how, in this country, the Bible has so often been manipulated to obscure its potentially emancipatory power
How can someone grow up in this country without knowing where to look up the solution to that illusive paradox? Ask Frederick Douglass. (Duh!!!)
The whole point of USA’s peculiar interpretation of Christianity was to bulwark the peculiar institution of chattel slavery. That’s why Douglass famously clashed with the USA Christian ministers he encountered at British conferences. How come we don’t know that? Nobody even reads Douglass or DuBois, and they’re damn good writers. Look it up: You want to know why USA Chritianity remains bloodstained by human bondage? Look it up, please.
Amen Rev. Theoharis! As an American Jew, I am mortified by the hypocrisy of these so called christians! They are the antithesis of wealthy, white privledge.
American “religious” nationalism and its proponents use religion to cloak their narrow focus and extremism, much of it on repressive social issues that force all others and government to adhere to, and support, their interpretations of religion and its dogma.
We see a similar faux religious cover for Israeli racism and ethnic cleansing of Palestine to become for Jews only; the annexation of the Occupied Territories and East Jerusalem, all in violation of International Humanitarian Law and the Fourth Geneva Conventions (among other illegalities). The destructive mixing of religion, foreign power, and public policy is a threat to our sovereignty and honest independent government
The “separation of powers” as well as "separation between church and state (government) has been made a mockery, subverted over decades, that empowers political extremism with the weight of “religion” to serve an agenda much different - a treasonous subversion of our Republic and government that ignores and diminishes the protections of our great documents, as well as the true central religious teachings they usurp for political ends.
The words of those great documents, regardless the writers place as slave-owners, must be taken into today’s world, and the inspiring words they used and their true meaning made to serve the now; for actual liberty and justice for all and the guarantees of government Of, By and FOR the people made real!
Government is instituted to serve the Common Good, not common greed or narrow extremist views, whether “religious” or political - that is the meaning that includes true separation of powers and separation between church and state.
The two Johns-Calvin and Knox- are plotzing all over themselves at the success of their cruel interpretation of christianity as being a split between the “saved”(the wealthy), and the “damned”(the rest of us poor schmucks). From the Doctrine of Discovery to the present, christianity has been used as a bludgeon by European invaders to justify genocide, slavery(both chattel and wage slavery), and resource exploitation.
The version of this religion as practiced in the USA is one of empire, to dominate the world by forcing others to abandon their ancient cultures to become god-fearing, consuming and consumed capitalist American clones. I’m reminded of the religious wars in Europe, from the forced conversion of the goddess based cultures to the Crusades to the bloody years of various hundred year and thirty year wars.
The US waged wars of empire to obtain land and resources without too much religion buried in the jingoism. But after WW2, Billy Graham and his ilk became the camel’s nose, becoming the “Pastor of America” with free access to the halls of power, including the White House. That is when the National Day of Prayer was established, when “under god” and “in god we trust” were added to the Pledge of Allegiance and on our money.
Now the camel has made his home and brought in all of his relatives to live in the halls of government at all levels of government. Me, I want true diversity-atheists, agnostics, secular humanists, Wiccans, Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Native American religions-all represented. In place of just “in god we trust, add Allah, Brahma, Wakantanka, the Goddess, Buddha,” and in “under god, add the same list.” Better yet, just forget "God’ and use “The Almighty Dollar”.
“If America is still worth saving, ….”
Voters need to be made aware that THIS is the question we are confronting - THIS is what we have come to.
America now follows the Gospel of Prosperity. That gospel clearly states that Jesus didn’t want us to be good people. He wanted us to be rich people, and therefore anyone that isn’t rich is a lazy sinner.
Remember my fellow Americans, God hates sinners, abortion doctors, Jews, and anybody that doesn’t pay their bills.
While i usually accept the slogan “banish gods from the sky and capitalists from the earth”, there can be a case made for the “socialism” of the early Jesus followers, that the world will crucify its saviors and crown its satans.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu : “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
“They shall build houses and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards and eat fruit of them. They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat.” — Isaiah 65:21
“Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet; and distribution was made to each as any had need.” - Acts 4: 32-36
“The use of all things that are found in this world ought to be common to all men. Only the most manifest iniquity makes one say to the other, ‘This belongs to me, that to you’. Hence the origin of contention among men.” – St. Clement.
“What thing do you call ‘yours’? What thing are you able to say is yours? From whom have you received it? You speak and act like one who upon an occasion going early to the theatre, and possessing himself without obstacle of the seats destined for the remainder of the public, pretends to oppose their entrance in due time, and to prohibit them seating themselves, arrogating to his own sole use property that is really destined to common use. And it is precisely in this manner act the rich”. – St. Basil the Great.
“Who is the covetous man? One for whom plenty is not enough. Who is the defrauder? One who takes away what belongs to everyone. And are not you covetous, are you not a defrauder, when you keep for private use what you were given for distribution? When some one strips a man of his clothes we call him a thief. And one who might clothe the naked and does not—should not he be given the same name? The bread in your hoard belongs to the hungry; the cloak in your wardrobe belongs to the naked; the shoes you let rot belong to the barefoot; the money in your vaults belongs to the destitute. All you might help and do not—to all these you are doing wrong” - Basil of Caesarea (c. 330–379), the Father of the Eastern monks who became Bishop of Caesarea
Epistle of James tells you, “Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up for treasure for the last days. Behold, the wages of the labourers who mowed your fields, which you have kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter”
“Therefore if one wishes to make himself the master of every wealth, to possess it and to exclude his brothers even to the third or fourth part (generation), such a wretch is no more a brother but an inhuman tyrant, a cruel barbarian, or rather a ferocious beast of which the mouth is always open to devour for his personal use the food of the other companions.” – St. Gregory. Nic.
