The alleged Norwegian attacker

Started by Michael Slusser, July 23, 2011, 07:51:46 PM

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LutherMan

Aren't the Norwegians such pacifists that the police are not even armed?

PTMcCain

#16
And, the other aspect of this that is troubling is the media's efforts to somehow associate this mentally disturbed man with Evangelical Christianity or other such musings about his "Christian" fundamentalism. Typical.

You can read his "manifesto" here.

In which he announces: I'm not going to pretend I'm a very religious person as that would be  a lie. I've always been very pragmatic and influenced by my secular surroundings and environment.



LutherMan

Didn't the very biased, lamestream media play that same angle with Tim McVeigh and the OK City bombing?

Dan Fienen

In general, religion is associated with violence - especially terroristic actions in two ways.

For some they manifest their disturbed mental condition through religion.  They are simply disturbed individuals who will act out their delusions and violent impulses in some way - religion becomes their excuse and usually their own religious ideas are delusional - not actually in accord with what is actually taught in the religion they profess.  This is especially true with individuals who commit terror - like this Norwegian attacker, Timothy MacVeigh, etc.

For some, they have an agenda and purpose for which they act and religion becomes a handy excuse for their actions and way to motivate and control their followers.  Hence the terrorist organizations whose leaders talk religion a lot, may believe it but are not bound by its strictures if inconvenient.  Whatever you want to say about the Middle East based terrorist organizations, they ignore masses of the Quran about the proper conduct of war and Muslims not killing Muslims.  Religion is handy to motivate and control the cannon fodder, however.  Religion becomes an excuse to grab power and whatever else they want.

Dan
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

Michael Slusser

I've always believed that, for people of fragile equilibrium, the membrane between sanity and insanity was thinnest in the areas of the greatest anxiety, namely, sex and God (not necessarily in that order). Religious nuts and people over-the-top about sex have never surprised me; both together still fit the picture.

The Norwegian attacker doesn't seem to fit on either account. He seems purely political--conservative, anti-immigrant and anti-multicultural. As Americans, we can see how that may fit within a psychologically normal profile.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
Retired Roman Catholic priest and theologian

PTMcCain

"we can see how that may fit within a psychologically normal profile"

Care to unpack that comment?

Not sure I follow what you mean.

Somebody can be politically conservative, concerned about immigration issues and not in favor of multiculturalism in a nation, but not go out and kill 90+ plus people.

LutherMan

#21
Quote from: PTMcCain on July 24, 2011, 04:32:39 PM

Somebody can be politically conservative, concerned about immigration issues and not in favor of multiculturalism in a nation, but not go out and kill 90+ plus people.
I am very politically conservative, concerned about immigration issues and not in favor of multiculturalism in my nation, and I am not about to go around killing anyone.  Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin probably fit the same profile as do  I ...

Michael Slusser

#22
Lutherman, I've never suggested that you did not fit into a psychologically normal profile.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
Retired Roman Catholic priest and theologian

TravisW

I've been reading his "Manifesto", and the thing that I think he has in common with some of the other terrorists is that he strikes me as perfectly sane, but totally brainwashed by his own propaganda.  In the world that he has created, bombing downtown Oslo and shooting a bunch of teenagers at a Labor Party camp are means to forwarding his revolution. 

LutherMan

Quote from: Michael Slusser on July 24, 2011, 06:15:06 PM
Lutherman, I've never suggested that you did not fit into a psychologically normal profile.

Peace,
Michael
Never thought you did, just stating my very right-wing politics...

Michael Slusser

Quote from: LutherMan on July 24, 2011, 06:29:40 PM
Quote from: Michael Slusser on July 24, 2011, 06:15:06 PM
Lutherman, I've never suggested that you did not fit into a psychologically normal profile.

Peace,
Michael
Never thought you did, just stating my very right-wing politics...

Well, you have some uncomfortable bedfellows.

Peace,
Michael
Fr. Michael Slusser
Retired Roman Catholic priest and theologian

PTMcCain

Ah, so Fr. Slusser did mean to equate holding somewhat comparable political views with the acts of the Norwegian killer. Interesting.

LutherMan

#27
I am probably farther right of most tea-partiers politically, yet I try my best to obey the fifth commandment.  I fail miserably, being a poor, miserable sinner...
Quote
The Fifth Commandment

The Fifth Commandment deals with God's view of human life, and that view is high - very high. He prohibits the careless use of human lives, the disregard and hatred of one human for another, and ultimately the taking of a human life. The Fifth Commandment is far-reaching in its scope. It addresses life issues such as murder, abortion, euthanasia, and suicide, as well as hatred, the condition of the human heart that leads to such horrific acts. The Lord Himself links the sin of the heart, hatred, to a violation of the Fifth Commandment. This is quite shocking to many people, because on its face one may not seem to have much to do with the other. How is a prohibition against taking human life linked to hatred? How does God's law against murder apply in the cases of abortion, euthanasia, and suicide?

Our consideration of this commandment must begin with the fact that all human life belongs to God. Our first father, Adam, received the breath of life from God and, scripture says, he became a living being. Through that breath God imparted an eternal soul, and every child of Adam and Eve since has possessed from conception that eternal being called the soul. God's creation of mankind established this. He set humanity apart from the rest of creation by creating in us this eternal soul - a gift of life not given to any other part of the creation. Even after the fall into sin, Cain's murder of Abel stands out as horrific example of this profound sin against God and against His gift of life. As we read in Deuteronomy 32:39, "... there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand." Simply put, human life belongs to God.

