Friday, November 20, 2015

Prayers didn't cause the terrorist attacks in Paris, murderers did

  On 13 November, 2015, members of the Islamic State carried out an assault on the city of Paris, île de France, France.  Paris, as you may know is the most populous city in France, and one of the most visited cities on earth.  France has a peculiarly high Muslim population for a western European country, although most of them would not do anything of this nature.  Which brings me to my next point.  Is religion responsible?  Well, saying that the attackers had "religious motives" does not in and of itself mean religion is responsible.  You can make an excuse for almost anything.  I saw a Buzzfeed article that asked that people not pray for Paris, as "prayer was responsible for the attacks".  I must admit to being a little confused by the statement, and not just because of the sheer stupidity of it.  My prayers did not kill Parisians at a rock concert and a football match.  Many of those people were around my age, some younger.  A few were even Muslim.  Murderers killed these people.  Murderers were not responsible because someone prayed, they were responsible for the attacks because they were murderers.  Can religion turn people violent?  Certainly, but that does not mean it is the religion.  I can't say whether the ISIL attackers are true Muslims or not, as I am not Muslim and I cannot make that pronouncement.  I am Catholic and other Catholics have killed in the name of God (Sack of Constantinople, for instance), they were also excommunicated from the Church because of it (everyone seems to forget that part).  I will say that I can think of many times where Atheists reacted in unjustifiable violence.  Like the communists killing the entire Russian royal family, including children.  That was irreligious violence.  So religion, or in the latter case, irreligion, may not be the problem.  My guess is that there is a psychological component.  In the United States, radicalisation is not too terrible uncommon (which is really sad).  Much of the time, people become radicalised in prison as Islam does not have a clergy class, an Imam does not have to be formally trained, and what happens is that radical Muslim imams make their way into prisons as chaplains.
With all of that, I leave you with this verse from the bible:  "Et Dieu essuiera toute larme de leurs yeux, et la mort ne sera plus, et il n'y aura plus ni deuil, ni cri, ni douleur, car les premières choses ont disparu. " Apoc 21:4
 God bless France, pray for Paris.