Sweden Insanity – Welcome Muslims…Deport Christians

Sweden

SWEDEN PLANS TO DEPORT CHRISTIAN ACTRESS … TO IRAN!

Ministry group says Oslo violating U.N. treaty

by BOB UNRUH

Sweden is violating a United Nations human-rights treaty in its attempt to deport a prominent Iranian actress who revealed her conversion from Islam to Christianity after arriving in the European nation, according to a charity that defends persecuted Christians worldwide.

Aideen Strandsson would face punishment and prison, possibly even rape and death, if returned to the mullah-led Islamic nation, argues the U.K.-based Barnabas Fund.

The group cites the 1951 United Nations Refugee Convention, which states “a refugee should not be returned to a country where they face serious threats to their life or freedom.”

In Strandsson’s case, the international Christian ministry said, she undoubtedly would face prison – at a minimum – for her conversion to Christianity.

“In fact, Iranian prisons are a particularly dangerous environment for any woman,” the organization said.

“Rape has been widely used against female prisoners since the 1979 Islamic revolution on the pretext that women offenders must not be allowed to remain virgins, as this could result in them being admitted to paradise. Added to this, as both an apostate from Islam and a nationally known actress who has appeared in films and on TV, Miss Strandsson is likely to be viewed as a significant embarrassment to the Iranian government. As such, her life will be in serious danger,” the Barnabas Fund said.

“Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians” tells of the perseverance and courage of men and women who suffer because of their faith in Jesus Christ

The organization said the actress had a conversion experience after watching a video in Iran of a woman being stoned to death.

“I decided at that moment I don’t want to be a Muslim anymore,” she said.

Strandsson said that shortly after that, she had a dramatic spiritual encounter.

“I had a dream about Jesus. He was sitting near me and he took my hand,” she said.

But she, like many others in Iran, kept her faith quiet, allowing word of it to come out only after she safely was in Sweden.

At that point, in 2014, she asked for a public baptism.

“I want to have a baptism in public because I want to say I am not afraid anymore I am free, I am Christian. I want everyone to know about that,” she explained, according to Barnabas.

Now, however, Swedish officials “have told Aideen that becoming a Christian was ‘her decision’ and now it’s ‘her problem’ and not theirs.”

“At her asylum hearing, a Swedish migration official even told her it would not be as bad for her in Iran as she is expecting because it would only be six months in prison,” Barnabas said.

The U.N. convention disallows sending a refugee back to a nation where “they face serious threats to their life or freedom.”

The planned deportation is part of Sweden’s attempt to tamp down the backlash to its admission of huge numbers of migrants from Muslim nations.

“In a worrying new trend, which may affect Christians in other European countries which have recently allowed in large numbers of migrants, decisions on asylum appear to be influenced not just by human rights but also by government targets, with little or no recognition of the specific persecution faced by Christian minorities in countries such as Iran,” Barnabas Fund said.

A lawyer working on her case, Gabriel Donner, told Barnabas Fund the government officials “do not care” about injuries they may create.

“They have promised the public in Sweden that they will deport more people than before and so they have to fill the quota.”

Donner said many Swedish officials are so ignorant of religion and Christianity they assume it’s simply a lifestyle choice.

“A convert says, ‘I converted because of the love I received from Jesus Christ,’ and they almost mockingly ask the convert, ‘What do you mean by love?’ They don’t understand the message in the Bible. It’s just completely alien to them,” he said.

Donner estimated there are 8,000 asylum-seekers now hiding in Sweden to avoid deportation.

“Persecuted: The Global Assault on Christians” tells of the perseverance and courage of men and women who suffer because of their faith in Jesus Christ

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2017/08/country-plans-to-deport-christian-actress-to-iran/#wZ8iMvdBCoi7oVsS.99

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Inside Israel’s Doomsday Spaces

ADAM REYNOLDS Pup Cultural Center Kibbutz Kfar Aza

GIMME SHELTER

‘Architecture of An Existential Threat’ provides a visually compelling insight to the cultural and geographical perspective of bomb shelters in Israel today.

