By Thomas Block
This unsettling publication studies particular situations of 'holy conflict' as proposed within the holy books of the key religion traditions, and illustrates how bellicose, war-like language is used to provide an explanation for the religious quest. the writer proposes that this intermingling of battle and spirituality prepares the inhabitants for the arriving of struggle. struggle as religious perform seems inevitable, because of this religio-violent schooling that's woven via all religion traditions. The institutional mixing of the sacred and human aggression seem to be basic to human society.
The moment element of the publication particularizes this dynamic inside our modern, American social and political milieu. It concentrates at the political language and speeches of yank politicians when you consider that 2002, following the run-up to the Iraq conflict and its continuation over the last decade, displaying precisely how this mystical/war conflation permeates American society.
This booklet has huge power readership, together with lecturers and lay readers concerned about the fields of warfare, political technology, peace and clash answer, faith, spirituality and common social history.
Students from West element to St. John's of Annapolis will locate it difficult and informative, possibly altering their notion of battle, faith and human society.
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Extra info for A Fatal Addiction: War in the Name of God
The fundamental dynamic of a violent God was set with the ancient Mesopotamian creation myth, which then influenced the Jewish Bible and, hence, nearly half of today’s world population. 96 The Greek and Roman Religions The ancient Greeks linked war and love. 97 Western civilization is founded on the philosophy, political structure, culture and, to a lesser extent, religious mythology of the Greek (c. ) and then Roman (c. –400) societies. Many aspects of the Abrahamic faiths can be traced back into ancient Greece and Rome.
Regina Schwartz provided a look at the Biblical underpinnings for how war, religion and state are inseparable. The Bible’s preoccupation with collective identity was read through the lens of nationalism — God’s chosen people became the chosen nation . . In a disturbing inversion, nationalism was authorized by the once-holy writ. A text that once posited collective identity as an act of God (“I will be your God if you will be my people”) came to posit the collective identity as the fiat of the nation authorized by God (“One nation under God”).
One of the great mysteries for many people who have never been to war, nor considered going, is how individuals are compelled, seduced or choose of their own volition to go into combat. One fascinating aspect of war, one that can be difficult to fully appreciate due to its counter-intuitive conclusion, is that war counteracts the fear of death. Hannah Arendt noted this oxymoronic aspect of war, which uncovers for the soldier the fullness of life and power in the act of destruction: As far as human experience is concerned, death indicates an extreme of loneliness and impotence.