Archive for the Spiritual Category

Religious Symbols vs Political Racism

Posted in Atheist/Agnostic, Legal / Laws, news, Pagan, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 23, 2018 by Drogo

Geometry is not Racist

Religious symbols of Christianity and Paganism are used by racist groups like the KKK and Nazis, but their politics are so full of hate the only religion that racist groups could really claim would be an evil type like Satanism (whose practitioners are usually better behaved than racists), since most Christians and Pagans have no racial doctrines or racist dogmas. Many of us work hard to cleanse our religious practices of those among us who seek to harm others unjustly based on aggressive hostile ignorance. Religions and cultural practices thrive that are based on good-will towards others, hospitality, and celebrating life and sharing.

Simple abstract religious symbols are void of racial prejudice by their nature and historic use. Crosses, runes, spirals, or any other universal symbols are barely the property of any faith, and certainly will not be only used for evil purposes. Even the swastika should not be shunned by most people anymore, as the Nazis should have never been allowed to get the political power they did, which is really what allowed them to restrict other people from wanting to use what was previously a cross-cultural ancient symbol.

Yes racists have the right to protest too (1st Amendment to the US Constitution), but the crimes their leaders were put to death for after WW2 are still crimes no matter who does them in the future. No militarized police force of brown shirts or even SS black shirts will save racist hate from humanitarian justice. Tolerance of extreme intolerance only goes so far, for so long. The more that we are loving to each-other, the less people will want to show hate, even towards those who still want to use hate to harm others.

Blessed be, in the name of the Goddess.

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Commentary on Saint Patrick

Posted in History, Pagan, Politics, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2018 by Drogo

Reasoning behind understanding Patrick as a Roman-Briton Invader at War against Pagan Ireland

If many of us as modern commercialized Americans consider ‘The Confessions’ of St. Patrick as objectively as possible, we might compare his compelling dogmatic rhetoric to a persuasive sales pitch from a sincerely corporate sales-person, and we could forgive Patrick any lies or half-truths or religious metaphors presented as true, but are literally false (like miracles). Militant Atheists will not be so kind as many of us might. Many of us want to respect the feelings of members of our family that are conservative Christians regarding the ‘Santa Claus’ fundamentals of what is conventionally considered ‘religious faith’ or belief in super-natural mythological metaphors (aka historical fantasy fiction). While some of us might have no such restraints in criticizing a deeply flawed historically political institution descended from the Roman Empire.

One odd thing that bothers me about the text that we are expected to believe belongs to an actual historic person named St. Patrick, is that it tells us in the beginning that he is biased against the Irish because he was a foreign Roman-Briton who was taken captive by violent natives. Therefore we understand why Patrick would feel inspired by Arthurian political powers in his contemporary homeland, which were extremely bigoted against all Pagans; including Irish Gaels, and Gaelic Scots, and Scottish Picts. Much like St. Paul, St. Patrick seems to be spewing religious propaganda as a cultural war against Pagans.

Patrick (Padraig) son of Calpurnius was born around 400 AD in Roman Britain, to a family with a (male of course) line of Christian priests. At the age of 16 he was captured by a group of Irish pirates. The raiders brought Patrick to Ireland where he was enslaved and held captive for 6 years. Could a teen named Patrick have written a text like that against his kidnappers? It sure sounds convincing that someone in his position would have a ‘come to Jesus’ moment, and be dead set on getting revenge on all those he holds responsible for his abduction and enslavement. It could also be similar to the way that ‘deep states’ use propaganda to start wars (Gulf of Tonkin, Kuwaiti Babies Killed, Weapons of Mass Destruction).

Saint Patrick was more Arthurian than Irish.

Round Table vs Owning ‘Equals’

Posted in relationships, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2018 by Drogo

This essay was inspired by my love of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Round_Table

Main lessons of Arthurian Legends = Round Table: Good, Violence over Jealousy: Bad.

One of the stories within the legends focused on the Arthur, Guinevere, and Lancelot love triangle as being ‘doomed’ by its very nature; a tragic assumption which I hope to show is just the wrong way to learn from the past. It is easy for a testosterone bully or romance junky to say “the main lesson is to be faithful to the laws of marriage and the Bible, and never ‘cheat’ or ‘take’ another man’s wife”. Monogamy terms of possession are worth entire essays alone, but should envy itself truly always lead to misfortune? Celtic sensibility and wisdom of the Goddess argues against such immature interpretations. In our youth, we may be forgiven such hormonal and primal envy, but as adults we should be more considerate about the meaning of Love.

