Disinfecting A Language of Persuasion

Thursday, March 24th, 2011 | by Gabriel Thy |

LATELY, THERE HAVE BEEN LIVELY DISCUSSIONS AFOOT about whether Islam is a cult, a great religion, or a mere but tenacious heresy of Christianity. While we deny all three of those characterizations of Islam, and insist that Arabian supremacy as the engine of Mohammedism is in uncanny direct opposition to Christianity, even to the point of declaring Islam the Beast of St. John and Mohammed its False Prophet, below is an argument for Islam as Christian heresy:

Peter de Montboissier, also known as Peter the Venerable who lived in the beginning of the 12th century was very involved in matters of Mohammedanism and even had the Koran translated into Latin after spending time studying the subject in Spain.

He demonstrates Islam is a Christian heresy in his celebrated and perfectly accepted by the Church works: “Summa totius heresis Saracenorum (The Summary of the Entire Heresy of the Saracens) and the Liber contra sectam sive heresim Saracenorum (The Refutation of the Sect or Heresy of the Saracens).” (from Wikipedia and the Catholic Encyclopedia)

From Wikipedia, again:

In these works Peter portrays Islam as a Christian heresy that approaches paganism, and he explains to St. Bernard that his goal is …”that I may follow the custom of those Fathers, who passed over no heresy in silence ever, even the lightest (as I will thus call it), but rather resisted it with all the strength of their faith, and showed it, through writings and arguments, to be detestable and damnable.”

We suspect the “Church” has never, officially at least, “corrected” or “clarified” its understanding of Mohammedanism as a Christian heresy, witnessed perhaps by the actions and the recent comments and by Pope Benedict when visiting Turkey. The fact that it doesn’t refer to it as such today is dictated by completely different but rather obvious reasons.




MORE FROM TODAY’S Theosplatz archives…

November 5 – Let’s Get It All Out Into The Principalities Of The Air

Outreach To Whom? Unto Thee We Plead… I did not write the following. It is a found piece I thought needed a place from which to launch new inquiry. Today I am not inquiring, merely re-posting it. It is unsigned, but with a solid point of view. Soon, I hope to return to this letter with a few questions and statements of my own. First of all, there is nothing I can dispute in this first paragraph concerning Mister Hogue. He is indeed a rogue scholar, Read more »

April 25 – Jesus In Political Garb

We might surprise many by suggesting that Yeshua the Nazarene if found strolling along the fringes of today’s political landscape would probably be considered a “conservative moderate liberal” for the following reasons:1. Conservative, because he believed that the law should not be abolished but fulfilled and that not even “a jot or a tittle” should be removed.2. Moderate, because he refused to take sides. (“Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, and Read more »


Our Savage Nation

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 | by Gabriel Thy |

WITH A SINGLE WORD, “prophetically,” Robin of Berkeley gets to the heart of this throwback to the thunder and histrionics of the Old Testament prophets. Michael Savageis a man out of time, a return to the ancient Hebrew prophets. He is Ezekiel, lying on his side, bound by ropes, suffering as he warns of the consequences of abandoning God; Jeremiah, wandering around Jerusalem with an ox yoke around his neck, reminding people of the culture and good they’ve forgotten; and he is Isaiah, stripped naked and barefoot and warning of the brutality and persecution to come if they continue to follow false gods.

The Michael Savage show is the stuff of Old Testament. Listening to him is like reading the Psalms, all anger and angst and despair. Sure, he intones, “I believe in the Bible” but when is God going to do something?

And so each afternoon Savage sits down at the microphone and offers the 21st century equivalent of getting naked and barefoot. He bluntly, angrily calls out media and political elites for destroying the most prosperous and free nation the world has ever seen. Their “lies” have given us “the sexual free-for-all, the experimental drugs, the easy divorce, the banishment of Judeo-Christian anything from schools, the flood of immigrants, and the so-called abortion rights movement.” And out comes the Bible, as he reads from the prophet Micah, “thou shall eat but not be satisfied…. “

“That’s you,” he thunders over the air, “That’s you!” Look what they’ve done to you, what you’ve allowed them to do to you. They say we can have it all if we just listen to them — e.g., spend our way into prosperity, let the government take care of us — but they don’t care about you, only themselves. Look around, they’ve given us “corruption and violence.” It is “horrible to believe this could happen to this country.” Wake up, he booms, let’s find our way back “from Babylon.”

In Georgetown, in Cambridge and Berkeley they call it “lunatic fringe” bigotry. But he perches atop the talk radio business because ordinary Americans, openly mocked by Beltway politicians and media elites, call it Truth with a capital “T.” The elites don’t get him and never will. That’s why, as the New Yorker put it, he is doomed to being a “permanent resident of the political wilderness, sending daily dispatches back to the diseased civilization the rest of us call home.”

The Michael Savage show is the stuff of Old Testament. Listening to him is like reading the Psalms, all anger and angst and despair. Sure, he intones, “I believe in the Bible” but when is God going to do something? “I pray four of five times a day” but sometimes I feel like “Mother Theresa near the end. Mother Theresa said He (God) doesn’t write, doesn’t call, what’s the point of this?” The point, of course, is also contained in the Psalms, which mixes despair with hope.

Read it all.


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MORE FROM TODAY’S Theosplatz archives…

June 15 – What Did You Mean By That, Sir?

