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Europe Returning to Pagan Roots
NewsMax ^ | May 30, 2003 | Fr. Mike Reilly

Posted on 05/30/2003 9:55:54 PM PDT by Hugenot

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To: Antoninus
Roman virtues:
Auctoritas: "Spiritual Authority" The sense of one's social standing, built up through experience, Pietas, and Industria.

Comitas: "Humor" Ease of manner, courtesy, openness, and friendliness.

Clementia: "Mercy" Mildness and gentleness.

Dignitas: "Dignity" A sense of self-worth, personal pride.

Firmitas: "Tenacity" Strength of mind, the ability to stick to one's purpose.

Frugalitas: "Frugalness" Economy and simplicity of style, without being miserly.

Gravitas: "Gravity" A sense of the importance of the matter at hand, responsibility and earnestness.  

Honestas: "Respectibility" The image that one presents as a respectable member of society.

Humanitas: "Humanity" Refinement, civilization, learning, and being cultured.

Industria: "Industriousness" Hard work.

Pietas: "Dutifulness" More than religious piety; a respect for the natural order socially, politically, and religiously. Includes the ideas of patriotism and devotion to others.

Prudentia: "Prudence" Foresight, wisdom, and personal discretion.

Salubritas: "Wholesomeness" Health and cleanliness.

Severitas: "Sternness" Gravity, self-control.

Veritas: "Truthfulness" Honesty in dealing with others.

301 posted on 06/01/2003 6:07:17 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: TheAngryClam
Compare this to the preservation of works from the archaic period of Greece (600-500 BC) well into the Empire. Rome once again triumphs over anything that the Christians could accomplish.

Ok, it's clear that you've got some sort of romantic attachment to the ancients which I can understand to a certain extent. I have a similar attachment, although I recognize the deficiencies of ancient civilization--in particular, the absurdities of the various pagan religions. However, it's also clear that you have a visceral prejudice against "Christians" that I do not share.

It's pretty clear I'm a Catholic. Care to state for the record what faith you belong to?
302 posted on 06/01/2003 7:55:16 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: TheAngryClam
It was only through turning to the traditions of pagan Rome

Civilization in western Europe was largely saved by Irish Catholic priests and nuns, who kept whatever light of learning, history and Christianity not extinguished during the dark ages burning mostly my the luck of the fact that Ireland was pretty much the end of the world. If it had been any easier to get to, these good folks would have suffered the fate of those on the continent.

These priests, nuns, and monks converted the Germanic tribes to Christianity, recreated the first centers of learning, and basically saved Europe from paganism. If it weren't for them, we would never have had a "Western Civilization" that looks anything like it did or does.

The roots of our Republican (at least in theory) form of government are largely rooted in a melange of Christianity, Celtic emphasis on local control and value of the individual citizen, remnants of Roman law, and Anglo Saxon culture that were uniquely found in England. Medieval society was just a little bit different their than in the rest of Europe. Moreover, because of the English Channel, the Rennassaince took longer to find it's way their, and all of the Medieval emphasis on local government (relatively speaking) and a multiplicity of centers of authority lasted in England longer than in the rest of Europe (many of whose princes absolutely adored the Roman Imperial emphasis on centralized government.)

303 posted on 06/01/2003 8:06:15 PM PDT by jscd3
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To: Antoninus
Wll, I can certainly name one thing for The AngryClan that Christianity accomplished that the Roman Empire didn't - it survived into the 21th century, converting it's enemies along the way.

Also, unlike the Roman Empire, which experianced esentially a single period of expansion, and then contraction, and then extinction, the Church has managed to survive a number of seamingly near-death experiances, always coming back stronger than before.

By the way, I'm Catholic myself. For what it's worth, it looks like we may be heading for one of those periodic historical dark times again.

304 posted on 06/01/2003 8:14:03 PM PDT by jscd3
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To: ffusco
Not the high point of their civilization, but not the genocide that some would believe.

Well, what would you call it when the death penalty is levied against someone for holding tenaciously to a particular religious belief? Imagine, for instance, if a European country today effectively outlawed Judaism and declared that anyone who admitted to being a Jew was subject to the death penalty. I don't think even Nazi Germany went that far.

And the early Christians weren't saints either- Many burned temples, upset graves, vandalized public works, disrupted government functions, incited violence, failed to pay taxes, Were unpatriotic and opennly hostile to Roman Laws. Today we call them martyrs.

