Thursday, 29 September 2011

Are Evangelical Christians warmongers?

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. (Matthew 5:9)

But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. (Matthew 5:44)

“Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. (Matthew 26:52)

It’s clear from reading the New Testament that Jesus didn’t like war. He advocated nonviolence and showing love to one another, even to enemies. Yet in recent times some of the biggest cheerleaders for war have been Evangelical/Fundamentalist Christians. I find this attitude appalling because it so clearly diverges from the teachings of Christ. Instead of being agents for peace, they often justify wars of aggression.

Chuck Baldwin has been an Evangelical Christian since childhood. He is now a pastor in Pensacola, Florida. He’s written an interesting post on his blog: Are Evangelical Christians Warmongers? He decries the warmongering attitude of many Evangelicals:

So, what has happened to turn the most peace-loving institution the world has ever known (the New Testament church) into the biggest cheerleaders for war? I’m talking about un-provoked, illegal, unconstitutional, unbiblical–even secret–wars of aggression. The biggest cheerleaders for the unprovoked, unconstitutional, pre-emptive attack and invasion of Iraq were evangelical Christians. Ditto for the war in Afghanistan, the bombing of Libya, the attacks in Yemen, etc. Who is calling for the bombing of Iran? Evangelical Christians. Who cheers for sending more and more troops all over the world to maim and kill more and more people (including innocents)? Evangelical Christians. Shoot (pun intended)! Most evangelical Christians didn’t even bat an eye when the federal government sent military and police personnel to murder American citizens, including old men, women, and children–Christian old men, women, and children, no less–outside Waco, Texas.

And where are today’s evangelical Christians giving a second thought regarding their fellow Christian brothers and sisters in many of these Middle Eastern countries that are being persecuted, imprisoned, tortured, and killed by the puppet regimes being put in power by the US government–at US taxpayer (including Christian taxpayer) expense? I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but more Christians have been persecuted under the US-imposed regime in Iraq than were ever persecuted when Saddam Hussein was in power. Oh! And don’t forget that it was the US government that was responsible for putting Saddam Hussein in power to begin with. The US government set up Osama bin Laden, too. But I digress.

In addition to the “white” wars (the ones everyone knows about), the US government authorizes some 70 black ops commando raids in some 120 countries EVERY DAY. In fact, the secret, black ops military of the US is so large today it now totals more personnel than the ENTIRE MILITARY OF CANADA!

A recent report noted, “In 120 countries across the globe, troops from Special Operations Command carry out their secret war of high-profile assassinations, low-level targeted killings, capture/kidnap operations, kick-down-the-door night raids, joint operations with foreign forces, and training missions with indigenous partners as part of a shadowy conflict unknown to most Americans. Once ‘special’ for being small, lean, outsider outfits, today they are special for their power, access, influence, and aura.”

To see the complete report of America’s secret wars, go to:

Yet, how much of this knowledge would even faze the average evangelical Christian today? All we hear from today’s “churches” is “bomb,” “attack,” “wipe them out,” etc. Then, at the same time, they get all emotional about sending missionaries to the same countries that they had just cheered-on the US military in raining down missiles of death and destruction upon (to bring salvation to the lucky ones that weren’t killed, I suppose).

And who are the ones that belittle and impugn Ron Paul? Evangelical Christians. Why? Because he tells the truth about America’s foreign policy being responsible for much of the hatred and bitterness erupting in foreign countries against us. I guarantee you that many of the “conservative” Republicans who booed Dr. Paul’s comments to this regard at the GOP Presidential debate this week would identify themselves as evangelical Christians.

See the report at:

The disciples of our Lord were called “Christians” first by the Gentiles of Antioch, because of the manner in which the disciples reminded them of Christ’s nature and teachings. I never thought I would hear myself say what I’m about to say, but the truth is, the term “Christian” today means anything but Christ-like. To many people today, “Christian” refers to some warmongering, mean-spirited, throw-anyone-to-the-wolves-who-crosses-them person, who then has the audacity to look down their nose in contempt against anyone who disagrees with them for even the smallest reason. And the word “church” has the stigma of being simply an enclave of warmongers to many people today. And that, my friends, is one reason so many people are so turned off with today’s Christianity. And I can’t say that I blame them. I’m turned off too!

Baldwin is not a pacifist but he advocates a return to biblical principles of nonaggression. This is the best way to avoid people hating America and Christianity. Otherwise, Evangelicals run the risk of being used as minions of Satan to accomplish his evil deeds, all of which will bring about the New World Order.

Considering the warmongering I’ve heard from Evangelicals in recent years, this is like a breath of fresh air for me!

