Terrorists Evade Self-Awareness
Terrorism has no religion
The influential poet and critic, T. S. Eliot, is noted for having quipped, ". . . for our lives are mostly a constant evasion of ourselves."
Philosophers, critics of humanity, and self-help instructors often point out the damage done the human heart, mind, and soul by that very evasion.
"Holy War" is an Oxymoron
Today there is widespread focus on the religion of Islam. There is a concept in Islam called jihad, which is translated into English as struggle, but often misinterpreted as the oxymoron "holy war."
That struggle refers to the spiritual striving to overcome "the lower self in order to reach a state of higher God-consciousness that leads to the pure soul."
The terrorists led by the late Usama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri have perverted the original Islamic concepts to fit their own ego-driven desire to conquer and control the world. That madness is not new; charismatic madmen have often used religion to run rough-shod over others.
True Teachings Emphasize the Individual, not Groups
Spiritual striving leads to individual awareness, not power over others. Spiritual power cannot be used to change others without their consent.
In his letter to America, Usama bin Laden tells Americans—and by Americans he really means Western culture—what he wants from them that will make him stop using terror against the West.
Bin Laden's first request is, "The first thing that we are calling you to is Islam." But one cannot be called to a spiritual way of life in order to stop the religionists doing the calling from killing one.
Bin Laden's remark is an ignorant thing to say, and the rest of the letter is also a vast display of ignorance not only of human psychology but also of history.
Bin Laden accuses America, saying: "It is saddening to tell you that you are the worst civilization witnessed by the history of mankind." Is the United States really a worse civilization than the worst elements of the Roman Empire, the Ottoman Empire, Hitler's Third Reich, or Japan before World War II?
Even if the United States were the worst civilization ever in history, the spiritual path taken by each individual American is totally irrelevant to that supposed fact.
Becoming soul-realized is not the purview of one religionist controlling the religion of an entire country or culture.
A Constant Evasion of the Self
Bin Laden and his ilk are supreme examples of those who are in "constant evasion of" their "selves" or souls. They are so busy thinking up ways and procuring the means to kill non-Islamic, and even Islamic people who do not agree with them, that they have no time for true religion that offers the methods for genuine spiritual striving to know the self.
The terrorists, their leaders, and their sycophants have excised passages from scripture and recontextualized them, thus creating an excuse, not a reason, for their murderous activities.
Approaching the Great Divinity requires a calm heart and a steady eye. Scurrying from cave to cave to avoid being captured and brought to justice leaves little time for effective study and true meditation on the Divine.
© 2017 Linda Sue Grimes