Are you sure you're a Catholic? Sure, there were odd occasions when Christians were excessive in seeking retribution against pagans who had persecuted them. But to paint all the early Christians with such a broad brush is simply ridiculous. And to confound such vengeful individuals with the actual martyrs who went to innocent and saintly deaths, is beyond simply incorrect. It's intellectually dishonest.

As for the claim that early Christians were "unpatriotic," that is unfounded. Even before the days of Constantine, there is evidence that there were many Christians in the Roman army. I'm not even sure what you mean by "unpatriotic" in terms of the Empire. Did they worship the cult of the Emperor? No. But would you in their position?

Furthermore, I'm not sure where you get the notion that they didn't pay taxes, considering that Christ himself urged them to, "Render unto Caesar..."

They were the anti-war protesters, ACLU, Greenpeace and PETA of their day.

Somehow, I don't think it's the Holy Spirit that motivates those groups. And I sincerely doubt they'll be around 2000 years hence. Do you believe that the Holy Spirit motivated the early Christians?
305 posted on 06/01/2003 8:22:25 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: ffusco
Christianity is a wonderful thing but as far as science, medicine and technology goes, a bunch of Gothic Churches simply doesn't compare- And that's the way they wanted it. Christianity is about working toward a serene afterlife and being a good neighbor.

You've got, seemingly, an overly simplistic understanding of Christianity and Christendom. To be honest, there was a time when I felt the same way in terms of viewing everything classical as infinitely superior to all things Medieval. But here's the nub: If you were a commander in the field, would you prefer to be a Roman general facing medieval heavy cavalry, or a Norman general facing a Roman legion?

The Greeks invented the modern mind- everthing after that - even how we "Know" God is thanks to them. Otherwise we would live in a world of random events without connection.

Given this statement, I'd have to ask you who had the greater impact on the Western world: Plato or Jesus?
306 posted on 06/01/2003 8:37:09 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: ffusco
The idea that God didn't interfere with his divine creation was neccessary for men of science to do their work, but it was antithetical to The Church- that's why Galileo needed to recant!

Actually, it was my understanding that Galileo simply refused to admit that his ideas were theories and that's what got him into trouble with the Church. You'll note that Copernicus, who held many of the same views, had no problems with the Church.
307 posted on 06/01/2003 8:44:04 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: ffusco
By canon I mean the official party line of the Church- that The Earth is the center of the solar system.

Why, then, didn't Copernicus have the same problem as the G-man?
308 posted on 06/01/2003 8:47:00 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: jscd3
753 BCE to 1453 CE is 2100 years.

Rome still is ahead of Christianity for longevity.

And I'm not even cheating and counting the popes.
309 posted on 06/01/2003 8:47:05 PM PDT by TheAngryClam (Nil igitur mors est ad nos neque pertinet hilum/quandoquidem natura animi mortalis habetur)
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To: jscd3
By the way, I'm Catholic myself. For what it's worth, it looks like we may be heading for one of those periodic historical dark times again.

Great post. I only disagree slightly with this comment. We've been in a dark time for 30 years now, I'd reckon. I think we hit bottom last year. It's always darkest before the dawn....
310 posted on 06/01/2003 8:54:58 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: TheAngryClam
753 BCE to 1453 CE is 2100 years.

Sorry, but you don't get to count the 1250 odd years from Constantine on as it was corrupted by those awful Christians 306-1453. Your timeline ends at the Milvian Bridge, I'm afraid...

Alright, if you want the two years of Julian the Apostate, I'll throw those in too.
311 posted on 06/01/2003 8:58:02 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: TheAngryClam
If you read what I posted, I said survived into the 21st century.

Moreover, the only thing that the Roman Empire has conquered in the last 1000 years has been the imagination of kings, dictators, Fascists, and more than a few historians.

Strictly speaking, though, the Roman empire was dead long before 1453 - Mohammed II might have been proud of conquering the scarecrow remains of Constantinople, but I doubt that he considered himself finishing off the Roman Empire. After all, the Roman empire without Rome (or even any part of the west) would be, like, well Christianity without the Pope...;>)

312 posted on 06/01/2003 9:00:57 PM PDT by jscd3
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To: jscd3; TheAngryClam
Strictly speaking, though, the Roman empire was dead long before 1453 - Mohammed II might have been proud of conquering the scarecrow remains of Constantinople, but I doubt that he considered himself finishing off the Roman Empire.

