Friday, October 6, 2006
I hope you don't mind if I put this thread on my blog in this reply, so everybody can click the link at the bottom and burn an hour reading John Adams. If you do mind, just drop me a separate line, and I'll remove the post.
To all those Americans who wonder what did the founding fathers say, read the link -- any questions?
I haven't made it through the whole John Adams piece, but I have a feeling that if the founders of this country could see us today, they'd shake their heads in pathos, for more than one reason.
In my "Bible and the Near East" class, I've been having a few nagging questions pop up again and again, and some of them are getting answered.
When did kings begin to appear, and why?
What is the connection between king and God? Clergy and God?
How was Samson able to kill 1000+ people with a the jawbone of a donkey?
I was talking to a fellow seminarian the other day, and he told me for the second time (surprisingly, it had dropped off my radar the first time, so I'm lucky he brought it up again) about what Tibetan Buddhism regards as the greatest sin:
The greatest sin is to place oneself as an intermediary between the worshipper and the Divine/God. And here I am looking to be a minister -- I knew it'd be a balancing act. I still think ministers have an important role, but need to be keenly aware of the potential for spiritual abuse. No wonder so many have bad feelings about religion.
Me, I'm just getting all the angels I can round up into a martini shaker and adding an olive to whatever comes out.
okay back to the books....
On 06/10/06, E <e> wrote:
> they even persuaded mankind to believe, faithfully and undoubtingly, that
> God Almighty had entrusted them with the keys of heaven, whose gates they
> might open and close at pleasure; with a power of dispensation over all the
> rules and obligations of morality; with authority to license all sorts of
> sins and crimes; with a power of deposing princes and absolving subjects
> from allegiance; with a power of procuring or withholding the rain of heaven
> and the beams of the sun; with the management of earthquakes, pestilence,
> and famine; nay, with the mysterious, awful, incomprehensible power of
> creating out of bread and wine the flesh and blood of God himself. All these
> opinions they were enabled to spread and rivet among the people by reducing
> their minds to a state of sordid ignorance and staring timidity, and by
> infusing into them a religious horror of letters and knowledge. Thus was
> human nature chained fast for ages in a cruel, shameful, and deplorable
> servitude to him, and his subordinate tyrants, who, it was foretold, would
> exalt himself above all that was called God, and that was worshipped.
agape to everyone,
Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
- Martin Luther King Jr.
If men were angels, no government would be necessary.
- James Madison
Ridin' the range once more,
Totin' my old .44.
Where you sleep out every night,
And the only law is right.
Back in the saddle again.
We should be taught not to wait for inspiration to start a thing. Action always generates inspiration. Inspiration seldom generates action.
- Frank Tibolt