Religious Right

The Profound Silence

I get a daily email newsletter / update from Dobson’s “Focus on the Family” (“Citizen Link“). As of today, the silence about Pat Robertson’s terrorism-promoting remarks (on Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela, see recent posts) is eloquent.

I guess “moral values” and “family values” do not overlap into issues of economy, political democracy, oil, and international relations.

And apparently they do not apply to prominent spokespersons for the radical right (or “fundamentalist clerics” who have great influence in the government) in this country.

I think they should.

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  • Mr. Bauer,
    You are precisely correct, go to the head of the class, and that is the massive “elephant” in the room of organized religion today. Carl Jung speaks to this issue in his “The Spiritual Problem of Modern Man:”

    “…We used to regard foreigners as political and moral reprobates, but modern man is forced to recognize that morally and politically he is just like everyone else. Whereas formerly, I believed it was my bounden duty to call others to order, I must now admit that I need calling to order myself, and that I would do better to set my own house to rights first….(several pages later)…“It is, however, true that much of the evil in the world comes from the fact that man in general is hopelessly unconscious, and it is also true that with increasing insight we can combat this evil at its source in ourselves, in the same way science enables us to deal effectively with injuries inflicted from without.”

    Psychologically people deal with their own evil by “projecting” it onto others. Our national leaders “project” their own evil onto others most notably in recent time by “WARS.” Nixon’s war on crime, Reagan’s war on drugs, Bush the first had an actual war to deal with, but his son has created a phony war. This is not to deny that evil exists “out there” in the world. But our current president, by not dealing properly with his own evil, as the scriptures call for, has set it loose on the world. The truly courageous and moral person deals with his own evil first, and in that way does not set his personal quantum of evil loose in the world to destroy and harm the innocent. This is what make bush a physical and a moral coward. To the extent you say flee-I say we must come to terms with our own evil because we cannot flee from ourselves.

    To bookaholic: We must deal with both good and evil in equal measure-to deal with good alone creates the elephant in the room.

  • I should know better than to jump into a theological discussion, but I just have to say that I don’t believe in a literal Satan, but if I am wrong and there is one, we are the ones who bring him his morning coffee and remind him to do his exercises and take his vitamins. Maybe we could try doing that type of thing a bit less? But instead, being the flawed critters that we are, we spend too much time having pointless arguments about the unprovable, and focusing on evil instead of good. If we drove our cars the way we live the Christian life, we’d be constantly falling off cliffs and steering into the path of 18-wheelers while patting ourselves on the back for being such good drivers.

  • Mr. Harper, may I briefly interfere …
    I have always deemed the only proper answer to this gnostic question to be “from God, of course – in the last causation!”

    Any flinching from this conclusion must be rejected by refuting the charges of insinuation as being either a false form of piety or a fruit of that misunderstanding which assumes evil is there for understanding (as a basis to do good) or for conceiving (as the cognition which springs from a proper faith). It is there for only thing: flee its lure! – with all your might, mind and will.

  • 16. Barb Says:
    September 4th, 2005 at 8:40 pm

    I’ve been away for a few days, but I am thoroughly confused about exactly what Mr. Harper’s point is. He praises some of us for criticizing the religious right and attacks others of us for the same thing.
    I don’t believe I attacked anyone here. I understand that someone might feel attacked when they maintain a position that has no defense, response or credibility. A specious, or ad hominem position fails on it’s own.

    Later in 16 Barb say:
    I am not going to respond directly to attacks from Mr. Harper or anyone else, and I am going to leave it to anonymous to point out to Mr. Harper that this IS a public forum in which he spoke out . I tried to put the discussion in a biblical context

    As close look at the post to which Barb refers shows that I used the word “forums,” the plural form of the word. I might surprise you when I tell that I read the bible, I have two copies, and am often taken by the richness of the myth it sets forth. The Christian myth has not, by it’s own terms, resolved the question of evil. The Gnostics, two thousand years ago, confronted the Christians with this dilemma: “All things from God; whence evil?”

  • This is anonymous #18 here:

    Barb, I deeply appreciate your loving way with things.

    I should distinguish between 1)the Christian Right, and 2) the leaders of the Christian Right.

    The people who follow the televangelists, in my opinion, are the ones whom we would seek to reach. I prefer to believe that people line up behind bad leaders on account of bad information/instruction. In the US, that’s a whopping good chance – that a person has been raised on television and lacks the wherewithal to think clearly or read with an analytical mind. We, as a people, are “devolvingâ€? in terms of literacy (does this upend Darwin?).

    So my intent is to direct those following bad leaders to information sources which aid them in questioning what they hear. God help us, may love prevail.

    The leaders who are taking a badly educated public captive? Now, why? Not to save them, but to get votes, I fear.

    Asking Pat Robertson to repent for ordering an assassination and not dealing with the rest of him is like saying someone died of a broken leg, and neglecting to mention that they were hit by a truck. The man is off the charts for disobedience to Jesus, or am I wrong?

    We all fall short in many ways, but it’s another level of disobedience, to exalt oneself among the believing community, isn’t it? To take disobedience to the level of one’s own doctrine? Could anyone be inspired to humility by such an example