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The War We Fight

In my Blog Total War and Rules Of Engagement, we defined what total war is, compared to fighting with rules. Now I want to talk about the enemy, just who are we fighting? Why are we fighting? And why we must fight. Many think we are in a battle with Liberals, fighting over interpretations of the Constitution and the Rule of Law. Some believe our Battle is with Moslem Extremists, fighting over the future of Society, and Religion. Some believe it is for the future of Civilization that we fight for against the Barbarians at the gates.

In many ways it is all of these and none of these. We are fighting for Civilization, the future and rule of law against Chaos and Evil.

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Many times I have asked if you do not follow a moral code outside yourself, how do you know it is right? From inside, everyman is right in his own eyes, but God sees the intent of the heart.  If we use a subjective moral code it is entirely dependent on how we feel on any day. Moral Relativism. A humanist view of right and wrong. If it feels good do it! That is an internal moral code, SELF, EGO being the arbiter of right and wrong and nothing else. This is also the rule of the fittest, might makes right and if I can get away with it, then it is ok. If this is the moral code you follow, then Jeffery Dahmer and Hannibal Letcher were the supreme beings, and were absolutely right to do what they did; literally the top of the food chain.

Any true moral guide has to be from outside ourselves to be a guide, a sign we can follow, a path we can teach others, a constant right and wrong, and to be truly moral it must be consistent, not dependent upon changing factors. Society to be good must have set rules for conduct amongst the members of that Society. This is the purpose of laws.

“The majority having, as has been shewed, upon men's first uniting into society, the whole power of the community naturally in them, may employ all that power in making laws for the community from time to time, and executing those laws by officers of their own appointing; and then the form of the government is a perfect democracy...

John Locke. The Second Treatise of Civil Government. 1690.

From the Great Philosophers of the 17th century (The Age of Reason), we have what they called the “pyramid of Truth”

1 – God’s Law/Absolute Truth

2 – Natural Law/Apparent/Objective Truth

3 – Civil Law/Relative/Subjective Truth

From this we see that they understood different types of Truth, one Gods Law is Absolute Truth, you may disagree that there is a God but you have to admit there is “Absolute Truth” one that does not change, is not dependent on conditions or beliefs, one that is true at all times. Oxygen does exist.

The second is Natures Laws or Apparent or Objective Truth. What we see, or observe. If you drop something it will fall down. At one time people believed that the speed of falling was dependent on weight, a feather fell slower than a cannon ball; therefore a Bullet should fall slower than a cannon ball and a one pound weight should fall slower than a 3 pound ball. Science and experimentation changed that view point. Objective truth is dependent on what we know and observe; this type of truth is not absolute.

Then the Third is Civil law, a relative or subjective truth. What is true today may not be true tomorrow; it is a truth dependent on conditions, situations, place or feelings. Killing a man is murder, unless it is in self-defense, or maybe the heat of passion, or even at the order of the state as in a death penalty situation or war. Killing being murder is now a conditional truth.

Morals are the same. They are either absolute or they are not really morals but a set of conditional rules that have no meaning. Something that makes us believe we are good people, that are to be cast off when they become inconvenient. To bee absolute they must be from outside ourselves.

We are like chameleons, we take our hue and the color of our moral character, from those who are around us.

John Locke

Yes those we associate with will influence our morals, although for the most part we tend to associate with those who have moral codes similar to ours, but this does show a problem with the “Professional Politician” he loses his values after a time in Washington. Situational ethics.

We cannot totally blame the politicians and the Washington establishment though, for in truth our elected officials are just a reflection of the people who vote for them, if we want moral politicians we must be a moral people, if we want to quibble over the meaning of “is” so will our officials.

“We make men without chests and expect from them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.”

― C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man

What is the moral code we are teaching our children? We are in a total war for the future of civilization; we must use every tool at our disposal to fight evil in high places. We are fighting Chaos and Evil in high places, we are fighting for the Souls of our Children.

God Bless.

Just my thoughts for today.

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    This raises a question to mind. Are we born with a conscious? Do we instinctively know the difference between right and wrong? If so, then are those without a conscious suffering from a birth defect? Hugh, I have also known someone who committed murder, and I would say that guy was very defective! Immoral in all ways...

    • This is the question between the three sides of the religious arguments.

      1.  Man is born Good and needs nothing else, by nature people are good, they are taught to be bad by the others in their environment. That is the Humanist and the Buddhist  view.

      2. People are born partially bad and partially good, yet they have the ability to overcome their nature, because they are basically good. That is the Pelagian or Arminian viewpoint. Man can choose to be good or bad.

      3. People are born into sin, they are dead in their sin, unable to do real good, and they have no choice but are bad by nature. They must be taught to be good. Only through the Holy Spirit can man do good. That is the Reformed, Augustinian or Calvinist view.

      You ask “then are those without a conscious suffering from a birth defect?” by the first two viewpoints your answer would be yes. By the third view the answer is no. All men are born with a God shaped hole in their spirit, not just some people; how we try to fill that hole makes the difference. Under the concept of “Total Depravity” (Reformed Theology; see “Bondage of Will” by Martin Luther.) all people are born sinners. Not as bad or evil as we can be but our whole body from our minds to our toes there is no good in us.

      Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.

      1 John 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

      Genesis 6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

      Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

      Some people make no effort to fill the hole, or they try to fill it with themselves, that still leaves a hole, but making the attempt to fill it, is our attempts to be good, some do a better job of it than others but no one can successfully fill it by themselves. Only God can fill it completely. Often our ego gets in the way and we still try to pack ourselves into it. Those who make no effort to fill it are those without a conscience. (I would recommend reading all of Ephesians 2 for a better explanation.)

