Marianne Williamson for Congress

“Getting the money out of politics is the greatest moral challenge of our generation”

Marianne Williamson is running for Congress in the 33rd Congressional District in California. I live in Washington State but I am still a supporter. Why? Because money in politics is a national issue. With your support Marianne Williamson is serving as a vanguard to show what will be possible in your district in the future.

Marianne Williamson is NEARING THE FINISH LINE of an incredible campaign for election to the U.S. House of Representatives. In order to pay for the media that will make her competitive with the other leading candidates, her campaign MUST RAISE OVER 1 MILLION DOLLARS in the next few weeks!

I’m calling on you to join me and Americans all over the U.S. in a MASSIVE GRASSROOTS CROWDFUND. I’m urging everyone I know to SUPPORT MARIANNE’S CAMPAIGN BY CONTRIBUTING RIGHT NOW, regardless of where you live and vote.

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How to Call Police


George Phillips, an elderly man, from Meridian, Mississippi,was going up to bed, when his wife told him that he’d left the light on in the garden shed, which she could see from the bedroom window. George opened the back door to go turn off the light, but saw that there were people in the shed stealing things.

He phoned the police, who asked “Is someone in your house?”
He said “No,” but some people are breaking into my garden shed and stealing from me.

Then the police dispatcher said “All patrols are busy. You should lock your doors and an officer will be along when one is available.”

George said, “Okay.”

He hung up the phone and counted to 30. Then he phoned the police again.

“Hello, I just called you a few seconds ago because there were people stealing things from my shed… Well, you don’t have to worry about them now because I just shot and killed them both, the dogs are eating them right now.” and he hung up.

Within five minutes, six Police Cars, a SWAT Team, a Helicopter, two Fire Trucks, a Paramedic, and an Ambulance showed up at the Phillips’ residence, and caught the burglars red-handed.

One of the Policemen said to George, “I thought you said that you’d shot them!”
George said, “I thought you said there was nobody available!”

( True Story ) I LOVE IT!
Don’t mess with old people.
Live well, laugh often, love much!!!

Interpretation of Islamic Traditions

Karen indicates that the Muslim law for women to cover their face in public and remain separated in other facilities is a distortion of Muslim principles as presented by Muhammad. According her reference in the Qur’an the passages that are used to justify this practice were related to how Muhammad should treat his wives after an event that put them at risk.

According to the vision, Muhammad’s wives were not to remarry after his death and were to be marked so everyone would know them as Muhammad’s wives.

The separation was again a vision that was a directive for treating Muhammad’s wives. Muhammad was seeing his followers in the huts he shared with his wives. During the period of this same event that put his wives as risk, the vision was to separate them from the people who had come to see Muhammad. It was for their own safety and respect and was not intended to be a generalized practice for all women.

Like Christian religious traditions, Muslim traditions were subjected to factionalized interpretation after their prophet Muhammad died. It is these interpretations by the various denominations by both Christians and Muslims related to their respective religious traditions that have contributed to the intolerance for each by each.

The message Karen is presenting is that as Christians we need to revisit and live by the teachings of Jesus with a critical eye divorced for millennia of institutional church doctrine. As should the Muslims return to the principles presented in the visions of Muhammad divorced from the centuries of denominational and cultural interpretation. In this way can we come to a common understanding of each other as one human race.

Just Warfare

As I am reading Muhammad, it seems as though the differences in cultural values between Muslims and Americans are an issue that may be difficult to reconcile. During Muhammad’s life, after he and many of those who had converted to Islam were forced out of Mecca, they exercised a common tribal practice of raiding caravans. At that time, raiding rival tribes was considered an acceptable practice for those who had lost other means of making a living. This also included taking captives for ransom.

Although Islam was a religion of peace, Muhammad had a vision that allowed war if the rival or opponent had wronged Muslims. This made it acceptable for Muhammad to raid caravans from Mecca as tribes of Mecca had wronged the Muslims by expelling them from their tribe.

This sets up two scenarios that make it difficult to reconcile warfare between Americans and Muslims:

  • If an appropriate (and this is one of the keys) Muslim leader determines that the Americans have wronged Muslims it is not only acceptable but the duty of the Muslim to wage war on the Americans.
  • Taking hostages for ransom is considered an acceptable practice as a means of income.
  • With Americans identifying the Muslims they are fighting as terrorists, the policy is to not to negotiate resulting in a conundrum.