So if we begin with an understanding of God's pre-eminence over life, of His sovereignty in this matter of life, we then understand that no amount of rationalizing, human reasoning, or intellectual gymnastics will provide justification to take an innocent human life. When I use that word, "innocent", I am stepping out onto a slippery slope. What I mean by "innocent" is the taking of a life apart from those duly authorized to wield the power of the sword, namely the government.

The fundamental error made by those who seek to justify and even promote abortion, euthanasia, and suicide is that they believe temporal circumstances overrule God's control over life. And so, the logic runs, an unplanned pregnancy may be terminated and a life ended because circumstances allow it. So, too, with euthanasia, a life deemed "not worth living" by someone who has no right to make that determination, results in humans seizing control over that which is not theirs to control. This even applies to our own life - it is not ours to end according to our own opinions or feelings. All life belongs to God.

Even when a form of murder is couched in terms of mercy, it does not overrule God's fundamental pre-eminence over life. "I kill and I make alive", says the One, True God.

Apart from the warnings against usurping control in matters of life, we are given the positive duty to care for and protect our neighbor's life. "Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute (Proverbs 31:8)." Think about the number of times the Word of God warns His followers to tend to the needs of widows and orphans - have you ever wondered why? Why those two groups? Simply put, because they had almost no rights or protection afforded them by the secular society. A woman with no husband or grown sons had no standing in the community and no means to support herself. An abandoned or orphaned child had no societal safety net to protect him from death. And into this situation, God requires mercy from those who follow Him. It is as St. James states, "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world (James 1:27)." The point is that we have a positive duty to protect the well being of the weak, and we expressly do not have the authority to harm or kill.

And here lies the fundamental Christian opposition to abortion. As far back as the first century, when infanticide and abortion were widely practiced, Christians expressly opposed the practice of abortion. The Didache - an ancient document known more fully as the Teachings of the Apostles and is generally viewed as an instructional book for new converts - states clearly that abortion is to be rejected as an option for the Christian. Human life belongs to God and an unborn life is still human life. So too with euthanasia or its sanitized and politically-correct name, "mercy-killing." The fundamental argument for this taking of human life is that we know best and we know enough to decide when a human life is no longer worth living. The arrogance in this assumption is astounding.

But Jesus goes beyond these prohibited practices and extends the Fifth Commandment to apply to the sins of the heart against the brother. It is in the Sermon on the Mount that he states, "But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, 'You fool!' will be liable to the hell of fire (Matthew 5:22)." And, St. John writes, "Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him (1 John 3:15)." Hate is the root of murder.

It is rebellion against God and hatred towards Him that leads sinful men to conclude that they knows best and have the authority to end human life. Hatred in our hearts brings us to make judgment about what life is "worthy" and what life is not. Hatred in the human heart causes murder out of revenge, anger, or passion.

Perhaps the most dangerous thing we can do regarding the Fifth Commandment is to put distance between it and ourselves, to treat it as though it has nothing to say to us. To see the Fifth Commandment in the narrowest possible terms is to effectively exclude the underlying premise of the command - that human life belongs to God. A narrow interpretation sees God prohibiting murder but allowing circumstantial excuses for ending human life in the cases of abortion, euthanasia, and suicide. This simply cannot be.

As Christians, we owe a duty of love to our neighbor and to help him maintain his dignity, his self-worth, and his self-understanding as a precious child of God. When we see our lives and the lives of those around us in the way, the Fifth Commandment becomes a call to action, to speak up for the weak and those who cannot speak for themselves. It stands as a beacon of hope for those who wonder whether or not their lives are really worth that much, especially when the secular culture says that the old, the infirmed, the mentally handicapped, and the unborn are simply not worth that much.

The Fifth Commandment should not be regarded as only a prohibition against murder, a situation most of us will never have to worry much about. Instead, we should see it this way: "You shall not murder. What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not hurt or harm our neighbor in his body, but help and support him in every physical need."

I struggle the most  with the eighth, miserably...

Dave Benke

I'd rather pick at what's meant by "multi-culturalism" and "anti-immigration."  A person is apparently ideologically so in favor of a mono-cultural approach, and in favor of closing boundaries to anyone from outside of his or her own country, that he picks up a gun and kills 100 people.  I live in the most pro-immigration city in the country, and in the most multi-cultural county in the world.  Even the numerically few here who bark about too many of "them" among us have to face the fact that "they" are productive in education, hold down jobs, and participate in American society prety much to the maximum.  What ideologically prevents that thought from occurring to our killer or to others who are anti-immigraiton or anti-multicultural? 

I'm reading that in Europe "multiculturalism" is not succeeding.  What is it there, and in what ways is it different or similar to what we find say in New York City?

Dave Benke
It's OK to Pray

Daniel L. Gard

President Benke,

I'll bet our California friends might contest your claim to the most "pro-immigration city in the country, and in the most multi-cultural county in the world." But I will stay out of that one! Here in the mid-west, everyone looks the same and they are all Lutheran.

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