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A Response to Christian Fundamentalist Hate Mail

This hate mail by Rick Mathes has been circulating on the Internet for years. It is a lie!
Rick Casey
Wednesday 21 December 2011

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The following is in response to a biased hate-based chain letter by Christian Fundamentalist Rick Mathes that has been circulating on the Internet for years. A colleague of mine sent it to me expecting me to support him in forwarding it on, but I sent him this reply instead.

Dear friend,

I’m sorry to have to tell you that this sadly racist message, quite unjustifiably prejudiced against Muslims, is a chain letter that has been circulating on the Internet for years.

The real battle here is against ignorance, and the ignorant radical elements in all countries who advise violence as a solution. To fight that battle, I would support those who are fighting to free Afghanistan’s government from falling back into the hands of extremist elements, and bring a free press that could help inform the Afghan public in a meaningful way. Similarly, the American people could use some education on the matter too.

I believe that the American public have been rather manipulated and misled by the corporate media on this issue, and are being driven, like sheep, using fear and ignorance, by the narrow minded owners of the media industry, instead of having an informed public dialogue on the issue, containing an awareness of history and knowledge. If all one listens to is mainstream media in the US, you are guaranteed to be much misinformed; one must seek out the roots of history and social movements to know what’s really going on.

The meaning of jihad has been perverted by a small radical element within Islam to mean war and killing of others, but the actual spiritual meaning of jihad means to strive within one’s self; ultimately, my opinion is that it means to struggle with one’s own mind, where the temptation between the "devil" and God originates. You can read more about the meaning of jihad here [http://www.thewaytotruth.org/j...]. This is just a page I found by searching the web, but I agree with its description. In other words, the words of the founder of Islam, Muhammad, never intended what the author of this message says. And I am convinced that the majority of educated Muslims would agree with me on this point.

These actions are not unique to Islam. Violent extremists have appeared in Christianity and Sikhism within my own memory, who were clearly deluded as to the true meaning of their own religion, and given over to violence to pursue their own narrow political goals.

It should be self-evident that violence begets violence; following the path of non-violence, and showing mercy and forgiveness, instead of insisting on Old Testament justice, is a difficult path, but the only one way that will cleanse the heart, and obey the inner spiritual meaning of one’s own religion, whatever that is. Unfortunately, this inner aspect of religion, which emphasizes the personal connection between an individual and God, seems to be sadly neglected by most modern priests, who are more concerned with conformance to external social norms. This forgets the call to humanity’s oneness, which is the message that all true spiritual leaders throughout history have made.

Best regards,
Rick Casey
Lafayette, Colorado

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