Sunday, October 28, 2012

What if schools recited Buddhist prayers?



An interesting perspective on school prayer from Gary Christenot at World Net Daily.

Excerpt:

... we were quite excited to be able to attend our first football game at Wahiawa High School [in Hawaii]. Upon our arrival at the stadium it seemed like so many other high school athletic events we had been to in many other places. The teams were warming up, the band was gathering, the ROTC was preparing to raise the colors – a pretty typical fall ritual.


Coming from a fairly traditional Southern upbringing, I was not at all initially surprised when a voice came over the PA and asked everyone to rise for the invocation. I had been through this same ritual at many other high-school events and thought nothing of it, so to our feet my wife and I stood, bowed our heads, and prepared to partake of the prayer. But to our extreme dismay, the clergyman who took the microphone and began to pray was not a Protestant minister or a Catholic priest, but a Buddhist priest who proceeded to offer up prayers and intonations to god-head figures that our tradition held to be pagan.


We were frozen in shock and incredulity! What to do? To continue to stand and observe this prayer would represent a betrayal of our own faith and imply the honoring of a pagan deity that was anathema to our beliefs. To sit would be an act of extreme rudeness and disrespect in the eyes of our Japanese hosts and neighbors, who value above all other things deference and respect in their social interactions. I am sorry to say that in the confusion of the moment we chose the easier path and elected to continue to stand in silence so as not to create a scene or ill will among those who were seated nearby.

... I would say in love to my Christian brothers and sisters, before you yearn for the imposition of prayer and similar rituals in your public schools, you might consider attending a football game at Wahiawa High School. Because unless you’re ready to endure the unwilling exposure of yourself and your children to those beliefs and practices that your own faith forswears, you have no right to insist that others sit in silence and complicity while you do the same to them. I, for one, slept better at night knowing that because Judeo-Christian prayers were not being offered at my children’s schools, I didn’t have to worry about them being confronted with Buddhist, Shinto, Wiccan, Satanic or any other prayer ritual I might find offensive.

Christenot raises an important point about the school prayer controversy. But the issues are more subtle than he seems to believe.

First, his discomfort with pagan prayer is not a Constitutional issue. The folks at Wahiawa High School have every right to say whatever prayer they want at their football games. Differences of opinion can be sorted out by the civics of school board procedures, etc. Federal judges have no place in such issues. In fact, the Establishment Clause prohibits federal interference in religion. If Christenot doesn't like pagan prayers, he can remain silent, sit down, pray a quiet Christian prayer to himself, or leave. It's a free country.

I wouldn't take offense at a Buddhist prayer (or a Jewish or Muslim prayer or whatever). I like free expression, and I don't mind hearing other people's beliefs. I don't call the police when I hear something I disagree with. I would just pray silently, giving thanks to Christ for all of His blessings. Other people's prayers don't bother me. I like it when people are free to speak and pray.

This is the salient point about the ban on school prayer. Christians don't need banal invocations during  football games to prosper. We Christians survived and even flourished under Nero and Mohammed and Henry VIII and Stalin and Hitler. We'll survive Engle v. Vitale.

The school prayer issue isn't about Christianity. The school prayer issue is an fight about freedom. It is a battle to preserve our Constitutional rights, and it is a battle against censorship. As Americans, and as Christians working for His kingdom, we should work for freedom and for the preservation of our unalienable rights.

At stake in the school prayer issue is our freedom as guaranteed by the Constitution and our unalienable right to shape our civic culture without government censorship. The fight is not ultimately about Christianity. The Lord's kingdom will prevail, bigoted court rulings, like the gates of Hell, notwithstanding.


HT: commentor Modusoperandi


19 comments:

  1. The most ironic thing about this is that Egnor is not really a Christian. The real Christians I know are modest and kind people of genuine integrity, who would never dream of lying for their religion. Egnor knows very well that his claims about the Constitution are false, but he continues to make them. He has no integrity at all. He is not a Christian.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right. Only people who agree with Anonymouse are real Christians.

      Me, I love Christ, am passionately pro-life, hold Christian culture in high regard, hate racism and anti-semitism, think that leftism and Darwinism are wrong and harmful to our society, and think that our Constitution means what it says.

      How un-Christian of me.

      Delete
    2. How un-Christian of me.

      You say those things, but your every post belies the fact that you are a lying, hate-filled sack of shit who has no regard for the truth.

      Delete
    3. Anonymouse:

      The truth is what is at issue here. This is a debate. It always pisses you guys off when people are allowed to freely disagree with you. You call them liars, deniers, creationists, etc, because you don't really have coherent arguments.

      Delete
    4. This is a public school they are funded by the government it doesn't matter what the people of the school believe they cannot due to the constitution endorse one religion over another. THAT IS A FACT!

      If this is a private school then yes they can but otherwise no they have no right to do this. Next, it doesn't matter if you have a problem with the prayer the constitution doesn't allow for it and I woud love to hear what you have to say if they didn't offer the "Our Father" before hand.

      Also the fact that you think darwinism is so dangerous scares me that you are a neurosurgeon. Do you think brains have always remained in their present state or that the human brain has not changed over time which is what the evidence points to? Is your position always pro-life? What about cases of rape or the mother or child could die? Besides in the privacy of your own home or church yeah you have every right but not in public places that are sanctioned by the US government.

      Delete
    5. So many questions, but no name. Pity.

