Sunday, January 01, 2017

Sunday Sermon: Murder in Istanbul

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I was thinking what title to name this latest atrocity.   Should it be an outrage, or tragedy, but no: simple murder sums it up for me.

This was an intentional act by at the time of writing person(s) unknown reported dressed up as Santa Claus murdering innocent revelers in the Reina nightclub in Istanbul Turkey.

Actually Marcus was in Istanbul just 18 hours ago though I did not have time to visit the city centre let alone any Nightclub.

When these murderous atrocities are made our viewpoint is often thrown off target and a number of predictable and sad responses come forth from the usual world leaders and authorities

The Prayer Response

White House National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said the attack on "innocent revelers" celebrating New Year's shows the attackers' savagery. He said the U.S. was sending thoughts and prayers to the relatives of those killed.

For me the Prayer response devalues the concerns of secular people and is particuarly ironic in the case where the Predominantly Christian audience (USA in this example) is praying across the religious divide for a Islamic atrocity  (I mean carried out in a majority Muslim country).

Since I believe the power of prayer is has the effectiveness (to quote my old manager) as the square root of f**k all,  can't the White House and indeed every government find a better way to express their concerns.

Do Turks Hate Santa?

In recent times Turkey moves towards a more fundamentalist Islamic interpretation and IMHO from Google the incidence of particularly Christian persecution increases.

Google Search

Agata Asked

Agata asked me:  Should I continue to ask you who was responsible for these murders or is it obvious?   Her comment was insightful in the sense that this modus operandi is one we have seen all too often from certain individuals claiming to represent the views of /The Religion of Peace/

In this case the group committing the murders is not yet known so we should not formally pre-judge the situation.  But I can tell you that I would be astonished if police were looking for Buddhist or Jain extremists.

The Real Religion of Peace

All religions were not created, and I stress created equally.  Sam Harris provides the classic reference IMHO

Sam Harris: Religion of Peace

Right Now
I'd ask people

- To be well read and knowledgeable on these terrorist attacks
- To investigate for yourselves what core beliefs certain religions espouse
- In particular if you are religious for your religion.  If you don't agree with them, in what way are you religious?
- Are there religions that have world views that directly oppose democracy, freedom of action for men and women, and discrimiate against women or minorities.  Find out for yourself, don't take my or anybody else's word for it