Where will you hide your cabbages?

The world is too complicated to fully understand anything. But we must try. I’m a white Christian. I have some concern that my thoughts may be biased. So, I write this with my Muslim friend of 50 years, Bachir, in mind.

Traditional Islam executes homosexuals. Traditional Christians love them, only hate homosexual behavior, and must somehow keep that hate from spilling over to the person. Another third of the story, Secular Progressives, say they love homosexuals, but seem to hate anyone who thinks homosexual behavior may be an error.  Everyone agrees that sex is a very powerful drive, and hazardous.

A Pew study suggests that of 2 billion Muslims, 500 million approve of violence, partly because easy Western sex seduces Muslims, thus threatening Islam. Part of Islam’s defense is to move people to the West, out-populate locals, and dominate by stealth and terror – an ancient ploy everyone’s used. But Radical Islam isn’t about sex or defending Islam. With no gays anywhere, or sexual liberty, or guns, for that matter, Radical Islam would remain. Muhammad – peace be upon him – instructed his followers to MAKE the world submit to Allah. Despite revisionist claims to the contrary, he said to use force, if necessary. Christians once forced conversions, wrongly suggesting that Jesus wanted such raw compliance.

Now, our intense social division signals the world it’s a good time to attack America. We can’t know what to expect from our government, its agents don’t seem to care much for ordinary people. We may have to fend for ourselves, in secret, like the Poles. When Poland was full of Soviet tanks, people had to hide their cabbages from the government. We may have to hide our thoughts.

To offset ubiquitous one-eyed anti-American propaganda, remember that every people in history had slaves; only English-speaking Christians rose to end it. This doesn’t make us better humans, but some honor is due. So, government can ferret out terrorists, take away guns, lock people up for drugs or bad ideas, fine us, hate us, set fire to us, whatever. Life blossoms if we choose to be as kind as we can be to absolutely everyone, including Radical Islamists. As kind as circumstances permit. Is that okay, Bachir?

When Will I Ever Learn

My wife and I came in from the cold last Mother’s Day, attending St. Philips Catholic Church in Stone Lake. We hadn’t attended since my mother passed years ago. Church was changing then. We liked the Latin mass, traditional values, and the old wooden church. But new St. Philip’s is a clean well-lighted place with stained glass from the old church – a fine place to congregate.

I rankle about religion. Nationally, we’ve abandoned our young to vast, super destructive single parent poverty. Churches that once helped families survive, emotionally and physically, are largely ceremonial now, forced aside by government. But huge soul-less bureaucracies do more harm than good. We get dumber and weaker as responsibility for our life is removed from us. Authority over every aspect of life is in government hands now, Caesar’s hands. The international progressive movement is Caesar now. Progressive Republicans and progressive Democrats have propagandized us thoroughly. We’ve been transformed, into serfs, I think.

Of course, Christians needn’t hide in catacombs anymore. We can attend church openly (most places). We must be discreet; can’t discuss tough issues. And for God’s sake, don’t pray where you might be observed. We’ve long been taught to render to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s, and to make a joyful noise unto the Lord. So, maybe we should just abide our demise in good humor – go gentle into that good night.

First, though, hear this about the spiritual baby we’ve thrown out in political bathwater. In his magisterial work, The City of God, St. Augustine (AD 354-430) contrasts the City of God with the City of Man. Augustine saw the Church as the City of God on pilgrimage through this age to the Eternal City, that divine commonwealth ruled by God and the law of love. Augustine writes of the City of God: If we inquire whence it is, God created it; or whence its wisdom, God illumined it; or whence its blessedness, God is its bliss. It has its form by subsisting in Him; its enlightenment by contemplating Him; its joy by abiding in Him. It is; it sees; it loves. In God’s eternity is its life; in God’s truth is its light; in God’s goodness is its joy.

By contrast, the City of Man is the secular order, the earthly city ruled by humans for their own gain using their own rules. Above all, says Augustine, “it is ruled by the lust of rule, the lust for power, advantage and glory.” This lust for domination doesn’t just characterize politics in the City of Man, it characterizes each of us. Libido dominandi is the lust within each of us that plots and strives to have our own way and force others to do as we say. It’s the controlling passion of our fallen nature and, thus, our fallen world.

“When will I ever learn to live in God; when will I ever learn?” Van Morrison.