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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %GOOD CONTENTIOUS CONFLICT AGAINST IMPERFECT DEVIL+020829 %CONFRONT IDENTIFY RESPOND MISLEADING QUESTION WAY+020829 %BATTLE PARADIGM CORRECTIVE ACTIONS FIX LOCALIZE+020829 %CONFRONT WINDMILLS CONTROL SELF OTHERS BELIEFS+020829 %SINNERS HELL HEAVEN SALVATION RIGHTEOUSNESS PURE+020829 %PURIFICATION RECONCILIATION HEALING RESOLUTION GOD 020829 When we are confronted with imperfections and/or evil in life --- the challenge is to identify ways of responding which DO NOT INCREASE the imperfections and/or evil present in our lives and relationships. We fail in our efforts to meet the challenge if we frame and ask our questions about the challenge in only the following misleading ways: 1. Who (other than us) is at fault, blameworthy, guilty, a suitable sacrificial lamb? 2. In which people, things and/or places --- is the evil concentrated and/or into which sacrificial people, things, and/or places can evil be banished? 3. What are the sure and certain signs of the presence of evil in people, things and/or places --- so we may unilaterally identify and fix or destroy them? 4. How can we unilaterally fix imperfect and/or evil people, things and/or places? 5. What are the best manipulative tools to use in: localizing, confronting, contending with and combating evil imperfections OUTSIDE OF US. 6. How can we best avoid being tainted with evil? The above questions are misleading because they are founded upon mixtures of attitudes and assumptions such as the following ones. 1. We are not ourselves: at fault, blameworthy, guilty or appropriate sacrificial lambs. 2. Evil and/or imperfections are "bad stuff" which can be localized in people, things, and/or places; and through the use of redemptive coercion/violence such "bad stuff" can be "cast out", "removed", "eliminated" and/or "destroyed". 3. Our challenge is to identify the proper tools, technologies, and/or corrective procedures which can be used by good people like us to --- unilaterally fix/correct the problems which "imperfections" and/or "evil" pose to us. 4. If we are not engaged in contention/conflict against "imperfections" and "evil" --- we are being negligent and contributing the the persistence of "imperfections" and "evil" in the world. It is our duty to be engaged in the holy battle against "evil". 5. Attempts to transcend "imperfections" and "evil" without the use of coercion and/or violence are the work of "the Devil" who is in conflict with God --- who is Good and Perfect and so is unchanging like we should be. It is essential that we be preparing for and/or engaged in good contentious conflict. We are "good" when we are engaged in good contentious conflict. We are "evil" when we fail to be engaged in good contentious conflict. 6. An effective way to deal with evil is to distance ourselves from the presence of evil; i.e., purify ourselves by pushing that which is evil away from ourselves, or ourselves move out from among those people and places wherein evil resides. We can become evil by merely being associated with evil people, places and things. =============================================== Our efforts to deal with evil are dysfunctional when they are strongly motivated and guided by: 1. Greed, selfishness, arrogance and self-righteous attitudes and patterns of thought. 2. Failures to acknowledge that evil is in large part an aspect of our RELATIONSHIPS; not an aspect of people, things and/or places apart from our RELATIONSHIPS with such people, things and/or places. 3. Fear, anxiety, ignorance, bias and prejudice. 4. Attempts to achieve security for ourselves through invulnerability --- at the expense of others who are more vulnerable than we are --- or than we are willing to be. 5. Preoccupations with appearances and manipulative techniques --- through which we try to appear acceptable, right, righteous, pure and free from evil. 6. A deep fear of rejection and alienation --- a fear which is rooted in our unsatisfactory relationships with others. (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================