Show Me a Religion That has Not Produced Terrorists.

Websites of all kinds have articles these days about the religious views of the Norwegian bomb terrorist.  A most common remark by Christian apologists is he is not really a “Christian”.  A real Christian would not do this. 

There is, however, a discomforting fact.  He found in Christianity justification for killing all those innocent people. 

In this country, we are used to pointing at Muslims and saying their religion teaches them to be terrorists.  Yet, millions of Muslims will tell you the same thing Christian apologists say, “They are not true Muslims.  A true Muslim does not kill innocent people.”

Several leaders in India have been killed.  I don’t understand what goes on there, but there can be little doubt some branch of the Hindu faith played a role in these assassinations.

Religious leader Charles Colson wrote yesterday that Norway’s secularism played a big role in the terrorist bombing.  Even though the apparently guilty person claims Christianity  as his faith, it was really the work of the evil atheists.  How on earth did he come up this this nutty idea?

 Maybe its time for the coach to signal TIME OUT.  We to pause for a while and stop trying to figure out which religions are more the cause of terrorism and which are less.  

To blame the Muslim faith for 9/11 is to give a pass to a group of men who are common criminals.  It makes no more sense to blame Islam for 9/11 than it does to blame Christianity for the Norwegian tragedy.

Avatar of Jon Lindgren

About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years.
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25 Responses to Show Me a Religion That has Not Produced Terrorists.

  1. Michael Ross says:

    for all (Christian, Jew, Muslim, athiest) those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword. (Matthew 26:52)

  2. Wanna B Sure says:

    Could Ted Kacynski be considered a terrorist?

  3. entech says:

    Most religions have at some stage declared death to non-believers – part of the death sentence given to Socrates was failure to give due respect to the gods of Athens. So most religions must be terrifying to some non-members. The early Christians were considered atheists in Rome and terrorised until they struck it lucky with Constantine and thus became terrorists in their own right.

  4. Bob says:

    I agree with your point, Jon, that terrorists can come from all faiths, even non-faith, but only to a point. What you are saying is true, just like cliches are often true, but only to a point.

    The guy down in Texas Nassar, who just wanted to do a repeat of Major Hasan’s massacre in 2009, was motivated by the Koran. Its the texts you gotta watch out for I think. People who start following their dogma to the letter, can start causing havoc big time. Its just most people don’t act on everything in their texts. If they did, oh boy, we’d be in a world of hurt.

    The Koran in second to last chapter has its sermon of the sword that says to kill the infidel wherever you find them.
    Jesus said, “But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.” Luke 19:27
    For some reason, muhammedans choose to take their texts more seriously than do the other two branches of the Abrahamic texts believers, the Jews and Christians.
    It might have something to do with that the Koran is seen as the direct word of god, and the bible is seen as having been written as been inspired by god.

    I don’t think you can say that all cultures are equal, or that all religions are equal. The people of the religion of Jains go out of their way to not hurt even a lowly fly. In this time in history, I think Islam is the greater threat to the world. I agree with Sam Harris on that. To say that all religions are the same is like saying sports are all the same. Ping pong is very different than boxing.

    I think its clear that Anders Breivik is just stupid, mean, and a psychopath. In the videos he is seen walking amoungst those kids he killed like he’s walking through a pumpkin patch. He didn’t care, not at all.
    I think what’s far more interesting to study, is the gender of the shooters. The majority by far are male.

  5. Not at all to deny that evils have been perpetrated in the name of religion, but I think it’s important to note the horrid tragedies that have been perpetrated by atheist and anti-religious despots, as well.

    Also, I think it’s tempting to lump all religions together as fundamentally the same. I think they often represent very distinct ways of looking at the cosmos. In other words, I’m not sure one can deal with them as one lump. In some sense, the similarities can be superficial.

  6. Avatar of Kay Syvrud Kay Syvrud says:

    Yep Shane is right—-Joseph Stalin and Adolph Hitler were the biggest terrorist around for many years…both Atheists.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      BuffaloGal 4:08 A little correction is in order here. Adoph Hitler was a Catholic and said so publically many times. The German Catholic hierarchy said more than once they admired Hitler and accepted that he was a man of their faith.

      • He (Hitler) also loved Darwin’s “Origin of Species” with its much surpressed sub title: ‘THE PRESERVATION OF FAVOURED RACES”.

        • entech says:

          Actually you will find Darwin was banned. You may also want to check the way that the word race was used by Darwin. Finally, the second chapter of Mein Kampf ends by saying I believe I am doing God’s works by eliminating the Jews, so I can’t give the exact wording I am on holiday and without my references.

    • entech says:

      And both being atrocious for a hard held belief (and totally wrong headed belief) that what they were doing was for the ultimate benefit of mankind, the state, the nation or whatever nebulous ideal any of these people use to disguise their basic insanity. At least they did not disguise their sadistic cruelty in the guise of “I am doing this for your own good, better to burn now then burn in eternity”. It is so boring that as soon as any suggestion – as in this case – of Christianity not being a perfect representation of gentle Jesus meek and mild brings up the schoolyard cry “you are a worse one, yah, yah, yah”. No one could deny the totalitarian atrocities, or should want to but don’t forget that there have been times when it was death to believe the truth, a truth such as the earth is not the centre of the universe – RIP Bruno.
      In the words of Hugh Montefiore Arch Bishop of Birmingham “There has been more blood shed in the name of the Prince of Peace than any kingdom this world has know.”

