To poster of mentioned press release: Pls. quote some relevant sentences to which your message on the board refers.
Generally: We have no time left about Turkey. This nation is strong and willing, whereas we (Germans) are no more. These are the aftermaths of the Second World War and the leftist derailments. Turkish youth in general lack the sense of cultural co-existance and pose a problem to infrastructure both in education as in communal integration. But the situation is mutually aspected: German youth - from well adapted to "anti-anti" - shall bear the brunt of the future. Their leftist upbringing shall be taught a lesson by the new citizens and their self-assurance. In other respects I have no doubts that Moslem Turkish people when dedicated to a subject and a life theme do just as well as we Christians do, here. They do agriculture well, they do medical care well, they learn more and more about animal wellfare and they allow western charity groups to work in Turkey together with interested Turks, they are apt people, on the whole. I have no doubt that we all will learn from one another, - as long as the Christian is willing to learn himself/herself and not stick to funny orthodoxy. Time from 1.200 before Christ (Sappho's era in Greece was about 600 B.C.) has almost tripled without anyone of us quite aware of the meaning of this time span: Our present time is so self-centred and petty-believing (German word: "kleingläubig"). The idea of Europe shall not be settled before the next two hundred years. The Jewish Calender counting in 720/800 years-steps (one third of the 2.400 years described by Jupiter/Saturn revolutions through the entire zodiac) has quite a different view of political events. Shall we Christians opt to lose by fearing the Moslem-Jewish participation in the run for Truth ? (*) Indeed, these are the decided ones. Point to the leftists, they have messed up a lot in politics. German children need a religious foundation just as any other culture gives to its children. This great lack is produced by leftist influence in politics. Let them pay the bill.
(*) Quotation from Roger Garaudy "Où allons-nous?" (pg.126) (Paris, 1990) : "Mais, comme le soulignait Ibn Khaldoun, une société n'est vaincue de l'extérieur que lorsqu'elle a perdu la foi intérieure qui la rendait invincible et rayonnante." ---
Hi Angela, glad to meet you here too! Relevant sentences of the Economist can not be quoted, because they don’t exist. The title is irrelevant, as P. Karras writes in his original message about Turkey and the Economist.
If Germany was damaged by the second world war and the leftist movement, why does the rest of Europe seem also weakened? Maybe there is a European problem, and not particularly German, as Nat Gerrs writes in Why Europe. In any case, time does not heal the wounds by itself, as we know, mere passing of time can also prove deadly, as it has happened in the past – it will prove deadly, when decisions are taken which are major and not irreversible, as Turkey’s entrance into Europe is.
So far as I know, no one says (at least not here at Elpenor) that the Turks can not learn anything and are not apt. Besides this, no one says that we should not have any relationship with them, even a close one. Think of it in another way and it will become obvious: do I need to make anyone a member of my family in order to learn from him? What is it, then, that distinguishes a member from a non-member of a family?
If we were a family, first of all we would know who is or can be a member, and who can’t. Therefore, the problem is that we are not a family ourselves. Not only Germany, but all Europe is damaged. The second world war just brought into the surface waves of nihilism inherent in most of the European nations – Italy, a catholic country and the root of catholicism, co operated with nazism, as you remember. Is this just a coincidence? Protestants see the Pope as the Antichrist – yet Protestants and Catholics co operated very well in the nazist movement, while other Protestants and other Catholics resisted, which means that Christianity as such is in the margin of these developments: it has become irrelevant. Thus we are in front of a European Union that needs to take crucial decisions about her future, without having the necessary strength to take them. This situation does not permit much hope. Maybe we live in the middle between one nihilist wave (that of the world wars) and one that comes, which can be a disintegration or a pure commercialization of Europe that will lead to something like the former soviet union’s factory-society, which also disintegrated, after it has tortured its people.
"Thus we are in front of a European Union that needs to take crucial decisions about her future, without having the necessary strength to take them".
