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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-10-10 03:30 PM
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For OpEdNews: Carolyn Baker - Writer

Western civilization has taught us many things including how not to look at the larger picture of any issue and keep separate, myriad dots that beg to be connected. Mainstream and even alternative media is replete with myopic statements like "Should the pope resign? Should there be a formal investigation by the Vatican of the global epidemic of priest abuse of children? What did Benedict know and when did he know it?"

A fundamental lack of historical perspective and an inability to place the sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy in the context of the inexorable collapse of industrial civilization leaves us asking meaningless and absurd questions. Therefore, if we are going to make sense of this latest crime against humanity perpetrated by organized religion, it is crucial that we explore both these issues.

Historical and Current Perspectives

First, even a cursory understanding of church history provides numerous clues regarding the inevitable outcome of the initial agenda of early church fathers. Of course the word fathers signals the birth of patriarchal religion in the West which even beyond male domination is synonymous with a way of life based on power and control. Shortly after the birth of Christianity and as the Christian church became an organized system in the Western world, the top priority in its agenda was to exterminate paganism and its indigenous roots and influence. The supreme irony, of course, is that Christianity had deep roots in paganism and could not have congealed into a viable religion without it.

The significance of the disavowal of paganism cannot be overemphasized. The word "pagan" originally meant, country dweller or rustic and implied that the pagan had an intimate relationship with the earth. It was that relationship, more than anything else about paganism, that made it so repugnant to the custodians of official church dogma. Moreover, the earth and the female gender were clearly associated in the minds of early church fathers with irrationality, defilement, chaos, and evil. St. Tertullian wrote to women: "Do you not know that you are each an Eve? With the sentence of god on this sex of your lives in this age, the guilt must of necessity live too. You are the devil's gateway. You are the unsealer of the forbidden tree: You are the first deserter of the divine law. You are she who persuaded him whom the devil was not valiant to attack. You destroyed so easily god's image, man. On account of your desertion even the son of man had to die."
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Richard Steele Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-10-10 03:38 PM
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1. K&R
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HysteryDiagnosis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-10-10 03:56 PM
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2. Without Eve, the devil and god would not have this wonderful
chess game to play with.... :sarcasm:
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-10-10 08:38 PM
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3. Western patriarchy was well-established long before the Christian era, and the
processes of exploitation of less-organized groups by more-organized groups has a similarly ancient pedigree

For about three hundred years, Christianity was simply illegal throughout the Roman world: it had, after all, originated as a splinter sect of the local religion in one of the most troublesome portions of the Roman empire; its primary narrative involved the unpleasant collaboration of the conquering authority and its local lackies in the cruel judicial lynching of an innocent man; and it essentially offered its converts prosecution rather than worldly success

If one does not actually want a theological but only a sociological reading, the context suggests understanding the early movement as a tactic of resistance against the extreme alienation experienced by the underclasses in the terribly unjust classical world. Of course, the sudden acceptability of the movement under Constantine, and the corresponding effort to systematize its significance, must have produced some change in the character of the Christian communities throughout the empire

IIRC, Tertullian has never been canonized, having openly split from the Church early in the third century: it therefore seems careless to title him "Saint" and to cite his views as authoritative on the theology of his time

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PurityOfEssence Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-11-10 12:51 AM
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4. It's just simple accuracy: what IS religion anyway, besides preying on the young and weak?
I'm talking about the big, institutionalized ones; they're largely about having power over other people and having unassailability. It's superiority, wrapped in immunity and granting itself free rein.

None of this should be any shock to anyone. People who like exalted status have a tendency to not play fair.
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