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Add to Technorati Favorites A Time, Times, and a Half a Time: October 2007

October 29, 2007

Formation of an Alliance Youth

I must admit that I enjoy interacting with our youth. In the university system, I am known as a non-traditional student. In case you’re wondering, at age 40 I decided to return to college as a part time student. I have found the experience of being amongst young people very pleasant and enjoyable. The campus has a bulletin board where students post news items they find of interest. I read this board often as I like to know of their concerns. I’ve noticed two issues stand out most: 1) world peace; and 2) freedom. Frequently posts are related to RFID technology and the implantation of both animals and humans. They clearly do not like it.

Nearly every Alliance of Civilizations’ report has stated that its primary target audience is our youth. I refer to it as the recruitment of an
Alliance Youth. It appears that young people are being indoctrinated as they participate in problem solving exercises (through conferences, seminars, etc.) and guided to arrive at predetermined outcomes—outcomes consistent with the “global conscience” of the United Nations.

One example can be found in
Model United Nations (MUN). MUN Headquarters reports that more than 200,000 high school and college students participate in UN simulation conferences each year. In a 2003 interview with SHARE International, former UN Assistant Secretary-General Robert Mueller said that the United Nations was finally being taught globally through the Model United Nations program. Mueller, who shares SHARE International’s vision of world governance by “Maitreya the Christ”, has done his part to introduce youth into this occult-based system by forming the Global Elementary Model United Nations (GEMUN) program which is offered through the Robert Mueller Schools. The Robert Mueller Schools associate themselves with the School of Ageless Wisdom which has as a basis of study the writings of Alice Bailey and Helena Blavatskky.

Mueller has connected with other Maitreya proponents and has incorporated into GEMUN's theme the Earth Charter which represents itself as being “a unique framework for developing educational programs and curricula aimed at transformative learning” (see Earth Charter & Education). It appears that Benjamin Crème has jumped onto the MUN bandwagon as I have discovered a discussion board link that shows he has been distributing “the Christ is now here" literature at those events.

Some of the more troubling materials coming out of the Model United Nations simulations are those pertaining to the Alliance of Civilizations initiative. In
C’MUN’s concluding document, the final paragraph identifies that “extremism and terrorism are motivated solely by exclusivist interpretations of religion”. This is consistent with the AoC's theme that exclusivist interpretations equals terrorism. I've listed a few documents targeted to youth that carry this theme:
  • “Based on the value of tolerance stems the notion that perfection is solely reserved for God and that only He knows Absolute Truth whereas human beings can merely make individual efforts and judgments.” (Chicago Model United Nations blogspace)
  • “There should be no monopoly of the truth, and there should be a clear understanding that the traditional Christian Churches and Muslim centrism have to speak the language of the age.” (Amman Model United Nations)
  • Objective of the Euro-Mediterranean partnership and the young alliance of civilizations: “to counter the influence of those who want to have the monopoly of the truth.”
  • “A major issue that the world community faces is to accept that no group, religious or otherwise, has a monopoly on enlightenment or truth.” (New Zealand Diversity Forum working to implement an Alliance of Civilizations)

These documents also coincide with the Alliance of Civilizations’ grades 6-12 Daily Lesson Plan where Christianity is portrayed as exclusivist and as a religion that foments hatred. For example, this theme is found scattered throughout the materials on Christianity: “Exclusivism, the belief that my religion is true and that all others are false, can develop into hatred of other faith groups and their members. Religious exclusivism is often a major cause of much of the world's civil unrest, civil wars, mass crimes against humanity and genocide.”

The lesson plan also explains that the Revelation prophecy pertaining to the mark of the beast, number 666, was fulfilled by Roman Emperor Nero. Read
here and here.

Universities are also cooperating with the AoC as we see in the Higher Education’s contribution to building the Alliance of Civilizations workshop. The Council of Europe recently sponsored the seminar Global Education and Youth which focuses on the implementation of the Alliance of Civilizations. The seminar’s purpose is to “develop, enhance and sustain strategies and capacity-building for global education, targeting institutions and practitioners in the field of global education in the formal and non-formal sectors.”

Palgrave Macmillan, a publisher of educational text books, shares the AoC’s vision. Notice the section in the above image which states “The aim of the initiative [Alliance of Civilizations] is for all the citizens of the world to unite in placing their universal citizenship before their condition as citizens of a country, religion or civilization.