Architecture of An Existential Threat provides a visually compelling insight to the cultural and geographical perspective of bomb shelters in Israel today. Adam Reynolds refers to these ubiquitous bomb shelters as “doomsday spaces.” He approaches these interior spaces by capturing the importance of proportion and scale.

These photographs reveal the normalcy of survival in the most extreme situations. His perspective sheds light on the a country constantly under threat and the beauty in versatile efforts make these spaces residential. The bomb shelters were created in 1948 as a protection tactic against threats from their enemies.

Adam Reynolds is a documentary photographer with a background in architectural photography and journalism with a strong emphasis on the Middle East. In this series his goal was to provide a the viewer an opportunity to reflect and contemplate the emotions felt in these empty spaces.

ADAM REYNOLDS

Apartment Complex in Kiryat Smona

ADAM REYNOLDS

Mosque in The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

ADAM REYNOLDS

Children’s Play Area, Primary school in Hurfeish

ADAM REYNOLDS

Dance Studio

ADAM REYNOLDS

Community Centre

ADAM REYNOLDS

Conference Room in Knesset Jerusalem

ADAM REYNOLDS

Recreation Room, Student Dormitories in The University of Haifa

http://www.thedailybeast.com/inside-israels-doomsday-spaces

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MALLOCH: Europa, Eurabia and the Last man

Europe is full of ‘Last men’ (and perhaps women, I suppose we are now forced to say, given the incessant demand for political correctness).

Why is this so and who will come to dwell in these territories we have hitherto called — home?

We are not talking about some imaginary seven kingdoms, as in the legendary but fictional television series, Game of Thrones, either. The point of contention is about a real place, with real peoples, and real nations that have existed for centuries on end, perhaps thousands of years—called Europa.

Trends in immigration suggest what can only be termed, a self-imposed European death wish.

Look at any demographic map, preferably an interactive one.

Of the 7.5 billion people presently on this earth, the vast majority, mostly in the Southern hemisphere, and who are generally poor and backward, are trying to get to the Northern hemisphere, where there are greater opportunities and overly generous welfare states. In recent polls 7 out 10 people from these lands say, given the chance, they want to flee their plight.

The last decade has seen more refugees, migrants and economic immigrants than at any point in human history: tens, if not hundreds of millions. They are dying in transit, drowning on the Mediterranean Sea and suffocating in the back of trucks, as was the case, yet again in Texas this past week.

Human trafficking is big business. The International Organization for Migration estimates that more than 1,000,000 migrants arrived in Europe by sea in each of the last three years, and tens if not hundreds of thousands more, by land.

The numbers are astounding and only increasing. Some 5,000 new migrants arrive on the shores of Italy alone every day.

The U.S. estimates it is now populated by millions of illegal and undocumented immigrants. In fact, about one-fourth of the 42.4 million foreign-born people living in the United States today are illegal immigrants – this amounts to roughly 10.5 million, according to an objective study by the Center for Immigration Studies.

Geostrategists cannot comprehend billions (yes, potentially billions) of people moving from South to North. They can’t comprehend the risk or the total effects of this — a world without borders. Yet it is something that globalist political leaders and flat worlders actually seek and actively endorse.

Europe will change. This will happen… is happening, in our lifetimes, with globalist elites endorsing it as benign or even laudatory. The ‘anywhere’ crowd with no attachment to place, custom or religion, favor such open borders.

The ‘somewhere’ folks who still have some degree of loyalty to national identity, tradition and religion do not share the same attitude. As the global elites get their way we witness the end of Europe and the emergence of the Last man.

And who is this Last man?

The Last man (in German, der letzte Mensch), is a description used by the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche in Thus Spoke Zarathustra to describe men tired of life, who take no risks, and seek only comfort and idle security.

They exist without purpose or direction. Their lives are pacifist and comfortable. There is no longer any distinction between strength and weakness, excellence and mediocrity. Social conflict and challenges are defined out of existence. Everyone lives equally and in a “superficial” harmony of no consequence. There is no originality or flourishing social trends or ideas, merely fashions. There is no innovation or creativity. Individuality and thinking are suppressed.

