Mahatmama

ever fall in love with someone you shouldn't fall in love with?

4.29.2003

As of 3:37 pm, my life is such:

I volunteered all day at the Nashville Peace and Justice Center.
I am downtown Nashville preparing myself for the supreme spectacle which I am going to witness tonight: Bob Dylan.
I am having no luck finding a cloud in the sky.

That's all.

4.27.2003

A few notes on pacifism for all you Christians: Although the idea of Christianity and peace colliding might seem far-fetched considering our current White House regime, I believe that the character of Jesus shows us that only love can conquer hate. People are constantly using the fact that war has existed since the beginning of time as a rationalization for all future wars, and, quite honestly, that's a tough fact to ignore. It is true that God commissioned men to kill by the thousands in His name, and took great delight in the destruction of these immoral societies. But when looking at Jesus, God's perfect example unto us, we find little in the way of George W. Bush and much in the way of Mahatma Gandhi, and without contradiction of Old Testament Scripture:

"You have learned that our forefathers were told... But what I tell you is this." - Matthew 5:21

Such is the structure of the rest of the chapter. Now, from the classical Protestant point of view, this is viewed as a rejection of the Old Testament in favor of a radically different set of demands - the Old Testament permitted hatred of enemies, but Jesus demands that we love them. On the contrary, we should view this apparent contradiction not as a renunciation, but a fulfillment. Now, by fulfillment, I don't mean a prophetical fulfillment, but a quite literal filling full, a carrying on to full accomplishment of the intent of the earlier moral guides. Hence, love your enemies as a crucial next step up the ladder of our spiritual apocalypse.

Finally, a few questions to ask yourself for those who support war:

1. What do I communicate to a man about the love of God by being willing to consider him an enemy?
2. What do I say about personal responsibility by agreeing to consider him my enemy when it is only the hazard of birth that causes us to live under different flags?
3. What do I say about forgiveness if I punish him for the sins of his rulers?
4. How is it reconcilable with the gospel - good news - for the last word in my estimate of any man to be that, in a case of extreme conflict, it could be my duty to sacrifice his life for the sake of my nation, my security, or the political order which I prefer?

The mountaintop awaits us all; Let's not reach the top only to find that our walking stick is a rifle.

4.26.2003

and in response to "is it possible to have too much faith?"
well. it might be kind of messy to have so much faith that can move an entire mountain range... i think that just a mere mountain being moved is one thing... depending on the size of the mountain, because then it may possibly alter weather systems and then ecosystems, and that could be quite a mess... but im not sure if that would be too much faith...
and i have had my major bout of literalness (is that a word?) for the day
*sigh*

i remember when the gulf war was going on and that one of my dad's good friends was over there... something to do with repairing equipment and vehicles and the such... and some time after he came back there was all of the hype about the gulf war syndrome and how concerned we were for him (never gave another thought to those who lived where the "syndrome" came from though)... exactly what it was due to, i had no clue. i thought it was some sort of virus that americans were not immune to but for some reason those that were middle-eastern were, or maybe it was like someone went to some place where malaria was quite rampant and they had not gotten their shot before they left...
anyway
this lovely article seems to put it *somewhat* into perspective for me... and it connected how terribly important environmental issues should be taken in situations like war since we have become all high-tech... probably TOO high-tech for our own good according to the outcomes of so many mistakes we have made... so many mistakes that just happen to not be made as well-known as how brad pitt and jennifer aniston's marriage is holding out...

just because a big scary bomb has not went off does not mean we should not be at least aware of the existence of chemicals and the such where were are living right now...

i am amazed at the... "creativity"(?) of protesters...
weren't there times when prophets were lead to such "extreme" measures by God to prove a point to others?
it grosses me out when i find that i am one of the people who is too comfortable to even contemplate a need for change...

I've decided that I'm going to do battle for my philosophy. You ought to believe something in life, believe that thing so fervently that you will stand up with it till the end of your days. I cannot make myself believe that God wants me to hate. I'm tired of violence. And I'm not going to let my oppressor dictate to me what method I must use. We have a power, power that can't be found in Molotov cocktails, but we do have a power. Power that cannot be found in bullets and guns, but we have a power. It is a power as old as the insights of Jesus of Nazareth and as modern as the techniques of Mahatma Gandhi.

If humanity is to progress, Gandhi is inescapable. He lived, thought, and acted, inspired by the vision of humanity evolving toward a world of peace and harmony. We may ignore him at our own risk.

I am convinced that if we succumb to the temptation to use violence in our struggle for freedom, unborn generations will be the recipients of a long and desolate night of bitterness, and our chief legacy to them will be a neverending reign of chaos.

4.25.2003

Why is there an ever-darker cloud gathering over the heads of dissenters? Is dissent not the clearest sign of growth? One can never truly believe in anything without thorough examination and testing of this subject. Without such examination existing as a necessity, of what use would any of our senses hold? But in using our senses, we have learned that the unlearnable does exist, and, in the words of Flannery O'Connor, we must "know that we cannot know." So where is the line drawn with religion? Certainly an issue of such importance requires extreme care. When does healthy dissent cross the line into the realm of redundant questioning, even blasphemy? When does blind faith bleed into the realm of self-destructive ignorance? Is it possible to have too much faith?

Recommended reading for the week:

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, by James Joyce
The Souls of Black Folk, by W.E.B. DuBois
The Society of the Spectacle, by Guy Debord

Oh yeah, welcome all.