  7. Wanna B Sure says:

    Let me quote Brevik–” If you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and God, then you are a religious Christian. Myself and many more like me do not necessarily have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and God. We do however believe in Christianity as a cultural, social identity and moral platform. This makes us Christian”.

    His definition of Christianity, and being a Christian is different than what most Christians in the US would understand to be acceptable. I do understand many Europeans think this way; “the Christian nation”of —–. There is a similarity within Judaism ; secular Jew, Observant Jew, cultural Jew, etc. I don’t know what a Jew is called when he is a cultural Jew, yet an atheist, but they are there. (I knew one quite well, and he was very vocal about being an atheist, yet claimed to be a Jew. He has since died.)
    To really understand, we need a clarification of terms. There are many contradictions in Brevik’s statement. There is also a great muddying of terms due to the confusing structure, (combining the political and sacred) of the “State Church” in many Northern European Countries. There are some that believe that structure should be dismantled. I would agree with that. The Church should stand on it’s own away from the State. The office of the minister over there is as much a political office as it is a ministerial office. Much damage to the Christian church has resulted. Baptism there is easily considered an admission to citizenship. It looks like Brevik starts from there, then runs with it.

    • entech says:

      Yes please, I have said many times – define your terms. It seems to me. for example, atheist is a term of denigration that is used by any theist to indicate someone who does not agree with them. And God, do you mean the single non divisible god of the Jews and Muslims or the or the three in one (size fits all) of the widespread and highly varied god of the differing groups all claiming to be Cristian.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Your “term of denigration that is used by (( any)) theist”. Not at all in this situation. Only a term to describe a position; a-theist. Some may use the term to insult, but I didn’t. What would an atheist rather be called? You tell me. I wouldn’t want to intentionally hurt their feelings.
        Re. “God” , in this context, it doesn’t matter what” Cristian” you are aluding to.

        • entech says:

          Ok, you are a rare thinker in this field, I should have said almost any theist. If I were to accept that designation I would say something facetious like call me what you like as long as it not too late for breakfast.
          Does this mean that you accept that Jews, Muslims an C(h)ristians define God differently?

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            “Does this mean that you accept that Jews, Muslims and Christians define God differently”? Well, they do, don’t they? Would not their understanding be different? Isn’t it pretty much about what they do, or don’t do with Jesus, the Christ?

          • entech says:

            Is this then the same God differently defined depending on the individual’s belief? For Islam, virgin birth etc. but not the son – possibly the adopted son and an important prophet. For Jews, probably a huge confusion, a prophet yes but saviour? Given the destruction of the temple and the expulsion about 40 years later not the messiah. Even Christology was a mish mash for the first four hundred years, and some would say the question is still not settled (of course, these questioners would probably not count as real Christians!). Or, is it three different but vaguely related Gods, or, perhaps in Hindu terms different aspects of the one undifferentiated God.
            I am reminded of a verse from old Khayyam (hope its right – from memory)
            Myself when young did eagerly frequent
            Doctor and Saint and heard great argument
            About it, and about;
            But evermore came in the same door as in I went.

            Which also reminds me of one of my first statements when I found this lovely blog. Until we can answer some of these questions first the answer to the question “do you believe in God?” remains as I am sorry, I do not understand the question.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            I am reminded of the parable of the sower. Yes there are stones on the side of the road. There are however two sides of the road, and two directions to go on that road, and two ends to that road. You have seen maps, but you can’t decide if they can be trusted. “Watch out for the dark eyed girls at the edge of the forrest”, for they will lure thee away.

          • entech says:

            as usual just when it gets interesting a complete change and non sequitur.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            If you can’t see the dots, you can’t connect them I guess.

          • entech says:

            Takes a lot of faith to see what is not there.

          • Wanna B Sure says:

            There you go; walking on the waters of “DeNile”. And you say it couldn’t be done.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Wanna 9:24 Are you trying to say here that if he had a “personal relationship with Jesus” he would not have done this? Or, if he was something other than a cultural Christian he would not have done it? Whatever brand of Christianity he is, he used it to justify. If he were an atheist and used that to justify it, I suppose there would be atheists who would say, “Yes, he says he is an atheist, but he is not the proper kind.” But, mostly all that doesn’t matter.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Jon; All I did was quote Brevik. I have a problem with the term “personal relationship with Jesus”. A term made popular by Neo-Evangelicals,. A purely subjective concept having nothing to do with faith. More of a “Good buddy idea”.
        As for the rest of his content, you will have to ask him what he meant. I did point out some of his inconsintencies and contradictions. I have no idea where he is coming from. He clearly dosen’t have a clear understanding of anything related to matters of faith, church, non-faith, and state, or the seperation of them.

  8. Wanna B Sure says:

    PS; Brevik also said;” I am first and formost a man of logic”. This sounds more like an Atheist. He also said he believed in the “collective conversion to the Catholic Church”. He also said that he “chose to be baptised at the age of fifteen”. This sounds more like a religious fundamentalist, or Anabaptist. More contradictions.

  9. Bob says:

    What Anders Breivik should have said was, “I am first and foremost, a murderer. A dirty stinking no good child killer. I should have shot myself in the head before I headed out the door that day.”

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