According to Nietzsche, the Last man is the goal that modern society and western European civilization have set for themselves. Those writers who have sought to warn about this have failed to date.

Nietzsche warned that the society of the Last man could be too barren and decadent to support the growth of healthy human life or great individuals. The Last man is only possible by mankind having bred an apathetic person who is unable to dream, who are unwilling to take risks, and simply earn their meager living and try to keep warm.

Even having children or concern for future generations is too much of a challenge and inconvenience. Leadership is nothing more than a greater degree of things and creature comfort. They are willing to make any temporary compromise so as to maintain their ease.

The Last man, Nietzsche predicted, would be our response to the problem of nihilism.

Is Europe today ever closer to what Nietzsche described? Has European decadence and anomie, adrift from its original moorings and spirituality, and more and more awash in a sea of unassimilated and perhaps unassimilable immigrants, with yet more on the way, brought us to this state?

Others have described the onslaught of Islamist immigrants who come to the west to exploit its wealth and flee the scourge of poverty and war of the places they have vacated. They bring with them cultures of hate and the practice of terror as they find no way to immanentize their eschaton and instead end up hating the very new places they inhabit and the way of life that has sustained it for centuries…

more…

http://www.breitbart.com/london/2017/07/30/malloch-europa-eurabia-last-man/

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The limits of tolerance

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A religious worldview cannot expect the same kinds of tolerance as racial, gender, or sexual identities. Here’s why

Paul Russell is professor of philosophy at the University of British Columbia in Canada, and professor of philosophy and director of the Gothenburg Responsibility Project at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. His latest book is The Limits of Free Will (2017).

Throughout the Western world, the political ‘Left’ is in disarray. It is fragmented, rudderless and lacks a coherent plan to stem the tide of ‘populism’, nationalism and xenophobia. Identity politics and questions of religion have done much to fuel both the Right’s xenophobic tendencies, and the Left’s fragmentation. The ‘Old Left’ embraced a simple Manichean worldview of good versus evil: the enemy was easily identified (the rich and powerful, who oppressed the poor and the weak), and its agenda was simple and clear (redistribution of wealth and greater economic equality).

In contrast, the ‘New Left’ has introduced multiple new agendas – and enemies. The ‘Old Left’, it is said, was insensitive about issues affecting a range of marginalised groups, who identify themselves along lines of race, gender and sexual orientation. The three-legged stool of the Old Left – ‘liberty, equality and fraternity’ – was never very secure, but when fraternity was replaced by the demands of group identity, little stability remained.

Among other things, the core Old-Left liberal value of religious tolerance has now come into confrontation with the identity politics of the New Left. Indeed, one central strand of New Left thinking regards all talk of (liberal) ‘religious tolerance’ as mere camouflage concealing deep and systematic disrespect and unequal treatment of religious minorities. From this perspective, what needs priority is not so much the right of individuals to choose their religion as they see fit and without interference, but the rights of religious groups to secure and preserve their standing and identity in a society that would otherwise marginalise them.

How should the Left understand and practise religious tolerance in the face of the emphasis that various groups now place on the value of their religious identities? This is a question that has, of course, become tangled up with overlapping issues, such as racism, anti-immigrant sentiment, and various forms of nationalist xenophobia. But we should keep these issues separate and focus on the difficult enough question of the relationship between religious toleration and identity politics. Much of the (New) Left analysis, which concentrates on the language and agendas of identity politics, has paid too little attention to a very significant distinction that falls within the various identities that have been proposed as a basis for rectifying various forms of social injustice and unequal treatment: the distinction between ideological and non-ideological identity commitments. A lack of clarity about this basic divide within identity politics has led to a serious failure to provide credible understanding of what tolerance requires when we are confronted with questions about the rights of different religious groups to be treated equally and with respect.

