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OK.  I'll stay on the radar screen.  I think that people who claim to
be "Christian" are claiming to follow the teachings of Jesus.  And if
you hate your neighbor and think the richer you are the better you
are and behave like a pharisee, you aren't.  I don't think claiming a
word makes you anything.  I could SAY I'm a Buddhist, but the fact
is that I've never studied it, and do not really know its most basic
values and do not follow any Buddhist rites.  So saying it would not
make me one.  I don't think Jerry Falwell has much more insight
into Christianity in the sense of living out what Jesus taught than I
have of Buddhism.  I'm sure he has read the Bible, so that puts him
ahead, but reading and claiming do not make it real.
Nancy


Date sent:              Sun, 5 Oct 2003 15:08:40 -0500
Send reply to:          "T. S. Eliot Discussion forum." <[log in to unmask]>
From:                   Carrol Cox <[log in to unmask]>
Subject:                Re: OT or OT? Possible Perspectives
To:                     [log in to unmask]

Nancy Gish wrote:
>
> Dear Carrol,
>
> Hitler seemed to have imagined himself standing for Christianity (to
> take an extreme example); does one "honor" that, or is there anything at
> all in what Jesus said and did that puts some limits on the term?
> Cheers, Nancy
>

End all dispute; and fix the year precise
When British bards begin t'Immortalize?
  "Who lasts a Century can have no flaw,
"I'll hold that Wit a Classick, good in law.
  Suppose he wants a year, will you compound?
And shall we deem him Ancient, right and sound,
Or damn to all Eternity at once,
At ninety-nine, a Modern, and a Dunce?
  "We shall not quarrel for a year or two;
"By courtesy of England, he may do.
  Then, by the rule that made the Horse-tail bare,
I pluck out year by year, as hair by hair,
And melt down Ancients like a heap of Snow. . . .
        Pope, Ep. II i, 53-65)

(Incidentally, Gould. Vrba & Elledge, with "punctuated equilibrium,"
have done for history as well as biology and physiology what
calculus did
for mathematics.)

In every spectrum, there are always points off the radar screen as it
were, and Hitler is one such in several genera. His regime is not
even a
'fair' exemplum of the various fascist movements around the world
between
1919 and 1940. Not that any of them, in power or out, were very
nice, but
none projected anything to match the "Final Solution."

But the "off-the-radar-screen" description should be sparingly
evoked, or
we are back in the realm of plucking off hair by hair. Do you want to
say
that all abortion-opponents are not "real" xtians? Or . . . ?

Carrol