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War Is Sporty    To Be A Saint    Abraham Joshua Heschel    Faith&Reason    Beliefs: ‘Spiritual Realities' in Service of Science and Vice Versa    Faith, Reason, God and Other Imponderables    Scientists Speak Up on Mix of God and Science    A Free-for-All on Science and Religion    Beliefs: Books on Atheism Are Raising Hackles in Unlikely Places    New Journey    Teachers Matter    An Ancient Paradox, Julie Galambush's view    Evangelism    Remarks at the Holocaust Remembrance Service    New Ideas for a Small Planet    A Catalonian Revival    The University of Adversity    Fighting Poverty With $2-a-Day Jobs    Political voices of religious left    Why Genocide Matters    Evangelism revisited    Making Room for Healing    Communion, by Jean Vanier    Marian Fisher    Present Moment Mindfulness    The God Delusion    Becoming New Now    The Muslim Stereotype    The Devoted Student    Conversion Story    Torture by Worms    Human Nature Redux    Valor and Squalor    Scientist Finds the Beginnings of Morality in Primate Behavior    attitude    Matters of Faith Find a New Prominence on Campus    Planet of the Apes    A ‘Painful Way to Die'    Partnership Of Minds    Palm Beach County's Culture of Corruption    Jews don't need to be redeemed    We'd do well to remember this amazing man    The End of Integration    New Poverty Problem: Immigrant Problem    World Bank and U.N. to Help Poor Nations Recover Stolen Assets    Foundation gets half a million to improve community    Health Care for the Uninsured    Homeless People and Families    The Lord's Place    Scripture    New York Times editorial by Jim Wallis    Childhood Bullying    Donations quickly surpass $287 million    At His Funeral, Brother Roger Has an Ecumenical Dream Fulfilled    Where a Cuddle With Your Baby Requires a Bribe    Homosexuality and the Bible    Who Should Benefit from Rebuilding New Orleans ?    Contributions to Non-Profits by the City of Boca Raton    We Can Become a "Post Contemporary" Church    American debacle, by Zbigniew Brzezinski    Abortion    Daughter, dad win $46 million jackpot    The Cost of Discipleship    Forgetting Reinhold Niebuhr    A Powerful Preacher Who Tries to Deflect Public Acclaim    Frederick B. Williams    Faith-Based Medicine    Physics and the Mind of God    'Covenant' urges blacks to shape their own destiny    The Bulldozer And The Big Tent    Mysticism    ‘Miraculous’ Recovery for Man Who Fell 47 Floors    Pluralism    Truths    Emancipation    media    Together and Different    Human Condition    Truth    On the Peace Born of Faith    loneliness-solitude    Calculating Economics of an Eye for an Eye    indulgence    Best Books    Happiness    Ten Most Important Dates    When Survival Hinged on Team Spirit    In Search Of Dignity    Is is OK to pronunce "asked" as "aksed" ?    George Carlin    Jonathan's web site    Rumi's Studio           • Home Page  • Whats New  • Site Map  • Web Links  • Core Values  • Social Justice Strategy  • Community  • One  • Kindness  • Faith & Reason  • New  • Jon  • Rumi 

Faithful Moderates

A group of people began meeting at St. Gregory's Episcopal Church in May (2005) to discuss Jim Wallis's book "God's Politics". The discussion has led to at least two potentially useful efforts.