Christian culture has viewed women as possessions, and loyalty in marriage to be based entirely on spouses ‘owning’ each-other’s bodies and hearts. Owning hearts, minds, and bodies until death has often been a form of self-imposed but culturally encouraged and enforced slavery (certainly there have been blissfully happy mutual slaves that lead fairy-tale romance lives without much fighting or if there was tons it was worth it). Fidelity of monogamy often infamously leads to immoral behavior such as fits of rage and violence against people who are considered objects of jealousy. Property rights over people as cause for war was infamous in Homer’s ‘Iliad’ (Fall of Troy), and this illogical false justice has been perpetually mistaken as righteous wrath even by adults ever since.

Promises we make to each-other probably should be more attuned to who we are as people, and respect reasonable individual tendencies and realistic expectations based on natural desires and evolving social ethics. Possessing someone’s heart or even shared holding of bodily space, is not the same as ownership.

Friendship is the best basis for any relations. Can’t we all just get along? Some will always say “no”, and good luck to those making the best of things no matter the labels.

Exodus to Eden – Avalon Centers

Posted in Medical, Spiritual, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2018 by Drogo

Amazing mental treatment centers for mad people to become sane.

Equal Rights Therapy Amenities include: calming colors, healthy food, pretty music, nice smells, feminine massages (some are rough using restraints if needed), herbs, and flowers… lots of flowers. Successful treatment for anger management and substantial measurable reduction of aggression. Devices monitor hostility levels for hospital care (highest is lvl 11, ‘Hitler’ cases which require some sedation and binding).

Started as an oasis for healing mind-controlled men, run by sensible caring women devoted to re-conditioning society peacefully; but mad women welcome too!

Drop out to Eden. Turn the Doomsday Clock back! Go anti-deosil now!

Quit the war, start the life, journey to Eden Avalon Centers.

Harm none.

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Dante’s Christianity

Posted in History, Poems, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 2, 2017 by Drogo

Christian Hell, Purgatory, & Heaven

Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) was a major Italian poet for writing a very famous religious fantasy book called ‘The Divine Comedy’. Dante is called the ‘Founder of Italian’ because he wrote in Tuscan vernacular ‘vulgar’ dialect, rather than traditional or ‘proper’ Latin. Dante used a poetic literature style for his novel, which used the 3-line rhyme scheme (terza rima). Dante’s depictions of Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven have inspired a large body of religious art, and influenced Christianity itself. His ‘Divine Comedy‘ represents the medieval mind combining religious and romantic imagery. Dante’s quest for his ideal love ‘Beatrice’ represents the soul’s journey towards God. Dante draws the reader into his transcendent fictional memoir by sharing common life phases, famous and infamous names, and biographical details. Dante called it a ‘comedy’ because the plot proceeds from turmoil to a happy ending; but the story is certainly a mixture of many genres. Fans that refer to it as ‘The Inferno‘ are usually most fascinated by the horrible torture scenes in Hell. Fear of Hell is very compelling for many Christians, fed by the classic ‘fire & brimstone’ sermons. Purgatory is similar to the torture myths of Sisyphus and Prometheus, with a spiral upwards. The Garden of Eden crowns its summit. The 7 deadly sins are cleansed in Purgatory, so loving sinners can earn going to Heaven. Heaven is made of celestial rings crowned by the golden Empyrean pyramid containing the essence of God. There are 9 ring levels each with 1 final chief control center, for a total of 10 layers per realm.

Dante’s book is similar to classical adventures in Hades, where the hero visits the realm of the dead and returns to the land of the living to tell the tale; except for Catholics there are 3 realms of the dead where heavenly ‘Paradise’ seems not within the Underworld, and with Purgatory takes the place of Mount Olympus. There are references to the Roma-Amor mirror dichotomy palindrome of public duty and private love, Sunwise vs Anti-diasil spiral procession, and Plebeian Secession.

Medieval Italy had a political struggle between Guelphs and Ghibellines. Dante was part of the Guelphs, who favored the Papacy over the Holy Roman Emperor. Florence’s Guelphs split into factions around 1300: the White Guelphs and the Black Guelphs. Dante was among the White Guelphs who were exiled in 1302 by the Lord-Mayor.

The last word in each of the three canticas is stelle (“stars”).20171201_151134

Romanesque and Gothic Architecture

Posted in Historic Architecture, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on November 15, 2017 by Drogo

Cathedral Architecture of the Middle Ages

Romanesque cathedrals were based on Roman basilica designs, with thick walls and high ceilings. Engineering innovations like Gothic arches, flying buttresses, and keystone vaulting allowed for higher and larger expanses. Stain-glass windows and sculptures were integral parts of Gothic style; Cathedrals had exterior demons and interior angels. Water spout sculptures were called gargoyles and grotesques were ornaments to ‘ward off evil’ in much the same way comedic caricatures and scary decoration do at traditional festivals like Halloween. By embracing cultural demons in some form, the stress of Sin has less power for some; while scaring others into obedience, lest they get captured by demons outside. The inner sanctum of the church was where God protects his followers.