As I was preparing this article, the History Channel broadcasted an interesting commercial produced by Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI) . YHRI is the collaborative efforts of the Church of Scientology and Scientologist Mary Shuttleworth. YHRI seeks to combat intolerance through the advancement of human rights within the framework of the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Alliance of Civilizations has said that intends to establish a “global conscience”. Article 29 of the Declaration accommodates just that:

  • Article 29: 1) Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible. 2) In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations are determined by law solely for the purposes of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society. 3) These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purpose and principles of the United Nations.

The Alliance of Civilizations et al are actively recruiting well intentioned youth. I share the young peoples' concerns that we live in peaceful world as free peoples. But there is much underlying garbage that is being subtly--and sometimes not so subtly--introduced to serve the AoC’s broader objectives. I fear for young people. How many have been conditioned to accept Maitreya? How many of the youth in the opening picture will find themselves transformed to accept a doctrine of “no fear, no mercy”?

October 14, 2007

Propaganda Precedes War: the AoC's Media Rapid Response Force

Propaganda precedes war. It is war that the Alliance of Civilisations’ High Level Group intends to conduct on those who practice “religious fundamentalism” or “religious exclusivism.” The Alliance is finding it increasingly difficult to strike a balance tolerating religious diversity and secularization. As written in the Cultural Exchange Report:

  • “Religious fundamentalism is on the rise globally, and intolerance of secular humanism and modern science is its dangerous companion. It is largely a Christian phenomenon in the U.S., but a Muslim one in Europe and elsewhere…Many countries in secular Europe are struggling to find a balance between tolerating diversity and assuring that their basic humanistic beliefs and values are sustained.”

The opening of the AoC’s Analysis on Media report quotes Benjamin Barber saying “it is time to recognize that the true tutors of our children are no longer the school teachers and university professors, but the filmmakers, advertising executives and pop culture purveyors.” This being the case, securing access to media resources has ranked high on the Alliances’ Implementation Plan. To achieve its goals, the establishment of a media rapid response force is essential. The rapid response force will have the following characteristics:

  • “The AoC will seek to establish a rapid response media-based mechanism to be mobilized during times of increased global tensions around cross-cultural issues.”
  • “This mechanism will be developed in three stages: 1. an international network of prominent personalities who are strongly involved in cross-cultural issues and are in a position to provide insights into potentially divisive intercultural debates will be created. 2. When an event that threatens to polarize communities along religious or cultural lines occurs, this network will be rapidly mobilized. Op-ed pieces (including some that may be co-authored across relevant cultural, national, and/or religious lines) signed by members of this network will be produced in a short space of time and translated in major languages. 3. This media content will then be distributed to major print media editors for their consideration as they try to cover and explain divisive cross-cultural issues to their readers, and disseminated through other mechanisms.
  • “At the political level, mainly through the High Representative’s role, the AoC aims to facilitate the establishment of contacts and dialogues with political, religious, media and civil society personalities who would be prepared to exert their influence in advancing the Alliance of Civilizations’ objectives.”
I believe we have witnessed personalities sympathetic to the Alliance’s objectives already exert their influence through CNN’s broadcast of God’s Warriors.

(Left to right: Karen Armstrong, Genevieve Abdo, Jimmy Carter, Christiane Amanpour, Richard Cizik) In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Christiane Amanpour said that the two big issues that our planet faces are the environment and the clash of civilizations. It came as no surprise that the program paralleled the writings of the Alliance of Civilizations’ as it identified the Israeli-Palestinian problem as being kept alive by the adherents of the three monotheistic faiths. It pointed to these adherents as extremists who, by applying a literal interpretation of religious texts, are susceptible to adoption of a terrorist mindset.

Amanpour then periodically interjected analysis from “moderates” who were clearly aligned with her presentation of the problem. Among them include “religious historian” and AoC High Level Group member Karen Armstrong, AoC Liaison Officer Genevieve Abdo, Lucis Trust World Server Jimmy Carter, and National Association of Evangelicals Richard Cizik.

The CNN-Alliance of Civilizations partnership links are clear where Karen Armstrong and
Genevieve Abdo are concerned. Armstrong is perhaps the most vocal critic of monotheists and Christianity in particular. The preceding blog article provides an in-depth into her mindset.

