

Saira Bibi, a school teacher in Swabi district, which has 253 religious schools, tells IPS Taliban are highly respected by the local population. “We give free food, clothes, shoes and cash amounts to seek the blessings of Allah. Taliban are the messengers of Islam. They are the harbingers of peace,” she explains.

The Ego Must Die

The Illusion of the Ego

What in us blocks our connection with the spiritual depths? If heaven is real, why am I not in contact with it? All religions and paths address this central question, under a variety of names, the most common today in the West being “ego.” The term ego, in this context, alludes to our deeply ingrained self-referential, self-seeking disposition. Ego cuts us off from other people, from Nature, from God, from our true self, from our true responsibility, and from fulfillment of our destiny. Our ego is the great usurper. It focuses on our local independence, falsely presuming it to be a global independence. The ego convinces us that we are truly separate beings with ultimately separate will, having no inherent connection with other people or with God.
Religions and paths portray the nature of our egoism and how to deal with it in one of two quite distinct modes. Usually, and to our misfortune, the ways reify and solidify ego into a something, an enemy, which must be overcome, which must die, which inherently resides in our tainted nature, which must be purified. True enough. One cannot argue with the accumulated wisdom of great religions. For our modern culture, though, the notion that our ego must die seems frightening. More importantly, the notion that we harbor inherent spiritual taints gets interpreted by our self-bashing, insecure psychology to mean that we are bad ¾ something that we in the West have been trained to believe since childhood. We believe we are not good enough. So we don the knowledge of being corrupt to our core as a mantle of supposed wisdom, and flock to those that teach it. Then the religious teaching about egoism simply gets co-opted by the self-denigrating side of our ego, eagerly adopted and accepted as yet another weakness. We hang our heads and beat our breasts and feel the better for it. Unfortunately, all this only strengthens our egoism and leads us into an endless cycle, akin to a dog chasing its tail.
Casting our ego as the enemy in a holy war, an inner jihad, and winning that battle is an exceedingly difficult proposition, primarily because the ego proves to be a most subtle adversary. In fact, the ego will even join the battle against itself. It will take it on and say “this is wonderful, I’m going to battle against ego, I will become free, I will be wonderful, I will be better than I am now, and I will be better than other people, because I will be a highly evolved spiritual being.” The ego joins our forces. As an enemy, it infiltrates our lines, wearing our own uniform, its soldiers and officers indistinguishable from ours. How does one fight a battle against such a devious and resourceful enemy? For most of us, it comes to nothing but an increased layer of suffering as we merely fight ourselves in the name of spirituality and sink more deeply than ever into the morass of self-centeredness. Only the rarest of souls find a way through this conundrum.
An alternative, but also traditional view casts ego in an entirely different perspective, not as an enemy, but as an illusion, and invites us to see our ego for what it is: an empty, ephemeral sham, a hall of mirrors, a self-referential web. The rise of Buddhism in the West is, in no small part, due to this kinder yet no less incisive and perhaps more tractable formulation of the problem of egoism.
Our belief in our ego, or separate self, is in part learned from society. All the people around us labor under a self-centered perspective on life, which naturally devolves to impressionable children. Repeatedly shining the light of awareness directly on this sense of separateness gradually disperses it. If we look carefully for our ego, for this separate self that we think we are, we shall not find it.
Am I my body? I can control my body, I can be aware of my body, and my awareness is greater than my body. So I am probably not my body.
Am I my feelings? I can be aware of my feelings and have some rudimentary influence on them, so I am probably not my feelings.
Am I my thoughts? My thoughts claim the title of I, thinking “I think,” “I am hungry.” But that “I” is just a thought, having no more substance than any other thought. It fools me though, this thought “I.” I believe in it. I believe it refers to something real and substantial, to the real me. But if I look at it clearly, I see it as only a thought with no real referent. At best, I may have a vague idea that I am some combination of my thoughts, feelings, and body. Again it proves empty to the perspicacious observer.
How about my awareness? Am I my awareness? Two problems here. First, I have some control over what I am aware of. So there must be something deeper. Second, the deeper I go into awareness, the less it is centered in me, so how can that be me as a separate entity, as an ego?
How about my attention? How about that in me that decides, my will? This is the subtlest of all. Yet again, the deeper I look into my will, the less it is centered in me, and the more it opens beyond me.
So wherever we look, we do not find this self, this separate person that takes our name, this self-important actor on the stage of our life. The more carefully and persistently we look, the more this once-compelling ego, this self disappears. Or perhaps we see that it never existed to begin with. Gradually, our belief in our ego assumes a porous quality, which rather than cutting us off from others, merely clouds our relationships intermittently. This separate self never was. Our devotion to it shrivels and we are left to truly be ourselves, to play our unique role in the larger story of our common life. When moments come in which we fall back into that trance of selfness, we feel uncomfortable, like in a shoe that no longer fits, and we let it go.
Our ego, this illusory pattern, however, endures with remarkable resilience and persistence. Complete freedom from ego comes only at a very high station of spiritual development, something to which we may aspire and work for with diligence. The best approach lies somewhere between the two outlined above. Seeing and letting go can only work insofar as we are able to see. The depth and subtlety of our seeing must increase. For this, efforts of various kinds are necessary. These efforts may include grappling with some of the propensities of our separate self. Doing so can illumine the tentacles of egoism, while creating energy for seeing more. Only we must not have the idea that such struggles will, by themselves, reform our recalcitrant self-centeredness. A project of reform by force is doomed to fail. Efforts at reform can only be useful to the extent that they help us to see. Sensing the energy body and working at presence also help us see. And seeing, it is said, leads to liberation: liberation from the illusion of the ego and into the freedom of interconnectedness.