The Worst Intentional Man-Created Atrocities of the 20th Century
Which War#DeathsWhen
Congo Free State 7,500,000 1886-1908
First World War (incl. Armenian massacres) 15,000,000 1914-18
Mexican Revolution 1,000,000 1910-20
Russian Civil War 8,800,000 1918-21
China: Warlord & Nationalist Era 4,000,000 1917-37
Spanish Civil War 365,000 1936-39
Second World War (Some overlap w/Stalin. Includes Sino-Japanese War and Holocaust. Doesn't incl. post-war German expulsions) 55,000,000 1937/39-1945
German Expulsions after WW2 2,100,000 1945-47
India-Pakistan Partition 500,000 1947
Chinese Civil War 2,500,000 1945-49
USSR: Stalin's regime (incl. WW2-era atrocities) 20,000,000 1924-53
Korean War 2,800,000 1950-53
First Indochina War 600,000 1945-54
French-Algerian War 675,000 1954-62
Indonesia: Massacre of Communists 450,000 1965-66
Nigeria: Biafran revolt 1,000,000 1967-70
East Pakistan: Massacres 1,250,000 1971
First Sudanese Civil War 500,000 1955-72
2nd Indochina War (incl. Laos & Cambodia) 2,800,000 1960-75
China: Mao Zedong's regime. (incl. famine) 40,000,000 1949-76
Cambodia: Khmer Rouge Regime 1,650,000 1975-79
Iran-Iraq War 1,000,000 1980-88
Afghanistan: Soviet War 1,500,000 1980-89
Ethiopian Civil Wars 1,400,000 1962-92
Mozambique: Civil War 800,000 1976-92
Rwandan Massacres 917,000 1994
Angolan Civil War 600,000 1975-94
Second Sudanese Civil War 1,900,000 1983-(99)
Congolese Civil War 3,300,000 1998-2003
Decline of the Amazonian Indians 500,000 (1900-99)
Somalia: Chaos 350,000 1991-(99)
North Korea: Communist Regime 400,000 1948-(99)
Numbers in the middle column are the sum of battle deaths, civilian casualties of war, democide, famine caused by the economic disruption, etc.
(source: Matthew White)
The last meeting of the summer book discussion group was in mid-August and since then one member (Carl) has continued this journey to explore just what is "outreach" and what can "social justice" mean (revised 3/ 5/16 22:36). This journey is done in a context established in recent years with RaceMatters.org. The hope asserted in "Race Matters.org" is this.
It is possible that, as Huston Smith argues, the next great accomplishments of humankind will be in getting along with each other. Certainly the Civil Rights movement and its aftermath have set the stage for transformational change. Now, after September 11, the New York Times reports that the "the entertainment industry has opted for restraint to avoid accusations of bias and the danger of offending audience sensibilities in an increasingly multiracial America". While mankind may have been more destructive in the past century than in any prior century, humankind also has risen to unprecedented acts of reconciliation. Events in the new South Africa and the apologies of the Pope are examples.

War

Our nation was struck to the core by "911", but if we look in a context outside our nation or outside this decade we confront facts that make "911" pale by comparison. America tragically lost 4000 lives and billions of dollars of property. Since 1994 more than 5 million lives have been lost by war, genocide and oppression in Rwanda, the Sudan, the Congo, and Somalia. If we look a bit further back, we find that 40 million lost their lives during Mao Zedong's regime in China ending in 1976, 20 million lost their lives during Stalin's regime in the USSR ending in 1953, 55 million lost their lives in World War II, and 15 million lost their lives in World War I. (source: Matthew White) Further back, researchers tell us that somewhere between 30 and 60 million Africans were forcibly taken from Africa during slave trade and two-thirds of them died at sea. So, 10 or 20 million Africans became slaves in America of 30-60 million taken from their families and their villages. (Source: www.juneteenth.com/middlep.htm)

We have sometimes intervened. The Berlin airlift was a massively successful effort to protect people blockaded in 1948. But we have done very little to help the people of Darfur (Sudan), Rwanda, and the Congo in recent and current conflicts.

It seems clear that, thinking globally, some men will continue to wreak great hardship on others, and some others will turn their backs.

Bullying

"U.S. researchers who have studied bullying say part of the problem is that such behavior is often accepted, even encouraged by adults. "There's a real value system around [bullying] that basically teaches kids that it's not just okay -- it's more than okay," said Howard Spivak, a professor of pediatrics and community health at Tufts University in Massachusetts. "Social acceptability of bullying is a consequence of many complex things," including adults' approval and the influence of television, video games and movies that "teach them that being mean is not only acceptable, but good," he said.

More than 16 percent of U.S. schoolchildren report having been bullied, according to a 2001 survey of nearly 16,000 students in grades 6 through 10 funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). An estimated quarter to a third of U.S. students are involved in bullying, either as a victim or perpetrator, according to Spivak.

