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RE: Holy wars.


Today's "popular culture" holds ANY fundamentalist group in disdain. It's
the notion of "I'm right, you're damned" that irks the majority of people in
Western cultures, anyway. In the U.S., the largest and most obvious
fundamentalist group is the Christian (Right), so they take the heat. The
problem with any fundamentalist (read "extremist") sect is that their faith
tells them that anyone who doesn't believe as they do is inferior -
appropriately bound for damnation of some sort. I have friends who are
"fundamentalist atheists" - and, no, that's not a oxymoron. Their faith is
science, and they believe that anyone who believes otherwise is a fool and
deserves not to be heard. The fact that the edge of their knowledge ("What
is beyond the universe as we 'see' it?") still requires faith - faith that
science will someday understand it - makes scientists not very different
than the rest of the "faithful."

The U.S., at least, has much more recent experience with fundamentalist
Christians. Those who murder physicians as part of their anti-abortion
beliefs do so with the same zeal as any Muslim fanatic flying into
buildings. They have the same belief that their actions will be rewarded in
heaven, the same conviction that their belief puts them above their victims.
It is their faith that lets them judge others so harshly. 

Fanaticism is fanaticism, regardless of which prophet (or branch of science)
drives it. We need not look back years, never mind centuries, to find it in
most modern societies.


David St.Clair

-----Original Message-----
From: Joe Erkes [mailto:erkesjoe@nycap.rr.com]
Sent: Sunday, September 15, 2002 8:31 PM
To: LIST Sinclair
Subject: Re: Holy wars.


Thanks for the note.  (I'll use your "alternate name" to avoid confusion
with Jean Paul.)  You may be right to be concerned about "blood and thunder"
Christians, but I haven't seen it personally. The small sample of

[ Excess quotations omitted. ]

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