Jimmy Carter was given a great deal of time to “re-claim” Christianity from the fundamentalists. Carter points to his christ as being quite different to that of, let’s say, John Hagee. No doubt. Jimmy Carter is one of Lucis (formerly Lucifer) Trust’s
World Servers. Lucis Trust’s spiritual community gives us insight into the purpose of the Group of World Servers:
  • “…this group is today preparing the way for the Christ, the coming World Teacher, as they labor to bring the "Kingdom of God"-the kingdom of Souls-into physical manifestation.”
  • “The restoration of the mysteries can only take place when members of the Hierarchy of Love-Wisdom are again openly active on the physical plane, as they were in the days of Atlantis, many millions of years ago. At the core of the mysteries is the recognition of humanity's own divine nature. Humanity, the great world disciple, stands at the door of initiation. It is the great opportunity and responsibility of the NGWS to prepare the way for the reappearance of the Christ-the Hierophant of the first and second initiations and the One who will lead in the restoration of the mysteries and the consequent "full flowering" of humanity”

Perhaps one of the most troubling participants I see is Richard Cizik. It appears as though he has climbed into bed with the new agers. I recently read where he partakes in mocking Christians for having an unfounded fear of the United Nations. According to the Christian Post, Cizik participated in the development of the World Council of Churches’ Code of Conduct for Religious Conversion. The World Council of Churches, speaking of the Code of Conduct, tells us that “religious preachers need to be told that no religion has a monopoly on the truth, that there are many ways to find salvation.” Cizik is well aware that the claims of the Gospels are exlusive. Perhaps he’s not so convinced of John 14:6 himself as he tells us that all truth is God’s truth wherever we find it.

I would urge Richad Cizik to carefully re-examine his political partnerships as the United Nations has openly said that the partnership of civilizations is to represent a “powerful response to those who feed on exclusion and arrogantly claim sole ownership of the truth.”

Also within the Analysis of Media report, we learn that “free speech is nowhere absolute…

  • "any diverse society must regularly revisit the lines it draws in its legislation and within its editorial decision-making processes, over where to draw the line between free speech and that speech which foments hatred.”

This is very troubling as one begins to question what does the AoC consider speech which foments hatred? Proselytization with an “exclusive” truth claim? Religious criticism? Let’s look at some not-to-distant past examples.

Apart from the news media, the AoC places much emphasis on reaching youth through popular culture. As they’ve said

  • “Western popular culture, developed and distributed by powerful multi-national corporations, is seen by many as a hegemonic, and negative force…At the same time, popular culture is perhaps one of the greatest opportunities for combating fundamentalism and bridging the cultural divide between Muslim and Western cultures. …common musical language results in voracious consumption of hip-hop by youth across the world regardless of where it originates.”

The AoC intends to introduce its messages through rap music as well as television entertainment medium such as sit coms. Little Mosque on the Prairie, which broadcasts in Canada, is one such example. Interestingly, the AoC, claiming to be so sensitive over religious symbols, shows little regard for the symbol of the cross as one can see in this Little Mosque youtube introduction.

As Amanpour has said, the biggest problem facing the world today is the “clash of civilizations”. I concur. But it is not a clash amongst the three monotheistic faiths that worries me. It is the clash that the Alliance of Civilizations intends to facilitate and manage—a clash to bring about the restoration of the mysteries—that all others will appear pale in comparison.

October 12, 2007

Karen Armstrong and the Alliance of Civilizations

Here is an article written by Constance Cumbey. It provides valuable insight into the direction of the Alliance of Civilizations' High Level Group.