      To answer your questions, Christophobic coward, the Constitution only prohibits a national church. Everything else is Constitutional.

      Darwinism is junk science. And my position is always pro-life.

      Delete
    6. Junk science comes mostly from religion, especially from your genocidal delusion.

      PERIOD.

      And you're pro-life for clumps of cells but not for living, breathing women.

      You are a woman-hating, bigoted scumbag, pure and simple.

      Delete
  2. "We Christians survived and even flourished under Nero and Mohammed and Henry VIII and Stalin and Hitler. We'll survive Engle v. Vitale."
    Wow. Oppression really isn't what it used to be, eh?

    "The school prayer issue isn't about Christianity. The school prayer issue is an fight about freedom."
    The freedom for the majority to have its religious views enshrined with the weight of State, normalized and approved above all other groups, using the organ of State to spread those religious views at the expense of minority religious groups, via State-mandated (or the appearance of such) prayer and the like in public schools. That's an odd kind of freedom.

    I've probably said this before, but as a Roman Catholic you should know enough about the historical treatment of your own minority in the USA that "mob rule rules" should cause you misgivings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Separation of Church and State" is a nativist and Klan slogan that has been used against the Catholic Church since the mid-19th century. You scum have never been a friend of Catholics.

      We need to obey the Constitution, which guarantees free exercise of religion, including civic exercise, and only prohibits an established national church.

      Delete
    2. "I've probably said this before, but as a Roman Catholic you should know enough about the historical treatment of your own minority in the USA that "mob rule rules" should cause you misgivings."

      Of course, just like the Irish in America with their mythological "No Irish Need Appply", the only examples MO *might* be able to draw upon would be the KKK -- which is to say, anti-Christian Democrats.

      Delete
  3. mregnor "'Separation of Church and State'" is a nativist and Klan slogan that has been used against the Catholic Church since the mid-19th century. You scum have never been a friend of Catholics."
    Yeah, take that, Establishment Clause, that protects Catholics where they're the minority as much as it prevents them from Establishing at the expense of others' Free Exercise where they're the majority!
    I read Black's opinion in Engele v Vitale and I was shocked (shocked, I tell you!) at the depth of his hatred! Seriously, it's all shifty eyes and twirling moustaches and everything! What I can't understand is how he managed to overpower the other justices, William O. Douglas, Tom C. Clark, John M. Harlan II, William J. Brennan, Jr., and Earl Warren, forcing them into the 6-1 decision. Maybe he fooled them in to thinking that the case was about protecting the rights of a minority in the face of a majority, when really it was about supporting a majority against a different minority! Moo ha-ha!
    No. I know! They were in on it! Them and the Trilateral Commission!

    "...and only prohibits an established national church."
    The 14th Amendment called. It's hurt that you forgot about it. Also, you never call.

    "We need to obey the Constitution, which guarantees free exercise of religion, including civic exercise, and only prohibits an established national church."
    State or class-mandated prayer in public school is the opposite of Free Exercise.
    Engle v. Vitale doesn't prevent Free Exercise (kids are still free to pray, freely, on their own time or, most commonly, in the seconds after being presented a pop quiz), it follows the Establishment Clause (preventing the State from Establishing who your kids to pray to or what to pray, when in public school).

    ReplyDelete
  4. "The Lord's kingdom will prevail, bigoted court rulings, like the gates of Hell, notwithstanding."

    But it won't, because the "Lord", his "kingdom" and "Hell" exist only in your head.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Theres this thing called compulsory education in this country.
    If its a public school, then it is state-sanctioned, therefore prayers have no business in it.

    If you are so obsessed with your kids praying all the time, then SEND THEM TO A PRIVATE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Little fool,
      When will you learn to *reason*?

      "State-sanctioned" is not Congress

      Delete
    2. A state, or any of its agents (like public schools) or legislative bodies, cannot do anything that the Congress cannot do, and that includes establishing religion, even in the form of blathering to a murderous thug in the sky before public sporting events hosted by a government entity like a public school.

      ALL governments, city, county, state and federal, ALL must abide by the Constitution, moron.

      That makes "state-sanctioned" attempts to try to establish religion by talking to air at a sports event the same as if Congress did it, moron.

      Delete
  6. M.Egnor "To answer your questions, Christophobic coward, the Constitution only prohibits a national church. Everything else is Constitutional."

    To be precice, what the Constitution prohibits is *both*:
    1) Congress (i.e. "the federal government") establishing any national church;
    2) Congress (i.e. "the federal government") dis-establishing any State or local church;

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ilion:

      Precisely. The Establishment Clause is a "Butt-Out of Religion" Clause applied to the feds.

      Delete
    2. Off-Topic --

      I just thought of yet another down-stream consequence that will inevitably follow from homogamy-made-law.

      As all rational persons realize, and as all honest persons admit, the very same "arguments" being used to justiy same-sex "marriage" can be -- and will be -- used to justify both incentuous marriage and group "marriage".

      We've already discussed parents "marrying" their children so as to protect the family estate from the death-tax. The "solution" to this "problem" will be to do away with the legal right of tax-free spousal inheritance.

      Once group "marriage" is legalized, criminal gangs will enter into a group "marriage" -- and then none of them can be compelled in a criminal case to testify against one another. The "solution" to this "problem" will be to do away with the legal right of spousal immunity.

      Take home message -- homogamy isn't about equality before the law (after all, the law doesn't require that prospective spouses be "straight"), it's about destroying actual marriage.

      Delete