Christian, Jew, Muslim or Athiest? Can you tell by looking?MODERATE ISLAM IS THE SLICKEST DECEIT and most pernicious invader, like a cancer—it is being chauffeured around in state department limousines. Here is my common sense truism: Unless the first amendment is taken away from Islam, as a totalitarian political death cult, Islam is guaranteed to turn America into a living hell. Even though Muslims consist of a mere 12% of the US population, Read more »

July 16 – Cowardice Of The Church

WHAT IS SO EVIL is not just that Muhammad took man’s natural conception of God—the God of love and mercy to turn him 700 years after Christ into the AntiGod, a god of extermination, terror, torture, rape, child molestation, hate—not that Muhammad destroyed the Sermon on the Mount and the teachings of Jesus with the Qu’ran—this is evil incarnate, but what is so disgustingly evil are the Christians/Ministers/Churches and Rabbis/Jewish Read more »


Religious Belief And The Science of Richard Dawkins

Thursday, January 20th, 2011 | by Gabriel Thy |


Cruel To Be Kind

Richard Dawkins, like the religious fundamentalist who believes that he knows and carries out the will of God, fails to recognize human limitations. With his all-encompassing faith in reason and the declarative, he believes that human beings may “discover that there are no limits” to understanding. As a consequence, he derides religion as being entirely “irrational”.

He argues, “Faith is an evil precisely because it requires no justification and brooks no argument”; people who have faith are not “taught to question and think through their beliefs”. Yet, according to the classic definition of Christian faith, theology is fides quaerens intellectum, “faith seeking understanding” (Anselm). It is faith venturing to inquire, daring to ask questions, to fight the inclination to accept things as they are, challenging unexamined assumptions about God, ourselves and our world. Although there is a place for mystery in the recognition of the limitations of being human, there is also a place for reason.

According to Daniel Migliore, faith must be distinguished from fideism, which says we reach a point where we must stop our inquiry and simply believe; faith keeps on seeking and asking in dialogue with experience and scripture, a hermeneutical circle. Truth is only ever partially possessed as faith sees only dimly, not face to face (1 Cor. 13:12) (Migliore 2-3). And reason plays a key role in this struggle. Writes Augustine of Hippo:

I ascended to the power of reasoning to which is to be attributed the power of judging the deliverance of the bodily senses. This power, which in myself I found to be mutable, raised itself to the level of its own intelligence, and led my thinking out of the ruts of habit. It withdrew itself from the contradictory swarms of imaginative fantasies, so as to discover the light by which it is flooded. (Confessions VII.xvii.23)

Saint Augustine is understood to have “attained to that which is” only through the use of his faculty of reason (Confessions VII.xvii.23).

Writer Richard Harries states that the idea of faith and reason being inherently opposed to one another is “mind-boggling in its lack of historical perspective”. He notes that all philosophers, ancient and modern, have believed that reasons can be adduced for and against a religious view of life: “Most of them have, in fact, believed in God but all have thought religious belief a matter of rational argument.” Religious belief is not a matter of two plus two equals four, but of considered judgement. It involves our aesthetic sense, our moral judgement, our imagination and our intuition. These judgements can be the basis of reasoned discussion, but they also involve the whole person.

But what have they to offer, but a vague internationalism, a squalid materialism, and the promise of impossible utopias? Nothing can save England if she will not save herself. If we lose faith in ourselves, in our capacity to guide and govern, if we lose our will to live, then indeed our story is told.

Thus, religious believers do not necessarily view their sacred text as a source of truth that is absolute, plain and unchanging (even as others, less inclined to rationality, considere these believers the height of hypocrisy). They interpret their canon with an eye to competing sources of truth, including modern science and philosophy. Likewise, they consider the changing condition of society for its impact on their religious understandings.

Accordingly, many religious believers form and revise their beliefs, constantly striving to maintain an overall belief structure that is logical and coherent. Hardly impervious to persuasion, they are broadly open to rational dialogue, both within and outside their religious community.

Whether they were considering a strident unbeliever like Dawkins or a dedicated but intellectually inspired believer like CS Lewis, Winston Churchill and George Orwell summed up so-called intellectuals so succinctly, how they are a weakening force because firstly everyone assumes what they say is right because they’ve got a reputation as intellectuals, even when they’re wrong, and that believing these intellectuals can have such dire consequences. He said it about Britain but it could so easily be any Western country today. Here’s what Winston Churchill said about them 78 years ago:

“Historians have noticed, all down the centuries, one peculiarity of the English people, which has cost them dear. We have always thrown away after a victory the greater part of the advantages we had gained in the struggle. The worst difficulties from which we suffer do not come from without. They come from within. They do not come from the cottages of the wage earners; they come from a peculiar type of brainy people, always found in our country, who, if they add something to its culture, take much from its strength. Our difficulties come from the mood of unwarrantable self-abasement, into which we have been cast, by a powerful section of our own intellectuals. They come from the acceptance of defeatist doctrines by a large proportion of our politicians. But what have they to offer, but a vague internationalism, a squalid materialism, and the promise of impossible utopias? Nothing can save England if she will not save herself. If we lose faith in ourselves, in our capacity to guide and govern, if we lose our will to live, then indeed our story is told.” —Winston Churchill, 1933

  • And here is how George Orwell, Dwight D Eisenhower and Albert Camus summed them up:
  • You must be an intellectual. Only an intellectual could say something so stupid. — George Orwell
  • An intellectual is someone whose mind watches itself. — Albert Camus
  • I heard a definition of an intellectual, that I thought was very interesting: a man who takes more words than are necessary to tell more than he knows. —Dwight D. Eisenhower
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