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Jesus in the Vedas

I recently read the story of a former orthodox Hindu Brahmin priest, Aravindaksha Menon, who converted to Catholicism. You can read it here. It’s really quite interesting how he made this journey of faith mainly by studying his own holy scriptures!

The Vedas are considered the official religious books of Hinduism; there are four of them: Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda, and Adhara Veda. The other Hindu books – including the Ramayana, Mahabharatha and Bhagavath Gita – are simply epics or stories.

There is mention of only one God in the Rigveda. He is the creator of this universe; He is omnipresent; He is formless and bodiless. Nobody should make an idol of Him and worship the idol; it is worthless and useless.

As there are seventy three books in the (Catholic) bible, there are ten books (or mandalams) in the Rigveda. In the first to the ninth mandalam, it is clearly stated in several places who is the real God, who is man, why man should worship God and how he should worship Him. In the tenth mandalam there is mention about the first-born and only son of God, Prajapathy. ‘Praja’ means man, and ‘pathy’ means saviour.

Prajapathy comes to this world at the appropriate time. He travels around advising mankind, telling him what is sin and what is not sin, how he should live and how he should not. To those people who accept him and obey his commands, he offers help in this life and salvation after they die. At the end of his ministry, Prajapathy dies in a very similar way to Jesus - tied on a wooden cross. His death is both redemptive and sacrificial; it is described in verse 7 of chapter 90 of the 10th book of the Rigveda: “At the time of sacrifice, the son of God will be tightly tied to a wooden sacrificial post using iron nails by hands and legs, he will bleed to death and on the third day he will regain his life in a resurrection.”

There are other verses in the Rigveda that have striking similarities with passages in the bible.

Rig Veda X: 121:1

“Hiranyagarbha: samavarthaagre
Bhuuthasya jaatha: pathireka aaseeth
Sadaadhaara Prudhwivim dyaamuthemam
Kasmai devaaya havisha vidhemam.”

This translates to:

“In the beginning, God and his supreme spirit alone existed. From the supreme Spirit of the God proceeded Hiranya Garbha, alias Prajapathy, the first born of the God in the form of light. As soon as he was born, he became the saviour of all the worlds.”

This is similar to John 1:1-14: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God; all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.”

Rig Veda X:90:2

“Purusha evedam sarvam
Yadbhutham yachabhavyam
Uthaamruthathwasya esaana
Ya daannenathirohathi”

This translates to:

“This man, the first-born of God is all that was, all that is and all that will be. And he comes to this world to give recompense to everybody as per his deeds.”

This compares favourably with:

"I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty." (Revelation 1:8)
“Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay everyone for what he has done.” (Revelation 22:12)

Rigveda X:90:7

“Tham yajnam barhishi proukshan
Purusham jaathamagratha
Thena deva ayajantha
Sadhya rushayaschaye”

This translates to:

“This man, the first born of the God, was tied to a wooden sacrificial post and the gods and the Kings along the Seers performed the sacrifice.”

All the four gospels say Jesus was crucified on a wooden cross by the rulers (Herod and Pilate) and the seers (Annas and Caiphas).

Rig Veda X:90:16

“Thamevam Vidwanamruthaiha bhavathy
Nanya pandha ayanaya vidyathe”

This translates to:

“This (sacrifice) is the only way of redemption and liberation of mankind. Those who meditate and attain this man, believe in heart and chant with the lips, get liberated in this world itself and there is no other way of salvation.”

This is similar to:

“If you declare with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9)

No coincidence

The uncanny similarities between Prajapathy in the Vedas and Jesus seem more than coincidental to me. It seems that Prajapthy refers to the person of Jesus. How this is so is a bit of a mystery to me, but a Brahmin guru whom Aravindaksha Menon consulted gave this explanation:

"Every ancient scripture was one and the same. Hindus, Christians and Islam were all categorized later, all man made. The word of God was one, because God is only one."

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Flowers from my garden

Here are photos of flowers from my garden. They bloomed at different periods during the year. Most of them I chose and planted myself.

It gives me much joy to see these flowers as they are so colourful and beautiful. I like them all but I am particularly proud of my dahlias.

Tulip (April)

Rose (June)

Lily (June - July)

Dahlia (July - September)

The dahlias always look spectacular because of their vigrant colours and distinctive petals.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Destabilization of Syria based on Libya Model

The mainstream media are describing the events in Syria as a "revolution", but it is more like an armed insurrection than a genuine revolution. Definitely there are reasons for social unrest in Syria including an increase in unemployment in recent years, but the majority of Syria's population (including the opponents of the Al Assad government) do not support the "protest movement". The protests are of a sectarian nature and do not address broader issues of social inequality, civil rights and unemployment. There have been giant pro-government rallies in Syria, yet they have received little coverage in the mainstream media or falsely reported as anti-government protests.

