Saturday, September 11, 2010

Remembering

So it's been nine years since the towers fell.

I don't know if you've all been following this story about the "pastor" in Florida who'd been planning to burn the Quran to commemorate the anniversary.

I've been thinking all week about what I would say about this today. I continue to be without words to describe the disgust I feel over the very thought of this.

First of all, to do something like this in the name of Christianity offends me as a Christian. This, this is a travesty of misrepresentation. I have to ask myself, what would Jesus say about this? And how can anyone who purports himself as a man who serves a Christian God not ask himself the same question? What happened to turning the other cheek? Loving the sinner? Judging not lest ye be judged? Jesus was a peaceful man. He preached a message of love and tolerance. This? This is a disgrace to everything he stood for.

Unfortunately, misusing the ideals of Christ (or Allah, for that matter) is not a new idea. But still.

And as a human, this offends me even more. Non-fundamentalist Islam is one of the most tolerant religions out there. I don't want to be identified with David Koresh any more than they want to be identified with Al Qieda. To defile the sacred text of a whole culture in response to the actions of a group of misanthropic extremists is equally misguided.

I'm grateful they canceled the burning. I wish, though, it had been the result of thoughtful reflection, tolerance, and a desire for peace instead of at the intervention of an Imam, the President, and the Pope. I hope that we, as a people, can move forward in acceptance and consideration as we remember the past and look towards the future. As we remember the lives lost and lick our national wounds, I hope we can appreciate what is going on around us at this time. The reflection and sacrifice of Ramadan, the celebration and hope of Rosh Hashanna, the renewal and abundance of the Pagan harvest rites. I hope that we can someday share an earnest desire for peace and wholeness.

I doubt, though, that I'll ever see this in my lifetime. I hold certain beliefs about human nature, but continue to cling to a certain optimistic hope. It's all any of us can do to survive...

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