The Sarabite: Towards an Aesthetic Christianity

There is a continuous attraction, beginning with God, going to the world, and ending at last with God, an attraction which returns to the same place where it began as though in a kind of circle. -Marsilio Ficino

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

On the Muslim riots

The Christian response to the worldwide violence over the cartoons criticizing the "prophet" Mohammed could range from outrage at such backward medieval thinking to a secret envy that some could be so firm in their beliefs as to strike out so severely. I think that I would have the temptation to the latter, though I think I am beginning to know better.
While indifference toward the most fundamental ideas of our Faith and the potential future hegemony of Islam in Europe are grave problems, we Christians cannot repond by turning our beliefs into a system of hostile polemic. For one thing, this simply could not work; the balance of forces within the ruins of Christendom simply cannot pose a threat to any ideology opposing us. On the other hand, such a polarization cannot help but weaken the Christian message itself. Sacrificing repentance and mercy on the altar of a Christendom that must rise again can only lead to a trial run of the time of the anti-Christ.
One of the Beatitudes is NOT:"Persecute those who persecute you." That is why such cowardly defenses of the Church by such institutions as the Catholic League and the National Conference of Bishops in the U.S. often lead me to a loss of words. We are supposed to be the light of the world, which means that we should know better. If those in darkness point out the darkness that has invaded this beakon of light, they are only doing us a favor. The Church in the end has no need of defenders. True, great polemicists have arisen in the past to defend the truths of the Church. The greatest defense of the Church, however, is to bear persecution with rejoicing, just as Our Lord said.
So when the "liberal" press criticizes Christianity even to the point of blasphemy, our first thought should be that Christ not only died for them, but that Christ died especially for them. Our response should be to manifest this love of our enemies in the world. Anything else would be a fatal compromise.


At 5:17 PM, Blogger Edward Vasquez said...

Islam a threat? Yes, I am resorting to Spart polemics. How are these desperately poor people a threat to nuclear power welding nations. This is a clear provocation by Western Europe to dehumanize the Muslims in order to make them targets for Christian armies.
These Danish Cartoons were nothing more than racist and the product of hundreds of years of white man's burden ideology. The problems of Europe do not lie in some crisis of the take-over of Europe by the Muslims. It is the capitalist system itself, and like the Western tradition has down since the time of the Crusades is to blame the other, first it was the Jew now it is the Muslim. The Muslim in France and throughout Europe is the black man of Europe. Yes, there are some idiot fundamentalists that are a product of the West (see the Afghan war and the Isreali funding of Hamas). Islam is not feudal it is pre-capitalist; read the Q'uran and you will see how they defend private property.
At least sometimes the Muslims can put on a good show like the burning of embassies. But this is only show, we can thank the CIA for doing a good job in crushing leftist movements in the Middle-East. They are tribal and we can see this with the compliant attitude in the Arab street toward the killing of innocent Iraqis and Afghanis. But I think that the recent riots are a misguided discharge of a sense of hopelessness expressed. The Arab and Muslim leadership are totally bought into the Imperialist system and the impoverished leaderless masses are lead by fanatics to burn an embassy or two. Why not wage a revolution which redistributes wealth? Why, because bourgeois hegemony has done a real good job in ciphoning off rage into these "jihads"
Don't get me wrong, these cartoons are of racist and I wish oppressed massses could react the same way everytime some imperialist press rage posts something like this. I say let the Muslims take over Europe, Europe needs a little brown and hopefully a socialist revolution. No theology here, just materialism, man.

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