Religion, Peace and Justice

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  • Created by: Sapphire
  • Created on: 10-11-12 14:17

Why people go to war

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Pro-war quotes

  • "if someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn him to the other also" - Matthew 5:39.
  • "Life for a life, eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, hand for a hand and foot for a foot" - Exodus 21:23-24
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Anti-war quotes

  • "Blessed are the peacemakers" - Matthew 5:9.
  • "You shall not murder" - Exodus 20:13.
  • "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" - Matthew 5:44.
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The Just War

A Just War is one that has to be fought but has to follow certain conditions.

Conditions for a Just War:

  • It must be declared by a proper authority.
  • There must be a good reason for the war.
  • The intention of the war must be to do good and not evil. They cannot be carried out for revenge!
  • It must be a last resort.
  • It must do more good than harm.
  • It has to be possible to win - lives should not be risked for no reason.
  • The methods used must be fair.

The conditions are designed to prevent war and to limit it's effects.

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Pacifists - Absolutists

A pacifist is someone who is against the use of violence.

Three types of pacifists the first being:

  • Absolutists - will have nothing to do with a war. Refuse to even work helping wounded soldiers in a war. If they were placed in the middle of a war zone they would refuse to do anything, even if this means getting killed themselves.

An example of an absolutist is Brocklesby - absolutist because of his religious beliefs. When he refused to participate in the war, he was arrested.

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Pacifists - Alternativists

Another type of pacifist is the:

  • Alternativists - They are not as strongly against war as the absolutists. They will still refuse to fight in the war but they are willing to help out during the times of war. They would work as medics for the wounded soldiers or transporting them away from the warzone.The work they are doing could be classed as bringing peace.

The religious society of friends (Quakers) are an example of alternativists.

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Few Christian pacifists are prepared to fight in a war, if it is justified.

It is justified if it follows the conditions of the 'Just War' theory.

They believe that God will allow some forms of violence, if there is a valid reason for it.

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Conscientious objector - Muhammed Ali

This is someone that is firmly opposed to all war and will not support it.

Muhammed Ali is a conscientious objector. He refused to take part in the Vietnam war, on the grounds of his Islamic belief and also he felt the issues at home were more important (black american). His own country did not value him because of the colour of his skin. He believed that people in Vietnam had done nothing wrong to him personally so why should he fight them?

During a war a conscientious objector will:

  • work in a civilian hospital
  • move soldiers away from the warzone

The law states that conscientious objectors do not have to go to war.

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Conscientious objectors

Conscientious objectors will say that war causes too much suffering, especially of the innocent.

They believe killing or harming another human being can never be jusified.

War goes against the idea of stewardship.

They may follow the teachings of Saint Paul:

  • "Live peaceably with all"
  • "Never take revenge - leave it to God's anger"
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