http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2007/gods.warriors/ by Christiane Amanpour

This report is about the three religions and the warriors that die in their name. Also, it shows how all three religions converge at this one place and the battle for domination over that land and even greater world domination is why so many are willing to die for their fundamentalist views.

All I can say is peace, people, peace. The warriors live on because they kill off the peacemakers. And so far, ummm I agree after tonight’s episode, as most Americans feel, fundamentalist Muslims are scary as shit. Distinctly because being a woman, a feminist, an American and opinionated I am their enemy. I think reading reading Sweetness in the Belly helped me understand true jihad and the beliefs of most Muslims, jihad is a personal battle with morality. (totally Catholic philosophy as well by the way) To live a virtuous life is to fight a war within yourself. Living a religious life in a material world is a personal jihad, for example. Being modest in an immodest worl. NOT a holy war against all Non-Muslims. I learned a lot from the program and tonight I can't wait for the finale on Christians.

I think the great book to be written and made movies about and translated into all languages will be the book that tells the stories of all three religions specifically side by side intertwined so that maybe the three warring factions will see that our differences are less than our similarities and how politics (politicians pushing themselves forward as leaders) plays the catalyst in most of the disagreements.

I see the prayers, the mosques, churches, the prayer beads, the prophets, the languages, the veils, the devotion, the spirit, the FAMILY….all the same. Abraham’s children just can’t get along. And our love of God isn’t strong enough to see love before hate, forgiveness before revenge. My own personal jihad or morality test is to practice peaceful responses in threats to my family, instead of revenge. My personality is to take a person out who would dare touch a hair on someone I love. My insides tell me that I have the strength of the heavens on my side to destroy who that destroys my own. But recognizing that nature - fighting and controlling it and recognizing its destructive nature on not just that offender, but on myself and on the world around me is my ultimate goal. Luckily, I haven't been truly tested on that front and hopefully I won't any time soon.

I think the only way to reject radicalization and fundamentalists on all sides of this holy battle is to find strength and the message of peace and justice in those like MLK, Malcolm X at the end of his life, Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, the Dalai Lama and the original true words of Jesus, not misconstrued messages of fighting.

On a more personal and pleasant note, I got into a Masters in Education program at SUNY at Buffalo today. I’ll be earning my degree through their distance learning program. I’m gonna be a teacher, I’m gonna be a teacher! I’m just praying that the money thing works out and that aid comes my way. My classes start on Monday so I’m very excited. I think what will be most important is planning and time management.

Peace and Love

fran

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