Racism: A Legacy of Monotheism?

Nestor Ravilas

Racism is evil, and to root its origin to monotheism is quite distressing!

Monotheistic Christianity, along with other monotheistic religions, has been blamed for racism together with other forms of discriminations this world can name. The practice of classifying people on different categories might have been with us even before monotheism was introduced in Israel, or say, in Egypt by Akhenaten in 1400 BCE, few years ahead of Sinai story. Accusation has been lodged, however, that the dawn of belief in “one and only god” inadvertently intensifies not only racism but all forms of discrimination. Regina Schwartz herself on her book, The Curse of Cain: The Violent Legacy of Monotheism, stresses this point which seemingly validates monotheism as the root of evil that has disintegrated us into warring factions.

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Collapse of Philippine Democracy Part 2: Docile Subjects

Nestor Ravilas

Ruby Paredes on her book “Colonial Democracy” says that the problem with our democracy is that our democratic institutions were established under colonial power. She is saying, in effect, the problem is either what was bequeathed to us by our American overlord is a distorted form of democracy, or we have not fully understood something that was actually imposed to us. Or both defects might have been embedded within Philippine democracy without us recognizing it. In that case, what we have learned and has immensely left an impact to our culture and psyche is the docility and subservience to colonial master than the emancipating “people is the sovereign” principle of democracy.

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Differing Opinions: Reflection on John 10:1-10

Nestor Ravilas

On this side we have Jesus, the Good Shepherd, whose distinctive voice consoles and entices us, who leads us where flourishing of life is possible, and protect us from threats against our well-being. That is our Jesus, our refuge.

On the other side are the scoundrels: strangers, thieves and bandits, whose business in life is to thwart the good intention of the good shepherd. These are the enemies which we have to push and keep outside.

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The Riddle of Romans 13

Nestor Ravilas

Romans 13 again comes to the fore as the national government is miserably fumbling and mishandling the management of the current pandemic. When democratic principles granted us the rights for free speech demonstrable in expressing our opinion publicly, Evangelical Christians immediately seize the public space to shelter and protect the government with the usual and irritating “be-subject-to-authorities” discourse of Romans 13. Proudly, they brandished that the Bible is higher than the Constitution. But, do they really know their Bible?

Did the Bible really say that the emperor, or the government for that matter, is beyond reproach? That we should refrain from criticizing the government, which amounts to challenging the authority of God in the same way?

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