I think it is getting harder to shake the cobwebs with each round of this crap but that ain’t your problem.
What I have had on the burner is a reply to a very good comment by Don on the last Culture post.
As with many things in life there are large parts I agree with and some I don’t. Some of the potential disagreement comes from me using words loosely in the hopes of keeping things short and sweet. When you do this it is very easy to conflate two seemingly very close ides which at their roots are quite dissimilar. Thus I am going to reply almost paragraph by paragraph, not to argue with Don primarily but to get this stream on the proper footing before I proceed with the next installment. Quotes and discussion will intersperse.
A couple comments; I don’t think anyone in Japan has taken Shinto serious for a thousand years or so. I liken it to what we’ve done with Easter and Christmas a lot of fun and games but not much action. In the United States you probably can’t find 10 Zoroastrainists but 40 million people check their horoscopes every day.
Now the “way of the warrior” is derived from Zen Buddhism and lots of good folk in Okinawa or Korea or Formosa would have a pretty dim view of that…but that doesn’t mean that the acts of the Japanese imperialists were the result of such a belief system, which brings me to my second point; historically a lot of things done in the name of religion would have been done anyway.
This is where I must plead Mea Culpa! In an effort to make things flow quickly I conflated the Buddhist “Way of the Warrior” with the Shinto / Zen Buddhism “Samurai Way” more commonly known in the West as Bushido! In most minds these are similar but reality is as you noted much different.
Now as to the historical irrelevancy of Shinto, it was the State Religion of the Empire of Japan until it was officially severed from the Government by the Army of Occupation under Douglas (Ego Freak) MacArthur. It’s High Temple the Yasukuni Shrine is maintained until this day as a memorial for the war dead including convicted and executed War Criminals from WWII.
The Kamikaze pilots as late as the Okinawa Campaign would toast each other with “We Meet Again at Yasukuni” as their last affirmation of Bushido and Shinto! I have personally stood in Yasukuni and read the inscriptions of how the US “Forced” the Empire into the war!
Thus I have to disagree with you here as your suppositions do not square with facts. Even there you did get some undertones correct! The backstabbing tactics used by the Military Leadership of the Empire did in fact upon careful examination violate several of the tenets of Bushido! More on this later!
The Spanish inquisition is a good example, the Spanish crown went far beyond what the church intended. Ferdinand and Isabella had work to do and if that meant calling some enemies heretic so be it. Who really believes that Cortez and Pissarro were only in it for the glory of god?
Spot fucking on! I will have to say that my attempt at sarcasm about the Inquisition did not read as well as it sounded when I read it to the Blond Lady! The Inquisition was used as an excuse to do what they wanted to do anyway. Hang around for the end of this ride as you will see an exposition on just this shit!
The same is true when I hear the claim that 100 million people were murdered this last century in the name of Godless Atheism, nope, Socialism killed those millions because that’s what Socialist’s do. When people argue over just how religious Hitler or Stalin really were it is only to distract from the Socialism.
It is amazing how much we do agree on! My side note is that the Socialists have elevated their damn Governmental Model to almost Religious status.
After the Battle of Manzikert there were undoubtedly many strategic thinkers (including the Pope) who thought it was now or never time and favored a war against Islam regardless of religious dictates (this is exactly our situation today) The crusades needed to be done with or without the blessing of the church, but without, they would have been a bigger failure than they were.
So back to the present it could be that what we really need is a religious war, and with the state of Christianity we’re not likely to get it.
You have no idea how close you are to my thinking!
Continuing New Stuff:
Obviously many people will see the titles of this series and think I am getting ready to knock Islam only. OK primarily Yes but, you must remember that I did open this by describing myself as a “Born Again Agnostic”! I did give a hint of where I am going in our novel “Never So Few” when I had a main character describe wars as being fought between cultures! The Churches need not necessarily be involved.
I wish I could get more commentary along these lines instead of the hate shit that is getting spam trapped.
But on a humorous note! Don do you realize how damaging this exchange is going to be to our carefully crafted veneer of illiterate and uneducated Redneck Pounder and Throwback Jarhead???