Considering the animus this fellow has toward Christianity, I don't understand how he counts ANY of the years following the advent of the Christian emperors in his reckoning. It's especially odd in that the last defenders of Constantinople--Venetians, Genoese, and Spaniards for the most part--were there in defense of Christianity, not some long-dead ideal of pagan Roman glory.
313 posted on 06/01/2003 9:09:08 PM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: Antoninus
Christainity was one new reilgeon among dozens practiced throughout the Empire and for the most part thet were all tolerated. Mithraism from Persia, the olympian gods, Isis from Egypt, Sol Invicta (early monotheism) Sibylline oracles. Rome was a cosmopolitan place like America is today, with many different peoples and beliefs.

Augustus Ceasar decreed that Synogogues were invioble and Jews were exempt from appearing in court on the Sabbeth.

Romans persecuted Christains because they felt that they alone possessed the truth ( which at that time was hardly self-evident) and that All other religeons, even state ones were false. ( Christian intolerance) They refused to observe ritual acts (think Pledge of Allegiance)

This all changed by the 3-4th centuries when Roman Christain writers claimed that Rome had been divinely ordained, only the name of the divinity changed.

You are welcome to think what you want about me and question my faith but its rather un-Christain of you.
314 posted on 06/01/2003 9:16:49 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: Antoninus
Nothing odd at all, by then The former Romans were all Christian. Even the Pope is refered to as the Pontiff Maximus as had been the Emperors as protectors of the faith in pagan times.
315 posted on 06/01/2003 9:19:05 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: Antoninus
As for the claim that early Christians were "unpatriotic," that is unfounded. Even before the days of Constantine, there is evidence that there were many Christians in the Roman army. I'm not even sure what you mean by "unpatriotic" in terms of the Empire. Did they worship the cult of the Emperor? No. But would you in their position?


I watched a program on the History Channel or the Discovery Channel a while back about the Spear of Destiny/Longinus/etc. In it, they told the story of Saint Morris, a Roman soldier who faithfully served the empire, commanding a legion of Christians. He and his men served the empire loyally, but that apparently wasn't good enough for the emperor, who wanted them to worship him. Saint Morris made a vow that, while he can't worship a false god, he will serve the empire loyally. Wasn't good enough for the emperor, apparently, as Morris and many of his men were put to death (Or were they all executed? I can't remember).

Point is, you're right. Not all Christians were patriotic of, course, but not all were unpatriotic, either. Morris is a prime example of a Christian who faithfully served the empire, and even went to his death without a fight. All he asked of the Roman Empire in return for his loyalty was that he be free to worship as he so choosed. To much to ask of the "enlightened" Roman Empire, apparently.
316 posted on 06/01/2003 9:22:38 PM PDT by Green Knight (Looking forward to seeing Jeb stepping over Hillary's rotting political corpse in '08.)
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To: Antoninus
That's a loaded question.
317 posted on 06/01/2003 9:26:03 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: Antoninus
Why, then, didn't Copernicus have the same problem as the G-man?

Maybe it was his self-effacing attitude.
318 posted on 06/01/2003 9:28:26 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: Green Knight
DUCKING...

I am the "token Pagan" on this website. Long history, but I do not force my views upon others.

So far, both sides have given decent arguments.

319 posted on 06/01/2003 9:33:41 PM PDT by Hunble
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To: Hugenot
Bump
320 posted on 06/01/2003 9:34:16 PM PDT by Fiddlstix (http://www.ourgangnet.net)
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To: Hunble
Ducking what? :P All I did was point out that there WERE patriotic Christians in the Roman Empire. And in that instance, they got the shaft big-time. Otherwise, I got nothing to say about the rest of the thread as I'm not a history major or anything of the sort. Just pointing out a specific story which I heard a while back (Oughta pop the tape I made into the vcr and refresh my memory).
321 posted on 06/01/2003 9:38:42 PM PDT by Green Knight (Looking forward to seeing Jeb stepping over Hillary's rotting political corpse in '08.)
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To: Green Knight
Unpatriotic in the sense that they didn't participate in the myriad state rituals and devotion to the Emperor.


How do you feel about people who refuse to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance? I suspect the Romans felt the same way.
322 posted on 06/01/2003 9:41:35 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: ffusco
Well, I guess that's where you and I part ways, then, because I don't view the two as comparable. Big difference between uttering the phrase "One nation under God" and forcing people to worship the Emperor as if he were a god. And whatever I may think of people who don't say the Pledge of Allegiance, I don't think they should be forced to do so. They certainly don't deserve to die for not doing so, the way Morris and his men died even though in every other way they were completely loyal to the empire.
323 posted on 06/01/2003 9:48:13 PM PDT by Green Knight (Looking forward to seeing Jeb stepping over Hillary's rotting political corpse in '08.)
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To: Green Knight
I don't agree with their hard line either, but tried to put it in perspective. And as for persecuting people who don't stand for the Pof A- it wouldn't be Christian!