Research has linked bullying with violent and criminal behavior later in life, as well as emotional, psychological and social problems. A federally funded study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine reported in 2004 that bullies and their victims had more health problems and poorer emotional and social adjustment than their peers." (source, Washington Post, 8/23/05, Bully for Them)

The Global War Against the Poor

When Richard Barnet wrote a pamphlet and titled it "The Global War Against the Poor", I said, "Good grief, Richard, you surely need a different title. Who's going to take seriously that there is some sort of conspiracy to keep poor people poor." But he and his publisher ( The Church of the Saviour ) stuck with it, and today (9/1/05) I typed that title into Google and found the concept widely presented.

A New York Times story (8/30/05, by Celia W. Dugger) reports that it is common in India that when you have a baby, in order to see or cuddle the baby, you must pay the attendant $12 if it is a boy or $7 if it is a girl. "The bitter experience of corruption is an everyday trial for millions of poor people across Asia, Africa and Latin America. It is being recognized as a major obstacle to economic development, robbing the impoverished of already measly incomes and corroding the public services they desperately need."

Dr. Barnet's pamphlet makes the case for "The Global War Against the Poor" in many other ways. (available from Carl House)

Babies and Psychopaths

There is nothing more universal in its ability to draw from us our nourishing and protective instincts than the presence of a baby. We respond to the baby's vulnerability and its needs. We are excited by the potential of this baby to grow into a loving and contributing person. But, it is essential that the baby enter into a process of socialization and growth towards emotional maturity and responsibility to realize that potential. A baby that is not given that process will not be able to function in our society and may well become a pyschopath. This socialization process is always flawed. Pain in growing up is common to all of us. So, we all fall short of our possibilities; we are all separated from God by self interest, our ego, our anger, our pain...

"Wise old Jung insists that it is good and salutory - even necessary for growth - to face one's shadow and to confront one's inner demons. No one is exempt. Who is without fears, neuroses, anxieties? There is darkness in all of us. Don't avoid your demons! Go through them. Bring them into the light and face them fairly and squarely. Only then will you be able to handle them.

The mystical life can be described as a journey into the depths of one's being, a journey to the true self and through the true self to God, who is the Center. Down, down I go through alternate layers of light and darkness, meeting all the slimy monsters and frightening demons that inhabit the subliminal world. And if I progress enough, I meet not only my own little monsters. I meet the monsters of the human race. I meet the root causes of war, oppression, torture, hunger, terrorism. I meet hatred, despair, injustice, atheism, darkness. I meet archetypical evil. I meet it in myself.... We are all responsible.

God is present in all these hurts. He is more present in darkness than in light. He is nearer in a time of desolation than in a time of consolation. Stay with the darkness. Go through it. Don't run away. And through all of this you will expand, making you more and more capable of receiving those sublime communications which come from the darkness of God." (from Christian Mysticism Today by Johnston)

I take this as an invitation to me to be part of the human family. I hope I'll overlook or forgive your shortcomings, and that with appropriate apology you'll overlook or forgive mine. As I've been contemplating this, I've imagined how in my lesser self I could be like Pat Robertson. Imagine that I work really hard. Imagine that I really believe in what I'm doing. My passion runs deep and it is for good purposes; and right now I a bit tired and I'm running on empty. I could well urge we take a shortcut that on more consideration I'd realize is not a good idea. So, however you hurt, however angry you are, even if your sin is dreadful, if you meet my better self you will meet someone who, with Grace, will be a healing presence for you. I need to be part of my human family; I need to experience God's presence. I am reminded:

Because They Can

A few years ago a playwright explored this quality of human beings and concluded that men are abusing power because they can. In his modern and artistic way he is making the same statement that early Christian theologians made in articulating the concept of "original sin". This is also why those who wrote our constitution gave importance to the concepts of "balance of power" and "checks and balances" and it is a reason why our nation has been able to evolve over 3 centuries into a reasonably rational and well-governed nation.

