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7th Rangers: The Muslim’s Inner Struggles by Anjuli Pandavar


 
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No Atheists
In A Foxhole
“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God


Which must always come to pass

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He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?


Have you always turned the other cheek?


To My Church have you been true?"


"No, Lord, I guess I ain't


Because those of us who carry guns


Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around


Except to calm their fears.


If you've a place for me here,


Lord, It needn't be so grand,


I never expected or had too much,


But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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The Muslim’s Inner Struggles by Anjuli Pandavar
Tuesday, August 27, 2019
Inner Struggle?
Jihad Watch : Never before in the history of Islam has it faced a danger such as this. For the first time, Muslims en masse are reclaiming their place in humanity and rejoining history. Islam has always relied on Muslims being unequivocally Muslim in clear contradistinction to the kafir, the unbeliever, treating the values and mores of the infidel with utter disgust and contempt. But history has played a trick on Islam and increasing numbers of Muslims find the values and mores of the infidels growing within their own hearts, gradually forcing out the Qur’an so firmly lodged there during their early childhood. This drama plays out as Islam struggling against Muslims and Muslims struggling against themselves. This short series explores aspects of that complex struggle. Read all of  Part 1 here.................
In the blistering summer of 2016, I was doing research into Shinto, for which I interviewed the representative of the High Priest of Daiganji Temple, on an island off Hiroshima. I learnt a great deal about the fluid syncretism across animism, Shinto and Buddhism, and how social hierarchy and state power plugged into these at different points in Japanese history and social evolution, my particular interest being in the transition from Heian to Kamakura. Right at the end of the interview she summed up everything in one simple observation: Shinto is about fear; it’s all about fear.
I’ve since thought a lot about that observation and about what drives or drove animist and pagan religions. From time to time, I am reminded of the fear that drove us in our infancy to attempt to placate the terrifying and unfathomable forces of nature that could so easily, for reasons known only to those forces themselves, destroy us, and how, right from when we first conceived of gods, we created them in our image. How could we do otherwise; it was the only image we had. Read all of Part 2 here....................
Cast your mind back to your wistful backpacking days of travel guides and folded maps and bewildering coins and phrase books. Days of visa applications and weird vaccinations, of Kodak and Fuji and sleeping bags and hiking boots, of beers and guitars on roof terraces and condoms (because you never know), of hoping you can still find something to eat after having arrived late at night and of dying for a shower and........
Perhaps in your day, backpacking included time out to write postcards to friends and family, finding a post office and briefly noticing the picture on the stamp; or maybe you’ve only ever known emails and selfies and Facebook, er, “friends”? Either way, you will have noticed the large, colourful wall maps in the youth hostel receptions. The ones bristling with pinheads and bordered with little flags of the many countries from which guests have hailed.
If you looked carefully, and had a modicum of geography to your credit, you will have picked out your own homeland, naturally, then gone to the other familiar ones such as the USA, Germany, the UK, Italy, Brazil, Canada, Australia (or is that New Zealand? — whatever), Israel, Japan, South Korea, and on to unfamiliar ones, such as Jamaica, the Philippines, Russia, South Africa, Uruguay.
And perhaps you noticed, but did not wonder about, why there seemed to be no flags of Muslim countries anywhere around that map.
Read all of Part 3 here........................
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 11:54 PM  
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