Is Politics Christian?

Manila Bulletin, April 16, 2006 | Go to article overview

Is Politics Christian?


Byline: Breakfast Table: Adrian Cristobal

REFLECT on this (this Easter): 9/11 and Abu Ghraib shock Christians and Muslims alike. Include deists, agnostics, and even atheists who spouse humanism and the values of civilization. As these events are political, they can be neither Christian nor Islamic, except for fundamentalists who are anathema to both worships.

Aristotle, whose politics ("the highest good") was adapted by Christian theologians, was no Christian (Dante assigned him to heaven, nevertheless), but his precepts (apart from slavery) remain one of the "foundations" of political thought.

But politics beneath the principle of civilized community is also the pursuit and uses of power, which regularly presents spectacles of betrayal, inconstancy, dissimulation, and destruction of lives and property. One can go around these with such sayings that in order to do good, one must sometimes consent to evil, but for all that, it would be challenging for anyone to say that politics is Christian or Islamic or Buddhist.

Thatas why historian Gary Willis can write that thereas no such thing as "Christian politics," as American Republicans and our own evangelists say. …

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