“Nature furnishes its wealth to all men in common. God beneficently has created all things that their enjoyment be common to all living beings, and that the earth become the common possession of all. It is Nature itself that has given birth to the right of the community, whilst it is only unjust usurpation that has created the right of private poverty.” – St. Ambrose.
“The earth of which they are born is common to all, and therefore the fruit that the earth brings forth belongs without distinction to all”– St. Gregory the Great.
“The rich man is a thief”. – St. Chrysostom.
Certain aspects of religion are conveniently forgotten by the right-wing
I so wish Jesus would return just to see how he would deal with the evangelicals and their crimes.
Whenever someone says to me “I’m a Christian” I always ask “Real or Fake?” LOL you’d be amazed at some of the looks I get. I go to explain the difference as I see it. A real Christain believes in forgiveness, kindness, disdain for the rich and empathy for the poor with a willingness to help those in need not condemn them for failures in life. A fake Christian babbles on about personal responsibility, the end times, the rapture and how Israel can do no wrong.
These are not Christians, they are fascists, and should destroyed.
It’s all bollocks because life is never in doubt , god couldn’t care if you lived or died because the out come of life is never in doubt.
Now how you live is up to us , we make real what we believe .
As a boy my church’s pulpit had the letters OTHERS on the front. Such a simple word, (I tried to find some Greek phrase that was spiritual) but as a grew up and we had moved away, I came to appreciate that that word Others, was the defining attitude of their mission and ministry. People were welcomed, the Sunday School bus, went to neighborhoods where most of us didn’t live, and the message we shared was good news. Today many hae dropped the (s), and we look outside and see other - Race/nationality/sexual orientation/religion/economic group - and the other is feared, kept out, and regulated to control them. The old prophets message was Justice and Mercy, in our updated version we have transformed it, into something to serve our own interests. Law and Order - this bastardization of a Biblical concept has left much of the church without good news to share, we no longer offer good news, but seek to legislate morality and force-ably control any efforts people make for acceptance and equality. Finally, the wealthiest generation of “Christians” (white evangelicals) to ever live, we are structured in full selfish protection mode. Rather than share our blessings we fear we are losing our privileged status, and that fear leads to distrust of anyone outside the group. Jesus said perfect love would drive out our fear - funny, but it seems for much of the church, uncontrolled fear, also casts out our love, and leaves us simply hollow shells of any biblical picture of the church.
“So-called christians” is right, 'Bubby. It’s a noun that does not deserve to be capitalized, and should always be surrounded with “scare quotes” to emphasize the hypocrisy of its adherents. They are NOT the “antithesis” of
white privilege, however, but rather the “eee-pitomization” thereof.
The main point of organized religion, throughout history, has been to support the Powers That Be and to cement
their control over “the deplorables”.
“Good Folks will do Good, and Evil Folks will do Evil. But for Good Folks to do Evil, That Takes Religion.”
We really need to end the tax free status of all religious organizations.
In Jesus’ name
Never in his words
This is all happening at a time of rapid decline in adherence to Christianity in the US.
The high correlation of poverty with religiosity in the US is replicated throughout the world.
This collage calls out for posting to U. of Tube or VEVO with an aural collage accompaniment of the written quotes. AMPLIFICATION & REPETITION as Fast Eddie Bernays and Wally The Lip Lippman used to say…and as Van Morrison loves to sing when raving on John Donne or other muses…
Mitch Ritter\Paradigm Sifters, Code Shifters and Atonement Seekers
Lay-Low Studios, Ore-Wa
Media Discussion List and Looksee
Rev. Please keep the concepts clear so thinking isn’t
more muddled: It’s religious nationalism, like Nazism.
Nation-states for the Christian message are: "like a
drop from a bucket (Isaiah 40:15).
Christian ideology is expressed in religious socialism;
a movement in the U.S. espoused by Paul Tillich.
Christ & Moses back in the 60’s did stop in to visit at a reformed Jewish Episcopal wannabe ‘Temple’ and the next day at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
Lenny Bruce shared the scenes from the stage of Carnegie Hall at his Midnight Blizzard Concert. I’m a Hebe, yet this was formative in my yoot when an older hipster gave me some Lenny Bruce records. Up until then I thought Lenny Bruce’s material was taboo cuz of bad words. Took time to learn his social satire was too thoughtful (and reverent in the best ways about the core muses of major faiths) to be allowed into mainstream U.S. culture.
Check it out…this whole concert was a one-off and Lenny almost didn’t get into NYC for his big break cuz he was gigging in Florida and flights into NYC were canceled once the snow started…He sure had a captive audience that night as the snow didn’t stop for days…
Mitch Ritter\Paradigm Sifters, Code Shifters and Atonement Seekers
Lay-Low Studios, Ore-Wa
Media Discussion List and Looksee