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, June 01, 2008
God is Crying
Iraqi babies dying in the American war oven
"One thing that's clear in the Scriptures is that the nations do not lead people to peace; rather, people lead the nations to peace. There's a beautiful text in both Micah and Isaiah where the prophets say that the people will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. And it ends by saying that nations will not rise up against other nations, and they will not study war anymore. Peace begins not with nations but with the people of God. It is people who humanize the nations, people who follow the Human One that Daniel spoke of rising from the beasts, the Son of Man the gospels proclaim. The end of war begins with people who believe that another world is possible and that another empire has already interrupted time and space and is taking over this earth with the dreams of God. Those dreams begin with people of faith and hope who are audacious enough to be certain of what they do not see. We believe so much that we cannot help but start enacting the prophecies. As our brother Jim Wallis says, 'we believe despite the evidence, and we watch the evidence change.'" - Shane Claiborne, "HOLY MISCHIEF"
'Our apologies good friends for the fracture of good order
the burning of paper instead of children;
the angering of the orderlies in the front parlor of the charnel house.
We could not so help us God do otherwise, For we are sick at heart
our hearts give us no rest for thinking of the Land of Burning Children..." - the Catonsville Nine
"The disconnect between the arsenal of the terrorist enemy and that arrayed against it in the post-9/11 years affirms Eisenhower’s warning about the military-industrial complex’s 'unwarranted influence.' One wonders how lobbyists and politicians maintain a straight face as they argue, as Senator Joe Lieberman has, for $2.5 billion submarines to fight terrorists who lack even a dinghy. I don’t doubt that the lobbyists will continue to make their case and that the money spent toward that end will secure political and pundit support, but the gambit is wearing thin. So too is the effort to manufacture crises with “rogue nations” and to exaggerate the cohesion and power of the 'terrorist' enemy." - Robert Sheer, "Republic or Empire?"
The empire must continue to manufacture enemies in order to justify its military power. Yet enemies it manufactures ("Al Qaida", Iraqi terrorists, the Taliban) seem more and more like stick figures in a bad cartoon. Only the persuasive power of the corporate media and its suborned pundits can convince a stubbornly rational public that such enemies as "Al Qaida" actually exist. See the "The Power of Nightmares" to explode that myth. The CIA has invented many myths in its undying support for the growth of empire, yet the latest series about bin Laden and his shadowy network of Muslim fanatics may be destined for a short run.
Still we remain silent and believing. And God's judgment lies heavy upon our silence: "Yet, Mr. Berrigan's concern about silence lingers. Silence in the face of evil - whether launched against a human fetus, a child subjected to 'shock and awe' or a civilian whose death is defined as collateral damage - makes us all an accomplice to the unforgivable. In a play written by Daniel Berrigan based upon the trial transcripts of their conviction, Philip argued: 'Let lawmakers, judges and lawyers think less of the law, and more of justice; less of legal ritual, more of human rights. To our bishops and superiors, we say: Learn something about the gospel and something about illegitimate power. When you do, you will liquidate your investments, take a house in the slums, or even join us in jail.'" - Ron Manuto and Sean Patrick O'Rourke, "Lessons from the Catonsville Nine"