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Old September 14th 07, 14:41   #60
First One
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Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 27,446
Re: EpDis: Passing Through Gethsemane

Part of me wonders if Theo actually had on some level recognised who Edward really was... and was keeping very coy about it.
That's certainly a possibility. I tend to take him at his own word, though, as he has no reason to lie. He tells Sheridan that they "try not to ask too many questions".

So I got the impression that he was very worried about Brother Edwards past, and something in it "catching up with him" now. Perhaps he'd left some kind of abusive situation, or was somehow a reformed criminal. Perhaps he was running away from something.

I'd say he definitely knew something was wrong, but he didn't feel it would be right to pursue what it was. He saw part of his job as reforming and forgiving, and teaching people a "better way". All he ever questioned was Edward's convictions about religion and the idea of helping mankind.

Perhaps that's really why I like this episode so much. On top of the interesting moral dilemma it leaves you to ponder, perhaps I just like seeing a dedicated, sincerely faithful group of monks who NEVER felt a need to push their religion on anyone. But they did feel a need to help people when they good.

If that's what is meant by "church leadership" then I'm all for it. If "church leadership" really means "influencing law" then that's when you'll find the secularists quite logically object. The USA was founded to a great extent by people who were fleeing either devastation in the homeland, or religious persecution.

I have no doubt the role of religion in England may be seen very differently than it is in the USA, since the USA was specifically guarding against any kind of use of a "state-endorsed religion", while at least previously in history the U.K. specificially had quite a colorful history trying to force people to believe in a religion that a King invented to break the political hold of the Vatican on his ruling of his empire.

But I won't even get started on popes, here.

But I certainly can see how religon is viewed differently by different people from different cultures. And I would tend to say that religious groups tend to be rather a lot of trouble when they get so highly organized and powerful that they are able to dictate to the leaders of countries what policies will and won't be allowed.

All I'll say about the American Catholics I know (who were not raised by "old-style catholic parents from Mexico) is that they never really overthrew the pope, as England did. Nah, they just ignore everything that he says.

A rule in my religion against birth control? Yea, I know that's technically true.... I just happen to ignore that rule because it's unrealistic.

I even recall the pope (former one, I believe) telling American Catholics that they must begin adhering to the doctrine of the church, or they should formally separate themselves into a new religion.

All I could think at the time was "you know, it's just so much easier to ignore you".

And, quite frankly, I'm sure the Vatican likes the monies donated to them by American Catholics. So he didn't push that point at all; as I recall, he said so only once, on one tour of the world.
"If we crave some cosmic purpose, then let us find ourselves a worthy goal."
-- Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot
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