324 posted on 06/01/2003 9:54:36 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: ffusco
The Pof A-? Wuzzat? Oops, Pledge of Allegiance. Nevermind.
325 posted on 06/01/2003 10:07:46 PM PDT by Green Knight (Looking forward to seeing Jeb stepping over Hillary's rotting political corpse in '08.)
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To: jscd3
Wait for the various protestant freepers to descend upon you for that one.
326 posted on 06/01/2003 10:46:27 PM PDT by TheAngryClam (Nil igitur mors est ad nos neque pertinet hilum/quandoquidem natura animi mortalis habetur)
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To: TheAngryClam
Freeper Schism?
327 posted on 06/01/2003 10:52:46 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: ffusco
Which one?

The Great Scism is probably the Libertarian/Republican divide, with the protestant reformation being the Go Pat Go people and the general other people who hate the GOP for being too, well, willing to be successful.
328 posted on 06/01/2003 11:50:27 PM PDT by TheAngryClam (Nil igitur mors est ad nos neque pertinet hilum/quandoquidem natura animi mortalis habetur)
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To: ffusco
Christainity was one new reilgeon among dozens practiced throughout the Empire and for the most part thet were all tolerated.

As mentioned above, Christianity was "tolerated" for about 120 out of 250 years. And this toleration was a kind of soft persecution like that under Trajan where Roman agents were enjoined not to seek out Christians, but any who were presented to them and admitted that they were Christians, could be subject to the death penalty. That's not exactly "tolerance" in any modern sence of the word.

Mithraism from Persia, the olympian gods, Isis from Egypt, Sol Invicta (early monotheism) Sibylline oracles. Rome was a cosmopolitan place like America is today, with many different peoples and beliefs.

All the cults you mention above did not possess the exclusive character of Christianity. The Romans used their polytheistic religion as a tool of cultural assimilation when they annexed neighboring kingdoms. To keep everybody happy, they simply annexed that nation's pantheon into their own. As is well known, they were not successful in doing this in Judea and this led to a string of horrible civil wars in that region.

As Christianity is sprung from Judaism, it's not surprising that they'd share this exclusivity that prevented them from worshiping false gods. That 1st Commandment is a real bear.

Augustus Ceasar decreed that Synogogues were invioble and Jews were exempt from appearing in court on the Sabbeth.

Augustus was incredibly savvy and knew when to press the issue and when to keep his powder dry. This was a trait that was shared by depressingly few of his successors.

Romans persecuted Christains because they felt that they alone possessed the truth ( which at that time was hardly self-evident) and that All other religeons, even state ones were false.

You mean like the cult of the Emperor, for instance? That was the big no-no for most Christians and where many got in trouble.

They refused to observe ritual acts (think Pledge of Allegiance) .

Sorry, but it's impossible to compare the mandatory worship of a god-on-earth to the voluntary reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance in this country.

You are welcome to think what you want about me and question my faith but its rather un-Christain of you.

One simple answer will clear any questions up. You have been transported in time to the court of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius--one of the five good emperors by most accounts. You, as the Catholic you are, have been accused of being a Christian and are asked to sacrifice to the Roman gods and renounce your faith. If you do not do so, the result is scorging and beheading. What would you do?
329 posted on 06/02/2003 10:51:50 AM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: ffusco
That's a loaded question.

Sure it is. However, I have no trouble answering it for myself. God coming to earth in human form, revealing the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven to simple men, allowing himself to be killed and rising from the dead after three days--these things had a much greater impact on Western civilization than Plato's writings.

This is not to take anything away from Plato, mind you. He was a genius with many brilliant, radical, and revolutionary ideas, no doubt about that. And it is commonly recognized that Plato's ideas helped lay the groundwork for Christianity. Indeed, I think some medieval Christian scholars considered Plato sort of a gentile prophet.
330 posted on 06/02/2003 10:57:56 AM PDT by Antoninus (In hoc signo, vinces )
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To: Antoninus
Excellent reply to my evasive answer, BTW. I would have to say that Christ has been the biggest spiritual inspirational figure in history, and Plato perhaps the biggest intellectual inspiration in History. Plato WAS to the mind what Christ IS to the soul.
331 posted on 06/02/2003 12:58:17 PM PDT by ffusco (Maecilius Fuscus, Governor of Longovicium , Manchester, England. 238-244 AD)
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To: freedom moose
hi f m,
just read your response to my post. Maybe post- Christian would be more accurate. I have not been to Europe, only have read much on how pagan practices are gaining in popularity around Europe. Of course I do not mean the church, that is, the body of believers in Christ, are not there, of course not. There are true Christians everywhere, but I just mean in the secular world of popular "religion".