    Islam and Monotheistic Pluralism

    Islam embraces one God (monotheism) but not one religious tradition. Muhammad’s visions showed that all prophets of God including Moses, Jesus, Ishmael, Isaac, and Jacob are valid as are their teachings. In fact, Karen points out that believing in one faith could lead to degeneration placing belief in the tradition of that faith over belief in God.

    An infidel, or unbeliever, is commonly understood by Westerners to be someone who is not a Muslim. An infidel (kafir in Arabic language) is more accurately defined as one who does not believe in the one God. That does not include Christians, Jews and others who are known instead as the “People of the Book” in the Qur’an. An infidel refers more to atheists and polytheists. One could not be a Muslim without believing in Jesus.

    The common Western understanding of an infidel is most likely an understanding that is portrayed by some political factions associated with Muslims to advance their own agenda; an agenda that is not consistent with Islamic principles and exploits general Western ignorance of Islam.

    Muslims’ Mutual Defense Law

    In Muhammad, Karen describes the historical context that gave rise to the apparent Muslim law to require Muslims give shelter to other Muslims and in so doing also swear to defend them against their enemies.

    When Muhammad had been expelled from Mecca, tribes in Medina agreed to help him and his converts. They believed these people would ultimately provide some material gain for their tribes. At the time they were not Muslims although many converted. As part of this agreement to aid Muhammad and the Muslims by taking them into their city, they also agreed to defend them against their former tribes of Mecca. The tribes of Medina providing the aid had no quarrel of their own with the tribes of Mecca. This event undoubtedly set the stage to establish the law of mutual defense. Two other aspects of this event that seems to be overlooked; the requirement for both parties to be completely honest and for the party that has wronged the Muslim to do so as an act of preventing them from practicing their religion.

    It is easy to see how unscrupulous people hiding behind the Muslim laws could force a devout Muslim to fight with him against what is presented as an enemy that is trying to prevent the Muslim from practicing their religion.

    Understanding Islam

    A few weeks ago a colleague mentioned that a good friend of his was being deployed to Afghanistan. In preparation they receive a culture briefing. In this case much of it centered around how Islamic religion has shaped the current circumstances.

    He related to me how the briefer explained that Islamic law required a homeowner to welcome anyone who asked for shelter and to defend them while they are guests. The Taliban reportedly take advantage of this Islamic law by imposing themselves on Afghanistan people and once they are guests use the law to press them into the service to “defend” them against the infidel Americans and their allies.

    In 2005 when my brother was deployed to Afghanistan I read two books, Islam by Charles Adams and Afghanistan by Stephen Tanner to get a better understanding Afghan culture and religion. What my colleague told me didn’t strike me as being particularly accurate. To gain a better understanding of Islamic religion within the context of the culture from which it evolved I bought and started reading Muhummad by Karen Armstrong. Karen is a highly respected scholar and author of comparative religion with particular expertise on the Muslim tradition.

    The book starts by giving an account of Bedouin culture and religion at the time of Muhummad’s birth. Many religious scholars, Karen included, believe this approach is important to have a correct understanding of the religion being studied and how it has evolved.

    Muhummad was born into a newly developing commerce culture centered around the individual that has evolved from a harsh nomadic lifestyle with little or no value for religion centered around the tribe.

    As I read this description I found a striking resemblance of Karen’s description of the newly developing commerce culture and America’s evolution of Capitalism that evolved during the mid-19th century. In both cases, moral standards started to break down, emphasis on family (or the tribe) shifted to emphasis on the individual, and the younger generation found little value in religious traditions. I’m not sure where Karen will be taking this but I get the sense that there is much we Westerners can learn from understanding the history of Arab culture and Islamic traditions.

    I have studied the history of the Christian church from a historical and cultural perspective. Religious rituals and theology have distorted the original message during the past two thousand years. I strongly suspect that the same thing has happened with Islamic tradition and we are experiencing actions as interpreted by some Muslim sects that have interpreted Islamic traditions in very specific ways that may not necessarily be consistent with Muhummad’s visions.