By Thomas Block
This unsettling ebook experiences particular situations of “holy conflict” as proposed within the holy books of the main religion traditions, and illustrates how bellicose, war-like language is used to provide an explanation for the non secular quest. the writer proposes that this intermingling of struggle and spirituality prepares the inhabitants for the arrival of warfare. struggle as non secular perform appears to be like inevitable, because of this religio-violent schooling that is woven via all religion traditions. The institutional mixing of the sacred and human aggression seem to be basic to human society. the second one component of the ebook particularizes this dynamic inside our modern, American social and political milieu. It concentrates at the political language and speeches of yank politicians for the reason that 2002, following the run-up to the Iraq battle and its continuation over the last decade, exhibiting precisely how this mystical/war conflation permeates American society. This publication has huge power readership, together with lecturers and lay readers concerned about the fields of struggle, political technological know-how, peace and clash solution, faith, spirituality and normal social background. scholars from West aspect to St. John’s of Annapolis will locate it difficult and informative, probably altering their perception of warfare, faith and human society
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Extra resources for A fatal addiction : war in the name of God
Once Zeus had come of age, he led the gods in war against the Titans: sky, earth, sea and underworld were all convulsed in battle, but Zeus emerged victorious. 100 He was hardly the only war-like figure in the Greek pantheon. The ideal of temporal, human war became attached to a specific god, Ares, whose aggression was considered sacred. What’s more, violence in war led to the “altered states of the battlefield,”101 a concept which still in35 A Fatal Addiction: War in the Name of God forms the contemporary warrior’s mythical love of war.
No doubt, there is much good being done within faith traditions. ” Brian Daizen Victoria captured this dynamic in his important work Zen at War: Apologists for the faiths usually minimize the distress that can come with religion or that religion can produce. They want religion to be nothing but good news. You will not read about the destructive element in religions in the advertisements for the church of your choice. Yet . . 36 Most religious narratives are steeped in the imagery of combat, and political and even religious leaders use religion to provide justification for bellicose acts.
16 Chapter One: War Some time later, Christianity claimed God’s promise (through Jesus) and 600 years after that, Muhammad revealed that both Judaism and Christianity had forfeited their right to the Covenant, and claimed the mantle of God. “The tendency to identify a particular people with the chosen or elect of God is endemic in the monotheistic religions . . The combination of ‘absolute truth’ with the self-identification of a group as the chosen people . . ”42 Even many non-Abrahamic faiths believe that if their God is not believed by all, then at the very least all others are in error, while in the worst (and often more normal) case, the non-believers must be eradicated so as to “prove” that theirs is the one and true God.