      Ephesians 2:5, 8-9 [5] Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) ... [8] For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: [9] Not of works, lest any man should boast.

      Does that answer your question?

  • Hugh, Your "Just my thought for today" as always and all ways thoughtful and well articulated. I appreciate the insight-fullness of what you have written.

    How does an individual know what their doing is wrong or by your actions you are hurting another. One answer for me  is if it makes me feel terrible chances are that I have hurt or about to hurt another. 

    I have always been an individual who questioned authority, laws in general and status quo. I end up following most laws by the state out of respect for the law or simply to avoid state punishment. I was in jail for one night in my early 20's and found that experience one I did not want to repeat.

    As you known I am not a biblical follower nor one who is involved in any religious following. I have always had internal alarm bells that sound for anyone that holds themselves as a possible cultist.

    I do believe that "looking beyond self, outside ones self" invaluable on many levels. Most importantly for me is when I feel selfish, self absorbed in my own problems. The lesson I have learned is that my sh%t is not as bad as others may find themselves dealing with. Wisdom of living as long as I have also informs me that good and bad times ebbs and flows -- in other words what seems like a bucket full of dirt one day can be roses next week. 

    I recall during my working career that my director and VP wanted me to place a colleague in a situation that would make her ineffective. I felt badly at the thought. I did not listen to what I was feeling. I was aware that my director and VP would think I was just great for carrying out their political ploy. That thought made me feel bad inside. I did what they wanted and I have had to live with my actions for over 30+ years. I did learn something but it was at the expense of another. No justification. Because I was uncomfortable with what my director and VP wanted I should have told them it was wrong and I find someone else to be their bad dog. 

    I obviously do not believe that a higher power, a God outside myself is necessary but to care about others and not be self absorbed, me, me kind of thing is crucial.

    I must have a chip in  my head that switches on to warnings of don't do that it would be wrong :). Sorta a compassionate circuit -- that times in my life I ignored the signal and each time I always have regretted. I have a stubborn side and it takes often being hit in the head by a 2 x 4 to change my ways.

    The worst thing is to be a traitor to oneself and if one betrays themselves then they will surely betray others. 

    • What you say may work for you. I have known men that have no moral compass at all. One of them saw nothing wrong with beating a man so bad he ended up in a wheel chair, raped the man’s wife, and then stole his motorcycle because he needed a ride back. He ended up with 30 years in prison. I knew another that killed three women because they did not want to sleep with him. A man who to all appearances seemed like a nice guy, great with kids, dependable, easy to get along with. He got life in a German prison. He did not see anything wrong with his actions. I have known others over the years who’s actions were less dramatic but just as ruthless towards other people. No moral sense, no acknowledgement of right or wrong. I sat through their trials, escorted them to prison, one went to a mental institution for the criminally insane.

      Your work story does prove a point of mine: We are like chameleons, we take our hue and the color of our moral character, from those who are around us. - John Locke

      Never trust a man’s better nature he may not have one.

      While your method may work for you, it still leaves an important question unanswered. How do we teach those values to our Children? 

      • Hugh, You teach by example. Some teach violence and others teach you the basics. My Mother was in many ways a broken person. She had some good but quick, too quick, to resort to capital punishment against us kids. She was raised in the same type of way. My father on the other hand was a ticking time bomb and seemed to me to lay in wait for an incident to occur where he could pounce with fury and the opportunity seemed to me to satisfy him. His pent up anger being now released. Sam, my father, was a minister, he read his bible daily. And yes the interpretation of scripture was unique to him. He also worked in the coal mine.

        I do try not to be judgmental with regards to his belief but once in awhile a judgment slips through. Some folks have more of a difficult time fighting their own demons and handling, navigating what life dishes out.

        I do believe kids are born for the most part good and innocent. It is a parents choice to reinforce the good as the child grows up being a "chameleon" in life. Some kids are born broken. For example a sociopath. Parents are helpless  to change and no matter what good home life they provide their offspring is a sociopath and will act from that. There is no known cure. Are they evil? Their actions are. The sociopaths urges may be managed at times but eventually the urge to kill is so overwhelming that they can not fight it. Would being brought up in an environment that was based in a healthy home with teaching by the ten commandment alter to sociopath. Not likely.

        The mysteries of life more times boggles the mind. I do not believe that a punishment by God results in physical nor mental problems. A person who lives their life as basically good, takes care of their body and mind they end up with cancer or other health issues. Are these problems some retribution of a angry God  No it is just life. A child who is born a sociopath is this a punishment for the parents not living a spiritual life in accordance to the dictates of a higher power? No.

        Early years of a child is important and lessons throughout their time on earth as well. 

        I do believe that unless an adult deals with their sh&it then no matter what else they do the sh&it will be there as well. 

        No babies, most.I believe are born basically good souls. Do they known right from wrong automatically? Of course not. Adults must teach.

        • I was reading a case study on people who had faced abuse.

          There is a small class of people that survive almost anything and handle recovery amazingly well.  In the article I read they were labeled 'invulnerables'.  The one thing they all had in common was a strong sense of 'right and wrong'.

          There are people with no right and wrong, but I haven't found anything that shows they are better for it, or that the world they live in is.  They usually are called sociopaths.

  • Hugh, You have put into words something I have tried to convey to family and friends for years.  Had I been closer to God and reading my bible the way I should, I would never have had the delema  that I have faced. 

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