What's happening in Syria is a process of destabliziation along the same lines as Libya, supported by the West, Turkey and the Saudis. There is evidence that trained gunmen and snipers have targeted the police, the armed forces as well as unarmed civilians. Yet the mainstream media narrative is that the government forces are violently cracking down on "peaceful protesters".

Syria represents the last remaining secular state in the Arab world. It has a composite culture in which Muslims, Christians and Druze has co-existed for centuries. Its populist, anti-Imperialist and secular base is derived from the dominant Baath party. It supports the struggle of the Palestinian people. The main objective of the US-Turkey-Israel-Saudi alliance is to destroy the Syrian secular state and replace it with an Arab sheikdom or a compliant pro-US "democracy".

It seems a NATO-led intervention in Syria is on the drawing board. According to Israeli intelligence sources:
"NATO headquarters in Brussels and the Turkish high command are meanwhile drawing up plans for their first military step in Syria, which is to arm the rebels with weapons for combating the tanks and helicopters spearheading the Assad regime's crackdown on dissent. Instead of repeating the Libyan model of air strikes, NATO strategists are thinking more in terms of pouring large quantities of anti-tank and anti-air rockets, mortars and heavy machine guns into the protest centers for beating back the government armored forces." (DEBKAfile, NATO to give rebels anti-tank weapons, August 14, 2011)
Turkey's military has undergone something of a major shift in recent months with General Necdet Ozel taking over as the Army and head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The shift favours the Muslim Brotherhood and greater support for the armed rebels in Syria. Military sources confirm Syrian rebels "have been training in the use of the new weapons with Turkish military officers at makeshift installations in Turkish bases near the Syrian border." This raises the possibility of direct involvement of Turkish troops in the future.

The use of Islamist proxies to fight in wars for NATO should be no surprise to anyone by now. They have a long history of working together from the heyday of the Soviet-Afghan war to the recent conflict in Libya. The commander of the Libyan rebels is none other Abdel Hakim Belhadj, an Al Qaeda asset, who fought with the mujahideen in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

BRIC countries such as Russia and China have so far resisted moves by NATO countries to get militarily involved in Syria. A lot depends how they will continue to support Syria as external pressures continue to grow. Syria is strategically important because of its location and its alliance with Iran. An attack on Syria could potentially plunge the country into a sectarian civil war and pave the way for an attack on Iran.

Papal Infallibility

When Catholics say the Pope is infallible, what do they mean? To many non-Catholics this may seem a pompous and conceited claim. Surely popes are human beings and are thus capable of sinning like the rest of us? Indeed, there have been some popes who have behaved in less than exemplary manner. However, one must not confuse “infallibility” with “impeccability”.

Papal infallibility does not mean that a pope is sinless or he can never be wrong on matters of discipline. What it means is that when he is speaking ex cathedra in his capacity as successor of St Peter on matters of faith and morals, with the assistance of the Holy Spirit, his teachings are without error.

Papal infallibility was debated at the First Vatican Council, summoned by Pius XI in 1869. At the time, when people were demanding greater democracy and freedom, few Catholics rejected out of hand the notion that the Pope might speak infallibly. The question was how, if at all, that should be defined. The text agreed by the cardinals, known as ‘The Roman Pontiff’ read:
“...when he speaks ex cathedra (Latin for ‘from his throne’), that is, when, exercising the office of pastor and teacher of all Christians, he defines...a doctrine concerning faith and morals to be held by the whole Church, through the divine assistance promised to him in Saint Peter, is possessed of that infallibility with which the Divine Redeemer wished his Church to be endowed...and therefore such definitions of the Roman Pontiff are irreformable of themselves, and not from the consent of the Church.”
This is a doctrine which was implicit in the early Church, but the Church's understanding of it developed and became more clearly understood over time. The doctrine is implicit in these Petrine texts: John 21:15–17 ("Feed my sheep . . . "), Luke 22:32 ("I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail"), and Matthew 16:18 ("You are Peter . . . ").

According to the text, there are limits imposed around papal infallibility. Routine papal teaching is not infallible. The pope has to be speaking in a particular and solemn form. No mention is made, however, as to how such a definition should be arrived at. These restrictions have meant that since 1870 only one papal statement has been deemed infallible – the definition of the Virgin Mary’s assumption, body and soul into heaven, made in 1950.