Our Conclusion - Our Response

It is hard to conclude that the hope given to us by Huston White will be fully realized in our lifetime or that of our children. But it is inescapable that people of good heart and people of faith must be engaged in protecting those who are vulnerable and in creating opportunity for those who lack opportunity. We cannot change the nature of human beings; we cannot mandate a world that will work right all by itself. Going back to the conservative and liberal radicals that Jim Wallis addresses. Perhaps "progressive religion" embraces the conservative idea that we can't give people things they won't work for while embracing the liberal idea that the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness must exist for all people. This includes safety and reasonable opportunity for education and employment for all. Elizabeth O'Connor has written "if your prayer is not accompanied by caring for the poor, your prayer is an empty prayer". I think Elizabeth's statement applies to both conservative and liberal theology that is authentic to Christ's teaching. The challenge in social justice is to find and develop strategies which have the best chance of moving us towards the Kingdom. Resources will be less than what is needed and must be used judiciously. The greatest asset for social justice is the passion of people who care. One friend whose faith is as authentic as anyone I know said "We need another great man. Maybe we need Jesus to come back now." That sentiment is hard to implement as social policy, but the idea that there is goodness in all of us and that we need to draw forth that goodness is true and can be implemented.

The Kingdom Personality

Goron Cosby offers the hope that "You will personally embody the Kingdom personality described in the Beatitudes, You will be loving, caring, outgoing, reconciling, helping alienated people understand one another. You will be non-competitive, non-violent, and you will be ready to interpret your word of God assumptions if anybody happens to be interested." (from Gordon Cosby's sermon of 8/15/93 entitled Consecrated Strangers )