Christian Crusades

Posted in History, Military, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on November 8, 2017 by Drogo

The Christian Crusades (1095-1410) invaded Jewish and Muslim territories, and used militant terrorism on locals. In 1095 Byzantine Emperor Alexios Komnenos I requested military aid from Pope Urban II. Whether Alexios was just complaining or wanted a show of mercenary support under Byzantine control, is unclear. Alexios had restored the Empire’s finances and authority, but he still struggled with foreign enemies, particularly the migrating Turks.

At the Council of Clermont later that year, Pope Urban preached for a Crusade to free the holy lands from the infidels. By giving more military forces than Alexios requested, Urban would be in a political position of power in the East. Local clerics through-out Europe were encouraged by Pope Urban’s declaration of holy war. Peter the Hermit led thousands of mostly poor Christians out of Europe in what became known as the People’s Crusade. In 1096 Peter claimed he had a letter from Heaven telling Christians to prepare for the Apocalypse by seizing Jerusalem from the Muslims and Jews. Europe witnessed the first major anti-Semitic massacre when these Crusaders terrorized entire Jewish communities in Rhineland Germany. Before they got close to Jerusalem, the first Crusader army was ambushed by the Turks and suffered heavy losses, causing retreat. The Kings of France and England refused to join Pope Urban’s Crusade of German despotism, but many other nobles began to rally troops from various countries based on bonds of lordship, family, ethnicity, and language. Foremost amongst the noble financiers were Count Raymond IV of France; Prince Bohemond and his nephew Tancred of Norman Italy; and lastly Godfrey and his brother Baldwin I, lords of Lotharingia. Combined with a Northern French army led by lesser lords, the armies totaled about 100,000 people.

The official First Crusade army led by nobles combined with some veterans of the first peasant army, and traveled to Byzantium. Emperor Alexios cautiously welcomed them, and made the princes and counts pledge allegiance to him. This allowed both East and West Christian Empires to unite against the Turkish Sultan Kilij Arslan I. In 1097 after a Crusader siege and a Byzantine naval assault, Nicaea was captured. Crusader envoys were sent to Egypt seeking an alliance. The Turks were not unified in defense of Aleppo and Damascus. The 3-month march to Antioch was plagued by starvation, thirst, and disease. Baldwin used 100 knights to claim his own territory in Edessa. Despite losses, the Crusader army embarked on an 8-month siege stalemate of Antioch. Bohemond persuaded a tower guard to open a gate, and the Crusaders entered and massacred the many Muslims and Christians of Antioch.

Sunni Islam under the Sultan of Baghdad raised an army to recapture Antioch, led by the Iraqi general Kerbogha. Having lost thousands through desertion and starvation in the besieged city, the Crusaders attempted to negotiate surrender. This was rejected by Kerbogha, who wanted to destroy the invaders. Morale within the city was boosted when a mystic soldier claimed to have discovered the Holy Lance of Antioch. Bohemond led his Franks to break the Muslim ranks, who surprisingly retreated and abandoned the counter-siege.

Fatimid Egyptians took Jerusalem from the Turks. Raymond left Bohemond at Antioch, and led his Crusader army rapidly along the South coast to Jerusalem. After some failures, Crusaders constructed two large siege engines; the one commanded by Godfrey breached the walls in 1099. For two days the Crusaders massacred the Jews and Muslims of Jerusalem and pillaged the City of God. Godfrey further secured the Frankish position by surprising the Egyptian Shia soldiers, who retreated to Egypt. By 1100 most of the Crusaders considered their pilgrimage complete and returned to Europe, leaving behind Godfrey, Tancred, and Baldwin. Muslims mistook the Crusaders for the latest in a long line of Byzantine mercenaries (eg Vikings), rather than religious paladins bent on long term conquest and control of people property. During the 1100s Muslims realized they needed to organize their armies like the Europeans were doing, so they could level the playing field at least for defense.

Moses Maimonides was a Jewish rabbi, physician, and philosopher in Morocco and Egypt during the 1100s. Moses Maimonides wrote the tractate ‘Sanhedrin’ in which he formulated 13 Principles of Hebrew Faith. The Sanhedrin summarized his opinion of the required beliefs of Judaism; which included the exaltation of God and Moses, the coming of the Jewish Messiah, and resurrection of the dead. Maimonides also wrote about charity and prophesy.

