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dogemperor [userpic]
The lure of fundamentalism

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]catvincent)

Crossposted from my LJ:

Another fine piece by Sara Robinson over at Orcinus:

"Sometimes our random wanders around the Web can turn up some pretty exotic gems. This one ranks among the sparklier baubles I've found stuck in the strands this year.

It's a 2005 article by Dr. Salman Akhtar, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Delhi who's also (quite clearly) a capable and insightful philosopher. In the article, he lays out his understandings of why people turn to fundamentalism -- though his conclusions are probably extensible to most other forms of authoritarianism as well.

"Sanity," says Akhtar, "has its own burdens, and fundamentalism is the treatment for those burdens." His argument spins on six specific burdens of sanity:

-- Factual uncertainty: the need to carry on even when we don't know all the facts
-- Conceptual complexity: Our ability to interpret the world, and choose our path among many
-- Moral ambiguity: There are almost no one-size-fits-all laws and rules. How do we make the punishment suit the crime?
-- Cultural impurity: Human culture is a mix of many influences, which can make establishing one's own identity difficult
-- Personal responsibility: Sometimes, shit happens. Sometimes, it's our fault. How do we accurately assign responsibility?
-- The confrontation of our own mortality: Death comes to us all, though we almost compulsively deny it.

We all struggle with these issues all our lives. They always demand a great deal of us; in fact, they're the questions that call us on to psychological and spiritual maturity, and the degree of wisdom we can bring to bear in answering them may be a valid measure of our overall success as human beings. But, for many who find they simply can't cope, fundamentalism offers the security of reassurance and pat answers:

Fundamentalism, in a literal, narrow, ethnocentric and megalomanic manner takes a religious tract and interprets this in an extremely narrow, megalomanic and grandiose way, seeking to offer a world of simplicity, lack of personal responsibility, immortality, purity and simplicity. These are notions of children. This is how two-year-old and three-year-old children think. This is not how a grown-up, adult person thinks. Fundamentalism turns us from adults into children, turns us from individual units of flesh, psyche and spirit, thinking, pulsating, changing, constantly struggling with choices, decisions, tragedies, losses, mishaps, triumphs and victories – constantly in conflict, constantly in the inner Kurukshetra. Fundamentalism removes us from such war, from such complexity, from personal responsibility, from impurity, from handling looking death right up front in the eyes and then adopting to live in a more responsible manner."

Go read the rest, as well as the original article.

Current Mood: tired
Current Music: Drone Zone: [SomaFM]
dogemperor [userpic]
Separation of church and state doesn't seem to apply to the LDS


Or, note the breathtaking hypocrisy of the group that almost single handedly defeated the ERA in the West claiming that it maintains a neutral stance on political issues:


Also, speaking as someone who's suffered under Mitt Romney's tenure as governor: he's a terrible leader. Just terrible. The only governor I've seen who was worse was Paul "three-quarters of a million in personal debt" Cellucci, who ran on a platform of fiscal responsibility....

dogemperor [userpic]
NBC won't show Madonna on the cross: source


Thu Oct 19, 4:28 PM ET
From All Reuters News

After weeks of controversy, NBC has decided not to show pop star Madonna suspended from a giant cross and wearing a crown of thorns when the network airs a special of her "Confessions" tour, a source close to the organization of the event said on Thursday.

The source spoke after NBC announced it had revised the two-hour concert special, which airs November 22, but did not elaborate on what changes would be made.

The source said the portion of the "Live to Tell" song in which Madonna sings suspended from a giant cross and wearing a crown of thorns will not be shown in the broadcast. Instead, cameras will cut to other shots or images while Madonna is on the cross. She steps away from the cross to finish the song.

The special was filmed during her performance at Wembley Stadium in London during her "Confessions" tour.

Madonna, who is an executive producer of the special, initially insisted that her appearance on the cross, which had been a controversial centerpiece of her stage performance, be included in the NBC special.

But after complaints from Christian groups, a number of NBC affiliate stations expressed uneasiness to the network about carrying the broadcast if it included Madonna singing from the cross.

Madonna, who has been making headlines over her efforts to adopt a Malawi orphan, has defended her mock crucifixion scene, saying it was not meant to be "anti-Christian, sacrilegious or blasphemous."

A spokeswoman for the pop star could not immediately be reached for comment.

Current Mood: annoyed
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