Distinguishing ego from true self
(Quotations from Sogyal Rinpoche)

Two people have been living in you all your life. One is the ego, garrulous, demanding, hysterical, calculating; the other is the hidden spiritual being, whose still voice of wisdom you have only rarely heard or attended to.
…you have uncovered in yourself your own wise guide. Because he or she knows you through and through, since he or she is you, your guide can help you, with increasing clarity and humor, negotiate all the difficulties of your thoughts and emotions…
The more often you listen to this wise guide, the more easily you will be able to change your negative moods yourself, see through them, and even laugh at them for the absurd dramas and ridiculous illusions that they are…
The more you listen, the more guidance you will receive. If you follow the voice of your wise guide… and let the ego fall silent, you come to experience that presence of wisdom and joy and bliss that you really are.
(p. 120-121)
The ego
So ego, then, is the absence of true knowledge of who we really are, together with its result: a doomed clutching on, at all costs, to a cobbled together and makeshift image of ourselves, an inevitably chameleon charlatan self that keeps changing and has to, to keep alive the fiction of its existence… Ego is then defined as incessant movements of grasping at a delusory notion of “I” and “mine,” self and other, and all the concepts, ideas, desires, and activity that will sustain that false construction… The fact that we need to grasp at all and go on and on grasping shows that in the depths of our being we know that the self does not inherently exist…
{The ego’s greatest triumph} is to inveigle us into believing its best interests are our best interests, and even into identifying our very survival with its own. This is a savage irony, considering that ego and its grasping are at the root of all our suffering. Yet ego is so convincing, and we have been its dupe for so long, that the thought that we might ever become egoless terrifies us.
(p. 117)
©1999 by Deb Platt

Passion, Activist Burnout and US

Passion, Activist Burnout and US

eileen fleming

Activists are driven by passion fueled by a radical hope that the power of just one can indeed help change the way things happen to be. St. Augustine defined Hope as having two children: Anger at the way things are and Courage to do something about it.

Activists are hopeful people but they are not necessarily optimistic for optimists look at the world through rose colored glasses while activists adorn the dark shades of realism. Justice and Peace activists who fight the good fight are fueled by the desire to begin the world again which requires an over throw of the status quo. The work of activists provides no perks and success is as rare as an honest politician.

“Within apathetic, mainstream American culture, people involved in the various movements fighting for real change are a minority, and can be taken for granted…we losing incredible people with a lot to offer by not supporting them, we are also failing them as a community. If our goal is to make the world a better place and forge new societies and communities based on mutual aid and sustainability, what does it mean when we can’t even take care of each other and keep things running…The dominant culture in this country does not teach us to appreciate the hard work and contributions of the people around us. We need to change this pattern…Next time you are working on a project with someone, take some time out to think about the amount of work that the both of you have put into the project, not how much more you have to do. Recognize and respect the time taken to work on the project and any sacrifices either of you have made in order to get things done. Be vocal! Give praise; don’t just assume that because you aren’t criticizing someone that they know you think they are doing a good job…Give credit where credit is due….what is important is that we have dialogue.” [1]

But before we converse, we must look within to discern the desires of our own heart which is the birthplace of passion and the sanctuary of love and only love will birth positive change. I am not talking sentimental, romantic or erotic love, but pure love that sees ‘the other’ as oneself. Jesus reminded us that the greatest command is to love God first [and God is Love] and then we are to love all our neighbors [everyone on the planet] as we love our self: in other words we are to treat ‘the other’ as we desire to be treated, for the law of karma is that what ever we put out will return to us in spades.

During my first of five trips to Israel Palestine, the whistleblower of Israel’s WMD Program, Mordechai Vanunu spoke to me about his 18 years in jail for telling the world the truth that Israel was already nuclear in 1985 and I was blown away that this former Orthodox Jew who was baptized a Christian just weeks before being kidnapped by the Mossad stated, “The Shen Beet, you know like the FBI and the Mossad, like your CIA…tortured me by keeping a light on in my cell constantly for two years. They told me it was because they were afraid I would commit suicide, and the oppressive camera was for my safety. They recruited the guards and other prisoners to irritate me. They would deprive me of sleep by making loud noises near my cell all night long. I chose to read them 1 Corinthians 13 instead.” [2]

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with THE TRUTH! It always protects, it always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.”- 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8

Psychotherapist Allen L. Roland wrote, “By loving yourself I mean giving full and honest expression of your deepest feelings regardless of the risks ~ which in itself is an act of love…Remember that love, joy and a state of soul consciousness, not anger, pain, resentment and ego consciousness lies deepest within each one of us and joins us to a Unified Field of love and soul consciousness…You cannot tap into your passion if you are careful or controlled by the ego’s need for outer validation versus inner validation. As such, you must be willing to say YES to yourself and not be controlled by fear particularly when you are on the path of the heart. YOU MUST LIVE YOUR DREAMS. And the ultimate dream is just being yourself and making a difference in the process. YOU MUST CONQUER FEAR…Most fear is false exaggerations appearing real and the most common fear is That being myself is not enough…YOU MUST SAY YES TO YOURSELF. When you say yes to yourself you are in sync with your destiny whereas saying no to yourself is the ultimate self-negation…YOU MUST MAKE A DIFFERENCE. Making a difference means being in service to a greater humanitarian need than the ego’s self-serving needs. And it starts by owning and believing in yourself. YOU MUST BE INNER DIRECTED…willing to stand alone and have faith in yourself even at the risk of those closest to you not understanding. Many are called, few listen and fewer still respond to their own inner voice but true passion begins with listening and responding to your true and authentic inner calling.” [3]Discerning ones inner calling requires being open to all of ones emotions, being open to all the people one meets, being fully present in every situation with a trust that the power of one can make a difference in our dysfunctional world that cries out for Tikkun; which is Hebrew for heal, mend and transform the world. The only way to do that requires we use our days living them to the full in service to ‘the other’ who is oppressed and who also is really our self in different skin and in a different place.

Martin Niemoller, came to German public awareness in 1933 with his book From U-Boat to Pulpit, outlining his journey from a U-Boat commander in World War I to a pastor in a Protestant church who survived Dachau.

He wrote about the apathy of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the purging of their chosen targets, group after group after group.

I spin his poem like this;

They came for the Communists, and we didn’t speak up because we weren’t Communist.They came for the Jews, and we didn’t speak up because we weren’t Jewish.

They came for Lebanon’s Christians, and we didn’t speak up because we weren’t Marionettes.

They came for Sudan’s blacks, and we didn’t speak up because we weren’t Sudanese blacks.

They came for the Catholics, and we didn’t speak up because we were Protestant.

They came for the trade unionists, and we didn’t speak up because we were white collar.

They came for the gays and lesbians but we didn’t speak out because we were straight.

They came for the asylum-seekers and refugees; they fed us suspicions and fears, soothed us with mindless entertainment and tried to keep us clueless to the true facts on the ground as we pursued keeping bread on the table and a dry roof above head.

Then they came for those who listened to the voice of their conscience [another name for God] and spoke the truth from their gut.

But there was nobody left to speak up.

1. http://slingshot.tao.ca/displaybi.php?00860162. Fleming Eileen, MEMOIRS of a Nice Irish-American Girl’s Life in Occupied Territory pages 105-106.

