Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Right- Wing Politics

Religious zealots believe that liberal Democrats have strayed too far from God, while secular liberals fear that religious zealots in the White House, Congress and Supreme Court have undermined our secularist Constitution.

In “The Left Hand Of God” Rabbi Rabbi Michael Lerner wrote: “unfortunately, the political and religious right has blamed selfishness and materialism on liberals of our society."  In Europe, the political right used to blame selfishness and materialism on the Jews.  In America, they now blame gays and lesbians, feminists and secular liberals.

Rabbi Lerner understood that selfishness and materialism are deeply rooted in the ethic of capitalism, and all religious and spiritual traditions have a common wisdom that love, caring, kindness and generosity can counter selfishness and materialism.

In “Our Endangered Values” President Carter explained that the Bush administration made a radical break from the basic values of equality, opportunity and justice, which past presidents embraced as core governing principles.  Those core governing principles have been replaced with rigid fundamentalism, which disregards the truth, demonstrates contempt for people that disagree, and repudiates basic human rights.

In “Called to Question” Sister Joan Chittister asks: “Do we want the religion of the Crusades and the Inquisition and the witch burnings and segregation and slavery, the oppression of women and Puritanism?”  

Sister Chittister pointed out that the religious right deletes some of the commandments, while accepting corporate and political greed.  They sit by and say nothing about a doctrine of preemptive war.  Either the religious right considers life is of value or it’s not of value.

The political right has succeeded in convincing people that religion only means right-wing politics.  They focus on divisive issue, like abortion, stem cell research, and homosexuality, and forget that the Bible calls for a redistribution of wealth to the people in the society.


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