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Monday, March 13, 2006

This week at

Jeff Wilson looks at less peaceable moments in Buddhism in an essay about the problem of trying to identify some religions as "peaceful" and others as "violent." Jane Greer introduces the Unitarian Universalist congregation closest to the Arctic Circle. Don Skinner profiles a new community ministry in California that helps congregations minister to people with mental illnesses. And news blogger Sonja Cohen keeps on eye on UU headlines in the media.

Copyright © 2006 by Philocrites | Posted 13 March 2006 at 8:02 AM

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Doug Muder:

March 15, 2006 07:49 AM | Permalink for this comment

I was glad to see Jeff Wilson's article. I've heard a scary amount of Muslim-bashing lately, even among UU's. I can't say I was sorry to see the Dubai Ports deal fall through, but I wouldn't want to encourage some of the rhetoric that surrounded that issue.

A good book on a related issue is "Dying to Win: the strategic logic of suicide terrorism" by Robert Pape. He disconnects suicide bombing from Islam, and makes the point that suicide bombers are striving more to be heroes to their community than to reach paradise with seventy virgins.

A suicide bombing is on a continuum with any high-risk mission. If you think of why someone would sign up to be a Marine in wartime, knowing he's risking death or life-changing injury, just magnify it and you can understand a suicide bomber. Or think about the biblical story of Samson pulling the Philistine temple down on himself.

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