I agree with your analysis. I think a major concern, which I have about the decisions the EU makes, regards the actual quality and relevancy of what "it believes" to be important decisions in the average European citizens life. The EU essentially suffers from a form of constricted tunnel vision, which it created, by and through its functioning as a purely administrative body that contains no center, in which Europeans could or can draw on to define their own distinctive "sense" of what it means to be a European, in body, mind and spirit. The resulting failure to achieve this goal or vision, appears to be the establishment an organisation that lacks any genuine value or consequential purpose, so its belief in itself and its values appears to become nothing more than a half hearted belief in its own, rather remote contracts, structures and procedures, which signify nothing about the spirit of Europe, which this type of administration cannot represent in any valuable sense (Does not all Administration lay outside the historical and the cultural).
If this is what the EU has become, well it's not surprising that many may feel the need to depart from an institution which increasingly lacks both the organic sense and, the intuitive understanding of those values which made Europe, an historically and culturally unique peninsula upon the map of the world. Under this mass inertia which has now become a totally mechanical procedure, such increasingly wasteful administrational fiefdoms, seem set to expand even more, until it no longer posses the strength nor energy to make any crucial decision, due to the impossible task of actually finding these values in the future, as they will of become buried by the implosion of a galaxy of dead forces, begotten by and, in the scared name of the administration & PR business which do seem to be becoming, the only real "business" of any concern in Brussels these days.
Here is a sentence from Nat Gerrs, whose text George refers to:
”when they are not able to unite even themselves!”
Great heavens, why this strive for “unification” ? Can’t we accept one another in Christian diversity, - which must be the main learning point for example in a region like Northern Irleand ? ”Unification” is a means to secure central control, and this aspect is the main bureaucratic power already ruling over European Parliament. The Brussels’ standardization is more destructive than inspirational. The goal looks more like a copy of “Washington”, -- and if times are bad, a counterforce to “Washington”, inducing the next possible war. I prefer a secular Turkey with Moslems as to their liking to a religiously inspired “Washington” with every-day Christians forced to abandon school prayer.
I agree with you, unification is not a good by itself, it can prove a nightmare. But the sentence from Nat’s article is so isolated, that it can cause a misunderstanding. In its context says that the Churches can not complain and give advices for the European Union when themselves are divided! That means: beyond the goodness or badness of any union, to talk about a union and be reliable, you must speak first with your example.
I agree with what you say about Washington and how it can’t be in any way an example to Europe. But, if in a school class there are 2 or 3 parts of children who belong to different religions, school prayer is not possible; unless the Ministry of Education in an Orwellian manner constructs a prayer to some Anonymous SuperGod – which seems impossible even for the USA to do, and, in any case, would be a parody of all religions. This is an example of what happens when a political union is not also a union of faith. Although the Washington example proves you wrong, your initial suggestion is not wrong, in my opinion. But you speak as a German, which means that your experience of Christianity is (at least in its roots) the experience of papacy.
The Pope as an Emperor of all Christianity was the dream of papacy, the dream that caused first the division of the (catholic) west with the (orthodox) east, and then the further dividion of the west into catholic and protestant churches, and then the division of the protestant churches to a thousand denominations. What you fear, the central control, is not something you should fear: it tried to happen, we see where it ended, and it can’t happen again, because neither the Orthodox nor the various Protestant Churches will ever submit to such a madness of the Pope.
However, Christian diversity as any diversity, has limits, beyond which a union does not exist. An obvious limit is for all of us to believe in the Holy Trinity and that Christ is something more than an enlightened man. A diversity that forbids me to partake to the Holy Communion together with you, is not an acceptable diversity: there must be some problem here. Any diversity is acceptable, as long as in reality there is only One Church of Christ, which happens in Orthodoxy. There are about twenty self-regulated Orthodox Churches, and yet they are only One Church.
My point is that to have limits to a diversity is not wrong by itself: the crucial question is who decides the limits? If the Pope (or any Pope) decides, then we have central control and the rest. If we decide in common, all of us in equal terms, then we have people discussing in freedom. In this respect a union of the Churches would be possible and, I believe, good for all, provided we don’t see faith in the terms of an ideology and will to power.