Sunday, March 15, 2015

The problem with Orthodox Christianity

Because of the fast and often violent onslaught of Islam, I am understandably preoccupied with criticizing this religion. At the same time, however, I do not forget that the religion of my ancestors, Orthodox Christianity, is also defective. As I recently said to a friend, there is not one decent country dominated by Orthodox Christianity (Greece is the best, but still not good enough) and this cannot be a coincidence. So I knew there was something wrong with this faith, but because it is the traditional religion of my country, I was too much inside it to spot the problem.

Maybe the clue is in the following text, which I found while searching information on Putin's whereabouts:

"This is why it’s impossible for the Kremlin to lie about Putin’s weird disappearance

March 14, Washington Post 

It’s been more than a week now since anybody’s seen Russian President Vladimir Putin. He had a mundane meeting with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi on March 5, and then … nothing. Since then, Putin hasn’t been seen in public, and the Russian blogosphere can talk about nothing else...  #PutinIsDead began trending on Russian Twitter, and the Russian blogosphere began to churn out theories of what happened to Dear Shirtless Leader, each version more ludicrous than the next...

You can see why some in Russia are panicking right now—or veiling their discomfort in humor. It certainly doesn’t help that Putin’s disappearance comes at a particularly nervous time for the country. It is at war in Ukraine, its economy is shuddering under sanctions and historically low oil prices, and the opposition leader, Boris Nemtsov, was recently gunned down steps from the Kremlin. There is a sense in Moscow that the wheels are coming off. To Moscow’s chattering class, Putin’s disappearance confirms that impression.

As for the rest of Russia, if the buzz about Putin’s mysterious absence doesn’t make it on the television screen, it didn’t happen: for 90 percent of the Russian population, TV is the main source of news. And, even if they knew, for a majority of Russians this event would be like most other political events—that is, above their pay grade. When it comes to the intricacies politics, the prevailing attitude outside Moscow’s liberal circles is a semi-religious one, and it comes from Byzantine culture. Just as the Eucharist is prepared behind the wall of icons that separates the altar from the eyes of the laity, so it is with political maneuvers: We are but mere mortals, unable to understand such mysteries. Let the professionals handle it.

The problem is that the professionals aren’t handling it too well anymore..."

(Emphasis mine - M.M.)

Update: Damn it! Putin reappeared today, in apparently good condition!

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