Some claim there is an analogy between the identity politics of religion and the issues that arise with other excluded groups based on race, gender, sexual orientation, disability and the like. What is supposed to hold these divergent identities together is that the groups in question have been treated unequally, or do not receive adequate recognition in the existing social and legal system. Religious groups require protection to secure their rights and recognition of their particular interests in practising their religion. Yet, however plausible these claims might be, there is a key distinction that needs to be made between identities that are based on what can be broadly described as ideological or value-ladencommitments, and those that do not carry any such baggage. This distinction is essential to understanding the role of (religious) toleration in a liberal, democratic society…

more…

https://aeon.co/essays/why-religious-identities-are-not-immune-to-robust-criticism

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Why Is the Vatican So Obsessed With Gluten?

If it’s really the body of Christ, what does it matter if it’s gluten free? The answer is, well, complicated.

The Catholic Church this week gave people who are gluten-free another chance to do their favorite thing—talk about being gluten-free.

That’s because news surfaced that the Roman Catholic Church does not allow gluten-free communion wafers to be used as part of the sacrament of communion. Roman Catholics are known for their belief that during the Eucharist the host (the communion wafers or bread) is transubstantiated into the body of Christ. For the more sarcastically minded, this easily could raise the snarky accusation: If it’s really the body of Christ, what does it matter if it’s gluten free? Or, as Homer Simpson put it: If that’s the blood of Jesus, that guy was really wasted. Is the Vatican admitting that transubstantiation doesn’t really work? (Spoiler alert: No)

In some ways this is not, in fact, a new development. The recent statement reinforces instructions given by the Joseph Ratzinger-headed Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in 2004. But we are still left with the question: Why is the Vatican so obsessed with gluten?

Bread has played a central role in Christianity from the beginning. At the Last Supper, as relayed by the Gospel writers, Jesus turns to his disciples and identifies the bread they are eating as his body and the wine as his blood. In John 6, he goes even further: He identifies his body as the bread of life and says, quite explicitly, “unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you” (John 6:53). Even to ancient audiences this sounded a bit like cannibalism.

Among Christians there are some differences of opinion about what this means. Is the consumption of bread a symbolic act that gestures to the sacrifice of Jesus in a metaphorical way? Or does something happen to the bread and wine that mystically transforms them into the body and blood or Jesus? For Roman Catholics the answer is very much the latter, and they refer to the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist as the “Real Presence.”

Roman Catholics (and some other denominations like Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists and Orthodox Christians, who have slightly different views) believe that when the bread and wine are consecrated by the priest during the service they become different in substance but retain what are known as the accidents of the bread and wine (their taste, smell, texture, and appearance). This, by the way, is why the Church isn’t troubled by the fact that the bread and wine taste the same after consecration as they do before. How is this possible? It’s a mystery of the faith. To outsiders that might sound like a cop-out, but the distinction between substance and accidents comes from the Greek philosopher Aristotle. It’s not something that the Catholic Church invented. Moreover, this is perfectly rational because you’re dealing with a supreme omnipotent deity who doesn’t want you to develop a taste for human blood.

(Complete side bar: In the Middle Ages, around the time that the Real Presence became a frequent topic of theological conversation, people began to report what are known as Eucharistic miracles – incidents in which the host would start bleeding, or (worse?) be transformed into congealed blood, or fly about in the air evading capture like a  snitch in quidditch. There are some stories from a medieval German book called the Dialogue on Miracles in which the host was transformed into raw flesh, an image of crucified Jesus, or an infant before reverting back into a host.)

Given the importance of the Eucharist in Catholicism, it’s easy to see why bread would be such a sticking point. After all, if it is only bread that becomes the body of Jesus, what elemental properties of bread need to be present in the communion wafer in order for transubstantiation to work and for Christ to become really present in it?…

more…

http://www.thedailybeast.com/why-is-the-vatican-so-obsessed-with-gluten

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‘Here we are all the same’

Resultado de imagem para ‘Here we are all the same’ Photo by Tim Dirven/Panos

Photo by Tim Dirven/Panos

The US Constitution guaranteed freedom of religion, but the fight for religious equality was only just beginning

by Richard D Brown is a board of trustees distinguished professor of history, emeritus, at the University of Connecticut. His latest book is Self-Evident Truths: Contesting Equal Rights from the Revolution to the Civil War (2017). He lives in eastern Connecticut.