Here in America, there are lots of true Christians everywhere. But in the secular culture, it is very very post Christian and is definately becoming pagan in belief (worldview) in many areas, especially here in CA. I live in the most secular part of America. Eastern new age "spirituality" is really gaining ground here.
332 posted on 06/02/2003 1:58:04 PM PDT by Gal.5:1 (yes I am a Gal, no I'm not 51 or 5'1")
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To: Gal.5:1
especially here in CA. I live in the most secular part of America. Eastern new age "spirituality" is really gaining ground here.
yeah, i hear that alot about CA from friends. I guess it's been that way for a while. :(
are they still playing with crystals? or was that just a bad stereotype of CA new-agers?
333 posted on 06/02/2003 2:09:04 PM PDT by freedom moose
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To: Hugenot
"Aetas parentum peior avis tulit
nos nequiores, mox daturos
progeniem vitiosiorem."


--Ovid

Our fathers, viler than our grandfathers
begat us who are even viler
and we shall bring for a progeny more degenerate still.
334 posted on 06/03/2003 6:11:15 AM PDT by TheWillardHotel
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To: freedom moose
crystals are so 80's, lol. Right now yoga is huge. It is everywhere. In ads, in beauty supply shops, in stores, at the "YMCA", at the recreation center, in the hospitals, in the public schools. It is being marketed to everyone, young and old as either exercise or a health therapy. Also being taught in schools and seen around the community are traditional American Indian religion (spirits, totem poles, dreamcatchers, medicine wheel), honoring 'Mother Earth', saving the Earth, Mexican pre-Christian (pagan) ceremonies involving spirits and the dead etc, Astrology. I know it is everywhere and just the tip of the iceberg , but it's all so popular here. Eastern spirituality disguised as new innovative ways of achieving health and awareness are the main thing I've noticed lately around here (SF bay area). Here's a letter I wrote to the editor; of course it did not get published. It was way too long, anyway.

May 21, 2003

Editor, San Mateo Times,

I am a former resident of Burlingame, and a former student of Lincoln school; I graduated in 1979. I went on to B.I.S., Mills , CSM and CA State. I am now raising my three children at home full time in San Mateo.

I have many memories of Lincoln school, but the best is the memory of our beloved P.E. teacher Rudy Benton, or “Mr. B.” He was so much fun. Where else would I have learned sports, square dancing, obstacle courses and “The Hustle”? (Remember disco?) I will always remember Mr. B. In the 70’s, P.E. was not about finding inner peace and ‘going into yourself’.

Except for some ‘values clarification’ lessons, which attempted to get me to challenge the values I was learning at home and in private institutions, my public education at Lincoln was neutral in the areas of philosophy, worldview and religion. As a student of government sponsored, tax funded schooling, I received my religious education at home, and also in church. But that was 1979.

Today I noticed the front page story “P.E. Goes Hip” in the Times newspaper. I am outraged (but not surprised) that Lincoln school is teaching Yoga to the students. The fact is, Yoga is basically an application of the Hindu theistic philosophy, or belief system. Therefore Lincoln school is in effect teaching eastern religion to the children of Burlingame with the help of two private organizations, Sinnyo-En Temple and Mills-Peninsula Health Services, “in partnership”.

This public-private partnership method of attempting to bypass the Constitution and teach children to believe in the world’s various religions or the neo-pagan, ecumenical “new faith” of global universalism or “spirituality”, purposely continues the deconstruction of our nation’s Judeo-Christian founding, heritage and worldview.

San Mateo, CA
335 posted on 06/03/2003 10:58:18 AM PDT by Gal.5:1 (yes I am a Gal, no I'm not 51 or 5'1")
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Comment #336 Removed by Moderator

To: NIHIL; Admin Moderator
Oh, you're lame. Try again, flame boy.

You're just a troll, and one of Satan's patsies. How frustrating it must be not to have his playbook.


Pathetic.

Admin, watch for this clown which (not who) signed up 8-2-03.
337 posted on 08/02/2003 10:19:05 PM PDT by petuniasevan ("There are lies, damned lies, and statistics." -Mark Twain)
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