I decided it was time that I look in on the Alliance of Civilizations. Internet searching, I found a page on its UNAOC (United Nations Alliance of Civilizations) website. It was labeled “HLG Analysis.” I went there. The first thing I noticed was a fairly new article by Karen Armstrong. Karen Armstrong is a former nun who considers herself a first rate theologian as well as an analytical scholar of world religions. Many others have given her credit for this as well, including but not limited to Kofi Annan, the former Secretary General of the United Nations who appointed her as one of the High Level Group of Personalities to oversee and make recommendations for governments to regulate religious school curriculums globally. Since Karen Armstrong spent years, per her account, in a convent, “under a veil,” I expected her to have some basic grasp of at least Christianity. She is perhaps the most prominent face and voice of the HLG (High Level Group).Karen Armstrong writes lots of articles and gives lots of interviews. What initially distinguished this one for me was to whom she gave it: SHARE INTERNATIONAL! Share International is the official publication of the “Christ is now here” crowd, specifically Benjamin Crème and his “Maitreya the Christ” company. Sometimes they, with permission, reprint articles from other sources. I looked carefully to see if this was perhaps the case here. It was not. The article was an interview specifically for SHARE INTERNATIONAL by Andrea Bistrich. I am now wondering out loud if Karen Armstrong knew that SHARE INTERNATIONAL was (1) about a new ‘Christ’ who was decidedly not Jesus (and probably not Jewish either) and (2) was the official organ for a group officially seeking a “New World Religion.”Since Karen Armstrong holds herself out as an expert in comparative religion, I assumed that if she knew even 1/100th of what she is reported to know, that she should have had knowledge of what Share International is about. I decided to “google” for myself. I assume Karen Armstrong is also as Javier Solana accused fundamentalists of doing, “taking full advantage of the global village” and doing her own due diligence google/yahoo searches before lending her name and prestige to one cause or another. Doing my own google search on “Share International” I didn't have to look far. The top ten hits were all about “Maitreya the World Teacher.” You may read the top hit by clicking here.Well, certainly no ambiguity there! Well let’s go to the interview article itself and judge her theological and scriptural expertise by its content. A few quotes from her SHARE INTERNATIONAL interview will do:“American Christian fundamentalists are not in favour of democracy; and it is true that many of the Neo-cons many of whom incline towards this fundamentalism, have very hard line, limited views.”“The Arab-Israeli conflict has also become pivotal to Christian fundamentalists in the United States. The Christian Right believes that unless the Jews are in their land, fulfilling the ancient prophecies, Christ cannot return in glory in the Second Coming. So they are passionate Zionists, but this ideology is also anti-Semitic, because in the Last Days they believe that the Antichrist will massacre the Jews in the Holy Land if they do not accept baptism.”Baptism? I’m sure she meant to say, “initiation.” The New Agers of whom she has said nothing in expressing her alleged worries over various “fundamentalisms” have clearly written in so many of their books by so many of their prominent writers (Alice Bailey, Gina Cerminara, Benjamin Crème, Barbara Marx Hubbard, and David Spangler to name but a few) that there will be violence against, “the sword of cleavage” and death to those who fail to accept their New Age “Christ.” A relatively less publicized version of the Great Invocation that Lucis Trust promotes as the new world prayer for the New Age contains a stanza, “let light and love and power and death fulfill the purpose of the coming one.”Well, maybe their New Age Christ repented and decided everybody should be baptized to protect them from his god Lucifer! Fat chance!Well, now about her theology. Again, I found she was a much better and closer reader than me. Maybe her contemplative time in the monastery showed her hidden texts or was it her post-nunnery Akashic record meditations? Her Christology is certainly most unique for a former religious:“Luke’s gospel calls Jesus a prophet from start to finish; the idea that Jesus was divine was a later development, often misunderstood by Christians.”Well, now I know for certain that Karen Armstrong is certainly both a superior reader and theologian to Yours Truly. I have read the Gospel of Luke many times and certainly missed the points that Karen Armstrong raised to Share International the purveyors of a very foreign gospel proclaiming that Jesus is not the Christ, but this “Maitreya”/Betraya or whatever his/its name is supposed to be is divine.I decided to again read the Gospel of Luke for myself. Far from finding what Karen Armstrong claimed it said, here’s what it said about Jesus’ divinity:“Fear not Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. (Luke 1:31-33)“Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:34-35)“And it came to pass, that when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? (Luke 1:42-43)“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:11-12)“And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. . . . Then took he him [Baby Jesus] up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, “Lord now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.” . . . And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against(Luke 2:26-31)May I disrespectfully guess that Karen Armstrong in her own inimical way is striving to fulfill the prophetic musings of Simeon? And then, also in the Gospel of Luke was the prophetess Anna, also finding the Baby Jesus in the temple.“And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem.” (Luke 2:17)Well, Karen Armstrong is a busy person. Maybe she has no time, given her busy media and Alliance of Civilizations schedule to read the Book of Luke for herself. If she had, she might have noticed this statement from Jesus as recorded in the Book of Luke:The law and the prophets lasted up until John. From that time the kingdom of God is proclaimed and every man presses into it.Well you get the point. The Book of Luke from start to finish clearly proclaims the Divinity of Jesus. Perhaps Karen Armstrong confused the statements about Jesus with the statements about John!Well, I’ve got to put a charitable interpretation on all of this. My most unkind observation is to say that since she left the convent, she has obviously made her divorce from Jesus very final. My charitable interpretation is maybe she, an ex-nun, just got out of the habit!Finally, maybe her knowledge is so specialized, she just plain doesn’t know. If Karen Armstrong needs a reading list of the Hidden Dangers of the folks she gave that Share International interview to, I could help!