3. http://blogs.salon.com/0002255/2008/09/18.html#a2149

-###-

September 21, 2008 By Eileen Fleming, Reporter and Editor http://www.wearewideawake.org/ Author Keep Hope Alive and Memoirs of a Nice Irish American Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory, Producer “30 Minutes With Vanunu.” Permission is granted for reprint in print, email, blog, or web media if this credit is attached and the title remains unchanged. Only in Solidarity do “we have it in our power to begin the world again.”-Tom Paine

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Open Letter to Christian US Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan

Open Letter to Christian US Troops

in Iraq and Afghanistan

by Stan Goff

Who and Whose are you?: Confession of faith and renunciation of evil

On February 1, 1996, I retired from the United States Army. I had served in the 173rd Airborne Brigade in Vietnam as an infantryman, the 82nd Airborne Division, the 4th Infantry Division, 2nd Ranger Battalion, the Jungle Operations Training Center, 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment – Delta, the United States Military Academy at West Point, 1st Ranger Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group, 75th Ranger Regiment, and finally 3rd Special Forces Group. I worked all over “hot spots” in Latin America during the 80s and early 90s. I participated in Grenada and Somalia; and I was the team sergeant for a Special Forces A-Detachment during the 1994 invasion of Haiti.

In all that time, I was one of those atheists in the foxholes they say don’t exist. I could never have known that I’d find the faith to follow Christ and be baptized on Easter of my 56th year. But I did, even when I’d never grasped for spiritual reassurance as I slogged through the Central Highlands of Vietnam, leapt from airplanes into the night, or had helicopters shot out from under me. I’ve been taking up residence close to death for a long time. My faith isn’t about jumping over death. It’s about reconciling with God, who Jesus Christ showed us is Love.

When I was baptized I continued to carry my history; but one identity was sloughed off in the water and a new one born out of it.

I write this open letter to troops, brothers and sisters – of all branches – who profess the faith of Christ. I write you to ask that you remember your baptism, because at that baptism you declared your renunciation of evil.


The big preposition

Note the preposition. I didn’t say faith in Christ, I said faith of Christ.

Christian is a diminutive term; it means “little Christ.” To be a Christian is not to merely have faith in Christ. That’s too easy, and Jesus of Nazareth was not about easy. To be Christian is to aspire to have the faith of Christ.

Christ’s call is not to go along with the program, say the magic words, then be rescued from death. Christ did not merely command belief. Christ commands you to follow him. That command does not wait until death for it to become effective in your life. “Love your enemy.” This is not an etching at some altar that you visit; it is your path laid before you by the footsteps of Christ in this world. This is an action religion, not an abracadrabra religion.

Christ tells us to take up the cross. That means be willing to risk all, to suffer all when suffering can heal the brokenness in the world. The brokenness of 1st-Century Palestine was not altogether different from the brokenness of the world now.

Jesus’ ministry was conducted in the teeth of a Roman military occupation. Like Nuri al Malaki’s “government,” the Palestinian Jewish upper-class then lived in an uncomfortable collaboration with that occupation. There were also Jewish insurgents who fought the Roman occupation, who fought among themselves, and who attacked collaborating Jewish sects as well. One particular nationalist party that emerged prior to the revolt with Rome was known as the Zealots. You may recall that Jesus had such folk among his small band of disciples. “And when day came, he called his disciples and chose twelve of them, whom he also named apostles: Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, and James, and John, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James son of Alphaeus, and Simon, who was called the Zealot…” (Luke 6:13–15)

We can’t beat around the bush about this comparison. It’s clear.


We Romans

America is now Rome. You are Rome’s army of occupation. To the Roman soldier, when Jesus passed down the dusty byways of his occupied land, he appeared no more or less than a random Iraqi or Afghan appears to you.

What do you look like to them?

Jesus himself looked at the Jewish resistance to Roman occupation, then looked at the corpses rotting on crosses along the roads as Roman examples to the Palestinian Jew; and he chose a new way. His way was neither passivity, nor counter-violence, but non-violent resistance, just like Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King, who both cited Jesus’ ministry in their own prophetic missions.

Jesus looked at the violence-counterviolence cycle, and determined that each person in that system was redeemable as an individual – each a child of God, each beloved of God. Jewish, Roman, Samaritan, male, female… no matter. He also looked at how the system itself – operating with a self-reinforcing dynamic that transcends the individual – led people into the cycles of accusation and violence; and he proposed to undermine that system with this radical doctrine of spiritual equality, a redemption open to all through grace, and a redemption never imposed at the point of a sword… or under threat of a bomb.

In the original story, written in Greek, Jesus says, “I am not of this world.” At least that’s how many interpretations go. But the original Greek word kosmos means world, flesh, or system, depending on context.

“I am not of this system.”

Not simply the system of Roman occupation, but the system of violence-counterviolence… all systems of domination, because domination breeds the cycle of violence-counterviolence.


Pretensions of the devil

Scripture has been interpreted to suit plenty that is the very evil you renounced at your baptism. The subjugation of women. Slavery. War. Even the white supremacist sects have quoted Scripture. But in order to do so, literalism and decontextualizaton have been used to distort the essence and spirit of the Scriptures for the most impure of motives. In America, we hear much about a few references to sex in the Bible, but little about the many references to poverty, and less about Jesus’ provocations on peace.

When Jesus says his way will break the dominance of one generation over another within the family, between slave and master, between male and female, he does not confine this vision to heaven – where the upside-down “kingdom” without oppression lives in the dimension of Spirit. He says “on earth as it is in heaven.” Jesus was an earthy guy. He bathed in rivers, shat on the ground, and broke bread with fishmongers, tax-collectors, outcasts, prostitutes, Zealots… and he showed mercy to the child of a Roman soldier.

Even on the cross, in his final breaths as the Romans’ victim, he cries out to God on behalf of those who kill him: “When they came to the place that is called The Skull, they crucified Jesus there with the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. Then Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.'” (Luke 23:33–34)

What do you think that means? Certainly the Roman soldiers (soldiers like you) knew they were participating in a crucifixion. The Roman troops had done this many times. What they did not understand was how their system led them to do this.

In Matthew 27:54, it was a Centurion who heard these words – “forgive them” – and experienced an earthquake, saying, “Truly, this is the Son of God.” (Do you see how the symbolic truth here is more powerful than the literal seismology?)

Forgiveness unmasks Satan, who is not the boogeyman of popular culture, but the spirit in the culture – some would call it a zeitgeist – that acts as God’s jealous pretender, that promotes Self as God, that plays the accuser to stir up the mob (weapons of mass destruction?), that sets up idols… so that we will “know not what we do,” so we will not know who and whose we are.