Home Page 
What's New 
About Us 
Search 
Site Map 
Links to Other Websites 
Core Values 
A Strategy for Social Justice 
Evil from Innocence 
Friendship, Family and Community 
Building Church 
Blazing New Paths, Elizabeth O'Connor 
Becoming the Authentic Church, by Gordon Cosby 
12-Step as Coded Gospel 
Marks of the Liberating Community 
Stages Of Community Making 
The Beloved Community 
Letter From Birmingham Jail 
Faithful Friendship 
Sri Chinmoy, Athletic Spiritual Leader, Dies at 76 
Stories Behind Homelessness 
Joseph's House 
Network of Spiritual Progressives 
Peacemaker 
'T-Byrd' and The Word: It's been a big year for Dr. Terriel Byrd 
Church work transforms Adams-Morgan section of Washington, D.C 
Dorothy Day on love... 
Save the Gnostics 
Send In the Clowns 
Forgiveness 
intimacy 
One 
Little-known faith suffers from Iraq war 
Of Love and Money 
Peace Prize to Pioneer of Loans to Poor No Bank Would Touch 
Let's Start a War, One We Can Win 
No. 1 Book, And If Offers Solutions 
Americans Don't Believe in the American Dream 
The American Dream, or a Nightmare for Black America? 
The Least Among Us 
Reading In Economics 
Global warming could swamp Florida within 50 years, U.N. report suggests 
A War of Narratives 
The Perfect Weapon for the Meanest Wars 
Saudi Warns U.S. Iraq May Face Disintegration 
Waging a War We Could Be Proud Of 
How to Sink America: Why the Debt Crisis is Now the Greatest Feared Threat to the American Republic 
An Evolutionary Theory of Right and Wrong 
Don't ask this general about morality 
Robertson Suggests U.S. Kill Venezuela's Leader 
The Demographics of Charitable Giving 
Military Spending 
U.S. Agency's Slow Pace Endangers Foreign Aid 
No Bad Guys, Only Us 
Like Eating Stone 
kindness 
Quotes 
Henri Nouwen Society 
Claas Quotes 
Quotes for NSPPBC & Let Justice Roll 
Frederick Buechner 
The Culture of Nations 
You Thought It Was Hell? War Is Sporty 
To Be A Saint 
Abraham Joshua Heschel 
Faith&Reason 
Beliefs: ‘Spiritual Realities' in Service of Science and Vice Versa 
Faith, Reason, God and Other Imponderables 
Scientists Speak Up on Mix of God and Science 
A Free-for-All on Science and Religion 
Beliefs: Books on Atheism Are Raising Hackles in Unlikely Places 
New Journey 
Teachers Matter 
An Ancient Paradox, Julie Galambush's view 
Evangelism 
Remarks at the Holocaust Remembrance Service 
New Ideas for a Small Planet 
A Catalonian Revival 
The University of Adversity 
Fighting Poverty With $2-a-Day Jobs 
Political voices of religious left 
Why Genocide Matters 
Evangelism revisited 
Making Room for Healing 
Communion, by Jean Vanier 
Marian Fisher 
Present Moment Mindfulness 
The God Delusion 
Becoming New Now 
The Muslim Stereotype 
The Devoted Student 
Conversion Story 
Torture by Worms 
Human Nature Redux 
Valor and Squalor 
Scientist Finds the Beginnings of Morality in Primate Behavior 
attitude 
Matters of Faith Find a New Prominence on Campus 
Planet of the Apes 
A ‘Painful Way to Die' 
Partnership Of Minds 
Palm Beach County's Culture of Corruption 
Jews don't need to be redeemed 
We'd do well to remember this amazing man 
The End of Integration 
New Poverty Problem: Immigrant Problem 
World Bank and U.N. to Help Poor Nations Recover Stolen Assets 
Foundation gets half a million to improve community 
Health Care for the Uninsured 
Homeless People and Families 
The Lord's Place 
Scripture 
New York Times editorial by Jim Wallis 
Childhood Bullying 
Donations quickly surpass $287 million 
At His Funeral, Brother Roger Has an Ecumenical Dream Fulfilled 
Where a Cuddle With Your Baby Requires a Bribe 
Homosexuality and the Bible 
Who Should Benefit from Rebuilding New Orleans ? 
Contributions to Non-Profits by the City of Boca Raton 
We Can Become a "Post Contemporary" Church 
American debacle, by Zbigniew Brzezinski 
Abortion 
Daughter, dad win $46 million jackpot 
The Cost of Discipleship 
Forgetting Reinhold Niebuhr 
A Powerful Preacher Who Tries to Deflect Public Acclaim 
Frederick B. Williams 
Faith-Based Medicine 
Physics and the Mind of God 
'Covenant' urges blacks to shape their own destiny 
The Bulldozer And The Big Tent 
Mysticism 
‘Miraculous’ Recovery for Man Who Fell 47 Floors 
Pluralism 
Truths 
Emancipation 
media 
Together and Different 
Human Condition 
Truth 
On the Peace Born of Faith 
loneliness-solitude 
Calculating Economics of an Eye for an Eye 
indulgence 
Best Books 
Happiness 
Ten Most Important Dates 
When Survival Hinged on Team Spirit 
In Search Of Dignity 
Is is OK to pronunce "asked" as "aksed" ? 
George Carlin 
Jonathan's web site 
Rumi's Studio 

• Home Page  • Whats New  • Site Map  • Web Links  • Core Values  • Social Justice Strategy  • Community  • One  • Kindness  • Faith & Reason  • New  • Jon  • Rumi 


