Posted by panch from pool0175.cvx25-bradley.dialup.earthlink.net (22.214.171.124) on Friday, July 19, 2002 at 9:50AM :
This is a very important, and a very pernicious ideology among us. I think it bears alot of responsibility for our stagnation as a People...not as Americans...or Europeans...but as Assyrians. It explains why we aren't able to lift a finger...because to lift that finger flies in the face of a passivity that somehow became the defining characteristic of what it means to BE Assyrian. That's not the way I remember us.
My mother told me of the dismal book of martyrs her grandmother would read to them each day when they were children, so they would..."never forget". The overall message in these atrocious tales is that we must look forward to our martyrdom, that to be martyred is the greatest gift we can render to Jesus etc.
Roman officials of old didn't know what to make of Christians who would periodically go like lemmings before the governors and openly declare, with fervent eyeball, that they were Christian and wanted nothing more then to join their Lord. At first they obliged them and several were imprisoned and later put to death...until the madness became too much to bear and they sent them back home...as insane people under a collective delusion.
There are letters exchanged between Pliny the Younger and the Emperor Trajan in which Pliny seeks advice on how to deal with these followers of Christ. They were viewed as harmless cranks who did manage, noinetheless, to live decent and upright lives...something novel in the Roman Empire. Trajan advised they not be hunted down...but if they insisted on making their views known, especially the idea that they had their own king in heaven...a treasonous act by Roman Law as the Emperor was the only god allowed...they should be asked merely to light a stick of incense at any shrine to the Emperor, or the Roman God...and let go. In other words they were free to worship in private. No one imagining that their "dear" god of love would insist they must take their own lives by going to the marketplace and telling everyone of their beliefs...forcing the governments hand. You can see the same force in effect now when in Iraq we make such a big deal that the government will not allow another church to be built. For god's sake and the sake of your children,,,sit at home and pray. What does god want, the example of you leading upright lives and raising your children in peace...or see you battling with hordes of hostile neighbors pissed as hell at you becauise your co-religionists are bombing their lands? Is the point to be Christian and go your private ways, or to stick your religion in the eye of other people and force them to tolerate you?
Anyway.... If they refused they should be imprisoned for awhile to think about, then asked again. Only after repeated obstinate refusal should they be executed. ..like any unreformed criminal...which is what they were under the Law of the land. They may be saints and martyrs to you...but they were just zealous fanatics intent on flouting the Law in the marketplace...as if that was what their god asked them to do. But he emphasizes that under no circumstance should they be harmed or sought out for testing in any way.
You'd think a sane god would allow his followers to lie a little...Lord knows they've been lying and fornicating and committing whoredoms by the gross ever since. But no...these fanatics had to go before the authorities to proclaim their beliefs...knowing full well it could mean their deaths...much to the discomfort of their families...if the families had not been insane also...cheering on Mom and Dad to make that "ultimate" protestation of faith and love for Jesus by getting murdered right in his footsteps.
It's no wonder the Romans weren't interested in that kind of Christianity and declared us all to be heretics. How you gonna run a franchise, make it grow and establish branch offices with that kind of material?
But the god wasn't sane. In his older manifestation Yahweh was known to officially wink at any Jew compelled to deny Him. Both god and man understood that any conversion or compliance under threat of death was coercion and not freely entered into. Jews could burn incense, dance a jig, recite poetry, anything they were threatened with death for not doing...knowing their god understood and would forgive them. That's a rare touch of compassion in an otherwise ruthless beast.
Not us boy...we insisted on the full price being paid...even went looking to do it...and encouraged our children to think that getting snuffed out for Jesus won them some sort of a seat by the fire in heaven.
I'm beginning to think there never was that famous mother who allowed her seven sons to be butchered in front of her eyes rather than "switch"...or whatever was asked of her. In fact...I'm willing to bet all of those examples were bogus...church propaganda intended to make little fanantics out of us...unthinking and uncriritcal ones too...the best kind...even though as growed ups we would win ten scholarships to Oxford...still, there was something cracked in our thinking if we once bought this stuff.
We were murdered for Christ by the thousands...I have no doubts about that. But I don't believe for a second that any Assyrian mother watched as her children were killed...as I also don't believe anyone wanted to do anything but kill that mother and her children outright....after some additional humiliation. Point is, she would have been killed anyway...just for being Christian. ...which would make being Christian clearly a life-threatening condition back there and then...and not any kind of a noble ideology to cling to...like you really had the chance to save yourself by denying Christ. If people knew back then that by denying Jesus they would actually be spared...their children allowed to live, the family farm secured etc...there would have been a rush to convert...why the hell not? What's been so much worse about Islam than about Christianity?
All this slaughter has been brought to you courtesy of jealous prelates vying with Kings and Princes for lands, wealth and power. Christian have certainly killed other Christians by the millions...what's so awful about saving your ass from Christian and Muslim by joining Islam...the dominant religion in that region since the Muslim Conquest?
No...I am not in love with ANY of them. I just don't like a Rat, I don't care where he comes from or what he believes. Rats are Rats. And I don't trust the impulse in us that says our ways are so much better we're willing to kill innocent people to make the point.
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