You can hear the voice of Satan in every instance of boasting, humiliation of another, profaning of what we know to be sacred (like God’s Creation), every thought and word of aggression or revenge, every put-down of other people (all beloved of God). Where you are, you can see how the state of war and occupation – putting you at odds with an occupied population that does not want to be occupied – amplifies and focuses the malevolent spirit. Now ask yourself why?

Why do troops run down civilians with vehicles to avoid slowing down? Why do troops throw bottles and cans at pedestrians to entertain themselves? Why did the massacres like Haditha occur? Why did the utter destruction of Fallujah happen? Why are wedding parties bombed by US aircraft? Why did a whole squad participate in the premeditated half-hour-long rape and murder of a screaming 14-year-old girl? Why is it that approaching an invader’s roadblock can carry death sentence for a whole family? Why can children be woken from their beds by soldiers kicking down the house doors? Why are thousands held imprisoned without cause? Why are Iraqi and Afghan elders obliged to obey 20-year-old invaders who can’t even speak their language? Why do your peers (perhaps even you) refer to all Iraqis or Afghans with epithets? Why do your peers laugh when they retell stories of their own cruelties and their humiliations of the people whose nations they have invaded? Why are you there?

What is the spirit in our culture that spins out clever excuses for these evils? It is that same spirit that you renounced at your baptism, which I call on you to remember now.

Remember your baptism, where you renounced Satan.


Making and unmaking enemies

Do you really understand – any better than the Roman soldiers who “did their jobs” at Golgotha – how this system has led you to where you are today? You are in the system; but that system is not God’s. It is a system of human concupiscence, human malice, human domination, human hubris… a system that functions when you follow the crowd against the Holy Spirit. Satan loves a crowd. These are the weapons of the Satanic spirit that seizes the lynch mob, that calls us to domination and calls it self-defense – even altruism. This is the spirit of our zeitgeist.

Remember your baptism. You declared your renunciation of Satan, and you made that declaration to God. Did you think it would be easy?

The Roman soldiers had been convinced, and had convinced themselves, that they were right to do what they did. To make it alright in their own minds to do what they did, they had to withdraw recognition of the Jewish Palestinians’ basic humanity. I don’t know what they called the Palestinians, but I am sure there was some equivalent of the term “rag head” or “hajji.” And in turn, no doubt, many angry Jews in Palestine had dehumanizing epithets for the Romans.

That’s the cycle. And as Gandhi said, “and eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” Jesus said the same thing. He said that not only were you not to attack your enemies, you are commanded by God to love them.

It was on the mountainside, there with His disciples sitting before the crowds, He said, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous.” (Matt 5:43–45)

That’s how Christ told us to break the cycle of enemy-making. Fight the system by loving the “enemy,” but fight the system nonetheless. Provoke with your presence, but do not batter. This is how demonic power is unmasked, and how it was unmasked on the cross, where Christ baited a snare for Satan with his own frail body.

Loving the enemy neutralizes the category of enemy.

Unfortunately, even with phalanxes of chaplains ready to distort and press the message of Christ into the business of war, this means that you are now part of an organization that has no reason to exist without an enemy. The ethic of the military is inscribed in the infantry phrase, “close with The Enemy and destroy him.” The ethic of Christ is inscribed in neighbor-love – love of anyone who is near, and enemy-love – the unmaking of the category of “enemy.” These two perspectives – military doctrine and the ethic of Christ – cannot be reconciled.

“For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors (enemies who exploited the people for the economic benefit of Rome) do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles (those who were not of the Jewish nation) do the same? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matt 5:46–48)

Christ told you to “love your enemies.” Break the cycle of enemy-making.

Yet the armed forces are based, at their very core, on the existence of an enemy to destroy. The very doctrine that governs your organization, your technology, and your methods, cannot exist without The Enemy. To accomplish that, the armed forces must do two things: they must devalue the lives of all who are not members of the nation, and they must set up an idol to supplant God.


The idolatry of nation

In your military chapels hang American flags. But God’s Creation does not stop at the border of the United States; and God’s love is not extended exclusively to Americans; just as God’s love was not extended exclusively to the Jews, but also embraced Samaritans and Gentiles and tax-collectors, and even the Roman soldiery who conducted the crucifixion of Jesus. And when we say we are blessed, we need to understand that blessing is not a reward of material goods or social power. To bless means to make whole… to heal brokenness. The root word in “salvation” is not save, but salve… a healing balm. If God is to bless America, then first and foremost, that means “heal” America – reconcile America to God. Not put the symbol of political authority in the chapel where it can pose as something holy. America cannot be blessed by God without that same blessing – that same making whole – extending to the entire human family, because under God, the human family is indivisible.

As theologian Shane Claiborne notes:

No wonder it is hard for seekers to find God nowadays. It is difficult to know where Christianity ends and America begins. Our money says, “In God we Trust.” God’s name is on American money, and America’s flag is on God’s altars.

The Hebraic tradition of Jesus forbids idolatry. Making the flag of a nation, one that has entered history only recently and will as surely leave it some day, an object of worship is idolatry. For God clearly says, “You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I am a jealous God …” (Exodus 20:3–6) And at the heart of belief is not whether we have the proper mental acquiescence to a particular religious decree but whether or not we will follow this God who loves so passionately that even the enemy becomes the object of love. Such love is always contrary to the systems of empire and domination.

Jesus clearly refuses the claim of Caesar over his life, economically and as a point of worship. Remember, he asks the followers of the Pharisees and Herod to hold up a coin with a graven image, an image of Caesar – the “divine one,” an image explicitly forbidden by Judaic law, and then says, “give to this image, this false God, what it is due.” “…Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Mark 12:17)

Jesus was facing an attempt to entrap him in a debate about not paying taxes to The Enemy (Rome).

His reply: Caesar’s money? That’s part of Caesar’s system, not mine, and not God’s.

The use of this story today to claim one realm for religion and another for obedience to the state, the idea that there were two separate spheres in the state and religion then at all, is a grotesque retrojection of later interpretations into 1st-Century Palestine. It is an absurdity that exploits our historical ignorance about that time and place. This obedience-to-the-state interpretation of the story of the coin with Caesar’s graven image was proffered when the church was merged with the state… and it is blasphemy, a demonic co-optation of Scripture by principalities and powers to trick subject populations into support for the schemes of power.

Christ didn’t obey the state; he subverted it. Then the state bowed to the lynch mob and nailed this gentle rabbi to a cross for a slow and painful execution.

