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The Spiritual Left is Our Best Hope

charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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10/30/2010 5:40:39 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Today, sadly, it's the religious right, the fascist fundamentalists who are out there politically "witnessing" to their faith and boldly getting in the face of society on a variety of issues. It hasn't always been this way, no, religion isn't always a reactionary force for bigotry and the status quo. There've been times throughout history when religion has instead given strength to revolutionary movements for social progress and justice. For example, during the Civil Rights Movement in the United States it was clergymen such as Martin Luther King who provided leadership and inspiration, and they did so out of their spiritually-grounded sense of justice.

But we live in a different day and age, with a different climate of attitudes, beliefs, and politics. The fact that the US has had a couple of Democrats in the Oval Office notwithstanding, since the Regan era the conservatives and the evangelical extremists who've infected the Republican Party with their ultrazealousness have been and remain in the catbird seat of American political life. As a result the impression that perhaps most people today have of religion and its adherents is unflattering. The popular image of religious folks held by non-religious people is that of socially conservative, rigidly traditional, self-righteous, judgy, and intolerant dogmatists.

Overcoming this unbeautiful image will take time and hard work, but religion is not inherently an uptight and cruel mind-set and when the public is reminded of this they'll eventually come around to a more positive opinion of those of us who practice a spiritual worldview. This is why it's so essential for religious men and women of the socially progressive, flexible, non-judgmental, and accepting variety to speak up and act up more against the holy rollers of hate who anchor their mean-spirited attitudes in their medieval theology. We need to show by our words and political stances and deeds that not all religionists are Pat Robertsons and Glenn Becks. That the born-again likes of George Bush and Mike Huckabee most certainly do not represent all people who are both politically involved and followers of a spiritual path.

That the public comes to know that religion can be a source of positive energy in politics is important not merely for the redemption of the image of theists, it's crucial for the socio-economic and ecological salvation of our society.

The hallelujah hard-liners of the right-wing are God-bent on policies that are taking us collectively in the direction of an ironically unspiritual and apocalyptic future. If the pious private-enterprisers of the GOP have their druthers we'll end up with a global economic system that divides humanity into billionaires and peons, with no other classes in between. If these Bible-thumping friends of big business continue to carry the day our semblance of a democracy will completely give way to a full-blown corporatocracy. And that corporatocracy will continue to irresponsibly practice godless capitalism until the worst case scenario of global warming is upon us and mankind finds itself facing hell on Earth.

So no, it's not hyperbole to say that it's imperative that the spiritual left begin to steal some of the thunder of the religious right. And no, secularism isn't a safer and saner alternative to mixing religion and politics. If you think that the Inquisition and the Crusades discredit religion and its ability to progressively guide public policy, well, then all the off-the-scale murder and mayhem motivated by the materialistic worldviews of the twentieth century should completely put to shame the idea that we can count on the separation of church and state, on secular politics as usual to save us from our doom.

Yes, in the course of a single century, the 20th, irreligious leaders and political systems caused more loss of human life than all the witch hunters, jihadists, and other blood-shedding believers in all of recorded history. Of the estimated 284,638,000 people killed in man's history 151,491,000 were killed in just the last century, despite the fact that it was the most rational and secular of centuries. Well, if you doubt these figures simply calculate the enormous number of humans whose lives were cut short by the greed of capitalism, tally the death toll of Stalin and Mao, add up the innocent victims of the Nazis, and then lump the number you get together with the millions who died in all the immoral wars fought by Western and totalitarian powers and you get a number that well exceeds the body count of religion.

And no, secular governments haven't racked up higher kill rates merely because modern technology makes it easier to perpetrate mass slaughter. People with no sense of the sacred, and of the sanctity of life seem to be naturally more merciless, destructive, and kill-crazy. Secular ideologies, such as capitalism, are simply devoid of the values that humanize us. People raised on the anti-values of morally bankrupt capitalism often have little concept of why they should trouble themselves to show compassion to their neighbor, let alone an enemy. And the same holds true for indoctrinees of the other isms. For this reason secularism is not going to rescue us from the terror of history and create a "kinder and gentler" tomorrow.

