You know he got the cure
You know he went astray
He used to stay awake
To drive the dreams he had away
He wanted to believe
In the hands of love
His head it felt heavy
As he cut across the land
A dog started crying
Like a broken hearted man
At the howling wind
At the howling wind
He went deeper into black
Deeper into white
Could see the stars shining
Like nails in the night
He felt the healing
Healing hands of love
Like the stars shiny shiny
Hand in the pocket
Finger on the steel
The pistol weighed heavy
His heart he could feel
Was beating, beating
Beating, beating oh my love
Oh my love, oh my love
Oh my love
Saw the hands that build
Can also pull down
The hands of love
-- U2, "Exit"
So I asked someone on the Pagan Student Alliance mailing list to refrain from off-topic posting. Last year she'd prompted a flame war and subsequent temporary moderated-list status after posting about an Iraq war and being incredulous that any Pagan would be pro-war. A few responses later, here's an example of her argumentative techniques:
You strike me as an incredibly insecure and misinformed man. The goddess tells me that You have found that modern society has rejected you because you do not fit their looksist paradigm so you have found a place where you can wield some power... typical... the oppressed becoming the oppressor.... She tells me you are a racist and misogynist, no matter what guise you attempt to wear.....
I have two powers not accorded to all members of the student group. I run the YahooGroup (because I'm a computer nerd, and know how it works) and I can sign for our SOFO account (because I took the initiative to set it up so we could send out a Buff Bulletin). The group itself is interesting in that it lacks any sort of power structure whatsoever. Meetings are run by whoever volunteers leadership. Most of the original group members aren't active anymore. The woman who started the group has been the antithesis of a High Priestess on a Power Trip. So my interlocutor's claim of my power wielding must be based on... my power to ask people to remain on topic. She had to ask to be removed from the list. (And anyone who's seen me will probably conclude that I either could care less about the "looksist paradigm" or I'm a complete hat-wearing attention whore.)
So anyway, I just made a long point-by-point civil response. The reason I'm posting this is to share my concluding remark, which I think is rather poetic.
Christian evangelists win few converts by yelling at people for their sins.
Their converts come when the messenger shares the love of Christ.
Even the people I dislike most are children of the God and Goddess and
I make every effort I can to treat them as brothers and sisters in the
House of my Mother and Father. May you experience joy, overcome your
challenges, and always blessed be.
I am reminded a bit about Dostoyevsky's "The Grand Inquisitor" (from The Brothers Karmazov). The Grand Inquisitor in Spain meets Christ and explains all the terrible things he does and suggests that God ought to Smite him (though not with quite that language). Throughout the meeting, Christ is silent. At the end, He rises; kisses the Inquisitor; and departs. In my Existentialism, I had the following to say about this story:
Why is Jesus silent in The Grand Inquisitor?
One of The Grand Inquisitor's main claims is that God gave humans freedom, but they don't want it because they can't handle it. The Grand Inquisitor thus takes the position that the faithful, the Grand Inquisitor and his cohorts, as the strong and elect who can handle the burden of freedom ought to remove the freedom of the masses. They will suffer the knowledge of good and evil so that the masses may be in peaceful bliss.
If Jesus (God) were to speak in response to the Grand Inquisitor, he would be delivering the Word of God. This could be a command or guidance, which would lift the burden of freedom from the Grand Inquisitor. To insert an opinion would be to become like the Grand Inquisitor -- keeping the true knowledge of Good and Evil among a select group and releasing the Grand Inquisitor from freedom.