There are a couple of things that we can never seem to separate from the state, however: money and war.


The pigeon-sellers of war

The one time Jesus became physically angry in Scripture was when he overturned the tables of the pigeon-sellers and money-changers who were encamped on the steps of the temple, driving them out when they exploit and abuse and rob the poor ones who only seek obedience to God, corrupting a practice that was meant to connect and honor and instead making it an exploitive practice done in the name of religion and under the sanction of Rome. (Mark 11:15–18)

Remember your baptism; and know that God’s currency is courage in love, not the currency of Caesar that dissolves communities with obsession and envy and war. Can you see the money-changers at work again? Look around you now at the orgy of war-profiteering, the get-rich(er)-quick schemes that attach to war like pilot fish on a shark. But the shark must have enemies to feed upon.

Now, even when there is no credible military threat to the United States that a standing military can prevent, you are being bent to the will of a doctrine that must have The Enemy. If there is no enemy, then one must be created. The Enemy is the raison d’être of the armed forces.

And so other nations – nations of people who have already suffered terribly – were selected to become The Enemy in order to justify the plundering of their resources and the subsidized economies of war – from no-bid contracts for hi-tech weapons to contractors who pay exorbitant salaries and charge outrageous prices to wash your clothes, feed you, and run facilities that insulate you from the harsh and incessant realities of the nations you now occupy.

Do you really think that were it not for oil, you would even be in that region? Do you know how many campaign contributions are funneled to politicians of both parties by “defense” contractors?

Enemies make money. Enemies are good business. The business of war is good these days. The structures of evil and the evil of structures are visible to anyone who consents to see.

Consenting to see constitutes an entry through the passageway of Grace.


Entering the New Life

You – as an individual human being – are redeemable through grace. Faith – radical trust – is how we act into Grace. “Consider the lilies of the field…”

All the excuses and twisted explanations that are made for these wars of occupation – and that is what they are, lies and excuses – are designed to clear away the psychological and spiritual obstacles to your carrying out this occupation of other peoples’ lands. The politicians are creating the twisted logic. The contractors are supporting the twisted logic. The warlike culture in America is directed by the very spirit you renounced at your baptism. The malevolent spirit is not just the devil; it is a devil-maker… a demonizer, an enemy-maker.

The devil – the malevolent within our zeitgeist – demonizes Arabs (our brothers and sisters before God), demonizes Muslims (our brothers and sisters before God) and expresses these explanations-for-war as pus is expressed from an infected wound.

Even some clergy are complicit – as it was in the time of Jesus, when the clergy itself called for his execution. (Mark 11:17)

You – soldier, sailor, airman, marine… and you, officer – must pray for them; and you must not obey them.

You know, many of you, that the ugliness of any description of war can never be equal to the stark and actual obscenity of war. That obscenity is the visible face of Satan that many of us are working very very hard not to see.

It’s the twisted imitator of God, the demonic spirit, the misleader… that crafts a War Jesus. That millions have been misled does not in any way change what it is.

Jesus never gave his sanction to war. The most common quote from scripture used by warmongering government and clergy is Luke 12:49–53, where Jesus says He will sow discord in the family.

I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! But I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is completed! Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

He does not say “not peace, but war.” He’s says “not peace, but division.” And the fault line for that division is between generations. Age and gender in 1st-Century Palestine defined familial authority. Familial authority was the basis of social stability (the “peace” of Power). Get your head around that.

These divisions are not between brothers and sisters who are the co-children of God, but between generations and the hereditary powers that inhered in the system of human authority. To name this passage a call to war, or its justification, simply because it says he comes not to bring “peace” to domination in the patriarchal household, is a rhetorical acrobatic, just as the return of Caesar’s image is not by any stretch a call to obey the government. This passage is a call to divide human authority in order to reunite authority under a loving God. And it is a clear call.

The official doctrine of the armed forces is based on an Enemy. The doctrine of the Kingdom of God “on earth as it is in heaven” has no enemies.

Ever since Constantine subverted the church by making it a state religion, the powers and principalities have taken the name of Christ and abused it to make war. Christ invoked to support prejudice and oppression. Christ invoked to line pockets (ignoring that Jesus said you cannot serve God and money at the same time). (Matt 6:24) Look past these centuries of pretenders, because the Word that is the Christ remains unshakable, even when it is a minority view in a broken and warlike culture. You are called to disobey human authority each and every time that authority commands you to increase the brokenness of the world.

Refuse to fight.

Refuse to support the fighting.

Lay down your weapons and refuse to fight, and you will be blessed. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matt 5:9).

You will be healed and made whole; you will be reconciled to God because you will have begun your reconciliation with the billions of human beings who are – under God – one family.

You will be reviled – powerfully at first – as Christ was on the way to Golgotha. The malevolent spirit will writhe. You will be ridiculed as an extremist, less-than-a-real-man (or whichever other gendered attack), an apostate, just as Jesus was when even his closest friends refused to acknowledge their relation to him while the crowd howled for his blood. And you will enter into conflict with your own families.

You will not be nailed to a cross; but you may be jailed, spat on, isolated, abused… but you will also be embraced, accepted, and loved. We already love you.

This is what you need far more than the esteem of the demonic macho culture of war that glorifies the taking of human life – God has already forgiven your past and pointed to the path ahead. Do not any longer give the glory to Rome that belongs to God.


From Jerusalem to Baghdad

Do not expect praise or stained-glass or elegiac music in the background when you refuse. This path blazed by Christ is gritty and hard. As George MacLeod once said,

I simply argue that the cross should be raised at the center of the [street market] as well as on the steeple of the church. I am recovering the claim that Jesus was not crucified in a cathedral between two candles, but on a cross between two thieves; on the town’s garbage heap; at a cross road, so cosmopolitan they had to write His title in Hebrew and Latin and Greek…

At the kind of a place where cynics talk smut and thieves curse and soldiers gamble. Because that is where He died. And that is what He died for. And that is what He died about. That is where [Christians] ought to be and what [Christians] ought to be about.

“About” in a place not unlike Mosul or Baghdad or Bagram or Khoust.

The mission that made Jesus into the Christ, the anointed, was not cleaned and pressed, not shiny like a supermarket, not sanitary like a freshly scrubbed bathroom, not air-conditioned, not safe. You are at the kind of place where God breaks into the world to the exact degree that you let yourself become a “little Christ” – the hands and feet and eyes and ears of Christ. Christ doesn’t demand your mere belief. Christ demands participation in the work of God.

Lay down your weapons, refuse your orders, accept the ridicule and abuse of the mob that “does not know what it is doing,” and Christ will walk beside you.

