The Heart of the Problem

119773145_0419a86325_m-copy-2Those seeking to condemn religion as the great source of human violence will inevitably cite the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition. Those seeking to defend religious faith and place the blame for human atrocity elsewhere will invariably respond by pointing to the Holocaust and the Gulag…

At the root of these atrocities, whether they are classified as “religious” or “secular,” we find neither religion or ideology. These atrocities and all atrocities are the product of human nature. It is our inborn inclination to pursue our own self-interest and to disregard the interests of those outside our particular group . . . that drives humans to enslave and kill. And it is because humans are born with this evil inclination that genocide and slavery have been so common in so many of our cultures for so long.

The great insight of the Judeo-Christian tradition is that we are the source of evil in the world. The great promise of the Judeo-Christian tradition is its power to inspire men to overcome evil in their hearts…

Modern ideologies such as Nazism and Communism, by contrast, did not seek to transcend human nature, but to empower it. These new ideologies turbo-charged our natural selfishness and encouraged it as the greatest good. Elevating and unleashing humanities dangerous impulses was a perilous enterprise. Genocide was as certain as the sunrise.

The point is this: Communism and Nazism were not evil ideologies that coincidentally rejected the Judeo-Christian idea. These ideologies were evil precisely because they rejected the Judeo-Christian idea.

–David Brog,
In Defense of Faith

God has not lost His patience

Dan StoryToday, people continue to rebel against God. We curse Him, ignore Him, and flaunt our disobedience. Motivated by pride, greed, and selfishness, people destroy one another and willfully abuse and pollute God’s earth…it’s amazing God has not lost His patience and destroyed all of us. Rather than condemning God for allowing evil, we should be thankful that He withholds the punishment we deserve.

-–Dan Story
Defending Your Faith

Not quick to condemn

Thomas Merton 2bDo not be too quick to condemn the man who no longer believes in God: for it is perhaps your own coldness and avarice and mediocrity and materialism and sensuality and selfishness that have killed his faith.

Thomas Merton.
Seeds of Contemplation