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November 20, 2005

Comments

Tom the Redhunter

Indeed I am glad to see the president take up the cause of religious liberty too.

Strange about China, it has a communist country that has abandoned communist theory in everything but the desire to hold absolute power. As such they have nothing left but old-fashioned nationalism, and that of the worst sort (the recent anti-Japanese fervor,for example).

Perhaps this is why they're so afraid of Christians and Falun Gong? Because the government really has nothing to offer the people in the way of something to believe in. And people the world over will sooner or later search for something "higher". Sadly, some find it in totalitarian ideologies or some other radicalism. But perhaps the rise of Falun Gong and Christianity in China is due top the vacuum that was left when the Communist party there abandoned communism.

Agreed or no?

Bill Rice

Tom,

Faith in Communist Poland seemed to play a powerful role in the Solidarity movement.

Religious freedom goes hand and hand in free speech. You cannot have one without the other.

As Chinese increase their economic wealth and living condition and find that it doesn't produce a lasting satisfaction of the soul, I imagine religion will be of interest to the people.

This seems true in South Korea. My grandmother was a missionary in China prior to the Second World War. There is a large and growing underground church movement in China that I have posted on prior.

I hope that the Chinese receive more freedom in worship.

Kind regards,

Bill Rice
Dawn's Early Light

Michael Turton

Perhaps this is why they're so afraid of Christians and Falun Gong? Because the government really has nothing to offer the people in the way of something to believe in.

Incorrect, as it is serving up a potent brew of nationalism and economic growth. Besides, whatever makes you think the Chinese need something to "believe in?" What if that is just your western ethnocentricism speaking?

And people the world over will sooner or later search for something "higher". Sadly, some find it in totalitarian ideologies or some other radicalism. But perhaps the rise of Falun Gong and Christianity in China is due top the vacuum that was left when the Communist party there abandoned communism.

Christianity and Communism represent a clash of competing authoritarianisms, two groups of believers in centralized authority-worship, values rooted in trascendent absolutes, with Leninist political structures and tight control of all the major aspects of human life. It is not a coincidence that Christianity and Communism hate each other -- they are two versions of the same system. This competition, however, is sometimes useful for both, which is one reason why the Catholic Church is shifting to China now that Taiwan is a democracy.

Given that religious repression in China has produced rapid rises in all forms of religious expression, including Christianity, as well as increased interest in missionary work, higher levels of financing from abroad, greater doctrinal and organizational unity, the cachet of being anti-government, and numerous other benefits, perhaps evangelical support for religious freedom in China is the wrong strategy for growth. After all, there are proportionally fewer Christians in the free states around China -- Macao, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong -- and in none is Christianity growing like it is in China. Poland was mentioned above -- the Church was important when there was authoritarianism, but now that there is freedom, people promptly fell away from it.


Michael

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Markclcan

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