You’ll be surprised at how many of us will walk beside you, too.

Who would lead a total revolution that would shake off internal oppression as well as the foreign yoke… Jesus’ approach stood in unique opposition to the prevailing assumptions of his day. He articulated an altogether different way… He did not come in the sectarian guise of his time, offering redemption only to those belonging to a particular group, nor did he adopt a primarily adversarial stance. He came with a prophetic message concerned for the good of all and with an eagerness to bring God’s kingdom within reach of everybody, even the enemy.

[from Jesus and the Non-Violent Revolution, by Andre Trocme]

Remember your baptism.

Your allegiance is to the eternal God, not the flag of a transient empire.

Who and whose are you?

You will hear people say that this burnt-out veteran has no authority to speak as a Christian on these matters. And I am burnt out; and I did come to Christianity late in life. But I am not making any of this up. Honest and fearless Christian theologians of the ecumenical, prophetic, and evangelical churches have spoken out against war, and in exactly the terms presented here. I bring nothing original to this plea for obedience to the God of the Nazarene.

I write to you as one who has shared your experience, not that of the clergy or the Academy. I have known your position, trapped between the regrets and guilt of the past and the anxieties of the future, plodding against the current of Holy Spirit to clutch at the “esteem” of your militarized nation, “proving” yourselves again and again to your peers who define masculinity and human value by the ability to risk one’s own safety to dominate or destroy others.

That is who I was before I was baptized into who and whose I am, and that is why I can tell you that the risk you must take is the risk not to dominate. It is the risk of losing the esteem of those who “know not what they do.” Seek your redemption and the redemption of the world, the flesh, the system… by taking up the cross, walking the painful path to Golgotha, and overcoming your alienation from the triune God, who Paul – himself a violent persecutor of Jesus’ followers until his epiphany – called Love, Grace, and Fellowship with your human family.

The fellowship you lose if and when you refuse to fight, if you refuse to give another hour of support to this obscene enterprise, will be replaced not seven-fold, but seven-hundredfold by the fellowship of Peace: Christians, non-Christians, veterans, and non-veterans, and from many nations. This Pentecost waits for you.

Have faith, knowing that faith is not sorcery… not magic… not abracadabra.

Faith is radical trust that God has your back. And trust the evidence not of what those around you try to excuse and explain, but of what you see them actually do.

Watch how your institution treats “the least among us,” because that is how the institution is treating Christ (Matt 25:40). You cannot point a gun at another human being, frighten a child, bully a man, demean a woman, violate the sanctity of a threshold, or kill, and not be doing this violence to Christ. There is nothing circumstantial about it. Christ was categorical about this.

You must resist; and you must do so without violence and be prepared to love those who abuse you for your refusal. And trust, too, that all will be well, even though you might pass through a dark night first.

Your obedience to peer pressure and your obedience to the government are both superceded absolutely by obedience to God.

Elections will not stop this war, just shift its emphasis. Only you will stop it, starting with yourself. That is the way Jesus worked; and at your baptism you promised to follow the Christ.

Refuse your work. Refuse your orders. Refuse to pick up the weapon and fight; and pray for the redemption of those who will stand against you when you stand with God.

When you do, and do so in the name of Christ, there are thousands more waiting that will follow. And there is One who will walk beside you every step of the way.


Links for Christian troops ready to say no:

NOTE

From Wikipedia on Conscientious Objection:

A 1971 United States Supreme Court decision broadened U.S. rules beyond religious belief but denied the inclusion of objections to specific wars as grounds for conscientious objection. Some desiring to include the objection to specific wars distinguish between wars of offensive aggression and defensive wars while others contend that religious, moral, or ethical opposition to war need not be absolute or consistent but may depend on circumstance or political conviction. Currently, the U.S. Selective Service System states, “Beliefs which qualify a registrant for conscientious objector status may be religious in nature, but don’t have to be. Beliefs may be moral or ethical; however, a man’s reasons for not wanting to participate in a war must not be based on politics, expediency, or self-interest. In general, the man’s lifestyle prior to making his claim must reflect his current claims.” In the US, this applies to primary claims, that is, those filed on initial SSS registration. On the other hand, those who apply after either having registered without filing, and/or having attempted or effected a deferral, are specifically required to demonstrate a discrete and documented change in belief, including a precipitant, that converted a non-CO to a CO. The male reference is due to the current “male only” basis for conscription in the United States.

In the United States, there are two main criteria for classification as a conscientious objector. First, the objector must be opposed to war in any form, Gillette v. United States, 401 U.S. 437. Second, the objection must be sincere, Witmer v. United States, 348 U.S. 375. That he must show that this opposition is based upon religious training and belief was no longer a criterion after cases broadened it to include non-religious moral belief, United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163 and Welsh v. United States, 398 U.S. 333. COs willing to perform non-combatant military functions are classed 1-A-O by the U.S.; those unwilling to serve at all are 1-O.

This open letter and other written material (like that found in the enclosed links) opposing war on moral and/or religious grounds “demonstrate a discrete and documented change in belief, including a precipitant, that converted a non-CO to a CO,” if they are listed as the persuasive moral, religious, and philosophical arguments leading to your objector status.

September 18, 2008

Stan Goff [send him mail] is the author of Hideous Dream: A Soldier’s Memoir of the US Invasion of Haiti, Full Spectrum Disorder, and Sex & War. He is retired from the United States Army. His blog is at StanGoff.com.

Copyright © 2008 Stan Goff

THE ONE TRUE RELIGION

Universal Insanity

“THE ONE TRUE RELIGION”

Peter Chamberlin

The One True Religion is the worship of The Living God and of the life that flows forth from Him. Every religion has taught that it alone possesses the way home to God (salvation). The fact that there are so many different religions is proof that the One True Religion does not yet exist upon this earth. If The Light from the One True One were ever to shine forth here, then all lesser lights would be revealed as the mere reflections that they truly are. Every religion contains parts of The One. One religion contains more of The One than all of the others combined. But none of them is that One.

God is just. This means that He gave The Light to everyone. Different cultures formed different religions based on different understandings of The Light. The Light is known by many different names, from Jerusalem , to China , to the Arizona reservations. It is the same Light shining-forth from all. Regardless of what is taught, all religions were created by men, not God, who did their absolute best to faithfully reflect The Light unto their brethren. There truly are as many ways to receive The Light as there are different types of people to receive it. The differences between people and their religions is there because that is the way that He Who Created All Things wanted it.

