Chester the Bear had a good post today about war. It got me thinking a little.
Now your religeous background might be different from mine, but bear with me as I try and make a point about it. I think their might be some common threads that tie into other theological beliefs...
Most Judeo/Christian beliefs are based on the Old Testament, and I think from what I understand, so are most Islamic beliefs as well. When the New Testament enters the picture is where the three seem to separate.
From what I can tell (and please correct me if I am wrong...) the Old Testament is based on very strict laws and codes of conduct. The reprecussions of breaking these laws are typically well described and rigidly enforced.
Examining Christian beliefs, the coming of Christ fulfilled this law, and ushered in a higher law, characterized by the 2 great commandments. To love God, and to love your neighbor. By following the example of Christ, which personifies these two ideals, the reward is well described, but perhaps not as rigidly as with the Old Testament law, or the law of Moses.
This reward is perhaps best described by the statement that "The yoke is easy and the burden is light".
The problem I see with many of the modern Christian sects, is that for most people the yoke they now carry is fraught with guilt, constant temptation from Satan and other perils of trying to be good enough.
I could probably go on and on about the reason for this, and likely will in the weeks to come, but let me finish up todays posts with this thought.
Conservative Christians generally support war as a means to fight evil. They are taught about the fight with Satan and sing songs like "Onward Christian Soldiers, marching as to war". When you try to consilidate these beliefs with the 2 great commandments, you realize that something is definitely wrong. The attitude of "Kill 'em all, and let God sort it out" is in complete opposition to "Love your Neighbor"
I think war is taught as a means to rally people together. It's the same tactic used by politicians, yet it seems more acceptable in religeon.
War, what is it good for? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!!