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STRONG…or Not

I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a rabbit but you don’t need to sit in a litterbox everyday to know that something is wrong with our country when bigots can serve openly in political office but our kids can’t openly be taught science and history without exaggerated myth impinging upon their curriculum. As President I’ll end the blasphemous war to distort religion and I’ll fight fear-based attacks by “religious” fanatics against the religious diversity and freedom of thought guaranteed by our Constitution. FREEDOM of religion and, in fact, just plain freedom, made America strong. It can make her strong again. I’m a rabbit and I approved this message.

And Another Thing…

Faith isn’t like “Twilight.” It isn’t Team Jesus vs. Team Muhammud vs. Team It’s None of Your Business. Faith isn’t about being seen sitting in church and it isn’t about slapping a fish on the back of your car. The back of your car is where you should be slapping truly excellent bumper stickers like these from Bunny Whipped but I digress.

faith |fāθ| noun

1 complete trust or confidence in someone or something

2 strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

• a system of religious belief

• a strongly held belief or theory

Faith is…well…FAITH. It’s the faith to believe there is room for other beliefs, that a God big enough to create what YOU already think he created is big enough to have created much, much more – like the laws of nature, science and other ways of thinking and believing. Faith is the security to know that God is big and that is alright. Faith is even the security to believe that if the person next to you doesn’t believe in God she is either right or wrong but it does not have any bearing what-so-ever on your faith.

Faith is also the ability to understand that faith is not diminished, or under siege, or in any way weakened by the beliefs of others. This is why the founding fathers of the United States made, as a cornerstone of our nation, freedom of religion. Yes, Christianity was the faith of some of the founders but they very purposefully left Christianity out of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Both they and the Supreme Court have been pretty specific on this point so I won’t be droll. Had the founders specified Christianity as the state religion than we would be in the very same boat as Saudi Arabia or, frankly, any communist country. Specifying what religion people will or will not worship is the exact opposite of the intentons of ALL of our founding fathers. It is one of the very few things they all agreed upon. What they gave us was FREEDOM of religion and if you can’t understand why it’s the “freedom” part and not the “religion” part of that which sets this nation apart, than I have this lovely hutch for you right out back.

Another thing about faith is that faith is often, very often, confused with force. Instead of feeling secure enough in their faith to practice it in their hearts and homes, some people, using  _____________ as their excuse, (and here you can fill in the blank with the name of almost any major religion) believe that forcing others to openly bow, with their hands over their hearts and “under God,” to the professed religion of the majority makes faith stronger. NEWS FLASH:  God doesn’t need your vote. God is God (or not – for all you atheist bunnies out there) no matter what and forcing others to bow and recite words they do not believe or backing children of different faiths into a corner so that they feel less-than for not agreeing with the dominant religion, evidences not faith in God but the exact opposite. If you think you need to force someone, anyone, then you are testifying that your beliefs are not strong enough without that other person and that your God needs both you and them in order to be God. You need to know that the Great Bunny is there no matter what any of the rest of you believe. I am at peace with that. I have faith.

And One Last Thing…

On this, the eve of Christmas Eve, I’ve been thinking about innkeepers. As the story goes, Mary and Joseph returned to Bethlehem, for the census of Joseph’s family, having, foolishly, not made prior reservations. Since the rest of the line of David was there as well, there was, as they say, “no room at the inn.” Increasingly worried about the impending birth, Joseph and Mary went from inn to inn and every single time they were turned away. Even two thousand years later we think about those innkeepers and we shake our heads but here is what we forget. One man, and I guarantee you it was a man given the place of women at that time in history, said “yes.” He wasn’t an innkeeper and all he had available was a stable, but one man said, “yes.”

Who was that guy? History has denied him his rightful place but one has to wonder, given the general population of Bethlehem at the time, was he a Palestinian? He wasn’t a Muslim, because Islam was still hundreds of years into the future, and he could have been a Jew, but Bethlehem was a diverse place and he easily could have been any of several other faiths which were popular at the time. Was the man who put a roof over the Lord of all Christians on the night of the birth of our faith, was he a Palestinian? We don’t know. No one does. Still, he was a man of goodness, a man of kindness, a man who did all he could at a time when no one else stepped up. So, does it matter? Does who or what he worshipped matter? This was a man who changed history with his heart and, no matter his faith, he deserves the thanks of all Christians. He even deserves the thanks of doves and sheep and fatted calves and, this is just conjecture, but quite possibly more than a few rabbits, because Christianity put an end to so much of that sacrificing of members of the animal kingdom on alters (see “Leviticus” for more detail on this). Christianity changed a lot of things – including adherence to the many laws and rituals imposed in “Leviticus”. (Make a note, Rick Perry.)

It is my hope on this eve of the Eve that Christians find a way for faith to open their hearts in the same way that man, of unknown faith, opened his stable. It is my hope that on the Holy Night and on every night we are each secure in the faith that we are each secure in the hands of God and that no human force, or law, or religion can change that.