Since religions can only be fully understood by experiencing them, I can only speak about the one that teaches of the Son of God. I know Jesus. He was God, born in the form of a man. He was born of a virgin. He died a horrible death and arose from the dead, fully alive again, in order to reign over creation and to deliver The Living Word of God to mankind.

After He died and resurrected as The Holy Spirit, mankind created a worship system around Him and has sought to contain His Light locked-away in a darkened box, called a “church,” ever since then. He is not confined by man’s beliefs about Him. He is to be found in the middle of an open field, just as surely as He dwells in any church.

MATT. 18:20 , “…wherever two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Simple spiritual truths are buried under mountains of contrived “enlightenment.”

The faith, as practice historically, is largely the worship of the “holy men” messengers of God, not of the Light that they bore. It has become just another form of ancestor worship. The whole truth about Jesus and The Living Words He spoke is to be found in just the first four books of The New Testament Bible. No other third party explanations of His Words, or of His nature are needed. The Living Word explains itself.

LUKE 14:26, “The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father shall send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you…”

Over the centuries, well-meaning pastors have sought to add their own unnecessary interpretations to The Living Words, according to their ability to understand and to communicate that knowledge unto others. It is here where the belief system has faltered and gone wrong. Many have let their own egos subvert the teachings. They became deluded about self-importance and began to teach their own opinions as divinely inspired church doctrine. They misunderstood The Word. They came to believe that they had deservedly received some special wisdom from God and, as a result, they developed spiritual “superiority complexes.” From their lofty positions of trust they sought to dominate their blind “inferiors,” preaching intolerance of everything that they didn’t accept or understand. They preached their own bias as God’s work. They used guilt as a weapon to force submission, insisting upon total deference to their nearly infallible superiority.

MARK 12:38 , “Beware of the scribes who love to go in long clothing, and love

salutations in the marketplace,

And the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost rooms at feasts:

Which devour widows’ houses, and for pretence make long prayers:these

shall receive greater damnation.”

Divisive preachers teach narrow restrictive interpretations of carefully selected scriptures (usually from the Old Testament). They prefer prophecy’s warnings, instead of its promises. Their message is of widespread doom, not one of deliverance. They propagate a version of Jesus Christ that allegedly loves everyone, yet excludes the vast majority of the human race as being “sinners,” unworthy of heaven. They incite their followers, urging them on in political confrontations over emotional issues, with the intention of broadening their own authority by the multiplying of divisions. They insist upon an absolute loyalty to their dictatorship from the pulpit. Control, not universal salvation, is their true goal. Their hearts may have indeed been enlightened, but their minds must have been blinded by the sight.

JOHN 9:39 , “For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not

might see; and that they which see might be made blind.”

True Christian faith has its arms wide-open to all. The reward of salvation is for everyone on the planet who faithfully seeks God. Jesus clearly promised that the act of seeking Him guarantees that we will find Him.

MATT. 7:7, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and

it shall be opened unto you.”

Preachers who proffer un-Biblical teachings which imply that there is no certain way home to The Father are sowing falsehood. The idea that we might honestly work hard, seeking salvation for our whole lives and somehow might still miss the mark, is false doctrine. Heaven (whatever it actually is) is an all-inclusive place. There are indeed “many mansions” there. Every person is being called home to return to Him.

Modern Christianity is plagued by the widespread dissemination of false doctrine. The common usage of symbols and symbolic rituals in worship has led to a new form of idolatry, as people, inanimate objects, even ideas, are believed to possess spiritual power. The worship of symbols (“saints,” wooden crosses, even worship of the savior’s blood) is primitive idol-worship. Any living thing, object, or superstitious rite that you place between you and God only serves as a barrier to hide His Light from you.

The worship of “mammon” (wealth) is another form of idolatry, since success and money become as gods unto you. Jesus clearly taught that the accumulation of wealth is an obstacle to be overcome by those seeking salvation.

MATT. 19:21-24, “…if thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give it

to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven…”

…a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom…

…it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to

enter the kingdom…”

Even so, many preachers of deception validate greed by arguing that some men are “blessed by God” and entitled to the wealth and power that they (somehow) have deservedly “earned.”

MATT. 23:12 , “…whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall

humble himself shall be exalted.”

Our commandment from The Living Word is clear—

MARK 12:30 -31, “…Thou shalt love the Lord, thy God with all thy heart, and

with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength…

…And…Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”

Our commission is equally clear, to help the helpless, to bring hope where there was none. This is the solution to all of the Earth’s problems. He said that whenever we show human compassion and help those who suffer and are in need, we are serving Him.

MATT. 25:35-36, 40, “For I was hungry and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger and ye took me in.

Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye

came unto me.”

“Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these…, ye have done

it unto me.”

We are called to serve the living, acting as the helping hands of God, The Living Word. We are commanded to do this without thought for ourselves. We do not need to develop a plan for serving, that has already been done for us.

MATT. 6:19, 34, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth…”

“Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for

the things of itself.Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”

Help anyone that He sends to you. Go out of your way to find those who suffer behind closed doors. Extend unto them the helping hand of your merciful loving Father.

We best serve God’s will when we go forth to serve mankind. Any pastor who preaches the spiritual superiority doctrine, which implies that those of us who have been greatly blessed spiritually deserve earthly rewards for overcoming, is teaching error.

The worst of these false doctrines teaches that our reward for service is imminent, as some will soon be deservedly “raptured,” lifted-up unto God, escaping the horrible judgment that is surely on its way. Jesus never said that we will escape the “great tribulation.” The word “rapture” is never uttered once by our Lord.

MATT. 24:7-9, “…nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:

and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes in diverse places.

All these are the beginning of sorrows.

Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be

hated of all nations for my name’s sake.”

MATT. 24:29-31, “Immediately AFTER THE TRIBULATION of those days

shall the sun be darkened…and the powers of heaven shall be shaken:

…and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds…

And He shall…gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of

Heaven to the other.”

When preachers promise their followers that some of them merit escaping the coming judgment, they falsely delude them into thinking that they are already perfected, spiritually complete. They distract the focus of the faithful away from the true Path (which is always directly ahead), urging them to raise their bowed heads from the Path and “look up, for their redemption draweth nigh.” These false prophets have made you lazy, as you are encouraged to sit and wait for that which you have “earned.”

Some will protest that in the rapture believers are lifted-up, while unbelievers are “left behind.” Scripture clearly quotes Jesus’ teaching that it is the evil ones who are taken out of this world and then burned in the fire, leaving behind God’s chosen ones.

