An blog by a member of the Catholic peace movement, Pax Christi, to explore the nexus between contemplation and resistance. "The Christian must discover in contemplation, and in the giving of his life, those symbolic actions which will ignite the people's faith to resist injustice with their whole lives, lives coming together as a united force of truth and thus releasing the liberating power of the God within them." - James Douglass, Contemplation and Resistance.
Sunday, September 30, 2007
The Word of God is not Chained
"The government says it's about "keeping the American people safe." But from what? From decency, from humanity, from morality, from law? Because by now, the stories of official U.S. atrocities are pouring out from all over the world. Just surf over to this page, www.thegully.com/essays/torture/torture2.html, skim the headlines. Surely that ought to be enough to tell us that we are up to our necks in tactics too close to sadism to overlook. Tactics that break the minds of innocents and decay the soul of those who call themselves victors."
The stories are pouring in - that the U.S. Empire has now openly accepted its role as the sole authority on earth, including its moral authority. This means that it can define torture in whatever way it deems most expedient. As Naomi Klein details in her insightful new study, The Shock Doctrine, these tactics have a specific psychological aim whether they are practiced on individuals or whole nations - to erase history, to reduce human beings to a child-like dependency on the Empire and its representatives.
The Christian voice rings out in reply: "Refuse to kill. Refuse the order to go to war ... We know your resistance to war will be difficult and require great courage."
- Jonah House and Dorothy Day Catholic Worker. September 28, 2007
"Wrong is easy. Right is difficult and long. Do what your heart says is right."
"We plead with you, as Bishop Oscar Romero pleaded with Salvadoran troops: "When you hear the words of a man telling you to kill, remember instead the words of God: 'Thou shalt not kill!' No soldier is obliged to obey an order contrary to the law of God In the name of God, in the name of our tormented people who have suffered so much and whose laments cry out to heaven, I beseech you, I beg you, I order you in the name of God, stop the repression!'"