Knights Hospitallers, aka ‘The Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem’, originated from an Amalfitan monastic Christian hospital cult in Jerusalem. After the first conquest of Jerusalem circa 1100, the Hospitallers also became a military order under Papal charter, charged with the care and defense of the Holy Land. The medieval Catholic military order endured and eventually became the modern Sovereign Military Order of Malta.

The Knights Templar were founded circa 1120 and lasted as an official Catholic paladin military order until 1312. The name ‘Templar’ comes from their full name ‘Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ in the Order of Solomon’s Temple’. In the Dark-Ages Frankish knights in the court of Charlemagne paladins (cleric-warriors) tradition based on the legends of Roland and his other knights. Templars admired the image of pauper knights helping each-other by sharing the same horse. Templar knights with their red cross on white field coat-of-arms, became famous for dedication to faith, fighting, and finance.

Teutonic Knights, aka ‘The Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem’, were a clerical military mercenary order circa 1190. The Teutonic mission was to conquer and protect German Church interests including pilgrims and hospitals. The Teutonic Order has recently been only religious since 1929, but still confers limited honorary ‘knight’ awards.

Arabic philosophy was usually more enlightened than European philosophy under Christian theology during the Middle-Ages. We in the West are still learning from Arabic sources, how to interpret our own records better. Robert of Chester translated the Arabic book of the ‘Composition of Alchemy‘ in 1144.

After the establishment of the religious military orders of Hospitallers, Templars, and Teutonic Knights; Popes were granting money and property to those who fought papal enemies, making the crusades more blatantly political and economic, although many continued to use the theology as justification for war. True believers often cannot be counted, as we cannot know what people truly thought inside. People often are torn inside about loyalties and motivations, and religions are largely based on dealing with dualities in life.

More nobles from all over Europe led campaigns with smaller groups of crusaders. The loss of Aleppo and Edessa before 1150, led to propaganda for the Second Crusade. This time kings got in on the action. King Louis VII and Conrad III led armies from France and Germany to Jerusalem and Damascus, without major victories. Preaching anti-Semitism again led to attacks on Jews including massacres in the German Rhineland and other places, amid claims that the Jews were not contributing financially to Christian society or the rescue of the Holy Land.

In the 1160-80s Islamic power changed leaders from Zengi, to Nur al-Din, and finally to the most famous Saladin. Saladin united Aleppo, Damascus, and Egypt in the Crusade era. Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I, kicked off the Third Crusade by drowning in the Saleph River on route to the Holy Land. Richard the Lionheart, King of England conquered Cyprus in 1191. Philip II of France arrived at the siege of Acre, and with the help of his best buddy Richard, the French and English won. Richard and his English army travelled South along the Mediterranean coast, and defeated Muslims near Arsuf and recaptured Jaffa. Richard the Lionheart came close to Jerusalem, but realized he lacked the resources to capture and keep the city. This marked the end of Richard’s crusading career, but Richard preferred his properties in France so Prince John ran England (see Magna Carta and ‘Legend of Robin Hood’ – 1200s).

In 1200 Pope Innocent III began preaching for the Fourth Crusade in France, England, and Germany. In Venice the Doge plotted to use the Fourth Crusade to overthrow Emperor Alexios III of Byzantium. Crusader knights arrived in Venice and were unable to pay the Venetians for a fleet, so they agreed to attack Constantinople, sack it, and share what could be looted as payment. The crusaders conquered Constantinople twice, pillaging churches, and killing nobles and many citizens. The Fourth Crusade never got near Jerusalem.

Popular ecstatic piety led to the Children’s Crusade in 1212. Large groups of young adults and children gathered, believing their innocence would enable success, where their corrupt elders had failed. Most were captured and sold into slavery. Few went on to the Holy Lands. In 1217 the Fifth Crusade was led by Andrew II of Hungary and Duke Leopold VI of Austria, against Saladin’s Ayyubid successors in Egypt and Syria.

The Sixth Crusade was a negotiated truce, supported by force and concessions. Frederick II was a Holy Roman Emperor with some cultural sympathy for Islam, and arrived at Acre in 1228. The peace treaty gave Christians most of Jerusalem and access to Acre, while the Muslims kept their sacred areas, and the Sultan of Egypt could use crusaders as mercenaries. Pope Gregory IX attacked Frederick II, ruining Christian progress in the area. Next was the Barons’ Crusade, and finally several other crusades including those in modern times.

 

[to be continued]

 

 

 

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Stupid Crusades Video War commentary by Drogo Empedocles