MATT. 13:41 , “The Son of man shall gather out of his kingdom all things that

offend, and them which do iniquity.

And shall cast them into a furnace.

Then shall the righteous shine forth…”

Anyone who has been deceived into praying to be among the “fortunate” ones who are “taken-away,” is asking to be among the damned. If you know what is good for you, you will pray to be left behind.

Allowing oneself to depend upon some preacher, some priest, or even a pope is a sure way to be misled. Trust your own heart. No church (or no amount of church-going) can save you; only you can save yourself. Forget about seeking signs, belief in magic, or in the supernatural. The way home is simple, but it is never easy. Keep your eyes focused on the Path to God, which is always directly in front of you. It is never necessary to turn down some side road, or to make some changes first, before walking to Him.

You’ll never be closer to God on this earth than when you are in the presence of a newborn child. Whenever you gaze into that baby’s innocent eyes, you are looking directly into God’s eyes. Every person’s eternal fate is determined primarily by how he or she has treated the little children that they have encountered in their life.

MATT. 18:5-14, “…whoso shall receive one such little child in my name

receiveth me.

But whoso shall offend one of these little ones…it would be better for him that

a millstone were hanged around his neck, and that he were drowned…in the sea.”

“…despise not one of these little ones…”

“…it is not the will of your Father…that one of these little ones should perish.”

Look deep within your own mind to find God.

LUKE 17:21, “…The kingdom of God is within you.”

His voice is heard within the mind as the conscience.He dwells within the human heart, the seat of all emotions.This is why religion (and personal salvation) is a purely emotional experience.The personal expressing of emotional grief, or feelings of guilt, and the releasing of pure emotional love for the Creator is the essence of all religion.

Religion is the highest form of psychology, a healing experience for both the mind and the soul. Hearing the words of life (the Living Word) actually triggers a psychological process within the mind. The Living Words cause, or reveal, an inner struggle within the self. Psychic turmoil ensues, as both moral (positive) and immoral (negative) sides of the self wage psychological warfare against their opposites. Once begun, the mental anguish thereby released can never be stopped. It will endure no matter what, from that point forward, and it can only be allowed to progress to its natural conclusion (spiritual healing), or else be suppressed, in a vain attempt to deny insanity. The healing point is reached when the person voluntarily surrenders himself to the Father’s healing love. It is experienced as a split personality, before the mental breakdown comes, followed almost immediately by the beginning of healing. Often, this breakdown comes at a church altar.

Jesus came here to introduce this spiritual struggle into every human mind, as the means to establish His moral authority over us. Through the “chosen” saved ones, He introduces Himself to the world at large, in order to interject Himself into the greater global struggle over mankind’s future direction.

MATT. 10:35 ,36, “For I am come to set a man at variance against his father,

and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her

mother-in-law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.”

MATT. 10:34 , “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth:

I came not to send peace, but a sword.”

MATT. 12:25 , “…Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation:

and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand.”

MATT. 12:30, “He that is not with me is against me.”

The global conflict will come to an end when the power of The One True Religion comes into being and takes hold throughout the world, alive within every mind. The One True Faith will form when enough people hear the Living Word and believe in the Great Author. This “critical mass” of faithful believers will come together, uniting in common prayer, praying for the one goal of universal earthly enlightenment. Some people think that world peace should be that one goal. I say to them, that world peace will come with common understanding of The Light.

ISAIAH 2:4, “…They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears

pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they

learn war any more.”

Some people believe that ultimate knowledge could somehow set us all free. I say to them, that all knowledge will be given. Nonetheless, even knowledge as great as this could not free us from human nature.

MATT. 10:26 , “…there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed, and hid that

shall not be known.”

JOHN 14:16 , 17, 26, “…The Father…shall give you another Comforter, that He

may abide with you forever.”

“Even the Spirit of truth…ye know Him; for He dwelleth within you, and shall

be in you.”

“…The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my

name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance,

whatsoever I have said unto you.”

The Holy Spirit IS God.

JOHN 4:24 , “God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in

spirit and in truth.

MATT. 6:63, “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the

words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”

The Holy Spirit is described as being like “living water,” that nourishes the roots

of our souls.

JOHN 4:10,13,14, “…If thou knewest the gift of God…thou wouldest have asked

of Him, and He would have given thee living water.

Whosoever drinketh of the water that I give him shall never thirst; but the water

that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting

life.”

JOHN 7:37 ,38, “…If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.

He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow

rivers of living water.”

The Holy Spirit is the Living Water. It flows through the Living Word. The Holy Spirit is the river of life. It is pure power. The living river of life reflects the sacred Light of God, wherever it freely flows, into this world and into every living being in it.

Faith in God is believing in His sacred Word. True believing is totally accepting the Words as truth, without any doubt. He does answer every prayer. The only limit on His ability to answer our prayers is in the power of our own faith to believe that He will keep His promises.

MATT. 9:28 ,29, “…Believe ye that I am able to do this?

…According to your faith be it unto you.”

MATT. 17:20 , “…If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing

shall be impossible to you.”

MATT. 21:22 , “…all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, BELIEVING,

Ye shall receive.”

JOHN 14:12-14, “…He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do

also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father,

And whatsoever ye shall ask IN MY NAME, that will I do, that the Father

may be glorified in the Son.

If ye shall ask any thing IN MY NAME, I will do it.”

This is close to being a “magic spell.” In His name, ask, believing; then see it happen.

The power of God is available to every faithful believer from deep within himself. The act of believing is the faith-activated trigger mechanism. Anything is possible, if you simply ask Him and believe that the answer is on its way. His power extends over all creation.

MATT. 28:18, Jesus said, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

JOHN 17:2, “…thou hast given Him power over all flesh…”

LUKE 10:22, “All things are delivered to me of my Father…”

His power becomes our power, as well, when we become His faithful servants.

ACTS 1:5, 8, “…ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.”

“…ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and ye

shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem , and in all Judea, and in Samaria ,

and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

We will receive the power that can transform all that plagues mankind. If we really believe in His promise, then our only limitations will be the depth and breadth of our own imaginations! We will set our minds upon solving the unsolvable. We will reach beyond the limitations of science. We will at last understand the true nature of energy, as expressed in Einstein’s formula (E=mc2), is an explanation of how the living energy of God is translated directly into matter. We will reach beyond the limits of human government, as the King takes His throne over all mankind. We will reach beyond the limits of diplomacy, when the “lion lies down with the lamb,” and mankind embraces a new docile nature, making possible the prophecy, “and a little child shall lead them.”

peter.chamberlin@hotmail.com