 What's New   E-Mail   Page Top     HomePage    What's New    About Us    Search    Site Map    Links to Other Websites    Core Values    A Strategy for Social Justice    Evil from Innocence    Friendship, Family and Community    Building Church    Blazing New Paths, Elizabeth O'Connor    Becoming the Authentic Church, by Gordon Cosby    12-Step as Coded Gospel    Marks of the Liberating Community    Stages Of Community Making    The Beloved Community    Letter From Birmingham Jail    Faithful Friendship    Sri Chinmoy, Athletic Spiritual Leader, Dies at 76    Stories Behind Homelessness    Joseph's House    Network of Spiritual Progressives    Peacemaker    'T-Byrd' and The Word: It's been a big year for Dr. Terriel Byrd    Church work transforms Adams-Morgan section of Washington, D.C    Dorothy Day on love...    Save the Gnostics    Send In the Clowns    Forgiveness    intimacy    One    Little-known faith suffers from Iraq war    Of Love and Money    Peace Prize to Pioneer of Loans to Poor No Bank Would Touch    Let's Start a War, One We Can Win    No. 1 Book, And If Offers Solutions    Americans Don't Believe in the American Dream    The American Dream, or a Nightmare for Black America?    The Least Among Us    Reading In Economics    Global warming could swamp Florida within 50 years, U.N. report suggests    A War of Narratives    The Perfect Weapon for the Meanest Wars    Saudi Warns U.S. Iraq May Face Disintegration    Waging a War We Could Be Proud Of    How to Sink America: Why the Debt Crisis is Now the Greatest Feared Threat to the American Republic    An Evolutionary Theory of Right and Wrong    Don't ask this general about morality    Robertson Suggests U.S. Kill Venezuela's Leader    The Demographics of Charitable Giving    Military Spending    U.S. Agency's Slow Pace Endangers Foreign Aid    No Bad Guys, Only Us    Like Eating Stone    kindness    Quotes    Henri Nouwen Society    Claas Quotes    Quotes for NSPPBC & Let Justice Roll    Frederick Buechner    The Culture of Nations    You Thought It Was Hell? War Is Sporty    To Be A Saint    Abraham Joshua Heschel    Faith&Reason    Beliefs: ‘Spiritual Realities' in Service of Science and Vice Versa    Faith, Reason, God and Other Imponderables    Scientists Speak Up on Mix of God and Science    A Free-for-All on Science and Religion    Beliefs: Books on Atheism Are Raising Hackles in Unlikely Places    New Journey    Teachers Matter    An Ancient Paradox, Julie Galambush's view    Evangelism    Remarks at the Holocaust Remembrance Service    New Ideas for a Small Planet    A Catalonian Revival    The University of Adversity    Fighting Poverty With $2-a-Day Jobs    Political voices of religious left    Why Genocide Matters    Evangelism revisited    Making Room for Healing    Communion, by Jean Vanier    Marian Fisher    Present Moment Mindfulness    The God Delusion    Becoming New Now    The Muslim Stereotype    The Devoted Student    Conversion Story    Torture by Worms    Human Nature Redux    Valor and Squalor    Scientist Finds the Beginnings of Morality in Primate Behavior    attitude    Matters of Faith Find a New Prominence on Campus    Planet of the Apes    A ‘Painful Way to Die'    Partnership Of Minds    Palm Beach County's Culture of Corruption    Jews don't need to be redeemed    We'd do well to remember this amazing man    The End of Integration    New Poverty Problem: Immigrant Problem    World Bank and U.N. to Help Poor Nations Recover Stolen Assets    Foundation gets half a million to improve community    Health Care for the Uninsured    Homeless People and Families    The Lord's Place    Scripture    New York Times editorial by Jim Wallis    Childhood Bullying    Donations quickly surpass $287 million    At His Funeral, Brother Roger Has an Ecumenical Dream Fulfilled    Where a Cuddle With Your Baby Requires a Bribe    Homosexuality and the Bible    Who Should Benefit from Rebuilding New Orleans ?    Contributions to Non-Profits by the City of Boca Raton    We Can Become a "Post Contemporary" Church    American debacle, by Zbigniew Brzezinski    Abortion    Daughter, dad win $46 million jackpot    The Cost of Discipleship    Forgetting Reinhold Niebuhr    A Powerful Preacher Who Tries to Deflect Public Acclaim    Frederick B. Williams    Faith-Based Medicine    Physics and the Mind of God    'Covenant' urges blacks to shape their own destiny    The Bulldozer And The Big Tent    Mysticism    ‘Miraculous’ Recovery for Man Who Fell 47 Floors    Pluralism    Truths    Emancipation    media    Together and Different    Human Condition    Truth    On the Peace Born of Faith    loneliness-solitude    Calculating Economics of an Eye for an Eye    indulgence    Best Books    Happiness    Ten Most Important Dates    When Survival Hinged on Team Spirit    In Search Of Dignity    Is is OK to pronunce "asked" as "aksed" ?    George Carlin    Jonathan's web site    Rumi's Studio