The age of revolution brought an enlightened political ideology to the modern world. Among its many achievements, none faces greater global challenges than freedom of religion. Today, it seems almost unthinkable that any deeply religious people, whether in the Middle East or the United States, would create constitutions, bills of rights and statutes that would not only guarantee their own freedom of conscience, but also the religious faith of others. Why, we wonder, and how, did revolutionary-era Americans choose to adopt a radical regime of religious freedom?

Their reasons did not rely on any idealistic consensus that religion must be separate from politics and instead owed everything to their deep suspicion of power in the hands of flawed humanity. Informed by centuries of European history, revolutionary-era Americans believed that governments empowered to coerce belief – long the common European practice – became tyrannical. History proved that, where religion was concerned, governments resorted to coercion. Consequently, to provide a barrier against tyranny, key American patriots believed that protecting religious freedom was vital.

But old ways died hard. Leaders in every American state argued that religious observance was not only a divine commandment, but also a bulwark of social and political order. As a result, defenders of Protestant faiths battled over religious taxation almost everywhere, and debated whether to maintain established churches. At independence in 1776, nine of the 13 colonies were supporting state churches; yet by 1860, the US would become a country of almost complete religious freedom. How did this happen?

As early as June 1776, Virginia’s Declaration of Rights laid down the principle that ‘all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion’. This language, composed by George Washington’s neighbour George Mason appealed to Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was at work drafting a state constitution and, in it, he echoed Mason’s doctrine with a provision that ‘All persons shall have full and free liberty of religious opinion; nor shall any be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious institution’. Virginia’s long-established Anglican Churchmen fiercely opposed this proposed disestablishment of their church. Arrayed against them, the state’s numerous Baptists and Presbyterians favoured the measure. Still, many patriots thought that ending state support for the Anglican Church would plunge Virginia into immorality and infidelity – magnifying the very disorder that the revolution provoked. The reformers’ rejoinder – that Pennsylvania, which possessed no religious establishment and no state support for religion, was not awash in immorality or infidelity – did not convince defenders of the status quo.

The result in Virginia in 1776 was compromise. Virginia suspended support for Episcopal priests and exempted Presbyterians and Baptists from religious taxes. Followers of other faiths and non-believers must still support the Episcopal Church, though they were not required to attend its services. The Episcopal Church also kept its monopoly of marriage fees and revenues from land dedicated to poor relief. This arrangement briefly stilled sectarian conflict. Three years later, when Jefferson won election as governor in 1779, he and James Madison attacked the remaining Episcopal establishment by sponsoring a statute of religious freedom. Though the legislature tabled their statute, it voted to end tax support for the Episcopal Church.

A few years later, after the war ended, governor Patrick Henry, supported by Episcopalians and Methodists, proposed using taxes to pay clergy of major Protestant denominations. Leading Virginians such as John Marshall and Washington, the national hero, thought Henry’s proposed state support for Protestantism reasonable. Baptists and Deists, however – coming from opposite ends of the religious spectrum – mobilised and blocked it with petitions carrying an unprecedented 11,000 signatures. Exploiting this momentum, Madison seized the offensive, bringing Jefferson’s Statute for Religious Freedom to a victorious vote in the Virginia legislature.

Virginia’s Statute for Religious Freedom expressed the revolutionary generation’s most fully developed commitment to equal religious rights. God, the statute read, had ‘created the mind free’. Indeed ‘the Holy author of our religion’ rejected earthly coercion. The law proclaimed that ‘our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry’. As Madison explained, if government could establish one religion, government could establish any religion. Just before Christmas 1785, Jefferson’s bill passed by a vote of 74 to 20. Afterwards, when a delegate proposed that ‘the Holy author of our religion’ be identified as ‘Jesus Christ’, a great majority of the delegates voted that down. The law, Jefferson wrote, aimed to be ‘universal’; it should protect ‘the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mahometan, the Hindoo, and infidel of every denomination’…

more…

https://aeon.co/essays/the-true-story-of-the-fight-for-religious-equality-in-the-us

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