A Few Words about the Mosque at Ground Zero

A Note from the Creator

ONE OF THE REASONS THAT I was reluctant to take on this whole blogging thing, when Ken first started nagging me about it, was that I've done this kind of thing before.

Not a blog, exactly—and not in this universe—but I do have enough experience along parallel lines to know that eventually it gets me drawn into local politics.

I generally try to stay above all that.

But sometimes my tolerance for sheer stupidity and for fundamental dishonesty just runs thin.

So I'm going to step in, and point a few things out:

  1. The United States of America has a policy of "freedom of religion", which means, among other things, that anyone in the country is allowed to:
    1. believe anything they want about me,
    2. build large buildings in which to teach others anything they want about me,
    3. and collect money from those who believe the same things about me to use for various purposes.
  2. Most of what most of you do believe about me is wrong.

    Come on, admit it.

    You won't find any two churches or mosques or temples that agree 100% on what they believe about me—the differences between them are sometimes staggering.

    Consequently, even a mere human must realize that most of those beliefs have to be mistaken.

    With the one exception of the congregation you happen to attend, right?

    Add to that the fact that most of you admit that I am essentially beyond human understanding—about the only thing you get right, by the way—and your ability to cling to your various doctrines, let alone fight over them, is quite amazing.
  3. This means that most of your differences aren't worth fighting about—since you have no idea which of you is right (or wrong) on which point, and no way to find out.
  4. So the net effect of all this infighting among people who believe in some version of me is that it gives people who don't care a fig about you (or me) a way to pit you against each other.
  5. There's no more reason to blame American Muslims for a political act of a small group of Muslims from another country than there is to blame all Jews for the crucifixion of Jesus just because a small group of Jews cooperated in that event, also for political reasons.

    If the Christian community were to start screaming that it was "insensitive" of Isrealis to erect synagogues in Jerusalem—the city where a group of political Jewish people helped to do Jesus in—even you humans would sense the absurdity.

    Too long ago?

    Try 1996: A Christian, by the name of Eric Robert Rudolph, planted a pipe bomb in the Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta.

    And yet there are multiple Christian churches operating in the immediate vicinity of that terrorist act, apparently unaware that they are being "insensitive".
  6. There's a pattern here:
    1. A handful of first century Jews made a scape-goat of Jesus for their own political reasons,
    2. A handful of twentieth century Germans made scape-goats of Jews for their own political reasons,
    3. A handful of twenty-first century conservative operatives have set out to make scapegoats of American Muslims, for their own political reasons.

      They think it will help them win the next election.

      And that is all that this is about.

Don't fall for it.

As I said at the beginning, I try to stay out of local politics.

But when people start using differences in belief about me to win elections, and do it by sowing discord between my children of various creeds—mistaken or not—I take offense.

Yours,

The Ground of All Being

Comments

I've just finished reading James Carse's, The Religious Case Against Belief. New York: The Penguin Press ISBN 978-1-59420-169-1

I'm not sure I understand the second half of the book, but the discussion about the nature of belief is compelling. He also has a blog that I've just discovered, so I can't comment on it's quality, except to say that I've been impressed by the three books of his that I've read. Finite and Infinite Games is the best.

http://www.jamescarse.com/jc/Blog/Blog.html

Also relevant is Richard Rohr's The Naked Now.

You are, of course, referring to some minor points in my post on a much deeper level than the finite game-players who object to the mosque.

It's always nice to have a reader push the discussion to more sophisticated levels.

I'm sure Ken would welcome (and, frankly, could use) comments like yours as well, on some of his posts.

Thanks for helping me evolve this universe.

-TGOAB