If we're to have any realistic hope of evolving a more livable, loving, equitable, just, and all-around ethically noble society we definitely need to rediscover the spiritual dimension of life, and the religious feeling for the brighter side of our human nature. We therefore need to take religion back from the fundamentalists and sanctimonious conservatives, to once again show that people don't have to choose between religious rightists and godless liberals, that there is a spiritual left with an alternative take on how to solve our world's problems and build a united and sustainable global village. In other words, it's high time for the religious left to stand up and make itself count.

http://www.spiritualsolutionsnow.com...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
J.Kenyon
Posts: 4,194
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10/30/2010 6:21:58 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Lol, you remind me of Polonius from Hamlet. Get over yourself, dude. You are a terrible writer; your thesaurus addiction doesn't make you seem eloquent, it makes you sound retarded. Your ideas are unoriginal. Nobody here is going to join your website. Now GTFO.
Alex
Posts: 2,058
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10/30/2010 7:31:52 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 10/30/2010 6:21:58 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
Lol, you remind me of Polonius from Hamlet. Get over yourself, dude. You are a terrible writer; your thesaurus addiction doesn't make you seem eloquent, it makes you sound retarded. Your ideas are unoriginal. Nobody here is going to join your website. Now GTFO.

THis.
Why kill people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong?
innomen
Posts: 10,052
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10/31/2010 10:03:48 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 10/30/2010 6:21:58 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
Lol, you remind me of Polonius from Hamlet. Get over yourself, dude. You are a terrible writer; your thesaurus addiction doesn't make you seem eloquent, it makes you sound retarded. Your ideas are unoriginal. Nobody here is going to join your website. Now GTFO.

Yes.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/6/2010 12:54:11 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 10/30/2010 6:21:58 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
Lol, you remind me of Polonius from Hamlet. Get over yourself, dude. You are a terrible writer; your thesaurus addiction doesn't make you seem eloquent, it makes you sound retarded. Your ideas are unoriginal. Nobody here is going to join your website. Now GTFO.

When people resort to personal attacks it always betrays a poverty of good arguments against the position they disagree with. Those who can do meet their opponents point of view head on and refute it, those who can't make cutting cracks about his writing and erroneously speculate that his vocabulary comes from a thesaurus. BTW, your use of the word "retarded" is immature and insensitive to clinically retarded individuals. Perhaps you're the one who should avail himself of a thesaurus rather than using such mean-spirited language that's hurtful to the mentally disabled. As for the vulgar acronym you close with, it might have been emotionally satisfying to use but it doesn't make for a very clever parting shot.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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11/6/2010 12:55:37 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 10/30/2010 6:23:32 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
Also, I reported you for spamming and I encourage others to do the same.

That was uncalled for.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/6/2010 1:03:49 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 10/30/2010 6:23:32 PM, J.Kenyon wrote:
Also, I reported you for spamming and I encourage others to do the same.

Still at it with the hostility I see. Reporting me for spamming wasn't exactly good sportsmanship on your part. Nor should the charge stick, since I clearly have been participatory at this site. You may not like my ideas, writing style, or verbosity, but you can't say that I have just deposited spam and run away. No, to call me a spammer and to try to have me banned is just a weak move. Sorry if I'm too left-wing for you but if I'm so darn annoying to you there are plenty of other posters at this site to read and interact with. You might want to reflect on where your animus really comes from.

Oops, is "animus" one of those words that must come from a thesaurus? Well, not necessarily, not if you're a bookworm, we bookworms pick up a word here and there. But if you enjoy taking shots so much you're welcome to keep 'um coming. However a reply that deals with the topic of my threads would be more interesting to everyone.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.