Merry Christmas.

Yours in the Great Bunny – Arliss

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[With Helpful Illustrations]

I’m telling you now, I don’t get this whole mosque thing. Oh, I listen to MSNBC and CNN AND Fox. I have all the information. I still don’t get it.

1. First we have New York City, a place which celebrates itself as the center of the diplomatic United Nationsand financial world.  Wall StreetPersonally, I’m a big fan of the park. I’ve seen pictures. Central Park

2. Next we have lunatic humans plowing planes into buildings, the WTC and the Pentagon, and killings thousands. Bunny lives were lost too but you didn’t notice. You were all in shock and too sad to pay any attention. We forgive you. It was an awful time for everyone.

3. Now, we have Sufi Muslims trying to go through the proper channels to get the approval to build a community center and small mosque two blocks away from the original site of the WTC. In response all manner of talking-head-hell has broken loose. "You're wrong!" "No, you're wrong!"

I should clarify here, for those who missed it behind all the hot air being expended, that Sufism is a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT branch of Islam than that of the terrorists. The terrorists were Sunni. The Sufi and the Sunni aren’t “kind of the same thing” or “hard to tell apart,” they are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. As in, it’s one thing to blame the Jehovah’s Witness’ for Michael Jackson. It’s another thing entirely to blame the Mormons. [To further clarify, there are also the Shi’a, as in the nutjobs that run Iran, but don’t get me started on that.]

Now, let’s say for the sake of argument, that it is acceptable to blame an entire group of people or faith for the actions of selected individuals. Let’s just imagine that I am good with that. Adolph Hitler Adolph Hitlerwas, for instance, a Catholic. So let’s ban all Catholic churches in Germany and Israel…and any around the WTC, just to be safe. Also, Timothy McVeigh Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was a Catholic too so, clearly, that’s it for the Catholic church anywhere near the site of the Oklahoma City bombing. WOW! When you think about it, the Catholics have really been trouble from the beginning, trying to convert everyone all over the world to their religion with their Crusade, their Inquisition, Inquisition torture Friday the Thirteenth and their seditious missionaries. Obviously, they want everyone to be under the rule of Rome and they aren’t shy about butchering those who disagree.

And then there are the Mormons. They have a CLEARLY stated plan for world domination and the missionaries, money and growth in numbers to back it up. They are even bent on getting Mormons elected to the highest offices in this land. Mitt Romney Also, have you seen their temples fortresses? No windows down low, huge high walls set on strategically defensible land. Tell me those aren’t people with an organized plan.

Okay, so far we have eliminated Catholic churches in several locations and two countries and we are keeping an eye on those Mormons. Who’s next? I’m currently checking into the United Church of Christ. You really have to watch them because they support tolerance…just like the Sufi Muslims. That’s right, tolerance.

tolerance |ˈtäl(ə)rəns|
noun
1 the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with

Need I say more?!?! Both the UCC and Sufis believe that it is okay if you believe something different than they do! These silly people actually think that faith is something internal, that you practice for yourself – not something you shove down the throats of others AND they think that the best way to spread their message is to have places around the world so that other people can come inside, of their own free will, and learn something. *shock* *gasp*

Now I have a LOT to say about Sunni and Shi’a Islam – what’s right with it, what’s wrong with it but I won’t bore you with that because here’s one thing I know for sure, NEITHER ONE OF THEM IS SUFI ISLAM. THUMP!!!

And even if this community center was being built by Sunni Muslims, is the founding principle of religious freedom so thin and fragile in this country that you are willing to sacrifice it on any alter (fear, bigotry, grief, political gain, 15 minutes of fame?) Freedom of religion is one of the backbones of the country and has extended a grace to this nation found in precious few places in the world. So, you have to ask yourself, do you want to be more like Saudi Arabia or more like Canada because this, people is one of those tipping point moments. Al-Qaeda and the Taliban are already using your hate and bigotry about this mosque as a recruitment tool. Do you really want to be a part of making their lives any easier? If so, what does that make you?

Today, I overheard a talking head saying something like:

Head: …well, if we could just be guaranteed that the form of Islam taught in mosques in this country was peaceful and not anti-government then…

This statement made me perk up my ears, which is going some because…you know, lop ears – harder to perk,

Seriously, perking ears is a challenge for lops.

and I got to thinking…what if we threw out part of that pesky “freedom of speech” thingie and did monitor what was taught in mosques. That might be good. Then I thought, oooooh, we should throw in the Christian churches too because there are many more Christian pastors preaching against the government right now than there are Muslim ones. PreacherThat would solve everything, right?

To summarize, we have eliminated Catholic churches in several locations and two countries. we are keeping an eye on those Mormons, we are viewing anyone tolerant with suspicion and we have spies in all the churches, mosques and temples. Whew! Good work guys! I think you are making real progress…backwards.

May the Great Pumpkin bestow his blessings upon you all. Great Pumpkin God [Note:  my God tastes better than your God – especially in pie.]

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